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Author Topic: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?  (Read 14634 times)

TheNewGuy

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Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« on: July 27, 2004, 04:00:40 AM »
I don't have the best ugrad gpa right now, it's pretty mediocre considering the schools I would like to goto (mostly top 25). If I don't get in to any schools, I'll  finish my senior year, then work for a year, or get my masters, then re-apply to law schools again in the fall of '05. My main dillema right now is trying to decide whether or not to get an M.A., or to just work for a year. With a mediocre gpa, what do you think would be more beneficial??

My other question is, would an M.A. in something like Liberal Studies be respected by adcoms?? I'm a history major, but finding a well repsected school that offers an M.A. in History is difficult (almost all only offer Ph.d's) so the only other area of study that looks interesting is Liberal Studies. Would this be looked down on??


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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2004, 06:32:56 AM »
Sounds like a lot of added expense to go for your Masters if you're not even sure which Masters you want.  On the other hand, one year of work experience isn't going to counteract bad grades (you need to think more like, five).

Getting a master's is the quicker option, but do you really want to sit in classes again if it's not something you're passionate about?

Just throwing that out there.

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shadowcreeper

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2004, 07:31:19 AM »
My LSAT scores are lower than I would like them to be. My UGPA is good, but I knew it was not going to counteract the LSAT score. I graduated two years ago, got a full time job and started a masters program full time at night. I think that the more things that you can do from graduation till applying again can only help. I am still not going to get into the top tiered schools, but hopefully all of the extra things that I am going to bring to the table will get me into one of my T2 stretches.

If you have the time and the money to go for your masters while working, I suggest you do it.... but only if you think you can maintain a phenomenal GPA.

Good luck
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TheNewGuy

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2004, 12:59:17 PM »
Thanks for the tips shadow....by the way, how much more difficult are graduate classes than ugrad classes?

TheNewGuy

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2004, 01:01:27 PM »
Sounds like a lot of added expense to go for your Masters if you're not even sure which Masters you want. 


I never said I don't know which masters I want...I KNOW I want History, but most schools don't offer that...so my next choice is Liberal Studies. I'm just wondering if adcoms will respect an M.A. in Liberal Studies.

Casper

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2004, 01:09:21 PM »
In grad school, you are limited to taking the courses that are specific to your masters degree.  No more taking core requirements, such as english, lit, math, science, etc.  So, in a way, they are much easier than overall undergrad.  But to offset that, the courses would cover much more material compared to an undergrad course. 

Also, in my experience, most master's program require you to maintain a 3.0 gpa.  If you do not complete the assignments, you're given an extension or asked to repeat the course again.  Depending on the professors, they rarely ever given out grades below a B minus. 

Instead of thinking of getting a maser's degree.  Try acing the lsats instead.  It's another option to consider.  Which also seems the easiest route to take.

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Bisquick

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2004, 01:09:36 PM »
Forgive me for being a clueless engineer... but what is "Liberal Studies"?
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Casper

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2004, 01:18:26 PM »
That would be a master's in liberal arts, I think.
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Bisquick

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2004, 01:23:39 PM »
Do you specialize within that?  That seems incredibly broad to me. (Sorry for sidetracking the post a bit.)
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shadowcreeper

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Re: Medicore ugrad GPA....working vs. Masters degree?
« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2004, 01:53:11 PM »
Thanks for the tips shadow....by the way, how much more difficult are graduate classes than ugrad classes?

I am getting an MA in corporate and public communications. The poster who talked about a high minimum GPA is right. If you drop below a B or a B minus (not sure which one, I think it depends on the school) you go on academic probation and that is noted in your transcripts. Which is very bad, if you can not maintain a good GPA, getting your masters is not going to help you.

I agree that the classes are more focused and you do not have core classes outside of the concentration, but there are core classes that need to be taken in your concentration. For example, for me to graduate and get my masters, I needed to take 5 classes that were mandatory, without them, I do not get my degree. So there are core classes, just not ones outside of your concentration.

Is it easier? No, I do not think it is. The classes are so theory laden that you need to read and understand the concepts to move on in the class. If you get hung up on some of the theories, you are kind of screwed because they build off of one another. Just showing up to class does not cut it in grad school, you need to have something special to add to the discussion or you are going to look like a moron. Things are not black and white any longer, you need to question everything and look deeper than the surface. Grading is much harder because so much more is expected of you. My papers are normally 25 to 30 pages a piece, which is not a big deal, but when you have more than one class and they pile up, it can get a little rough. I am not sure about all programs, but I need to write a mini-dissertation to graduate, meaning I do all my own research and try to get published as well as stand up in front of a committee and hold my own as they try to rip apart my theories and findings. All in all, it is a different kind of atmosphere. I happen to thrive in it, but I have always been a glutton for punishment. Plus, the research and writing skills that I am fine tuning in grad school are immensely important and they will pay off big time in law school.

I think if you can get through it with a good GPA it can only help you, but if you do mediocre or if you wind up on academic probation, it will hurt you much more than it could ever help you.

Just my thoughts though. If you have any other questions feel free to send me a private message.

~K
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Nobody's gonna stand in my way.
Give it up son, I'm doin this my way.. Seether

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