Cellar-door wrote: iamgeorgebush wrote: Cellar-door wrote:
I'd love to see the methodology and data on that study.
For example, as recently as this year the median at Harvard (10th hardest by their methodology) is an A- and the most commonly awarded grade is an A. http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2013/ ... on-mode-a/
Yale is also on that list, and from the same article, apparently from 2010-2012 62% of all grades given out were A- or better.
Edit- Harvard actually had to cap the number of straight As that professors could give out at 35% for regular classes and 55% for independent studies and the number of students receiving latin honors was capped at 60% after they were somewhat embarrassed by an article in the Boston Globe that 91% of one year's graduating class graduated with Honors.
Considering that most people who go to Harvard and Yale had straight A's during high school, is it really that surprising that they continue to get A's in college? If you were to take an average Harvard or Yale student and put her at the typical state school, I bet she'd do even better than at Harvard. Just look at the OP, who transferred from a tough LAC to a state school and is now doing much much better.
Sure this could be true, but Princeton for example has students with as good or better grades in high school and has a much lower median GPA than Yale or Harvard for the most recent years available. Obviously either the study had REALLY old data (like 20 years) or their methodology was crazy as shit.
This is true, there are definitely differences among top schools. Princeton might have higher grading standards than Yale, which might have higher grading standards than Brown. Still doesn't change the big picture, though, which is that on average, the quality of those schools' students probably accounts for their higher grades more than grade inflation does.
Moneytrees wrote: iamgeorgebush wrote:
hcrimson2014 wrote:To echo the above poster, CAL, supposedly the most prestigious UC campus, had a GPA median at 3.20, whereas the GPA median for UCSD was something like 3.01 while Harvard college, the YLS of undergrad education, actually boasted a gpa median close to 3.5. Many less prestigious institutions actually implement harder curves than the more renowned ones. So you need to do the necessary research, transferring from Harvard to Duke probably won't make an impact on your grades.
The above argument is flawed because...
The students are Harvard, etc.
are of a higher caliber than the students at UCSD, etc., so of course they're going to get better grades. You think a Harvard student with a 3.4 or a UC Berkeley student with a 3.2 would get a 3.0 at UCSD?
If you think the intellectual difference between a student at UCSD and Harvard is huge, you are deluding yourself. UCSD has several better ranked programs than Harvard. It's a major research university, and it's classes are really competitive. UCSD's engineering school (Jacobs) and Neuroscience programs are arguably the best in the country. It could very well be the case that a student with a 3.5 at Harvard would get a 3.1 in certain majors at UCSD.
People like you give schools like Harvard a bad name by making the above referenced claim. It's Harvard, we get it- it's the best school in the nation. But that doesn't mean you don't also have grade inflation.
A few things:
(1) Yes, UCSD is an excellent research university, and perhaps some of its programs are more difficult than those of top schools like Harvard. That's a good thing to recognize. But we're talking overall. Obviously if you cherry-pick and compare the toughest program at UCSD to the easiest program at Harvard, that UCSD program will probably be harder. But the question more relevant to both the OP and law school admissions is about the overall difficulty of each school's academic program.
(2) UCSD might have a couple graduate programs that are higher-ranked than Harvard's (as determined by the quality/volume of research), but that doesn't mean UCSD's undergraduate academic program is more difficult than Harvard's. Quality/volume of significant research ≠ difficulty of undergraduate academic program. If there were a strong connection, then you'd expect top LACs (which produce very little research) to be pieces of cake compared to research universities, but that's obviously not the case. Research quality/volume as a metric for measuring difficulty of undergraduate classes is a flame.
Not sure why we were discussing UCSD anyway, since it is a very good school. Would be better to look at a school like San Diego State. That would be more to the point of the OP: Ivies, top LACs, etc. tend to be more difficult than random state schools like ASU. As you rightly pointed out, UCSD is not a random state school; it is actually a quite venerable institution.