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Hey I was wondering if anyone knew of any Colleges that have a reputation for Grade deflation. I know I have heard UMich mentioned before but I am wondering if thats true.
 

LuciusVorenus

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The UC system tends to be the "average" for grades; most UC schools have an average GPA of 2.7-2.9, which is a C+ to B-, which has traditionally been known as the average grade. Any school with an average GPA over that has grade inflation and any below that has grade deflation. Just look up the average GPAs of some schools you're interested in using myedu (it's free).
 
Nov 2, 2010
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Colleges & Universities With the Toughest Grades

East

Midwest/South


  • Auburn University
  • Florida International University
  • Hampden-Sydney College
  • Purdue University
  • Roanoke College
  • Southern Polytechnic State
  • University of Houston
  • Virginia Commonwealth University
West

  • Cal State University-Fullerton
  • Harvey Mudd College
  • Reed College
  • Simon Fraser University (Canada)
source:
http://moneywatch.bnet.com/saving-money/blog/college-solution/grade-inflation-colleges-with-the-easiest-and-hardest-grades/3170/
 
Nov 2, 2010
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Some other obvious choices:

-University of Chicago
-Cornell

Though I don't know if it is so much grade deflation here as it is cut-throatness (is that a word?).

On the other hand I go to a school very much comparible with these two and it is not impossible to get a solid grade in every class. Though I did have one class where the B**** of a professor was like "only 15% of you will be getting As muhahaha"...weirdass SOB in a class of like 150. Other than that no deflation here.
 

Frazier

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Some other obvious choices:

-University of Chicago
-Cornell

Though I don't know if it is so much grade deflation here as it is cut-throatness (is that a word?).

On the other hand I go to a school very much comparible with these two and it is not impossible to get a solid grade in every class. Though I did have one class where the B**** of a professor was like "only 15% of you will be getting As muhahaha"...weirdass SOB in a class of like 150. Other than that no deflation here.
15% is good... Only 5% of students in my GenChem II class received A's.
 

nabeel76

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Colleges & Universities With the Toughest Grades

East

Midwest/South


  • Auburn University
  • Florida International University
  • Hampden-Sydney College
  • Purdue University
  • Roanoke College
  • Southern Polytechnic State
  • University of Houston
  • Virginia Commonwealth University
West

  • Cal State University-Fullerton
  • Harvey Mudd College
  • Reed College
  • Simon Fraser University (Canada)
source:
http://moneywatch.bnet.com/saving-money/blog/college-solution/grade-inflation-colleges-with-the-easiest-and-hardest-grades/3170/
Not sure how accurate that list is I know people that have transferred from VCU to both UVA and GMU and have not only had their grades drop but have also mentioned how much harder it was to get A's.
 
Jul 17, 2010
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Some other obvious choices:

-University of Chicago
-Cornell

Though I don't know if it is so much grade deflation here as it is cut-throatness (is that a word?).

On the other hand I go to a school very much comparible with these two and it is not impossible to get a solid grade in every class. Though I did have one class where the B**** of a professor was like "only 15% of you will be getting As muhahaha"...weirdass SOB in a class of like 150. Other than that no deflation here.
That's not normal? That's how my classes worked, and I was at a state school. All of our classes were pretty much graded on curves like that.
 

LuciusVorenus

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15% is good... Only 5% of students in my GenChem II class received A's.
I'd also say 15% is average/good. Every science class I have taken for a prereq has had a maximum of 15-17% As. I've never taken a class (even general eds) that gave more than 25-30%.
 

DoctorJDO

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I'd also say 15% is average/good. Every science class I have taken for a prereq has had a maximum of 15-17% As. I've never taken a class (even general eds) that gave more than 25-30%.
Agreed. I'd say 15% is about average at my school also. But some courses, like Organic Chem, have about 3 students out of 150 get As, and others like senior seminar I'd say at least 1/2 the class gets As.
 

gravitywave

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z score of +1.0 for A/A- was pretty standard in my pre-med courses at this pretty decent public school. including Organic.

