What do grades really mean for you?

High school and college are entirely rated in GPA scores and grades. The average admittance rate based on the GPA of applicants, the average grades received in the school, to job opportunities seem to be all connected. Students start to measure their self-worth and in turn, grades start to drop, which decreases motivation and so forth. Do grades matter?

The National Association of College Admissions Counselors conducted a survey and revealed that 81% of universities surveyed prioritized grades on all course admissions, taking in account mainly the targetted classes depending on the major. A literature course will heavily look into the grades of English and core classes than math. Of course, the GPA also reflects the specific level of class taken, so an okay grade in a very difficult class goes a longer way than a shiny A in an easy one. The reason the grades are taken into consideration is to gauge how well the student will perform in a difficult college class, as a lower grade will be a greater risk to the school of accepting them.

With this level of importance associated with grades, many students overwork themselves to achieve the ‘perfect’ grade. The University of Michigan conducted a study and found that 80% of students surveyed rate their self-worth by the grades they receive in school. Big schools on average receive twice to ten times as many applications as spaces available, and so the competitive nature of school brings students down from burnout. Large corporations even look into GPAs as a way of seeing if the job candidate has the potential to work under pressure to complete tasks.

These stated aspects of a GPA cause students to look into easier classes to keep up their grades, in hopes of getting into colleges or attaining a favorable position in a job. However, a low GPA does not necessarily mean a definite no to a lot of opportunities. A heavy aspect also looked into is internships, experience, extracurricular activities, and potential. A job in graphic design will most likely skip over the grades in English class, and look more into the portfolio you’ve built. Determination and work towards the set goal is far more prioritized than putting all effort into grades and showing nothing for it.

Keep in mind that if you are struggling with grades, you are most definitely not alone. The message around grades means that those with Cs are seen in a different light than those with As, so make sure to stay positive and help others than need that explanation on the math homework or the chapter summary due Thursday!

Sources:

Lynch, Matthew. “How Important Are Grades for College Admissions?” The Edvocate, 21 Jan. 2020, https://www.theedadvocate.org/how-important-are-grades-for-college-admissions/

Plessis, Susan du. “5 Reasons Why Grades Are Important — Edublox Online Tutor.” Edublox Online Tutor | Development, Reading, Writing, and Math Solutions, 12 Feb. 2022, https://www.edubloxtutor.com/5-reasons-grades-important/

“3 Reasons Grades Are Bad for Education.” THNK, https://www.thnk.org/blog/3-reasons-grades-bad-education/

Gross, Elana Lyn. “Don’t Let Bad Grades Hold You Back from a Good Job.” Monster, https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/get-great-job-terrible-grades-0429

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