Mar 142013

Question by Anna: Is it impossible to get accepted into Graduate school in Psychology with a 2.5 GPA?
I graduated in 2008 with my BS degree. I have three years of research lab experience and strong LOR’s from my professors. I am interested in studying cognitive psychology or neuroscience. I wish I studied harder as an undergrad, but I didn’t think then that it was so important to maintain a high GPA.

Best answer:

Answer by MomSezNo
Probably. Consult one of the grad program guidebooks to see what the GPA stats are for different programs.

Why would you think it wouldn’t be important to maintain a high GPA? In college, your job is to study and learn; a high GPA is evidence of your ability to do your job well.

Give your answer to this question below!

  2 Responses to “Is it impossible to get accepted into Graduate school in Psychology with a 2.5 GPA?”

  1. Normally a 3.5 GPA is required. Your best possibility is to discuss your situation with your lab directors and former professors and see if they know of any programs where they have personal contacts and can do more for you than writing an LOR.

    Your chances of admission are slim, but it would help immensely if you can be listed among the authors of a paper which will be published in a respected peer reviewed journal.

  2. Probably not. Every grad school I know of requires a minimum 3.0 GPA, and most like to see higher. But take heart, you can do it eventually with a plan. I used to work for the graduate admissions office in my university when I was a grad student, and I ran the information sessions for students trying to get into the masters program. Here’s what I advised them to do, and it almost always resulted in their eventual acceptance:

    1. Apply for the masters program.

    2. Sign up (even while you are waiting for a decision) to be a “non-matriculated” student. Almost all schools will allow you to take up to 4 classes as a non-degree student, and then if you are accepted into the program, it will count on your matriculated transcript.

    3. Get A’s in the non-matriculated courses, and ask one of those professors to write you a reference letter, if they are willing. Reference letters from the school’s own professors are highly regarded.

    These are important steps, because with a low GPA, the school will be concerned that you will not be able to handle graduate work. Getting an “A” in their courses proves that you can.

    4. If you get accepted, wheeee! If not, keep going with the non-matriculated classes (usually you can only take two per semester) and then apply again for the following year, early in the fall, for early decision. Update your personal statement and application to reflect that you are taking classes in the program as a non-matriculated student.

    Lastly, address your low grades in your personal statement when you apply the first time. Did you have a valid reason (other than goofing off and having a good time) like an illness, family or financial crisis, etc.

    Best of luck!

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