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    Hi.

    I am studying at a near bottom ranked university this year. Would it be possible to do a masters at MIT or Standford if and when i graduate?

    I may be misled but I assumed that you must come from a top ranking university to do a masters degree in a university with worldwide status.
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    I'm not really sure for MIT but it's not necessarily for Stanford.

    Some friends I met at Stanford have undergrad degree from schools that I could no longer remember now. It's that dismal, so to speak.

    It's important to have a strong GPA and an excellent GRE score though.

    What are you going to major, btw?
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    if you get a first and nail your application, anything's possible. if you are truly passionate about and talented at your subject, that will no doubt come through. also make sure you're on good terms with a couple of professors. i'd give it a shot.
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    (Original post by cascadingstylez)
    Hi.

    I am studying at a near bottom ranked university this year. Would it be possible to do a masters at MIT or Standford if and when i graduate?

    I may be misled but I assumed that you must come from a top ranking university to do a masters degree in a university with worldwide status.
    It's not impossible, but it probably would be in your best interest to apply to a few lower ranked schools to avoid disappointment. By the way, you should keep in mind that a masters degree in the US will in all likelihood set you back about 50,000 pounds (including living expenses).
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    As someone said, you definitely need a first to stand out. Postgrad admission is arguably less competitive since less people apply, but MIT and Standard means a lot of cash and wits.
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    (Original post by Chriz)
    As someone said, you definitely need a first to stand out. Postgrad admission is arguably less competitive since less people apply, but MIT and Standard means a lot of cash and wits.
    That assumes that MIT and Stanford really know what a First from England is. As far as I know, they really don't. American universities tend to emphasize other factors anyway (as long as you got sufficient grades), such as GRE scores, recommendations, work experience, personal statement, etc.
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    (Original post by Bismarck)
    such as GRE scores, recommendations, work experience, personal statement, etc.
    exactly how much work experience on average would you say? and are they necessarily full time jobs? obviously they vary but generally speaking...

    or in other words, if you have relevant internships and/or proper summer jobs, would that suffice if you want to go straight from undergrad?
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    (Original post by drive like june)
    exactly how much work experience on average would you say? and are they necessarily full time jobs? obviously they vary but generally speaking...

    or in other words, if you have relevant internships and/or proper summer jobs, would that suffice if you want to go straight from undergrad?
    The disclaimer is that it varies case by case and even people with no work experience do occasionally get in and those with decades of experience don't get in. Now with that out of the way, it depends heavily on the subject. Anything related to business would expect you to have 3-5 years of full-time experience. Politics programs expect 1-3 years of full-time experience. Some colleges emphasize the full-time aspect more than others, so relevant intersnhips and summer jobs would help more in some than in others. Even then, it's very difficult to get into a good politics or economics program (assuming that's what you're asking) unless you've been out of school for at least a year or two. There's no harm in trying, but have realistic expectations.
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    stanford b-school encourages college seniors who want to apply to give it a shot
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    I may be misled but I assumed that you must come from a top ranking university to do a masters degree in a university with worldwide status.
    Not necessarily. People from high ranking universities tend to do well partially because they were selected for being that way. Is it any surprise Harvard grads do so well, considering how tough it is to get in? There is some difference in faculty quality/recognition, however. Graduate programs are more impressed by a strong letter of recommendation from a well-known professor than a similar letter from an unknown professor at a university they've never heard of.

    Carnegie Mellon has some very good advice for students considering graduate school in computer science, if that's your intended field.
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    (Original post by Bismarck)
    The disclaimer is that it varies case by case and even people with no work experience do occasionally get in and those with decades of experience don't get in. Now with that out of the way, it depends heavily on the subject. Anything related to business would expect you to have 3-5 years of full-time experience. Politics programs expect 1-3 years of full-time experience. Some colleges emphasize the full-time aspect more than others, so relevant intersnhips and summer jobs would help more in some than in others. Even then, it's very difficult to get into a good politics or economics program (assuming that's what you're asking) unless you've been out of school for at least a year or two. There's no harm in trying, but have realistic expectations.
    Bismarck, why are you killing all hope for that guy! Yes, it is possible but realistically not but you have no idea on the other things the guy has done. Since US admission is holistic, they might take into account his work experience or awards.
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    (Original post by Chriz)
    Bismarck, why are you killing all hope for that guy! Yes, it is possible but realistically not but you have no idea on the other things the guy has done. Since US admission is holistic, they might take into account his work experience or awards.
    I did say he should give it a shot. It's just that if someone has unrealistic expectations, they're not going to try very hard to get a job, which will hurt their chances of getting in the following year. I had schools explicitly tell me that they don't accept people without relevant work experience. No top notch school said that work experience is not necessary. Sure, it's possible to get in without work experience, but that would entail being super in every other criteria.
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    For MIT you really need to have distinguished yourself in your undergraduate career...
    How many papers have you published?
    How many patents to you hold?
    These are the types of questions that you'll get on paper and in your interview...
    The competition for both the institutions that you're thinking of is fierce!!
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    Well to be honest, you might have a better chance of winning the lottery so to say. You probably underestimate the competition at this level where 60%+ AAAa students get rejected. The 60% figure is rough but approximately the reject rate for high achieving SAT takers (meaning 2400 full marks) for Harvard. So you might be able to apply it to MIT since it might just as selective. Since you are doing IT, the chances are slim. Seriously, the people there know C++ and all that stuff ages ago and they all probably invented some robots of their own.

