I beg you to please rate me


<p>I am interested in a Political Science PhD program, I have really poor statistics. I plan to visit the schools to which I want to apply and talk to people there personally as I am really set on these schools and would not consider anyone else for my schools of choice. Please note that I am interested in these schools not just for what they offer in political science but in other areas too.</p>

<p>My schools of interest are MIT, Caltech, Harvard, and University of Chicago in that order. Here are my horrible statistics.</p>

<p>University of Chicago, BA, Mathematics, 2.6, cGPA2.7
Courant Institute NYU, MS Mathematics, GPA 3.2 and will be much better after I finish my program, I am working really hard now.<br>
GRE: 800M/540V/5W and I worked very hard on the verbal, i will study harder and can lift it higher than a 650</p>

<p>I know you're asking, how did you get into Courant, but it was just luck, I am actually no where near as bad as my GPA may suggest in Math, I was a slacker in College, though I worked hard enough to get a 4.0 from any state school, just wasn't enough work for Chicago. Yeah, Chicago ruins your GPA. I have a lot of teaching/tutoring experience, but no research in Poli Sci, plus, as you can see, I will have two Math degrees and very little to no political science, so, what can I do to help that, I plan to cross register for one Poli sci course this semester, but its going to be a game theory class not much to do with actual political science, I welcome all suggestions and I will do anything and everything in my power to get into Caltech or MIT, I have been dreaming of those two schools for ages and I could benefit a great deal from being around in that kind of an atmosphere. Please help, and I am not looking for anyone to tell me I will be fine to be nice, be brutally honest as I can benefit from a constructive criticism than from a good gesture. As much as I hate to make this a factor and as much as I am opposed to AA, everyone loves shortcuts, and so, I am black, which was part of the reason why I slacked at chicago because I thought I can get away with murder but I am extremely hard working now, at times learning things I did not learn well while at chicago all over again here at Courant, and my 3.2 GPA at courant is only due to a bad first course where I took the class before I made good work adjustments.</p>

<p>Take as many political science courses as you can so that you can understand what field you really want to go into. Seeing as you wanted criticism, don't set your heart on specific schools. According to most sources a life in academia rarely grants you extensive choice in where you study/teach. The positive side of your application will be that you (seem to) have a solid background in quant, which is becoming more and more necessary to be a productive (research-wise) political science professor. Moreover, you really cannot say for certain whether or not you will be able to raise your GRE Verbal by 100 pts. As far as fields go, you may be suited for Political Economy, and other sub-fields that are more quant based. However, you know your own interests better than I. The biggest suggestion I can make is for you to take political science courses (in some capacity), and see which fields you like. Talking to the professors in those classes will of course help. I hope this helps (and that nothing I have said comes off as overly harsh or judgemental), and good luck.</p>

<p>Dear Milton, </p>

<p>Thank you sooo very much for your suggestions, I take them to heart, and by no means were you harsh in your suggestions. I think you are right, unfortunately NYU is too expensive for me to pay for more courses than just the Math courses I am taking, but city college is cheap and so, I might register for morning classes at City in Political Science and figure out which area interests me most. While I like Theoretical aspects to be supported with Math in my future studies, I don't necessarily want to study political science in an attempt to immerse myself in poli sci. I am sure that I clearly come across as not having enough knowledge of poli sci and thats not too far from the truth. Tell me about yourself and how you know what you know about Poli Sci. Any other suggestions also very welcome.</p>

<p>P.S. Do you think that the fact I went to good Math departments will have much say, and will a political Science dept even know what Courant is?</p>

<p>I'm not quite sure what to suggest because you haven't listed any area(s) of interest in the field and haven't presented any kind of argument as to why these particular schools interest you. Not surprising, really, considering Caltech doesn't even have a political science Ph.D. program...</p>

<p>That was an especially helpful post kigali. With members like you I'm sure we won't need this forum anymore as your infinite wisdom should suffice to answer everyone's questions. </p>

