Impact of High School GPA and Test Scores on College Graduation Rates

Students who have a higher high school grade point average (GPA) are more likely to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree.

This chart is based on the 2009 follow-up to the 2003-04 Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS:04/09). It shows the percentage of first-time, full-time freshmen in 2003-04 who intended to obtain a Bachelor’s degree and succeeded in obtaining a Bachelor’s degree within six years, disaggregated based on high school GPA. More than two-thirds (68.7%) of students with a high school GPA of at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale attained a Bachelor’s degree within six years.

Percent Graduating with a Bachelor's Degree within 6 Years

This chart shows a similar relationship between admissions test scores and graduating with a Bachelor’s degree. Students who have higher SAT math and verbal scores are more likely to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree within six years.

Percent Graduating with a Bachelor's Degree within 6 Years, by SAT Scores

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