College Planning

Written by Shefali Sundram

Updated on: 17 Jul 2024

GPA is a numerical representation that encapsulates your overall performance across different courses and semesters, typically graded on a scale of 0 to 4.0 or 5.0. It is widely used by colleges, universities, and employers to assess an individual’s academic capabilities and potential.  Understanding how to calculate your Grade Point Average (GPA) is fundamental for students to gauge their academic performance. You can utilize these steps to calculate and maintain track of it throughout your academic tenure:

Example 1:

Calculating GPA within a Single Institution

• Assign Numerical Values to Letter Grades:
• A = 4.0, B = 3.0, C = 2.0, D = 1.0, F = 0.0
• Calculate Grade Points for Each Course:
• English (A, 3 credits) = 4.0 x 3 = 12.0
• Mathematics (B, 4 credits) = 3.0 x 4 = 12.0
• Science (A, 3 credits) = 4.0 x 3 = 12.0
• Total Grade Points and Credits:
• Total Grade Points = 12.0 + 12.0 + 12.0 = 36.0
• Total Credits = 3 + 4 + 3 = 10
• Calculate GPA:
• GPA = Total Grade Points / Total Credits = 36.0 / 10 = 3.6

Example 2:

Calculating GPA from Multiple Institutions

• Combine Transcripts:
• Institution 1: GPA = 3.5 (30 credits)
• Institution 2: GPA = 3.8 (20 credits)
• Grade Points from Institution 1 = GPA x Credits = 3.5 x 30 = 105.0
• Grade Points from Institution 2 = GPA x Credits = 3.8 x 20 = 76.0
• Total Combined Credits:
• Total Credits = Credits from Institution 1 + Credits from Institution 2 = 30 + 20 = 50
• Calculate Cumulative GPA:
• Cumulative GPA = Total Combined Grade Points / Total Combined Credits = (105.0 + 76.0) / 50 = 181.0 / 50 = 3.62

How to Calculate GPA Using a GPA Calculator

Utilizing a GPA calculator simplifies the process of determining your Grade Point Average (GPA) accurately.

Enter Course Information:

• Input the name of each course
• Enter the credit hours or units for each course.

Always refer to your institution’s guidelines to understand the specific GPA calculation methodology they employ.

Weighting Your GPA With AP/IB/Honor Classes:

Weighting your GPA with AP/IB/Honor classes involves assigning higher value or extra points to these courses compared to standard classes.

These advanced courses are typically given additional weight on a GPA scale, such as an A in these classes equating to a higher grade point (e.g., 5.0) compared to the usual 4.0 for an A in a regular course.

Here’s an example demonstrating how to calculate the weighted GPA with AP/IB/Honor classes:

• Standard Course: English (A, 3 credits)
• Weighted Course (AP English): A = 5.0

Calculation Steps:

• Calculate Grade Points for Each Course:
• English (A, 3 credits) = 4.0 x 3 = 12.0 grade points
• AP English (A, 3 credits) = 5.0 x 3 = 15.0 grade points
• Total Grade Points = 12.0 + 15.0 = 27.0
• Total Credits:
• Total Credits = 3 + 3 = 6
• Compute Weighted GPA:
• Weighted GPA = Total Grade Points / Total Credits = 27.0 / 6 = 4.5

Weighting Your GPA with Credit Hours AND AP/IB/Honors:

Weighting your GPA with both credit hours and the additional value from AP/IB/Honors courses involves factoring in both the credits assigned to each course and the extra weightage given to advanced classes.

Here’s an example illustrating how to weigh your GPA by factoring in both credit hours and the additional value from AP/IB/Honors courses:

• Course 1: Mathematics (Standard, A, 4 credits)
• Course 2: History (AP, B, 3 credits)

Calculate Grade Points for Each Course:

• Mathematics (A, 4 credits) = 4.0 x 4 = 16.0 grade points
• History (AP, B, 3 credits) = 4.0 x 3 = 12.0 grade points
• Total Grade Points = 16.0 + 12.0 = 28.0
• Total Credits:
• Total Credits = 4 + 3 = 7
• Compute Weighted GPA:
• Weighted GPA = Total Grade Points / Total Credits = 28.0 / 7 = 4.0

What is a Good GPA

What is the GPA Scale