Mike271828 Posted January 22, 2011 Share Posted January 22, 2011 My background: Junior Mathematics student at Auburn University20 years old4.0 GPAI plan to get a Ph.D in my field and then teach; however, stopping with a Master's and working for a bit before continuing on is not out of the questionEmployed as a paid tutor for the past 2 years, coordinator of the tutoring program since last yearResearch in Number Theory conducted at a summer REU programPaper based on said research has been accepted for publication in the International Journal of Mathematics and Computer ScienceAlso presented a poster on this research at the Joint Mathematics MeetingsContinuing to do research in the field of Fractional CalculusDue to graduate in December of this year Since my unfortunate discovery that I had yet another standardized test to look forward to (oh yay), I have been driving myself up the wall with all this GRE crapola. See, the problem is that I have traditionally done fairly poorly on standardized exams, at least when compared to the success I usually enjoy within my normal classes. Though I had a 32 on the ACT (not a terrible score), my peers seem to average a 34 while their GPAs are more around 3.2. Also troubling is the fact that my verbal section scores have always been consistently better than my math scores - I care so much about math that, not wanting to screw it up, I inadvertently spend waaaayyy too much time on it. In the practice materials that I have used thus far, I have done fairly well on the quantitative portion (but not stellar - also, I can't give you an exact score as there appear to be no grading mechanisms included in any of the 8 practice books I bought), and I've done terribly on the verbal section (missing probably 3 of every 4 questions). Over time, I've gotten a bit better, but I get so nervous about the actual exam whenever I look at the practice tests that I end up pulling my hair out, rubbing my hands raw, and staring at the ceiling all night unable to sleep due to a driving compulsion to study until my eyes bleed. I started seeing a psychologist; but he's been less than helpful, and during our last meeting he basically told me I'm a nut. I recently started taking valerian root and St. John's wort in an effort to calm down, though not enough time has passed for me to provide an accurate estimate of how much they have actually helped. What's worse, I can't take comfort in my bachelor's degree since you basically can't do anything with a bachelor's in Math; so theoretically, all the hard work and hours of study I've put in could all be for naught just from the results of a single examination. Of course, the endless varieties of grad school horror stories I've been told have certainly contributed to my current neurotic state: you need a 3.7 GPA to get into grad school, you need an 800 quantitative if you want to do mathematics related graduate work, you probably need a 700 verbal and a 5 analytical since the professors like to see people that can write research papers, they want leaders not followers, you should be able to speak and understand a foreign language, if you have a 4.0 GPA it's even more imperative that you do well on the GRE since a poorer GRE score is indicative of grade inflation, etc, etc, etc... At this rate, I think I might really end up in the psychiatric ward if I don't regain some of my composure, but studying only makes me less confident and it seems like the only cure for this disease is to get the GRE over with and to be accepted by a university....ANY university. Of course, this can't be accomplished in its entirety until some time in spring of next year, and in the mean time I'm a nervous wreck and getting worse by the day...I'm not sure how much longer I can put up with this pressure. Any advice you can give me will be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Mike Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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