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low AWA score? is it a big problem


sing8013
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Hi folks,

I'm a working chemical engineer with

M.S. from mediocre US university (GPA -3.84), 2005

B.E. from reputed institute in India (7.36/10), 1998

4 research + 1 industrial publication

* One paper got awarded.

several other conference papers + presentations

plus good and diverse experience (4 yrs) in design, research and operations with chemical processes (mainly biofuels)

pursuing for PhD (ChemE) from one of the top university is my long-lasting wish...

Ok..here is the problem,

I recently appeared for GRE (as my old GRE were scores were expired, > 5yr)

-- without much preparation especially without any prep in AWA

Q: 800

V:560

AWA: 3.0 (I can't believe I got that low of score)

Do you think can this low AWA score would disqualify me or make acceptance chances very dim?? or would you advise me to retake the GRE.

With my profile, Do I stand a chance in top 10 schools?/ how about...

- UC Berkeley

- U Minnesota

- Rice U

- Princeton

Any suggestions or comments will be appreciated...

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There are a lot of older threads regarding frustration with the AW section. I scored a 3.5 and a 4.0 last year, although I have been published twice (once by one of the most prestigious companies in the field). I wish I could say that schools have the good sense to overlook this, but the truth is, if they find funding in a school-wide pool, the GRE is the only standard of comparison. For this reason, these types of schools will look at your qualifications only after they have decided that your scores are competitive enough to get funding.

Through my experience last year, I can tell you that includes most of the larger, big-name schools like several of the Ivy League schools, U of Chicago, as well as several of the big state schools like the U of California schools and UNC-Chapel Hill.

Best of luck!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Recently I contacted a professor at Cornell and he encouraged me to apply and mentioned that will have positions available in his lab.

I specifically asked that if I stand chance to get admit (with my low GRE scores), he replied YES.

Do you think a department can deny my application, if my GRE scores don't satisfy thier cut-off scores?

Please advise if should re-take the AWA part of my GRE. Thanks

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Recently I contacted a professor at Cornell and he encouraged me to apply and mentioned that will have positions available in his lab.

I specifically asked that if I stand chance to get admit (with my low GRE scores), he replied YES.

Do you think a department can deny my application, if my GRE scores don't satisfy thier cut-off scores?

Please advise if should re-take the AWA part of my GRE. Thanks

Is it possible to retake only the AWA part of the GRE?

In any case, I believe that they have cut-offs only the for the verbal and quant sections. I've seldom seen an AWA cut-off but I'm sure 3.0 is a bare minimum even if they do. That said, I think if the rest of your application is strong and if you got a positive feedback from a prof at Cornell, you really shouldn't bother about the GRE. Concentrate on the other aspects. If they have positions available at their lab, they will have sufficient funding too. They won't have to look at your AWA score to decide if they should give you money! Just my opinion..

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