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Hi all! I'm a hopeful applicant for PhD programs for Fall 2017 in social work. Thought I'd start this thread to see who else is in the same boat!
 

A little background:

I graduated from UNC's MSW program in 2013 and have been working as an outpatient clinician since this time. I'm EMDR and intensively DBT trained and am licensed in clinical social work and substance abuse and my research interests are primarily in the field of substance abuse and trauma. I'm looking around for schools in the southeast due to some family reasons but am open to other programs that would be a good fit with my interests. Just took the GRE yesterday and got a Verbal: 162 Quant: 152. Pretty mediocre but hopefully acceptable somewhere!! SO far I'm thinking UGA, UNC, VCU, University of Maryland

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HI 

I am also applying for PhD in 2017. I must say that the application process is a lot of work. 

I graduated with Masters and a Bachelor from a university in Singapore. Had five years of social work practice and past few years I was working as research project coordinator for my professor. I am looking at various schools such michigan, chicago, UNC etc. Choice of these schools is because they have faculty members interested in my research interest. 

My GRE is V164 Q158. Writing score is not out yet. 

Hope you can complete your application in time! It is almost suicidal to do it :P 

 

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Haha, it hasn't been so bad! Applications aren't due until January but I'm trying to get mine in in December. I've almost finished my personal statement and have identified LOR, so what's left is to send in my scores and complete the actual online portion of the applications.

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Hi guys!

I am also applying to hopefully start this Fall 2017 in a PhD SW program. My GRE scores are not the best, but I am hopeful with the other application materials. As of right now, I am looking a few schools, Uni. of WA, Berkeley, USC, and NYU. As of right now, I am just waiting for my letters of rec to be submitted. I hope we all receive good news in the next couple of months.

I feel like the application process is like a test of our ability to show them we really want this. LOL.

<3

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Welcome!! So nice to hear from somebody else :) My scores are also not the best so no worries. I probably should have retaken it for the math but it was what I could manage at this moment with balancing the work demands of my job. Right now I keep polishing and repolishing my personal statement and writing sample and am planning to submit everything to UNC and USC this weekend. VCU's application is not due until February and I have a visit planned so I'm going to wait to submit until after that just in case I learn some information about the program that would be helpful to include in my application.

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On 12/1/2016 at 8:54 AM, parsneezy said:

Welcome!! So nice to hear from somebody else :) My scores are also not the best so no worries. I probably should have retaken it for the math but it was what I could manage at this moment with balancing the work demands of my job. Right now I keep polishing and repolishing my personal statement and writing sample and am planning to submit everything to UNC and USC this weekend. VCU's application is not due until February and I have a visit planned so I'm going to wait to submit until after that just in case I learn some information about the program that would be helpful to include in my application.

 

So you're not submitting for USC's priority deadline on Dec 1st? And you're right, I should have studied and retaken it, but work is too demanding. But let's be hopeful! I also plan to visit UW too but the visit was after the app deadline so I submitted it.

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Hello All!

I am a current MSW Candidate at Penn (SP2), graduating from that program this coming May. I've also finished the application cycle for a PhD in Social Welfare (Penn & Columbia). Good luck to you all, and I hope the application deadlines are all made easily.

Edit** 162 V, 154 Q, 4.5 AW; 3 years research experience (multi-labs); 2 publications + 2 in review; 11 invited conference presentations. UG GPA: 3.96; Grad GPA: 4.0

Edited by SocialResearcher

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So you're not submitting for USC's priority deadline on Dec 1st? And you're right, I should have studied and retaken it, but work is too demanding. But let's be hopeful! I also plan to visit UW too but the visit was after the app deadline so I submitted it.

 

On lord you just scared me to death. I meant the University of South Carolina's program- the name gets confusing! Can't really call it USC or Carolina because those names are taken :)

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yeah dont worry abt the GRE. It is really your overall profile and how it fits in with what the sch may want :) 

 

@parsneezy UNC's early deadline is either 13th or 15th Dec - so pls dont miss it! They really have a good program.  

what is VCU btw? 

