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What CS Schools should I be looking at?

flyingicecreamflyingicecream Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
I'm currently a high school junior and I'm beginning to thoroughly consider my options and if I can get into any top CS schools.
3.5 Unweighted GPA
4.4 Weighted GPA
12 AP Classes(11 5's, 1 4 on AP Lang)
1560 SAT
780 Biology E, 800 Math II, I'm probably gonna take one more this summer
Class Rank around 11%(one of the top-ranked public schools in the country)
Varsity Basketball 4 years
Varsity Track 4 years(set school record, was a competitor, not a participant)
Robotics Team 3 years(captain)
Science Fair(won school fair, 2nd award at the state level, etc...)(CS projects)(done it since 6th grade)
Started a Kaggle Team which has been fairly successful in competitions
Done research at nearby medical school weekly for a past year(over summer and through the school year)
Co-developed a site that has 1,000,000+ annual users
Volunteered at Church every weekend for 3 hours
Income around 200k


Replies to: What CS Schools should I be looking at?

  • bogeyorparbogeyorpar Registered User Posts: 768 Member
    Everything else looks good, but why the 3.5 unweighted GPA? That could be a problem for many top programs.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 72,936 Senior Member
    if I can get into any top CS schools.

    3.5 Unweighted GPA

    "Top CS schools" will be high or unrealistic reaches with a 3.5 unweighted HS GPA.
  • DadTwoGirlsDadTwoGirls Registered User Posts: 4,714 Senior Member
    I am thinking the same thing as @bogeyorpar and @ucbalumnus. How much was your unweighted GPA pulled down by subjects other than math, physics, and computer science? Did you have straight A's in these areas and B's everywhere else, or were the grades more scattered?

    I am wondering whether you can get into CS at U.Mass Amherst. I think that it is worth an application. To me this is the level that I would aim for with a 3.5 unweighted GPA. You could send one or two applications to higher ranked schools, but you can do very well in life with a degree in CS from U.Mass (and I know many people who have done exactly that). U.Conn is of course another obvious school to apply to.
  • Twoin18Twoin18 Registered User Posts: 932 Member
    If you can afford to be full pay (~$45K-$50K for 3 years rather than 4) and are set on CS, you should look seriously at Oxbridge. They will love the 5s in APs and not care at all about your GPA (although it all depends on the interview and admissions test). Getting a good AMC-12/AIME qualifying score this year would help too (make sure you are registered and practice over the holidays).
  • ColoradomamaColoradomama Registered User Posts: 2,028 Senior Member
    Do you want to play sports in college? Are you good enough to be recruited for Division 3? Look into that,
    and that will change my answer a lot, but look at schools like Case Western, Rochester, for sports and it may help you. Both Rochester and Case are on one of the Great Lakes and unpopular for location meaning easier to get in.

    I would also look at UIUC, in Central Illinois, if you have As in math, look at Purdue U, as well.

    U of Wisconsin Madison. Iowa State U. Auburn in Alabama, and try for Case Western Reserve U,
    but your GPA may kill you there. It all depends on what subjects you got Bs in though. Get the interview at Case Western, and visit Cleveland, they have a very low yield so if you show genuine interest in Case Western it could help, and they accept about 30% of applicants. CWRU's program is outstanding in CS, control theory and data sciences.

    If you really want to go to school in Europe, maybe Oxbridge, but do you want to go to undergrad in Europe?
    I don't recommend that if you want a job in the USA afterwards.
  • CS_ParentCS_Parent Registered User Posts: 92 Junior Member
    Rutger-NB is highly respected for CS program
  • privatebankerprivatebanker Registered User Posts: 2,120 Senior Member
    edited January 10
    Umass Amherst grad cs is number 20 in usnwr tied with rice and right behind Harvard and number 11 in artificial intelligence. Where it it is ranked higher than Harvard Columbia penn Dartmouth. Brown etc Undergrad cs admittance rate is under 30 percent.

    I think it’s worth a shot but people don’t know the quality of umass Amherst cs level.

    Many flagships are the top cs schools outside cal tech Stanford and mit
  • MWolfMWolf Registered User Posts: 190 Junior Member
    @Coloradomama UIUC is one of those "Top CS Schools". UIUC Engineering students have GPAs 3.7-4.0 (SATs 1430-1530), with the CS 2018 admitted student average being 3.87, and their Engineering acceptance rate is pretty low, I think it's in the teens, so it would also be a reach, especially since the OP is OOS.
  • GreymeerGreymeer Registered User Posts: 475 Member
    ^ UIUC 2017 eng admit rate was 43% not teens.
  • retiredfarmerretiredfarmer Registered User Posts: 713 Member
    edited January 10
    Clarkson University may be viable for CS. Well established with a 66% acceptance rate, but I do not know the acceptance rate for CS.
  • MWolfMWolf Registered User Posts: 190 Junior Member
    edited January 11
    @Greymeer Where do you get those numbers from? I get mine from people I know, or rather that my wife knows, though they may be out of date.

    The engineering departments are all ranking in the top 10. And, although I do not think that the USANews rankings are good, it is the rankings that bring people to apply - the higher the ranking, the more people apply, and the more people apply, the lower the acceptance rate.
  • GreymeerGreymeer Registered User Posts: 475 Member
    edited January 11
    @MWolf "Where do you get those numbers "

    From their ASEE profile... Colleges provide these numbers for a yearly engineering report.

    UIUC reported 14k applications, 6k acceptances... 6/14 is 42.8... Those are UIUCs self reported numbers. If it is wrong then UIUC is at fault.

    UIUC new applicants:

    The report:

    Based on other data in their section UIUC CS admit rate is approx 25%.
  • yikesyikesyikesyikesyikesyikes Forum Champion U. Michigan Posts: 1,813 Forum Champion
    This is interesting because your stats were so similar to mine (mine were very slightly worse). Also, the 1MM + users for the website is really impressive.


    UIUC would be a match school if he applied for anyone of the programs that are still CS, but not in the engineering school.

    1) CS + Math (I got into this + honors despite missing the deadline for honors 4 years ago - might be more competitive now)
    2) CS + Statistics
    3) The CS + X degree programs

    Also, I recommend that the OP look into Maryland, College Park for CS. It has a fantastic CS program. That would be a safety/match school. I got into the school with CS with the highest level of the President's Scholarship 4 years ago (indicating it was probably a safety for me). Unless it has gotten exponentially more competitive, it will be a safety (MAYBE a low match) for the OP. OP can also look into Michigan as a low reach (I got in, but barely - OP might do better, especially with the website he apparently co-developed). Stanford/Berkeley/CMU/MIT can be applied to as reaches.

  • GreymeerGreymeer Registered User Posts: 475 Member
    Here is a thread I did months ago on the engineering admit rates based on the ASEE new applicant data...

    Engineering Admit Rates:
  • MWolfMWolf Registered User Posts: 190 Junior Member
    @yikesyikesyikes You're probably right about the CS programs outside of Engineering, and it's overall a good strategy.

    @Greymeer The numbers look like the 2016 numbers truncated - looking at the number for the previous years, it's unlikely that ASEE would only provide numbers rounded up to thousands. So those aren't actually the numbers for 2017, but some error. So we'll have to go with 2016, which is closer to your stats than to mine. I think that the Urbana people who provided my wife with their numbers were bragging and used the enrollment, rather than accepted numbers. Ahhh, the oneupmanship of academics... (my wife has her PhD from UIUC but works at another university).

    Looking at the stats of the accepted engineering students, there must be some serious self-selection.
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