Phd Statistics/Maths Fall 2022- advice, profile evaluation, and suggestions

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
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kiramitsu
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat May 29, 2021 3:50 am

Phd Statistics/Maths Fall 2022- advice, profile evaluation, and suggestions

Post by kiramitsu » Tue Jun 01, 2021 6:30 am

Hi!!
Background

Applying for: Phd Math or Stats
From: India

Undergraduate: Top 2 for Pure Math
Major- Math Minor- theoretical Physics
Overall Grades- 9.5/10
Courses Taken- Analysis1,2,3 ; Algebra 1,2,3 ; Probability; Calculus; Complex Analysis; Differential Equations; Topology; Stochastic processes 1,2; Game theory; Optimisation; Probability and Statistics

Masters: Top 1 for statistics from India
Specialisation - Advanced Probability
Overall Grade- 82%
Courses taken- Regression; Probability; Linear Models and algebra, Statistical Inference, Analysis 1,2; Measure theoretic probability, optimisation, Multivariate analysis, Large sample methods

Courses I plan to take- Time series analysis, functional analysis, martingale theory, statistical computing, Large deviations theory, Brownian Motions and diffusions, Weak emperical processes

Projects - reading projects where I read two papers in mixing times and another one in fourier series

Research experience- None

Letters- Two good ones from very reputed professors and other one is decent

Planning to apply to: NC Chapel, USC, Ohio, Florida, Michigan state, U of Michigan, Washington, cornell statistics. NYU courant - math.

Questions I have:
1. I plan to apply for PhD in statistics that emphasise on Probability or has a probability group. Should I apply for Phd Math programs in universities where they have good probability group ? Does have a statistics masters instead of math put my application in a bad position?

2. Does a good score in Math subject gre add value to my application ?

3. I don’t have research experience, I might do a project next semester (during the application process), does this completely put in me disadvantage ?

Any school suggestions are welcome. Any general suggestions or advice is also welcome.

quanticbolt
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:48 am

Re: Phd Statistics/Maths Fall 2022- advice, profile evaluation, and suggestions

Post by quanticbolt » Thu Jun 03, 2021 12:46 am

A good mGRE score will almost certainly not hurt your chances (especially since you come from a stats background).

That said, your coursework looks fine if you want to go ahead and apply to math programs instead of stats programs. You'll likely be more or less prepared for a math degree based on your course repertoire. I think since you have a stats degree though, that you should emphasize your strong math background in your SOP. Don't list courses of course -- they can look at your transcript for that -- but try to talk about how you are (and have) prepared to address potential deficits in your mathematical background.

As you mentioned, a particular weak point of your application is your lack of research experience especially since you are a Master's student. In some subfields of math, it is not uncommon to not have much in the way of research until you've started a PhD, but stats is not one of those unfortunately. Can you think of any course-related projects you may have independently worked on going outside the scope of the syllabus (i.e. the implementation of some algorithm of some particular statistical method)? Do you have a Git?

I think it would be beneficial if you could cut back a bit on the coursework and try focus on some research projects, if possible. It's around this time that you are expected to start tackling some problems by yourself without needing to take courses for it. Of course, as someone who also loves to take courses and learn as many new things as possible, I understand that it's not so easy to do this.

Anyway, good luck on your applications. Even without any research experience, it is, in my opinion, a decently strong application. I'm not really sure about the particular programs and schools you've identified. Hopefully, someone else can chime in on that.

kiramitsu
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat May 29, 2021 3:50 am

Re: Phd Statistics/Maths Fall 2022- advice, profile evaluation, and suggestions

Post by kiramitsu » Fri Jun 04, 2021 4:57 am

quanticbolt wrote:
Thu Jun 03, 2021 12:46 am
A good mGRE score will almost certainly not hurt your chances (especially since you come from a stats background).

That said, your coursework looks fine if you want to go ahead and apply to math programs instead of stats programs. You'll likely be more or less prepared for a math degree based on your course repertoire. I think since you have a stats degree though, that you should emphasize your strong math background in your SOP. Don't list courses of course -- they can look at your transcript for that -- but try to talk about how you are (and have) prepared to address potential deficits in your mathematical background.

As you mentioned, a particular weak point of your application is your lack of research experience especially since you are a Master's student. In some subfields of math, it is not uncommon to not have much in the way of research until you've started a PhD, but stats is not one of those unfortunately. Can you think of any course-related projects you may have independently worked on going outside the scope of the syllabus (i.e. the implementation of some algorithm of some particular statistical method)? Do you have a Git?

I think it would be beneficial if you could cut back a bit on the coursework and try focus on some research projects, if possible. It's around this time that you are expected to start tackling some problems by yourself without needing to take courses for it. Of course, as someone who also loves to take courses and learn as many new things as possible, I understand that it's not so easy to do this.

Anyway, good luck on your applications. Even without any research experience, it is, in my opinion, a decently strong application. I'm not really sure about the particular programs and schools you've identified. Hopefully, someone else can chime in on that.
Thanks for the reply. I have done a project as a part of my regression course. Due to covid and the teaching being online, professors in my universities are not very enthusiastic to give projects to students. Since I went to a university different from my undergraduate university and the lack of communication is probably the reason for this.There's also no summer break or semester breaks. Anyways I plan to do a research project instead of a course next semester. Is there anyway I can write about my lack of research experience in my SOP ? (not what I have written above but something that doesn't sound bad).

quanticbolt
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:48 am

Re: Phd Statistics/Maths Fall 2022- advice, profile evaluation, and suggestions

Post by quanticbolt » Tue Jun 08, 2021 5:56 pm

Just talk about what you have done.

Do: Try to emphasize the project you hope to work on in the upcoming term and the preparation you have done for that. Talk about your research goals for PhD.

Don't point to your lack of experience or make excuses. Admissions committees understand that not all students have equal opportunities to participate in research for a myriad of reasons. In general, they don't need to hear you explain why as much as they want to hear that you have a plan going forward.



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