Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.
SchoolBoy12341SchoolBoy12341 Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
Does it look bad for college if you get a couple of A-'s? I got one in Algebra 2 Honors, English Honors, Band, and Spanish 3 H?

Replies to: A-'s

  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 36,675 Super Moderator
    edited May 16
    This is about the 12th time someone has asked this week. :)

    If you get rejected by a college, I highly doubt that the determining factor was a couple of A-'S. Every top college routinely rejects applicants with a 4.0/36/1600 while accepting some with lower stats. Grades are only part of the application. Good luck.
    Post edited by skieurope on
  • SchoolBoy12341SchoolBoy12341 Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    I will rephrase the question skieurope since you have answered it 12 times:

    How drastic of a difference is there between a student who gets all As and a student who gets a half As and half A minus? Is there a small or big difference?
  • NASA2014NASA2014 Registered User Posts: 2,313 Senior Member
    @SchoolBoy12341 That is asking the same question.
  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 36,675 Super Moderator
    edited May 15
    How drastic of a difference is there between a student who gets all As and a student who gets a half As and half A minus? Is there a small or big difference?
    Another way of phrasing your question is: "All other things being equal..." Well, all things are never equal, and top colleges do not base admissions on an algorithm, so the question is unanswerable as rephrased.
  • SchoolBoy12341SchoolBoy12341 Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    What if two students did the same exact ECs and took the same Classes and had the same circumstances?
    Then is there a major or minor difference between all A student and mix of A- and A student?
  • happy1happy1 Forum Champion Parents, Forum Champion Admissions Posts: 22,232 Forum Champion
    edited May 15
    You are asking a question that cannot be solved at this time. Yes, an A- is a notch below an A, that seems obvious. But grades are just one piece of the puzzle in college admissions. So much is unknown since you are just a freshman such as your standardized test scores, your course rigor over the next 3 years, the strength of your recommendation letters and essays, the depth of your extracurricular activities etc. All of these things may or may not prove to be more important than getting an A- rather than an A in a class.

    It is great to be a serious student and know that college is in your future but you do yourself no good by obsessing about the value of an A versus an A- in freshmen classes. For now you should focus on:
    --Working hard, learning, and doing as well as you can in the most challenging curriculum you can manage.
    --When the time comes study for standardized tests.
    --Continue your involvement in activities you care about and work towards making meaningful contributions to those activities.
    --Enjoying spending time with your family and friends.

    When the time comes (junior year) then you will need to honestly asses your academic stats (including GPA, standardized tests, course rigor) as well as your financial needs and apply to a wide range of reach, match, and safety schools that appear affordable (you will have to run a net price calculator for each school you consider) and that you would be excited to attend.
    Post edited by happy1 on
  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 36,675 Super Moderator
    What if two students did the same exact ECs and took the same Classes and had the same circumstances?
    As I said earlier, all other things are never equal, but I'll go along.
    Then is there a major or minor difference between all A student and mix of A- and A student?
    It depends on the college. If both applicants are attending the same HS, and both are applying to Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania with a 90%+ acceptance rate, it will not matter. If both are applying to Harvard, the one with all A's will be viewed more favorably. How much so, nobody can say.

    That said, your original question is for 2 A-'s, which is much different than half A-'s. @happy1 gives some good pointers. Good luck.
  • gallentjillgallentjill Registered User Posts: 1,759 Senior Member
    It makes me so sad that students have to keep asking this question. You will make yourself crazy if you believe that you have to be perfect all the time. None of us really know how top colleges make their decisions. Much of it will have to do with how your school grades. Will your grades put you in the top 10% of your class, the top 5%? There are schools where half the class ends up with 4.0 and it doesn't mean much and schools where 3.7 is the valedictorian. I urge you to also remember that there are hundreds of wonderful colleges out there that will welcome a student with an A- average and even give lots of scholarship money. You will have a much more enjoyable and more educationally sound high school experience if you stop thinking that you need to be perfect in order to have a future.
  • annamomannamom Registered User Posts: 1,375 Senior Member
    edited May 15
    How can all things being equal? do the two students submit the same essay (just one example)?
  • hophop Registered User Posts: 856 Member
    Many schools do not even consider the plus or minus after the grade.
    The UC/CSU systems, for example, do not factor them in. For them, only AP or Honors can bump up the GPA beyond the actual grade points.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 28,641 Senior Member
    edited May 16
    An A letter grade is an A. Yes, an A-, at 3.7 points, isn't as strong as an A. But you aren't being admitted to "elites," (which you asked about on another thread,) based on GPA. Nor is it rack and stack at a top holistic.

    And since a growing number of colleges report less than half the applicants are from schools that rank, there likely isn't that info as a counterpoint.

    But here's the rub. Anyone who gets a migraine splitting hairs about a few A- grades is probably missing the very big point about holistic. It's more than stats. I think, OP, that you need to learn the range of what matters to your possible target colleges.

    And right, it's only hypothetical that any two apps could be the same. Each applicant needs to understand the criteria, have the goods to present, and overall present the whole picture well, in accordance with what the college wants.
  • yucca10yucca10 Registered User Posts: 590 Member
    Our school doesn't even give any A-, only full letter grades. Definitely takes the edge off.
  • sherpasherpa Registered User Posts: 4,602 Senior Member
    All thing being equal, academic institutions prefer the best students, meaning those with higher grades.
Sign In or Register to comment.