Anonymous asked in Education & ReferenceHigher Education (University +) · 11 months ago

If my gpa is very low and my ACT score is high, how will colleges view this?

I struggled with terrible anxiety throughout high school, To the point where I'd puke from anxiety attacks every morning, I missed lots of school and was visiting with my doctor regularly to get it under control. When I came back to school, My AP class dropped me because I missed too much school. Although I would get my work sent to me so I could do it from home, she said didn't want to help me "catch up." She said she was too busy.

I got my anxiety under control in 11th grade and my grades went from C's and D's to mostly A's and some B's. I graduated with a very low gpa because of this. Then, I took the ACT and I got a very good score.

Is my low gpa a deal breaker? Or does my ACT make up for this?

8 Answers

  • 11 months ago

    Say you have done the near-impossible, and gotten an amazing SAT score of 2200 or higher or an ACT score of 32 or higher. Many high school students across the country are probably jealous of you!

    But what if your GPA is much lower – a 3.0, or even a 2.0? Do you still have a shot at top colleges? What will admissions officers think about you?

    If you have a high SAT/ACT score but low GPA, admissions officers will assume your academic potential is high – your SAT/ACT scores show that – but that your motivation is low, hence your low GPA.

    A “smart slacker” could be the first thing that comes to mind when an admissions officer reads your file.

    So what you have to do is prove that assumption wrong. Whether you have personal circumstances leading to a low GPA, a demanding extracurricular, or other academic preparation outside of high school classes, your goal is to show that not only are you smart – but you can also work hard and do well in college.

    We will go through a series of scenarios, guided by the main questions admissions officers will be asking, about why your GPA is low and what it means. For each scenario, we have some specific advice but read through all of them as your situation is likely unique and combines multiple scenarios.

  • 11 months ago

    It's good you dealt with matters and got your grades up. But you probably waited too long, and have not had enough time to show matters really are handled for the long-term and you can maintain good grades, etc. You can try to apply to some universities, but you probably should consider community college first. Prove you can maintain good health, good grades, etc, and that you grown past your former problem.

  • 11 months ago

    On first glance they may look at your ACT score (which indicates your potential to do college level work) and your mediocre high school GPA and wonder if you are a slacker. So that makes your essay really important. You'll need to write about your anxiety, how it affected your grades and then how you overcame the anxiety. In choosing a college, you might avoid high pressure schools and maybe larger schools and instead choose a smaller, friendlier, more supportive school. A lot depends on your intended major and whether it is offered at smaller schools.

  • 11 months ago

    it probably depends on the college, i would just apply and see

  • What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
  • Squid
    Lv 7
    11 months ago

    Word it a lot differently, but explain the issue in your essay. It would also help if you have a teacher or guidance counselor mention in a recommendation letter how much improvement you've shown since overcoming your medical issues.

  • drip
    Lv 7
    11 months ago

    You need to write an letter of explanation. Having your Hs counselor write a letter of recommendation with an explanation of your gpa will help.

    That you got help and can now function and get the grades is important.

  • P
    Lv 7
    11 months ago

    A good ACT helps a lot, each college uses a combined scale.  If you suffer from bad anxiety the last thing you need is to be put into a really competitive high pressure college anyway.   Things are a way for a reason. Regardless college gives you a fresh start.  If you do really well in an easier college you can always get a transfer to one of the better ones later and your final degree will be from the college you graduate from.   

  • Kyle
    Lv 7
    11 months ago

    every college is different. some may see your grades and see that you improved over time, studied hard, and got a good ACT score as well. others may question why you didn't do that all four years.

    if it comes down to it, don't be afraid to go to a community college. you still take college level courses towards an assoicates degree. while you may not get the "college experience" of living on campus, you still take classes in your desired field, get your associates, then transfer in two years and finish your bachelor's degree.

    some career fields may only need an associates degree too depending on what you want to do. so do some research. if you can live at home while at community school, you can save a lot in tuition and room and board.

    some community schools work with local colleges and universities and have programs to help transfer credits easier.

    otherwise, all you can do is apply to school's you're looking at and hope for the best.

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