What does UMich look at the most in admissions?

<p>Is GPA and test scores a huge factor?</p>

<p>With Berkeley they care about how MANY ECs you do. Is it the same with Michigan as well?</p>

<p>Does the personal statement play a significant role in admissions?</p>

<p><a href="http://www.admissions.umich.edu/applying/Template_Rating_Sheet-REV2009-10.pdf%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.admissions.umich.edu/applying/Template_Rating_Sheet-REV2009-10.pdf&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>This is the sheet they use when evaluating your application. From my experience, GPA is by far the most important factor they use when considering applications.</p>

<p>
[QUOTE]
GPA is by far the most important factor they use when considering applications.

[/QUOTE]
</p>

<p>...damn it.</p>

<p>"With Berkeley they care about how MANY ECs you do..."</p>

<p>Huh? I am not sure who told you that, but Cal does not care that much about ECs. Cal weighs the GPA and SAT/SAT II mpost heavily. </p>

<p>Like any good university, including Cal, Michigan first looks at academic success. This is best measured by looking at strength of curriculum and unweighed GPA. SATs are a distant second. Essays and ECs are important, but not as important as the above.</p>

<p>I hope they don't look at EC's too much. My son is a top student -10x the brains of my daughter who got in, but not into EC activities other than student council.
He is a super brain and teachers always say they want to see where he goes in life. My concern is if he does none of the "extras" how that could count against him. I hate to push these things just for the so called "college resume" if they aren't all that interested in doing them.
We are looking at University of Michigan and University of Alabama-only due to the money they seem to give to attract top students. Not sure if that is a good enough reason to go there when we are in-state for Michigan. Better weather for sure!</p>

<p>Michigan is hard to pass up if you are in-state. Top 10 academics, one of the most prestigious universities on earth, virtually unlimited resources, great campus life, rich athletic tradition and awesome college town. Once out, Michigan has one of the largest, wealthiest and most connected alumni network. All this for half the price of peer institutions such as the Ivy League, Cal, Chicago, Duke, Johns Hopkins and Northwestern. Pretty sweet deal if you ask me.</p>

<p>
[QUOTE]
Huh? I am not sure who told you that, but Cal does not care that much about ECs.

[/QUOTE]
</p>

<p><a href="http://berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2005/05/16_houtreport.pdf%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2005/05/16_houtreport.pdf&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Page 66-67</p>

<p>
[quote]
He is a super brain and teachers always say they want to see where he goes in life. My concern is if he does none of the "extras" how that could count against him. I hate to push these things just for the so called "college resume" if they aren't all that interested in doing them.

[/quote]

Personal pursuits can be interesting assets in your "college resume". What does he like to do with his super brain in his free time?</p>

<p>explodingtoenail, the importance of ECs vary from university to university, but at all top universities, they do not come close to the importance of GPA, strength of curriculum and standardized test scores unless we are talking about a division 1 athlete in a major revenue sport, in which case, a university will obviously lower its standards.</p>

<p>Riverbirch, if I had to choose between U of M and Alabama, I would definitely choose U of M. Also, it seems a lot of people are looking at Alabama, but unless you are a football star I would not choose Alabama. In my opinion, the SEC schools are known more for football and NOT academics (except for Vandy, Georgia, and maybe UF). I think University of Alabama's academic peer in Michigan would be like a Western Michigan or something like that. U of M, MSU and GVSU are much better academically than Alabama. </p>

<p>However, if Alabama were to offer your son a full ride, that would be something to consider.</p>

<p>@Alexandre, that's certainly NOT true. I have seen students at my school get into Harvard, Yale, and UChicago, which are better schools than U of M. Those students admitted to the universities I mentioned in the previous statement, had lower GPA's and test scores, than other applicants in my school who got REJECTED!!! For example, an Asian with 2350 SAT, 3.97 GPA, with a couple EC's got REJECTED, while another Asian student with 1620 SAT (Yes it's not a typo), 3.1 GPA, with diverse EC's got ACCEPTED!!! So, your statement does not hold true. </p>

<p>P.S. the latter students was NOT an athlete, oh, they were competing for a spot in Harvard's 2015 class.</p>

<p>"We are looking at University of Michigan and University of Alabama-only due to the money they seem to give to attract top students. Not sure if that is a good enough reason to go there when we are in-state for Michigan."</p>

<p>Wow--talk about apples and oranges. If you are in-state and your son can get into UM, GO FOR IT! UM is, by any measure, a BARGIN for in-state students that I would find very difficult to pass up.</p>

<p>Sorry, but Alabama does not hold a candle to Michigan.</p>

<p>StanfordCS, we all know of many exceptions, but they are not the rule and do not apply to the vast majority. I know of two students who were admitted into Stanford with 3.3-3.5 GPAs and 1200-1300 SATs (they were not recruited athletes and did not have exceptional ECs) in recent years. I also know of many, many more who were rejected with similar stats. </p>

<p>And Chicago is not better than Michigan, it is a peer. I chose Michigan over Chicago (and I was an Economics major) and would do so in an instant again were I faced with the same decision. The decision did not affect me negatively in the least. When I graduated from college, I had acceptes into two top Economics PhD programs and offers from thre major financial firms, and I was by no means at the top of my class at Michigan. Still, the two schools are way too different to make an effective apple-to-apple comparison.</p>

<p>I beg to differ; UChicago is a MUCH BETTER school than UMichigan. All rankings have Chicago in the top 10, and UMichigan is in the 15-30 range.</p>

<p>UChicago is WAY HARDER to get into than Michigan is.</p>

<p>According to USNews, UChicago is the 5th best University in the nation, which is tied with Stanford.</p>

<p>While, UMichigan is #28.</p>

<p>Not trying to be rude but, how long ago did you graduate? Because, UChicago has come A LONG way in terms of its reputation.</p>

<p>StanfordCS, I graduated from college in 1996 and gfrom graduate school in 2001. I have, however, kept a very watchful eye on universities over the last 10 years. My interest, which started off as a quirky hobby, is now professionally motivated, as my chosen profession depends on knowing what universities are doing.</p>

<p>The USNWR formula favors private universities. It is in fact a methodology to compare private universities to each other. Public universities have totally different fiscal and data-reporting methods that render them completely uncompetitive in the USNWR methodology. That explains why academic powerhouses such as Cal and Mihigan do not even crack the top 20. If the methodology were adjusted from private mode to neutral, and if the data provided by universities were properly audited and consistantly reported, Chicago and Michigan would be ranked within 10 spots of each other. With over 2,000 universities in the US, 10 spots is completely negligible. Heck, even 20 spots is negligible. </p>

<p>The only part of the USNWR that I respect is the Peer Assessment score. Chicago receives a score of 4.6/5.0 while Michigan receives a score of 4.5/5.0. Other rankings geared more at measuring quality of academics and reputation also rank Michigan and Chicago within very close proximity. Those two universities are definitely peers.</p>

<p>And for the record, Chicago's quality and reputation have remained intact since I have started analyzing universities back in the late 80s. Nothing has changed except for Chicago's acceptance rate, which dropped from 40% in 2005 to 15% today thanks to joining the Common Applicantion. But if you look at Chicago's peer assessment score since 1990, it has always hovered between 4.5 and 4.6/5.0 (Michigan's has hovered between 4.4 and 4.6 in that same period). Universities' reputations, assuming they are already established (as has always been the case with Chicago and Michigan) and quality simply do not change that much over time.</p>

<p>Which brings me to the next point; selectivity. It has little impact on quality and adults know it. Only high school kids are impressed by it. No employer or graduate school adcom will ever quote the USNWR rankings or look at something as superficial as acceptance rates to determine whether a candidate is qualified. But if selectivity means that much to you, give Michigan, which joined the Common Application in 2010, another 5 years and you will see a similar trend emerge that all other universities that have joined the common application have enjoyed; namely a drop in acceptance rate. Michigan's acceptance rate has dropped from 50.5% to 39.5% in one year as a result of having joined the common app. Expect another similar drop this year, to approximately 31%. In 4-5 years, Michigan's acceptance rate will probably be in the 20% range. I see nothing special about that.</p>

