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10 Graduate Schools That Accept a Low GPA Under 2.0 or 2.5

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Updated: November 9, 2023, Reading time: 11 minutes

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Pursuing higher education can be tough if you have a low Grade Point Average (GPA) in your undergraduate degree or your past graduate-level courses, considering that prestigious graduate schools across the country typically require applicants to have a GPA of 3.0 (or B grade) on a 4.0 scale.

Fortunately, there are a few Universities and graduate degree programs that accept students with a low GPA of at least 2.0 (or C grade) as part of the admission requirements.


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California University of Management and Sciences

California University of Management and Sciences

California University of Management and Sciences offers its graduate programs to applicants who hold a related Bachelor’s degree with a GPA of at least 2.0. Currently, CALUMS offers two traditional, on-campus Master’s degree programs, namely:

Applicants who do not hold a Bachelor’s degree related to the Master’s program they’re applying for will have to attend program prerequisite courses as determined by the Head of Academics.

Some of the other admission requirements include:

Founded in 1998, CALUMS is a higher education institution with the goal of providing affordable, high-quality education combined with Christian values.

The accreditation of CALUMS to offer graduate programs at the master’s degree level is Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS)-authorized.


Merit University

Merit University

California-based Merit University offers the Master of Science in Management degree and the Master of Business Administration program to applicants who have an overall GPA of at least 2.0 or better in their bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution. These graduate programs are delivered in a traditional, face-to-face learning format.

Aside from the GPA requirements with the transcript as evidence, Merit’s admission policies also necessitate the following from the applicants:

For admission consideration purposes, the applicants to the graduate degree program may also submit a Statement of Purpose with a minimum of 250 words as well as a Letter of Recommendation from academic or professional referees.

Merit University is a private nonprofit institution that obtained approval from California’s Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education in 2013 to offer its Master of Business Administration degree program. The institution aims to provide domestic and international students with budget-friendly higher education that integrates professionalism and academics with community building and social development.

The Council for Higher Education Accreditation also acknowledges Merit University as a degree-granting institution for higher education.


Underwood University

Underwood University

With campuses in Georgia and California, Underwood University offers a variety of graduate degree programs to applicants with at least a GPA of 2.0 on their undergraduate degree completed from an accredited institution of higher education.

Some of the post-baccalaureate programs that the University offers include:

The University also offers Doctor of Business Administration and PhD in Intercultural Global Leadership degree programs.

Some of the University’s courses are available in online learning formats. In addition, the University’s traditional, in-person programs are also offered through its Distance Education platform.

Other admission requirements include the following:

As a learning institution offering Christ-centered education, Underwood University aims not just to pass knowledge to its students but also to foster a sense of social responsibility and the passion for leveraging one’s education for a positive impact.

The Transnational Association of Christian Colleges & Schools or TRACS has acknowledged the accreditation status of the University as a Category III institution, which is a TRACS classification awarded to schools offering Master’s degrees. 


American InterContinental University

American InterContinental University

Headquartered in Arizona, American InterContinental University (AIU) offers a variety of online Master’s degree programs in the fields of Business, Criminal Justice, Design, Education, Healthcare Management and Information Technology through its AIU Online platform.

Interested applicants will need to have a GPA of at least 2.0 on their undergraduate degree, which should be obtained from either an institution accredited by a US Department of Education-recognized accrediting agency or a globally recognized international school of higher education.

Some of the University’s online Master’s degree programs are also available in one or both of its other physical campuses, such as:

The University’s Master of Education degree program currently has a full accreditation status approved by the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation or AAQEP. Furthermore, its Business programs have received an Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs approval.

The American InterContinental University System, which AIU is a part of, also has institutional accreditation approved by the Higher Learning Commission or HLC. 


Full Sail University

Full Sail University

The graduate programs offered by Full Sail University are available to applicants with a transfer academic average or GPA of at least 2.0, except for the Master’s degree programs in Game Design and Computer Science, which require a 2.5 GPA or transfer academic average.

