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Thread: long story involving the GRE and MS-Stat program

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    long story involving the GRE and MS-Stat program




    OK, here's my story, followed by my question. I am an assistant professor in a health-related discipline at a land-grant research university in the U.S. For a number of reasons, I've decided to apply as a part-time student to a Master of Statistics program at the institution where I work (yay for free tuition). I have always loved statistics, but felt limited by my mathematical abilities. I always thought I was "bad at math", but have recently come to believe this was a situation of my own creation. So, to remedy this, I have completely restarted my collegiate math curriculum in my spare time. So far, I have taken Calc I-II-II, linear algebra, and probability, with A's in all, except for a B in Calc III (got too busy at work). Starting this week, I will be taking (undergrad) courses in statistical inference and number theory. I have also just finished teaching an introductory-level statistics course to my own department's students, and I think I pulled it off rather well.

    So here's my problem... I decided to take the GRE (again, 10 years after I first took it) as a good-faith gesture to the Statistics department. I didn't want them to think I assumed I could just walk onto the program via my professional status as a faculty member. I didn't even need to take it again, according to the university's graduate school rules, since I already have a PhD. Unfortunately, I did assume I could just waltz into the GRE testing site and bang out a superlative score without any preparation: I got a 720 Verbal, but only 600 Quantitative. During the test, I only managed to get through 21 of the 30 Quant questions... I scored 660 Quantitative when I took it 10 years ago, and you'd think having a half-dozen math classes within this last year would've improved that! (Note that decade-old score was too old to be reported by ETS.) The statistics department's website (to which I'm applying to) mentions that competitive candidates have a 700+ Quantitative score.

    My question is: do I spend another $150 and retake the GRE with better preparation and hope for a higher quantitative score, or just stand on my other credentials and stop worrying about it? I do feel rather foolish to be in my position and yet still be worrying about admission into grad school, and you can be sure I'll not be a hard-ass when it comes to judging my own department's applicants!

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    Re: long story involving the GRE and MS-Stat program


    I've always believed that its easier getting in if you are already in the University than to apply from the outside. My advice is that you are fine and over-worrying yourself.

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