@flowerthor hope you get your references in soon. I had to repeatedly remind my professors to do it and it does not help that this period is exams 

just curious, do you all only target schools who have faculty members whose interests are similar to yours? 

 

 

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@Ggsk I sent my application in on Tuesday! I'm nervous but honestly I do not expect to get in. They are heavily, heavily research focused and my post graduate experience has been in direct practice, so all my research is super old. Still, I liked the MSW program and have been in contact with a professor with similar research interests so it can't hurt to apply.

 

VCU: Virginia commonwealth university

 

So I looked at schools in the southeast only because my parents are getting old and I don't want to be too far away from them just in case something happens, but all the schools I applied to have faculty members with similar research interests. I made sure to reach out to at least one person per school and have visited schools when possible.

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hey parsneezy 

I think you do stand a good chance since you have studied at UNC and knows a professor. It would help you greatly I'm sure ...at least in making you stand out. 

I have completed my applications and I am so happy about it not because I am super confident but because I can get on with life and holidays. 

I am looking only at schools with professors with similar interests. 

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Hey there! I'm only applying to BC's MSW/PhD 5 year combo program but was wondering if anyone would be willing to chance me on odds of getting in! 

The good: 
3.986 GPA undergrad
Honors College Membership contingent upon maintaining 3.2 all semesters; extra classes required for graduation 
Chancellor's Scholarship undergrad - contingent upon maintaining 3.5, full ride to (public) uni 
Dean's List at summa cum laude every semester enrolled 
Provost's Certificate -- for maintaining 3.9 GPA every semester enrolled 
Independent Honors Thesis -- aka new research and not secondary data analysis/offshoot of main project in the lab 
2 pubs, one out, one under review, on a couple of presentations and have more projects coming down the pike  
Worked 20-40 hours a week between two research labs as an undergrad (one paid, one volunteer/one semester of credit) for two years, continue to volunteer in side lab
1 year of "full-time" research experience as lab manager (not like I was already doing full time hours between the two labs during undergrad but w/e...)
180 hour clinical internship working in a crisis stabilization unit + 8 months per diem work  
Gonna get three absolutely stellar letters of recommendation 
Have connections to two of my POIs from my labs 

The Meh: 
Went to public uni that's not always well-regarded  
I'm a baby by some people's standards (22) which my side-lab director mentioned was a huge turn-off for him because people fresh from undergrad don't know what they want to do with their lives and waste grant money if/when they drop out -- addressing this directly because aside from changing my mind on BS vs BA I haven't at all wavered in what I've wanted to do with my life since senior year of high school - if nothing else I'm stubborn as hell and won't stop until I do what I came to do. 
Have a rare disability that manifested in middle school that wasn't treated properly until late HS (highlighted this in my personal statement/statement of purpose because it's part of the reason why I'm so interested in adolescence & health psych). 

The Ugly: 
GRE scores... I did much worse this year than last (144 vs 142 Q, 158 vs 156 V, 4.5 vs 5.5A) but hit "send all scores" the day of. Likely the result of: a) extreme test anxiety because I know the GRE is really make-it-or-break-it for a lot of schools,  b ) My math skills outside of stats are absolutely abysmal because I had to literally teach myself math in high school (still managed to get nothing less than C's-- mostly A's and B's then) -- I'd miss months of school at a time and would get "home tutoring" from people who were just as lost as I was, c) I had the flu the day I took it and didn't have the $$$ or time to retake it. 
Got a B+ in stats during undergrad -- because our prof gave everyone in the class the wrong directions for how to run SPSS so all of our labs were incorrect; half the class withdrew before the deadline and half of the remaining folks just stopped showing up; prof was an adjunct and was fired after that semester because of that class, but combined with the perception of "[insert uni]'s so easy you'd have to be really dumb to get less than an A" I can see why PIs would see this as a red flag combined with abysmal GRE scores. Most of my work has been with qual projects but I'm doing more quant stuff now that I can talk about IF I get an interview. 

Thanks in advance for the help! 

