2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Feb 29, 2020 1:40 am

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by Schauder » Sun Mar 29, 2020 7:39 pm

Undergrad Institution: Top 10 Math
Major(s): Math
GPA: 3.8 (3.97 in graduate math courses)
Type of Student: Domestic Asian Male

GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 700 (60%)

TOEFL Score: N/A

Program Applying: Applied and Pure Math PhD (Applied & Pure PDEs/Analysis)

Research Experience:
-2 Applied REUs in Applied PDEs and Applied PDEs + Data Science
-1 Pure REU in Harmonic Analysis
-2 Years of Applied PDEs Research
-1 Semester of Pure PDEs Research
- Some presentations and talks at conferences. Some papers in preparation.

-Scholarships for Research In Math
-Dean's List

Pertinent Activities or Jobs:

Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help:
- 9 graduate courses when I submitted my app. Will graduate with 11.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
- Well known letter writers. My letter writers specialized in the fields I applied for. At least 2 of them had very high opinions of me.
- Some reading courses on topics in analysis.

Applying to Where: (Applied and Pure Math PhDs)

Princeton - (Applied Math) Rejected [Did not submit mGRE]
Brown - (Applied Math) Rejected [Did not submit mGRE]
MIT - (Math) Rejected
Berkeley - (Math) Rejected
Columbia - (Applied Math) Accepted
UCLA - (Math) Accepted Attending! 8)
UCSD - (Math) Rejected
UCI - (Math) Accepted
North Western - (Applied Math) Rejected [Did not submit mGRE]
Caltech - (Applied Math) Rejected [Did not submit mGRE]
UWashington - (Applied Math) Accepted for unfunded masters [Did not submit mGRE]
NYU - (Math) Accepted for unfunded masters
UNC Chapel Hill - (Math) Accepted [Did not submit mGRE]

CMU - (Math) Withdrew [Did not submit mGRE]
USC - (Math) Withdrew

My two cents are that my mGRE is subpar for the places I applied to and got in to. However, I was lucky enough to get four good offers because I had strong letters and my letter writers have close connections with the places I got admitted to. My advice for future applicants is to make sure to do well on the mGRE since it is a lot more important than I thought it was.
Last edited by Schauder on Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:28 pm, edited 20 times in total.

Posts: 1
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Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by trac20 » Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:42 pm

Undergrad Institution: University of Wisconsin, not Madison
Major(s): Mathematics, Geology
Minor(s): Women's Studies, Computer Science
GPA: 3.69
Type of Student: Domestic, Female, Not Minority

GRE Revised General Test:
First Try
Q: 149 (35%)
V: 160 (85%)
W: 4.0 (57%)
Second Try
Q: 162 (78%)
V: 159 (82%)
W: 4.0 (57%)
Some schools that I applied to have both of my scores, the 4 free scores are too tempting.

GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 540 (24%)
Only submitted to schools that strongly recommended or requires it.

TOEFL Score: N/A

Program Applying: Pure Math Ph.D.

Research Experience: One summer research at my school, we originally planned to write an article but did not end up with one, though I was able to get a poster done and presented at my schools symposium. I got a scholarship from the poster presentation.
Awards/Honors/Recognitions: 4 years of university/department scholarship, no tuition paid. Some other scholarships within my university.
Pertinent Activities or Jobs: I tutor math in my department, and I am the president of our math club. :D
Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help: Nothing really.
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: None unfortunately.
I did not get to know any of my professors, they all seemed busy and unapproachable. My summer research supervisor is pretty dismissive and I definitely didn't impress him.

Applying to Where: (Color use here is welcome) School listed in alphabetical order
Indiana University - Rejected
Iowa State University - Accepted
Kansas State University - Accepted
Michigan State University - Rejected
University of Illinois at Chicago - Accepted
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Rejected
University of Iowa - Waitlisted
University of Kansas - Accepted
University of Kentucky - Accepted
University of Michigan - Rejected
University of Minnesota at Twin City - Rejected
University of Missouri - Accepted
University of Nebraska at Lincoln - Accepted
University of Wisconsin at Madison - Accepted

Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2020 10:56 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by Commutative_Commute » Thu Apr 02, 2020 11:20 pm


Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2020 2:17 am

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by jkmoola » Sat Apr 04, 2020 2:23 am


Posts: 20
Joined: Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:52 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by hesdee » Mon Apr 06, 2020 3:00 pm

Last edited by hesdee on Fri Apr 24, 2020 9:17 pm, edited 13 times in total.

Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2020 10:39 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by snailmom » Fri Apr 10, 2020 11:14 pm

Undergrad Institution: Sexy State R1
Major(s): Honors Math
Minor(s): CS
GPA: ~3.7
Type of Student: DWF

GRE Revised General Test:
Q: 161
V: 169
W: 4.5

GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: <<50%, only submitted where absolutely required

Program Applying: Applied Math PhD

Research Experience: 3.5 years, including a summer, at home school - Honors thesis and publication in progress. Research-based study abroad. REU at top school in the field, resulting in a talk at JMM and a writeup on the program's website.
Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Graded for upper level math courses for three semesters, proctored exams. Volunteered at events to teach children math.
Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help: Took and did well in several math grad classes, have four strong letters, applied for GRFP.

Applying to Where: (Color use here is welcome)
NYU Courant - rejected
Columbia APAM - accepted! attending!:)
Brown - rejected
University of Washington - unfunded master's, declined
Maryland AMSC - accepted! declined
Colorado Boulder - rejected IQ Biology accepted Applied Math, declined
UC Davis - pending, assuming rejection
UC Irvine MCSB - invited for interview, didn't hear back, assuming rejection
University of Arizona - accepted! declined
University of Utah - accepted! declined:(
UCLA Atmospheric and Ocean Sciences - rejected
Last edited by snailmom on Sat Apr 18, 2020 5:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Posts: 12
Joined: Mon Feb 10, 2020 7:22 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by kansas_math » Sun Apr 12, 2020 5:08 pm


Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2020 9:23 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by Iris » Sun Apr 12, 2020 10:02 pm

Undergrad Institution: University of Essex
Major(s): BSc in Mathematics and Economics
GPA: 75/89
Converted GPA: 3.55/4.00
Type of Student: International Caucasian Female

GRE Revised General Test:
Q: 166 (87%)
V: 156 (75%)
W: 4.0 (57%)
GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 620 (42%)

TOEFL Score: Waived

Program Applying: Pure Mathematics Ph.D, MSc

Research Experience: None.
Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Scholar in the faculty of mathematics.
Pertinent Activities or Jobs: I helped out quite frequently in the faculty, and I am the designated tutor for trigonometry and calculus. I worked at Barclay's for one summer as an analyst intern.
Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help: Female.
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: One of my letter writers knows me well since I was in secondary school.

Applying to Where: Pure Mathematics MSc/PhD

Cambridge MSc Admitted 3/2
Florida PhD Admitted 21/2
Michigan State PhD Admitted 17/3
Minnesota PhD Admitted 24/2
Oregon PhD Admitted 10/2
Toronto PhD Admitted 28/2
Washington at Seattle PhD Admitted 3/3

McGill MSc Pending? Waitlisted?
Michigan PhD ?
Notre Dame PhD ?
Oxford MSc ?

Brown PhD Rejected 11/2
California at Berkeley PhD Rejected 7/2
Chicago PhD Rejected 31/1
MIT PhD Rejected 6/2
New York PhD Admitted 22/2
Princeton PhD Rejected 31/1
Yale PhD Rejected 12/2

Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2020 7:05 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by noodlenoob » Tue Apr 14, 2020 7:47 pm

Undergrad Institution: Highly Ranked Public University
Major(s): Math/CS
GPA: >3.8
Type of Student: Domestic Asian Male

GRE Revised General Test:
Q: 170 (96%)
V: 163 (93%)
W: 4.5 (81%)
GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 970 (99%)

TOEFL Score: N/A

Program Applying: Pure Math PhD (Number Theory/Arithmetic Geometry)

