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Possible poor Masters rank

cambridgemusclecambridgemuscle Registered User Posts: 26 New Member
edited July 2007 in Graduate School
I got the results of my masters today and was initially quite pleased. I'd been told by my supervisor that the dissertation deserved first-class marks, and as it turned out, I was just one percent off (grading scale is essentially 55-75, with 58 being an absolute fail; I got 69). The grade I received is said to indicate that the work contained roughly equal portions of 1st and 2.1 quality work, so GPA approx 3.6. In the mark scheme, any result above 67 is indicative of a candidate’s ability to continue towards a Cambridge PhD.

However, the quality of the cohort is extremely high, and it seems everybody scored around the 70 mark. As such, when ranked, I could appear near the bottom (if not the bottom) of our group of 25.

I'm starting a PhD at USC in August and will need to present official transcripts at the start of registration, and I'm a little worried that my decent undergrad rankings will look rather strange next to a low masters rank, even though the GPAs will be similar. Do people think this will affect the way I am treated in the department or even result in a loss of funding?
Post edited by cambridgemuscle on

Replies to: Possible poor Masters rank

  • Phoenix WrightPhoenix Wright Registered User Posts: 100 Junior Member
    Why didn't you continue at Cambridge? Secondly, departments, with regards to funding, only care about the work you do there.
  • cambridgemusclecambridgemuscle Registered User Posts: 26 New Member
    Multitude of reasons. I'd been there for four years and things were feeling stale, both academically and socially. I did my BA in Poli Sci but had to switch to History due to the specialisation of faculty in each dept (Lots of Americanists in hist, mostly Latin American and European in Pol) and I really wanted to get back to the rigour of Pol. Plus, funding is a pain in the UK. You have to wait 'till August for any response from funding bodies, and if, like about two thirds of applicants, you don't get anything, September is a mad dash to find domestic scholarships within the university (which again seem arbitrarily allocated). Finally, USC had some decent Americanists I wanted to work with.
  • psmyth000psmyth000 Registered User Posts: 514 Member
    Does Cambridge rank students?
  • cambridgemusclecambridgemuscle Registered User Posts: 26 New Member
    Some years it has, some years it hasn't. There's a place on the transcript for a rank but I'm not sure they'll fill it in/.
  • psmyth000psmyth000 Registered User Posts: 514 Member
    I go to the LSE and I don't believe we are ranked. Did my undergraduate in Dublin and we were not ranked. I thought rank was mainly an american thing.
  • cambridgemusclecambridgemuscle Registered User Posts: 26 New Member
    I don't think rank means anything when the class size is so small and when everyone is within about 5% of one another--clustered around the 2.1/1st border. I guess that's the problem with the British grading scale.
This discussion has been closed.