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hamira


Nov 5, 2005, 1:29 AM

Post #1 of 115 (14523 views)
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Johns Hopkins Can't Post

I've read good things about their writing program, but I would like to hear from someone who has attended or knows someone who knows someone whathaveyou. I would also like specifics on how weighty they evaluate the Lit Subject Test on the GRE (which they require).


(This post was edited by motet on Jan 19, 2006, 7:57 AM)


rooblue


Nov 5, 2005, 10:04 AM

Post #2 of 115 (14508 views)
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Re: [hamira] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Johns Hopkins' main program is an MA -- not an MFA -- program. They recently started an MFA program, but it's very small, my understanding is it's only four or five students per year. Intensely competitive as you might imagine, and the rumor I heard is that students from the MA program get preferential admittance to the MFA program. That's strictly a rumor, though. I know two fiction writers who've been through the MA program. They both appreciated it although one person said she didn't get as much personal attention from her advisors as she'd hoped. I know nothing about their entrance requirements for scores.


lauramieko


Dec 12, 2005, 1:09 PM

Post #3 of 115 (14398 views)
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Re: [hamira] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

hi hamira,

i graduated from the MA program's final year, so i can't answer more specific questions regarding new MFA program. but i am happy to offer you some general reflections on the writing seminars' grad program.

i was very pleased with my time at hopkins. my peers in the grad workshop were excellent writers and readers, willing and able to give incisive, critical and encouraging feedback. i didn't encounter any of the gruesome "mean-ness" you hear about in some programs. i felt that both of the graduate workshop profs (Stephen Dixon & Alice McDermott) were accessible and responsive, and i've kept in touch with both of them since graduating.

i didn't feel that i had a great amount of support as a new instructor, teaching an undergrad lit/creative writing course for the first time. although billed as a TA, you'll be totally and completely responsible for everything (perhaps this is standard?). there was (and i assume, still is) a supervisor for writing sems grad student TAs; we had a short prep seminar and one teaching consultation with him during our teaching semester.

hope this helps -

lm


cymbeline


Jan 16, 2006, 3:20 PM

Post #4 of 115 (14304 views)
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Re: [hamira] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

I applied to Johns Hopkins, too--how hard was that Subject Test? Jeez. There should be a whole "forum" here devoted to that monster. It sure would have helped me if someone had told me going in that that test that is primarily a speed-reading exercise. Has anyone gotten their scores back yet? I haven't, and I took it on November 12.


gussy

e-mail user

Feb 27, 2006, 10:21 PM

Post #5 of 115 (14282 views)
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Johns Hopkins question [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi,

I just logged on for the first time to my JHU Application Status Webpage, and to my despair there is a "No" under almost all materials they should have received. Is it possible that these webpages are not updated? Has anybody else experienced the same (horrible) thing? Now I'm beginning to fear they may not have received my packet... I know, I should contact JHU right away. But I won't be able to do so until tomorrow morning. And there's a looong way till tomorrow morning, so I was hoping somebody at the forum might have good info on the JHU online system. Thanks !


sibyline


Feb 27, 2006, 10:39 PM

Post #6 of 115 (14272 views)
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Re: [gussy] Johns Hopkins question [In reply to] Can't Post

hmmm.... mine shows the same thing. must just be their system being slow to update... let us know if you find anything else out...


gussy

e-mail user

Feb 27, 2006, 10:46 PM

Post #7 of 115 (14267 views)
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Re: [sibyline] Johns Hopkins question [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks ! This is relieving. The possibility that both your packet and mine got lost on their way to JHU is so unlikely that yes, the JHU people must be slow updating the damned thing... Good, let's keep each other posted (and everyone else who's applied to JHU). Thanks again !


sarandipidy


Feb 27, 2006, 10:57 PM

Post #8 of 115 (14257 views)
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Re: [gussy] Johns Hopkins question [In reply to] Can't Post

I had a similar problem with Oregon, where it had been over a month and they hadn't logged anything, so I emailed them and they responded by sending a confirmation email and updating my site.


orangegirl


Feb 27, 2006, 11:28 PM

Post #9 of 115 (14237 views)
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Re: [gussy] Johns Hopkins question [In reply to] Can't Post

mine shows the same thing.


gussy

e-mail user

Feb 28, 2006, 11:32 AM

Post #10 of 115 (14179 views)
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Re: [orangegirl] Johns Hopkins question [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi,

I e-mailed JHU and they told me that their "new" online system still has some glitches and bugs, that's why things on our end don't look as they should. Ha.

I also asked about notifications, but they responded with an ominous silence...


clarabow


Mar 8, 2006, 4:55 PM

Post #11 of 115 (14087 views)
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Re: [gussy] Johns Hopkins question [In reply to] Can't Post

REJECTED BY MAIL TODAY FROM JHU FICTION
TIme to party.


cyclical



Mar 8, 2006, 5:16 PM

Post #12 of 115 (14071 views)
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Re: [hamira] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Really, now...are there any other major MFA programs out there that require a GRE?

"We judge every applicant by the uniqueness of their writing sample and their individual potential as a writer, but we require you to take a subjective and arbitrary standardized test along with the rest of the mindless lemmings just as a precaution, thank you very much. After all, we here at The Johns Hopkins University have no way of knowing--despite your writing sample and your undergraduate degree transcripts--whether or not you can actually spell."

Screw that.


HopperFu


Mar 8, 2006, 5:39 PM

Post #13 of 115 (14057 views)
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Re: [cyclical] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Really, now...are there any other major MFA programs out there that require a GRE?

whoops. Edited to reflect the fact that I'm a moron and didn't notice that we were talking about the GRE SUBJECT test.


(This post was edited by HopperFu on Mar 8, 2006, 5:41 PM)


mandavogel


Mar 9, 2006, 1:18 PM

Post #14 of 115 (13995 views)
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Re: [cyclical] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Well maybe I'm just a rebel (an on-the-verge-of rejection rebel, that is), but I believe Hopkins "highly recommends" the subject test, which is not exactly synonymous with "requires" so I pretended to have never read that section and sent in a tight application sans GRE-subject test. I am an English teacher, for one, and feel as though taking this test is an insult to my hard-earned degree (and professional life) and secondly, between the standard GRE and other applications, I was out of cash.

JHU is my pipe dream anyway, so I wasn't too worried about it. Just my two-sense (cents).

I hear rejection letters are in the mail and unfortunately, I'm on the opposit coast of my mail until late Saturday night, so, as you can imagine, I'm feeling a little anxious instead of enjoying the rest of my sunyn spring break (sigh).


Best of luck, all!

~Manda


cyclical



Mar 12, 2006, 12:32 PM

Post #15 of 115 (13934 views)
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Re: [mandavogel] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Well maybe I'm just a rebel (an on-the-verge-of rejection rebel, that is), but I believe Hopkins "highly recommends" the subject test, which is not exactly synonymous with "requires" so I pretended to have never read that section and sent in a tight application sans GRE-subject test. I am an English teacher, for one, and feel as though taking this test is an insult to my hard-earned degree (and professional life) and secondly, between the standard GRE and other applications, I was out of cash.

