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Reduced course load semesters in Undergraduate - Any chance for Top Grad School?


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Hi Everyone,

I would highly appreciate it if anyone can give me an idea of how graduate schools view consistently reduced course load semesters. I have taken 4 years of reduced course loads anywhere from 4 units to 12 units. Due to a low course load, I have a 3.9+ GPA and have multiple research experiences. I also did an internship at a top investment bank. My school is considered to one of the top undergraduate schools for going onto graduate school. My major is a field within mathematics. This semester, I anticipate withdrawing due to family difficulties. My GRE quant is 800 and english is 770. Assuming I take a full course load during my last semester (5th year), would top schools look down on my lack of classes and withdraws?

Any info would be appreciated, I ended up posting this here as I a responder on the other threads suggested I post here.

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Are you applying to math programs for grad school? Without knowing more about your situation, I would say that your story would raise red flags with admissions committees. If you can explain whatever made you slow down as a thing of the past which you have overcome that's one thing, but it sounds like whatever the problem is, it's not resolved yet. If that is the case, then grad programs will be very reluctant to invest in you. You are likely to take the support (fellowship, advising, space in your cohort, other resources) and not make as much of it as other students, perhaps even throw it all away at the end because you won't be able to complete the degree requirements. It's something admissions committees will be looking out for and will not appreciate in your application.

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