I'm a sophomore majoring in math and statistics at a large state university who has top 30 math programs. I really want to go to a very good math graduate program. However, my first three semester is full of Bs, and overall GPA is 3.5. And I happened to have a C and W on my transcript. My major GPA is pretty good though, a 3.98. But I'm still afraid that first year and half is going to hurt my chance of going to graduate school really bad. What do you guys think? Do you know where I stand? Anything I can do to counterbalance my unfavorable GPA? Thanks.

  • so far I took 10 math classes, one of them is B+...they are 3/4 credits.I'm not sure how you calculate ur GPA..but for me A means 4.0 and B+ is 3.5. I added them up and divided by 10.. – XPN1122 Dec 24 '14 at 18:17
  • Panpan: Sorry, my comment was silly: I temporarily forgot about +/- grades. (But it is fairly standard that B+ is 3.3. I would be slightly surprised at a state university that takes B+ to be 3.5. You should check on that.) – Pete L. Clark Dec 24 '14 at 18:28
  • in my school we dont have A-..It's A then B+,B,C+,C,D,F...does that make sense to you? – XPN1122 Dec 25 '14 at 4:08
  • I don't understand. You say you don't have impressive grades, and then you say your GPA is 3.5. Which is it? – JeffE Dec 25 '14 at 5:14
  • possible duplicate of How do you get a bad transcript past Ph.D. admissions? – earthling Dec 25 '14 at 6:21

You major GPA of 3.98 is what counts most. "Full of B's" and overall GPA is 3.5 means "half A's, half B's," which is not at all bad. The one C and one W aren't great, but don't necessarily hurt you much. "Everyone" knows that when you take courses outside your major for "balance," you will likely get "worse" (and a few bad) grades. That's especially true the first three semesters.

I'd expect your GPA to rise to about 3.7 as you take more courses closer to your major in the later years. As long as you "finish" on a strong note, that's (mostly) what counts.

  • you're right! I'm in school of arts and sciences. And everyone is supposed to take a lot of core classes for requirement. I wouldn't have taken them if I had to. – XPN1122 Dec 24 '14 at 18:20

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