BME Graduate School Admissions

  • Schools
  • Thread starter halcyon626
  • Start date
  • #1
I've seen a lot of helpful advice on this forum, and I'm at a soon-to-be crossroads as to what I do academically. For those who want the short version, skip to the end of the quote.

I'm in my senior year in electrical engineering and would like to pursue a career in biomedical engineering. Ideally, this would include research, which realistically requires a PHD.

My undergraduate GPA is a 3.1. I will be taking the GRE very soon, and am fairly confident in my ability to do well (SAT combined math/verbal was >1400, ACT was 33). I'm taking an Independent Study under a professor next semester, but undergraduate research has alluded me. I should be able to obtain.

I've talked to many advisors, and each has a different take on what to do. I don't like my chances of directly entering a graduate program with a "B" average GPA. I will do my best to attempt to raise it in my final year, but it can only change so much at this point.

After talking with my advisors, my current plan is to apply towards a Master's Degree and succeed to the point of applying (an hopefully transfering some credit) toward a PHD.

Pretty much every BME program I've looked at wants an engineering undergraduate degree (good). The institution I'm currently attending offers a BME Master's (good). My GPA is only a 3.1 (bad).

Sorry for the rambling, but I wanted to provide a little background information before my questions:
1. Is there anything I should be doing right now (other than what I am doing) to improve my chances at grad school?
2. Is it realistic, with what I've said above, that I can get into a Master's program in BME?
3. Is it realistic to apply to a PHD program with a Master's Degree, instead of applying direcly from undergrad?

I know I don't have a lot of posts, but I lurk on these forums quite a bit. I want to get something out of the way that I normally see people asking in response to these types of posts.
What makes you think you're prepared for grad school with that GPA / why do you think you would do any better in a Master's?
-I made the mistake of consistently choosing the 'hard' professors over the 'easier' ones, and my GPA suffered for it. In the classes that I've been more concientious of GPA and less on actually LEARNING the material, I've done significantly better (GPA wise). I took electrical engineering in undergraduate because every person I've talked to has said that EE is the hardest engineering undergrad degree, and I wanted the rigorous coursework. I'm in love with the problem solving side of engineering, but very passionate about biology (I spend wayyyyy to much free time learning biology because its so interesting). However I didn't care for the pure rote memorization that seemed to be emphasised in a pure biology degree. I'm very confident in my ability to do well in the biology side of engineering, given my motivation in the subjects. Its unfortunate, but in the past I have done very well (grade-wise) in classes where I neglected going more in-depth to the material and instead just 'stuck to what's on the test' but if that's what I need to do to do well in a Master's Degree, I know I can tough it out.

Short story: senior undergrad EE, 3.1 GPA, should have good GRE and letters of recommendation. Want to get PHD in BME.
1. Is there anything I should be doing right now (other than what I am doing) to improve my chances at grad school?
2. Is it realistic, with what I've said above, that I can get into a Master's program in BME?
3. Is it realistic to apply to a PHD program with a Master's Degree, instead of applying direcly from undergrad?

Thanks to everyone who reads and responds to my obnoxiously long post.
 
Last edited:

Answers and Replies

  • #2
fss
1,179
0
Short story: senior undergrad EE, 3.1 GPA, should have good GRE and letters of recommendation. Want to get PHD in BME.
1. Is there anything I should be doing right now (other than what I am doing) to improve my chances at grad school?

Obviously you should concentrate on getting good grades in your final year. Like, really concentrate. Good grades in senior-level classes will probably speak more to your ability than anything else you can do at this point.

2. Is it realistic, with what I've said above, that I can get into a Master's program in BME?

Certainly. You might not get in to your first choices, but odds are you'll get in somewhere.

3. Is it realistic to apply to a PHD program with a Master's Degree, instead of applying direcly from undergrad?

It depends on a lot of factors. A lot of places will make you take some sort of qualifying exam at the MSEE level to prove you know the material, otherwise they'll make you re-do coursework. Some won't accept your Masters' degree at all and either won't admit you or make you start as if you were fresh out of undergraduate. Like the answer to #2, you can probably get in somewhere- especially if you do well in your Masters' courses.
 

Related Threads on BME Graduate School Admissions

  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
3K
Replies
2
Views
707
Replies
1
Views
2K
Replies
1
Views
4K
Replies
3
Views
3K
Replies
2
Views
2K
Replies
1
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
6
Views
914
Replies
13
Views
4K
Top