<p>My knowledge (which is limited) comes from my own interest in graduate studies in political science. Enrolling in the City classes would not be a bad idea so you can better grasp what it is you want to do. Talk to the professors in those classes. They know far more than most of us on this forum. You may want to consider either Formal Theory ( Using mathematics to help explain political phenomena, using Game-Theory, Rational Choice models) or Political Economy if you're interested in a more quantitative field of political science.</p>

<p>So, kigali made a great point: why political science PhD? Why the change from math to PhD? Why enroll in the Courant program when you want to go PhD? Recent decision or long-term plan? </p>

<p>This will help the community to suggest good schools for you to apply for, not just the big name ones, but the publicly lesser-known, but in the field well-known places would probably also be good for you to be aware of.</p>

<p>hey guys, thank you sooo very much for your feedback. Its great that there are people like y'all who take the time to share their knowledge. Actually, the note about caltech not having a Poli Sci program is not correct. They have a program whereby you can do comprehensive cross-field study thats open to the student, so, if one's choice is that of political science, its possible to do it that way. Its not sooo much for the name of the schools, but its the atmosphere, not big on Harvard, but the others, i really like. As for Courant, yeah, I am in the program because I absolutely love Math, I love Math so much so that it would hurt me if I parted way with it before I study it at least at the masters level. So, thats my reasoning and I am loving studying Math at Courant. Also, at Chicago, which is a great and terrible school in many ways, i did not do my best, so I figured, if I can go to a very good program and do well, which I am doing now, or at least relatively speaking, I thought that would give any PhD program a better idea of my Math abilities than my Chicago transcript would. Why Phd, I am going to sound like an Idiot, but though not in the states, I have political ambitions, and so, exposure to political science is definitely better than continuing with Math. Plus, I want something thats more in the real world than the theoretical math i have been studying since i started college. Also, while I maybe good enough to go for a PhD in Math, I am not good enough, and just can't make the adjustment in time to be good enough to go to a top 10 school. I work at an elite private tutoring agency, and I had a conversation with a parent today where her student is in regular 10th grade Math, and getting As and her mom said, I wish that I had pushed her to be in harder Math. And I had to be honest and say, though colleges tell you they would rather see you in harder courses and struggle than As in regular Math, they don't believe that, and its all about the As. So, the analogy here is, though I understand that there are incredibly smart and good people at Schools that are not so well known, and thats not a doubtful by any means, it is obviously so much easier with job prospects or resume to be at the top schools whenever possible. So, I have my heart set at those schools, and I just want to work as hard as I can and give it a shot. I have 3 years to get it right, I will apply this year, and then, apply two more times. Clearly, I will have a much better idea in my subsequent applications and will have more courses. If you all have suggestions about not applying too many times or if that is in anyway a bad idea, please don't hesitate to tell me. Thank you all sooo very much for your feedback again.

<p>Can you also please tell me if working really hard and improving my GRE verbal is a necessity, In addition, any advices on if it would help much to take the GRE Math Subject test though I am not applying to Math PhD. I mean, how much more can that say than an MS degree from Courant. Clearly, I can't wipe away bad grades at Chicago with just a test or two, and they would assume that I would have a great Math score as a Math major anyway. So as to not give you a bad impression though, about 75% of my Math grades were B's at Chicago. Well, ok, thank you very much for all your feedback again!</p>

<p>Generally employment in Mathematics is not as hard to come by as other fields in academia. You do not necessarily need to go to a top program to find a good position (although it does help). If you really like mathematics then it may not be ideal to give it up for a field that is somewhat removed from its style of thinking (although Formal Theory, and Political Economy do use a good deal of math, and it is somewhat more applied). However, if you believe fulfilling your political ambitions would provide you with a more satisfying career/ life then going into academic political science may not be the best route. Instead you may want to evaluate employment in some kind of policy research organization that will let you apply the mathematics you know now, while still interacting with others in politics.</p>