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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

Can anyone explain a weighted GPA in high school terms?

Alright, so I get that there's a difference between weighted and unweighted GPAs, but I’m a bit lost on the details. Can someone break down what a weighted GPA is and how it’s calculated in high school? Plus, how do colleges interpret a weighted GPA compared to an unweighted one?

7 months ago

Sure thing! A weighted GPA takes into account the difficulty of your courses in addition to the grades you've earned. For example, an 'A' in an Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) course might be worth 5.0 instead of the standard 4.0. The same goes for honors courses which might weigh an 'A' as a 4.5. The goal is to acknowledge that some classes are more challenging than others.

When calculating a weighted GPA, each grade is multiplied by the weight or 'scale' associated with the level of the class, and then the average is taken. This means that a weighted GPA can be higher than a 4.0, reflecting the higher level courses taken.

Colleges will often look at your weighted GPA to get a sense of how you've challenged yourself with rigorous coursework. However, they'll also consider your unweighted GPA, which standardizes all courses on a scale up to 4.0, for a direct comparison to other students. Many colleges will recalculate your GPA based on their own scale anyways, to ensure consistency among applicants. Just remember, course rigor is really important, so that weighted GPA can indeed make a positive impression!

7 months ago

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