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2021 Computational Biology/Bioinformatics/Systems Biology PhD Admissions


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5 hours ago, keke_kk said:

Hello! thats very detailed thank you! I got one question though, If I have poor gpa for my undergad(3.1 nearly) will it be a good decision to study masters for improve it and gain chances for a good school?

You can have research experience and also work experiences will help. Get high GRE would be helpful too

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Yes, I just checked unfortunately I got rejected to UCSF. I did just find out I got into Yale though!! UCSF and Yale were my top choices so I am really happy!!

ACCEPTED TO UPENN GCB! Wow so excited. 

I was just accepted to the HST program at MIT/Harvard!! I can't believe it. Still part of me thinks they made a mistake and accidentally admitted me. 

5 hours ago, keke_kk said:

Hello! thats very detailed thank you! I got one question though, If I have poor gpa for my undergad(3.1 nearly) will it be a good decision to study masters for improve it and gain chances for a good school?

I'm not the best example of a candidate, but I also had a 3.1 GPA. I ended up deciding to work at FAAMG software engineering companies for 3 years, and then move into biotech (still as a software engineer) which ended up helping me understand better what I wanted to research, though I've only gotten an interview from UCSF so far. Work experience is also nice since you can leave education for a bit, get a fresh view, and not be in debt :)

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6 hours ago, keke_kk said:

Hello! thats very detailed thank you! I got one question though, If I have poor gpa for my undergad(3.1 nearly) will it be a good decision to study masters for improve it and gain chances for a good school?

I agree with what everyone else said as well. Personally, I did a masters that was a part of a contiguous program with my undergrad degree at the same university. It was shorter at only 1 year (some of the work was done during my undergrad) and I was able to TA for all three quarters which paid my entire master's tuition. I highly recommend finding out if your university has a similar program if you are interested in a master's degree. 

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7 hours ago, keke_kk said:

Hello! thats very detailed thank you! I got one question though, If I have poor gpa for my undergad(3.1 nearly) will it be a good decision to study masters for improve it and gain chances for a good school?

I kinda want to say also dont apply all to top school. The population post on here is very screwed.. a lot of they have near prefect gpa with publication... aim a little lower and you will have much better mental health and options in application season

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29 minutes ago, kaffeinatedkat said:

I agree with what everyone else said as well. Personally, I did a masters that was a part of a contiguous program with my undergrad degree at the same university. It was shorter at only 1 year (some of the work was done during my undergrad) and I was able to TA for all three quarters which paid my entire master's tuition. I highly recommend finding out if your university has a similar program if you are interested in a master's degree. 

Any chance you went to UCSD? I know we have a BS/MS program that works exactly like that! :)

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18 minutes ago, Sky_china said:

I kinda want to say also dont apply all to top school. The population post on here is very screwed.. a lot of they have near prefect gpa with publication... aim a little lower and you will have much better mental health and options in application season

I agree in part. My GPA is good -- not stellar -- and I don't have any papers in publication. It's a good idea to apply to a range of programs as you see fit, but don't stop yourself from dreaming big (as long as you have a backup plan)! There are almost no perfect students, even in top programs.

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32 minutes ago, evovae said:

I agree in part. My GPA is good -- not stellar -- and I don't have any papers in publication. It's a good idea to apply to a range of programs as you see fit, but don't stop yourself from dreaming big (as long as you have a backup plan)! There are almost no perfect students, even in top programs.

yeah I think everyone will apply some reachy schools. I am just warning her not to apply a lot, the GC of people posting all the interviews and offers is really mental destructive when your inbox is empy. if you have 2 ~3 your interviews and less rejection, I think it builds well for you confidence in interview as welll. getting one interview from top school is impressive but i would say if you  don't have the some low rank program, the pressure will crush a lot of people ( my experience ) in interview. 

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8 hours ago, keke_kk said:

Hello! thats very detailed thank you! I got one question though, If I have poor gpa for my undergad(3.1 nearly) will it be a good decision to study masters for improve it and gain chances for a good school?

Yes.  

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On 1/10/2021 at 4:05 PM, keke_kk said:

Hello everyone! I wish u all the luck in upcoming interviews! I'm aiming to pursue computational biology once I get bachelor degree in computer science. I got couple of question for if you bother to answer ^^ 

1. what is average gpa for you people? I read the messages and everybody is aiming for the best school wonder if I can as well?! 

2. Can I apply for masters and PhD degree at the same program? or should I complete my masters before applying at PhD? 

 

Thank you all!

I would guess the average is around 3.4.  In the U.S., the standard cut-off is 3.0 but if you have a sub 3.0 GPA you can offset with other experiences, LORs, SOP, etc.  A good number of programs will also admit you on the condition that you make up any deficiencies while in your first year or so.  

Some programs will automatically consider you for both.  That is, if you do not meet the requirements for the Ph.D. program you will be offered a spot in their M.S. program if you qualify for that.  I am pretty sure that all programs will allow you to apply to both (in reality, it is the online application system that allows it) and happily take your money, however, it is not a good idea as your reasons for a Ph.D. are (i.e., should be) different than for wanting an MS degree and if you apply to both you will come off as being unsure of a Ph.D.  In this case, it is best to apply to MS programs only.  

