BAD OVERALL GPA but INCREASING GPA TREND

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SOCHBING

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Ok..here were my grades:

sem 1: 2.5
sem 2: 2.7
sem 3: 2.6
sem 4-8: 3.5

cumulative: 3.16

although my cumulative is low, will they look at the fact that my first 3 semesters were not my best but since, drastic improvements have been made?


mcat: 33M

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A 3.16 COULD WORK ESPECIALLY WITH THE INCREASE BUT WE CAN'T TELL YOU IF IT'S GOOD ENOUGH IF YOU DON'T GIVE US ANY OTHER INFORMATION. MED SCHOOLS DO LOOK AT IMPROVEMENT. GOTTA LOVE THE CAPs!
 
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i undersatnd, just wondering about the general idea of, if you did bad, and improved over time, does the improvement count strongly..
 
I'm kinda in a similar situation...some students don't do very well the first 1-2 years, and then drastically improve over the next 2-3 years..

Since some students only apply with 3 years of grades, do med schools generally look at those types of improvements with extended undergraduate education(4-5 years overall)?

The reason I'm asking is b/c, lets say your first 1-2 years GPA isn't the greatest, but then you end up making 3.5-4.0 the last 2-3 years...won't med schools generally look the strongest at the last 3 years of grades, which some students apply with overall anyways.
I'm generally confused about this situation, b/c even with a post-bac, a gpa will only increase so much with a large number of credit hours....
 
The reason I'm asking is b/c, lets say your first 1-2 years GPA isn't the greatest, but then you end up making 3.5-4.0 the last 2-3 years...won't med schools generally look the strongest at the last 3 years of grades, which some students apply with overall anyways.
I'm generally confused about this situation, b/c even with a post-bac, a gpa will only increase so much with a large number of credit hours....

exactly my situation
 
u will be FINE, see i am not always negative, omg stop sending me hate messages
 
u will be FINE, see i am not always negative, omg stop sending me hate messages

haha... you just made me laugh (which is really rare for me in the middle of this waiting process)...
do you really get "hate messages?" :oops:
 
To the OP, I'm in the same boat in terms of gpa trends and low overall...

I personally want to tell you there's hope in how they view the growth of an applicant, but that comes after they choose not to throw your application away. When asking for advice and talking to deans of admissions that visit, a crippled gpa can silence you for that cycle. There's nothing clearer.

I say redeem yourself with the MCAT then review damage control from there.
 
The gpa will present obstacles so don't underestimate that. I'm in your situation too by the way. Some of the advantages you have is that your only 21-23 right? If so you have time to build your application. It is confusing, I agree, I feel the same way, but you have options. An interesting masters, another degree, a postbac, an smp, a good research resume, amazing public service or any combination of these over the next couple of cycles. If you apply as is, given I dont even know anything else about you, you face much more difficult odds than those with stats that fall within ranges of those accepted on average as do I. You've just got to figure out what's the best strategy for you. The only thing I know for sure is that you have to keep improving your application and follow through with a continuous plan of improvement as you apply 1,2,3 or more times. If you do this and put the work in I don't see how you could not be succussful eventually....this is what I'm telling myself in any case. good luck!
 
Nasrudin, it may be to early to say so long and good night for 2008. I just wish I knew the OP's MCAT.

Frankly, the MCAT can show that trend, since most individuals take it around the time they get their act together. Frankly, if I knew that, then I'd have more details to add.

But, keep up the fight. This might be a little trite, but if this is what you want, the whole experience is just a prelude to the main event.
 
It's one thing if this upward trend was 4.0 two straight years, but 3.5?
3.5 is still lower than med school matriculant average!
 
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I think OP has done 4 years. "Sem 4-8: 3.5"
 
OP's only done 2 years. It's still very possible for them to bring it up.

Oh my mistake.
I thought it was year 1 through 4.

Yes, it's certainly possible.
Just try to get above 3.8, rather than being content with 3.5, which is hardly good compared to premed standards.
 
Ok..here were my grades:

sem 1: 2.5
sem 2: 2.7
sem 3: 2.6
sem 4-8: 3.5

cumulative: 3.16

although my cumulative is low, will they look at the fact that my first 3 semesters were not my best but since, drastic improvements have been made?

