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GRE Scores for Top Sociology PhD Programs


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Hi everyone, 

I have a question regarding GRE scores for top sociology PhD programs - I recently took the GRE and scored 165V, 154Q, and 6 AW - basically I am trying to gauge whether my relatively low math score will limit my application. From what I've researched so far, it seems as though the averages for GRE scores for top programs is much higher in verbal than in quant, but I'm deciding on whether I need to take it again or whether it will not count against me considering my verbal and writing score. I am also aware that most schools take your whole application into consideration but use the GREs as an initial weeding out process. Any advice would be super helpful. Thank you!

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I think it largely depends on the rest of your profile, and perhaps to a lesser extent on the kind of research you wish to do. If you're applying to learn computational methods, it might be worth studying for the math section and taking the GRE again (unless you have other things you can point to in your profile as preparing you to be a quantitative sociologist). If you're interested in historical research or ethnography, however, it really does depend on the rest of your profile, and probably particularly your GPA and research experience.

And of course, pretty much no matter what your SOP will be the most important part of your application. 

Edited by sociopolitic
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  • 2 weeks later...

Your scores certainly don't disqualify you from most top programs. It may hurt if you're looking at quant-heavy programs (such as Harvard) or if want to have a quant focus of some kind like the person above said, though you match UC Berkeley's average quantitative score (source: http://sociology.berkeley.edu/faq-admissions). Not sure if you're applying there, but regardless, it's the #1 program in the country, so that's a good sign. 

For what it's worth, I also scored a 154 on the quantitative and got into a top 20 program. 

Here's another link (https://www.coloradocollege.edu/dotAsset/be00c34c-5b8c-4097-97b9-4855574b8a3b.pdf). The information seems a little dated in this one, but it may help you get a sense of what certain programs look for 


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