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International student, low GPA, help!!


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Hello everone,

This is my first message in this forum. I'm an international student who wants to apply for a sociology Phd program in USA and Canada. My undergrad GPA is 2.8 and for upper-division 3 out of 4. My Master's sociology program GPA is 3.8. I'm taking GRE next week but I have not studied for it properly, so I'm expecing low results. My area of interests are ethnicity and class inequality, social stratification, labor sociology. I'm planning to apply for Emory, U of Washington and Binghamton in USA and York, Toronto and British Columbia in Canada. I'm looking for full funding and extra stipend. Do I have any chance with these schools? If not, can you offer me another school that I would have better chances?


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If you graduated from Bogazici, Koc, Sabanci, etc., check with your professors with American degrees; I bet they have a better idea of where you should aim than we would (because they know you). Where you have a good shot at depends partially on your GRE, but it also depends a lot more on the parts of the application we can't see (letters, writing sample, statement of purpose); just from your GPA's and your wide range of interests, it's pretty impossible to guess. It's also hard for people to guess how high masters GPA/low ugrad GPA is considered (people think the graduate school GPA is mainly what's looked at, but no one knows). It's also hard to know how non-American grades in generally are considered.

That's a pretty wide range of schools; I'd consider adding some more American schools. I don't know these areas well enough (and I can't quite tell what you're interested in) so I can't help. Consider rephrasing your question and reposting it: ask, maybe "What mid-level schools should I look at if I'm interested in ethnicity, class inequality, social strat, and labor sociology?" That might get more useful answers.

bol sanslar.

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I'm applying from Europe as well and the advice given to me was to make sure that my letter writters should have preferably be "well-known" in the states and able to translate my skills into an american context when writing my reference letter. I was also told to distinguish myself through the GRE/TOEFL (I thought 110+) since it could be hard to translate ECTS to A's and B's (for those reading my transcript).

The most positive thing I got was that my understanding of Europe and it's social issues might bring a real edge to my application, in terms of what I could be able to do as a researcher, and to try and let it shine through within my statement letters.

Regarding your grades in Canada, look at the requirements for Toronto to see where you stand:

Degree of Master of Arts (M.A.)

Applicants must have taken at least the equivalent of five full-year courses in Sociology and have a four-year B.A. or its equivalent. They must also have at least an overall B+ average in each of the last two years of post-secondary education. Applicants are also expected to have acquired basic research and statistical skills.

Degree of Doctor of Philosophy(Ph.D.)

An applicant must hold an M.A. degree in Sociology or a related field, and must have attained an overall average of at least A-. All students must demonstrate that their M.A., or equivalent, included course work equivalent to Classical Social Theory, Social Statistics, and Qualitative Methods I. If students do not have courses equivalent to those three courses, they will be required to take these courses in addition to the regular Ph.D. requirements.

Edited by cherub
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