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 Post subject: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:41 pm 
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I took my GREs yesterday. During the writing portion, I lost patience with the stupid, overly-broad question. Halfway through my essay, I typed, "Oh my god. I cannot write another five-paragraph essay. Sorry, folks."

And then I clicked "submit." (It's computerized--you can't go back).

The worst part is that I don't regret it.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:43 pm 
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um'kay.


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:47 pm 
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I've taken the GRE before (and in the past, have done really well on the writing portion). But I'm really sick of being judged on writing that demonstrates no substance, and I'd rather be admitted/rejected to grad school on the basis of my recommendations, grades, statement of purpose, and critical writing. If the schools I'm applying to don't even bother to look at all my other credentials, then I don't really care to go there, anyhow.

Perhaps I just meant this as a reminder that grad school isn't a be-all, end-all.

P.S.: This can be a comfort to all of you who are applying to grad school. You're one ahead of me.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:54 pm 
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They will look at all your credentials and departments are counting the GRE less than they used to. Still, everything in your application counts. This will probably look like self-sabotage and they're going to wonder if you really want to be in grad school. Most selections committees are looking for people who do think grad school is the end-all, be-all.


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 5:58 pm 
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I am aware of that. They won't know what I wrote on my writing portion, though, and given my quantitative and verbal scores, it will look less like self-sabotage and more like the inability to test well.

I'm not encouraging anyone else to do this--it was just a really, really honest response. I didn't have it in my heart to write it. So, I didn't.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:02 pm 
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tinglepants! wrote:
I took my GREs yesterday. During the writing portion, I lost patience with the stupid, overly-broad question. Halfway through my essay, I typed, "Oh my god. I cannot write another five-paragraph essay. Sorry, folks."

And then I clicked "submit." (It's computerized--you can't go back).

The worst part is that I don't regret it.


I understand! I just finished grad school in august. It'll get worse before it gets better. Don't mean to discourage you, but just keeping it real.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:04 pm 
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One time, in my speech comm class, I was given an assignment to write a 3 - 5 page paper, and I wrote a 2 and three-fourths page paper and turned it in. I didn't even apologize.

fork the system!


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:05 pm 
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I flunked the essay on the Praxis I. Apparently you must write a specific 5 paragraph essay and not just a coherent organized essay. They also said my vocabulary was poor.

Not looking forward to the GRE essay, but now I know to do the dumbed down middle school essay style.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:08 pm 
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It probably didn't help that fluorescent lights always induce migraines for me.

But really, I'm just an asparagus: I'm pretty much testing the departments to which I'm applying.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:09 pm 
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i actually find that really refreshing. like you said, they won't know what you wrote. and can't you submit your previous score instead, if this one is really, really bad?

and seriously, fork the GRE. i had to take it for grad school, but they didn't even care what the score was - i just had to take it. like...why? so stupid.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:18 pm 
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Can't submit my previous score, because it's expired (took it more than five years ago).

The Masters' programs that accepted me didn't give two licks about my GRE scores--they didn't even look at them (I was told later). Usually, a graduate school (like, the whole over-arching department of all graduate studies) will glance at scores, and sometimes the applications are routed through this office before going to the departments (that's where I could hurt myself).

For Humanities programs, the GRE doesn't actually show much but it's still being used because the College Board has a monopoly on higher education, and it's pretty difficult to break up big business. The reason the SAT now has a writing portion (it didn't when I was in high school) is that the University of California system was moving to do away with using SAT scores altogether (this was probably about eight or ten years ago), since the test did nothing in terms of assessing analytical ability (and don't get me started on privilege/lack of in preparing for the test). The College Board didn't want to lose money--the UC system is their biggest customer--and so, the SAT writing section was born as an artificial way of saying, "look, we have your analysis right here." A computer usually grades the essays. Someone might look at it for a total of two minutes.

I'm applying to programs for teaching Composition and Rhetoric. I don't think there's much irony, here.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:19 pm 
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tinglepants! wrote:
It probably didn't help that fluorescent lights always induce migraines for me.

But really, I'm just an asparagus: I'm pretty much testing the departments to which I'm applying.


I'm honestly not trying to be a crasshole, and you probably don't want to hear this, but here goes anyway: it sounds like you don't want to go to grad school. I'm sure you know that grad programs are getting record numbers of applications and that by "testing" weary overworked committee members an easy reason to put your application in the reject pile. GREs are indeed stupid, but if someone is comparing two excellent applications, then the GRE becomes the deciding factor. When I was in grad school, they started getting a record number of applications as the economy tanked and the secretary told me her job was to weed out people who didn't meet a minimum GPA and GRE before the committee even looked at the applications--the new minimum was higher than my own scores that got me in everywhere I applied several years before.

