Admissions

Do Colleges Favor Applicants From Less Rigorous High Schools to Boost Entering-Student Stats?

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I am aware that colleges look at high school profiles and are aware of the rigor of each school when making admissions decisions. However, are colleges tempted to take kids from easier school districts who may have higher GPAs, knowing that GPA is one of the “stats" that raises up the college profile in rankings? I live in a strong academic suburb area, and the honors classes seem very challenging. Teachers take pride in making “A" grades very difficult to attain. I think it's great for preparing the kids for challenges, but I do have concerns that it may harm them in the college search process, if schools are zeroed in on SAT and GPA minimums.

That's a reasonable question, yet one that “The Dean" hasn't been asked before. But the answer is “No." Rigorous high schools, both private and public, are typically the “bread and butter" at the more selective colleges. They're often the places with the highest SAT and ACT scores, as well as with the largest chunk of full-pay parents and generous donors. So admission offices won't overlook strong applicants from tough high schools just to bump up their GPA averages by a hair.

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