2 years ago
Admissions Advice

What can I improve in my application to have better chances of being accepted into my top school?

I'm currently a junior in high school with a 3.7 GPA, it may be relatively low, but out of 32 total classes I will be taking 16 AP classes along with 6 honors classes throughout all of high school. I am an A-B student, so average with grades regardless of course difficulty. I am in multiple extracurricular activities such as captain of the varsity swim team, and member of: the future problem-solving club, debate club, international culture club, a couple of honors societies, and more. I have an engineering internship this summer, and have taken a majority of stem classes; I specifically successfully took every math course my school had to offer. My SAT score is currently 1270 after I took it for the first time in May. As per Collegevine, I have low chances of entering my top schools (university of michigan- ann arbor, Binghamton, University of Pittsburgh), and I want to know what I need to do to improve my chances of making it in. I want to be an engineer, I'm considering industrial, but until I can get a full confirmation that I want to commit to that, I guess I'm stuck between disciplines.

If anyone can offer any sort of advice and inform me on what I should do to enhance my chances it would be greatly appreciated!

🎉 First post
Let’s welcome @rsri to the community! Remember to be kind, helpful, and supportive in your responses.

Earn karma by helping others:

1 karma for each ⬆️ upvote on your answer, and 20 karma if your answer is marked accepted.

1 answer

Accepted Answer
2 years ago[edited]

No one needs 16 APs to get into a good school. Even if you had 8, you'd be perfectly fine for all the schools you are interested in, maybe still on the heavy side.

Your main problem is your low GPA and low SAT score.

So my recommendation is you cut back on your APs like in 1/2 next term and get your grades up. And secondly grind this summer on SAT prep and aim for a 1450+ score. If you can figure out how to sit for 16 AP classes and still get a 3.7, then it should be no problem to focus 1/2 your energy on prepping for the SAT and getting that up by 200 points. Again, whoever told you that having 16 APs is a key to college admissions is not helping you out enough because your GPA is drowning in course rigor. It would have looked better to have 8 APs and a 3.9 GPA.

Your ECs are perfectly fine for these schools so I would leave them alone. Work on your Common App essay is the 3rd recommendation.

Good luck.

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


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

Community Guidelines

To keep this community safe and supportive:

  1. Be kind and respectful!
  2. Keep posts relevant to college admissions and high school.
  3. Don’t ask “chance-me” questions. Use CollegeVine’s chancing instead!

How karma works