Has anyone here gotten into Barnard with a low GPA?

Hi! I recently visited Barnard and absolutely fell in love with it. I have lots of schools in mind, including safeties that I would be happy to go to. However, Barnard is definitely a first choice for me. Is there anyone who’s gotten into Barnard with a low GPA?? Are there any current Barnard students who can speak on getting into Barnard with a low gpa?? I’m in a situation where my GPA is considerably below Barnard’s average, but I have great extracurriculars that show genuine interest in what I want to pursue, and my essays are also very good, and have been reviewed to the max. I just wanted to hear some people’s experiences with getting into Barnard and how they did it. Thanks!

GPA’s are best understood in context. What is the rigor of your schedule? What is the pattern of your grades? What do you mean by low?

Not enough information was provided. Just how low is your GPA? What are your standardized test scores? Do you have the highest course rigor?

From what I can see Barnard has around a 12% acceptance rate https://www.columbiaspectator.com/news/2019/03/25/barnard-admissions-rate-falls-to-record-low-113-percent-for-class-of-2023/ and it is unlikely that a very low GPA (again, we don’t know how low your GPA is) can be overlooked. Typically ECs, essays etc. cannot make up for a GPA that is well below average for a college, especially for an unhooked applicant. It is the job of admissions officers to accept students who can handle the challenging academics of the college and having a strong HS transcript is the best way to prove you can do so.

If you provide more information perhaps you can get a better answer.

If you have a truly low GPA (below 3.3) do you really think that you could handle a Barnard course load?

One of my daughter’s first year roommates had a pretty low GPA, about 3.3. She was deferred first before being accepted. She had a very heavy extracurricular load (3 sport varsity athlete) and showed a lot of community involvement. So it happens, yes. She did really struggle academically that first year, and I think compared herself too much to some of the academic superstars wandering around, so I don’t think it was the easiest path for her, but there are a lot of resources on campus to help with academic success.

Hi! Thank you so much, this is very helpful! I’ve been taking the hardest classes that pertain to my major (7 APs), and I have around a 3.5 GPA shown on my transcript (I know, it’s pretty low). I hope this helps! I also created my own organization which I’ve done a lot with, and I was part of a bunch of state wide and national choirs. I have a bunch more extracurriculars as well that mean the world to me, but I just wanted personal experiences rather than making a chance me post. Thank you so much once again!! I’ve been stressing out so much!!

Is the 3.5 weighted? There have been students with that GPA who have been accepted to Barnard. Will you be? Who knows — but you will go to college. How are your test scores?

I applied to Barnard with a 3.65. My strengths are also in other areas, mostly EC involvement. Decisions don’t technically come out until tonight, but based on some hijinx that are going on with the portal, I think I got rejected. Given that other areas of my application were fairly strong, I think my grades were the culprit. Barnard love to talk about a holistic admissions process and how they look at the whole person, but I think that’s a little misleading. It is a school, after all, so the first and most important thing they look at is your transcript. I definitely encourage you to apply, because best case you’re admitted to your dream school and worst case you’re not and you move on, but don’t get attached–that was my mistake. :’(

@rosalindacries What do you mean hijinx on the portal? I would wait for the actual decision. That’s the only way you will know for sure. Chin up.

I got rejected. Really hard. My best friend got in, too, which makes it hurt more.
So, to answer OP’s question: Barnard hardly care about anything but your grades. Can’t hurt to try, but absolutely don’t count on admission if your grades are even a little low. “Holistic admission” is a lie :’(

1 Like

…or, even if they are REALLY good. When 90% of very qualified applicants have to be rejected, then the reality is that NO ONE can count on admission. When my daughter was accepted, another high-honors and high-achieving student in her school was not even deferred.

I understand your frustration, but as applicant to a highly selective school, you do realize that your sample size of 1 doesn’t exactly support such a generalization?

Watching acceptance over the years, I can state for a fact, that very many high-GPA applicants were denied admission, while lesser GPA applicants (a “little” low, as you say) were accepted, supporting the claim that Barnard admission uses a broad range of considerations.

On the other hand, any college wants to see their admitted students succeed. It would only be fair to the student and parents, that a college would give weight to past academic success as one of the indicators that this person is more likely than not to manage well at Barnard.

Hi! I applied for Barnard early '24 and I have a low GPA of below 3.5 unweighted, but I showed an upward trend ( a little higher than 3.8 in junior year). My strengths were also a high SAT score, and plenty of EC activities with leadership. I was accepted despite my low GPA so I would give it a shot!

1 Like

I was waitlisted last year with a 3.667 uw GPA. My SAT was pretty low too (1200) so there’s definitely hope. Kill those essays; they weigh so much

did you end up getting in later on??

hi, no. i was waitlisted still but i ended up at another women’s college instead!

thats amazing!! do u mind me asking which womens college you ended up at? i love the sister schools and applied to Wellesley and bryn mawr too :slight_smile: barnard is my forever dream school but I had a 3.64 bc I had a mental health crisis my sophomore year and got really horrible grades… I’m super nervous to hear back from them soon

1 Like

So sorry for being late, if you’re even active anymore. I went to Agnes Scott. I hope that college is treating you well and that you like your current school :slight_smile: