Acceptance Estimator

for Computer Science Graduate Admissions

About This Site

Motivation: The process by which potential CS grad students and grad schools come together is error-prone and time-consuming (CACM essay), for the applicants, for the people who write letters of recommendation, and for the admissions committee. I personally have sent applications to seven graduate schools, have written dozens of letters of recommendation, and have participated in admissions decisions at three schools (Berkeley, Tokyo, and UT El Paso).

This page is my attempt to make the process a little bit more efficient. In particular, informing potential students about how applications are evaluated may enable them to better target their efforts.

Model: The score for each applicant is in essence a linear weighted sum of a numbers representing the major factors in the admissions decision. The only fancy features of the model are that the weights depend on the informativeness of each factor and on the applicant's relative strength on each factor. The key points of the model are presented in a journal article (here) with more details in a Technical Report, UTEP-CS-04-30 (pdf).

Match to Reality: This model is intended to predict admissions outcomes, but large-scale verification has not been done. It is certainly not a model of admissions committees' decision-making processes.

Version Information: This site is running Model Version 2.0 (March 6, 2012), Parameter Set Version 2.0 (March 6, 2012), Interface Version 3.0 (November 3, 2014), and Department Data Version 16 (Nov 11, 2021).

Acknowledgements: I thank Luc Longpre, Vladik Kreinovich, David Novick, Salamah I. Salamah, Al Martinez, Rachel Pottinger, Karen Ward, Chitta Baral, Justin McManus, the UT El Paso graduate admissions committee, the CS 4390 Summer 2004 Usability class, the CS 5317 Fall 2004 HCI class, and all those who have sent me bug reports, comments and suggestions.

Bugs: Major bugs: none known. Minor bugs: display of schools is recomputed and thus re-rotated if returned to via back button.

Change Log: here

Invitation: Comments, suggestions, and contributions of data are welcome. Send mail to nigelward @ acm . org.

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