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On 12/7/2016 at 5:33 AM, Ggsk said:

yeah dont worry abt the GRE. It is really your overall profile and how it fits in with what the sch may want :) 

 

@parsneezy UNC's early deadline is either 13th or 15th Dec - so pls dont miss it! They really have a good program.  

what is VCU btw? 

@flowerthor hope you get your references in soon. I had to repeatedly remind my professors to do it and it does not help that this period is exams 

just curious, do you all only target schools who have faculty members whose interests are similar to yours? 

 

 

Just got all of my letters of references on Thursday! Now the waiting game ?. Most of the schools I applied to had professors with the same/similar research interests. But I decided to apply to as many schools as I feel, fit me and where I would want to spend the next 5+ years. I visited UW last Friday and man.... I wish it was February already. 

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On 12/16/2016 at 7:51 PM, academicbirb said:

Hey there! I'm only applying to BC's MSW/PhD 5 year combo program but was wondering if anyone would be willing to chance me on odds of getting in! 

The good: 
3.986 GPA undergrad
Honors College Membership contingent upon maintaining 3.2 all semesters; extra classes required for graduation 
Chancellor's Scholarship undergrad - contingent upon maintaining 3.5, full ride to (public) uni 
Dean's List at summa cum laude every semester enrolled 
Provost's Certificate -- for maintaining 3.9 GPA every semester enrolled 
Independent Honors Thesis -- aka new research and not secondary data analysis/offshoot of main project in the lab 
2 pubs, one out, one under review, on a couple of presentations and have more projects coming down the pike  
Worked 20-40 hours a week between two research labs as an undergrad (one paid, one volunteer/one semester of credit) for two years, continue to volunteer in side lab
1 year of "full-time" research experience as lab manager (not like I was already doing full time hours between the two labs during undergrad but w/e...)
180 hour clinical internship working in a crisis stabilization unit + 8 months per diem work  
Gonna get three absolutely stellar letters of recommendation 
Have connections to two of my POIs from my labs 

The Meh: 
Went to public uni that's not always well-regarded  
I'm a baby by some people's standards (22) which my side-lab director mentioned was a huge turn-off for him because people fresh from undergrad don't know what they want to do with their lives and waste grant money if/when they drop out -- addressing this directly because aside from changing my mind on BS vs BA I haven't at all wavered in what I've wanted to do with my life since senior year of high school - if nothing else I'm stubborn as hell and won't stop until I do what I came to do. 
Have a rare disability that manifested in middle school that wasn't treated properly until late HS (highlighted this in my personal statement/statement of purpose because it's part of the reason why I'm so interested in adolescence & health psych). 

The Ugly: 
GRE scores... I did much worse this year than last (144 vs 142 Q, 158 vs 156 V, 4.5 vs 5.5A) but hit "send all scores" the day of. Likely the result of: a) extreme test anxiety because I know the GRE is really make-it-or-break-it for a lot of schools,  b ) My math skills outside of stats are absolutely abysmal because I had to literally teach myself math in high school (still managed to get nothing less than C's-- mostly A's and B's then) -- I'd miss months of school at a time and would get "home tutoring" from people who were just as lost as I was, c) I had the flu the day I took it and didn't have the $$$ or time to retake it. 
Got a B+ in stats during undergrad -- because our prof gave everyone in the class the wrong directions for how to run SPSS so all of our labs were incorrect; half the class withdrew before the deadline and half of the remaining folks just stopped showing up; prof was an adjunct and was fired after that semester because of that class, but combined with the perception of "[insert uni]'s so easy you'd have to be really dumb to get less than an A" I can see why PIs would see this as a red flag combined with abysmal GRE scores. Most of my work has been with qual projects but I'm doing more quant stuff now that I can talk about IF I get an interview. 

Thanks in advance for the help! 

I feel dual MSW/PhD are more competitive but don't stress about. I wish I could tell you "yes you're definitely getting in" or "nope, not a chance" cause I wonder the same thing too with my application.... But I can say that it doesn't hurt to just apply. That's what I told myself 5 years ago when I was applying for a Masters program (fresh out of undergrad) and now I can say, I'm  so glad I applied! Good luck! 

