How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

blighter
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How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby blighter » Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:48 am

Relevant information about me: An international male interested in theory

I have an awful undergraduate GPA (2.6/4). I was hoping to offset that with a great PGRE score. Let's say I prepare well for that and manage to score a 990, do I stand a chance at getting into any grad school? I have some research experience. Nothing publication worthy. Appreciate any help you can offer.

ol
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby ol » Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:35 am

Most graduate schools (not just physics departments) require a 3.0 GPA to be admitted. That said, there are a few schools whose graduate colleges do not have strict GPA requirements.

pqortic
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby pqortic » Sun Jan 29, 2012 12:06 pm

if your gpa in the upper level courses e.g. last two years is higher then you might stand a higher chance. in any case, if you score 990 that will help you a lot to get in.

blighter
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby blighter » Sun Jan 29, 2012 12:24 pm

Thank you all for the replies. From what I've seen from the applicant-profiles, I realise that it is relatively harder for an international student with similar credentials as a domestic one to get into grad school.

But this is an entirely different grading system with a ten-point scale. On an average a student from my college gets a C (6/10). Does the 3.0 cut-off apply just as rigidly to international students? IMHO they should weigh PGRE and research experience more for an international student since they are unfamiliar with the grading system. But then it's not surprising that I'd have that opinion with my screwed up GPA.


ol wrote:Most graduate schools (not just physics departments) require a 3.0 GPA to be admitted. That said, there are a few schools whose graduate colleges do not have strict GPA requirements.


A lot of grad schools don't mention any strict GPA cut-offs. But I just assume 3.0 to be an unsaid rule (is this a wrong assumption?). That's what worries me!

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holycow
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby holycow » Sun Jan 29, 2012 1:14 pm

blighter wrote:But this is an entirely different grading system with a ten-point scale. On an average a student from my college gets a C (6/10).



you should mention this in your statement of purpose. And you can request your recommender's to talk about your position in class. That would help your case. And generally I have seen for international's the admission committee's are not imposing 3.0 condition as such.

I can tell my personal experience of getting in a top 50 program with just 6/10.

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InquilineKea
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby InquilineKea » Sun Jan 29, 2012 1:33 pm

ol wrote:Most graduate schools (not just physics departments) require a 3.0 GPA to be admitted. That said, there are a few schools whose graduate colleges do not have strict GPA requirements.


What are the exceptions that you know about? The elite private schools seem to be the only exceptions I know of.

I do know that some of the state schools (Washington, Penn State, UCLA) only require a 3.0 GPA minimum in the last 2 years of study.

blighter
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby blighter » Sun Jan 29, 2012 1:49 pm

holycow wrote:
blighter wrote:But this is an entirely different grading system with a ten-point scale. On an average a student from my college gets a C (6/10).



you should mention this in your statement of purpose. And you can request your recommender's to talk about your position in class. That would help your case. And generally I have seen for international's the admission committee's are not imposing 3.0 condition as such.

I can tell my personal experience of getting in a top 50 program with just 6/10.


This definitely is a feel good factor. Really appreciate your help. You have a good profile this year. Good luck with your application.

blighter
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby blighter » Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:04 pm

InquilineKea wrote:
ol wrote:Most graduate schools (not just physics departments) require a 3.0 GPA to be admitted. That said, there are a few schools whose graduate colleges do not have strict GPA requirements.


What are the exceptions that you know about? The elite private schools seem to be the only exceptions I know of.

I do know that some of the state schools (Washington, Penn State, UCLA) only require a 3.0 GPA minimum in the last 2 years of study.


There are quite a few schools which don't specify a minimum GPA. I suspect that is just to extract the application fees though. I seriously doubt if they look through the applicants with a GPA less than 3.0.

Here are a few:
Boston University
Bryn Mawr College
Dartmouth College
Indiana University — Purdue University Indianapolis
University of Illinois At Chicago (has a 2.75 criterion)

Source: gradschoolshopper

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InquilineKea
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby InquilineKea » Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:09 pm

Interesting.

I think it goes more than that though - 3.0 GPA cutoff minimum GPAs are incredibly unfair to students in some universities that practice grade deflation (especially Caltech - where a significant fraction of students get sub-3.0 GPAs - and these are still some of the smartest students in the nation).

blighter
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby blighter » Sun Jan 29, 2012 2:25 pm

I totally agree! But since Caltech happens to be in the United States, the colleges there (everywhere in the world, rather) are still familiar with the phenomenon. So, there is a possibility they might look closer at the application. The programme I'm at gets rated #1 for undergraduate physics in India and is, by far, the most selective (1%). But still it manages to be relatively unknown to the rest of the world.

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InquilineKea
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby InquilineKea » Sun Jan 29, 2012 4:22 pm

They actually might be less aware of the phenomenon than they should be (since it's such a small school, so they don't get many actual students to convince them otherwise). I actually know extremely smart Caltech students who were rejected nearly everywhere.

With that said - yes - the situation at IIT is most likely even worse.

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grae313
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Re: How well can you offset a bad GPA with good PGRE?

Postby grae313 » Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:39 pm

blighter wrote:I totally agree! But since Caltech happens to be in the United States, the colleges there (everywhere in the world, rather) are still familiar with the phenomenon. So, there is a possibility they might look closer at the application. The programme I'm at gets rated #1 for undergraduate physics in India and is, by far, the most selective (1%). But still it manages to be relatively unknown to the rest of the world.


The IITs are not at all unknown in physics.




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