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Old 01-24-2008, 10:36 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
957 posts, read 3,089,364 times
Reputation: 139

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Quote:
Originally Posted by schertz1 View Post
I hear UTSA is changing admission requirements to improve their image and curtail growth.
Yeah I've heard the same thing, however, it will take some time before it's fully implemented. I think it's a great idea. People who normally wouldn't apply themselves in high school or even a community college because they know they'll get in anyways will now be forced to actually apply themselves and learn something.
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Old 01-25-2008, 09:53 AM
 
454 posts, read 369,696 times
Reputation: 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by LookingtoLeave View Post
Majority of the students all had a 4.0 or at least around a 3.8. This is not very common at TU or even St. Mary's for that matter. One of my ex-classmates who was amazingly bright had a mere 3.4 (keeping in mind our grading scale is different.) Anyways, I asked my co-worker, "What, do they just hand out A's at UTSA like Halloween candy?" Believe it or not, he said yes and I have heard this many times before. Now granted, your GPA looks phenomenal, but to me it doesn't hold as much weight if the curriculum isn't as rigorous. Who knows, I could be totally off. I have after all heard of the same problem at Harvard.
I don't know about Harvard but Yale inflates grades - an 'average' grade on the curve is a B. There are a plethora of As in each class. Compare my state school where an average was a C. Big difference. I had a major argument with a prof in a class I was TA'ing (this was a graduate course for medical and public health students). The medical student had completely failed the exam. The prof insisted I give him more points on certain questions so he could pass because "we can't have someone fail." ARGHHH. I won that argument only because enough people chimed in. I am sure that was not an isolated incident.

I don't put any stock in GPAs *at all* when hiring someone, even when weeding out applications. I consider if they have a degree, and if so what it's in, what courses they took, and if sufficiently interesting will ask them about that in the interview process.
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Old 01-25-2008, 10:57 AM
 
Location: Beautiful New England
2,412 posts, read 6,446,927 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chakapu View Post
I don't know about Harvard but Yale inflates grades - an 'average' grade on the curve is a B.
Grade inflation ins VERY common in the Ivies and, overall, varies highly from school to school, even department to department. This is why standardized testing is so important--a 4.0 at Taco Tech may not be the same as a 4.0 at Wahoo U. But scores on the GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT, etc. are completely comparable.

I think GPA is best understood as a proxy indicator of student willingness/ability to jump through the hoops and do the work of college (study for exams, do the readings, turn in papers on time, attend class, etc.). GPA is much less significant in predicting intelligence, intellectual horsepower, etc. Most students have the brain power to do reasonably well at the vast majority of universities in the U.S. However, too many students often lack the academic focus and work ethic to achieve high GPAs.
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Old 01-25-2008, 12:54 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
957 posts, read 3,089,364 times
Reputation: 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by professorsenator View Post
Grade inflation ins VERY common in the Ivies and, overall, varies highly from school to school, even department to department. This is why standardized testing is so important--a 4.0 at Taco Tech may not be the same as a 4.0 at Wahoo U. But scores on the GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT, etc. are completely comparable.

I think GPA is best understood as a proxy indicator of student willingness/ability to jump through the hoops and do the work of college (study for exams, do the readings, turn in papers on time, attend class, etc.). GPA is much less significant in predicting intelligence, intellectual horsepower, etc. Most students have the brain power to do reasonably well at the vast majority of universities in the U.S. However, too many students often lack the academic focus and work ethic to achieve high GPAs.
Funny you bring up the GRE, GMAT, etc. thing. I have heard some places are trying to get rid of it because it's not a good indicator of academic intelligence-although you have a great point with the inflation and all. The problem many have with it, myself included, is you're given a lot of questions that are to be answered in a little time period-which creates a lot of pressure. I know they're trying to weed out people so to speak who can't handle it, but some people are just faster than others, and that doesn't necessarily mean smarter. I will go out on a limb and admit I totally bombed the GMAT, but my grades in grad school have been higher than ever before. I just may have to study a little more than someone else.
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Old 01-26-2008, 09:37 AM
 
