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The difference between a weighted and unweighted GPA

Wednesday, December 28, 2011
While your academic performance in high school definitely plays a role in the admissions process, whether or not you get accepted to a college will not hinge on your grades alone.

According to, a college planning Web site, college admissions officers will notice if you earned straight A's because you took easier classes and make their decision accordingly.

As some high school classes are harder than others, a student’s grade point average (GPA) does not always take into account how challenging their course load is. Consequently, many high schools provide colleges with what are known as weighted and unweighted GPAs.

On the blog Great College Advice, college insider Mark Montgomery wrote that a weighted GPA factors in the difficulty of a student’s classes, while an unweighted GPA only accounts for the actual grades, regardless of how hard the classes are. Most high schools send both GPAs so that colleges can gain a better understanding of the applicant.

However, this does not mean you can work less in your advanced placement classes and expect your final grade to get a special boost. Montgomery added that most colleges will use applicants’ unweighted GPA when making their decision.

As a result, the best way to continue preparing for college may be to think less about weighted and unweighted GPAs and just continue to work hard in class.ADNFCR-16000756-ID-800672856-ADNFCR - helping you find colleges and universities that offer the accredited programs that most interest you.

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The difference between a weighted and unweighted GPA
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