Jump to content
  • advertisement_alt
  • advertisement_alt
  • advertisement_alt

Programs that look at overall candidate and not just GPA/GRE


Recommended Posts

I would really appreciate anyone who can inform me as to what SPLH programs look at the overall candidates application and not reject them based on on GPA or GRE scores. Please let me know if this topic is posted under another thread.  Thank you for any responses!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Take a look at the post "Less Competitive Grad Programs." It is sooo helpful to see where students who maybe didn't have perfect GPAs and GREs applied. And the great thing is a lot of them received waitlists and even acceptances!

The ones that I can think of (and applied for) are: Grand Valley State, Eastern New Mexico, Univ of Central Arkansas (they accepted me and my stats are low, but I have some unique experiences that I'd like to think boosted my application), Fort Hays State, Kent State, Idaho State, Indiana State, etc.

Also, EdFinder on the ASHA website is a great resource. It lists the amount of applications a program received in their last application cycle, the amount of admission offers they gave out, how many students they ended up taking, and those students' average GPA and GRE range. This is super helpful because you can evaluate the odds of getting in. For example, if a school receives 500 applications and only takes a class of 15, those odds are terrible and I wouldn't waste the application fee. But if you find a program that receives around 150 applications and takes 35-40, those odds are much more favorable.

Do as much research as you can! Check out the post about less competitive programs and look up the stats for schools you'd be interested in on EdFinder, then make a list. Apply to as many as you can to broaden your chances. Email the program directors, explain your stats and situation, and ask how you can improve your application to be viewed as a stronger candidate for their program. Good luck!!! You got this ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a 3.09 cumulative GPA and got interviews, acceptances and wait lists! They clearly valued my life experiences/letters of recommendation/information beyond my academic performance. Check out the University of Maine (I believe they explicitly state on their website that they look at every student holistically - there is no GRE or GPA cut off), Utah State University, Pacific University, Arizona State University, Western Washington, and GVSU. 

 

General PSA, I wouldn't recommend PSU or U or Oregon - hah. :) 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I applied with a 3.5 and got into University of North Dakota (the faculty there are SO NICE, they def are looking at the person, not just the numbers), SUNY Plattsburgh, NYMC, and University of South Florida. I was asked to interview at Plattsburgh, NYMC, LIU Post, and College of St. Rose, and I was waitlisted at Eastern New Mexico University and University of South Alabama.

I chose to apply to these programs (except NYMC and USF, those were straight up reach schools) because I was hoping they would look at less competitive applicants. My gpa was average for this field, but I backed myself up with lots of extracurriculars, leadership, and TONS of work experience, plus I have decent GRE scores and good letters of rec. Honestly though, my SOPs were pretty average, didn't spend a whole lot of time on them, so take from that what you will. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had a 3.55 undergrad gpa (I realize that isn't horrible but it's not great), and a really, really bad GRE math score but I still got accepted and waitlisted as well. I only received one rejection. I agree that the experience you bring to the table is so important- volunteer if you can. I volunteered at a hospital, and then volunteered with a literacy program for high risk youth. Highlight your work experience and how it will benefit you in grad school and beyond. I think a really killer SOP can help you stand out as well. I know it can be intimidating on these forums to see people with such great stats, but try not to stress!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I applied with a 3.5 and got into University of North Dakota (the faculty there are SO NICE, they def are looking at the person, not just the numbers), SUNY Plattsburgh, NYMC, and University of South Florida. I was asked to interview at Plattsburgh, NYMC, LIU Post, and College of St. Rose, and I was waitlisted at Eastern New Mexico University and University of South Alabama.

I chose to apply to these programs (except NYMC and USF, those were straight up reach schools) because I was hoping they would look at less competitive applicants. My gpa was average for this field, but I backed myself up with lots of extracurriculars, leadership, and TONS of work experience, plus I have decent GRE scores and good letters of rec. Honestly though, my SOPs were pretty average, didn't spend a whole lot of time on them, so take from that what you will. 

 

What extracurricular and leadership activities we you involved with? ( If you don't ind sharing). I'm at the point where I'd like to get more involved in clubs but not sure what exactly to do.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a 3.09 cumulative GPA and got interviews, acceptances and wait lists! They clearly valued my life experiences/letters of recommendation/information beyond my academic performance. Check out the University of Maine (I believe they explicitly state on their website that they look at every student holistically - there is no GRE or GPA cut off), Utah State University, Pacific University, Arizona State University, Western Washington, and GVSU. 