The University has a variety of Master’s degree programs available in online learning format, some of which are also available on its campus in Winter Park, Florida. These graduate programs include the following:

Full Sail University has the following qualifications to offer graduate programs:

The University was founded in 1979 initially as a workshop for audio recording in Ohio. It relocated to its current location in Central Florida in 1989 and has evolved as an institution offering degrees at all levels specializing in the constantly changing fields of emerging technologies and entertainment media.


Liberty University

Liberty University

Virginia-based Liberty University offers a massive assortment of Master’s degree programs delivered in online, on-campus, or both learning formats. Many of these programs accept applicants with at least a 2.0 GPA on the official transcripts of their Bachelor’s degree.

More specifically, Liberty’s degree programs that accept a low GPA of 2.0 for admission in good standing include the following:

Some of Liberty’s degree programs also accept applicants with a 2.0 GPA but on Academic Caution admission status. These programs include the following:

Liberty University awards degrees, including at Master’s and Doctoral levels, as authorized by the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Commission on Colleges, as well as the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Many of the University’s graduate programs have also obtained accreditation from relevant organizations, including the following:


University of Illinois Springfield

University of Illinois Springfield

Any applicant who wants to attend a graduate degree program at the University of Illinois Springfield (UIS) with a low GPA of between 2.0 and 2.49 may only be able to enroll in the MS in Human Resource Management (HRM) program. The admission is even granted on a case-by-case basis. The applicant should also have at least two years of considerable experience in a field relevant to human resources.

On the other hand, the University has specified in its 2023-2024 Catalog that the Master in Business Administration and Master in Public Administration degree programs accept applicants with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5.

Currently, the University states it may grant students admission to graduate study if they earned a baccalaureate degree with a GPA of 2.5 at the minimum, considering all other admission requirements are satisfied. According to its catalog, the following degree programs have “no additional admission requirements” other than the University’s general criteria:

The University’s MS Data Analytics program, while not specifically requiring a minimum GPA, will require students to submit a personal and academic statement discussing proof of their ability to perform at a high academic level.

UIS holds active accreditation status with the HLC that authorizes it to grant degrees. The following organizations and agencies also grant accreditation to many of the University’s programs and departments:


University of Dallas

University of Dallas - Satish and Yasmin Gupta College of Business

As part of a corporate partnership, the employees of Bank of America, as well as their spouses and children, may enroll in any of the graduate business degree programs that the University of Dallas – Satish & Yasmin Gupta College of Business offers. They can only do so if they completed a Bachelor’s degree program with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0. 

These graduate programs include the following:

Admission requirements also include a GPA of at least 3.0 in any graduate-level course completed. No GMAT is required to be eligible for the Master’s programs.

The University’s Satish & Yasmin Gupta College of Business holds an active accreditation status with the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.


Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University accepts students to its online graduate programs on a provisional admission status if they have an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.0 unless specifically noted by the program to be otherwise. The University requires students to have at least a 2.75 GPA score to be admitted with good standing.

SNHU offers a wide range of online Master’s degree programs, including the following:

SNHU is authorized to award degrees, including at the master’s level, as approved by New Hampshire’s Higher Education Commission and the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).

The University also possesses programmatic accreditations from the following organizations for its graduate programs:


Eastern Kentucky University

Eastern Kentucky University

It can be tough for students with a low GPA score in their Bachelor’s degree to attend a degree program offered by Eastern Kentucky University, as the standard minimum GPA requirement for admission is typically around 2.75 to 3.0. However, those with at least an undergraduate GPA of 2.5 may be eligible for the following programs:

A GPA of 2.5 scores may also qualify applicants for provisional admission consideration for the Master of Public Health program, which is offered in either on-campus or online learning formats. The full admission status requires a cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0. This Master’s degree program is approved by the following agencies:

The University is authorized to award degrees, including at Master’s and Doctorate levels, as approved by SACSCOC.

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