Worried About my Score

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
GWLeibniz
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Aug 19, 2017 5:10 pm

Worried About my Score

Postby GWLeibniz » Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:33 am

I took the math GRE over the weekend. I did every official practice test published by ETS, worked through the Princeton Review, through two tests by a fellow named Gilad Pagi, and worked through most of Agrawal's GRE prep book, and I still didn't feel prepared once I had a look over the actual test. Besides, I am just so slow when it comes to calculations. I honestly have no idea how I did; I had to guess on quite a few of them. I am pretty worried about getting into a graduate school. I have a excellent undergraduate GPA, a paper published in the professional level mathematical journal Operators and Matrices (and I am working on another, which I will definitely mention in my application), and can get good letters of recommendation, but I am very anxious over this GRE. I am not really aiming for the top programs anyway. Do I have any chance?

I am find it so exasperating that graduate schools are more concerned about prospective students being able to do inane Calculus problems within 3 minutes rather than knowing, e.g., a few things about completely positive maps, von Neumann Algebras, etc. If I do a MS in pure math first and then apply to a PhD program, do I have to provide GRE scores even if I have an MS? If this is possible, maybe I'll go for an MS first, since most MS programs don't require the GRE, and I shouldn't have any trouble getting into an MS program.

w4rm4ch1n3
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Sep 05, 2017 10:57 am

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby w4rm4ch1n3 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:36 am

I feel the same way. I have no clue how I did. And I also guessed on many

SMJKRT115
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2017 9:34 am

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby SMJKRT115 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:42 am

So you found the computational problems considerably more involved than in the practice material?

GWLeibniz
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Aug 19, 2017 5:10 pm

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby GWLeibniz » Mon Sep 18, 2017 12:54 pm

Hmm...It's hard to say. The test is somewhat of a blur now, and having done all practice tests haphazardly, they have become blurred too. There was a definite integral on it, and it wasn't one of those for which you could just differentiate the options and easily get the answer; there was a some identities involved and a lot of unfolding. So I suppose it was somewhat computational heavy--at least I felt it was.

Junaid456
Posts: 55
Joined: Thu Mar 23, 2017 7:55 pm

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby Junaid456 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 1:13 pm

GWLeibniz wrote:Hmm...It's hard to say. The test is somewhat of a blur now, and having done all practice tests haphazardly, they have become blurred too. There was a definite integral on it, and it wasn't one of those for which you could just differentiate the options and easily get the answer; there was a some identities involved and a lot of unfolding. So I suppose it was somewhat computational heavy--at least I felt it was.


Would you, however, say that the material you mentioned above is mostly standard material found in most calculus/pre-calculus textbooks, in the sense that one could have potentially prepared for those problems. I'm asking this because there are very few test prep resources, and I feel as if something is going to pop up on the next exam that I may totally missed in the preceding months.

It'd be great if you could respond to be via inbox as well. Thanks.

ConcernedSenior18
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 13, 2017 12:30 am

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby ConcernedSenior18 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:16 pm

I also share your concern over scores - I suppose we will have to wait and see how it went. However, a few things that may ease your mind:

1) They do not expect you to have taken every possible undergraduate course, and thus do not expect you to be able to answer every question. This will be reflected when they scale the scores.

2) For most graduate programs, a score around 700 will be sufficient to not weaken your application, so it is not as if you need to be top 20% in order to get into graduate programs.

3) Look for a couple of programs that you feel are good fits but do not require subject test scores and be sure to apply to at least two of those. It gives you options where you do not have to send those scores that inaccurately reflect your mathematical abilities.

As much as it may feel impossible now, you can get into a graduate program with low MGRE scores. Also talk to your professors and get their advice - talking with mind was extremely helpful.

MathCat
Posts: 153
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2014 12:17 am

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby MathCat » Wed Sep 20, 2017 3:39 am

GWLeibniz wrote:I am find it so exasperating that graduate schools are more concerned about prospective students being able to do inane Calculus problems within 3 minutes rather than knowing, e.g., a few things about completely positive maps, von Neumann Algebras, etc. If I do a MS in pure math first and then apply to a PhD program, do I have to provide GRE scores even if I have an MS? If this is possible, maybe I'll go for an MS first, since most MS programs don't require the GRE, and I shouldn't have any trouble getting into an MS program.


Most programs aren't. Many simply view the GRE as a cut off: a very low score is a big red flag, but once it's above a certain point, it hardly matters what your score is. What that cut off is will depend on the program - places like Berkeley and Stanford want at least 800, I know that Cornell wants at least 700... but there's many schools where they don't even care if you write the exam. Basically, I think you should apply to programs based on your other strengths and research interests aligning well - if your score ends up being alarmingly low (e.g. far below 50%), then it could be an issue. But if you don't get in anywhere, you can retake it and score better and try applying again. I say this because if a school requires an mGRE score, they will still require it even if you have an MS.

Forums like this mislead people into thinking the mGRE is way more important than it is at most places.

I suggest looking at past years admissions posts - there are many people with pretty low mGRE scores that still got admitted to several programs.

yasyas
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2016 1:34 pm

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby yasyas » Wed Sep 27, 2017 1:59 pm

Hello everyone
I am a graduate student and am planning to take the Gre math subject test. I hear that this exam gets harder and harder.Is it good IMO books for studying?
I am looking for suitable materials to study and would be very grateful for any websites, books, or resources you can suggest. Thank you for your time and assistance in this matter.

GWLeibniz
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Aug 19, 2017 5:10 pm

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby GWLeibniz » Fri Oct 13, 2017 7:53 am

Okay...Here are my scores (I just got them this morning):

GRE Revised General Test:
Q: 155 (59 percentile)
V: 155 (69 percentile)
W: 3 (18 percentile)
GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 640 (46 percentile)

As I said, I am positively dreadful at performing inane calculations and doing calculus problems (mostly because I am not terribly interested in doing them). I must say, however, that I am rather perplexed at my analytical writing score. I am really showing my true color here, but what does the percentile indicate? From my meager understanding, it indicates the percentage of people who got a score lower than yours. Is that right?

Without revealing too much information to be identifiable, do I have a shot at getting into a school that ranks 52 according to usnews? This is my top choice. I realize that is a high ranking, but this school has someone who is one of the best in their field doing incredibly original work. Will my undergrad GPA, letters of recommendation, and published paper outweigh these GRE scores?

lambert
Posts: 15
Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2017 7:41 am

Re: Worried About my Score

Postby lambert » Fri Oct 13, 2017 1:05 pm

I don't want to criticize you but maybe it would work out better for you if you switched from "not terribly interested to do inane calculations" to "interested in getting a better score"? I don't think anyone actually likes having to sit through these exams but at the very least they're indicative of your skill to do rudimentary (and relatively simple) college math and show some kind of understanding of the undergrad curriculum.

I would think the Q 155 score is more concerning since the general GRE math test is very simple (most apps I've seen here have nearly perfect scores there, and it's not just those aiming for top 10-20 schools). It means you're about average in math when it comes to the entire graduate applicant pool (not just those wanting to do math).

If the rest of your application is really good you may be able to outweigh the scores, but even for top 50 your scores might raise a red flag.

That being said there's still time to improve. If you're signed up for the October subject test, it's probably better to study this couple of weeks and practice those calculations to get a better score. For the general test, you can practically take it any week up until the application deadline so you could try it again sometime in November for example.




Return to “Mathematics GRE Forum: The GRE Subject Test in Mathematics”



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot] and 7 guests