Impact of GPA and Test Scores on Private Scholarships

Students who have a higher average high school GPA are more likely to win scholarships. Based on an analysis of data from the 2011-12 National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS), 7.9% of undergraduate students are paying for college with some scholarships. The first chart shows that the percentage receiving scholarships increases with higher GPA. Less than 10% of scholarships ask for information about the student’s GPA. So, this trend may have to due with talented students being more likely to have better academic performance and to win scholarships than a causal relationship between GPA and likelihood of winning a scholarship.

Percent Receiving Private Scholarships by GPA

The second chart demonstrates a similar result, but with the percentage receiving scholarships increasing with higher composite SAT scores.

Percent Receiving Private Scholarships by SAT

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