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Harvard Education Masters


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Sorry to hear about your rejection. I was just accepted into the Learning and Teaching program. I'm a senior undergrad at top tier school in NYC. My GPA is 3.8. GRE 650 Verbal/570 Math/5.5 Writing (which really isn't great...). I was pretty confident in both my statement of purpose and recommendations, but I think the two things that worked best in my favor are that I have experience doing academic research and my undergraduate degree is in Music Education, so I have spent a lot of time observing and student teaching in NYC public schools.

Hope this helps!

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I haven't heard anything on funding yet, but if I don't get enough, I wont be able to go. When I filled out my FAFSA, my estimated contribution to my education was very low because I'm independent, fresh out of undergrad, and not receiving any money from family. I honestly have no idea what their packages are like. I believe tuition and fees come out to close to $35,000...plus housing...ugh.

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A person I know get into HGSE for M.A.


- GPA 3.9 (2nd rank in class) from School of education, university in South East Asia

- GRE V660/Q680/AWA 3.5

- TOEFL (paper-based) above 600 TWE 3

- LOR from HGSE Alumni

- 1.5-2 years teaching experience in private school in his country

Hope this helps.

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I'm sorry to hear about your rejection, but if it's any consolation, I met the admissions director during an open house last year and she mentioned quite often that HGSE is searching for passionate individuals dedicated to education and want to see that aspect somewhere in an application. She also said that the admissions committee doesn't categorize applications by GPA or GRE scores but examines each file holistically. Hopefully that'll help give you an idea of what they're looking for.

Anyways I was accepted to their Language and Literacy program. I'm currently finishing up my senior year in a 4 year B.A. and multiple teaching credential program at a state university, which means I've been working in elementary schools since my freshman year and am currently doing student teaching. I have a lot of volunteer experience in the community, having worked 3 years volunteering at a children hospital's on-site school program, 2 years working in an adult literacy program and 2 years doing leadership work with fellow literacy volunteers. I had a fairly strong SOP, great LORs, my GRE scores were decent (V600 Q680 A5.5) and my GPA is ok (3.70 CUM, 3.94 UPPER). One of my LORs was from a HGSE alumni, although I'm not sure what effect that had on my application, if any. Also the fact that I'm fluent in another language besides English helped me when applying to Language and Literacy (according to my alumni professor), but I'm not sure how that factors into other programs.

As for potentially negative qualities, I am young (I was 20 when I applied), lack any solid teaching experience in my own classroom and don't have any research experience.

Tuition and fees come to be around $37k, with living expenses being estimated around $20k.

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  • 7 months later...

This is all very interesting. I'm applying this year from what is probably an odd background. I will have a law degree and I want to do the Ed.M in EPM to prepare for work in education law and policy. I don't have much education background at all, which is why I want to do the degree - I've volunteered at schools and I've been a teaching assistant for undergrads and law students, but my background is substantially more in politics, anti-poverty policy, and civil rights law. I'm interested in HGSE because I've realized through that work that the best long-term anti-poverty policy is good education policy that targets poor children. My interest in education policy is fairly new. I think classroom experience would be helpful, but in my mind it doesn't seem particularly relevant to the kind of work I want to do.

Other than this, I think I should be a fairly strong applicant. Do y'all think I'll get dinged because I haven't been working on this specific set of issues for years??? That would make me very sad - I'm so excited about this program.

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  • 3 months later...

I think some experiences in education are definitely helpful, but experience is not the only criterion the admission committee looks at. I am now in the human dev program in master's degree in HGSE, but I am from counseling background rather than teaching. Some of my classmates do not have any experiences in full-time teaching or related positions, they just graduated from college!

I asked one of the faculties who also served in the admissions committee, he said that the most important criterion is whether your interests meet the specialties of current faculties, which should be shown in your SOP. It is totally fine if you do not have a very particular interest to pursue, since master's degree is a time for students to explore a larger possibility in any educational fields.

I am sure GRE is not an indicator of the admission, since I got a silly score on it: 470 Verbal/740 Quantitative/ 4.5 AWA (lol). Though I am an international student and my native language is not English, still the score is so funny. My college GPA is 3.96, much better than the poor GRE. Aside from GRE, I have worked in a public middle school as part-time school counselor intern for a year, full-time military counselor also a year, and that's all. I did one research in college and it was full-granted by the government. Some experiences in leadership in student society and orchestra might help my application. I know I got strong LORs, though none of my recommender is HGSE alumni.

I am sorry to hear that you were rejected. however, in my opinion, if you plan to try again, tailor your SOP to meet your interest and the faculties specialties might help. Good luck!

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Monamour and I just had a back and forth about HGSE Master's admissions, here: viewtopic.php?f=33&t=15759&start=0

My profile on the HGSE site says:

Application Status: Completed on 1/31/2009 12:38:00 PM

(when Harvard cleared it that everything was in and official). Does anyone else care to share when theirs was completed? I'm wondering if we'll see any correlation in admit dates or if they all go out at the same time.

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  • 2 weeks later...

My profile on the HGSE site says:

Application Status: Completed on 1/8/2009

Yes, mine also says 1/8/2009.

It took forever for my transcripts to arrive, I guess.

I don't expect to hear until early next week just because last year people heard on March 14- 17.

Three of my friends had a great time at Harvard doing their MEd. One is a math teacher at a private school now, the other works in admissions (undergrad)office himself and the third person used to be with Kaplan but switched to a smaller company doing similar test prep work.

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