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is it better to apply to college w a low gpa or transfer after 1st year?

i’m a high school junior and my gpa is low, 2.5 

not trying to find an excuse, but for the past 3 years i’ve been dealing w a lot of issues, family problems, death of family members, cancer, being homeless- it’s been tough. 

both of my dream universities require high gpas and there’s no way i could get in with my gpa. this has made me super stressed, i’ve been crying all the time, literally crying right now. 

so my question is: are my chances of getting into my dream schools higher by me applying with my low gpa now, or going to community college and doing really well and applying and transferring after my first year? 

also, am i allowed to apply to the same uni twice? should i apply when deadlines roll around next year and also if i have to go to community college? are my chances of getting into my dream schools harder as a transfer? 

please help :(

5 Answers

  • 1 month ago

    Unfortunately, it is unlikely that you'd be accepted by a university if your GPA is more than .5 below the average for admitted students.  For example, if students at your dream school generally have a GPA higher than 3.0, your chances of admissions are very low. Your chances also depend on other factors like the total admission rate of the university. 

    You may choose to apply anyway.  If you have a very  strong SAT/ACT and letters of recommendation, you might get in.  If you don't apply, you definitely won't get in, so you might want to go for it.

    Getting into a university as a transfer student depends on many factors.  Some are up to you, like getting a much better GPA.  One thing you can look at is the retention rate at the universities that interest you.  For example, if a university has a retention rate of 95%, that means that there aren't very many openings for transfer students.  Your high school guidance counselor can help you understand all of this and look at the data for the specific universities.  

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  • 1 month ago

    You have no chance of being accepted to any university with such a low GPA. Plus, you are clearly dealing with a lot of issues. Take university off the table for now. Your situation is much better suited to going to community college. Earn your associate's degree with excellent grades, then apply as a transfer student.

    Do NOT waste money on application fees when there's no way you are going to be accepted, and do NOT expose yourself to the disappointment & emotional upheaval of receiving a rejection. That's self-sabotage. Go to CC. Get your life in order, get your GPA, get your general education requirements completed. Give yourself a good chance instead of setting yourself up for failure.

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    • John
      Lv 5
      1 month agoReport

      There are indeed many small and mid-sized schools which will accept students who have C averages in high school.  Based on this OP's message, however, I have to agree with Ibu in this case.  The OP details many personal difficulties, which makes CC a better choice for this student.    

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  • 1 month ago

    you can always go to a community college and then transfer

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  • drip
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    You can apply to universities now. Then if you don’t get in you can go to a community college.  Then apply again to the universities.  You can have your guidance counselor write you a letter of explaination to the universities when you apply.

    I would also apply to universities you may have a better chance at getting into.   Ones  with high acceptance rates. Have you visited any of the dream schools?   

    I took my daughter on a college visit to a university that seemed absolutely perfect for her. Neither of us liked it once on campus. She didn’t even bother to apply to them. 

    You may find another university fits you well.  And you don’t want to transfer out.

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  • Pearl
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    you could try going to a community college and then transfer

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