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Has any of you ever used or are thinking of using services offered by admission consultants? Is there any benefit in purchasing a couple of hours? As you may be aware of, their service is really not that cheap (ranges around 200 - 250$ per hour).
I am the biggest procrastinator ever and am seriously considering an expert's help in putting my somewhat vague goals into *gasp!* R1 essay. Yeah, I am not even sure what avenue I should pursue due to my passions for a lot of things
What you want to get done from Admission consultants.
Reviewing your essays? I think this can be done by a good friend who has gone through all this before.
Never ever ask any consultant to write essays on your behalf. You are the best person to write about yourself. All in all i would say a big NO to admission/essay consultants.
This is a delicate matter. I can see the need to use an admissions consultant to break the writers block or to get some ideas, but instead of spending $XXX, why not simply read Paul Bodine or Montauk's books and look up some sample essays. I have done that a couple of times and it gives me an idea of how to start an essay. Ofcourse the end essay is miles away from anything that I started with but the sample essays give u a stimulant.
Or else use http://www.essayedge.com and look up some of their sample essays.
If all else fails shoot emails to gmat clubbers here to get some ideas.
But use the admission consultant idea for the last when you are not satisfied for your research.
Also you can ask some of your friends (who have got into the b-schhol )to share their application materials.
You can contact few current students of the school and request them to share their materials. Again this depends on your personal relationships, but still it gives you a better chance than going to consultants.
I agree with the previous poster that admission consultants should be your last option when everything else fails. Goodluck.
This is an issue that polarizes people to one of the two extremes. People either swear by admission consultants because they see great value or they swear at them because they are dissatisfied with the service they received. The truth, as with most situations in life, is in between.
A good consultant can definitely help you polish your application and can give you that extra push to succeed. But there are too many fly-by-night consultants who either have no clue about the process or have little time to pay you the level of attention you need.
My take:To start with, educate yourself thoroughly about the admissions process. Read this forum until you become sick, get the montauk book on admissions and paul's book on essay writing. Soak in all the information and master this whole application thing, atleast in theory. Then, play the field and talk to as many consultants as you can. You will be in a far better position to judge if he/she will be able to help you or not. Also, when you decide on a consultant, talk to the actual person who will be working with you and not with some marketing person.
I agree with ncprasad, people that use consultants and get admits swear by them. People that get dinged feel like they are scam artists.
Personally I couldn't justify spending thousands of dollars for their services since in my mind very few really provide anything spectacular. There is enough information available online, in books, and at events to get a great understanding of how to present your applications. You can find an essay editing service for far less money that will critique the writing but not content of your essays. You are much better off having friends or family do it. You can also make friends with other applicants and swap essays and help each other.
Research who you hire very carefully and really have an understanding of your chances before committing to applying to HBS or Stanford because they say you have a shot.
Thank you guys! I am seriously re-considering my options, although a lot of the inputs you provided have somehow deterred me from hiring one. Obviously any kind of advices provided by the consultant will have to be taken with a grain of salt. But then again, this kind of practice really defeats the purpose of contacting the admission consultants at the first place
In any case, thanks again for the input. The biriyani joke is funny as hell ... there is no way I can tell when ncprasad had his biriyani