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how important is LoR?

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how important is LoR?  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jul 2018, 17:18
I'm internatinal student and majored in Econ.
I have BA and MA degree in ECON but decided that i would apply to finance phd. (I majored Macroeconomics at graduate.)
However, most professors I know are econ professors so i think my LoR is not that strong.
I wonder how important LoR is and how much it affects on decision.

My profile: 3.8/4.5(UG), 3.9/4.5(Graduate)- when i rescaled my gpa to 4.0system, I got 3.7/4.0(UG), 3.8/4.0(Graduate). I calculated A,A+->4.0, A--> 3.6666 B+->3.3333 this way but not sure.
gre(v155, q170), a few math courses(analysis, linear algebra, calculus, diff.equation etc.), my thesis was about exchange rate.
Can I apply to finance phd?
I'm considering CMU, UMD, U of Minnesota, U of Michigan, OSU, MSU, TAMU, UNC-chaplehill etc.
Please give me some advice and your thoughts.
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Re: how important is LoR?  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jul 2018, 10:31
phdapplicant wrote:
I'm internatinal student and majored in Econ.
I have BA and MA degree in ECON but decided that i would apply to finance phd. (I majored Macroeconomics at graduate.)
However, most professors I know are econ professors so i think my LoR is not that strong.
I wonder how important LoR is and how much it affects on decision.

My profile: 3.8/4.5(UG), 3.9/4.5(Graduate)- when i rescaled my gpa to 4.0system, I got 3.7/4.0(UG), 3.8/4.0(Graduate). I calculated A,A+->4.0, A--> 3.6666 B+->3.3333 this way but not sure.
gre(v155, q170), a few math courses(analysis, linear algebra, calculus, diff.equation etc.), my thesis was about exchange rate.
Can I apply to finance phd?
I'm considering CMU, UMD, U of Minnesota, U of Michigan, OSU, MSU, TAMU, UNC-chaplehill etc.
Please give me some advice and your thoughts.




Hello phdapplicant


Where are you from ?

What is the name of your undergraduate institution ?

Ok, shift from Macroeconomics to Microeconomics, which Finance is.

Fine.


Of course, you know Econ professors, those are the one who taught you.

That doesn't matter at all, it perfectly fine.

LOR's are somewhat important and they somewhat affect the decision.

Of course admission officers would not tell you that.

No big deal about LOR's.


Here is the news for you, you are going to write them for your professors, they are just going to take a look on them, maybe correct somethings, like few words or not.

Sure it would be better if they accept to write it, but don't expect that, they are going to delegate that on you or just use some existing template, that they always use.

You profile is fine, your GPA also, you GRE quant score is great, that will get you in, since they want to see exactly that, your verbal is fine especially since you are international non-native speaker.

Your math courses will make all the difference along with GRE quant, i dont know if you aware of that when you took them, but they want exactly that background and prerequisites.

Thesis is fine, it can be applied to Finance.


Bottom line, of course you can apply to Finance PhD.

It is easier to get in Economics, a lot easier, but you should follow your passion and pursue Finance.

You are strong and competitive candidate for Finance.

Being international student is going to be a plus, you are going to bring cultural diversity, they love that.


I can provide you with GRE average scores for all universities on the list, but there is no need to since you have what they desire the most perfect quant score, verbal doesn't matter that much after you surpassed certain level, which you did, meaning between your 155 and let say somebody's 160 on verbal there is not much difference for them, they will judge/decide on overall profile who is better/more suitable for them.

Instead of that I am going to rank those universities on your list, based on how it is easy/hard to get in, how competitive they are:


Carnegie Mellon University Tepper PhD in Financial Economics

Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan

UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School



Robert H. Smith School of Business University of Maryland, College Park

University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management

Fisher College of Business Ohio State University


Mays Business School - Texas A&M University

Eli Broad College of Business Michigan State University


The way I structured them for you means, that first three are in "dream " category (not literally), being best ranked and most hard to get in but possible for you, next three are in your reach or fit category where you will be most probably admitted and last category of two is so called "safety" where you will be admitted most certainly, where is the easiest to get in based on your list provided, but you should go to better ranked school if you can.

Of course you may have different preferences, based on geographic, friends/family ties, research or whatever reasons, this is just structured on probability of admission for you.

What is the research area/topic you are interested in Finance ?


I am sure this helps :cool:
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Your kudos are much appreciated

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Re: how important is LoR? &nbs [#permalink] 13 Jul 2018, 10:31
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