phsicsdudeusa wrote:They will roughly convert your percent to USA GPA, which is honestly inappropriate. I came from the UK, achieving a 1st class honors at a major university to getting roughly a 4.0 in my studies in the USA. They converted my grades in the way I mentioned above, even though a 1st class honors is NOT THE SAME as a 4.0 gpa. The 4.0 means you understand your subject pretty well, a 1st class honors means you think independently about your subject. The difference between a 1st class honors student and an average 4.0 student is vast, the 1st class honors student thinks in a more sophisticated manner. However, you have to live with what they give you.
There are large variations between USA schools in what GPA even means. At some places, a "A" grade really does mean you have to think in a more sophisticated manner because a 4.0 is the maximum possible grade. At other places, there is an "A+" grade means what you say here. Some schools will have variations within the same department (some professors will never award A+, some will, and some will only award one single A+ no matter what). Also, some US schools have a 4.0 GPA system where both A and A+ counts as 4.0 (i.e. no way to tell the two apart) and others will award 4.3 for an A+. For those in the latter case, sometimes the GPA is given out of 4.0 (so straight A+, would somehow be a GPA greater than 4.0) and others it's given out of 4.3. The point is that there is a lot of variations.
In addition, reiterating what I said just above, because the variations are so large, and the small differences in understanding is actually not that important, this is why I don't think the difference between 3.8, 4.0, 4.2 (if that's even possible for that particular school) is very important. They are going to be using other parts of your application to determine your overall profile for grad school. Also, they can understand your ability to think independently from your letters, from your statement of purpose, and from your past achievements.