I'm an engineering graduate from Nepal and I'm currently re-studying various concepts that were taught in college in good depth. I'm putting them in my github. Not because they'll help me for something in future, but because I regret not keeping my notes that I made safely and I want to put them safely now. I'm printing them out as well as putting them in github, double backup.

I was brainstorming if showing this portfolio to prospective colleges would be of any help? It's like having a blog but I don't intend to generate any money. My main motive is one I already said above, other is to have others collaborate and point out flaws in my understanding.

Currently, I am working as systems administrator.

I'm asking this if this is worth showing for or not. For graduate admissions? I've really low gpa (70%, A good gpa in engineering is 80%), and I'm looking for ways to overcompensate it. I've not found anything yet.

  • 1
    You need to be careful about copyright.
    – Buffy
    Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 14:45
  • Can you elaborate? I didn't get it. Copyright from whose pov? Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 14:50
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    You can put your own notes, since you own copyright, but putting up the professor's notes and handouts and such can be a problem. You can't republish the work of others, especially if doing so reduces the value of it, such as can be the case with exercise solutions and such.
    – Buffy
    Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 14:52
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    If you want them usable by others, it would be good to state an explicit license.
    – Buffy
    Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 15:02
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    While the exercise of placing your notes on Github might help you keep things organized, I would not hold out much hope of either anyone else reviewing your notes and pointing out flaws, or of any grad school admissions folks going through it to evaluate it.
    – Jon Custer
    Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 16:17

1 Answer 1


Generally, the organized form of knowledge that people learn from are books. Textbooks in particular are typically written by experts in a given field and a good textbook writer puts a lot of effort and knowledge into one, often over years or decades of teaching related courses where they encounter the specific difficulties that students face.

So, I guess I'd question a bit the value others would get out of your notes. Wouldn't they be better off starting from a textbook? You may have gotten benefit from making the notes as this activity tends to help solidify knowledge and force you to confront gaps in understanding, but someone else doesn't get the same benefit from just being handed your notes.

I don't think there's really a harm in making them public as long as you're not including copyrighted material and aren't doing things that instructors might find dodgy like posting solutions to problems found in textbooks. I'm not really seeing how your notes will compensate for a low GPA at all, though: they're mostly just evidence you've taken some courses, your grades in those courses seem like better evidence to me. And, I can't imagine people taking the time to edit your notes for you and act as volunteer tutors.

Stack Exchange is probably a better format to ask questions to improve your understanding; it still won't be a way to substitute for a poor GPA but learning to formulate your questions in a useful way for Stack Exchange will help create a library of knowledge here, just make sure you're posting on the right site and following the guidelines on that site for asking good questions.

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    What can really compensate a low gpa except research experience? Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 15:27
  • btw, I extensively use stackexchange to solidify my understanding already. I am talking about the pov of proving myself that I'm a dedicated student to prospective college w/o a great gpa. Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 15:28
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    @knamerakhau For graduate admissions? Research experience is probably more important than GPA (varies by field and country), but GPA may be necessary to get through the initial "filter". The best way to show you're a dedicated student would have been to be successful as a student as demonstrated by your grades. If you put all that effort in and still didn't understand, I don't think there's really a way around that: if there are limited places in graduate school, they may go to people who performed better in their classes. There isn't really a magic button or formula to skip ahead.
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 15:38
  • Due to some reaons, I could not put effort while in college. Why do you assume so negative of me. SMH Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 15:47
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    @knamerakhau I'm not assuming anything negative about you, I'm just trying to be realistic. If you're involved in a competitive admissions process, you'll be competing with people who performed better and could put in effort while in college. That's not really fair to you, of course, but it also wouldn't be fair to them otherwise.
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Oct 2, 2023 at 15:48

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