How to Explain Low CGPA in a Personal Statement

How to Explain Low CGPA in a Personal Statement

Statement of purpose is an admission essay written by a forthcoming student applying to a college or university. It tells more about the student, the reason for choosing that course, and how it applied to his or her future.

In every personal statement, there are key elements the admission committees lookout for. They are academic trajectory skills, enthusiasm and commitment, leadership, teamwork, communication, and in-depth research of the course of study. 

Note that, the personal statement is not an avenue to showcase diverse skills rather reflect an individual who will fit into the academic community. However, the academic history of the students matters as it helps to determine the intellectual strength of the students.

There are several schools of thought about explaining a low CGPA or not. Here, we will illustrate to you how to explain a low CGPA in a personal statement.

Tips to Write a Unique Personal Statement

The admission committee is conversant with reviewing several applications daily and is familiar with certain phrases. With high competition in University admission, a unique personal statement gives you an edge over others. More so, for a student with a low CGPA, here are a few tips to consider when writing:

  • Avoid waffling, the use of cliches, and making it interesting to read.
  • Make it relevant and avoid jargon.
  • Create a balance between your academics and extracurricular activities.
  • Use clear and concise language.
  • Describe your passion.
  • Put down your words and sentences in an active voice. 
  • Do thorough research about the university.
  • Lastly, be sure to explain the details of your gap likewise a low CGPA.

Also read: UK University Personal Statement Buzzwords to Avoid

Attention-Grabbing Words to Use in Personal Statement

  1. Apt
  2. Altered
  3. Modified
  4. Conveyed 
  5. Articulated
  6. Disseminated 
  7. Communicated
  8. Aimed
  9. Cast
  10. Computed
  11. Conceptualized
  12. Conducted
  13. Constructed
  14. Created
  15. Expressed
  16. Demonstrated
  17. Designed
  18. Determined
  19. Earned
  20. Enhanced
  21. Evaluated
  22. Found
  23. Gathered
  24. Handled
  25. Accumulated
  26. Summoned
  27. Amassed 
  28. Identified
  29. Implemented
  30. Interweave
  31. Conveyed
  32. Incorporated
  33. Influenced
  34. Innovated
  35. Introduced
  36. Mustered 
  37. Joined
  38. Learned
  39. Led
  40. Monitored
  41. Organized
  42. Oversaw
  43. Participated
  44. Performed
  45. Placed
  46. Posted
  47. Proficient
  48. Projected
  49. Proposed
  50. Pursue
  51. Reorganized
  52. Recoup
  53. Review
  54. Presided
  55. Save
  56. Salvage
  57. Shaped
  58. Simplified
  59. Sorted
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How to Explain Low CGPA in a Personal Statement.

Having a low CGPA is not a barrier to admission. Meanwhile, it is a criterion used by the admission committee to screen-out applications. Regardless of this, be true to yourself and do not formulate a false reason to back up your low CGPA.

Moreover, there are ways to justify a low CGPA irrespective of the point.

Step 1: 

Justify succinctly why you had a low CGPA to boost your chances of being admitted. Your CGPA will reflect on your transcript which will give the committee a perspective of your intellectual ability. 

“My father was hospitalized in my 300 level first semester for his chemotherapy. Despite all my family’s attempts by downsizing in accommodation and taking a loan, he died during my 300 level second semester exam.

Since then, my retired mother has been struggling to pay our school fees and I had to take a part-time job”.

Another example is, 

” Truthfully, the lackadaisical attitude I had in my first and second year took an intense toll on my undergraduate academic journey. Along the line, the field trips ignited my passion for Geology which was too late to reflect on my grades”. 

Step 2:

Furthermore, concisely write why you’re now a better fit for admission. This can be a graduate record examination (GRE), a course you did, or a professional exam. The essence of this is for the committee to perceive you as a high-caliber student.

“Of course, my CGPA has disqualified me from being admitted into…… university for my….. program. However, my GRE score (301), IELTS grade (8.5/9.0), and volunteering roles are a fascinating introspection of my abilities and burning desire to continually improve”.


“It’s indisputable that my CGPA does not fit to be admitted into ….. university for my…. 

Over time, I’ve been able to ace my final year project with a distinction, my GRE score (300), and research during my post-graduate diploma are currently the accurate reflection of my capacities”. 

Step 3: 

Dwell more on your skills, achievement, and work experience. Undoubtedly, your statement should contain practical instances of your skill sets, particularly for a low CGPA. Note that the admission committee is not only interested in your skills rather how to get them. 

“Despite the fuss in my low CGPA,  I am exceptionally industrious with a swift ability to meet deadlines at work. Thus, I think I would be able to put my skills to an ultimate use in this program.”

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Step 4: 

Employ a “lesson learned approach”. When you have a clause in your application, it’s best to highlight the lessons it taught you. 

Reach out to a professional for cross-checking. Having a professional review of your low CGPA personal statement is key to your admission. Therefore, reach out to fasthire today to get your professionally written low cgpa personal statement. 

In contrast, some universities allow students an appendix to elucidate more about themselves. The good news is that you can leverage this platform to relay your reasons which must be genuine. Nevertheless, research the university if that luxury is allowed or not and ensure to keep your intentions brief but concise. 

Another way to go about justifying your low CGPA is to solicit help from the Professor or the lecturer that wrote your recommendation letter. He or she will be in a better position to allege that your results don’t interpret your capabilities and that you’re propelled in your field of study. They can communicate these things and you’ll be amazed by the impact it will cause. Hence, Be sure to be in acquaintance with your referee and liaise with them to write an excellent recommendation letter for you.

In the process of indicating all these explanations, be cautious that you are respectful, precise, rational, and well understood. Otherwise, the purpose of the work won’t be achieved and it might backfire against your low CGPA. 

Conclusion: How to Explain a Low CGPA in a Personal Statement

Remember, the admission committee is human and compassionate thereby making it necessary to explain your low CGPA to qualify for admission. While explaining, ensure you don’t exaggerate, be true to yourself.

Add value to yourself by taking professional examinations to back up your improvement. 

I wish you the best!

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