It’s your senior year. You’re taking the SAT or ACT, and applying for colleges is becoming more and more real by the day. As you look for colleges, we recommend that you make a college list. A college list is exactly what it sounds like; you make a list of all the colleges you may want to apply to. When looking for tips on how to go about creating a college list, you might come across advice suggesting that you check out a college’s average GPA and test scores of incoming freshmen. But why should you look at those numbers? We’ve broken down exactly why.
How Comparing GPAs and Test Scores Helps
When you compare a college’s average GPA and test scores to yours, you get a better idea of your chances of getting into that particular college. Colleges and universities put out the numbers based on the newest freshmen class. That means that you get a pretty good idea of what the most recent averages are and how your GPA and scores compare.
Is your GPA and/or test scores above average? Then there’s a stronger chance the school will accept you. Consider these as your safety colleges. If your scores are around the averages of the school’s, it would be a match college.
If your scores are below the average for that particular college, you might have a slimmer chance of getting accepted. Considering how much every application costs, you may want to think carefully about applying to a school if there is a huge difference between your score and the college’s average score. It’s best to only have a few reach schools on your list. While it’s great to aim high, if the majority of your applications are for reach schools, there’s a lower chance that you’ll receive an acceptance letter in general.
GPA and Test Scores Aren’t Everything Though
Of course, your GPA and test scores are important factors in your college application. However, they’re not everything. Colleges and universities will also look at your extracurricular activities, your hobbies, your essays, and, most importantly, you as an overall person. While colleges do want to see that you do well academically, they’re also looking for a student who will fit with their college campus and culture. Your GPA and test scores can only express so much of your personality and ideas. Your college application is your chance to show the college who you are as an individual, so don’t get too wrapped up in getting a 4.0 GPA or a perfect SAT or ACT score.
College Raptor Can Help
Want to know the average ACT / SAT scores (and subscores) for a particular college? College Raptor has you covered. Simply search for that particular school and click on its Admissions tab. You can even compare your own scores and discover your acceptance odds estimate with a free account! Even better, all your schools and comparisons are in one convenient list, so you don’t have to keep going back and forth.
Use College Raptor to discover personalized college matches, cost estimates, acceptance odds, and potential financial aid for schools around the US–for FREE!