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ssundva

Wait-listed!?

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As wait-list offers start to roll in, I was wondering if anyone knew the chances of being accepted off a wait-list (especially those who have applied in previous cycles). Obviously, the answer to such a question changes from school to school and program to program, but a general discussion of this would perhaps be helpful to those of us who have been wait-listed and are in the dark regarding our chances. Thanks!

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It really is a roll of the die (much like the application process itself). That said, I would imagine that at least one person would be taken from Stony Brook's waitlist. Look at this way: every one applies to at least five or six schools-- some up to sixteen. It isn't uncommon for some applicants to have three or four acceptances. As you go farther down the rankings, more and more waitlist spots will open up as candidates take better offers.

Also, keep in mind that it's only February. Don't fret yet. There's a big month (with a lot of news) just around the corner.

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Also, keep in mind that it's only February. Don't fret yet. There's a big month (with a lot of news) just around the corner.

That is, indeed, the truth. Thanks for putting things back into proper perspective! ; )

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I'm currently in the wait-list purgatory for two schools I really wanna go to. It's hard not to feel gutted about it.

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I'm wait-listed at my top choice, and was told I'd probably hear back AFTER April 15th. Anyone else in this situation? I don't know if I'd be willing to hold out and risk not entering a program at all (if I end up with another offer, which I currently don't have). Best of luck to my fellow wait-listers!

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I am also waitlisted at my one and only choice. Feeling pretty dead inside. My friend in the program says I have hope -- that all it takes is one person to drop, and that at least one person inevitably goes elsewhere. But there are only three spots for incoming students, so I am not holding my breath.

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I'm waitlisted at two schools...and I've been rejected from 6 already. I still have to hear (officially) from Yale and Upenn, but it isn't looking good. I can't believe I'm going to have to wait for another month and a half to find out if I have a spot or not!

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When I applied to MA programs a couple of years back, I was waitlisted at 3 places, and two of them eventually came through with funding (although it was after April 15, and I had already accepted an offer elsewhere). But what I'm saying is, it *is* possible to get in off the waitlist. So don't give up hope, and good luck!

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If a school is willing to make an offer after April 15th, this is a good thing. Some programs have no problem enrolling fewer students than they make offers to, on the assumption that it somehow ensures the "integrity" of their program. Of course, if you have another offer, that's even better. You should always go with the sure thing. Moreover, in many cases (and understandably so), I have heard a number of people say that they prefer the school that actively recruits them to the dream school that admits them as an afterthought.

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It seems like one's chances of getting in off a wait list would depend on the way the school sets up their wait list. For example, being wait listed at a school that admits 12 students and looks for a class of 8 would be far worse than being wait listed at a school that admits only 8 students and looks for a class of 8. In addition, if the school has large teaching obligations for grad students or a particularly poor stipend, one would expect many students to decline offers, opening them up for waitlisters.

it might be helpful to email the DGS and ask gently if he or she might be able to provide you with some numbers, even (for programs like the first one described above) what their typical acceptance rate is.

But perhaps hope should not be too high. This comment from the results board informs us that last year, at least, seemingly everyone wanted to go to UT-Austin: "I called the Graduate Program coordinator and was told that every first round offer accepted admission except for one, who has not yet made a decision."

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ssundva, I feel ya. I applied to six schools -- no safeties, with the rationale being that I could take a year off and apply again with a wider scope if I didn't get in -- but as of now, I am waitlisted for FOUR of these schools. Basically, I'd jump at the chance to go to any one of them, but I have no clue how likely that is. I mean, I keep telling myself that a lot of the same people will have applied and been offered acceptances at places like Stanford, Princeton, Columbia, and Harvard, and so the lucky folks who have been accepted to more than one of these places will likely have to turn down at least one of them, if not more, potentially opening up spaces...but then again, I also don't know where I stand on these waitlists, so. Just know that you are not in the waitlist angsting alone.

Something else I'd like to ask -- does anyone have an idea whether positive contacts with professors in your area can influence your position on a waitlist once decisions have been made, or is there a fixed order in place now?

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According to the DGS of my master's program, it can't hurt to remind them how much you want to be there. He also suggested that if any faculty that you're close to know people at that school, it wouldn't be a bad idea to ask them if they might contact people for you. He's calling one of his friends on the admissions committee at the school where I'm waitlisted this week for me. So I really hope that works out!

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According to the DGS of my master's program, it can't hurt to remind them how much you want to be there. He also suggested that if any faculty that you're close to know people at that school, it wouldn't be a bad idea to ask them if they might contact people for you. He's calling one of his friends on the admissions committee at the school where I'm waitlisted this week for me. So I really hope that works out!

This. Some schools may be pretty methodical about the wait list, but I think it's important to make sure they know you would gladly accept an offer if they made one to you. Think of it from their perspective-- after finding themselves with an open slot, they may be more interested in offering that slot to somebody that's been in contact, that has (since notified of the waitlist) expressed that they are still very interested. Otherwise they risk the fact that they make an offer to somebody that THEY'VE heard crickets from since the waitlist notification (and who knows if they've accepted another offer since then?). I dont think that's always going to be the case, but as a rule of thumb I think you should definitely make sure they know you are still interested. You should also make an effort to check in routinely.

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According to the DGS of my master's program, it can't hurt to remind them how much you want to be there. He also suggested that if any faculty that you're close to know people at that school, it wouldn't be a bad idea to ask them if they might contact people for you. He's calling one of his friends on the admissions committee at the school where I'm waitlisted this week for me. So I really hope that works out!

Yeah, one of my recommenders used to work at one of the schools I'm waitlisted for, so she's getting in touch, and 2 of the schools said they'd be willing to help put me in touch w/ faculty/students in my area. My only question is, what do I SAY to them? Do I ask questions about the school and the program? Talk about my research? I obviously can't just repeat "please let me in!" a billion times over :)

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I just got wait-listed at my top choice. It's exciting and frustrating--you've been recommended for admission, but there isn't a spot for you! Argh. I think this will make it worse if I end up not getting in at all, but it does give me more hope about the apps I'm still waiting on, since obviously I am a good candidate!

Apparently at Austin, "about half" of recommended admits get first-round offers, while the other half WAITS. Since this particular wait-list is unranked, it all depends on the interests of the candidates who decline.

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