IOW, if you can't be bothered to jump these hoops, I think you should carefully consider your goals, because grad school isn't about the life of the mind. It's a series of stupid hurdles punctuated by rare moments of intellectual satisfaction.


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:37 pm 
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Adah wrote:
tinglepants! wrote:
It probably didn't help that fluorescent lights always induce migraines for me.

But really, I'm just an asparagus: I'm pretty much testing the departments to which I'm applying.


I'm honestly not trying to be a crasshole, and you probably don't want to hear this, but here goes anyway: it sounds like you don't want to go to grad school. I'm sure you know that grad programs are getting record numbers of applications and that by "testing" weary overworked committee members an easy reason to put your application in the reject pile. GREs are indeed stupid, but if someone is comparing two excellent applications, then the GRE becomes the deciding factor. When I was in grad school, they started getting a record number of applications as the economy tanked and the secretary told me her job was to weed out people who didn't meet a minimum GPA and GRE before the committee even looked at the applications--the new minimum was higher than my own scores that got me in everywhere I applied several years before.

IOW, if you can't be bothered to jump these hoops, I think you should carefully consider your goals, because grad school isn't about the life of the mind. It's a series of stupid hurdles punctuated by rare moments of intellectual satisfaction.


I know exactly what grad school is about; I've been through it, already. I'm applying for a second degree. I probably should have clarified that this wasn't a solicitation for advice and that, more important (and I think this is where you're coming from), it wasn't a suggestion/encouragement for others to follow suit. But I do know myself, pretty well.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:38 pm 
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Fair enough!


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:40 pm 
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nevermind.

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Last edited by Everything on Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:40 pm 
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But I also didn't mean to start arguing!

And yes, I'm about to spend a shit-ton of money on grad apps, so it's not a bad idea to question myself before I do so.

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:45 pm 
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Jeebus, yes. When applying to grad schools, some of the best guidance I got was that much of the application process is just to test how well you can jump through the hoops. This helped enormously because I am very much a "why should I spend my time performing this worthless task" kind of person.

I lost it during the last portion of my GRE. No water, no food, and fluorescent lighting for 4 hours is no good. Thankfully, I think my last portion was them testing new questions because it didn't seem to affect my score.


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:58 pm 
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This is exactly the sort of thing I would be tempted to do. I'm just going to live vicariously through you instead. And I'm going to keep my fingers crossed that you still get a decent score, because that would be hilarious.


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:18 pm 
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It is what it is. Although it's been pointed out that GRE scores are important, they are not really an indicator of how well you will do in graduate school. My scores were not good, I took the test in about 2 hrs, and knew I wasn't going to do well-- I don't test well. I still got a 4.0 in grad school. It's a shame if the schools DON'T look at your other credentials and the fact that you already have a degree, and they pass your application up because of a stupid test score.
Hugs. I know taking that stupid test sucks.


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:08 pm 
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Did they really not let you have WATER in the testing site??

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 9:17 pm 
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i took the GRE a second time when i applied to school last year because the first time i had taken it was like 4 years and 10 months earlier, so i wasn't sure whether it would be considered expired or not. apparently the school saw both scores, and my interview basically consisted of telling me my application was great and they liked me, and asking one question-- why were my scores worse the second time i took the GRE? my writing score was the same, and the math and verbal were each 10 points lower than the first time. i was so pissed, especially because i did really well! like, i got 800 on the math section the first time, and 790 the second time. who the fork would care about that? i told the interviewer that i didn't think the difference was statistically significant. she said that one of the other faculty had written down this question, so i had to give her a reason why my scores went down, for example, that i had a "bad day." so i told her i had a bad day. how stupid and bureaucratic is that? now that i'm in the program, it's actually nothing like that, but for some reason they feel the need to put you through these pointless exercises to get accepted.


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 9:39 pm 
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I think it's AWESOME that you did that. :D

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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 9:44 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 10:15 pm 
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I have to be honest, I applaud you for having the balls to do this.

I have thought about it both times that I took the GRE and then was like, "but it cost sooo much money to take this stupid forking thing."


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 Post subject: Re: So, the stupid thing I did yesterday
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 10:17 pm 
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I have no idea what that little thingamadoo means, Fee, but I'm going to assume it's a compliment, because it's coming from you.

Also, I admit: if I hadn't had a headache, I probably would have talked myself out of it (though I've wanted to do it each time I took the damn test). So, I'm only 50% balls.

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Last edited by tinglepants! on Sun Oct 31, 2010 10:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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