When MIT admissions says they don't care about class rank, this is exactly the type of scenario they are thinking of. So in MIT's case, the "A" would be better as it demonstrates you actually did well, despite the fact it actually will hurt your class rank.</p>
<p>In terms of other top schools, I don't know what to tell you. But it would be dumb for them to care. You are better off asking an adcomm from a top ivy what they think.
I'm mostly concerned about merit scholarships at my top choice state schools. Maybe I can figure out exactly how big the impact would be...
You could consider taking the class pass/fail, and having a supplemental recommendation letter written by your internship supervisor -- a great recommendation letter would pretty clearly mitigate any questions that could arise from taking the course pass/fail.
This is an interesting idea. I'm planning on asking for a LoR anyway.
What I meant was, if you cared about this summer internship (cared as in, wanted to get something out of it, and do well, and have other people know that you did well, because the experience was important to you) then why do you care about class rank more than that? Maybe you have a perfectly valid reason, I don't know. The answer to your question fundamentally comes down to which of these things is more important to you and why.
I don't really care about having other people know. I would have waived the credit altogether if it were possible, but the school district works in mysterious ways. Sorry if there was a misunderstanding :)</p>