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Competitiveness for Stats Grad (Ms or Phd?)


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Hi everyone, thanks for taking a look!

I am graduating this spring with the intentions of applying to Stats grad school next fall.

I am trying to figure out where I would be a competative applicant, and what I can do in the next year to increase the merits of my application.

Undergrad: UCLA

Degree: Major - Statistics

GPA: 3.65/4.00, Stat GPA : 3.91/4.00

GRE: 170Q, 159V

Research: I worked in a psychology research lab for two years. In the beginning I did normal psychology student activities, but eventually I did data analysis, programmed experimental conditions, and became lead research assitant in a lab of 25 students.

I currently work under a stats professor doing data collection, manipulation, and basic neural network analysis.

I have extensive knowledge in multiple data handling languages ( R, Stata, SAS, Spss), and recently won a data competition (not sure this matters).

LOR: I have two strong letters (One Stats professor and One very well known Psych professor) , and one decent letter.

My biggest fear is that my grades in the intro math classes may hurt me. I flopped around majors as a freshman and ended up with a B+ in multivariable 1 and a C in multivariable 2. Would getting a masters first help prove that I can handle the math load?

I have since done very well in other courses with more demanding math, but I think this could be considered a red flag.

I would not mind staying at UCLA, but I'm having a tough time figuring out a list of schools to apply to(Penn state, NCSU, UCDavis ?).

I know that places like Berkley and Stanford would be quite a strech, so a list of a decent schools would be helpful.

Also is there anything that would really help my application that I could do over the next year?

Thanks for taking the time to read this and any advice you can offer!

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My Psych professor suggested this originally. Between my 2nd and 3rd year I switched from Psychology to Statistics. From the reading I did before, it seemed like quant psych closed quite a bit of doors outside of academia when compaired to statistics(But from what I understand, offers a decent number of professor positions).

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It doesn't close as many doors as you think (mind you I'm biased). Outside of academia there are lots of quant psych jobs for testing, actuary work, and market research. Plus you can work as a stats consultant for medical schools, business schools, and universities. (I think Chicago is looking for someone at the moment). I also have an econ major, so I've been moonlighting in the business world.

Anyway, it depends on what you want to do.

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Yea I may need to look into it again. I have taken 11 psych courses (including all quant psych related courses offered at my uni).

Do you know if Quant Psych is compairable to Biostats? Specifically, that it is a more specific feild of analysis focused on Psych studies or Bio studies.

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I would ask Peter Bentler, if you're still around UCLA campus. He was really helpful for my quanty questions. Or maybe I don't get what you're asking.

Are you asking if the relationship between quant psych and psychology is comparable to the relationship between biostats and biology? Or are you asking whether quant psych has it's own flavor of methodology?

Edited by Quant_Liz_Lemon
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Are you asking if the relationship between quant psych and psychology is comparable to the relationship between biostats and biology?

This was what I was getting at.

I will probably run by his office hours soon. Thank you for your input!

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