    You are always encouraged to apply since we (the people of TSR) know jack**** about you so we are always a bit biased towards these comments. Your only lost is the application fees.

    And don't forget, theres always a reason you don't see people on TSR with AAB, ABB trying to apply for an ivy league speaking confidently about admission, its not easy for anyone.
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    The truth is, slim chance. You need to be in the top of your class, get top notch GRE scores, get really good letter of recs, work experience/internship, interview, and have other extracurriculars.
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    it's definitely possible if you have a good GPA, GRE scores and letters of recommendation. MA programs are often cash cows for elite institutions. It would be more difficult if you were applying to a phd program because the university would most likely be investing a lot of time and money in you. Also I don't think US universities know all that much about British university rankings.
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    (Original post by Chriz)
    Well to be honest, you might have a better chance of winning the lottery so to say. You probably underestimate the competition at this level where 60%+ AAAa students get rejected. The 60% figure is rough but approximately the reject rate for high achieving SAT takers (meaning 2400 full marks) for Harvard. So you might be able to apply it to MIT since it might just as selective. Since you are doing IT, the chances are slim. Seriously, the people there know C++ and all that stuff ages ago and they all probably invented some robots of their own.

    You are always encouraged to apply since we (the people of TSR) know jack**** about you so we are always a bit biased towards these comments. Your only lost is the application fees.

    And don't forget, theres always a reason you don't see people on TSR with AAB, ABB trying to apply for an ivy league speaking confidently about admission, its not easy for anyone.
    Don't confuse Computer science with I.T.
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    If you are really dedicated to MIT or Stanford then I don't see why you can't go. It all depends on your dedication - meaning how much you are willing to sacrifice. To the point, you can first try get a master (possibly with distinction) in a top UK uni for computer science, participate in summer schools in top US uni and try to be a research assistant etc And most importantly get a near perfect (780-800) score for maths in GRE and a First Class (think this will be a must). Of course, all these stuff require a lot of resources and time but it will send a good signal to adcom in MIT or Stanford. No doubt, all these together will give you an edge over other applicants - even the applicants from top UK or US uni who has none of them.

    Btw, you don't need to come from an uni with overall worldwide status to go to top US uni but an uni that has certain place in academia for the particular subject. Which possibly explains why ppl, like whom Iligan had mentioned, are able to get to Stanford. And sometimes unis in UK, which sometimes in the top 10, in certain academia are ranked poorer than uni out of top 20 in UK for quite a few prestigious subjects (e.g Economics). I think you need to talk with your professors first and get an idea where your uni stands in your subject's academia instead of general rankings.
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    in my experience american academics are quite insular and don't know what's going on at gb institutions outside LSE/SOAS/Oxbridge for the social sciences and the equivalent for sciences and maths. they will not care about UK rankings. a lot of them prob don't know the difference between a 2:1 and a first. make sure you don't end up apologising for your university in your personal statement -- you should act as if it is an elite institution. also if your a level grades aren't good you probably don't need to put them down on your application form because grad schools don't care what you got in high school.

    the above comments notwithstanding an MA with distinction from an internationally recognised institution combined with an excellent GRE would look really help your chances but you MIGHT be able to get away with just a BA (2:1 or first) an excellent math GRE score and references. since they won't feel able to interpret the standard at your university they will prob go more by gre results and references. american references tend to be more overblown than GB ones and you would have to point that out to your referee. i dont think you need loads of research experience just for an MA.

    also you have to write a really articulate and professional sounding personal statement which states why your interests are an amazing fit for that of the dept.

    this is just my opinion based on my experience applying to phd programmes at top ranked schools in the social sciences. you should get as many different opinions as possible before planning your strategy. also you could write to the schools themselves asking them about the requirements for gb students and expected gre scores. you can also go to the fulbright institute in london -- i found the advisers there very helpful when i applied.

    as the poster above said, all this will require a lot of dedication and determination on your part.
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    (Original post by Bismarck)
    That assumes that MIT and Stanford really know what a First from England is.
    Of course they do. They are admissions professionals. They are well aware of how to rank degrees from virtually any country in the world.

    (Original post by Chriz)
    The 60% figure is rough but approximately the reject rate for high achieving SAT takers (meaning 2400 full marks) for Harvard.
    SAT scores have little relevance when applying for a graduate degree.
 
 
 
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