3 months ago
Admissions Advice

does Unweighted GPA matter?

hi, i'm a junior in hs in the USA. my unweighted is 3.929, but my weighted is much higher (4.929). there's no scale on weighted, it just goes higher the more ap/honors classes you take. should i ever use my unweighted?

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4 answers

Accepted Answer
3 months ago

Both your weighted and unweighted GPAs look great, so I would actually report them both or just report whatever your school will report on your transcript (which is also sometimes both).

The scale is usually based on how many the maximum number of AP/honors classes someone can possibly take, so I would also take a look at that if you want to see how you're doing in more detail.

To answer the title question, your unweighted GPA matters because it shows that you're doing very well in your classes even with your (I'm assuming) very rigorous course load. Hope this helped!

3 months ago

Hi there @bravelight,

I mostly agree with the other users! You have a couple of great GPAs here.

On a resume, I'd put both your unweighted and weighted GPAs since the latter looks a bit inflated and you can demonstrate that the inflation is just a result of how your high school scales. Most companies and programs are used to a 4.0 scale so providing this context can be really helpful. A sample format you can use is

[High School] [dates attended]

- GPA: Weighted: 4.93; Unweighted: 3.93

For college applications, colleges usually ask for your unweighted GPA and then recalculate based on your transcript according to their own weighting system.

3 months ago

Collegevine actually has an article on this:


An unweighted GPA is how well you are doing in your classes in general. A weighted GPA takes into account the difficulty of the classes you are taking (AP, IB, etc) and gives each grade one extra point (an A is 4 in an unweighted and 5 in a weighted).

The article explains it better, but your unweighted GPA is still important. The weighted GPA tells the college the difficulty of your classes, and the unweighted GPA tells them how well you are doing in those classes.

3 months ago[edited]

I'm not quite sure what else you think you "should" be using your unweighted GPA for - if you're talking about a resume for a job application or something, then definitely use your weighted, as anything above a 4 is considered impressive. Other than that, however, you will most likely have to use your unweighted on your college applications depending on what colleges you apply to. Particularly if there is no scale for your weighted GPA, colleges won't know how to assess you in comparison to other applicants who might have a weighted GPA of a 4.93 out of 5 or 6, for example. Many will ask for your unweighted GPA out of 4. If you wanted to use your weighted GPA for the Common App, it asks for the scale that your GPA is measured by, so it would be difficult to do that as there is no cap.

Honestly, your unweighted GPA is just as impressive - if not more so - as your weighted GPA. Often, weighted GPAs can be a bit distorted and are more confusing since so many schools use different scales for them. Just keep that in mind!


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