I was in the same exact situation when I started my post bacc. I had a 3.19 cumulative GPA from my previous BS degree in Chemistry. When I started my post bacc, I spoke to the premed advising office about what I needed to do to get into medical school. They told me my GPA was pretty bad for allopathic (many C's in sciences and prereqs), and nothing less than a near 4.0 in post bacc and 30+ on the MCAT would do it if I wanted a good shot. I got a 33 on the MCAT and a 4.0 in my 3 semesters and 2 summers of post bacc(65 credits).

Now, I also have 0 interviews and 2 rejections, so GPA repair may or may not work in the long run. But, you may need to do a post bacc and get all A's in upper-division coursework if this year's application cycle doesn't generate an acceptance for you. Good luck! :) :luck:
 
I was the opposite...I had a 4.0 through 74 hours and then was pullin a 3.2-3.3 the last two semesters. I decided to buckle down and go for straight As again and not worry about the past.
 
SOCHBING and HristosKaran-

Med schools love upward trends, but they don't compensate for a low GPA. A 3.16 overall with an upward trend looks much better than someone with a 3.16 overall that is consistent from year to year. But both of these are worse than a consistent 3.4 overall.

Upward trends are nice to see, but you'll want to do everything you can to raise the GPA to as close to average as possible. You can see about taking a fifth year (adding a major if the school requires) or doing a post-bac.

A 3.16 with a strong upward trend is still on the low side of the matriculant spectrum. It's definitely possible to get in somewhere with one, but it will be a very uphill battle.
 
Ok..here were my grades:

sem 1: 2.5
sem 2: 2.7
sem 3: 2.6
sem 4-8: 3.5

cumulative: 3.16

although my cumulative is low, will they look at the fact that my first 3 semesters were not my best but since, drastic improvements have been made?
Can't predict what schools and adcoms will look at. But is the jump from 2.6 to 3.5 because you started taking electives, or less courses? Cuz then it doesn't really count, because you just show that you can do well on an easier courseload.

Rather than wondering what an adcom would think, try figuring out why your grades were so bad to begin with and then fix it. If this trend continues, might want to consider an SMP/PB/grad work.
 
I had an even lower GPA from undergraduate- 2.75, the result of a couple of bad semesters (including a 1.18 one semester, and was kicked out of school, but then reinstated). I then trended way up the last couple of years (3.4-3.8), but even with this, I still graduated with a 2.75. I then did the post-bac thing, and ended up with a second degree and a GPA of 3.94. Overall cum is 3.35, and a 31 on MCAT.

With an academic dismissal on my record, and a low cum, I have still managed to get interviews at 3 schools, and am waiting on others (late mid Nov applicant). So to make a long story short, it is possible, and your numbers are higher than mine, so you may be able to avoid the post-bac thing all together. If not, take post-bacc classes and reapply. You have a shot!
 
I know that some schools have a 3.2 gpa cut off:( But if you avoid these schools, with your increasing gpa trend and your very respectable 33 MCAT, I'm sure you have a chance.

But also, how are your EC's/clinical/research experiences? If they are pretty good, then I think you've got a good chance. And if you don't get in your first year of applying, spend that extra year getting more clinical or research experience.

Apply wisely, widely, and early, and I say you'll get in somewhere. Good luck!

~Silk and Steel
 
Would that be a 3.2 cum and/or science?

Yes, with the OPs MCAT score, I would definitely try for an interview. It's not necessarily over. Like always for a high risk candidate, apply early, apply broadly and show them your strengths.

I'm looking into the possibility of a post bac myself...SDN sometimes makes you lose hope, but it might just be on accident.
 
