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LOW GPA: What you can do

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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 08 Oct 2013, 11:37
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krr15h wrote:
I'm from India and I got 73.28% in my undergrad. That's a really good score (first class with distinction) in India but on converting it to GPA, it becomes a paltry 2.66. One Booth alum I talked to suggested that I write an additional letter explaining how 73% is a good score in India and that very few people get a GPA above 3.0 (80%) in Indian undergrad courses.

Is this a good idea? Or is it over compensating?


As I wrote the previous poster, don't convert your GPA if you aren't required to do so. The admissions committees are very good at interpreting Indian transcripts from the better known schools. A First Class with Distinction is not the same a 2.66.

At the same time, especially if your school is not well know, I agree with the Booth alum that providing context for your grade percentage is an excellent idea. Provide your class rank. Provide the information about distinction an the percentage who get it. It's better to over-compensate in this area than risk an uninformed reader who is left wondering about your abilities.

However, if you combine the info you provided above (and you attended a rigorous program) with a good test score and good progression at work, I think you will present a competitive picture of your academic qualifications. IN other words, I'm not worried about it.

You may also be interested in MBA Admissions for Indian Applicants. It doesn't directly address your GPA question, but it does address several issues that Indian applicants face.

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Linda
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 15 Oct 2013, 09:10
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acshen wrote:
You should list your class rank and a note about the conversion or your app will be thrown out.


Well as it turned out I calculated my GPA wrong .. sort of. Theoretically it is 2.66, with the formula GPA=[(percentage/20) -1]. BUT I also passed in the highest grade, "first class with distinction" (Think "summa cum laude"), and that makes my GPA 4.00 (theoretically of course :) ).

The lesson is to not convert anything into GPA. Just pass on your scores as they are and also tell the ad-com in which grade you passed. (Highest? Second Highest? Lowest?)
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 15 Oct 2013, 11:44
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acshen wrote:
You should list your class rank and a note about the conversion or your app will be thrown out.


Well as it turned out I calculated my GPA wrong .. sort of. Theoretically it is 2.66, with the formula GPA=[(percentage/20) -1]. BUT I also passed in the highest grade, "first class with distinction" (Think "summa cum laude"), and that makes my GPA 4.00 (theoretically of course :) ).

The lesson is to not convert anything into GPA. Just pass on your scores as they are and also tell the ad-com in which grade you passed. (Highest? Second Highest? Lowest?)


You and I agree on the lesson. :-)
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 15 Oct 2013, 21:52
krr15h wrote:
I'm from India and I got 73.28% in my undergrad. That's a really good score (first class with distinction) in India but on converting it to GPA, it becomes a paltry 2.66. One Booth alum I talked to suggested that I write an additional letter explaining how 73% is a good score in India and that very few people get a GPA above 3.0 (80%) in Indian undergrad courses.

Is this a good idea? Or is it over compensating?



Here are some general suggestions if you are confused whether to convert your score to a GPA:
The first step is to check whether the school(s) you are applying to require you to report a GPA. Most schools understand that grading systems differ across universities and will let you report your mark/grade as is without any conversions.

In case you do need to convert your score to a GPA, do so. In the 'additional information' essay of your application, you can mention how good a score 73% is. Rather than say that it is 'a good score in India', give specific figures such as your position in your batch/university (for e.g. top 10 percentile of the batch) that will help the AdCom understand you performance better.

Alternately, you can do this on your resume - in the academics section, alongside your degree and grade, add a line quantifying your academic performance.

Do remember that AdComs are evaluating your academic potential - will you be able to cope with the rigor of the program? As long as you can prove - through one or more of the components in the academics section of your application - that you will be able to do this, you are safe. Your GPA, GMAT score, additional certifications and undergraduate college all contribute to this. So you can make up for a shortfall in one using the others. For instance, you cannot change your GPA or your undergraduate college - but you can certainly try to get a higher GMAT score. :)

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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 17 Oct 2013, 09:55
Always check application instructions - if they don't ask you to convert, report your score in the original scale.
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 18 Dec 2013, 15:24
What would be better to take, Harvard Business Review online courses or community college courses, for Financial Accounting and math courses? The latter offers GPA and credits, but costs more.

Thanks.
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 18 Dec 2013, 22:55
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Capani1 wrote:
What would be better to take, Harvard Business Review online courses or community college courses, for Financial Accounting and math courses? The latter offers GPA and credits, but costs more.

Thanks.


If you are taking the classes to show that you know how to apply yourself academically after earning a low GPA as an undergrad and the HBR online course is not graded or offered for credit, then go with the graded, for-credit community college courses. My $.02.

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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 19 Dec 2013, 18:21
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Thank you for the response. Makes sense.
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 24 Dec 2013, 03:12
I have seen many mentions of an alternate transcript, but not much about a masters degree.

Allow me to elaborate. My undergraduate GPA is a paltry 2.88 from a regional college. This was 7 years ago, and since then I have not only built outstanding credentials (right now lead an organization of 80), but have recently earned a MS in IT Management. I graduated with a 4.0 GPA and have earned A's in MBA business statistics and microeconomics. I took these two classes specifically to bolster my MBA application.

How much weight will my graduate work have against my undergraduate academic work?
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 24 Dec 2013, 14:32
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NCK wrote:
I have seen many mentions of an alternate transcript, but not much about a masters degree.

