GPA or school reputation

johnBP
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu May 09, 2013 3:56 pm

GPA or school reputation

Postby johnBP » Thu May 09, 2013 4:05 pm

Hi everyone.Currently I am in my 3rd year undergrad physics in one of top 4 Canadian universities for physics program.because of some personal issue I might have to transfer to another university in Canada with no reputation and ranked 15.I was wondering if anyone has same experience and knows the importance of the reputation of the uni you graduate from for getting admission for US universities and its importance compared to GRE and GPA .Thanks

lundyjb
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:57 pm

Re: GPA or school reputation

Postby lundyjb » Thu May 09, 2013 5:25 pm

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Last edited by lundyjb on Fri Aug 02, 2013 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

TakeruK
Posts: 814
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2012 3:05 pm

Re: GPA or school reputation

Postby TakeruK » Thu May 09, 2013 7:39 pm

Research experience is more important than school ranking, especially when you're from Canada (like me), where even our top schools are not as well known. A school ranked 15th in Canada is pretty low, but rankings in Canada are not "robust" indicators since there are so few programs! I actually don't know what the "top 4 Canadian physics programs" would be -- it seems like UBC, Toronto, and McGill are clearly the top three, but it's pretty hard to pick a 4th school and distinguish it from the others (maybe there is a difference for specific subfields of Physics but not a 4th school in general, in my opinion). However, while in Canada, I think there is a big difference between the top tier (above schools) and everyone else, on the international stage, I think this difference is much blurrier. Our programs are just less known internationally. The Americans I've met might have heard of the big 3 names, but they don't know much about the quality of each program.

I know current and former Canadian grad students at top US schools that came from all sorts of Canadian undergrad programs. It might help a tiny amount if you come from a school that the admissions committee have heard of (maybe collaborated with, had past applicants etc.). So, being from one of the 3 above named schools might help just because those are the 3 bigger schools so it's more likely that the school have seen applicants from your alma mater.

I think that physics education across Canada is pretty similar. However, you might not have as much chances to have really interesting research experiences during your summers at a smaller school (with less resources). I would strongly suggest that you apply for an NSERC USRA at one of the big schools with a strong Physics program. You might have an extra advantage when applying to a USRA at your current school because of any current contacts. Maybe you can even talk to some profs right now about working with them next summer! It could be a good idea to do this before you leave (or at least let them know your intentions so they remember you next year). USRAs are usually due in early Jan/Feb and make sure you know the application process, which could differ for each school.

johnBP
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu May 09, 2013 3:56 pm

Re: GPA or school reputation

Postby johnBP » Mon May 20, 2013 2:53 am

Thanks everyone for their help




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