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If rejected at a lower ranked program, do I have any chance at any of the higher ranked ones I applied to?


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I can't speak with any expertise on economics departments, but a rejection at a lower ranked school does not automatically herald rejections at higher ranked schools. "Fit" with the department in question is often dispositive, which leads to uneven results for individual applicants. Even if you believe your research interests align perfectly with the Econ faculty at Virginia, you shouldn't worry too much because it's only a single data point.

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Rank does not directly translate to acceptances and rejections.


For instance, I got into UNC-Chapel Hill (~#32), but I was rejected from Texas A&M (~#42) as well as USC (~#48).


Fit is also extremely important, and it even factors into the final decision. Personally, I'm considering picking a school that's on the verge of #60, instead of UNC, because I think the fit might be better.

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