Research Experience:
-Applied Math REU at home institution
-Applied Math lab (same as REU)
-Top scholarship from home institution
-Putnam top 500 many times
Pertinent Activities or Jobs:
-Helped with local math circle
Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help:
-12 grad courses on application
-A couple of reading courses (number theory stuff) with a well-known and very supportive professor
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:
-Kinda mediocre junior year from splitting time with applied math & CS stuff. At least now I know what I really like lmao
-Definitely one good letter, but my other two letters are from the applied math REU and a junior faculty, which probably hold less weight in pure math PhD applications
-Jointly receiving MA degree in Math upon graduation

Applying to Where: (Color use here is welcome)
Princeton - Rejected
Harvard - Rejected
Chicago - Rejected
MIT - Rejected
Stanford - Rejected
Berkeley - Rejected
Michigan - Rejected
Columbia - Rejected

Wisconsin-Madison - Waitlisted -> Rejected
Duke - Waitlisted -> Rejected
UPenn - Ghosted :roll:
UCSD - Accepted and ATTENDING 8)
Maryland - Accepted
OSU - Accepted
UWashington - Accepted
Stony Brook -Unfunded Masters :oops:

Utah - Waitlisted -> Rejected

I would like to offer my two cents to future applicants who come across this post: getting into a math PhD program is hard! At least for me, I realized much too late that diverting too much time into "backup plans" and trying to stay "employable" would only hurt my application. If you are an average student (as I consider myself) who wants to get into an elite program, I would say go for it! But go for it all the way, because it is very competitive...

Also, find some faculty who have your back. It is because of my mentor's support that I still believe pursuing math is a good idea for myself. Without them I would be super screwed.

Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2020 8:54 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by Branndonm1 » Sat Apr 18, 2020 1:32 am

Undergrad Institution: Community college for 2 years, state school for 2 years (California)
Major(s): Math
Minor(s): N/A
GPA: Overcall 3.7, Major 4.0
Type of Student: Domestic hispanic male

GRE Revised General Test:
Q: 156 (60%)
V: 153 (60%)
W: 3.0 (15%)
GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 520 (18%)

TOEFL Score: N/A

Program Applying: Pure math (geometric PDE and math physics)

Research Experience: machine learning REU, graph theory REU, PDE (fluids) REU, mathematical finance REU -- all at other schools over the summer. Senior thesis at home school on graduate-level material in math physics. 1 engineering internship over winter break. Gave 3 research talks at smaller conferences, one poster presentation at JMM.
Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Handful of scholarships for minorities and for my research, deans list, McNair scholar.
Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Private tutor, college tutor, grader, and assistant in high school math courses.
Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help: Minority and had to overcome many hardships. I have connected strongly with other professors who have the same background as me and will write strong letters.
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: I have a family. I am an older applicant. I started my college career at a community college. I then took years off before continuing my BA in math. I also started off as a physics major so when I switched to math I had to pack in all my upper-division major courses in my senior year. Also, no grad courses since my school doesn't offer any.

Applying to Where:

UC Davis
UC Irvine
UC Berkeley
UC Santa Barbara
UC San Diego
University of Oregon
University of Washington
Stony Brook
John Hopkins
University of Southern California

UC Santa Cruz w/ TAship
University of Utah w/ TAship and Scholarship
Oregon State w/ TAship and fellowship
UNLV w/ TAship
UC Riverside - w/ TAship and fellowship Attending! :D

Reflection: I feel like I did not make good connections at the REUs I attended so I did not feel comfortable asking my advisors for letters. I felt that my professors and my senior thesis advisor would write better letters. I think that sent a red flag to the committee. I also think that I should have put more emphasis on the GRE. I did not study for the GRE at all and think I could've landed a spot at more prestigious schools if I could've at least pulled average scores. I think the fact that I took most of my core math upper divs in my senior year also might have impacted my application. Looking back I should have transferred to a school that offered grad courses in math so that I could have maybe stayed an extra year and pad my application with the graduate work too. I hope these stats help students in the future, I know they helped me a ton. Best of luck!

Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Oct 03, 2019 2:16 am

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by oldtableaux » Wed Apr 22, 2020 4:24 am

Undergrad + Grad Institution: Foreign / Indian / Not well known
Major: Mathematics (5 years BS+MS Integrated degree)
GPA: 8.07/10.00 (varies between 3.5 to 3.7+ on the 4.00-scale; there’s no clear conversion method)
Type of Student: International (Indian), Male

GRE Revised General Test:
Q: 169 (95%)
V: 157 (76%)
W: 4.0 (57%)
GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
Oct 2019 - 810 (79%)

TOEFL Score: 104

Program Applying: Pure Math PhD. Interested in Algebra and Combinatorics.

Research Experience: 4 summer projects (REU equivalent) at very well known schools in India. Two semester-projects and a Master's thesis project at home institution. In one of the summer projects, working on algebraic combinatorics, I got some small original results, but did not publish anything.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Nothing great.

Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help: Primarily interested in representation theory and algebraic combinatorics. Two of my recommenders are well-known, young and active researchers in their fields. I did original research with one of them and I expect a good (perhaps not very strong) letter from him and the other told me to expect a good, but not strong, letter. Another strong letter from a professor at home institution who knows me well.

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: Graduate level coursework - Commutative Algebra, Rep. Theory of Finite Groups, Differential Geometry, Lie Groups and Lie Algebras, Functional Analysis, Harmonic Analysis, Algebraic Topology, Stochastic Processes and Algebraic Graph Theory. Many more courses which are typically offered at undergraduate level in India such as Complex Analysis, Differential Equations, Probability and Rings and Fields. Many schools that I applied to such as UGA, LSU, Utah and UMass allow you to upload details of your mathematics coursework with your application. I believe this is a plus point for international students particularly as this helps the committee properly gauge your background in mathematics, look at your grades in perspective and compare it with their own schools' standards.

Applying to Where:

Univ of Georgia (UGA), Athens - Admitted (02/11), Accepted.

UC Davis - Waitlisted after email inquiry (03/11) -> Rejected (04/13)
U Utah - Waitlisted (02/10) -> Rejected (04/13)
Univ of Southern California (USC) - Waitlisted (03/26) -> Rejected (04/14)
U Mass, Amherst - Waitlisted after email inquiry (03/10) -> Rejected (04/21)
Louisiana State Univ (LSU) - Offered admission, but waitlisted for funding (03/11) -> Denied funding (04/14)

U Michigan, Ann Arbor - Rejected (02/12)
UIUC - Rejected (01/10)
U Washington, Seattle - Rejected (03/02)
U Oregon - Rejected (02/10)

U Vienna - Rejected (04/21)
IST Austria - Rejected (02/11)
Berlin Mathematical School (BMS), Phase I - Rejected (01/22)

Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2020 9:36 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by nasheed » Sat Apr 25, 2020 7:18 pm

Undergrad Institution: International (India), Hindu College-University of Delhi
Major(s): Mathematics
Percentage: 89%
Type of Student: International (Indian) Female

Grad Institution: International (India), IIT Delhi
Major(s): Mathematics
GPA: 8.11/10

GRE General Test:
Q: 168 (93%)
V: 151 (51%)
W: 4.0 (57%)
GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 730 (65%)

TOEFL Score: 104/120 (R: 27, L: 24, S: 24, W: 29)

Program Applying: Pure Math Ph.D (Functional Analysis/Operator Theory/ Topology-Geometry)

Research Experience: 1 year Master Thesis on Geometric Topology (no paper published), 1 Summer Project on Piecewise Linear Topology, gave various talks (nothing huge).

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Awarded INSPIRE Scholarship.

Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help: 14 Math grad classes by time of applying (Analysis, Topology, Differential Equations), 18 by graduation. Good SOP. Recommendation from project supervisor (he mentioned link of my project report in his recommendation). Most importantly, I kept in touch with professors and graduate coordinators throughout.

I never cared about GRE scores, they are just a filtering criteria.

Applied to:

Donating 💰:
NYU- Offered unfunded MS, 4/4/20 (declined 4/21/20)
Chicago- Rejected, 3/10/20
Northwestern- Rejected, 3/28/20
UC San Diego- Rejected, 3/19/20
Boston- Accepted :shock: , 4/15/20 (declined 4/15/20 as I wanted to go for Functional Analysis and they don’t have a research group in that)

Reach (Practically):
North Carolina Chapel Hill- Rejected, 2/11/20 (found out later that they have 81% in state student rule)
Purdue- Rejected, 2/10/20
Washington- Rejected :( , 3/3/20 (was expecting to get in)
UC Davis- Waitlisted, 4/13/20 (never heard back)
Indiana University Bloomington- Accepted with TAship $18k, 4/14/20 (accepted offer 4/14/20 :D) ATTENDING!

