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I am a graduate school student in Korea.

In Korea, there is no sufficient information about applying graduate school abroad.

So, I write some questions in The Gradcafe.


GRE : Verval 159/ Quant 160(writing score cannot be available now. Because I took GRE this saturday)

GPA : 3.7/4.0(undergraduate), 4.0/4.0(graduate)

Working experience : RA 2years

Presentation : MPSA 2012

Interest : voting behavior, Political Psychology, Ethnic Diversity, Latin American Politics


I know my GRE score or my experience are not impressive.

However, I don't have much time to retake GRE.

Since now, I want to prepare SOP and my writing sample.


my targeting university like this : 


University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
Washington University in St. Louis
Ohio State University
Cornell University
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Northwestern University
University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign
Emory University
Texas A&M University-College Station
Penn State University-University Park
University of Washington-Seattle
Michigan State University
Rice University
Stony Brook University-SUNY
George Washington University
University of Notre Dame
University of Virginia
Vanderbilt University
Florida State University
University of Pittsburgh
Brown University
University of Colorado-Boulder
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
University of Missouri-Columbia



However, I cannot be convinced that my list is plausible to be able to apply.
I think that my list have difficulty for my admission.
If there is no possibility to accept, I want to remove it.
And can you recommend any other programs?
Thank you! :)
* After receiving Lemeard's reply, I think that my point in this post is obscure, so my post is not understandable.
I want to ask you whether I would get into a program in my list or other programs.
Edited by hakawoo
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Dear Lemeard.


My english is not good. So my post make you confused.

I want to know whether there is possibility to be accepted by graduate school in my list.


If I eliminate in my list, which graduate school must be eliminate?


Thank you for your reply! :)

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Don't eliminate any of the graduate school. Only eliminate a school if you cannot afford to apply to that school or if you cannot afford to go to the school


Visit each school's website and find information for international students. The schools will explain how to apply and what you must do. Find the link for graduate students and look for international students. If you can't find a webpage explaining their requirements, you should contact the school's graduate college directly, via email, asking for information.


In most cases, you will have to pass a TOEFL exam. TOEFL, Test of English as a Foreign Language, is a test of your proficiency with English. Universities will require that you have a certain amount of fluency in English because without it, you cannot succeed in an English speaking program. Some universities will require the TOEFL before accepting you; others will require it after they admit you, but you cannot register for classes without passing it. ETS, who also does the GRE, does TOEFL testing. You will find information on the TOEFL on the ETS website. Each university website will have information on what your minimum scores on the TOEFL should be.

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Don't eliminate any of the graduate school. Only eliminate a school if you cannot afford to apply to that school or if you cannot afford to go to the school



I second this. It is a good idea to apply to a wide variety of schools regardless of your stats (research interests permitting), but especially important if you feel that some part of your application may be weak. 

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There is some non-zero probability that you will get into each of the schools on that list. Aside from the faculty members who frequent this forum, there isn't anyone who will be able to tell you just how large or small these probabilities are relative to each other. Applying broadly will maximize your chances of getting in somewhere but at a cost of close to $100/application when you factor in sending GREs, this can get pricey in a hurry. 


That said, if you follow NBM's advice I'm pretty sure you will narrow it to a smaller number. If I had to go back and apply again, I'd have a pretty darn hard time coming up with more than 8 or 10 schools that I'd really want to attend.

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I agree that you should only apply to schools that you know you would genuinely be happy attending.   But I will also add that it is important to be respectful if you are asking professors to submit 15+ letters of recommendation for you.  Set up your online applications very early so that they have more than enough time to log in and take care of it at their own pace without feeling rushed.

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