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How much does improvement in GPA compensate for initially low GPA?

  1. Nov 18, 2011 #1
    I'm applying to grad school wanting to do experimental high-energy physics. My first semester of college, I got a 3.0. Keep in mind at this point, I wasn't taking any physics. I've started getting better grades as my study skills have improved and as I've started taking more physics and math classes (which I've done better at than general-education stuff), and last semester (my sixth--and the first in which I've taken strictly physics and math), I made a 3.8. That said, the improvement up to this point has been pretty gradual, so my overall GPA is still 3.5 with 3.6 in physics and 3.6 in math. To an admissions committee, to what extent do I look like a 3.8-GPA student, and to what extent do I look like a 3.5?
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 18, 2011 #2
    it's fine. those grades are pretty great in the grand scheme of things. it's not like you have a 2.4 or whatever. you're capable of doing well with the material, and finished strong, so now work on your standardized test scores and the rest of your application.
  4. Nov 19, 2011 #3
    Thanks for the advice--I've just taken the Physics GRE last weekend, so now I'll be focusing on actually filling out applications/personal statements and such.
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