<p>For the record, I personally group universities and I do in fact place Chicago (along with Cal, Caltech and Columbia) in the group ahead of Michigan (which also includes Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke, Johns Hopkins, Northwestern, Penn and UVa). But those two groups are virtually equal and all 12 universities are peers.</p>

<p>Finally, if you wish to study CS, Michigan is in fact a slightly better choice than Chicago. Michigan's CS department is typically ranked near the top 10 while Chicago's is not usually ranked among the top 30. The different is not significant, but it is worth noting. While 20 spots is not significant when comparing universities overall, it is slightly more significant when comparing specific departments. Companies like Cisco, Google, Microsoft etc... recruit heavily at Michigan and not so much at Chicago.</p>

<p>I have been following your posts--and I agree with your assessments. My son, too, is looking at CS programs. We live in Indiana--and he could go to Purdue for a fraction of the cost of U Michigan--but I really like their program. He is also a recruited athlete (football) for U Chicago and Wash U in St. Louis. Do you have an opinion about the Wash U CS program? He also likes Wisconsin quite a bit--likes the urban feel--though Madison is not exactly Chicago. He is a match for Michigan, I believe, with a 4.0 Unweighted, first in his class and a 32 ACT, Full IB diploma candidate, 300 hours community service, works really hard, and is very serious about technology. More into academics than playing football. I investigated the U Chicago program, it looks pretty good--but does have more of a theoretical side. And your post about who recruits where- is a huge factor that most students should really consider--unless they just plan to go to grad school right away. I think that is lost on alot of young people as they try to find that perfect fit.</p>

<p>You cannot go wrong with any of those schools. There are three factors to consider:</p>

<p>Overall quality:
Here, Chicago has the slight edge, with Michigan and WUSTL closely following it. Wisconsin is next and Purdue is last. That's not to say that Purdue isn't excellent.</p>

<p>Strength in CS:
Wisconsin is excellent in this domain, but Michigan is approximately as good. Purdue comes next. Chicago and WUSTL are last here.</p>

<p>Cost of attendance:
One should not overlook this. Purdue at IS rates is a buy! Wisconsin is roughly $10k/year cheaper than Michigan. Of course, Michigan, Chicago and/or WUSTL could match the cost with merit scholarships/need-based aid, but if they don't, unless finances are not a concern, I think Purdue and Wisconsin would be difficult to turn down.</p>

<p>On a related note, any reason why you are not looking into UIUC (their CS department is the best in the Midwest) and Northwestern (solid CS program and on par with Michigan and WUSTL overall)?</p>

<p>It seems like everything I read from StanfordCS on this board is idiotic. I really wish (s)he'd go away.</p>

<p>I agree with your comments. Yes, he plans to apply to Northwestern-- that was his first school that he visited as a sophomore and really liked it. Probably do that within a week or two. Illinois is an obvious one- I agree that the CS department is likely the best in the midwest--and one of the top in the US. Both schools already have his ACT scores. Illinois likely would offer him Honors. For some reason, the campus does not appeal to him--seems like a more spreadout Purdue. Many of his relatives live about one hour from there though. When it comes to the midwest, the area provides a nice set of options for CS majors. Your thoughts confirmed my own. We won't qualify for aid. We are what they call "in the donut"--a nice income level but not wealthy at all. We pay full tab for everything! With this economy--I keep thinking about it--yet anyone who deserves to go to their school of choice by working literally hours every night on school work--after practices and other EC's deserves a shot. Very tough call. I also know that many of the schools like UICU, Purdue, etc--have tremendous number of key companies come to the school for recruiting. At Purdue, Microsoft has their own day all to themselves! I think Google has an office near Ann Arbor--that sort of thing. Tough to beat compared to the schools like U of Chicago and Wash U. Not sure about Northwestern though it has Chicago as a great source in its backyard. Thanks again for your thoughts.</p>

<p>Alexandre's post #6: "All this for half the price of peer institutions"</p>

<p>That was my impression too, until I came across this: Office</a> of Financial Aid: Cost of Attendance</p>

<p>Am I missing something, or does it really say that an out-of-state junior is expected to spend $53K/year at Michigan?</p>