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Here's what I mean by this: when applying to top colleges, a 4.0 unweighted GPA is no doubt great.However, you'll be a much more competitive applicant if you have, say, a slightly lower 3.8 GPA and have also taken loads of challenging AP/honors courses.You've sent out your applications and can't stop envisioning yourself at your top-choice school. Is it still possible to attend my top-choice school?
And the best way to do this is to create a big spike in your application.
A spike is essentially something you're passionate about and have continuously striven to master.
This means that you could get mostly As and a couple of Bs in challenging AP courses and have a higher chance of getting accepted over someone who got all As but took only easy classes.
This is because colleges like to see that you're continuously challenging yourself.
It could be anything from a love of writing short stories to a passion for chemistry.
Most importantly, your spike should be a field you're truly committed to and for which you have sufficient evidence to prove your commitment.In 2008, I got rejected from my top-choice school, Stanford.Though the rejection letter hurt, on the plus side, it taught me a lot about what I did wrong, both in my application and my overall high school career.To get a slightly more accurate idea of your admission chances to a particular school, use our college admissions calculator.Still, the point is clear: most applicants to highly selective schools get rejected.If you're not sure how high of a GPA your school expects, try looking on the school's website for any information or data about the average GPA of admitted applicants.That being said, getting a high GPA alone isn't as important as getting a good GPA taking a challenging course load.In this article, I use my own rejection experience as a guide to explain how likely a college rejection is for you, how to avoid getting rejected from college, and the steps to take in case your top-choice school just isn't that into you.First things first, how likely is it that you'll actually get rejected from college—more importantly, from your top-choice school?By excelling in several classes, you're providing direct evidence of your deep commitment to learning and academic success. The answer to this will depend on the school you're applying to.If you're applying to a top-25 school such as Stanford, aim for a 4.0 (unweighted) or pretty close to it.