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22 hours ago, flowerthor said:

Just got all of my letters of references on Thursday! Now the waiting game ?. Most of the schools I applied to had professors with the same/similar research interests. But I decided to apply to as many schools as I feel, fit me and where I would want to spend the next 5+ years. I visited UW last Friday and man.... I wish it was February already. 

 

UW is nice but i didnt apply becos i could not find a faculty member with similar interests. What are your top choices?

So much $$ and time spent on doing this. Hope something good comes out of it. 

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So has anyone gotten any replies so far? haha prob still waiting...waiting ... waiting 

Masters applicants are getting replies already. 

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I have not! Most of my official deadlines were not until January 15, 2017 so I'm not expecting anything until February even though I've turned in all of my applications. Arghh it's so hard to wait though!

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On 1/9/2017 at 10:07 PM, Ggsk said:

So has anyone gotten any replies so far? haha prob still waiting...waiting ... waiting 

Masters applicants are getting replies already. 

1

 

On 1/10/2017 at 11:05 AM, parsneezy said:

I have not! Most of my official deadlines were not until January 15, 2017 so I'm not expecting anything until February even though I've turned in all of my applications. Arghh it's so hard to wait though!

 

 

NOPE...and the wait continues...LOL. It is frustrating yet exciting to see all those MSW acceptances. However, I did receive this email from U of WA.

Screenshot_20170108-075839.png

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UPDATE: USC has notified applicants of their decision for the DSW program. Friend of a friend got accepted. 

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Found this in last year's application round 

University of Southern California: Applicants were invited for in-person interviews between Feb 4th and Feb 21st. Most were contacted early Feb.

Boston College: Applicants were invited to attend a Skype or phone interview as early as Jan 9th and as late as Feb 12th, and notified of their acceptance Feb 13th-Feb 22nd.

University of Michigan (Joint PhD and Social Science/Social Work PhD): Applicants were accepted Feb 15th-21st

University of Chicago (AM/PhD): Applicants were accepted Feb 7th-Feb 13th

University of Wisconsin-Madison: Applicants were accepted Jan 24th-Jan 31st, but data was sparse (only 2 results were found)

Anyone applying to these schools? 

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On 1/13/2017 at 4:16 PM, flowerthor said:

UPDATE: USC has notified applicants of their decision for the DSW program. Friend of a friend got accepted. 

Are you talking about USC PhD program? Have they already notified applicants of the decision?

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15 hours ago, Ggsk said:

Found this in last year's application round 

University of Southern California: Applicants were invited for in-person interviews between Feb 4th and Feb 21st. Most were contacted early Feb.

Boston College: Applicants were invited to attend a Skype or phone interview as early as Jan 9th and as late as Feb 12th, and notified of their acceptance Feb 13th-Feb 22nd.

University of Michigan (Joint PhD and Social Science/Social Work PhD): Applicants were accepted Feb 15th-21st

University of Chicago (AM/PhD): Applicants were accepted Feb 7th-Feb 13th

University of Wisconsin-Madison: Applicants were accepted Jan 24th-Jan 31st, but data was sparse (only 2 results were found)

Anyone applying to these schools? 

 

Man, seems like February it is then. Good luck everyone.

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3 hours ago, yourruth said:

Are you talking about USC PhD program? Have they already notified applicants of the decision?

No, their DSW program. Just thought I share about that.

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So I just got a verbal acceptance to UNC!! Paperwork is pending but I spoke with a professor and have been offered a fellowship. I can't believe it and am completely in shock!! I honestly almost did not apply because I assumed I would not get in.

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4 hours ago, parsneezy said:

So I just got a verbal acceptance to UNC!! Paperwork is pending but I spoke with a professor and have been offered a fellowship. I can't believe it and am completely in shock!! I honestly almost did not apply because I assumed I would not get in.

Hi good to hear that. Congratulations! :) v happy for u. I got an interview with unc too. Hope it turns out well. 

If I get in, we would be classmates. Haha

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