My GRE score is only 790 (77 percentile). I am an international student applying for PhD in applied mathematics at Tier 1 schools in the U.S. I am from the top university in my country and have a strong academic record and good recommendations. I have communicated with some faculty at some of these universities and they have expressed interest in my profile.

I am worried that my application would get filtered out just because of the GRE score. So I was wondering if I should send this score at all?

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    Closely related: academia.stackexchange.com/questions/21031/… – Mark Meckes Nov 30 '17 at 15:34
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    I am not an international student but I am at a top 5 school for Applied Math right now and I didn't submit a subject test score at all. My sense is that the subject score can be helpful if you're from a school the admissions committee isn't familiar with – user1799323 Nov 30 '17 at 16:00
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    @user1799323 Which university are you in, if you don't mind sharing? Also, was GRE subject score a requirement in the application, or just highly recommended? – user75914 Nov 30 '17 at 16:40
  • 77th percentile isn't low. – user37208 Nov 30 '17 at 18:44
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    @Matt This is Brown's applied math division. The website says it's highly recommended and not submitting a score would make determining admission "very difficult," which is what I found a lot of applied math departments say on their websites – user1799323 Nov 30 '17 at 21:37

Many US universities are going to ask for the GRE results. You probably won't be able to avoid having to send them. Also, many schools pull the GRE data from ETS the testing service that administers the GRE. That means even if you take the GRE a second time all of your GRE exams will likely be received by the university. That is not meant to discourage you. The program's admissions committee has final say on the matter and they look at other factors too. If you are not good at exams, but good at applied work highlight that in your review process. Good luck!!!

  • Ok, in that case, do you think my gre score would be a red flag. I was wondering if I should apply to the top schools at all. – user75914 Nov 30 '17 at 16:40
  • My best guess would be no. Here is my reasoning. My undergrad work was awful. Very awful. I also stink at standardized tests. However, I have a reasonable amount of intelligence and many years ago when I saw my career stagnating, I decided I needed to get an advanced degree. I took the GRE's twice scored very mediocre. However, I started taking non-degree-seeking grad classes and did very well in them. I started meeting faculty members and getting to know people. That all eventually paid off. 2 MS degrees and PhD from a teir 1. So, yes, you can do it!!!! – drsnark Nov 30 '17 at 20:10
  • I may have been wrong about the ETS scores following you. I found another question on this site related to your question. academia.stackexchange.com/questions/58200/… – drsnark Nov 30 '17 at 20:19
  • Thank you! That is encouraging to hear. I think my best strategy would be to include some "lower" universities for safety as well. – user75914 Dec 1 '17 at 5:47

Just retake your GRE as quickly as you can. ETS allows you to choose which score you are sending. If you obtain a higher result and choose it to be sent, the previous lower score will not be visible to the institution you are applying to.