Social Science major at a top ten was more forgiving, i'd say the median GPA was close to 3.4
 
Jan 6, 2011
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Colleges & Universities With the Toughest Grades

East

Midwest/South


  • Auburn University
  • Florida International University
  • Hampden-Sydney College
  • Purdue University
  • Roanoke College
  • Southern Polytechnic State
  • University of Houston
  • Virginia Commonwealth University
West

  • Cal State University-Fullerton
  • Harvey Mudd College
  • Reed College
  • Simon Fraser University (Canada)
source:
http://moneywatch.bnet.com/saving-money/blog/college-solution/grade-inflation-colleges-with-the-easiest-and-hardest-grades/3170/
Can anyone who attended BU undergrad tell me how bad it (the deflation) is, if at all? Are they out to not give As?
 

KinasePro

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Can anyone who attended BU undergrad tell me how bad it (the deflation) is, if at all? Are they out to not give As?
Did 1.5 yrs at BU before transferring to my state school, and I found the deflation to be pretty bad at BU. You can get A's, but not all profs will give them out. It's very prevalent in the basic science courses, can't say one way our another about the other departments. FWIW, a 3.7 will get you summa cum laude.

Unless youre getting a full ride, I'd advise you to avoid BU. It offers a very lukewarm undergraduate experience and isnt worth the risk of a tainted gpa.
 

flatearth22

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http://www.gradeinflation.com/ has info on different UG's. Some data is not as up to date as other data.

Remember - adcoms know about the schools that notoriously deflate grades (eg- Reed College) and ones that notoriously inflate grades (eg - Brown University) and will look at your GPA accordingly. Is it perfectly fair? Is a 3.2 at Reed really equal to a 3.7 at Brown? Probably not...but there's nothing you can do about it now. Just man up and play.
 
Feb 5, 2011
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Some other obvious choices:

-University of Chicago
-Cornell

Though I don't know if it is so much grade deflation here as it is cut-throatness (is that a word?).

On the other hand I go to a school very much comparible with these two and it is not impossible to get a solid grade in every class. Though I did have one class where the B**** of a professor was like "only 15% of you will be getting As muhahaha"...weirdass SOB in a class of like 150. Other than that no deflation here.
Cornell does not grade deflate.. if anything they do the opposite. Plus they have the option of A+'s and you can have over a 4.0 GPA.
 

flatearth22

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AMCAS does not have A+'s so that's irrelevant.

Also Cornell does grade deflate compared to similar private non-LAC's with a high achieving student body (Harvard, Yale, Brown, Stanford, etc.).
 

UnclePhil

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My university was known for grade inflation, but it was never in the science departments. I had E+M with a fellow who thought it was acceptable to give A/A-s to 5% of the class. This class had FIFTY students, the man was completely unreasonable (not to mention an awful teacher) and the dept got such awful feedback for him that they forced him to change his grading policy. Likewise, I had a few upper level classes where you needed 2 st dev above the mean to get an A. Equally unreasonable was the fact that the average was always curved to a C and a large portion of the class did not pass for no reason other than statistics. This course was also a senior level course required for graduation in that major (a C was the minimum grade for a BS degree in upper level courses). How the dept allowed this to happen was absolutely beyond me. Grade inflation my ass.
 
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Did 1.5 yrs at BU before transferring to my state school, and I found the deflation to be pretty bad at BU. You can get A's, but not all profs will give them out. It's very prevalent in the basic science courses, can't say one way our another about the other departments. FWIW, a 3.7 will get you summa cum laude.

Unless youre getting a full ride, I'd advise you to avoid BU. It offers a very lukewarm undergraduate experience and isnt worth the risk of a tainted gpa.
What percentage of kids in the pre-med classes would you say received an A and A-?
How obvious was the deflation for you?

http://www.gradeinflation.com/ has info on different UG's. Some data is not as up to date as other data.

Remember - adcoms know about the schools that notoriously deflate grades (eg- Reed College) and ones that notoriously inflate grades (eg - Brown University) and will look at your GPA accordingly. Is it perfectly fair? Is a 3.2 at Reed really equal to a 3.7 at Brown? Probably not...but there's nothing you can do about it now. Just man up and play.
From what I read on this site (particularly Suncrusher's post), adcoms don't care where you come from, at least not that much. They have to look through so many applications and use GPA and MCATs to discern the pack swiftly.
The average GPA in 2004 was a 3.04.
 