Oregon- Waitlisted, 2/25/20, Accepted, 4/15/20 (declined offer 4/15/20)

I’m very happy with Indiana. I couldn’t believe all day. I want to do research in Functional Analysis and Operator Theory and IU has Hari Bercovici who has written last chapter of Conway. IU is home to Max Zorn (from Zorn’s Lemma), Halmos and Conway. In my field, I couldn’t have asked for a better university. One thing that helped me the most was to assure the graduate coordinator that it is my top choice and I will accept it as soon as I get the letter.

Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:38 pm

Re: 2020 Applicant Profiles and Admissions Results

Post by asdfghjkl; » Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:42 pm

Undergrad Institution: Top 50-75, but I am a transfer student
GPA: 3.36 (in the last two years)
GPA: 2.98 (transfer GPA in community college)
Type of Student: International

GRE Revised General Test:
Q: 168
V: 142
W: 3.0
GRE Subject Test in Mathematics:
M: 590

Program Applying: Pure Math Ph.D (Algebra)

Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help:
I talked about casual proof of Prime Number Theorem in Research Symposium in my community college. My senior thesis is around algebraic topology or Grothendieck Duality Theorem, but this is not a research quality. Also, I took some grad classes in algebra and topology.

Fall 2020
University of Washington: rejected (Mar 4)
UI Urbana Champaign: rejected (Jan 10)
Wisconsin Madison: rejected (Feb 3)
University of Utah: rejected (Mar 3)

Moderately Competitive:
UC Santa Cruz: never heard back, unfunded master (May 5)
Newyork State Buffalo: rejected (Apr 7)
U Massachussets Amherst: waitlisted (Apr 10), then rejected (Apr 21)
Kansas State: waitlisted(Apr 15), accepted (Jul 28) but I couldn't be in the U.S. by fall 2020.

Spring 2021
Kansas State:accepted (Sep 9) with GTA stipend

I need to mention that I had some negotiations with Kansas State, and how I got an exceptional treatment. I have message on Apr 15 that says I am on the waitlist but it was very positive message. So, I believed that I still have chance of acceptance to Kansas State, so from April to July, I continued communication to make sure our progress, and finally I have unofficial acceptance on Jul 28. However, Jul 28 is too late to move into the U.S. They said I could join in the spring 2021, but I still took almost the equal treatment with the officially accepted student, and I took Qualification Exam I remotely before I got an official acceptance. Very Kind and Flexible!

I chose the schools I apply based on the admission competitiveness. I applied to Amherst because it takes the recommendation letters seriously, and I have a strong connection to a professor who allegedly told me to write a positive letter. Also, Kansas is the only school that I didn't send my GRE score, and I thoght I need Kansas State for the backup plan if the other schools wouldn't take me ( I just want to care diversity of the applications. To be honest, I am quite satisfied with Kansas State). Also, I was absolutely a stranger by the time of admission, because I didn't physically participated to any schools except Santa Cruz or sending any emails, but in fact, we are often asked if we know any of faculty members of the schools we apply by the time of admission (and Santa Cruz rejected me because Santa Cruz put weight on GRE subject score??). Also, the four competitive schools (Washington, UIUC, Wisconsin, Utah) have an earlier deadline of application, and I didn't have enough preparation for the statement of purpose. Otherwise, I chose schools by how many of algebra professors exist in each faculty, and U.S. news ranking is one thing.

I need to explain my low GPA. In my last instituion, I took C in "Introduction to Proof" in the first quarter, and I also recklessly asked to take "Graduate Algebra I" in the first quarter, and I got C. Also, in "Introduction to Chaos", I overslept and I skipped the final exam, and I got C. I got B- in "Topology", since I was actually not interested in it that time. In community college, I took C in politics and English any many many.

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