Understanding Your GPA

Most students will have a GPA summary box on their transcript. Each GPA is interpreted by colleges and universities in different way. While some universities and colleges take your GPA on your transcript into consideration when reviewing your application, such as the UC’s and CSU’s, other schools will recalculate your GPA based on their needs. This may mean the college omits PE, Dance, Religion or Art classes from the GPA to focus in on the core academic classes. Many colleges and universities will not re-calculate your GPA, but will also  look carefully at the strength of your coursework and number of courses of college prep, honors, AP, and IB courses taken while evaluating your application. Your School Counselor submits a school profile with your application so that the admissions officer fully understands the grading scale of your school, as well as the rigor of coursework your high school offers.

Cumulative GPA (Weighted)– This GPA includes grades from all of the courses listed on the transcript.  Weighted means that any course that is IB, AP, or Honors level is awarded an extra point.  For example, AP Biology would be weighted out of A=5pts, B=4pts, C=3pts. Regular College Preparatory classes are unweighted and are valued at A=4pts, B=3pts, C=2pts, D=1pt, F=0pt.

Cumulative (Unweighted)-This GPA includes grades from all of the courses listed on the transcript grade 9-12.  Unweighted means that all courses are considered equal in weight regardless of AP, IB, or Honors level.

CA Cal Grant GPA: The Cal Grant GPA uses all academic coursework for the sophomore year, the summer following the sophomore year, the junior year, and the summer following the junior year. This high school GPA excludes physical education (PE). Failing grades must be included in the GPA calculation unless the course has been retaken. Only include the most recent grade for any course repeated by the student. It does not take AP, IB, or Honors into account.

Weighted 10-12 A-G GPA: This is the GPA that will be used by the UC/CSU system.  This GPA includes a student’s grades from 10th and 11th  grade in A-G approved courses. To determine if your course is an A-G approved course, you can go to UC Doorways to determine UC eligibility.

If you would like to understand how to calculate your UC/CSU GPA, please use this tool

How to report your GPA on the Common Application?

When you report your GPA on the Common Application, you should report the weighted GPA if your school includes the weighted GPA on your transcript.