How much does your SAT matter compared to your GPA?

Unfortunately I struggled this semester and had a low average of 84.5. I have a weighted GPA of 3.6, but after this semester it will drop. Hopefully next semester I get my grades right again, and maybe I finish high school with a 3.7. But can my SAT compensate for my low average? Say I get a 1400 SAT. How much will that matter or cover? Can I get into schools like Richmond, Bucknell, or Delaware? I don't just want to go to the local school like everyone else.

7 Answers

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  • Expat
    Lv 6
    3 weeks ago
    Favorite Answer

    SAT scores are often a starting point or first requirement for certain universities and departments. It’s a way to weed out or reduce the overall number of applicants to a more manageable number and then they look at things like GPA, admission essays and other application materials. 

    Source(s): 20+ years university Professor
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  • di
    Lv 4
    3 weeks ago

    Colleges have different viewpoints on SAT/ACT scores.  Some look at them 1st, others totally ignore them.  There are studies all over the place on SAT vs HS GPA and college success.  Read your preferred colleges admissions criteria and philosophy carefully - their admissions policies may answer your question differently at each school.

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  • DON W
    Lv 7
    3 weeks ago

    I suggest you also take the ACT.  Almost all colleges accept either the ACT or the SAT.  Many people do better on the ACT than they do on the SAT.  Once you have both scores, you can only send the better one to the school you are applying to.

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  • Anonymous
    3 weeks ago

    More than GPA (lots of people have a good GPA), but less than your Race or sports ability.

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  • A.J.
    Lv 7
    3 weeks ago

    Both count. GPA is mostly related to particular schools. The SAT is the great equalizer. If you cannot score well, your school was inadequate, or did not aim at subject skills shown in SAT.

    You need more for Richmond. Your GPA and SAT would be on the low side and they use a holistic approach so it becomes "what else do you have to offer?"

    Unweighted Core GPA (4.0 maximum) 25%ile is 3.68 and 75%ile is 4.00

    SAT of 25%ile at 1370 and 75%ile at 1500

    Their applicant acceptance rate is about 28%.

    Bucknell has about a 30% acceptance rate.

    Only 29% of those admitted chose to enroll in the school.

    The SAT range is 1250-1420

    You should generally show 3.5 unweighted GPA

    U of Delaware accepts 66% with a 1160-1350 typical SAT range and can still get accepted with a 3.0 GPA and decent SAT, though 3.57-4.03 in weighted would be typical.

    You do your best with good study practice and take the SAT relatively early to be able to take it again. Try to find notable people that could write a recommendation. Get out and do some volunteer work. When it's time to apply, you assess what you have, choose one sure admission as back-up school, one probable where your chances are at least 66%, and one or two "reach" schools, where you don't think you'll get accepted but stand an OK chance to apply. 

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  • 3 weeks ago

    First tier schools have average SATs 1500-1600, with 1600 being more prevalent. And their average GPAs are 4.10 or better weighted. Pretty much all A's and in AP level courses.

    My point, even your SAT is low when considering top tier universities.

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  • .
    Lv 7
    3 weeks ago

    Universities only consider your unweighted GPA.   With those grades and SAT, you've got about a 50 percent chance at Bucknell.

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