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Thread: I got a low grade in Calculus II. What should I do now?

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    I got a low grade in Calculus II. What should I do now?

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    I'm a senior economics theory and policy major at a small private liberal arts college. My plan for after graduation was to go to Grad school for economics, but I feel as though that's been jeopardized by my recent failure to succeed in calculus II. I haven't received my final grade yet, but I can only imagine it will be in the the range of D+ to C (hopefully C). What should I do now?

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    TestMagic Guru Moderator
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    Re: I got a low grade in Calculus II. What should I do now?

    Only remedy is an A in Calc 3.

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    An Urch Guru Pundit Swami Sage
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    Re: I got a low grade in Calculus II. What should I do now?

    You wouldn't have been competitive for PhD admissions, in the near future, even if you received an A.

    The typical straight-to-PhD candidate takes calculus II in high school or their freshman year. If you didn't have calculus II until your senior year, it also means you don't have calculus-based probability or econometrics courses until now, not to mention a real game theory course. There are almost no PhD programs in the U.S. that will admit such candidates. The actual grade you are receiving in calculus is almost a secondary concern.

    Standard advice for people in your situation:

    (i) invest some time to actually learn about what economics PhDs are, the level of competition in its applications, and other degree programs that may offer you similar opportunities for the kind of work you want to do. Chances are, you will come to the conclusion that another degree program or career is suitable for your interests and background. This forum has a ton of resources, including the stickied threads.

    (ii) if you are both informed and certain about your plan for PhD econ applications after learning about the process, then you should be prepared to take several additional years to prepare for your application. 2 additional years of math and/or rigorous econ coursework, and 1 year of serious research experience would be ideal in your situation.

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