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Mistakes you've made on your applications


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15 hours ago, stressed out sally said:

Oh my goodness - the fact that this topic even exists makes me feel better haha. I was thinking I had to be the only person who could do something so stupid as to make a mistake on such an important application.

After receiving two rejections in the last week (tear), I thought I would look over my SOP. 

HUGE MISTAKE. In the SOP I sent to all of the schools, I used the word "lead" instead of "led". And then in two of the SOPs, I somehow managed to delete the "s" from "this" when I was uploading. So, now I feel like all my hundreds of hours of prep and hard work are being flushed down the toilet for what look like careless mistakes. I had sooo many people review my SOP and then made a few changes before submission that, of course, had grammatical mistakes. UGHHHHH.

I made these EXACT mistakes! I applied to 12 schools, had at least 4 people other than my husband look over my SOP, and only caught it for the last three or so. But, I've been interviewed at almost all of the schools where I submitted the mistakes. @fuzzylogician is totally right - they're not going to disqualify you for little typos :) 

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Stop reading your application materials, people! You are torturing yourselves and there is nothing to gain. Typos and small mistakes (like basically ALL the things everybody has listed here) will NOT

I accidentally mailed a random receipt along with my SOP letter to the chair. He emailed me and asked what the receipt's purpose was. Thoroughly embarrassed.

@wongjcz Hello, I would like submit my application for a Pdf in social welfare.... as you can see, I've already received my .docx degree from Microsoft, and am currently working on getting my JPE

2 hours ago, ihatechoosingusernames said:

I made these EXACT mistakes! I applied to 12 schools, had at least 4 people other than my husband look over my SOP, and only caught it for the last three or so. But, I've been interviewed at almost all of the schools where I submitted the mistakes. @fuzzylogician is totally right - they're not going to disqualify you for little typos :) 

This makes me feel so much better. All hope is not lost yet!!! PHEW. 

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- Misspelled "assistantship" as "assistanceship" in my essays for financial aid.

- There's a gaping hole in my writing sample where I basically say a figure has the view that they literally wrote the book I'm analyzing to say they didn't. It'd be like if I'd said "Deep down, the story of Titanic is about staying together."

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Hoooo doggy there were so many.

The most heinous was probably that I left "Writing Sample: University of Virginia" at the top of the sample I sent to HARVARD

One I totally deserved: my roommate sent me her CV and I stole her format and filled in my own information. I neglected to realize until I'd sent in two applications that her last name was still on the header in the top corner of every page. 

I also learned too late that William and Mary's garbage history supplement doesn't allow you to copy and paste. I had to retype my whole statement into their box. Once I had closed the typing window and was about to send the pdf, I discovered I had made a typo that made me sound like a 1870s prospector, something like "I was pluggin in names to the census." I had to retype the whole thing AGAIN until 3AM. 

But I got in to UVA last week so I must have avoided coming across as a dumbass on that one. 

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I caught typos in two of my applications. One of them still interviewed me, and still waiting for a response on the other.

Somehow, despite checking my NYU application what seems like dozens of times, I failed to write the correct year I got my undergrad degree (wrote 2015, not 2014) and it said it was "in progress." Had to email that to them, although I submitted my transcript so they should know that it was an error. But still pretty sad that I failed to fix that.

 

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I copied a part of one of my statements from the time I applied to a Masters for my current PhD applications and put most of it in past tense... but I forgot to change a bit saying that I was doing an "ongoing" project in Brazil. And in case you're wondering,  of course it was the application for the PhD in the same place I'm currently doing the Masters.

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1 hour ago, iChris93 said:

Well, they still made me an admission offer today, despite my mistake.

Don't lose hope. Good luck!

There is hope!

Assuming you've used up all the hope now, are you willing to set some money aside from your TAships to fund a Hostel for rejected applicants?

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After submitting the applications through SOPHAS, I cannot change my CV anymore. Then I realized.....

1. The CV format is super ultra messy. My friend showed me his, and I regretted not asking him for help earlier... 

2. I could have written a better SOP. Is it just me like I have been editing SOP for twenty times but will never get satisfied?

3. One of my recommendation letter arrived more than two weeks after the deadline. Good job Professor :/  They cannot process my application if there is anything missing. I am very concerned that they will find enough qualified candidates before they process my application. 

I am in my last semester as an undergraduate, but I just cannot focus on reviewing for the exam tomorrow. Waiting for the results is driving me crazy.....

Edited by Wannie
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Lots of much needed lols from reading this thread, good stuff. Some mistakes I've made, sending an incomplete resume to a program, then after noticing it attempting to resend it, only to realize I forgot to attach the file to the email. Although that was to a general assistant to all the grad programs, so hopefully my program won't know how much of a tool I am lol. 

