Dear Mentor:

Can I get an MS in EE with my GRE?

I have completed my bachelors in Engineering in Electronics and have obtained a RANK in the University with GPA of 3.95. My GRE [Graduate Record Exam] score is 1700 and TOEFL [Test of English as a Foreign Language] score is 283. I would like to know whether I' will be able to do my Master's in Electrical engineering in the US with these scores. Do I have to retake the GRE? I want to know whether I will be in a position to get an aid. I would like to get rankings of the schools that provide masters in EE (VLSI).

Engineering Graduate, Tamilnadu, India

Dear Engineering Graduate:

You academic performance with a GPA of 3.95 is impressive indeed; however, the assessment of quantitative GPA is subjective, which takes into account the quality and rigor of your program. For example, a GPA of 3.00 from an IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) may be considered far superior to 3.75 from a lessor-known institution.

You GRE score of 1700 out of 2400 is below the mean score of approximately 1800 for engineering students, according to the GRE Score Interpretation Guide; that is, your GRE performance is below-average. It would be challenging for you to obtain admission in a Master's program in the US, let alone financial aid. You should re-take the GRE only if you believe you can significantly improve your score through hard work. As you may know, the GRE score is not a random outcome. Re-taking the test would not improve your score substantially, unless your abilities improved substantially. The GRE score does not go up only, it can in fact go down.

The TOEFL score is used to assess your proficiency in the English language. You must meet a certain threshold, set by your prospective college, to satisfy the requirement. The amount by which you exceed the threshold is irrelevant. Your TOEFL score is good.

College rankings are done at either the college level or faculty level, and rarely at the program level. You will not find rankings for a specialization within a program, such as VLSI (Very Large Scale Integration). You can find the sources for Rankings of Engineering Colleges in the US in the iMahal Education Channel. The List of Engineering Colleges in the US is also available in the iMahal Education Channel.

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