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Explaining a BAD semester in SOP


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I'm an international student and in my first semester during my master degree, I had some courses with grades like 3.0 out of 5.0 and 2.0 out of 5.0 and ended up the semester with 3.5 GPA. The following 3 semesters were almost perfect scores (expect for 2 or 3 courses). 

I had some bad experiences during that semester which affected my grades. Should I address this in my SOP?  

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  • 2 weeks later...

I think I would only address it if it had a big effect on your overall GPA. I had something similar and I didn't address it because my grades did show a nice upward trend (apart from spring 2020 when life was a mess for me because of studying abroad and Covid, but they could deduce that from my transcript/CV) and my overall GPA was still pretty good. If you are worried, you can mention the upward trend of your grades, and/or turn it into a narrative about how that time played a role in how you got to where you are now

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