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Is engineering at UVa very difficult?

colleclassof2013colleclassof2013 Posts: 153Registered User Junior Member
edited March 2009 in University of Virginia
Does anyone know the average GPA engineers have and on average how many hours they spend on homework every night. Also is an engineering degree from UVa respectable in the eyes of employers. I also got accepted to UCLA and UMICH for engineering. I'm out of state for all of these school. For an engineering degree which of the three school is the best (UCLA, UVA, UMich). Money is a big factor as well. I got very little aid at UMich, about 8000 at UCLA, and I expect about 12,000 from UVa given my financial situation. So out of the three schools, UVa is the most affordable but I believe Mich has the best engineering progrm but it'll cost me 40,000+ a year. Right now I'm torn so any advice or help would be great. Thanks.
Post edited by colleclassof2013 on

Replies to: Is engineering at UVa very difficult?

  • galoisiengaloisien Posts: 3,741- Senior Member
    I get the feeling that the e-school is very rigourous, even though I've only taken one course in the e-school so far (I'm a p-chem student). It's quite a different world from the College.
  • MechWahooMechWahoo Posts: 310Registered User Member
    No matter where you go, engineering students on average have lower GPAs and more homework than their colleges as a whole. Here, SEAS requires 15 hours per semester while A&S (known as Arts & Crafts by some) only requires 12 hours to be considered full time.

    I spend 3-5 hours a day on homework.
  • colleclassof2013colleclassof2013 Posts: 153Registered User Junior Member
    If you don't mind my asking, what specific field of engineering are you majoring in? Also what is your current GPA? I know at some school engineering is very very very rigorous such as Carnegie Mellon, MIT, and Berkeley. Those engineering student spend on average 6-7+ hours on homework every night. So I'm guessing UVa engineering is not as rigorous. Also do you feel like you still have time to socialize and hang out with friends, attend sporting events, etc? I completely understand if you don't feel comfortable answering my questions, but thanks for the help.
  • MechWahooMechWahoo Posts: 310Registered User Member
    I'm BME and my GPA is much better than average. I can't really compare to the other schools, but I feel the UVA program is very rigorous and I'm very pleased with the program.

    When I say 3-5 hours, that is 3-5 hours every day. I am probably working more like 6 hours, but a lot of that is doing stuff like this rather than studying, so I have about 3-5 solid hours of actual homework time. If I have a group project deadline, that time can double. I rarely get to bed before 0300.

    You'll have time to socialize but you'll have to be choosy. I won't miss an ACC basketball game or any football game but I skipped a lot of bball games this year.

    A lot, too, depends on your career plans. If you don't have plans for grad school, a 3.3 or 3.4 is maybe okay. Nearly all BME undergraduates, though, aim for grad or med school.
  • hazelorbhazelorb Posts: 3,103Registered User Senior Member
    UVa - Undergraduate Grade Point Averages

    as a cs101 TA, i can tell you those kids spend 10+ hours on each assignment (due every other week). i have a lot of eschool friends and they are always working on hw, even when we're hanging out. so it's kind of a "i'll socialize, but i'll do my hw at the same time" kind of deal. the "stacks" (a big comp lab) is a huge gathering place for eschoolers.

    eschool is very rigorous, but then you get a job. uva is very work-hard, play-hard... there are a lot of engineering fraternities (read: drinking clubs... like trigon, the girls' eng. sorority, the black eng. frat, etc etc... no really i know ppl in all of them, all they do together is drink) so yeah a lot of play-hard but then a lot of all-nighters. that's no different than any other eng. school though.
  • galoisiengaloisien Posts: 3,741- Senior Member
    What's a good GPA for a semi-engineeringesque double major, since p-chem/materials science track has a lot of cross-over with the e-school?
  • OuterbanksOuterbanks Posts: 5Registered User New Member
    Why would you ask such a question? 1. It is U Va. A top school in the nation. 2. It is engineering. 3. It is college.

    No, engineering at U Va is a breeze. You do hardly any work at all, just basically show up and get your diploma.

    Are you really college ready with such an elementary question?
  • ingerpingerp Posts: 866Registered User Member
    I can tell you that I went through one semester with pretty much three all-nighters a week. I don't remember the others being quite that crazy, but any good engineering school is going to require hard work. (But you knew that already, right?)
  • colleclassof2013colleclassof2013 Posts: 153Registered User Junior Member
    Wow you guys must really think I'm dumb. Of course I know engineering is perhaps one of the toughest yet most rewarding majors. I was just asking just to get an idea of how engineering is like at UVa and to find out if I would have any time to still experience college like the way other students do at UVa. College is not only about growing intellectually but in all aspects. So basically I wanted to know if I would be able to attend sporting events, party, etc while studying hard during the week? Do engineers study during the weekends too? Also is engineering cutthroat at UVa or do people help each other out without hesitation?
  • weldonweldon Posts: 537Registered User Member
    colleclass: I can answer some of your questions, not all. Yes you can in general attend sporting events and parties, go on outings, etc., but you will need to be a good manager of your time- you can't indulge yourself on a routine basis. Studying during the week is a must, because the key is to not fall behind in anything. But there are times (not most of the time, but sometimes) when you'll also need to devote most of your weekend to work, particularly if there is a major assignment or project due the following week. Note that this kind of crunch can also be avoided to some extent by carefully planning ahead so you don't have as much to do at the last minute. Just remember, an engineering program at almost any school is not about super brilliance so much as it is about self-discipline, time management, and "endurance". In a way it's kind of like having an actual job. You don't finish a big task and then relax for a week; you finish a big task and then immediately go on to the next one. Having the psychology to do this is the most important thing.
  • hazelorbhazelorb Posts: 3,103Registered User Senior Member
    Also is engineering cutthroat at UVa or do people help each other out without hesitation?

    I haven't seen any cutthroat attitudes in my CS TA-ing... There's supposed to be a lack of cheating but you learn very quickly that that isn't the case. :( So basically everyone helps eachother out a lot from what I've seen. The cutthroat attitudes are more in pre-med and in psych - those are the two depts I've heard of with bell curves (and forgive me for calling pre-med a dept).

    i think your other question (can you have time to party) has been answered by this point (yes if you plan well or take a hit to your gpa).
  • MechWahooMechWahoo Posts: 310Registered User Member
    E-school is not cutthroat, but if you party too much and don't pull your share of your group's workload, word will get around quick. A bad reputation will mean no one will invite you to join their group. You'll end up in a weaker group and your grades will suffer.

    This is very true in BME - it's not competition per se, but group members don't want their grades hurt because some dirtbag doesn't show up for meetings or wants to go skiing every weekend.
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