In a series of two blogs, you would find answers to the most frequently asked questions about GPA. Let’s get started.
What is GPA?
Grade Point Average (GPA) is a measure of your academic performance. Used in the United States, it gives you an indication of your overall grades, on a scale of 0-4.
Is it the same as ECTS?
No. ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) is a different grading mechanism, where the grading is on a scale of 1-6 and it is an inverted scale i.e. the higher your grades, the closer you will be to 1, not to 6. You will get a handy, unofficial idea of your ECTS credits on this site http://reknownedu.com/indian-percentage-to-german-gpa-converter/
What is the Junior-Senior GPA?
Junior-Senior GPA is your GPA in last two years of education i.e. 3rd year and 4th year. It is not applicable to three year degree holders, or to people still in their 4th year.
What is Major GPA?
Major GPA is the GPA in courses that comprise your major in your undergraduate degree, in case you have a degree which allows you to graduate with both a major and a minor. So, a Bachelor of Science in Physics means Physics is the major subject. But a Bachelor of Science in Physics with a minor in Math means Physics is the major and Math is the minor.
Is it the same as CGPA?
No. CGPA, a common term in Indian universities, is Cumulative Grade Point Average, and for many universities, it only reflects performance over last two or last four semesters. The scale is also different, usually 0-10 or 0-100.
What about CPI?
All these terms viz. Cumulative Performance Index (CPI), Progressive Performance Index (PPI), Aggregate percentage, and the like, are local terms. They do not have any linear relationship with GPA.
What do you mean linear relationship?
It means, you cannot say that someone with an aggregate percentage of 80% has a GPA of 3.2 out of 4 on US scale, or that someone with a CPI of 7.5/10 has a GPA of 3.0 out of 4 on US scale.
And why not?
Because the calculation is different. Most Indian universities give you absolute grades based on your achieved score in a subject out of the maximum possible score. This is not relative grading. In relative grading, the person with the highest score in a class would be accorded a perfect 4 GPA, or a perfect 10. The comparison is complex, but a simple indicator of your GPA would be to multiply your grade out of 10 with 4.5, or to multiply your aggregate percentage out of 100 by 0.45.
Will that be accurate?
No, but close enough.
Where can I get an accurate calculation?
For a free calculation (not accurate, but approximate), you can use the free GPA calculator of WES on this link https://applications.wes.org/igpa-calculator/. This is by far the most reliable of the available free options.
You can get a paid evaluation done through any of the NACES accredited evaluators. The entire list is here http://www.naces.org/members.html. The cost of evaluation ranges from US $110 to US $230. If you opt for a paid evaluation, always opt for a credit by credit evaluation, not a page by page. The acceptance of evaluators varies, with many universities accepting evaluations only from some recommended evaluators. WES is probably the most widely accepted agency for evaluation.
Can I use any of the above approximate calculations to enter my GPA on a scale of 4.0 in my application?
No. Unless it is mandatory to convert your grade into a scale of 4.0, enter your grades as they are mentioned on your transcripts i.e. x.x out of 10 or xx.xx% out of 100. Most universities allow entering grades in an open format.
That’s it for Part One. If you have more doubts, you could either check the next part or comment below. We will get back to you as soon as we can.
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