 

General PSA, I wouldn't recommend PSU or U or Oregon - hah. :)

 

 

Hi why don't you recommend PSU or U of Oregon??  They are on my potential application list so i'd love some good information if you have it!  Feel free to PM me if you have time.  I'd love to hear any reviews positive or negative.  Any information counts  :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not sure about PSU, but I applied to UO this year. I chose it as more of a back up because I liked the program and wouldn't mind living in Oregon. Their acceptance rate according to EdFind was pretty high - over 30% - but I realize now that that's way off. Their applicant pool this year was 300+ for 25 spots. So yeah, not a good bet if you're worried about your stats. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow that is way off.  Thank you I will be crossing UO off my list right away with that percentage gap.  Have you seen that with a lot of schools and did you find out on their school's website or just as a result of applying there.  

 

Dang it, I hope that's not the case everywhere b/c 30% to 8% is a huge difference!  

 

Thank you for the information!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow that is way off.  Thank you I will be crossing UO off my list right away with that percentage gap.  Have you seen that with a lot of schools and did you find out on their school's website or just as a result of applying there.  

 

Dang it, I hope that's not the case everywhere b/c 30% to 8% is a huge difference!  

 

Thank you for the information!

 

Yep - and apparently PSU had around 600-700 (!!!!) candidates this year? I feel like when you have that many applicants, its very difficult NOT to create a high GPA or GRE cut off just to reduce the number of applications in review. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep - and apparently PSU had around 600-700 (!!!!) candidates this year? I feel like when you have that many applicants, its very difficult NOT to create a high GPA or GRE cut off just to reduce the number of applications in review. 

 

Omg that is insane!  This is going to sound totally selfish but who keeps advertising this major as one for everyone to pursue when it's so difficult to get into?   :blink:   Because I can't imagine it is plain old word of mouth.  I think they need to stop publishing those "this is a great job" articles haha.  Sorry just my 'i'm intimidated by those numbers' reaction.  

 

Glad i'm looking into this stuff now though!

 

Ruby were you not recommending due to the crazy amount of applications or anything specific about the program?  Goodness those numbers are stress inducing!  Ty

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Omg that is insane!  This is going to sound totally selfish but who keeps advertising this major as one for everyone to pursue when it's so difficult to get into?   :blink:   Because I can't imagine it is plain old word of mouth.  I think they need to stop publishing those "this is a great job" articles haha.  Sorry just my 'i'm intimidated by those numbers' reaction.  

 

Glad i'm looking into this stuff now though!

 

Ruby were you not recommending due to the crazy amount of applications or anything specific about the program?  Goodness those numbers are stress inducing!  Ty

 

Yeah crazy!! As soon as I heard that I was completely expecting a rejection, hah. I was mostly not recommending because as someone who relied very heavily on other aspects of my application (letters of rec, personal statement, work experience, volunteer experience, etc.), I felt like my application was probably not even looked at past my GPA/GRE at either of those schools just because of the high number of applicants. My GRE is pretty solid (except for my writing score), but my cum. GPA is 3.09 so I really needed schools to look at my application in it's entirety.  Of course I could be completely wrong and they could have looked at my stats and just not liked them, but from the schools that DO look at all materials I've received some very good offers and great funding!

 

As a side note, I've heard some less than ideal things about the current state of PSU's program, but I don't know anyone personally who has gone there/is currently attending so that could be completely inaccurate. 

Edited by rubyslp23
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rubyslp23 Where did you get interviews and acceptance offers? I got rejected from GVSU and the email stated they had 450 applications this year!!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I feel like maybe since everyone is hearing how competitive things are more ppl are applying to those "higher" percentage of acceptance schools.  Which makes everyone less likely to get it.  Now i'm wondering if those middle ground schools might be getting less applicants as people are becoming more aware of their odds.  Just got to do the best application I can I suppose and apply to schools I like and hope for the best!  

 

Man how exhausting to have to be strategic about everything.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What extracurricular and leadership activities we you involved with? ( If you don't ind sharing). I'm at the point where I'd like to get more involved in clubs but not sure what exactly to do.

