Class rank is common thing to hear when you are in high school. Lots of people say it is important for college application, or is it?
About class rank
Class rank is a way to measure your academic achievements stack up against other members of your grade. The ranking are determined from highest to lowest students according to their GPAs. Your rank will be higher if you have higher GPA than other members of your grade. Another factor might be accounted as well such as the difficulty level of class in which honors and AP courses are weighted more heavily than regular courses. For example, there are two students with the same exact grades. However, one of them took AP courses while the other enrolled in regular courses. The student who took AP courses will rank higher even with identical grades.
In the U.S, only about half of high schools use class ranking. They are usually competitive private schools that use class ranking. Most public schools also still use class ranking. Meanwhile, some others still make it optional. There are also high school that don’t disclose ranking information to student population. However, they still track it and provide it to colleges if needed.
Class rank and college admission
Class rank is still considered as one of the most important factors in college admission. In fact, it is the second most important factor after GPA, test score, grades, and strength of curriculum. However, it still vary from one college to another in practice.
Most private colleges pay less care to class rank and place emphasis more on recommendations, personal essays, leadership experience, and individual talents. As for most public schools, class rank is still included into the requirement students need to attach in their application. As for large universities and colleges, class rank is used to help them sort through the high volume of applications received. Generally, class rank will be consider if the admission officers need it but it is not consider the only factor that paint the complete picture.
What to know about class rank
The most important thing to know about class rank is it should not define who you are. You should not feel inferior because you are not ranked high in your school. Yes, it can be one of the factors to be considered by college admission officers. However, it doesn’t hold high value to make their decision. Your goals during high school should not be limited only to rank higher but also getting involved in extracurricular activities, developing your leaderships, and building good relationships with your teachers since they will write recommendations for your college application.
Today, parents, high school administrators, as well as students feel that eliminating class rank is more beneficial in providing fair process in college admission process. By omitting class rank, admission officers can weight other factors more closely such as personal essays, test score, extracurricular activities, etc. Make sure to elevate other elements of your college application higher to help you stand out from your competition during college admission.