From the Johns "We Don't Care If You Are An English Teacher" Hopkins website... "Applicants to the graduate program in The Writing Seminars must submit official notification of GRE scores. The scores need to be sent by the Educational Testing Service directly to Johns Hopkins University. Please note: our Institution code is 5332; our Department code is 2503. Any application lacking GRE scores will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed" Get thee to a testing center.


sibyline


Mar 12, 2006, 5:27 PM

Post #16 of 115 (13882 views)
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Re: [cyclical] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

As Hopperfu kindly pointed out, Hopkings requires the GENERAL test but the SUBJECT test is optional, though highly recommended. So the previous poster's point is perfectly valid.


franz

e-mail user

Mar 12, 2006, 6:56 PM

Post #17 of 115 (13856 views)
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GRE scores and JHU: do they matter? [In reply to] Can't Post

For everyone's information:
I did not take the GRE Subject test for English and I got into the Writing Seminars. I did, however, study for the GREs. These were my scores:
Verbal: 700 Math: 780 Writing Section: 4.5
I don't know if these scores were a factor or not, but I'm glad I studied. I would have tanked the test otherwise. If it was the X factor that made my application a little more appealing and got me in, it was worth it.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


sibyline


Mar 12, 2006, 7:08 PM

Post #18 of 115 (13845 views)
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Re: [franz] GRE scores and JHU: do they matter? [In reply to] Can't Post

honestly franz, i doubt it played much of a role if not for the fact that you're a fantastic writer. my GRE scores were pretty similar to yours, though i scored lower in math and higher in analytical writing. i met with the three professors on the admissions committee at Cornell and none of them said anything about the GRE's. they all just talked about how they loved my writing sample. i think it's one of those things where eyebrows are raised if your score is really low, but otherwise, it doesn't add much to your application when it's clear that your writing is awesome.


franz

e-mail user

Mar 12, 2006, 7:26 PM

Post #19 of 115 (13835 views)
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Re: [sibyline] GRE scores and JHU: do they matter? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks Sibylline. I agree as far as the GRE goes, but it's probably helpful to people to know that taking the Advanced subject test isn't an issue. And my GRE score may come in handy if I pursue a second masters in Deaf Studies, which I am considering.
Right now I'm 95% for going to JHU. Brown could still change my mind, but when in the world are they going to let people know?!? I'm already on the verge of changing my ticket itinerary to the east coast for a second time. I don't want to do it a third time if I can help it. I wonder if it would be appropriate to email Brown about my travel itinerary dilemma... or maybe I should just wait.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


sibyline


Mar 12, 2006, 8:05 PM

Post #20 of 115 (13819 views)
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Re: [franz] GRE scores and JHU: do they matter? [In reply to] Can't Post

i think it's appropriate to call if you're travelling all the way across the country. good luck deciding. i'm still kinda bummed that we won't be in the same program, but we should meet up in new york sometime if you end up going to either jhu or brown.


clarabow


Mar 12, 2006, 8:18 PM

Post #21 of 115 (13811 views)
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Re: [sibyline] GRE scores and JHU: do they matter? [In reply to] Can't Post

Sybyline, did you get into UMass Fiction like Franz? Is that what you mean? If so, congrats.

Franz, JHU is awesome. I hope you get into Brown, but I know you'll be happy at JHU. If you're wondering...I bet it was writing that got you in. My verbal and analytical writing scores were higher than yours, but I was rejected from Johns Hopkins.

Good luck!


clarabow


Mar 12, 2006, 8:22 PM

Post #22 of 115 (13807 views)
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Re: [clarabow] GRE scores and JHU: do they matter? [In reply to] Can't Post

Sorry, Sibyline, I just remembered you're going to Cornell. Again, congrats!


cyclical



Mar 12, 2006, 10:45 PM

Post #23 of 115 (13783 views)
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Re: [sibyline] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
As Hopperfu kindly pointed out, Hopkings requires the GENERAL test but the SUBJECT test is optional, though highly recommended. So the previous poster's point is perfectly valid.



That's just super, but I wasn't attempting to question the validity of the previous poster. GENERAL, SUBJECT, OBJECT, DRIVER'S...it's still a standarized test, isn't it?

Maybe my opinion that standardized tests for grad programs that don't require medical boards or Bar examinations as a bit overboard is out of whack, but then again, I'm not nearly accomplished as most of the posters here, so what do I know. Me like to write muchly.


sibyline


Mar 12, 2006, 10:54 PM

Post #24 of 115 (13775 views)
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Re: [cyclical] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

you quoted mandavogel's post in which she said that she applied without having taken the GRE subject test, and then quoted the portion of the JHU site that instructs people to send their GRE tests. then your post ended with "get thee to a testing center."

i fail to see how one could conclude that you were not questioning mandavogel's line of reasoning based on what you actually wrote. she said that she sent in a tight application *without* the *subject* test, which to me clearly implied that she took the *general* test. so she did go to a testing center. she just didn't do it twice.


cyclical



Mar 12, 2006, 11:06 PM

Post #25 of 115 (13767 views)
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Re: [sibyline] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

You got me there, Matlock. I was really just trying to bash Johns Hopkins.

If it wasn't for you and those meddling kids, I'd have gotten away with it.


clarabow


Mar 13, 2006, 12:20 AM

Post #26 of 115 (5109 views)
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Re: [cyclical] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

I totally got waitlisted at JHU...but you can't diss it, b/c it's still awesome (even tho it rejected me). I mean, come on: it's got Stephen Dixon, ALICE MCDERMOT, John Irwin...so many other incredible faculty. How can you put it down? How can you not go there? Ahh! Wish I had gotten in - SO BAD!


mandavogel


Mar 13, 2006, 1:13 PM

Post #27 of 115 (5080 views)
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Re: [clarabow] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

SIBYLINE--

You rock...thanks for defending me, I felt a little attacked there! I mean, I can read, ya know. haha. Anyway, doesn't matter now since I've been rejected and I'm sure it had nothing to do with GRE scores. Thanks again, though for defending my honor (which is, as usual, in question. haha.)

CLARABOW:

Did you get watlisted at JHU? I thought you said you were rejected?! I do not consider a waitlist a rejection. I consider a real NO (which I got from them) a rejection b/c it means there's zero chance!

Best of luck, either way. You are so encouraging--you deserve it!


clarabow


Mar 13, 2006, 1:26 PM

Post #28 of 115 (5067 views)
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Re: [mandavogel] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

whoops almost posted this under my roommate's account (yeah, i dragged her into the evil clutches of the speakeasy).

i don't know why i wrote waitlisted. probably losing my mind from the waiting.

i was flat-out rejected at JHU.

bah.


sibyline


Mar 13, 2006, 1:35 PM

Post #29 of 115 (5057 views)
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Re: [mandavogel] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
SIBYLINE--

You rock...thanks for defending me, I felt a little attacked there! I mean, I can read, ya know. haha. Anyway, doesn't matter now since I've been rejected and I'm sure it had nothing to do with GRE scores. Thanks again, though for defending my honor (which is, as usual, in question. haha.)


ha ha. no problem. i actually wrote an even snarkier response to the matlock comment, but i decided not to bite. sorry about the rejection. if it makes you feel any better, i was rejected too.


motet
Dana Davis / Moderator
e-mail user

Mar 13, 2006, 2:14 PM

Post #30 of 115 (5035 views)
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Re: [cyclical] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
You got me there, Matlock. I was really just trying to bash Johns Hopkins.

If it wasn't for you and those meddling kids, I'd have gotten away with it.



cyclical, everone here is just trying to be helpful and from what I can see, trying in a respectful and genuine way. So....ease up on the sarcasm, OK?


Dana Davis
Speakeasy Administrator


(This post was edited by motet on Mar 15, 2006, 6:08 PM)


Clench Million
Charles

Mar 15, 2006, 3:36 PM

Post #31 of 115 (4971 views)
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Re: [cyclical] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Its pretty much been said, but even if the GRE test is stupid and doesn't measure much... it is required by like 75% of MFA programs. I don't see any reason to single JHU out here... for all we know its a decision from the administration, not the writing program.

