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Should I apply to graduate school?


saramo123

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So I want to hear if anyone is in a similar situation as I am.

 

I am currently a computer science (B.S) major in a big flagship state school in the east coast. I'm graduating in a year and plan to apply to graduate school (M.CS or M.S) for either the spring 2016 or fall 2016 semesters. My situation however is a little different. Almost every graduate program requires a 3.0 GPA in all undergraduate coursework. I went to college A for 3 years before I transferred to my current school. About 80% of the coursework I took at college A was mostly general education courses (psychology, sociology, English, etc...) and the rest were first year calculus and science courses. I went to a very bad high school in nyc and was not at all prepared for the academic rigor of college when I started and ended up with a 2.5 GPA from that school. However, after I transferred and started my CS education, I did comparatively much better and I will be graduating with no less than a 3.2 GPA (almost all CS courses) from my current school. 

 

Now this is where my confusion lies, since graduate schools evaluate transcripts and GPA's from every school you have attended and average them (so I have heard), my GPA will be in the range of 2.8-2.9 which will not qualify me for majority of graduate programs I want to apply to.

 

Should I still apply?

 

Some things I have heard from people regarding my situation: 

1. People have gotten in with GPA's < 3.0, either because of work experience or their Technical GPA was high.

2. Grad admissions mostly care about your grades in major related courses...

3. You can ace the GRE, write a strong SOP and get good LOR's and it just might work..

 

What do you guys think? anyone in or was in a similar situation? any comments, insights,.. anything will be appreciated!

 

Also, the graduate schools I plan to apply to are...

1. UC-Davis

2. Ohio State

3. USC

4. University of Arizona

5. Virginia Tech

6. UC SB

 

Currently my mock GRE's have resulted in 310-315. I still have 6 more months of preparation before I actually take the exam. 

Any feedback?

 

 

 

 

 

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I would say that continuing your GRE prep and getting comfortable with the format and taking some practice exams would help you achieve a high score. If you have time I would strongly suggest that you take on some sort of research or project work before applying. This sort of prep coupled with a continued upward trend in your grades in CS classes would help you get some strong letters of recommendation. If you have the chance, doing internship work in CS would also be very helpful. You can address why you hadn't performed as well in college A in your SOP but honestly I do believe you have a fighting chance at most of the schools you listed as long as you get some research/project/internship experience, do well on your GRE, write a strong SOP and get strong LORs. Also you may want to start drafting your SOP early and consult professors that specialize in the area you want to get into during your graduate studies. Anyhow hope that helps and good luck.

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