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    Kevin, I can understand that in your situation you might be offended by poohat's comments, but in all honesty he really is accurately presenting the situation you'll find in the UK. It's better to know what you're up against.

    (Original post by kevin1297)
    I have other things going for me besides my academics, which by the way, at a top 40 liberal arts college like Occidental is much more difficult than the average university in the U.S., such as good LORs, work experience and extracurriculars.
    Unfortunately these won't be of much use for an application to LSE or Oxbridge. The reason people keep talking about your GPA, is because this really is the critical factor.

    I am confident than I can raise my GPA.
    That's great, but in your post above you couldn't think how you were going to do this. Your plan to talk to your teaching staff is definitely the way forward.

    To say that I should "get over it" is naive, offensive and just plain wrong.
    I'm sure that poohat didn't mean that in the sense of your wider life. But certainly in the narrow single issue of getting into LSE or Oxbridge, you need to move past your issues. They won't be taken into account by Admissions Offices. It may be deeply unfair, but it's the blunt truth.

    I don't need you, nor anyone, especially an elitist adcom that only looks at grades, and nothing else, (like in the UK) to tell me that the events in my life that played a big part in me getting the grades that I have received so far, don't matter.
    They are obviously of major significance in your life and nobody would minimise the struggle you've had to get where you are. Not many people would be standing after the events you describe. But sadly, LSE and Oxbridge applications will first land on the desks of "elitist adcoms" and that's the game you have to play.
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    (Original post by Klix88)
    Kevin, I can understand that in your situation you might be offended by poohat's comments, but in all honesty he really is accurately presenting the situation you'll find in the UK. It's better to know what you're up against.


    Unfortunately these won't be of much use for an application to LSE or Oxbridge. The reason people keep talking about your GPA, is because this really is the critical factor.


    That's great, but in your post above you couldn't think how you were going to do this. Your plan to talk to your teaching staff is definitely the way forward.


    I'm sure that poohat didn't mean that in the sense of your wider life. But certainly in the narrow single issue of getting into LSE or Oxbridge, you need to move past your issues. They won't be taken into account by Admissions Offices. It may be deeply unfair, but it's the blunt truth.


    They are obviously of major significance in your life and nobody would minimise the struggle you've had to get where you are. Not many people would be standing after the events you describe. But sadly, LSE and Oxbridge applications will first land on the desks of "elitist adcoms" and that's the game you have to play.
    Thanks for your honest feedback. The one thing that I have learned from this thread is that I need to raise my GPA, which is possible is I work hard and learn what I am doing wrong. I am close to the minimums that LSE requires (a 3.5) and pretty close to Cambridge (3.6), so it's not doom and gloom. Maybe universities in the UK are more focused on grades (and that's their choice) and I just have to live with it. Universities in the US are more holistic and that's ok too, and for universities in the states that I want to get into (UC Berkeley, Harvard, Columbia, etc.) I need to raise my GPA too. Bottom line - work hard and get my grades up.
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    (Original post by kevin1297)
    How would you recommend doing that? Besides simply studying more, I can't really come up with any solutions to getting better grades.

    Regarding admission to UK schools, it isn't all doom and gloom. I still have 5 semesters left of college to improve my grades, and at a 3.43, I am pretty close to LSE's minimum of 3.5, and Cambridge's minimum of a 3.6. I could do it if I work hard and work consistently.

    Just a heads up, as someone who was just rejected from my first LSE choice. A minimum is indeed that, a minimum. My GPA is a 3.73 and I've got good work experience and student life stuff - I'm a supervisor at a non-profit, and I co-found and vice chaired a USG committee that is highly popular. My application was tailored for LSE, and I still got rejected.

    You very well might get in, but these schools are among the best in the world, and their acceptance rates are minuscule.
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    (Original post by gnomgnomuch)
    Just a heads up, as someone who was just rejected from my first LSE choice. A minimum is indeed that, a minimum. My GPA is a 3.73 and I've got good work experience and student life stuff - I'm a supervisor at a non-profit, and I co-found and vice chaired a USG committee that is highly popular. My application was tailored for LSE, and I still got rejected.

    You very well might get in, but these schools are among the best in the world, and their acceptance rates are minuscule.
    Yeah, i know what you mean. It sucks that LSE is so competitive, given that I really want to go, but just don't have the study strategies and the grades (so far) to be a serious applicant. Maybe the fact that I'm from the states would help. I've heard that LSE looks at American students as cash cows.
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    (Original post by kevin1297)
    Yeah, i know what you mean. It sucks that LSE is so competitive, given that I really want to go, but just don't have the study strategies and the grades (so far) to be a serious applicant. Maybe the fact that I'm from the states would help. I've heard that LSE looks at American students as cash cows.

    I'm from the US man, I think they look at us like cash cows only because they charge us SO much more money. But I don't think the standards are any different. I'm waiting on another LSE application, but i'm not too big on it, it's a bit different from what I want to do, plus it's more expensive.

    Plus, I got accepted to UCL for the same exact program that LSE offers. Granted LSE is a better program, but UCL is the better overall school, and I want to eventually end up teaching, so the UCL name will help a-lot. (All bets are off if I get into Oxford, waiting to hear back from them).

    In terms of study habits, I tend to focus intensely during class, I also take superb notes. I then go over the stuff on my own time if I don't get the material.

    Also, feel free to message me if you want to continue this conversation =)
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    (Original post by kevin1297)
    Would Oxbridge/LSE take me with a lower GPA (upper 2:1 range)
    Who said a GPA of 3.5 is 'upper 2:1'? Pretty sure both Oxford and Cambridge said a 2:1 is 3.6, let alone a high 2:1.
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    (Original post by kevin1297)
    That being said, I am a smart guy, and have an IQ of over 125, but it never really translated to my academic performance. I am really scared about grad school because I feel like all they care about is GPA, and don't really care about much else.
    That might take into account of other achievements of yours, such as work experience, research experience, awards, etc. But an IQ score of whatever that doesn't translate into anything else is not very helpful.
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    (Original post by kevin1297)
    Universities in the US are more holistic and that's ok too, and for universities in the states that I want to get into (UC Berkeley, Harvard, Columbia, etc.) I need to raise my GPA too. Bottom line - work hard and get my grades up.
    US universities are only 'holistic' at undergrad level, their grad schools are every bit as meritocratic as those in the UK. It might be different when it comes to Masters programs becuase there arent that many terminal masters in the US, but at least for PhD admissions the good US grad schools only care about grades, GRE, and research experience - not extracurriculars. They are also even more selective than the LSE/Oxbridge masters.

    I dont think most of the schools you listed do terminl Economics masters degrees? Berkeley/Harrvard dont seem to have one, Columbia is starting one this year for the first time.

    This might be useful: https://www.aeaweb.org/gradstudents/Schools.php . None of the very top schools offer Masters program but there are still some good schools that have them (Boston University, Duke, UMichigan, UWashington, etc)
 
 
 
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