That said, I still haven't heard a peep from JHU and I live close to Baltimore. Haven't all the rejections and acceptances gone out yet?


franz

e-mail user

Mar 15, 2006, 7:22 PM

Post #32 of 115 (4939 views)
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other accepted students for JHU? [In reply to] Can't Post

Does anybody know of anybody else who has been accepted for JHU, in either fiction or poetry? (I'm in fiction.) I would really like to get in touch with other acceptees. The odds may seem long, but then HopperFu and Sybiline did find each other, after all.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


bigcities


Mar 22, 2006, 2:28 AM

Post #33 of 115 (4887 views)
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Re: [cymbeline] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey, I just heard from JHU (or, more specifically, Stephen Dixon) last Thursday - a surprise, considering that a) I didn't take the GRE Subject Test, b) my undergrad GPA was about 2.9 (3.2 in my major), c) my foreign language skills are remedial at best, d) I got my BA from some state school in the midwest, and e) I've only been out of school for one short, temp work-laden year. Earlier today, I filed and shredded about thirty pounds of paper for some random business in Midtown. Come August, I'll be teaching undergraduate comp. Thank god I learned how to write.


sibyline


Mar 22, 2006, 10:59 AM

Post #34 of 115 (4855 views)
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Re: [bigcities] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Hey, I just heard from JHU (or, more specifically, Stephen Dixon) last Thursday - a surprise, considering that a) I didn't take the GRE Subject Test, b) my undergrad GPA was about 2.9 (3.2 in my major), c) my foreign language skills are remedial at best, d) I got my BA from some state school in the midwest, and e) I've only been out of school for one short, temp work-laden year. Earlier today, I filed and shredded about thirty pounds of paper for some random business in Midtown. Come August, I'll be teaching undergraduate comp. Thank god I learned how to write.


That's awesome, bigcities! Congratulations. It's nice to see that Franz has a friend. Are you in fiction? I go on and on about Alice McDermott every chance I get. By midtown I assume you mean New York? Franz, your fellow Hopkins acceptee, and a number of us are planning to get together in the Village on Saturday, April 1. Message me if you're interested in joining us.


franz

e-mail user

Mar 22, 2006, 1:02 PM

Post #35 of 115 (4822 views)
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Re: [bigcities] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Congrats, bigcities! Have you decided one way or another for sure? I'm about 95% sure I will go to Hopkins. I'll be visiting Baltimore and the campus next week to see how I like it. I've been corresponding with some of the current students and if you have any questions or want to compare notes, just message me.
btw, you should post the news in "the waiting game" forum-- these messages in the smaller threads tend to get lost.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


Clench Million
Charles

Mar 22, 2006, 11:29 PM

Post #36 of 115 (4782 views)
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Re: [franz] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

I still haven't heard a peep from JHU. Guess I need to call them tomorrow...


franz

e-mail user

Mar 23, 2006, 1:59 AM

Post #37 of 115 (4765 views)
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Re: [bigcities] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

btw, what's your state school in the midwest? I'm from Iowa City-- went to the U of Iowa. Basically another nameless state school, unless we're talking writing.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


bigcities


Mar 23, 2006, 1:15 PM

Post #38 of 115 (4736 views)
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Re: [sibyline] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To

In Reply To
Hey, I just heard from JHU (or, more specifically, Stephen Dixon) last Thursday - a surprise, considering that a) I didn't take the GRE Subject Test, b) my undergrad GPA was about 2.9 (3.2 in my major), c) my foreign language skills are remedial at best, d) I got my BA from some state school in the midwest, and e) I've only been out of school for one short, temp work-laden year. Earlier today, I filed and shredded about thirty pounds of paper for some random business in Midtown. Come August, I'll be teaching undergraduate comp. Thank god I learned how to write.


That's awesome, bigcities! Congratulations. It's nice to see that Franz has a friend. Are you in fiction? I go on and on about Alice McDermott every chance I get. By midtown I assume you mean New York? Franz, your fellow Hopkins acceptee, and a number of us are planning to get together in the Village on Saturday, April 1. Message me if you're interested in joining us.



Unfortunately, I'm going to be out of town that weekend. I hope the get-together goes well, though...


Clench Million
Charles

Mar 30, 2006, 2:56 AM

Post #39 of 115 (4692 views)
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Re: [bigcities] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Waitlisted :(

You two sure you dont' want to go somewhere else?


Glinda Bamboo


Sep 10, 2006, 6:35 PM

Post #40 of 115 (4616 views)
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Re: Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm interested in applying to the JHU MFA program this year, but I keep hearing mixed things. Does this program encourage experimental writing, like Brown? I don't consider my fiction experimental and I wouldn't want to apply to a school if I have no chance from the beginning.

Also, any insight on their foreign language requirement? I can't tell if you have to take an exam near the end of your time in the MFA program or if you have to take one even to get in.

Thanks!


sibyline


Sep 11, 2006, 7:16 PM

Post #41 of 115 (4575 views)
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Re: [Glinda Bamboo] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I'm interested in applying to the JHU MFA program this year, but I keep hearing mixed things. Does this program encourage experimental writing, like Brown? I don't consider my fiction experimental and I wouldn't want to apply to a school if I have no chance from the beginning.

Also, any insight on their foreign language requirement? I can't tell if you have to take an exam near the end of your time in the MFA program or if you have to take one even to get in.

I'm not at Hopkins but I know a lot about the program since I have a friend there. I think one of its strengths is the diversity of the faculty in terms of style (Stephen Dixon on the experimental side and Alice McDermott on the more traditional), so I don't think you'd have to worry about needing to be experimental in the same way as Brown.

And I hear that the foreign language requirement isn't tough. I seem to remember my friend saying it's open book translation, but don't quote me on that.


Banyon


Sep 13, 2006, 8:00 PM

Post #42 of 115 (4522 views)
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Introduction/Critique [In reply to] Can't Post

From JH's website:

"MFA applicants should include in their writing sample a two-page introduction and critique of their work. This statement should give admissions faculty a view to the scope and thoughtfulness of the work submitted and a sense of the student's ability to contribute in the writing workshops."

I'd love to hear from others who are applying (or who applied in the past) about how they dealt with this. I like the idea that I get to talk about my work, but I don't know how to talk about and critique ten poems in two pages. What if I just focused on one or two? I also hate that this is the introduction to my work--I would far prefer the kind folks at JH to read my writing sample before hearing me yap about it. It also kind of weirds me out that this statement is in place of a regular old personal statement or SOP.

Also--is this two pages single or double spaced? I assume double. Yeah, yeah, I know I can e-mail them, but I figured someone on here would probably know.

Thanks guys.

-Banyon


renapoo


Sep 20, 2006, 4:37 AM

Post #43 of 115 (4472 views)
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Re: [Glinda Bamboo] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

I emailed them about the language requirement; apparently you take the test in the fall before you enroll, but it doesn't sound too hard, as some people just brush up on their highschool spanish or whatnot in between their acceptance and enrollment.

As for the Statement/Critique, I'm totally flipping out about it. I'm applying for fiction, so it may be easier to come up with a 2-4 page crit of 2-3 stories, but still. It's like the meanest task an admissions committee has ever come up with. If anybody has any ideas for how to approach this statement of doom, let's hear em.


__________



Sep 20, 2006, 4:58 AM

Post #44 of 115 (4471 views)
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Re: [renapoo] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Tell them your biggest problem is you're a bit of a perfectionist.


six five four three two one 0 ->


frolicaway


Sep 22, 2006, 3:18 AM

Post #45 of 115 (4424 views)
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Re: [renapoo] Johns Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Hm. Yeah, that does sound kind of mean. I haven't actually looked at their application process yet, although I'm planning to apply there, too.

I guess, in a way, it could be seen as an opportunity to just blab about what the work is saying? I'll probably focus on what I know is unusual about my work, then explain why I made this and that choice. There's enough that's intentionally bizarre about my manuscript that I don't think I'll have a difficult time. (My Purpose Statements, on the other hand... ugh!)



In Reply To
I emailed them about the language requirement; apparently you take the test in the fall before you enroll, but it doesn't sound too hard, as some people just brush up on their highschool spanish or whatnot in between their acceptance and enrollment.

