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I would like to apply to a graduate school with a strong department in Electrical Engineering, but my GPA isn't very high, around 3.5. From the statistics and forums I've browsed online, the average GPA for an application into somewhere like MIT/Stanford (which I'd like to apply) is around a 3.9

This is disheartening, but I am wondering if the undergraduate institution is taken into account. I currently am attending a top 30 university, so most likely (although I have no outside university experience) the curriculum is more rigorous. Is my low GPA not that low?

  • Also see How do graduate schools evaluate GPA? – ff524 Dec 4 '16 at 6:57
  • From my own experience, the majority of students who make it to the top graduate programs come from top 30 schools (because there are plenty of students with 3.9+ GPA from a rigorous curriculum). So I'd say that you're not competitive. The only things that can offset your low GPA are great letters, outstanding research experience, etc. – Sana Dec 4 '16 at 14:52
  • Does a co-authorship count as "outstanding research experience"? – StackOverflowOfficial Dec 4 '16 at 18:45