Well this is a very encouraging thread....My first two years consisted of 2.6, 2.3. 2.6, 3.0..but then my last 5 semesters have been 3.5, 3.8, 3.8, 4.0, 3.8...my overall right now is about 3.3 and with my grades next semester it will def. be around 3.35 (gpa won't move really due to credit hours). Started out Psych major, so my C's are in courses such as Social psych, music appreciation (8 am course, never went), and freshman seminar lol. I have never made anything lower than a B in my science courses, so I added a BA in biology and stayed a 5th year for that reason. I made an A in organic II :D , and a high B in organic I. A's in the labs. I'm taking it semi easy next semester to study for the MCAT and dominate that. I've been volunteering in the ED in a very prominant hospital for a while now, TA'd organic I lab b/c the teacher thought I was a great student, and have 1.5 years of organic chem research with 1 small publication, and another coming out. (Not sure exactly what author I'm under b/c my prof wanted to write it since he is new to the school...either 2nd or 3rd). Also volunteered in a psych lab for a semester doing EKG work.

Oh yeah, the reason I got a 2.3 was b/c I made a D in stat's...but I took biostats and made an A...the teacher was so impressed he offered to write me a letter of recomm. for med school at the end of the semester, which I thought was cool. My overall science gpa is around a 3.6. All Med school Pre-reqs' have been A's, with a couple B's.

The reason I did so poorly, gonna sound stupid, is b/c I only went on test days, made friends and just went out and had fun, did 0 studying. I got a kick in the butt in my sophmore year once I REALLY looked at my gpa, moved out, and just have been working extremely hard ever since...

I don't feel like my first 3-4 semester defines me at all b/c I had a 3.5-3.6 cum. in high school. I really didn't feel like I was in college, until I STARTED taking science courses...which was in my sophmore/junior year. Psych courses in the beginning did null to motivate me...But I hope with this strong upward trend, a knockout in the mcat, and a 4.0 next semester..I should be fine. Also since I've been making good grades, i've upped my course load to 16-18 credit hours instead of 13-15...so it shows I can handle a larger course load. The semester I made straight A's I had Orgo 2, Physics 2, Bio 2, and the labs, plus research hours.

I'm not really sure why I'm writing all this, just felt like it lol.
 
Hristos...

I know exactly where you're coming from about being burdened with a period of your academic life that truly doesn't define your capabilities. The problem is there's just so many thousands of apps that once you wander off the beaten path its hard to find a way back to the table. I agree with Four as well that this forum can maKe feal doubtful but, on the other hand, its extremely expensive applying to the number of medical school we're going to have to apply to and so putting a good application together on your first try is important i feel. I tend to play conservative when there's alot on the line though so for all of you out there who just go for it with the low gpa...best of luck and keep us up with your success as a source of inspiration.
 
the 3.2 is my cumulative, my science gpa cum is a 3.54
 
I was a pretty extreme case of the upward trend thing during my application season last year. I finished my freshman year of college with a GPA between 0 and 1, can't recall exactly. Basically, I failed a few classes my first semester and then all courses the second semester. After that I got serious, made 3.9-4.0 the rest of my college days and ended with about a 3.2. My MCAT was ~94th percentile and extracurriculars were average at best. I ended up getting into every school I applied to. My point... if upward trends were not looked at, I would not be in med school.
 
I was a pretty extreme case of the upward trend thing during my application season last year. I finished my freshman year of college with a GPA between 0 and 1, can't recall exactly. Basically, I failed a few classes my first semester and then all courses the second semester. After that I got serious, made 3.9-4.0 the rest of my college days and ended with about a 3.2. My MCAT was ~94th percentile and extracurriculars were average at best. I ended up getting into every school I applied to. My point... if upward trends were not looked at, I would not be in med school.

You're an inspiration to all.
 
I finished with a 3.167 my freshmen year of college (I wasn't even considering premed or any science then, just teaching music.)

My second semester wasn't much better with a 3.360 or something like that.

The semester I decided I wanted to be a premed I pushed myself a lot harder and finished with a 3.611. Bringing my overall to a 3.408, which isn't bad but not as high as I wanted it to be.

I'm basically in the same boat as you though, and what makes it worse is my school doesn't give +'s or -'s on grades. So an A is a 4.0, a B is a 3.0, a C is a 2.0 and so on. It's great when you have a 90 in something, but getting an 89 kills me.

Anyway..good luck!
 
Taken the MCAT? extracurriculars? Based on that GPA, it could be extremely hard for you to get in.

im not so much as asking if i will get in. just curious if this is a huge disadvantage, but i guess its hard to really answer without seeing the rest of my application.
 
im not so much as asking if i will get in. just curious if this is a huge disadvantage, but i guess its hard to really answer without seeing the rest of my application.