As for the Statement/Critique, I'm totally flipping out about it. I'm applying for fiction, so it may be easier to come up with a 2-4 page crit of 2-3 stories, but still. It's like the meanest task an admissions committee has ever come up with. If anybody has any ideas for how to approach this statement of doom, let's hear em.



Banyon


Oct 2, 2006, 12:17 PM

Post #46 of 115 (4363 views)
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GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

JH's website says they recommend applicants take the GRE subject test. I sent them an e-mail asking about it, and received a very polite e-mail in response within a few hours. I'm impressed. Here's the news:

"The GRE subject test is recommended, but not required. Some
applicants take it, many do not---it really is totally up to you. If
you do particularly well on standardized tests, maybe you'd like to
consider taking it, but if not, I don't think you'd be adversely
affected. Hope this is a little helpful."

Hooray!


BridgetB


Oct 11, 2006, 10:19 AM

Post #47 of 115 (4290 views)
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Re: [Banyon] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

GRE subject test and the difficulty of getting into Hopkins aside, does anyone have any experience in the Hopkins MFA progam? Would you recommend it? What is the culture like-- are the students collaborative or competitive (or both)? Is the small size of the program and advantage or disadvantage? Are the professors avaiable and helpful?

Thanks!

Bridget


franz

e-mail user

Oct 11, 2006, 5:32 PM

Post #48 of 115 (4270 views)
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Re: [BridgetB] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi all,
I am a first year student in fiction at Hopkins. Last year at this time I was stressing out about applications and I was a Speakeasy addict. I'd be happy to answer any questions about the program.

A few things, and answers to some questions:
GRE subject test: I didn't take it.
Language exam: A pure formality, and supposedly not that hard. (I haven't taken it yet.)
Two page critique of work: I had fun writing it up. Figure out ways to introduce and analyze your work, while tying it in to your own life experience (at least that's what I think).
What's the program like? It's amazing. I'm so happy to be here. Alice McDermott is the best writing teacher I've ever had. She alone is worth being here. Stephen Dixon is retiring at the end of the year, so there is some uncertainty about that. Those of us in the fiction program are not incredibly excited about the top candidate, though he is rather prolific. I'm not an expert on poetry, but Mary Jo Salter is on board now. There have been mixed reviews about her teaching style.
My classmates are wonderful, though that's something that may vary from year to year. When I visited last year, the fiction workshop didn't seem particularly cohesive as a community. This year, it is. I can promise any incoming students that the current first-year students are great.
The opportunity to teach for two years is fabulous. We're all really enjoying this part of the program. And there are all kinds of perks-- for example, we have our own librarian to do research for us.

Some downsides of the program:
Baltimore is not that great-- on the bright side, I like it a lot more than I did when I first moved here, and the program makes that worth it.
Diversity-- I want to see more cultural and gender diversity-- this isn't as much of a problem in poetry as in fiction. Too many guys in the fiction workshop! I hope we have more women next year.
Trial by fire teaching-- we're thrown into the teaching process from the get-go. We were incredibly stressed out about it at first, but for me this has ended up being an upside, not a downside.
Cut the cupola-- Right now, we have the most awesome classroom-- right beneath the belltower of Gilman Hall, the main building on campus. Well, that's getting grand-fathered out at the end of the year. We're all disappointed about that-- it has 12-foot tall windows, an amazing view, lots of light.

BTW, I have a blog if you want to check it out-- I've written more extensively about Hopkins and Baltimore in there.
unstruck-sound.blogspot.com
Feel free to ask me any other questions.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


BridgetB


Oct 11, 2006, 5:45 PM

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Re: [franz] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks Franz, it's really helpful to have an insiders' viewpoint. Just wondering: I know there are only 6 fiction applicants in each incoming class; do you know how many applicants are vying for those positions? (Congrats on being one of the lucky few.) Also, what are you teaching and how many students do you have?

I live in DC, so I'm passingly familiar with Baltimore, aka Charm City. Maybe this is the wrong way to be thinking, but at least rent it cheap, right? (Cheaper than DC anyway...)


franz

e-mail user

Oct 12, 2006, 11:00 AM

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Re: [BridgetB] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Thanks Franz, it's really helpful to have an insiders' viewpoint. Just wondering: I know there are only 6 fiction applicants in each incoming class; do you know how many applicants are vying for those positions? (Congrats on being one of the lucky few.) Also, what are you teaching and how many students do you have?

I live in DC, so I'm passingly familiar with Baltimore, aka Charm City. Maybe this is the wrong way to be thinking, but at least rent it cheap, right? (Cheaper than DC anyway...)



We have 9 1st year students this year, only 2 second year students (this is fiction--poetry is more balanced in 1st/2nd year students). This is because Hopkins switched from a one-year to a two-year program three years ago, and many of of the people in the one-year program ended up in the two-year program. (Yes, a little confusing.) I'm not sure how many will be admitted next year, since the program is still balancing out.
How many applicants? I think there were about 200 or so for fiction last year?

I'm teaching Intro to Fiction and Poetry (we all are). The great thing about this class is that we get a lot of structure but we're free to be flexible in the way we teach it. We need to be, since so much is crammed into the class. This semester I'm teaching Frost, Gwendolyn Brooks, Seamus Heaney, Nabokov, Welty, Henry James, with a few theoretical books thrown in. That's on top of the students writing creative assignments (everything from memoir to short story to iambic pentameter), and everyone gets workshopped twice. (Quite likely I'll be teaching IFP-2 at some point, which includes the likes of Calvino-- IFP-1 is realist/metrical stuff, IFP-2 more fabulist/experimental stuff.) I really like that I'll be getting two years of teaching experience, and will have experience with teaching creative writing, workshopping, and standard lit, all in one. I have 17 students, which is the max. Some of my classmates have only ten students. The students here are amazing, and this is something to consider for any teaching job. I went to Iowa for undergrad, and my classmates in the English department just didn't work as hard or participate as much as the students do here. I'd recommend to anybody to take that in consideration in terms of teaching-- how good will your students be? Because having students this great makes my job more enjoyable, fulfilling, and inspiring.

Yes, rent is cheaper than it is in D.C. Expect to pay in the range of $500-700. I pay $600 and I have an awesome two-bedroom rowhome with one of the other fiction students. Charles Village, Hampden and Mount Vernon are all close to Hopkins and are relatively hip (compared to the rest of the city anyway, but not compared to Portland, Oregon, where I came form-- so it's all relative).

For all of you considering Hopkins-- this was the one school I thought I absolutely wouldn't get into. I thought it would be stuffy, considering how the website is worded, and Hopkins does have that reputation. But this is not the case at all with the program. As far as styles, we have a wide range. There are definitely several more experimental students, and a few more conventional. I think Alice's advice has been amazing regardless of what style we write in. She always gets to the nuts and bolts of a piece.

Bridget, since you live in D.C., you should visit at some point. I'd be happy to meet up over tea (in Baltimore, not D.C.) I'm in fiction, which are you? I could give some info about poetry, though I'm not quite as informed.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


plumagemour


Oct 12, 2006, 12:33 PM

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Re: [franz] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

hi franz, i'd love to hear anything you have to say about poetry at john hopkins


BridgetB


Oct 12, 2006, 1:12 PM

Post #52 of 115 (3985 views)
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Re: [plumagemour] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi Franz,

I'm fiction. I' love the thought of cheap rent in Charm City. (Sigh... as I think of housing cost in DC.)

I don't have a car so I'm unlikely to make it to Baltimore any time soon, though perhaps at some point I'll come to visit campus. In which case, I'd love to sit down for a spot of tea.

Bridget


renapoo


Oct 12, 2006, 1:56 PM

Post #53 of 115 (3976 views)
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Re: [franz] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

First off, hats off to you (and Hop & Sib), who take time out of your busy grad student schedules to dole out wisdom to those of us currently applying. I've been unsure about the J.H.U. statement for months, but I think your comments cleared up what I need to do for that. I was also worried that the atmosphere at J.H. would be stuffy, so it's great to know that your experience has been otherwise.