Another mistake...forgetting the question I was going to ask a professor during an interview as I was asking it and saying "I won't ask that one. I'm sorry" then asking the first random shitass question that popped into my head lol

Not realizing my zipper was open until after I was driving home from an interview....Okay that's a lie lol but imagine the horror!

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Putting this here because while the lol's are great in this thread, it hurts to see a lot of easily avoided email troubles. To that end:

If you use Gmail, there's a setting where you can give yourself an 'Undo' button after every email you send, for a period of up to 30 seconds. Nice way to grab back that email when you realize you spelled something wrong, forgot an attachment, or typed the wrong POIs name... :) 

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I think I screwed up my SOP. I wrote my objectives, two major research experience (one was related to my field, the other was my internship at a national lab), and why I am attracted to the program. I only used a 2-3 sentences to mention my POI there. The last paragraph was a concluding paragraph. 

I was sitting in front of my mac for many days, but could not improve my writing. The process made me really depressed, so I decided to submit my SOP as it was. I changed the paragraph in which I mentioned my POI and my interests for each school I applied for. But yeah. Only a little bit.  I did not know how to make this better.

Also, I did not contact most of my POIs. I did for a couple schools I was really interested. I am curious if you contacted all of your POI

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52 minutes ago, rosso0125 said:

Also, I did not contact most of my POIs. I did for a couple schools I was really interested. I am curious if you contacted all of your POI

I did not contact anyone aside from the admissions office. Not sure if that was a mistake or not....

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On February 11, 2016 at 9:24 PM, gelologist said:

Putting this here because while the lol's are great in this thread, it hurts to see a lot of easily avoided email troubles. To that end:

If you use Gmail, there's a setting where you can give yourself an 'Undo' button after every email you send, for a period of up to 30 seconds. Nice way to grab back that email when you realize you spelled something wrong, forgot an attachment, or typed the wrong POIs name... :) 

ARE. YOU. SERIOUS?!

this is a game changer.

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In my Skype interview for a PhD program I forgot the technical lingo for "the Trinity revealed in history" (i.e. the "economic" Trinity) for a good 30 seconds. They had to give it to me... I want to specialize in trinitarian theology... :wacko:

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I edited my CV many, many times to get the formatting to look just right because I wanted sections to have clean breaks between pages (rather than the next page having like two sentences from the previous section on it). When I recently looked back at it to print copies to take with me to an interview I realized that I had forgotten to change a line where I wrote about something and then said "(see pg. 5)" but I had actually deleted page 5 in my myriad of edits so that should have said "see pg. 4"... I was mortified. That CV was uploaded on all of my applications and referred to a page that was non-existent.

I also noticed that, in the first email I sent to my POI before sending applications, I wrote Dr. (First name) at the top instead of Dr. (Last name7. I think I meant to write both the first and last name but then forgot to write the last?? Or maybe I misread the name and thought the first was the last?? Ugh. I don't know what I was thinking but I didn't notice that until the POI replied to that email months later (they replied when I initially sent it but then they replied to that same email again later) to ask me for an interview. I was shocked that I was even given a chance after seeing that I made such a stupid mistake on my very first correspondence!

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On 2/11/2016 at 10:48 AM, 123hardasABC said:

I did not contact anyone aside from the admissions office. Not sure if that was a mistake or not....

I think it depends more on the departments/your field. I've asked multiple professors if I should contact any professors I'm interested in working with and received mixed answers. I've heard you shouldn't bother them, I've also been told however that it won't hurt and could help. In the end, I asked a very trusted professor of mine who knows several faculty members at different programs whether I should seek out professors and email them and he said not to worry about it. However, I'm an English/Rhetoric major, so it may be more common for STEM majors to contact professors. I feel like it wouldn't be a mistake not to though. Like imagine if they went through apps and were like, "ohhh did @123hardasABC send anyone an email? No, well nevermind we won't admit them." That would be pretty terrible.

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  • 2 weeks later...

My application was due on January 1st, I stupidly wrote in my SOP that I was starting an internship in the field in January 2015 and wrote the internship dates as 2015 on my resume as well.  That is the worst mistake of forgetting to write the new year that I have ever made. 

I was stressed about it and then I was accepted with funding.  So hooray! And I am sure that these review committees laugh at our mistakes right along with us.

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Now that I have finished the application process (in January) and am finally in the waiting period, I refuse to think about it. I do this for two reasons: 1) I can't go back and fix it now, and 2) I don't need any other reason to feel sick to my stomach. 

I've chosen to think that I've done my best and hopefully my best pays off. The waiting it a killer in itself though.

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I misspelled my current adviser's name while filling out the electronic letter of recommendation request form and couldn't change it... He thought it was funny, and I guess the school didn't notice/mind, because I was accepted.

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