Why did you score low in academics?

Questions about College Grades

HR Interviewers often ask candidates questions about their college grades, including questions like “Why did you score low in academics?” or “Why are your grades so low?”. It is important to answer these questions properly as giving a wrong answer can jeopardize your interview. On this page you will find the guidelines to answer questions about grades.

Page Highlights:

  • Why: “Why did you score low in academics,” asked?
  • How to answer: Questions about College Grades.
  • Best Possible Answers for: “Why did you score low in academics?”
How were your marks in college

Why: “Why did you score low in academics,” asked?

It is a standard practice to ask interviewing candidates about their grades and often HR Interviewers ask the candidates to share about their college experience and grades. However, if a candidate has average marks or below average marks, then the interviewer might specifically investigate the reason for the same. 

The reason for doing so is to know why the candidate faced issues and had a decline in their marks. There can be many reasons private and professional due to which a candidate can get low marks, and the interviewer asks this question to know whether the same reasons will affect the candidate’s performance in the future (especially in the company).

How to answer: Questions about College Grades?

This is a tricky interview question as the interviewer uses questions like these to get to know more about a candidate’s work ethic along with their information perceiving and learning skills. Therefore it is important to choose the words carefully and phrase the sentences such that it brings out the best aspects of the candidate regardless of their academic score.

Note:- In this question having low or bad grades is not the concern, as long as the candidate fulfills the eligibility criteria bad grades will not be an issue in hiring. The interviewer’s intent for asking this question is just to know the reason for the candidate’s bad grades and how the candidate made up for it.

Best Possible Answers for: “Why did you score low in academics?”

Refer the sample answers given below.

Answer 1:

As seen, I got an average grades in college, but I believe my presence in other areas of my college life demonstrates my accomplishments further. Like I was an active member of the tech club of my college and stood 1st and 2nd in Robotics in consecutive years. So my efforts have focused on honing realistic skills.

  • As seen, I got average grades in college, but I believe my presence in other areas of my college life demonstrates my accomplishments further. Like I was an active member of the tech club of my college and stood 1st and 2nd in Robotics in consecutive years. So my efforts have focused on honing realistic skills.

Answer 2:

My grades do not adequately reflect my academic success in college. Not that I earned mediocre marks, but because it was during my fieldwork and internships that I excelled academically. If you are interested I can tell you about my career experiences.

  • My grades do not adequately reflect my academic success in college. Not that I earned mediocre marks, but because it was during my fieldwork and internships that I excelled academically. If you are interested I can tell you about my career experiences.

Answer 3:

My 12th grade marks and the first two years of my B.Tech marks seem to be abysmal. When I was in 12th grade, there was a family problem (which I won’t discuss). I could not pay attention in the 1st 2-3 semesters of Engineering as I lost my father, and was having financial issues and thus started to do some part time jobs to help my mother.

  • My 12th grade marks and the first two years of my B.Tech marks seem to be abysmal. When I was in 12th grade, there was a family problem (which I won’t discuss). I could not pay attention in the 1st 2-3 semesters of Engineering as I lost my father, and was having financial issues and thus started to do some part time jobs to help my mother.

Answer 4:

Sir, I was a nerdy student in school.  When I first arrived at the hostel, I made a lot of friends. I began to learn how to get along with others. I began to play football more regularly. In cultural functions, I won debate and drama contests. I took on the challenge of organizing activities. By doing all of these things, I was able to concentrate less on my exams. Nonetheless, I’ve learned how to cope with it in the future whenever I step outside of my comfort zone.

  • Sir, I was a nerdy student in school.  When I first arrived at the hostel, I made a lot of friends. I began to learn how to get along with others. I began to play football more regularly. In cultural functions, I won debate and drama contests. I took on the challenge of organizing activities. By doing all of these things, I was able to concentrate less on my exams. Nonetheless, I’ve learned how to cope with it in the future whenever I step outside of my comfort zone.

Answer 5:

Throughout my B.Tech career, I completed 4-5 internships and entered in several inter college coding contests, earning many awards for the institution.

  • Throughout my B.Tech career, I completed 4-5 internships and entered in several inter college coding contests, earning many awards for the institution.

Answer 6:

Sir/Madame It’s just about practicality and architecture. You won’t get anywhere with bookish skills. Those students may excel at bookish concepts in any subject, but I am the one with in-depth knowledge of what I have personally learned and accomplished. During my summer training and project work, I concentrated more on learning skills than on raising my exam grades, and I like to learn by doing

  • Sir/Madame It’s just about practicality and architecture. You won’t get anywhere with bookish skills. Those students may excel at bookish concepts in any subject, but I am the one with in-depth knowledge of what I have personally learned and accomplished. During my summer training and project work, I concentrated more on learning skills than on raising my exam grades, and I like to learn by doing

Answer 7:

Sir/Madame I’ve always put my passion first, doing what I enjoy, and I’m back for the same cause after qualifying for four rounds, when some of the hyped 80% students have been denied even after being given the opportunity to appear for interviews directly. I assume that when you have a deep desire to excel, success results inevitably, and I guess I have all of these qualities.

  • Sir/Madame I’ve always put my passion first, doing what I enjoy, and I’m back for the same cause after qualifying for four rounds, when some of the hyped 80% students have been denied even after being given the opportunity to appear for interviews directly. I assume that when you have a deep desire to excel, success results inevitably, and I guess I have all of these qualities.

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FAQs on Why did you score low in academics?

Question: Should I blame my parents for my low grades?

Answer:

It is advisable not to shift the blame to anyone else. Even if it is your parents, do not blame them for your low grades. Doing so will project a weak character who has no sense of responsibility.

Question: Can I cite college activities as a reason?

Answer:

You can tell so, but you have to give examples to back your claim. 

For example if you tell the interviewer that you were more active in sports and therefore neglected studies, then mention which competitions and tournaments you took part in and how you represented your school/college in various events.