On the surface, a lot of my extracurriculars aren't relevant to speech. I did NSSLHA for a semester because I knew I was "supposed to", but my chapter honestly just did bake sales to raise money for our speech-related charity, and I felt like that was a total waste of my time. Everyone was running around saying how being in NSSLHA looks so good on grad school apps, but in reality they were making fucking cupcakes and patting themselves on the back for "being involved" in our field. It felt like total bullshit to me, so I stopped going, and I didn't put anything about it on my grad school resumes/applications. 

 

With that said, I used my time to do things that I actually liked to do. I was involved in a sport club all four years of undergrad, and I was an officer for a year. That gave me my first taste of something leadership-y (I helped run practices, plan tournaments/games, etc). I became a mentor to SLP pre-majors, and was an orientation leader every year after my freshman year. Since my sophomore year I've been a tour guide at my school, and I used that to demonstrate that I have confidence and good communication/people skills (giving tours on a large campus is a lot harder than you think!!). In addition, last year I was a Resident Assistant, and this year I started working as a swim coach. 

 

None of those things are obviously related to being an SLP (except maybe the frosh mentor thing), but I learned a great deal about being responsible, compassionate and engaged, and my confidence went THROUGH THE ROOF because I learned how capable I was at doing all of these things that really scared me at first. Plus, I really liked what I was doing (at least most of the time, of course there were moments I was like "fuck this shit I have homework to do and I just wanna eat ice cream and watch netflix, not deal with this person or go to that meeting" :-P ) 

So I didn't have research experience, I was essentially not involved in NSSLHA, and I didn't do any work with special populations or learn a second language or work with kids (until I started coaching, but that didn't start till February, so none my schools knew about that unless I talked about it in interviews). But I still got accepted into 5 graduate programs (2 are in the top 30, another 2 in the top 100) with a 3.5 GPA (3.4 in-major). And its not like a stellar SOP got me in... I wrote a mediocre baseline one, tailored it a little to each prompt/school, but when I looked over it after I submitted my apps cringed a little because I probably should have spent more time on it . 

 

My advice: find things that you enjoy doing, but that still challenge you. If you can learn something from it and you think it's a good use of your time, go ahead and do it! Learning to balance your time between stuff you like to do and stuff you "have to do" is a very relevant skill to have in grad school. One of my interviewers actually straight up asked me what I do just for myself (i.e. not a "resume activity"), because everyone needs some "me time" budgeted in to take care of themselves in what can be a stressful program. If you can figure out how to do that during undergrad, you're golden. Everyone has a good GPA, so you need things to make yourself stand out. If you can get in on research or learn a new language or work with special populations or do an independent study in something speech-y, etc., GO FOR IT! But do it because you want to, not just because "it'll look good". 

Good luck next year!! :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I completely agree with the above poster^^^ Even things that aren't "relevant" to speech pathology show who you are as a person. I've been told that grad programs prefer to see maybe a few things you are really involved with/passionate about rather than 1000 things that you joined for the sake of looking involved. Haha, I had to laugh at jettip's comment about NSSLHA, because that's how I felt about being a member of my school's chapter too...I totally joined it because I knew it was THE thing to join. I got nothing out of it compared to other clubs and orgs I have been a part of. It' s unfortunate that the usefulness of clubs can change from year-to-year depending on the exec boards. 

 

I am an out of field applicant with a psychology and biology background so I have a lot of semi-related things I did as well. I got leadership experience from being an officer of an honor society and psychology club. It's nice to have at least one leadership experience to talk about, no matter what it is. I have other random things that I did for prolonged periods like a paid job editing papers, being a teaching assistant, a strong research background (most was behavioral pharmacology stuff with caffeine), a neuropsychological assessment internship, volunteering in a rehab hospital, and my current job where I work in a group home with individuals with intellectual and some communication disorders. I have a lot of random little things on my CV that I don't think are even worth mentioning in an interview since I don't have much else to say about them. These types of things were good to do, but I feel like I didn't put enough time into them to really talk about how they impacted me or allowed me to grow. I think a good rule of thumb is to get experience in things that interest you and also allow you show off some great personal attributes that made you awesome at whatever it was! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rubyslp23 Where did you get interviews and acceptance offers? I got rejected from GVSU and the email stated they had 450 applications this year!!!!

