Table of Contents
1. What is a GPA?
2. Why your GPA matters
3. 5 factors that can help to balance low grades/GPA
4. Summary

What is a GPA? 

GPA stands for Grade Point Average. It’s a number that is reached by adding up the points you have scored for your classes and dividing it by the total number of credits for all the classes you have taken. An A grade is usually scored as a 4.0. A high GPA indicates that you’ve done well in your classes whereas a low GPA shows you did not get high grades. It’s a number that is often used when assessing if you are able to cope with the demands and expectations of various academic programs. 

Why your GPA matters 

If you’re hoping to go to a top business school they will most likely have a requirement for a high GPA. Harvard, INSEAD, and Bocconi – for example – expect you to be able to demonstrate being able to get consistently high grades. But there are ways you can balance a low GPA/ low grades. 

5 factors that can help to balance low grades/GPA

1. Hone your CV and make it competitive

A stand-out CV can give you the edge over students who have high GPAs if you can demonstrate a passion and expertise for your given career path. It’s worth seeking out volunteer roles and internships that will make your CV look impressive to an admissions board. You want them to sit up and take notice of you and a great CV will help do that.

2. Ace your entrance exams

Your GPA is just one way to show your academic ability to an admissions board. A high grade on the GMAT or the GRE will help balance low grades and show you have the skills to cope with their programs. You can score highly on the GRE and GMAT if you use a test prep center that knows how to help you do that.

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3. Do brilliantly during the interview

If you manage to secure an interview, then putting in the time to prep for it with an expert will help you do well. Knowing what questions you can expect as well as your answers to them is crucial. A good Admissions Consultant will help you go over questions and answers as well as help you form a compelling argument for why they should choose you. How you do during the interview can really balance a low GPA so make sure you invest time ahead of the big day on your interview skills. 

4. Choose schools with lower GPA requirements

Some business schools will accept students with lower GPAs. This is where doing your research is crucial. The admissions pages of school websites show their admissions requirements and what the school expects you to add to life on campus. If a school values a multilingual student body, for example, being able to demonstrate fluency in several languages, or the fact that you have studied or worked abroad might just sway things in your favor. Networking with 

5. Have outstanding recommendations

One part of your admissions story is what others say about you. Suppose you have compelling recommendations from former employers and professors that will help you balance out a low GPA/ low grade. Make sure you don’t leave this until the last minute as the recommenders will need time to write you a glowing recommendation.


You are more than your grades and a low GPA is just one part of the story when it comes to the admissions process. Working with an expert in admissions consulting can help give you the best chance of success when it comes to getting accepted into a dream school.

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