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Probably depends on the committee and maybe each member of the committee. Could also depend on what each program is looking for each year. And because applicants are generally evaluated holistically, they might scrutinize each transcript differently depending on the rest of your application. For example, a committee may not examine a transcript very carefully if the applicant has an excellent research record and they already have enough information to make a decision. Or, when they are down to the wire between two applicants and they need to accept one and wait-list the other, they might go back and compare minor details side-by-side. 

Some things the committee may look for:

- Overall GPA
- GPA in your major
- GPA in upper level courses 
- Trend in GPA over time
- What courses did you take (i.e. do you have the right pre-reqs?)
- Did you make choices in your coursework that is consistent with what you say your interests are?

The last two depends on your school as well. For example, if you are at a SLAC for undergrad that didn't offer a large number of courses in X, the committee isn't going to ding you for having fewer X courses than other applicants. Maybe the 4 upper level courses in X on your transcript are the only 4 upper level X courses offered across the whole school! On the other hand, if you went to an undergrad school with a well known expertise in X, and you say you want to go to grad school to study X, but your transcript shows that you didn't show any interest in courses on X, then that would be a little weird, right? 

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