But I can't believe they have you teaching poetry!!! This seriously freaks me out. I know NOTHING about poetry. I'd probably have trouble teaching fiction written before 1850, but POETRY? Forget about it. I hope they give you a cheat sheet or something before tossing you to the wolves--er, undergraduates.


augustmaria


Oct 12, 2006, 3:49 PM

Post #54 of 115 (3960 views)
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Re: [renapoo] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm a first-year fiction student at Indiana and I'm teaching poetry in an introductory creative writing course, and it's not as bad as I thought it would be. Teaching is actually my favorite thing about the program so far.


renapoo


Oct 12, 2006, 5:27 PM

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Re: [augustmaria] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

I wouldn't mind teaching poetry in a creative writing class so much. But if it were more of a survey course, I don't know what I'd do. It's not that I expect it to be so bad for me, I just don't feel like I'm an appropriate teacher for that subject, and the kids taking the class would be getting kind of screwed over.

I'd be interested to know--when they assigned you to teach a class at Indiana, were your particular skills and experience taken into consideration? Or is it more of a crapshoot?


augustmaria


Oct 12, 2006, 7:42 PM

Post #56 of 115 (3923 views)
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Re: [renapoo] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

All the first-years teach the same course. That's one of the big pluses of the program here, I think--we're all getting the same amount of money and the same teaching load (for the first year, anyway).


plumagemour


Oct 12, 2006, 9:58 PM

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Re: [augustmaria] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

just out of curiousity, how much money are you all getting?


augustmaria


Oct 13, 2006, 10:14 AM

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We get $5,000 in fellowships for the first year, plus about $750 (maybe a little more? I can't remember) a month for teaching. Tuition and most fees are waived, plus health insurance.


augustmaria


Oct 13, 2006, 2:55 PM

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Re: [augustmaria] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

And in response to the question that has since disappeared about whether or not that's enough to live on, the answer is a definite yes. I'm single and only providing for myself, but I think you'll find that $12,000 - $13,000 a year is pretty darn good in the world of MFA funding.


BridgetB


Oct 13, 2006, 4:03 PM

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Re: [augustmaria] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

augustamaria, just to clarify, the funding your talking about is for Indiana, not Hopkins, right?



franz

e-mail user

Oct 13, 2006, 5:33 PM

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At Hopkins, we all get $14,000 a year, full tuition paid, and health insurance. I think it's reasonable, considering Baltimore isn't that expensive. Some of my classmates are also tutoring for extra cash. Regarding teaching, we were all stressed about it before we started, but it's really not too big of a deal. Three weeks ago I didn't even know what scansion was, or the difference between a stressed and unstressed mark. Well, now I do, and I was able to teach it well enough. I have no problem admitting to my students that scansion and poetry isn't my strong point-- fiction is. And I always remind myself that however little I think I know, I do know more than my students, who are only 18 or 19 years old. Plus, we have a lot of support if we need it. In many ways, teaching is the best thing about my program. Sure, I prefer to be in workshop or off on my own writing. But it's the teaching that makes me feel I'm really getting something from this, that having an MFA really will qualify me to do something other than sit at my desk and write.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


Banyon


Nov 21, 2006, 9:52 AM

Post #62 of 115 (3766 views)
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Re: [franz] GRE Subject Test [In reply to] Can't Post

Franz,

I'm applying to Johns Hopkins, and I was curious about how you handled the personal statement/critique. I'm pretty sure mine blows. Any chance you would be willing to e-mail me a copy of your statement? I apologize if this is an incredibly rude request:o) I'm at aopenn @ yahoo.com.

-Banyon


jargreen

e-mail user

Nov 22, 2006, 10:07 PM

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What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hello Writers,

I'm new and was wondering if anyone who's been accepted to Johns Hopkins' fiction MFA program has shared their work with the forum. I'm curious to know if there are particular styles or themes that appeal to the faculty/reviewers.

Best,
Ryan
jargreen@indiana.edu


(This post was edited by jargreen on Nov 22, 2006, 10:10 PM)


blueragtop


Nov 23, 2006, 2:41 PM

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There's no way of knowing what anybody wants. If they like your work, they'll take you, if they don't, you don't have a chance.


Fear&Loathing


Nov 23, 2006, 7:48 PM

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Re: [melos] What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

I got a look at the JHU site. There's a place to upload a Sample of Work, and there is also a place to upload a Statement of Purpose or Writing Sample (in the case of ...blah, blah, blah... MFA candidates). If anyone's been on this site yet, are you uploading the Statement and Writing Sample as one document into the last option where you upload a Statement of Purpose or Writing Sample? That seems like the place to put it, but I could be stupid here. Thanks.


franz

e-mail user

Dec 1, 2006, 2:41 PM

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Re: [jargreen] What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

Last year I think it was Alice McDermott and Stephen Dixon who decided on the composition of the workshop here. For fiction, I'm guessing that Alice will be a big part of the decision this coming year but I don't know about Stephen since he's retiring at the end of the year. We do have a wide range of styles in workshop. That includes both experimental voices and traditional voices. I will say Alice is into strong characterization and subtlety, but then who isn't? Don't assume because you have a certain type of voice you won't fit here. For those of you who are experimental, remember that John Barth spent his career here, and Dixon has also had a huge influence. It looks like the program might be taking a turn for the more traditional (it seems to be the direction that the chair, who is one of the Poetry Faculty, wants to take it). Hopefully, though, we'll keep a mix.
Of course the most important thing is good, polished writing. Show the work you're planning on submitting to as many different people as you can and get their opinions. I moved here from Portland, OR., and I was part of a workshop there. I don't think I would have gotten into this program if I hadn't gotten my fellow workshoppers' valuable feedback.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


Fear&Loathing


Dec 3, 2006, 1:57 PM

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Re: [franz] What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks Franz for taking part in this forum. Has Johns Hopkins had many foreign writers or nationals in the program before, either as students or faculty? I'm a US citizen, but my mother is of another nationality. My writing has reflected a lot of that. I liked the curriculum and read McDermott's Charming Billy several months ago, and I decided to apply primarily on these two things. My application has been sent, so it doesn't really matter. But I was, nonetheless, curious, especially since you have a connection to SE Asia, et cetera. Again, thank you for this and the informative blog The Inner Ear.


franz

e-mail user

Dec 3, 2006, 2:25 PM

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Re: [Fear&Loathing] What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

Personally I would like it if the program at Hopkins had a more multi-cultural perspective in terms of who is in the workshop. I certainly don't think the international will work against you. Overall the writing itself is the most important thing. I can say that last year I wasn't sure if my deafness would work for or against me-- would programs consider this perspective to be a unique cultural voice that hasn't been represented in fiction? Ultimately I don't know how much of an impact this had, though my application was heavily weighed towards the Deaf perspective. I will say that from my own perspective, the way your worldview is unique should help your application, and I hope others feel the same way.
I'm glad you like the blog-- I've been so busy with the program I haven't updated it for a while, but I will soon.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


plumagemour


Dec 3, 2006, 3:52 PM

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Re: [franz] What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

if you don't mind my asking, what happens when people workshop your pieces? or when you have insight on someone else's work that you want to share with the rest of the class?
i mean, assuming that not everybody knows sign language.


