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Should I Put My GPA On My Resume?

August 22nd, 2008 · 8 Comments

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Monday’s post about the interview questions Microsoft and Google will hit you with sort of caught my fancy. Just for fun, I started investigating the process of getting hired at high tech companies. I figured, companies like these are on the cutting edge, and they can basically pick and chose who they hire. The workers come to them.

So, I thought that learning a bit more about their processes might help me learn more about where hiring processes are headed in the 21st century. Might have a post on this soon.

For now, though, there’s one thing I can say definitively: in the 21st century, progressive companies are very open about their hiring processes. Want to get a job at Microsoft? Shoot, they have entire websites and page after page posted to give you info on the process. If you have the interest and the time, you can browse around the web and learn just about anything you could want to know about working for Mr. Balmer.

And this is a roundabout way of getting to the point of this post.

On the Microsoft JobsBlog, I found an interesting post about GPAs on resumes. This is obviously a big deal for recent grads and students.

In short: should you put your GPA on your resume? Do GPAs even matter, or is the degree the only important thing? And perhaps most important: can a bad GPA hurt your chances of getting hired?

The post has 3 good rules of thumb that I’ll summarize here:

  1. If your GPA is below a 3.0… do NOT put it on your resume.
  2. If you did really well in your major but not in your additional classes, then go ahead and put your MAJOR GPA on your resume.
  3. Experience is more important than GPA.

I’ll let your click through to the article to read the details.

As for my own summation: Most companies don’t care about the GPA, even if you’re freshly out of school. They’re more interested in the degree achieved and the coursework you were exposed to.

Microsoft, however, is one of those companies that does care. Very much. I’ve read in several places that GPA is one of the first questions they ask, even if you’ve been out of college for 20 years!

And for all recent grads, you can get great resume writing advice for those entering the workforce from a professional resume service.

Related posts:

  1. Resume Tip- 4 Quick Ways To Make Your Resume Stand Out
  2. What A Resume Is For- If You Don’t Understand This, You Won’t Land A Job
  3. Don’t Include These Skills On Your Resume
  4. Resume Help – Why It’s Necessary, And Where To Get It
  5. Ask Brian- Best Resume Tip
  6. The Best Resume Writing Tip

Tags: Interns · Resumes

  • Scott

    I have MY GPA on my resume!!! I feel I earned the grade that I recieved (3.85) and you can bet your rear that I am going to place it front and center!

    I would suggest that you don’t post it if it is below a 3.0 … or brag that you were an MBA graduate ‘C’ student … or graduated 6th from the bottom of your graduating class like some well known persons openly and boastfully in the public arena! I wouldn’t call a ‘badge of honor!’ But then maybe they don’t know better.

  • fixedgear

    When I got hired by Uncle Sam 18 years ago they were looking for ‘outstanding scholars’ (heh). Not only was it on my resume but I had to provide an official transcript that demonstrated that it was true. Good rules of thumb, though.

  • Mark

    I know some companies use GPA as a preliminary gate. It is usually companies that have piles of resumes anyway, so they need some way of cutting the pile down, and GPA is a quick way of doing that.

  • Eric

    I absolutely agree, and I tell people to put honor societies on there under an “honors” or “achievements” section. Experience is definitely more important in almost every instance, but you never know what either a strong GPA or honors society could get you.

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  • Katina Ross


    I did not get to read the rest of your comment but the work received Iis spelled wrong and I know we all make mistakes but that doesn’t look good since you are talking about a GPA.

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