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What's your age when you apply for graduate program for the first time and when you get into one?

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I am just curious. My family is great and encourages me to work for my dream, but they also want me to be realistic about this chase (mostly because of the financial situation at home). I am 22, fresh grad UG this year :)

 

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I was 21.5 when I applied, right now I am close to 22 (only a few months have passed ahaha) and I have offers from 5/9 universities that I applied to (3/9 are top schools, so I am not disappointed at all).

 

It is perfectly possible to apply for grad school at that age, keeping in mind that I am also an international applicant, but I really don't know how things are for the MA degree (where there are tuition fees), as I only applied for PhD. I realize that it might be tough for most of the parents to support financially their children in private institutions, or even in public ones.

 

In my opinion, don't worry about your age too much.

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I applied at 21 years old and was accepted to my top choice (of where I got interviews) and am now a first-year graduate student in a fully-funded clinical psychology Ph.D program at 22.

Totally possible.

Follow your dreams.

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Im on the other end of the spectrum, got my masters at 23 (finished undergrad at 21). Wanted to take a few years off after getting my M.A. and worked at Columbia and Mt. Sinai in nyc for a few years and eventually into a private practice running a research lab. Just turned 27 and will be going into graduate school this fall with a lot of experience under my belt. Interviews were not even a factor, I was extremely qualified and had so much working experience I was offered admission into every program and ended up taking a top R1 PhD program. So sometime giving yourself some time to apply will really help you get where you want to go and also make graduate school easier for you. Best of luck!

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I was 23 when I entered my first graduate program and 27 when I entered my second. I got in on the first try both application seasons, but with only one acceptance each time out of ten schools. Finances weren't an issue since I was funded both times. Sure, a grad student stipend isn't anything luxurious, but it's enough to pay the bills and live comfortably as long as you aren't a single parent or have exorbitant medical expenses. As far as knowing what you want to do, I think my first experience in grad school definitely helped concretize my goals a lot, even though that particular experience didn't go all that smoothly.

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I think the point in this thread is that its really up to you to assess how ready you feel for graduate level work. I got into grad school the first time at 23, and am now 27 and will be attending this fall (much like other posters in this thread). I applied to masters programs once with several acceptances, and applied to PhD programs twice (first time no luck, second time with 5 acceptances at top 50 R1 universities). I'd hazard a guess that the second round was successful because I was prepared and knew exactly what I wanted out of my education and time in a program. The first time, I mainly just derped around and told people I liked brains.

I met several incredibly mature young individuals that were still in undergrad at my interviews, so with that, Idont think age is the best way to operationalize capacity to succeed, but rather your focus and preparation. Good luck!

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I'll be starting my PhD super young. I skipped a grade, so I'm graduating from undergrad this year at age 20. I'll turn 21 over the summer and start grad school in the fall. I think it really depends on your individual experiences and readiness! There's a lot of variability in the ages of incoming grad cohorts.

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I did a joint ba/ma program, so I started grad school relatively young. However, I am just turning 28, and I will be starting a PsyD in the fall. I took several years to work in the field and publish my MA thesis before applying, and I feel like that time really helped me to narrow my focus on what it is that I want. You have to do what works for you. There really isn't a right age. 

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I first applied when I was 21 going on 22, during my senior year of college. I received 6 interviews, but was ultimately rejected from  all of these programs. I've always been interested in healthcare systems, so I decided to pursue a Master of Public Health degree. I am now 24 and will be starting my Clinical Psych PhD in the fall. Age isn't necessarily a factor, but understanding what you are passionate about and being able to focus in on that throughout your application and interview process makes all the difference!

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I applied at 21 and started at 22. However, there are folks in my department who started graduate school at 28, at 30, and even at 52. Like others have said, there is no right age and you need to do what is the best choice for you given financial, social, and other personal factors. 

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The first time I applied I was 21 (senior in college), I was completely naive about the whole process and was ultimately rejected from the 4 programs I applied to. I'm 28 and about to graduate with my MS. Unfortunately it was a no go on PhD programs this cycle but I will be trying again. I've worked at a prestigious institution as a research assistant for the past 3 years and I am going to continue working on my publication list and gaining experience. Although it has taken me longer than I would have liked, I'm glad I took the time to get real world experience and mature before I enter such a rigorous program. However, it all depends on who you are and if you are mentally prepared for how challenging it is. 

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I was 23 when I entered my Master's back in Europe. If I get in this cycle I'd be 26 to start the PhD (and redo a Master's lol), otherwise try again for next year. 

Age.. well. I know people who are doing a PhD at 21. But had a classmate in my Master's in his 40s who is now a PhD student. Also my supervisor got into psych at the age of 30 after having worked as an English teacher for a long time (wanted to Eduational psych, but fell in love with social). 

It really doesn't matter. I don't believe in a linear path to life anyway. I enjoy all the weird twisted turns I have taken over the years. But I also know people who are happy their life goes more 'predictable'. 

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As previously said above, there is certainly no right or wrong answer to be found to this answer.

Personally, I had no idea what I wanted to do when I started my undergraduate degree and still did not have a clue when I finished. From the ages of 22-26, I started a Diabetes Prevention Program in Western North Carolina, Managed a Non-Profit, and built a Workplace Wellness Social Enterprise that now serves 4 counties. I will be starting a PhD this Fall at Clemson in Organizational Behavior and I can definitely say that the robust experience I have accumulated in 4 years has served me incredibly well in truly figuring out what I am most interested in and what I want to research. Every school I have interviewed with has been very impressed with my work experience and this certainly was a large reason why I was accepted to a PhD program with next to no research experience.  

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I graduated from undergrad at 23 and went directly to a MA program. I will be graduating in May and will start a PhD program in the Fall at 25.

I agree with what everyone else has said, though -- there really isn't a right age. It's all about what works best for you. 

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Guys, I guess I was misread a little.... Did mean to say that age is a determinant factor, I just want to plan the course of my life ahead and see what are the possible next steps.

Thank you for all the sharing though :D Love this community!

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I applied first when I was 24 and didn't get in. At 25 I applied again and got in! :) Overall, I'd say the timing was good. I am one payment away from paying off my undergrad loans and I've have ~3 years of post-undergrad work experience in various semi-related fields to what I want to study. The time working after undergrad gave me time to mature, figure out what research I am really interested in, and it solidified my passion to go back to school to complete the doctorate.

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Graduated undergrad at 22 and applied at the end of that year. Started my Master's at 23 and hopefully will start a PhD at 25. I took a gap year and I highly recommend it, I got a variety of work experience that really has worked out in my favor. 

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I'm a career changer, so my path has been a little circuitous.  I first applied for a clinical psych PhD program at 24 and was rejected.  Applied for clinical psych PhD again at 25 and was rejected again.  Applied to a grad cert program in positive psych at 26 and was accepted.  Completed that an applied for a counseling psych PhD program at 28, was rejected for PhD but accepted into the MEd program.  I applied for clinical and counseling psych PhD programs this past fall at 30 and was rejected by all.  I have had virtually no research experience through everything, so after I complete my MEd next month I'm going to spend a year doing research and hopefully publishing like crazy then applying again this fall at 31.

Everyone has a different path to graduate study.  If you feel you're ready to commit yourself to a graduate program now, there's no harm in going ahead and applying.  If you feel you need a few years of a break from school, there's no harm in taking some time away and returning in a year or two or ten...  Finances can certainly complicate decision making, but you'll make the decision that's right for your situation.  And truly there's really no wrong path to grad school.  Your path is your own.  Good luck!

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