Fear&Loathing


Dec 3, 2006, 4:38 PM

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Deaf does not = mute.
Some people who are deaf can read lips.
Lots of interesting technologies too. Speech recognition technology is coming along, but it hasn't hit the mass market except when you call your local phone company to ask a question.
I'm only speaking for myself here. I don't know much. Use your imagination.


franz

e-mail user

Dec 4, 2006, 2:50 PM

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Re: [plumagemour] What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

I appreciate the comment from Fear and Loathing. It's a wild assumption that I can't hear anything and that I communicate using only sign language. Many deaf people aren't 100% deaf-- to compare it to other cultural backgrounds, if I were half black and half white, wouldn't I still identify myself as African American? If I were mostly attracted to men but had some attraction to women, wouldn't I still identify myself as gay? So if I'm 90% deaf and I call myself deaf, that doesn't mean I'm 100% deaf. I read lips, I speak, and I've played guitar for ten years. Granted, I need a hearing aid to do all of this, and I will eventually get a cochlear implant. And unfortunately, I'm not even that proficient in sign language, though I'm working on it.
I'm not easily offended, but many deaf people would be by these kinds of assumptions. Deaf culture, like any other culture, is not an all or nothing black and white issue.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


plumagemour


Dec 4, 2006, 10:07 PM

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Re: [franz] What does it take? [In reply to] Can't Post

i wasn't aware that people who weren't completely deaf referred to themselves as such. anything to a different degree i've only known to be referred to as a hearing impairment. i guess my assumption came from the fact that you expressed curiousity in how your deafness would be received. my basic thinking being, why would anyone care or hold anything against you in terms of choosing you for their program the basis of your program, thus leading me to believe you were infering that your [complete] deafness would complicate the workshop process.
in any case, given the vague nature of your post, i don't really appreciate your implication of my being disrespectful.
but in the interest of keeping on topic, i'm going to drop this


Glinda Bamboo


Dec 5, 2006, 12:37 PM

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Re: Baltimore [In reply to] Can't Post

I couldn't help but notice that some people seem down on this program because it's located in Baltimore. What's so wrong with Baltimore? Maybe it's not the greatest city in the country, and maybe it has its share of crime, but it's really not so bad. I never lived in Baltimore, but I did spend several years in Maryland and I think there are many redeeming qualities to the area. You've got the Chesapeake Bay, beaches within a short drive, and you can easily hop a train or bus to DC or Philly. I wouldn't want to live in Baltimore forever, but if I got into JHU I think I'd actually be excited to spend a few years there. It's really not so bad.


plumagemour


Dec 5, 2006, 2:03 PM

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Re: [Glinda Bamboo] Baltimore [In reply to] Can't Post

hey glinda, yeah i feel the same way. aside from the crime, which for whatever reason, a lot of the areas surrounding the schools i'm applying to have high rates of, i dont understand all the negative views of baltimore. of course i've never been there. but from what i read up on it and via some casual google imaging it doesnt seem bad at all. a girl i met who was raised in baltimore and had some negative opinions but no real concrete complaints. maybe my tastes are just different from the general public. people always talk about what a hellhole san jose, ca is and i was raised there and have no ptoblems with it.


franz

e-mail user

Dec 6, 2006, 1:55 PM

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Re: [plumagemour] Baltimore [In reply to] Can't Post

Baltimore is not that bad, but my take is that it's not that great either. There's more than enough stuff to keep you busy for a couple of years, though. I was born and raised in Iowa City, and there's more going on here than there (Iowa applicants, take note). Yeah, there's a lot of crime here, but it's pretty safe around Hopkins. Hampden, Charles Village, Mt. Vernon, Federal Hill and Fells Point are all relatively cool areas. Rent's not bad, the winter weather is pleasant (the summers are supposedly hellish), the campus is lovely. The students here work incredibly hard and it's definitely not a party school, which is a good thing, but for people who want more of the arts scene, there is MICA and Bolton Hill. It's close to D.C. and not that far from Philly or NY either. The hardest thing for me is just not living close to nature anymore. I moved out here from Portland, OR., which is absolutely wonderful, so it was a big step down for me.

btw, one last thing about the whole Deaf issue. I used to call myself "hearing-impaired," but it's the equivalent of being called "non-white." In other words, being termed what I'm not (hearing) versus being part of a vibrant culture with its own language (Deaf). That's really the whole distinction now. And now to return to the thread.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


hamholio


Dec 6, 2006, 2:10 PM

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Re: [franz] Baltimore [In reply to] Can't Post

Franz --

Just want to thank you for your comments throughout this thread. I'm another Iowa City dweller (although, I'm more of a recent transplant from Cedar Rapids) and Hopkins is at the top of my list. I can't imagine not applying to JHU because it's in Baltimore -- for me, the faculty trumps the location, and Hopkins has to have close to the best, if not the best.


renapoo


Dec 18, 2006, 12:40 AM

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Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

So, I tried to submit my online application to JHU complete with writing samples, resume, and S.O.P., all uploaded as .doc files. I put my name in the upper right hand corner of everything (as the Writing Seminars website says I should, for the writing sample at least), but then when I preview my application the system has already put my name up there, along with "writing sample," or "resume," or whatever category it is. This text overlaps and makes the whole document look messy.

Anybody send in this application already and deal with this issue? Is what you see in "preview" exactly what gets printed out by the readers? Should I take out my name, even though the W.S. site says to put it in? I'm going to try to call them tomorrow, but I'm not sure who to ask about this and they might give me the runaround.

Thanks! If I find out anything I'll post it...


Glinda Bamboo


Dec 18, 2006, 11:20 AM

Post #78 of 115 (4105 views)
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Re: [renapoo] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

I haven't yet submitted my JHU app, so I'm no help...but I'd love to hear the news when you get an answer. I'd guess that the preview is how it will print, so you can probably take off your name and info. But let us know when you find out. Thanks!


Banyon


Dec 18, 2006, 12:00 PM

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I haven't yet submitted my JHU app, but... my guess is that you only need to put your name on everything if you're submitting a hard copy of your application. Does JHU ask you to also send a hard copy directly to the writing department?


renapoo


Dec 18, 2006, 12:22 PM

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Re: [Banyon] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

No, it's weird. They say you have to submit your writing sample online, then tell you to put your name on your writing sample. But when you actually do that, it looks messy as hell.

I e-mailed them to find out. I should probably call, but I'm scared of the phone, and this is the kind of question that makes me look anal and crazy, so...


HopperFu


Dec 18, 2006, 12:58 PM

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In Reply To
...this is the kind of question that makes me look anal and crazy, so...


Just tell them your name is Banyon, consequences be damned. ;)


renapoo


Dec 18, 2006, 5:13 PM

Post #82 of 115 (4048 views)
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Re: [renapoo] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

OK, this has come from JHU:

"I suspect that the on-line system automatically puts your name in the
upper right hand corner of the writing sample, but I'm not 100% sure
since this is the first year we're using this system. Sorry for the confusion."

Hm. Reassuring but mildly inconclusive. I guess I'll put my name in the footer of all my docs, just to be sure.


Banyon


Dec 18, 2006, 10:36 PM

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In Reply To

In Reply To
...this is the kind of question that makes me look anal and crazy, so...


Just tell them your name is Banyon, consequences be damned. ;)



Ha! Yes. Everyone, feel free to use my name when asking stupid questions at JHU. I already asked them a question along the lines of "OMG, I read on your website that the subject GRE is suggested and not required... but is it STRONGLY suggested or MILDLY suggested? And could you give me an exact percentage of the number of students admitted each year who have taken it? Or how about a percentage of the number of students admitted for poetry????"

No one could possibly do more damage to my good name than I already have:o)


(This post was edited by Banyon on Dec 18, 2006, 10:37 PM)


Glinda Bamboo


Jan 9, 2007, 8:50 AM

Post #84 of 115 (3945 views)
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Re: [Banyon] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

I've already submitted my JHU app, so this won't help me, but maybe it can help others. When you completed the online app, did you upload your writing sample and intro/critique as one document or two? I uploaded them separately, but when I got down to the statement part it looked like they wanted the intro in the same document as the writing sample. So you just tack on your intro on pages one and two and your sample starts on page three. Did anyone do it that way? I'm sure it ultimately doesn't matter, but I'm just curious what everyone else did.