I mean let's be realistic.
Of course it's a huge disadvantage.

That doesn't mean you have no chance, but you'd have to be crazy to believe that you're not at a disadvantage compared to someone with a 3.5 overall, even if they had a slight downward trend.
 
im not so much as asking if i will get in. just curious if this is a huge disadvantage, but i guess its hard to really answer without seeing the rest of my application.


The shortest answer regardless of the rest of your application is its a big disadvantage. That's a matter of common sense. Try posing the question on the adcom thread stickied at the top of this forum for a more specific perspective.
 
I was a pretty extreme case of the upward trend thing during my application season last year. I finished my freshman year of college with a GPA between 0 and 1, can't recall exactly. Basically, I failed a few classes my first semester and then all courses the second semester. After that I got serious, made 3.9-4.0 the rest of my college days and ended with about a 3.2. My MCAT was ~94th percentile and extracurriculars were average at best. I ended up getting into every school I applied to. My point... if upward trends were not looked at, I would not be in med school.

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:
 
I finished with a 3.167 my freshmen year of college (I wasn't even considering premed or any science then, just teaching music.)

My second semester wasn't much better with a 3.360 or something like that.

The semester I decided I wanted to be a premed I pushed myself a lot harder and finished with a 3.611. Bringing my overall to a 3.408, which isn't bad but not as high as I wanted it to be.

I'm basically in the same boat as you though, and what makes it worse is my school doesn't give +'s or -'s on grades. So an A is a 4.0, a B is a 3.0, a C is a 2.0 and so on. It's great when you have a 90 in something, but getting an 89 kills me.

Anyway..good luck!


Yep, same here (UT). It's pretty messed up, since finals can shut down a semester's worth of work if you bomb it. Many finals here are work upwards to 45-50% of the course grade. And yes, a 89.4 = 3.0 gpa credit.

But, those are excuses, so it's better not to dwell on it.
 
So far I'm in a similiar situation. It took me a long time to repair my gpa and get over a 3.0, but the harder my courses get the better the grades I receive. I have a 3.16 now, and have had above a 3.6 the last two years, with a 3.93 this semster.
 
i transfered to ucla from a JC with a gpa of 3.2, i have no idea how i got in. but at ucla my last 2 years i got 3.75. my amcas gpa was 3.45 overall. my mcat is 35M, and i just got into ucsf. like the previous people have said, apply early and broadly. the whole process seems pretty random.

heres my mdapps
http://mdapplicants.com/viewprofile.php?myid=5871
 
or else i am SOL : )

my first semester of frosh year i had to drop all of my classes due to some ridiculous family stuff - past the drop date : ( ouch did that hurt. five big old f's on my transcript. believe it or not, multiple semesters of 3.5-3.8-4.0 have brought me up to about 3.2 cumulative, including those f's. if that semester was ignored, i would be golden : ) but since i know it can't be, i have to hope they look at the upward trend and my other app stuff.

good luck to us!!
i am applying next cycle.
 
or else i am SOL : )

my first semester of frosh year i had to drop all of my classes due to some ridiculous family stuff - past the drop date : ( ouch did that hurt. five big old f's on my transcript. believe it or not, multiple semesters of 3.5-3.8-4.0 have brought me up to about 3.2 cumulative, including those f's. if that semester was ignored, i would be golden : ) but since i know it can't be, i have to hope they look at the upward trend and my other app stuff.

good luck to us!!
i am applying next cycle.


Couldn't you have just dropped the courses and got W's?
 
I am in the exact same boat. I moved away for college at 16 and was completely unprepared

Sem #1: 2.49
Sem #2: 2.93
Summer (1st yr): 2.67
Sem #3: 2.21
Sem #4: 3.87
Summer(2nd yr): 4.0 (12 hrs)
Sem #5: 3.59

My Cum right now is 3.16 also and when I apply it will be around a 3.25. I had trouble with the "core" classes but have excelled in the science/math courses. I just hope that they do not hold my bad 1st year against me. I have tons of ECs also so hopefully that helps. I will be applying next cycle
 
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