Weighted and Unweighted GPAs are methods of calculating a student’s academic performance, but they account for different factors:
- Unweighted GPA:
- Based purely on a student’s grades in classes.
- The scale typically goes from 0 to 4.0, where A = 4.0, B = 3.0, etc.
- Does not consider the difficulty level of courses.
- Weighted GPA:
- Takes into account both grades and the difficulty level of the courses.
- AP, IB, and honors courses usually add extra points to the scale, making it possible to have a GPA higher than 4.0.
- For example, an A in an AP class could be equivalent to a 5.0 rather than a 4.0.
The weighted GPA is often considered to provide a more accurate reflection of a student’s academic achievements and rigor, but not all schools use it. Colleges may look at both or recalculate GPA based on their criteria.