Banyon


Jan 9, 2007, 11:14 AM

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In Reply To
I've already submitted my JHU app, so this won't help me, but maybe it can help others. When you completed the online app, did you upload your writing sample and intro/critique as one document or two? I uploaded them separately, but when I got down to the statement part it looked like they wanted the intro in the same document as the writing sample. So you just tack on your intro on pages one and two and your sample starts on page three. Did anyone do it that way? I'm sure it ultimately doesn't matter, but I'm just curious what everyone else did.



I'm pretty sure I uploaded mine as two separate documents. I don't remember seeing anything about putting the intro with the writing sample, but I am *really* incompetent with these things. My current feelings: If i get in anywhere, it will be a miracle!


alishein


Jan 11, 2007, 12:41 AM

Post #86 of 115 (3872 views)
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at first, i thought that the 2 page critique/statement of purpose was supposed to be a cover for the writing sample but when I was doing the app online (I was just working on it) it definitely wanted the 2 page thing uploaded separately. there were even special instructions right there in the app. telling you what the MFA program was looking for -- so I'm certain that we all did it right.


LateApplicant


Jan 11, 2007, 12:51 PM

Post #87 of 115 (3828 views)
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Re: [alishein] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

FWIW, I wrapped up my JHU app. last night, and it was exactly as alishein said: the online system wanted two separate uploads, one for the writing sample, one for the critique/statement of purpose. And yes, it did explicitly say something like, "Those applying to The Writing Seminars should upload, in lieu of a Statement of Purpose, a critique of their work in which blah..."


cprtop77


Jan 11, 2007, 2:06 PM

Post #88 of 115 (3810 views)
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Re: [LateApplicant] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

See, I thought the SoP and the writing sample were supposed to be in the same document. It says, "M.F.A. applicants should include in their writing sample a two-page introduction and critique of their work." Then, the heading for the SoP Upload section says "Writing Sample (for Writing Seminars M.F.A. Only) Upload," which I again took to mean that the SoP and the Writing Sample should be in the same document.

At the same time, though, I'm pretty sure it's not a big deal either way. They will get both documents no matter how you do it. I haven't submitted anything yet myself, though. Has anyone done it as just the one document? Is there some kind of warning telling you that you haven't submitted something required?




LateApplicant


Jan 11, 2007, 7:35 PM

Post #89 of 115 (3769 views)
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Re: [cprtop77] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

I think when you run the "Check Application" feature (that thing that lets you know whether you've filled in all required entries), it'll tell you there's something missing. Actually, at first I thought that submitting the SoP and the WSample online was optional, and I wanted to send hard copies (don't ask me why!) so when I ran the Check Application feature it told me I couldn't submit the application because I hadn't uploaded the SoP or the WS. My guess is that if you put everything in one doc (either on the WS slot, or on the SoP slot), it'll tell you that the other one's missing. But whatever the outcome of this weird electronic thingie, it's no big deal provided they get all the stuff, as you sensibly pointed out...


bighark


Jan 11, 2007, 7:49 PM

Post #90 of 115 (3763 views)
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Re: [LateApplicant] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Are you supposed to bundle your stories/poetry together in one MS Word document? I'm confused--and screwed. One of my samples is a PDF of a Quark Xpress file.


podi


Jan 14, 2007, 7:49 PM

Post #91 of 115 (3710 views)
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Re: [bighark] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

bighark,
I bundled my two stories into one Word document, with a note at the top saying, "Story 1: Pages X-X" and "Story 2: Pages X-X". it seemed like you could only upload one document.

good luck,
s.


LateApplicant


Jan 14, 2007, 8:06 PM

Post #92 of 115 (3704 views)
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Re: [bighark] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Yes, just one doc, like Sergio says. I assume that by now you must be re-typing your story onto one Word doc, from the pdf file... sucks... No way to copy and paste from a pdf file, right?


bighark


Jan 14, 2007, 8:45 PM

Post #93 of 115 (3696 views)
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Re: [LateApplicant] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Believe me, typing the other story into Word would be impossible.

Fortunately, I figured out a workaround. I uploaded my PDF story to the resume section. I told the program admin what I was going to do, and made an additional note in my other story.


franz

e-mail user

Jan 25, 2007, 10:38 AM

Post #94 of 115 (3625 views)
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Re: [bighark] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Rumor has it (e.g., from Steve Dixon's mouth) that JHU is only taking two fiction students this year, to keep the number at 10. Seems crazy to me, since they took 8 last year... it would make more sense to add a few more and gradually balance things out. So I don't know if this is true or not.
The poetry department is more balanced, and I imagine there will be 5 spots there.
Fiction writers-- don't despair but keep this in mind.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


Glinda Bamboo


Jan 25, 2007, 1:22 PM

Post #95 of 115 (3584 views)
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Re: [franz] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Wow, only two? That is very disappointing. I never really liked how JHU didn't openly say how many students they'd accept this year. If I had known they were only taking two, I might not have bothered to apply.

Geez, that would mean Cornell is accepting twice as many fiction students as JHU. Insane.


BridgetB


Jan 25, 2007, 1:35 PM

Post #96 of 115 (3575 views)
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Re: [Glinda Bamboo] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Hmmm... I seem to pick the off years to apply to Hopkins-- I applied two years ago, when (I was later told) they only took two students, but not last year when they accepted eight. Sigh. Oh well, what are you going to do? One of these years maybe I'll get on the right cycle.


koleski


Mar 5, 2007, 6:13 PM

Post #97 of 115 (3450 views)
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Re: [BridgetB] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Rejected today (fiction).

"...We are able to take only four to six students in each genre and the applicants seem to us uncommonly good, making a very difficult decision..."

Thanks JHU...I'd like to go on thinking I'm "uncommonly good" despite your rejection... I thought that was a nice way to label the applicant pool.

I have a lot of respect for this program (as we all do on this thread), but I am not heartbroken for one seemingly unavoidable truth: no writers of color. That's a big deal to me...not sure how anyone else feels about race affecting voice and perspective...


piratelizzy


Mar 6, 2007, 4:17 PM

Post #98 of 115 (3386 views)
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Re: [koleski] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

When I first looked through MFA program websites last year, I remember scanning lists of the faculties for signs--any signs--of some heterogeneity. It was discouraging, to say the least.

But I do find, from time to time, that there are people who are genuinely committed to change.

I'm a writer of Hispanic and mongrel roots. It's good to "meet" you, koleski.


'sup?!


koleski


Mar 6, 2007, 5:07 PM

Post #99 of 115 (3362 views)
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Re: [piratelizzy] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Nice to meet you too, piratelizzy. I love how you put that. Anyone genuinely committed to change can be a mover and shaker, despite any vacuums of hegemony or homogeny. Pockets of people anywhere can be diversified--and not only through the lens of culture--through the music of one writer's ear, regardless of the landscape, transcribed pitch-perfect on the page. I am so looking forward to meeting some truth tellers in my M.F.A. program next year--wherever I end up...


Glinda Bamboo


Mar 6, 2007, 9:03 PM

Post #100 of 115 (3324 views)
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Re: [koleski] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Is anyone able to confirm that JHU only accepted 2 fiction writers this year? I know that's what Franz said and it has been floating around since, but I'd be curious to know for sure. My lovely rejection letter said they could only take 4-6 students per genre. I really wish JHU had been up front from the beginning about how many students they were admitting -- maybe they didn't know until the application process was well underway, but still. It feels misleading that they never indicated how many they could accept. (I applied thinking 6-8 get in.) And does this mean that next year they'll take 8 fiction writers, or will there be some new crazy number game?


