Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Predictors of Student Productivity in Biomedical Graduate School Applications

Have your GRE scores ever stopped you from applying to your dream graduate program? Underrepresented students may not feel up to par with the expectations of graduate school given their accessibility to test prep and a the lack of mentors from their background.

Interestingly, a new study by Joshua D. Hall at the University of North Carolina "found no correlations of test scores, grades, amount of previous research experience, or faculty interview ratings with high or low productivity among those applicants who were admitted and chose to matriculate at UNC."

Instead, for UNC graduate students, "ratings from recommendation letter writers were significantly stronger for students who published multiple first-author papers in graduate school than for those who published no first-author papers during the same timeframe."

It appears that a solid mentorship foundation may be a better key to success in graduate school than studying for standardized testing. "We conclude that the most commonly used standardized test (the general GRE) is a particularly ineffective predictive tool, but that qualitative assessments by previous mentors are more likely to identify students who will succeed in biomedical graduate research."

 For more, please check out the full study here!

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