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How many MSW programs should I apply to?


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I'm a senior at the University of Michigan applying to MSW programs and I'm trying to decide how many I should apply to. 

I currently have a 3.166 overall GPA (3.4 psychology) but with an 3 credit A+ this term and 14 credits in the fall I plan to get A's in it should go up to at least a 3.2. 

I have some experience volunteering this summer and I'll be volunteering at 3 places this fall and I'll have a year or so of research experience in one lab (which also includes human service ex: running a clinic). This summer I volunteered in a lab running participants in experiments and will be working in another this fall transcribing interviews on sexual assault in college. I have fairly strong writing skills. 

I am planning to apply to 4 in-state schools: University of Michigan (1), Wayne State (38), Michigan State (32), and Western (71). 

I've compiled a list of out of state schools I'm interested in along with their ranking and cost that I'll list here in case anyone has any insight into the programs there: 

(3) University of Washington: $33,732. 

(10) Boston College: $35,520. 

(10) University of Pittsburgh: $30,540. 

(12) Boston University: $33,280. 

(12) University of Wisconsin - Madison: $25,314. 

(17) University of Illinois: $29,238. 

(17) University of Maryland - Baltimore: $35,000. 

(22) Fordham University: $27,210. 

(22) Rutgers University: $28,656. 

How many would you apply to if you were in my position?

Thanks!!

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I wouldn't apply to move than five schools. The applications are similar enough that writing several essays might not be as stressful as it seems. But I personally don't have the patience for a large number of applications. I'd do 2 "reach" schools, 2 "shoo-ins", 1 "safety". I put those in quotes because admissions can be unpredictable and it all depends on the strength of your application. Unless you write an absolutely terrible personal statement, you are bound to get into at least one program, if not all of them.

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Five maximum should be good. I would definitely try to stay in-state as well, since tuition is cheaper.

I planned on applying to two schools, but only applied to one because I was accepted to my first choice before getting the second application in.

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Ugh I spent like 7 hours working on my SOP today. It's UCLAs and they ask you to cram a lot into 3 double space pages. Anyways, I'm applying to 3 cal states and UCLA, think I'm just going to not bother with USC, even if I got in and got a ride I'm not a big fan of private schools like SC.

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5 hours ago, BackNSchool83 said:

Ugh I spent like 7 hours working on my SOP today. It's UCLAs and they ask you to cram a lot into 3 double space pages. Anyways, I'm applying to 3 cal states and UCLA, think I'm just going to not bother with USC, even if I got in and got a ride I'm not a big fan of private schools like SC.

UCLA application is hard! I wrote my SOP but decided against applying. I was grateful for the practice though, it is a great way to flex your writing skills. 

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