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12 hours ago, keke_kk said:

Hello! thats very detailed thank you! I got one question though, If I have poor gpa for my undergad(3.1 nearly) will it be a good decision to study masters for improve it and gain chances for a good school?

If you have extensive research experience, a good GRE, and anything else that makes you stand out then you may not need to do a masters. If that isn't the case then yes I would recommend either doing a masters or you can do any type of post-bac research. In my opinion, post-bac research or job is better since you will get paid and develop experience instead of going into debt paying off your masters. 

Also depends on what your definition of a "good school" is. Many schools that aren't considered "top" have excellent PI's that are at the top of the field. I think it's best to first find PI's that you're really interested in and then apply to those schools. Ultimately, a PhD will be about your advisor as opposed to the school itself. 

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20 minutes ago, Simaiinox said:

Has anyone heard from Stanford BMI yet btw? I know it could still come out later this week, just being impatient haha

it seems like someone got an interview on 12/15 on the results page

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Hi. To answer the GPA/ research questions, here are my stats and results

 

GPA: 3.59 (from small liberal arts college)

MAJOR: Biology

PUBLISHED: 3

RESEARCH:

-Summer 2015: Computational Bio REU (2 publications from this)

-Spring 2016: Computational research study abroad (1 publication, of which I’m the co-author)

-Summer 2016: Wet-lab REU 

-Fall 2015, Fall 2016-Spring 2017: Wet lab/ Biochemistry research (no publications from this one lol)

-Summer 2017: Computation Biology internship at start-up

 

POST GRAD

-Clinical research coordinator: 2017-fall 2019

-IT/ software development: fall 2020 - present


PROS:

-Solid research experience and GPA

 

CONS

-Have worn a lot of hats/ may come across as unfocused

-Been out of academia since 2017

-No formal CS coursework (I learned it all on the job)

-Little formal math coursework (A in Calc II, having never taken Calc I, this fall; currently enrolled in Linear Algebra and Calc III

-Having Dyslexia so, despite my best efforts, some of my applications def have typos


SCHOOLS APPLIED 
Interview:

-Wash U DBBS
-Mighican PIBS

Waiting and Haven’t Given Up Hope lol:

-Stanford BMI

-Vanderbilt BIDS

No Response/ Assumed Rejection:

-Harvard BIG

-NYU Systems and Computational

-UPenn GCB

-Duke CBB

-UNC DGP

Edited by WanderingPath
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4 minutes ago, fullofhopes said:

it seems like someone got an interview on 12/15 on the results page

Yeah, I saw that but the email sent when applying was that they would send interview invites the week of Jan 11, and with only one data point from an anonymous source not in this forum I'm not sure I trust it / somewhat believe they will send more at some point this week?

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1 hour ago, WanderingPath said:

Hi. To answer the GPA/ research questions, here are my stats and results

 

GPA: 3.59 (from small liberal arts college)

MAJOR: Biology

PUBLISHED: 3

RESEARCH:

-Summer 2015: Computational Bio REU (2 publications from this)

-Spring 2016: Computational research study abroad (1 publication, of which I’m the co-author)

-Summer 2016: Wet-lab REU 

-Fall 2015, Fall 2016-Spring 2017: Wet lab/ Biochemistry research (no publications from this one lol)

-Summer 2017: Computation Biology internship at start-up

 

POST GRAD

-Clinical research coordinator: 2017-fall 2019

-IT/ software development: fall 2020 - present


PROS:

-Solid research experience and GPA

 

CONS

-Have worn a lot of hats/ may come across as unfocused

-Been out of academia since 2017

-No formal CS coursework (I learned it all on the job)

-Little formal math coursework (A in Calc II, having never taken Calc I, this fall; currently enrolled in Linear Algebra and Calc III


SCHOOLS APPLIED 
Interview:

-Wash U DBBS
-Mighican PIBS

Waiting and Haven’t Given Up Hope lol:

-Stanford

-Vanderbilt

No Response/ Assumed Rejection:

-Harvard 

-NYU

-UPenn

-Duke

-UNC

I am just gonna say  I don't think NYU (grossman) is all done at this point,not sure about the Tandon and GSAS program. Harvard seems pretyy likely and UPenn I know its all sent out. 

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13 minutes ago, Sky_china said:

I am just gonna say  I don't think NYU (grossman) is all done at this point,not sure about the Tandon and GSAS program. Harvard seems pretyy likely and UPenn I know its all sent out. 

I didn’t know that about NYU/ Grossman. Yeah, I read that UPenn was out. I would love to get an interview with Vanderbilt or Stanford, but I recognize that all do the programs I applied to are super competitive and I am very happy that I have received the 2 interviews I have.

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9 minutes ago, WanderingPath said:

I didn’t know that about NYU/ Grossman. Yeah, I read that UPenn was out. I would love to get an interview with Vanderbilt or Stanford, but I recognize that all do the programs I applied to are super competitive and I am very happy that I have received the 2 interviews I have.

Grossman's interview is in end of Feb and begining of March so there is still some time. Others have pretty close interview time for me to assume rejection

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1 hour ago, Simaiinox said:

Yeah, I saw that but the email sent when applying was that they would send interview invites the week of Jan 11, and with only one data point from an anonymous source not in this forum I'm not sure I trust it / somewhat believe they will send more at some point this week?

Yes, I agree with you! I haven't seen anything after that so I am not sure about it either.

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