This calculator computes Grade Point Average (GPA), allowing you to calculate your GPA using either letter grades or their point values; the calculator has default point values for letter grades, but these can be adjusted to match your specific point system. The inputs will be saved in your browser for up to one year to make subsequent use of the calculator more convenient. To calculate high school GPA specifically, please use our High School GPA Calculator, which is designed to handle both weighted and unweighted GPAs.
What Is a GPA?
A grade point average (GPA) is a number that is used to measure how well a person scores on their courses on average. There are many different GPA systems used, but the most common form assigns a point value, ranging from 0-4.0, to a letter grade (which itself corresponds to a range of percentages), ranging from A-F, attained in a course. The point values for all courses that a student takes are then used to calculate their GPA.
The GPA system is widely used throughout the United States (US) at several levels of education. Mostly, it is used in high school and college, and there are some distinctions between the systems used. Generally, high school GPA systems are more variable due to factors like Honors and AP classes, which sometimes result in the use of a weighted GPA system in which the difficulty of the courses taken is a factor that affects the point value of the letter grade result. Many high schools use different scales, so it is important to know the scale used when comparing GPAs between different institutions. For example, an A in an AP class is a 5.0 in certain systems, while it is a 4.0 in others. This distinction usually doesn't exist for college courses, which typically use only a 0-4.0 scale. Also, there is not much consistency in whether or not a high school or college uses letter grades that include plusses and minuses (A+, B-, etc.). Some do and some don't, and when they are included, these grades have their own respective point values. The GPA system in its simplest form defines an A as a 4.0, a B as a 3.0, a C as a 2.0, a D as a 1.0, and an F as a 0.0. Some schools or colleges may only use this system, but more commonly, plusses and minuses are included for most of the letter grades, and most of the variation occurs with whether or not an A+ exists or not, and whether that A+ is a 4.0, a 4.3, or some other value.
Below is a table that shows an example of a GPA system that includes the letter grades A+ through F along with their corresponding percentage and point values.
|Letter grade||Percentage||Point value|
|A+||97-100||4.3 (or 4.0)|
Note that the letter grade and percentage ranges in the above table are fairly standard, though the designation for an F can vary. In some cases, anything below a 65 may be considered an F, and a D- is sometimes not used. Again, it is important to fully understand the grading systems involved when making comparisons between grades and GPAs. Other than these differences, the key differentiator between most GPA systems is the point values associated with a given letter grade/percentage range.
How GPA is calculated?
After determining the letter grades used and their corresponding percentage ranges and point values, the next step in calculating GPA involves determining the number of credits for each of the courses taken. The credits must be taken into account, since some courses may be worth 2 credits, others 4 credits, and so on, so the grade attained in the class must reflect the number of credits the course is worth. The number of credits a course is worth is set by the institution, and is generally based on the content of the course as well as other factors such as the number of hours of weekly classes and classwork a student must complete.
Given the number of credits a course is worth and the letter grade attained in that course, the GPA can be found by multiplying the point value by the number of credits for each course taken, finding the sum of these products, and dividing by the total number of credits. For example, the following table shows the grades attained by a student, the credit hours, and the point values used at their institution:
|Letter grade||Point value||Credit|
The student's GPA is calculated as follows:
Thus, the student's GPA for these 3 courses is a 3.88.
Different grading systems
There are many different grading systems used throughout the world. The GPA and letter grade system described above is primarily used in the United States, though many similar systems exist around the world. In general, most grading systems involve the use of percentages, letter grades, or some sort of numbered scale that indicates the achievement level of the student. Many of these can be converted to an estimated GPA by comparing the grading systems.
In the UK, the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) exam uses a scale that ranges from 1-9. It compares to the US grading system as follows:
|UK scale||US grade|
To convert a UK score to a US grade, identify the US letter grade then determine the point value of the letter grade, and use the method described above. Note that the UK credits are also different from US credits. Generally, 10 UK credits is equal to 3 US credits, and 15 UK credits is equal to 4 US credits. This is not exact, since US universities often will not use fractional credits when converting scores.
The Indian grading system largely uses percentages. Students can score between 0-100%, and their scores are reported as an average of the percentage scores achieved in their courses. In some cases, a 10-point scale is used instead in which the percentage score attained by the student is divided by 10 to determine the score based on the 10-point scale. While it is possible to use these percentages to estimate GPA, most US universities are familiar with the Indian grading system, and since conversions to GPA are rarely exact, it is best to report the percentage score and leave the conversions to the universities. However, as a general estimate, Indian grades can be converted to a GPA using the formula
Where X is the percentage score achieved. For example, given that a student achieves an average of 85% for their courses, their GPA can be estimated as follows:
|- 1 = 3.25|
Note that in the US grading system, an 85 is a B, which has a point value of 3.0, showing that the above is not an exact conversion.
The grading system in the Netherlands uses a scale of 1-10, which compares to the US system as follows:
|Netherlands scale||US grade|
As with other grading systems, converting to GPA is not an exact science. It is possible to estimate GPA, but when applying to US colleges it is best to leave the conversion to the universities. However, an estimate of the GPA can be obtained by selecting the appropriate letter grade, determining its point value in the US GPA system, and determining the number of credits based on the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). Generally, a US credit is half the credits in the ECTS. Thus, 60 ECTS = 30 credits in the US system. To estimate GPA, convert the number of credits to the US system then use the method described above in the "How is GPA calculated" section.
The German grading system uses a scale of 1-6, with 1 being the highest grade that can be achieved, and 6 being the lowest. The German grading system compares to a US GPA as follows:
|German scale||US GPA|
The above are just a few examples of different grading systems used throughout the world. There are others, and it is important to understand that converting between grading systems should largely be left to the institutions you are applying to, since they are likely more familiar with the different grading systems throughout the world. Converting your grades yourself when applying might misrepresent your grades to the institutions you are applying to.