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Profile Eval for Statistics PhD program


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Hi all,


I was hoping to get some evaluation on my profile for the current application windows. Any input would be greatly appreciated. Here is my profile:


Undergrad Institution: One of the better schools in the CSU (California) system
Major(s): Mathematics
GPA: 3.31 (This is really low but my major GPA is high and my Master's degree GPA can hopefully make up for it)

Graduate Institution: Same as above
Major(s): Mathematics
GPA: 3.97

GRE Scores:
Q: 170 (98%)
V: 150
AW: 4.0

GRE Subject Mathematics Score: 790 (78%)


Research Experience: Master's thesis is in Combinatorics, so that's somewhat related to probability theory. Other than that none is really about statistics.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Putnam Exam score of 10 in years, 2 conference talks, President's List, Department's scholarship

Programming: R, C++, Python

Jobs: 3 years of Math tutor, grader, and Teaching Assistant where I get to teach my own class in Algebra I and II. Nothing statistics related though.

Letters of Recommendation: all 3 from math professors, one of which will be super good and another one should be really strong as well, the last one I'm sure will be better than average.

Stats Courses taken: Probability (B), Applied Statistics (B-), this is where I think will hurt me the most.

Proof-based courses: Grad level: Real Analysis I and II (A and A-), Complex Analysis I and II (both A's), Topology (A), Analytic Number Theory (A), Abstract Algebra I and II (both A's), Graph Theory (A), Combinatorics (A)

I got all A's in Multivariable Calculus and Linear Algebra. However I got a D in Abstract Linear Algebra (It was a long time ago before I started to get serious with college and I really regret it).


Right now I'm thinking of applying to UC Irvine, UC San Diego, Purdue, Michigan, Upenn, and Penn State.  Am I under aiming or over aiming any of these? Should I aim for any stronger place? I'm interested in Bayesian and Time Series analysis, but I'm open to Biostatistics too. I appreciate all the help!

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I think it looks good. Did you do any research in undergrad?

Also, linear algebra is often listed as a required/recommended course for statistics phd programs (along with analysis) so that might be cause for concern, but I think it should be okay if it was a long time ago and if you took graduate algebra classes in your master's program (which should cover linear algebra if it was along the lines of Dummit and Foote or something similar). 

I don't think you should be too worried about the stats courses since it seems like you have taken much harder courses and gotten good grades in those. Many (sometimes even the majority) phd students in statistics are actually math majors who don't have much in the way of stats courses beyond introductory ones they took in college anyways (at least, that's what I've seen). It seems like you fit that description. I think your math gre score is also a plus. You should get into at least a couple places in your list though I'm not sure how competitive the UC schools you listed are.

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@fluffyj Thank you for the response! I did not do any research in undergrad formally, but I did enjoy solving problems on mathematics journals (PME, CMJ, Math Horizons,...) and got plenty of correct solutions. I guess I will point that out in my SOP. Also we did use Dummit and Foote for Algebra, so I will definitely mention that. 

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