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Articles / Applying to College / How Will Admission Officers View an 88 in Community College Class?

How Will Admission Officers View an 88 in Community College Class?

Sally Rubenstone
Written by Sally Rubenstone | Nov. 2, 2010

Question:Last year I was enrolled in Dual Credit US History at my high school from a local community college. My final grade in both semesters was an 88. How hard will college look and feel about this B.

It's not clear to "The Dean" if you took this class right at your own high school or on an actual college campus. In either case, depending on where you're applying and on the rest of your academic record, a "B" could be a great grade or just a decent one. However, I'm inferring from the tone of your question that you think it's the latter ... i.e., good but not super.

At the more selective colleges, your 88 will probably be viewed as a high "B." Most admission officials will give you credit for traveling beyond your high school to find a potentially challenging class (if you did indeed leave your high school to do so) or, if the class was taught at your school, they'll appreciate the fact that you elected what was presumably one of the more rigorous options available. BUT--at the most hyper-selective colleges--your "competition" will include students who have earned a string of "A's" in community college classes and perhaps even A's in classes at selective four-year schools. So, at these picky places, the high B will probably be regarded as very respectable but not super impressive, even though it was earned in a college-level class.

Nonetheless, wherever you are applying, admission folks won't look at this 88 in a vacuum. They'll be focusing on your overall academic and personal profile and on where this grade fits into the big picture.

(posted 11/02/10)

Written by

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone knows the competitive and often convoluted college admission process inside out: From the first time the topic of college comes up at the dinner table until the last duffel bag is unloaded on a dorm room floor. She is the co-author of Panicked Parents' Guide to College Admissions; The Transfer Student's Guide to Changing Colleges and The International Student's Guide to Going to College in America. Sally has appeared on NBC's Today program and has been quoted in countless publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Weekend, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, People and Seventeen. Sally has viewed the admissions world from many angles: As a Smith College admission counselor for 15 years, an independent college counselor serving students from a wide range of backgrounds and the author of College Confidential's "Ask the Dean" column. She also taught language arts, social studies, study skills and test preparation in 10 schools, including American international schools in London, Paris, Geneva, Athens and Tel Aviv. As senior advisor to College Confidential since 2002, Sally has helped hundreds of students and parents navigate the college admissions maze. In 2008, she co-founded College Karma, a private college consulting firm, with her College Confidential colleague Dave Berry, and she continues to serve as a College Confidential advisor. Sally and her husband, Chris Petrides, became first-time parents in 1997 at the ripe-old age of 45. So Sally was nearly an official senior citizen when her son Jack began the college selection process, and when she was finally able to practice what she had preached for more than three decades.

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