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I have a GPA of 6.8/10 from IIT. It is not a terrible terrible GPA but it is a little on the lower side. I do have a few D's and E's which is definitely not going to help my case any. So...should I explain my low GPA? I do have pretty strong extra curriculars and was also on the student union. I worked Part time for the last two years as well. Also have a better grad GPA and have some publications as well.
Chaggi(for all non-IITians, its a slang for 6 pointer) .....(no offense buddy)
I had a 6 in one of the 10 semesters and I did explain it in the optional essay.
I personally feel that you should address it - if you are able to provide a valid reason for the performance that is.
I wrote an optional essay (same for all schools) explaining a few weaker semesters. I got a some Cs and a D I believe, it hurt that two were in math classes but then I buckled down and excelled for the rest of my time, 3.7 for last two years.
i voted no. 6 doesnt seem that bad to me, although im not that familiar with grading in india. i feel like i see a lot of 7/10's posted from iits, so 6 seems ok. and from what you posted it doesnt sound like an extraordinary situation caused you to have a bad gpa... EC's and working part time seem pretty normal to me.
I also voted no. Like dabots, I'm not very familiar with the grading system. Could someone perhaps explain it a bit more?
Though my circumstances were no doubt different (I was applying to NYU PT), I also considered addressing my less-than-stellar GPA (3.1 from an average school) in my optional essay. I also did not have a great GMAT so I thought academics may be an issue. Eventually, as the deadline got close, I decided against addressing these perceived shortcomings in the last essay. I felt that highlighting a negative attribute in my profile as perhaps one of the last things the AdCom read could not possibly help. I had no compelling reasons for my GPA issues though I did show improvement as I got older.
I used the optional essay to stress the positives in my profile (W/E & extra-cirrics) and reinforce my interest in the program...almost like a cover letter of sorts. It worked for me; I was accepted last month.
I had a 3.4 and used the essay to explain away a few bad grades. I think the overall GPA is important to a point...but they aren't going to care if you got a C in an elective class on pottery. However if you ace those to drive your GPA but get a D in calc then that probably needs to be explained. Dont picture the GPA as a whole. Look at your transcript for trends that need to be explained or weaknesses in a quant heavy area or english for international students.