Tapepsi

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It's funny...for all of my science classes, the professors would preach how everyone had the opportunity to get an A in their class. Well with 5 people getting an A- (the highest grade) out of 85 students my junior year for physics, and only 1 person (thankfully me!) getting an A out of 50 students for o. chem (I think 3-4 got A-'s), what they say is misleading b/c the classes themselves were so ridiculous. In fact, everything that faculty in my science department did was deceptive. I remember for my gen bio II final my professor told us what would be on it which was different from what another professor in another section told his class to study for and they switched the tests! :eek: Thankfully I didn't trust my professor and studied all of the content but still...what a way to torment students... :scared:
 

PressPforPi

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What exactly qualifies as grade deflation? I mean, I've never taken a class that curves grades yet my university basically has an open door policy.
 

nadaba

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Colleges & Universities With the Toughest Grades

East

Midwest/South


  • Auburn University
  • Florida International University
  • Hampden-Sydney College
  • Purdue University
  • Roanoke College
  • Southern Polytechnic State
  • University of Houston
  • Virginia Commonwealth University
West

  • Cal State University-Fullerton
  • Harvey Mudd College
  • Reed College
  • Simon Fraser University (Canada)
source:
http://moneywatch.bnet.com/saving-money/blog/college-solution/grade-inflation-colleges-with-the-easiest-and-hardest-grades/3170/
Huh? I don't think this is true, and I admit it as a proud alumnus :D
 

gettheleadout

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Limiting the percentage of A's you will give as a professor is the most asinine I've ever encountered, TBH.
 

LuciusVorenus

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Limiting the percentage of A's you will give as a professor is the most asinine I've ever encountered, TBH.
I've never actually had a professor that limits the numbers of As really, almost all of them had said specifically that if everyone gets a solid A in the class he or she would be more than happy to give that many As. The problem is that in classes like Ochem, physics, biology, engineering, etc the averages are usually so low that it's hard to find someone who actually gets a solid A - at least where I go to school. So the professor ends up having to curve the class, and a curve only works if you set a cut off for each grade.
 

ash914

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What percentage of kids in the pre-med classes would you say received an A and A-?
How obvious was the deflation for you?



From what I read on this site (particularly Suncrusher's post), adcoms don't care where you come from, at least not that much. They have to look through so many applications and use GPA and MCATs to discern the pack swiftly.
The average GPA in 2004 was a 3.04.
I go to a big research school with a lot of premeds, and our average gpa has been around 3.1 overall over the last few years. I've spoken to adcom members when they've come to visit, and they've made it pretty clear that they're aware of the differences between schools, and they take it in account. They don't automatically add a bunch to your gpa, but they do give you more leeway, especially if your mcat is good. When schools invite for interviews, they don't just run your numbers.
 

gettheleadout

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I've never actually had a professor that limits the numbers of As really, almost all of them had said specifically that if everyone gets a solid A in the class he or she would be more than happy to give that many As. The problem is that in classes like Ochem, physics, biology, engineering, etc the averages are usually so low that it's hard to find someone who actually gets a solid A - at least where I go to school. So the professor ends up having to curve the class, and a curve only works if you set a cut off for each grade.
Oh I completely agree, if the prof is curving the class up to adjust for whatever confounding variable was present on the test (uncovered material pervading the test, incorrect questions/answers, etc...) or for the fact that every student was unprepared for whatever reason, then they are completely justified in using a normal distribution to set the cutoffs.

That said, in a course at my school last year, the professor said on day one that out of the ~200 people enrolled, THREE would get A's, and something like half would fail. (Luckily I wasn't taking this course, but I would've dropped within minutes.)

That is the product of arrogance that has no place in education, sorry "Professor."
 

Whatyousay

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Looks like public schools have a lower rate of grade inflation than private schools.

Sweet.
 
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whiteshadodw

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It's funny...for all of my science classes, the professors would preach how everyone had the opportunity to get an A in their class. Well with 5 people getting an A- (the highest grade) out of 85 students my junior year for physics, and only 1 person (thankfully me!) getting an A out of 50 students for o. chem (I think 3-4 got A-'s), what they say is misleading b/c the classes themselves were so ridiculous. In fact, everything that faculty in my science department did was deceptive. I remember for my gen bio II final my professor told us what would be on it which was different from what another professor in another section told his class to study for and they switched the tests! :eek: Thankfully I didn't trust my professor and studied all of the content but still...what a way to torment students... :scared:
reminds me of biochem. all 3 professors said not to 'memorize' certain bits of information. but i just memorized everything. lo and behold, it was always on the test.
 

