GPA Computation

My son will be applying from out of state. He has a weighted 4.2 and 3.7 unweighted. I see very high GPAs listed, but his school only awards a top GPA of 5.0 for AP classes. Can you achieve a GPA of over a 5.0 in Florida?

When he completes the application, will he be listing all four years of his honors chorus and band classes?

His school considers a 90-92 to be a B+. How does he submit his school’s grading scale or can he mark those as As and any grades from 80-89 a B?


You’ll need to abide by his school’s grading scale, so you can’t recategorize a 92 as an A. His school should be submitting to the colleges a school profile that will outline their grading scale, APs offered, among other things. The high school counselor might be able to share with you their school profile.

Colleges are accustomed to different grading scales. At our high school, a student needs a 100% in an AP class to get 5.0 grade points. A 90 in an AP class, which is still an A, gets 4.0 grade points. So it’s a sliding scale based on their exact number grade and it deflates our GPAs. The “average” GPA for a student admitted to UF (one school that I happened to check) was higher than our valedictorian’s GPA, and we have one of the top high schools in the state.

The Common App will ask him to list all of his high school classes, as well as any middle school classes for which he received high school credit. He can designate classes as regular, honors, GT, or AP, as I recall. You can set up a parent account and take a look at the application.

So don’t lose sleep over it and trust the system as best you can. It sounds like your son is a strong student. Best of luck.

There is clearly an element of unfairness with the way some schools award both regular credit and bonus points for honors/AP/etc. School systems who use the old 93+ A system are really putting their students at a disadvantage in college admissions.

On the bright side, UCF puts heavy weight on SAT/ACT scores, so if his scores are high, his GPA won’t hurt his chances.

If your son’s school’s system unfairly penalizes him, you could try sending Undergraduate Admissions an email and advising them of that. It IS going to make a difference in his GPA, and unfairly so.

For weighted GPA, UCF recalculates the weighting according to their own standards. First of all, they award bonus points only for core courses required for high school graduation by the state of Florida. Therefore, grades in elective classes and courses like band and chorus will not count at all.

UCF adds 1.0 point for an AP A, and 1/2 point for an AP B. I believe they award 1/2 point for an Honors A and 0.25 point for an Honors B. They do not award bonuses for any honors or AP grade below a B, and no points for non-core classes.

If you have any questions about admission standards, there is a wealth of information on the UCF Undergraduate Admissions webpages. You can also call or email them, and you will find them very helpful. You will get a lot more information and help by calling than emailing.