Location: Beautiful New England
2,412 posts, read 6,446,927 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LookingtoLeave View Post
The problem many have with it, myself included, is you're given a lot of questions that are to be answered in a little time period-which creates a lot of pressure. I know they're trying to weed out people so to speak who can't handle it, but some people are just faster than others, and that doesn't necessarily mean smarter.
But that's the point of a standardized exam: to idenify the best thinkers in a competititve context. The time limit imposes competition.
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Old 01-26-2008, 01:40 PM
 
190 posts, read 165,076 times
Reputation: 45
This is an extremely stimulating discussion. I'd echo the sentiments of others in regards to the local prestige of Trinity - it is the best institution of higher education in San Antonio. However, like SMU, Trinity's distinction is regional - that is, ask someone on the East coast or Midwest about either school, and you'll more than likely be met with a blank stare.

Interestingly, SMU is one of a select number of institutions with annual endowments in excess of a billion dollars, a distinction Trinity doesn't share. I'm not familiar with the rankings of SMU, but from my experience, it generally is deemed more distinguished than Trinity, and arguably moreso than any other private university in Texas.

Also, I'd have to agree that UT Austin is more of a recognized and respected institution of higher learning compared to Trinity.
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Old 01-26-2008, 02:06 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
957 posts, read 3,089,364 times
Reputation: 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by infinity & beyond View Post
Interestingly, SMU is one of a select number of institutions with annual endowments in excess of a billion dollars, a distinction Trinity doesn't share. I'm not familiar with the rankings of SMU, but from my experience, it generally is deemed more distinguished than Trinity, and arguably moreso than any other private university in Texas.

Also, I'd have to agree that UT Austin is more of a recognized and respected institution of higher learning compared to Trinity.
As far as SMU is concerned, I hear quite the contrary and UT Austin is up for debate unless you're talking about their grad school which blows the competition away, but to each their own.
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Old 01-26-2008, 02:08 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
957 posts, read 3,089,364 times
Reputation: 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by professorsenator View Post
But that's the point of a standardized exam: to idenify the best thinkers in a competititve context. The time limit imposes competition.
The whole reason schools administer the standardized exam is b/c it is an "indicator as to the success of someone in grad school." I have proven them wrong! My GPA is grad school is that of people who did great on the exam if not higher. This is why many schools think it's irrelevant and don't administer it.
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Old 01-26-2008, 08:57 PM
 
81 posts, read 197,545 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by infinity & beyond View Post
This is an extremely stimulating discussion. I'd echo the sentiments of others in regards to the local prestige of Trinity - it is the best institution of higher education in San Antonio. However, like SMU, Trinity's distinction is regional - that is, ask someone on the East coast or Midwest about either school, and you'll more than likely be met with a blank stare.

Interestingly, SMU is one of a select number of institutions with annual endowments in excess of a billion dollars, a distinction Trinity doesn't share. I'm not familiar with the rankings of SMU, but from my experience, it generally is deemed more distinguished than Trinity, and arguably moreso than any other private university in Texas.

Also, I'd have to agree that UT Austin is more of a recognized and respected institution of higher learning compared to Trinity.
The Trinity endowment is over 800k. Not bad for 2.5k students.

It depends on what you consider distinguished.

SMU is ranked 67 nationally.
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Old 01-27-2008, 11:03 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC & San Antonio, TX
790 posts, read 3,613,746 times
Reputation: 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by infinity & beyond View Post
Interestingly, SMU is one of a select number of institutions with annual endowments in excess of a billion dollars, a distinction Trinity doesn't share.
Quote:
Originally Posted by schertz1 View Post
The Trinity endowment is over 800k. Not bad for 2.5k students.
Trinity's endowment is projected to reach $1 billion by late 2009 or early 2010... the school is in the middle of a capital campaign that has raised over $150mm for the endowment in the last 18-24 months. The Campaign for Trinity University
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