3 years ago
Admissions Advice

does securing a good rank in a nation-wide exam count as something I can put in the honors section

hi, I took an exam called the jee main which about 1.3 million students take and got a rank below 50 is this worth mentioning in the common app? and can I include this in the chancing engine someway?

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Accepted Answer
3 years ago[edited]

I hope I can clarify the intent of the awards and honors section of the Common App or Coalition App. They are there for specific awards or honors, not test scores.

In the US, the only standardized test results that matter is your SAT or your ACT score. If you get a 99% percentile test score like a 1530+ SAT or 34+ ACT score you just would submit that on the common app. You would never write that you received a 99% percentile score as an honor. The only connection between an SAT and an honor is if you got a 99% percentile PSAT score as an 11th grader and that score qualified you as a National Merit Scholar (Commended, Semi-Finalist, or eventually Finalist). If you followed up your 99% PSAT percentile score with a 99% percentile SAT score, you'd be given the honor of Nat'l merit Semi-finalist or Finalist. Now that would be an award/honor on the common app because it's connected with an award certificate, some monetary scholarship money ($2500.00 USD max), and the opportunity to get 1/2 your tuition paid at some colleges like USC, etc.

Another example would be the putting in an award/honor for being a US Presidential Scholar Finalist or Semi-Finalist. So to qualify for the Semi-Finalist you have to be nominated based on your SAT or ACT test score by your school, etc and out of 3,900,000 SAT/ACT test-takers, only 625 get this award and 161 get the finalist award. I wish I could put that down as one of my awards/honors but they announce the awardees in April/May of your senior year like 5/6 months after the college applications are due so that just goes on my LinkedIn profile page instead.

Unless your Rank/Score is tied with some Indian scholarship award or honor such as "Indian National JEE Merit Scholar" for example, your high JEE rank/mark is not something I would add as an award/honor. It certainly seems to be something good in India because I'm sure a high JEE rank/mark makes you a better candidate for Indian Colleges and Universities.

I'm confident since you are super smart and a great test taker, you should do well on your SAT or ACT exam. If you get a high score that would really help you stand out amongst the 10s of thousands of Indian applicants this next cycle.

Good Luck

3 years ago

I'd say put it in. It's definitely not an honor but you surely need to let admissions officers know about your JEE rank. An under 50 rank in JEE means you are literally a god in your High School curriculum. Most people outside India don't really understand how excruciatingly difficult it is to get even a below 200 rank. If you have bagged some international olympiads, you have a very decent chance of getting into colleges like MIT.

I'm wondering though, why do you want to apply to colleges in the US if you already have a below 50 rank in JEE? I guess you want to explore different education curriculums and different cultures, in which case, it's totally fine.

All the best!

What are your chances of acceptance?
Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
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Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

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