How important GPA is in the admission process?

<p>So I am a freshman right now and I understand that I don't have to think about graduate school yet. However, graduate school is already my plan after college. I started out college not so successfully with A-, and 2 B's. Therefore, my GPA now is very low 3.23. I don't think it is possible that I will get 4.0 in the last 2 terms to get a 3.7 after freshman year. Therefore, I am very worried about my GPA. My question is what is a competitive GPA to graduate school, specifically for biological sciences (immunology/cancer bio/molecular bio) ? How important GPA is in the application ? Regarding how tough is my school, I am attending Union College (NY). I don't really know what level is my school in the ladder of academic rigor</p>

<p>It does have some importance from what I’ve heard. Most programs have cutoffs at 3.0 and many applicants have 3.5+. That said, the other parts of your application can make up for a so so GPA.</p>

<p>Additionally, undergrad school name has a very low or no impact on admissions.</p>

<p>^ I disagree. Undergraduate has quite an impact. I have talked to actual professors and they explicitly make it clear that they take undergraduate reputation into question. However, if they have not heard about your school, that would not preclude you from getting into a top program. Just that a top school with a strong GPA is like an additional bonus</p>

<p>I have talked to “actual professors” also and they have told me it has little impact. Much more important is research experience, GPA, LORs, personal statement, and GRE’s. I suppose it undergrad name can be important for tie breakers though. </p>

<p>There have been many threads on this issue.</p>

<p>Thanks for your answer. So will a 3.7 GPA be competitive for a top program ? I mean like when we applied for undergrad, 3.7 seems pretty low because it is not super hard to get a 3.9 or 4.0 in high school (sorry if I am being subjective). So I don’t know if it is much harder to get 3.7-4.0 in college.</p>

<p>Will 3.23 in the first term of freshman year destroy my hope for a top program in biological sciences ? I mean I will try to pull it up as much as possible. Do they consider that I take an accelerated class (I got a B in this chem 110 class, which is 101+102 combined) and a honor class ?</p>

<p>For many grad programs, the first two years of your undergrad GPA doesn’t matter much. They look at your last two years GPA. So you have plenty of time to achieve your desired GPA.</p>

<p>3.23 is not bad in the sciences. Not all GPAs are created equal either, as many undergraduate majors are much easier than others. If grad school is your desire, start looking at 5 or 10 potentials schools in your programs of desire and see what they require for admittance. Strive to exceed those prerequisites in the next 3.5 years in college.</p>