Hi!! I'm a sophomore going into junior year. I took the AP US History entrance exam but didn't get in. I'm going into junior year with 2 honor classes. I took one honors class sophomore year. No APs. If my school offers 9 AP courses and I take at least 3 my senior year, will I have a chance into an Ivy League school such as Princeton? Or at least NYU? Also, my gpa is a 3.6, any advice on how to raise it up to a 3.8?
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This all depends on how many AP’s your school offers. If your school offers twenty APs, and you should try to take as many as possible. APs aren’t a requirement for an Ivy League education, but if your school offers them, you should try to take as many as possible. However, if other students at your school have taken an AP class before their senior year, it shows that they got into that class whereas you did not. This again depends on what you’re trying to get into an Ivy League school for. If you are intending to go based on academics, your GPA needs to raised by a lot. However, if you are intending to go based on sports or a business/organization, your GPA and class rigor matter less. You taking 3 AP classes your senior year does show that you’ve upped your rigor, but you did it late in your high school career. You still have a shot at going to Princeton, with great essays and good SAT/ACT score, if going academically, but it’s a much smaller shot.
if your school only offers 9, you might have an outside shot at top schools with 3 in your senior year. at the very least that means you're taking a more difficult schedule each year, which is a good sign for them. but you'd need to have very strong grades alongside that, as well as—future pending of course—really good test scores. the chancing calculator here will be a better gauge than anything us on the forums will be able to tell you.
as for raising your GPA, getting a 3.8 in your junior year is usually a matter of improving your time management and study skills. though i hate to be the bearer of bad news, raising your overall GPA from a 3.6 to a 3.8 might not be possible just because of the math. like if you get a 4.0 as a junior, i think it would only go up to a 3.7. so just do the best you can with what you have, and aim to have your GPA increase year-by-year, because that's the next best thing.