Fear&Loathing


Mar 6, 2007, 9:13 PM

Post #101 of 115 (7572 views)
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Re: [koleski] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie....occasionally they take some. Not often.



franz

e-mail user

Mar 11, 2007, 10:59 PM

Post #102 of 115 (7501 views)
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Regarding the rumors and cultural diversity [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm pretty sure JHU only has two slots for fiction, and presumably five for poetry, but I can't verify that. I'm not even sure if they've made decisions on acceptances, though I'm guessing they have if people are getting letters now.
Regarding cultural diversity-- it's non-existent in the faculty. In poetry Mary Jo Salter was hired this past year but before that it was four white men. In fiction, it's all white, though it is two men and two women, and Alice McDermott alone makes this program worthwhile.
As far as student representation, two of the ten fiction students this year are woman, and one is Indian (the only non-white person in fiction), though in other years I've been told that women outnumbered men, so I think that's just the way the cards fell this year. There's also one Deaf person (me), and that's an aspect of cultural diversity as well. Two writers of color in poetry, and an even balance of men and women.
ZZ Packer and Louise Erdrich both got degrees here, so there are some big names. One thing is evident-- cultural diversity does not seem to be a factor at all in the application process. I know that the writing sample, as anywhere, is the most important thing, but I think that a good workshop benefits from a diverse range of voices. That being said, we have a great group in fiction.


Franz Knupfer, author of short stories and novels


Ron_in


Jun 7, 2008, 4:45 AM

Post #103 of 115 (7300 views)
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Re: [franz] Regarding the rumors and cultural diversity [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I'm pretty sure JHU only has two slots for fiction, and presumably five for poetry, but I can't verify that. I'm not even sure if they've made decisions on acceptances, though I'm guessing they have if people are getting letters now.
Regarding cultural diversity-- it's non-existent in the faculty. In poetry Mary Jo Salter was hired this past year but before that it was four white men. In fiction, it's all white, though it is two men and two women, and Alice McDermott alone makes this program worthwhile.
As far as student representation, two of the ten fiction students this year are woman, and one is Indian (the only non-white person in fiction), though in other years I've been told that women outnumbered men, so I think that's just the way the cards fell this year. There's also one Deaf person (me), and that's an aspect of cultural diversity as well. Two writers of color in poetry, and an even balance of men and women.
ZZ Packer and Louise Erdrich both got degrees here, so there are some big names. One thing is evident-- cultural diversity does not seem to be a factor at all in the application process. I know that the writing sample, as anywhere, is the most important thing, but I think that a good workshop benefits from a diverse range of voices. That being said, we have a great group in fiction.

Hi all,

I hope this discussion would soon turn active once again. I'm interested in applying to the Writing Seminars this year. Have started my research about relevent things online: expecially funding.

Hey Franz, -- I hope you received this and that you reply --i wanted to know how strict they are with the foreign language requirement? I'm an indian student and I know three other Indian languages (reading and writing) apart from English. Also, how open the university is to students from India? Any Indian students admitted before?


Raysen


Aug 12, 2008, 6:28 PM

Post #104 of 115 (7157 views)
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Re: [franz] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
btw, what's your state school in the midwest? I'm from Iowa City-- went to the U of Iowa. Basically another nameless state school, unless we're talking writing.


I don't consider the U of Iowa a nameless state school. Sure, it's a state school but it's Big Ten and a pretty darn good university (Too bad about all the inclement weather lately, though) with highly reputable schools in various fields (medicine, business, law, etc.).


J Treehorn


Mar 26, 2009, 4:48 PM

Post #105 of 115 (7026 views)
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Re: [Raysen] John Hopkins [In reply to] Can't Post

Any current fiction students out there? Any admits or waitlists? On the waitlist myself and trying not to get my hopes up but it seems like a great program.

I'd love to hear anything anyone can tell me about it. Particularly interested in the professors. How are they in workshop, as mentors? How sympathetic are they to experiments (not necessarily experimental fiction, just trying new stuff that may not be fully formed yet)?


(This post was edited by J Treehorn on Mar 26, 2009, 4:50 PM)


Anurag


Apr 11, 2009, 4:29 PM

Post #106 of 115 (6910 views)
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Re: [J Treehorn] John Hopkins- Stipend? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hello,

I'm applying from India this year. I had emailed them a few weeks back and I was told "the stipend is not large"; I'm applying only to universities that offer a full funding and a stipend. so I need to know if its a generous one- enough to support me.

Will my nationality affect my application - I mean are they looking for diversity?


Anurag


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Nov 1, 2009, 9:41 AM

Post #107 of 115 (6311 views)
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Re: [Anurag] John Hopkins- Stipend? [In reply to] Can't Post

According to Franz (above), "cultural diversity does not seem to be a factor at all in the application process."


Hans Landa: You'll be shot for this!
Aldo Raine: Nah, I don't think so. More like chewed out. I've been chewed out before.


Anurag


Nov 1, 2009, 10:49 AM

Post #108 of 115 (6305 views)
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Re: [ericweinstein] John Hopkins- Stipend? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the info.


Anurag


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Nov 12, 2009, 10:20 AM

Post #109 of 115 (6112 views)
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Re: [Anurag] John Hopkins- Stipend? [In reply to] Can't Post

No problem, Anurag.

I know I've asked this elsewhere, but does anyone have any experience with JHU's statement of purpose? They ask that you use it to introduce and critique your application MS, which is something of a departure from the usual fare. I've been digging around a bit through the older posts to see if there's anything, but have found nothing yet—if anyone happens to stumble across something relevant, please let me know.


Hans Landa: You'll be shot for this!
Aldo Raine: Nah, I don't think so. More like chewed out. I've been chewed out before.


jamie_mu


Nov 12, 2009, 11:39 PM

Post #110 of 115 (6064 views)
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JHU SOP [In reply to] Can't Post

The SOP for JHU is a strange beast. I would recommend showing intent in a poem/story. Just show why you chose to do something particular. In one of my poems I change the line length in one particular stanza and I mentioned in my SOP why I did that. I think it's really to show you know what you're talking about when it comes to creative writing because the senior faculty need believe you can teach from the starting line. IM me if you have questions. Professor Salter is also pretty good about answering questions or at least putting you in touch with students in the program.


Anurag


Dec 6, 2009, 2:13 PM

Post #111 of 115 (5781 views)
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Re: [jamie_mu] JHU SOP [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the info. I think different areas of my application are overlapping. Such as - the synopsis of my novel (since I am using a novel excerpt) is telling the same things as the critique. Does anybody have a suggestion?

Anurag


Anurag


Anurag


Feb 19, 2010, 10:42 AM

Post #112 of 115 (5251 views)
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Re: [Anurag] JHU SOP [In reply to] Can't Post

Hi all - is the GRE only a requirement or it affects the admission decision? Anybody heard from Johns Hopkins? I applied from India and hated the GRE. I didnt understand what was the point of that dreadful exam. I have awfully low scores and now I am wondering if i wasted application money.


Anurag


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Mar 1, 2010, 10:21 PM

Post #113 of 115 (5120 views)
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Re: [Anurag] JHU SOP [In reply to] Can't Post

I got an acceptance to JHU this evening (poetry). Has anyone else been accepted & if so, are you planning to visit in the near future? If so, PM me.


Hans Landa: You'll be shot for this!
Aldo Raine: Nah, I don't think so. More like chewed out. I've been chewed out before.


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Mar 5, 2010, 9:37 PM

Post #114 of 115 (4990 views)
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Re: [Anurag] JHU SOP [In reply to] Can't Post

Also, out of pure curiosity—did the language or GRE general requirements deter anyone from applying? I applied because I'm really looking for a good mix of scholarly/academic education as well as studio work, but I know a lot of applicants feel differently.


Hans Landa: You'll be shot for this!
Aldo Raine: Nah, I don't think so. More like chewed out. I've been chewed out before.


EnderB


Jan 10, 2011, 11:44 PM

Post #115 of 115 (2700 views)
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Re: [Glinda Bamboo] Online Application [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey, I'm having trouble with the critique portion of the JHU app. I really have no idea what to write for that. Can you offer some advice?

thanks!

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