You are here

When to Use Your Major GPA

If you are like most students, you know your cumulative GPA.  If it is high, you’re probably satisfied with it and will willingly supply it to any recruiter who asks.  If it is not as high as you'd like, and a recruiter brings it up, it can potentially create some uncomfortable moments, even causing you to break out in an audible sweat.  You start silently yelling at yourself for not taking your history classes more seriously. 

All is not lost.  If you have worked hard in your engineering classes, with strong grades reflecting that hard work, then it is likely that your major GPA is significantly higher than your cumulative GPA.  You can calculate your major GPA, and present it to a recruiter with confidence.  (But be sure to present it as your major GPA; it is never okay to mislead or lie to a recruiter.) 

Well, that’s great for a student who has A’s in their engineering classes and B’s (or lower) in their general education classes.  But what about other scenarios?  You might have a major GPA and cumulative GPA that are very close to one another, or you might have a decent cumulative GPA but it’s being brought down by a less than stellar major GPA.  Is it necessary to know, or state, your major GPA?  Is it helpful, or harmful?  Simply put, it's best to evaluate on a case-by-case basis.  Some recruiters see a student resume listing only a major GPA and wonder if the student is trying to hide something (a history grade, perhaps?).  Other recruiters see a student resume listing only a major GPA and are happy to know that the candidate has strong engineering skills.

To know what is optimal for your specific case, make an appointment with ECS to see a Career Advisor.  Your advisor will be able to work with you and determine what is right for your specific need.

In the meantime, if you are simply interested in knowing where you stand, you can always go to BuckeyeLink and find your major GPA.  Follow these steps for a quick look.

Calculating your engineering major GPA through Buckeyelink:

  • Log in to Student Center, and in the right sidebar find and choose “degree audit”
  • In the Self Service window, choose “request audit”
  • Confirm that your major is in “run current program”, scroll to the bottom and choose “run audit”   (Note: if your major is not in “run current program”, choose “run selected program” and complete the fields)
  • After the audit runs, choose “view audit”
  • Find the line item labeled “Standards of Academic Performance” and click the arrow to the left of it
  • Your Major GPA will be listed at the bottom of this field

If you think that your Major GPA seems off, please contact your Academic Advisor.  They will be able to help you manually determine your major GPA.

“Play to your strengths."
"I haven’t got any," said Harry, before he could stop himself.
"Excuse me," growled Moody, "you’ve got strengths if I say you’ve got them. Think now. What are you best at?” 

-J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

About the author

Laura Pizoli

Laura Pizoli is the Information Associate at Engineering Career Services.