Allow me to elaborate. My undergraduate GPA is a paltry 2.88 from a regional college. This was 7 years ago, and since then I have not only built outstanding credentials (right now lead an organization of 80), but have recently earned a MS in IT Management. I graduated with a 4.0 GPA and have earned A's in MBA business statistics and microeconomics. I took these two classes specifically to bolster my MBA application.

How much weight will my graduate work have against my undergraduate academic work?


As long as your MS is at a rigorous college, it will carry a lot of weight. It is an alternative transcript and a demanding one at that. The two A's in business related classes will also help as will your professional stature. Finally a high GMAT and context for your undergraduate performance will also help the admissions committee understand what happened then and realize that your more recent performance is a more accurate representation of what they can expect from you.

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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 25 Dec 2013, 04:06
Linda,

Thank you for your response. I don't know if I would classify my degree as "rigorous," but it was from a top-20 regional university (based off of US News Rankings). I know that's not be saying much, but it was not from a degree factory or community college either. As far as GMAT, I will take it on January 8th. My practice scores on 2 GMATPrep have been over 700, and if I don't get a 710 or higher, will re-take. I know there are many other elements to an application, but undergraduate GPA is clearly a weakness that I need to address head-on.
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 25 Dec 2013, 08:13
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NCK wrote:
Linda,

Thank you for your response. I don't know if I would classify my degree as "rigorous," but it was from a top-20 regional university (based off of US News Rankings). I know that's not be saying much, but it was not from a degree factory or community college either. As far as GMAT, I will take it on January 8th. My practice scores on 2 GMATPrep have been over 700, and if I don't get a 710 or higher, will re-take. I know there are many other elements to an application, but undergraduate GPA is clearly a weakness that I need to address head-on.


My point with "rigorous" was that it was from a real university and not from a degree mill. So check that box. :-) Good luck with the GMAT!

I think you are taking the right steps to ameliorate the impact of your undergrad GPA. The last step will be providing that context that I also mentioned.

My final point is be realistic. Yes the elite schools may overlook your low GPA given a high test score, your masters degree, and strong experience. You are making the right moves, and if you want to apply to a few in that category, do so. However, they are tough. Also apply to excellent schools that support your goals and they may not be the elite of elite.

Best,
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 27 Jan 2014, 08:48
I agree, you should also consider 2nd tier schools or safety schools (while applying to the top schools where you really want to go) and be realistic about your chances. Good luck in any case!
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 14 May 2014, 15:32
THANKS FOR SHARING
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 14 May 2014, 20:35
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 26 May 2014, 07:12
Sometimes you can repeat a course or take additional late courses in order to boost your GPA. That is if you have time of course.
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 28 May 2014, 22:05
Thanks Leo24 for your suggestion as it really helped me out.
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 24 Jun 2014, 22:06
Leo24 wrote:
Thanks for the important info! the questions is - can a high GMAT compensate for low GPA? according to this online calculator looks like it can:
http://www.aringo.com/MBA_admission_cha ... ulator.htm

Would love to hear more opinions about this - can a good explanation for the low GPA and a high GMAT be enough to overcome low GPA?


If you ask me - yes, high GMAT score can compensate for a low GPA, and eliminate the adcom's concern regarding the applicant's academic ability (or even more specifically - good quant score on GMAT can compensate for low score in quant/math course during the undergrad studies).
Would love to hear other opinions of course.
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 30 Jun 2014, 22:44
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matrix30 wrote:
Leo24 wrote:
Thanks for the important info! the questions is - can a high GMAT compensate for low GPA? according to this online calculator looks like it can:
http://www.aringo.com/MBA_admission_cha ... ulator.htm

Would love to hear more opinions about this - can a good explanation for the low GPA and a high GMAT be enough to overcome low GPA?


If you ask me - yes, high GMAT score can compensate for a low GPA, and eliminate the adcom's concern regarding the applicant's academic ability (or even more specifically - good quant score on GMAT can compensate for low score in quant/math course during the undergrad studies).
Would love to hear other opinions of course.


A high GMAT shows someone has the ability to do well in graduate business school. But ability doesn't always translate into persistence or commitment. High grades can show that you applied that ability. Low grades when combined with a high GMAT to some extent show that you have the ability but didn't use it. Depending on how low the grades were, you also need to show that you know how to apply yourself in an academic setting if the grades were really low and your target program is highly competitive. Alternatively, you need to disclose extenuating circumstances that no longer exist or affect your performance that may have hampered your performance in college.

But somehow, if your grades were significantly below a competitive school's average GPA and even if you have a high GMAT, you have to give the school confidence you will perform.

Linda

Best,
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Re: LOW GPA: What you can do [#permalink] New post 09 Jul 2014, 11:58
What about credit courses offered by Coursera in Calculas [only 5 subjects available(newly introduced)] and credit course of 'Berkely Hass Extended online' offering grades (Very costly 800$ per subject).
In case of Berkely if it is ok to join the online credit course, is it advisable to join graduate courses or certification courses or undergrad courses to prove about your competency inspite of low undergrad GPA (all offer credit and grades)?
Since I am not an US resident ,here, community college system is not prevalent.
Re: LOW GPA: What you can do   [#permalink] 09 Jul 2014, 11:58
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