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Articles / Applying to College / Will a "C" Mean a Rescinded Acceptance?

April 26, 2020

Will a "C" Mean a Rescinded Acceptance?

Question: I applied to college with no grade lower than an A-. But now I'm worried that I may get a “C" in AP Calculus. Will my acceptances be rescinded, if I do? (All my other grades are A's.)

Colleges will not rescind for a single “C" (although a “D" can be a different story). Students who are REALLY in trouble (i.e., those with multiple C's or worse) should write to the colleges that admitted them (or to just the one they plan to attend) to “explain" atypically low grades. Although, in your case, this isn't necessary, it may make you feel better if you have a valid excuse for the downturn. Such reasons might include an illness that led to getting behind (and lost) in class, a death in the family, other stress at home, etc. However, colleges don't like to hear that you got busy with your extracurricular activities … even when that's the truth. So if you don't have a “good" reason for your grade drop, there's no need to say anything at all.


You also can check out one of College Confidential's most popular discussions, “When Do College Rescind Acceptances?" so you can see that many of your peers are on far shakier ground than you are. If you read through the posts on this long thread, you will get stronger sense of when the college folks are likely to revoke an offer of admission. Go to: http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/ask-dean-topics/903319-when-do-colleges-rescind-acceptances-p1.html

Meanwhile, it's not too late to pull up that Calc grade or, at the very least, to make sure that it doesn't dip any lower. If it does, you really could be in hot water.

Good luck!

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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