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Good GPA or double major?

  1. Apr 30, 2005 #1

    Pengwuino

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    Ok so I have something to consider. I have enough units and will ahve enough units through summer class to be able to graduate in just a total of 3 years with a bs in physics but i figure thats not going to look that great to berkeley or caltech with a not so good GPA so i have 2 options. Should i stretch it to the normal 4 years and take easy classes as fillers to boost my GPA or should i stretch it to 4 years and attempt to get a BA in math too (not not a minor, the degree)?

    Also, if im unable to finish the math degree by graduation, can i still continue it if i attend the same school for my masters in physics (with plans on later attending those better colleges for my phd)?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 1, 2005 #2
    1) Get good grades in physics

    2) Get good grades in math and get the Math degree.

    I understand keeping your grades up is hard, but you really have to push it, your future depends on this. :p
     
  4. May 1, 2005 #3

    Pengwuino

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    Are you presenting me with 2 options or shold i do both lol.

    The thing is, im pretty sure i would be able to get better GPA and better grades in physics classes if i stuck with physics only for 4 years then i would overall if i tried for both degrees in that 4 year period.
     
  5. May 1, 2005 #4
    Like retaking physics classes to get better grades? Screw it. Take the math degree and do well in it. If you're going to spend another year doing something, it might as well be learning something knew instead of repeating stuff you know for no real reason.

    PL
     
  6. May 1, 2005 #5

    Pengwuino

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    No, i wouldnt get grades bad enough to allow for grade changing (D's and F's). I was thinken maybe in all my phsyics classes i would get a 3.0 if i went for the math major and maybe 3.5 if i didnt.

    What i want to know is whats better, a say, 3.0 GPA overall and the 2 degrees (masters in physics and ba in math) or a 3.5 GPA and just the masters in physics. These GE classes are just beating me down for some reason (even though there so easy! which pisses me off even more)
     
  7. May 1, 2005 #6
    I dunno then. Knowing the extra math would be a plus in physics, but having lower grades would be bad...

    PL
     
  8. May 1, 2005 #7

    Pengwuino

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    Yah but what would berkeley or caltech think when it comes to admitting me.
     
  9. May 1, 2005 #8
    I don't know. I am not Berkely or Caltech. Since people here have said the amount of time it takes to you get your degree(s) is irrelevent, then they will say "he has two degrees, but he's so-so at both".

    PL
     
  10. May 1, 2005 #9

    Pengwuino

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    Yah thats how i think it'll be. Its going to be "hmm, so so with 2 degrees" or "wow hes really good with physics". I feel iffy about emailing someone at both universities because i think last time i asked a question like that, i pretty much got a useless answer from them.
     
  11. May 1, 2005 #10
    INAAE (I'm Not An Admissions Expert),

    but isn't a 3.5 (even in sciences) low for graduate studies at Caltech?

    You will some -really- excellent recommendation letters and even an undergraduate research project under your belt.

    At least, thats what I'd think for somewhere like Caltech...
     
  12. May 1, 2005 #11

    shmoe

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    It shouldn't be about gpa, it should be about learning what interests you. That's idealistic, but keep it in mind. I have nothing to do with admissions either but if I had to choose between two candidates:

    1)Has A/B average in physics classes and A's in irrelevant filler courses giving an A average.

    2)Has A/B average in physics classes and B's in a math major (or even minor) course requirements giving a B average.

    I'd take 2) everytime. Easy filler classes aren't likely to impress anyone, an A in underwater basic weaving does not mean you're suddenly better at physics since your gpa is higher. In the US, don't you have to send your entire transcripts (or at least the last two years) so they'll see any junk you've taken?
     
  13. May 1, 2005 #12

    Hurkyl

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    Another advantage to consider is that if you double major, you'll have two departments from which you could solicit recommendations!
     
  14. May 1, 2005 #13
    make sure you make the cut off grade...have decent projects underyour belt...and good recommendations...if y0ou can guarantee that then i'd gof ro the double major....added bonus if you can code in C/C++
     
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