 

I got interviews at Pacific, Utah State, and GVSU (I declined the interview offer because I didn't have the time to travel to Michigan). I got accepted to U of Maine, Utah State, ASU, and MSUM with a wait list at Western Washington. Rejected from all Oregon schools. :) 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the surface, a lot of my extracurriculars aren't relevant to speech. I did NSSLHA for a semester because I knew I was "supposed to", but my chapter honestly just did bake sales to raise money for our speech-related charity, and I felt like that was a total waste of my time. Everyone was running around saying how being in NSSLHA looks so good on grad school apps, but in reality they were making fucking cupcakes and patting themselves on the back for "being involved" in our field. It felt like total bullshit to me, so I stopped going, and I didn't put anything about it on my grad school resumes/applications. 

 

With that said, I used my time to do things that I actually liked to do. I was involved in a sport club all four years of undergrad, and I was an officer for a year. That gave me my first taste of something leadership-y (I helped run practices, plan tournaments/games, etc). I became a mentor to SLP pre-majors, and was an orientation leader every year after my freshman year. Since my sophomore year I've been a tour guide at my school, and I used that to demonstrate that I have confidence and good communication/people skills (giving tours on a large campus is a lot harder than you think!!). In addition, last year I was a Resident Assistant, and this year I started working as a swim coach. 

 

None of those things are obviously related to being an SLP (except maybe the frosh mentor thing), but I learned a great deal about being responsible, compassionate and engaged, and my confidence went THROUGH THE ROOF because I learned how capable I was at doing all of these things that really scared me at first. Plus, I really liked what I was doing (at least most of the time, of course there were moments I was like "fuck this shit I have homework to do and I just wanna eat ice cream and watch netflix, not deal with this person or go to that meeting" :-P ) 

So I didn't have research experience, I was essentially not involved in NSSLHA, and I didn't do any work with special populations or learn a second language or work with kids (until I started coaching, but that didn't start till February, so none my schools knew about that unless I talked about it in interviews). But I still got accepted into 5 graduate programs (2 are in the top 30, another 2 in the top 100) with a 3.5 GPA (3.4 in-major). And its not like a stellar SOP got me in... I wrote a mediocre baseline one, tailored it a little to each prompt/school, but when I looked over it after I submitted my apps cringed a little because I probably should have spent more time on it . 

 

My advice: find things that you enjoy doing, but that still challenge you. If you can learn something from it and you think it's a good use of your time, go ahead and do it! Learning to balance your time between stuff you like to do and stuff you "have to do" is a very relevant skill to have in grad school. One of my interviewers actually straight up asked me what I do just for myself (i.e. not a "resume activity"), because everyone needs some "me time" budgeted in to take care of themselves in what can be a stressful program. If you can figure out how to do that during undergrad, you're golden. Everyone has a good GPA, so you need things to make yourself stand out. If you can get in on research or learn a new language or work with special populations or do an independent study in something speech-y, etc., GO FOR IT! But do it because you want to, not just because "it'll look good". 

Good luck next year!! :D

 

I completely agree with the above poster^^^ Even things that aren't "relevant" to speech pathology show who you are as a person. I've been told that grad programs prefer to see maybe a few things you are really involved with/passionate about rather than 1000 things that you joined for the sake of looking involved. Haha, I had to laugh at jettip's comment about NSSLHA, because that's how I felt about being a member of my school's chapter too...I totally joined it because I knew it was THE thing to join. I got nothing out of it compared to other clubs and orgs I have been a part of. It' s unfortunate that the usefulness of clubs can change from year-to-year depending on the exec boards. 

 

I am an out of field applicant with a psychology and biology background so I have a lot of semi-related things I did as well. I got leadership experience from being an officer of an honor society and psychology club. It's nice to have at least one leadership experience to talk about, no matter what it is. I have other random things that I did for prolonged periods like a paid job editing papers, being a teaching assistant, a strong research background (most was behavioral pharmacology stuff with caffeine), a neuropsychological assessment internship, volunteering in a rehab hospital, and my current job where I work in a group home with individuals with intellectual and some communication disorders. I have a lot of random little things on my CV that I don't think are even worth mentioning in an interview since I don't have much else to say about them. These types of things were good to do, but I feel like I didn't put enough time into them to really talk about how they impacted me or allowed me to grow. I think a good rule of thumb is to get experience in things that interest you and also allow you show off some great personal attributes that made you awesome at whatever it was! 

 

Thank you both! That was some excellent advice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.