KinasePro

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What percentage of kids in the pre-med classes would you say received an A and A-?
How obvious was the deflation for you?
From the NY times:

"[A recent BU transfer student] earned grade-point averages of 3.2 at Columbia, 3.5 at Northeastern and 3.8 at Pace, a range solidly in the A's and B's. Then, in his two years at Boston University, he compiled only a 2.4, the borderline between B minus and C plus. When he had to repeat some of the same business courses at Boston that he already had taken at Northeastern, part of the transfer process, his marks dropped by as much as two full grade points."

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/07/education/07education.html

I couldn't give you hard percentages, because the classes are huge. You typically notice the deflation after the fact, when you have been murdering the curve all semester but somehow end up with a B+ or A-. The common adage offered in my science courses was "We don't mind giving everyone A's or not giving out any A's, but we'll only give them out when they're deserved." I'm sure you can imagine why this doesn't work out in the students' favor very often.
 

LuciusVorenus

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Oh I completely agree, if the prof is curving the class up to adjust for whatever confounding variable was present on the test (uncovered material pervading the test, incorrect questions/answers, etc...) or for the fact that every student was unprepared for whatever reason, then they are completely justified in using a normal distribution to set the cutoffs.

That said, in a course at my school last year, the professor said on day one that out of the ~200 people enrolled, THREE would get A's, and something like half would fail. (Luckily I wasn't taking this course, but I would've dropped within minutes.)

That is the product of arrogance that has no place in education, sorry "Professor."
I had a gchem professor that told us our average was too high for a class of mostly premeds, and some of us needed to be weeded out. It was too late to drop. Grades came out and he had given 45% Ds and Fs. Ended up getting the dean involved and got the Fs/Ds changed to Ds/Cs but he spited us by keeping the As at 5%. Good times freshman year.
 
May 24, 2011
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15% A? Wow. Most of my classes had somewhere between 20-25% A. I did take one class that had something like 40% A, even still that was a difficult class to get an A in. (Quantum Mechanics)
 
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I know there's a big anti-liberal arts contingent on this website, but at most LACs a 3.3 to 3.6 is considered high. Getting 3.8 or 3.9 was almost unheard of at my school, and people with grades like that were either ultra-smart and hard working, or made obvious efforts to pad their GPA with easy classes. Bottom line was that hard working students with average intelligence had a hard time pulling As, and at the large university where I did my post-bacc, a ton of hours got the job done for most.
 

pkwraith

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Colleges & Universities With the Toughest Grades

East

Midwest/South


  • Auburn University
  • Florida International University
  • Hampden-Sydney College
  • Purdue University
  • Roanoke College
  • Southern Polytechnic State
  • University of Houston
  • Virginia Commonwealth University
West

  • Cal State University-Fullerton
  • Harvey Mudd College
  • Reed College
  • Simon Fraser University (Canada)
source:
http://moneywatch.bnet.com/saving-money/blog/college-solution/grade-inflation-colleges-with-the-easiest-and-hardest-grades/3170/
Why is Midwest grouped with South? Because midwest schools have so much in common with southern schools...
 
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reminds me of biochem. all 3 professors said not to 'memorize' certain bits of information. but i just memorized everything. lo and behold, it was always on the test.
Haha, professor told us to memorize everything but ended up giving us glycolysis and TCA on the midterm. People were so mad.

On topic, I'm at one of the eastern schools as an engineer, and yeah, it's pretty bad. Add in four language classes where only 3/15 (who were pretty much native speakers) got A/A's and my GPA is pretty sad.
 

blizzah

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Haha, professor told us to memorize everything but ended up giving us glycolysis and TCA on the midterm. People were so mad.

On topic, I'm at one of the eastern schools as an engineer, and yeah, it's pretty bad. Add in four language classes where only 3/15 (who were pretty much native speakers) got A/A's and my GPA is pretty sad.
If you don't need to memorize in intro biochem, what are you going to be tested on..?
 

nysw

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I didn't think my school would make it on a list.. In a lot of my prereq classes, only 5 out of 50-100 kids got A's. If the rest of the class failed, the professors didn't curve. I don't think this is odd though, I thought it was just how college was supposed to be.
 

gettheleadout

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I had a gchem professor that told us our average was too high for a class of mostly premeds, and some of us needed to be weeded out. It was too late to drop. Grades came out and he had given 45% Ds and Fs. Ended up getting the dean involved and got the Fs/Ds changed to Ds/Cs but he spited us by keeping the As at 5%. Good times freshman year.
That's such an insult to an institution supposedly committed to learning. Pathetic.