College GPA Calculator

By Indeed Editorial Team

November 15, 2021

If you’ve recently graduated college or are looking to transfer schools, you may need to calculate your college grade-point average (GPA). This number is often required on applications for internships, graduate schools or jobs.

While most college transcripts will list your GPA, it’s important to know how to calculate it for yourself so you can estimate it at any time. In this article, we explain how to calculate your college GPA using examples.

Related: Guide: How To Get a Job After College

College GPA calculator

Enter your information in this easy-to-use Indeed GPA calculator to determine your college grade-point average:

Semester 1

Your semester GPA is 4.00

Your overall GPA is 4.00

Related: What Is the Average GPA? (And How To Improve Yours)

How to manually calculate college GPA

To calculate your college GPA manually, you'll need:

  • Your letter grade in each course

  • The number of credits for each course

  • Your college's GPA scale

You can find your grades and the number of credits for each course on your college transcript. Your college's GPA scale will be listed in your student handbook and most likely on the college's website. Although some colleges may use a more complicated scale, the typical GPA scale for converting letter grades to numbered grade points is:

  • A = 4

  • B = 3

  • C = 2

  • D = 1

  • F = 0

To find your GPA for a college semester, follow these steps:

  1. Convert the letter grade for each course to a grade-point number using your college's scale.

  2. Multiply each course's grade-point number by the number of credit hours you earned for the course.

  3. Add all of the numbers resulting from step two together.

  4. Add all of the credits for each course together.

  5. Divide the combined subtotals (step three) by the total number of credit hours (step four) for all the courses.

Related: GPA Chart: How To Convert Your Grades to a 4.0 Scale

Example college GPA calculation

Here’s an example following the steps laid out above to help you figure out your own college GPA calculation:

Jamie's transcript for the first semester of college is:

Class Grade Credits
Algebra I A 3
Composition I A 3
Biology C 4
World History B 3

To calculate Jamie’s GPA for the semester, first convert each letter grade to a grade-point number using the college's GPA scale:

Class Grade Grade points Credits
Algebra A 4 3
Composition A 4 3
Biology C 2 4
History B 3 3
Philosophy 101 B 3 3

Next, multiply the number of grade points for each course by the number of credits:

Class Grade Grade points Credits Grade points x credits
Algebra A 4 3 12
Composition A 4 3 12
Biology C 2 4 8
World History B 3 3 9
Philosophy 101 B 3 3 9

Then, add all the numbers from the last step together: 12 + 12 + 8 + 9 + 9 = 50.

Sum up the total number of credits for the semester: 3 + 3 + 4 +3 + 3 = 16.

Divide that number by the total from the prior step: 50 / 16 = 3.125.

Jamie's first-semester college GPA is 3.1.

Related: The Student and New Graduate's Guide to Job Search

Why is it useful to know how to calculate your college GPA?

Your college GPA is a measurement used to:

Determine graduation eligibility and honors

Colleges and universities use GPA to determine if a student will graduate with honors. Although scales can vary by school, typically a GPA of 3.5-3.7 is required to graduate cum laude ("with honor"). To graduate magna cum laude ("with great honor"), you need a GPA of 3.8-3.9, and to graduate summa cum laude ("with highest honor") the GPA requirement is 4.0 or higher. A 2.0 is usually the minimum GPA required for graduation, but some programs might have a higher standard.

Determine class rank

GPA is used to compare students in a class. At graduation, the student who has achieved the highest GPA is the class valedictorian, and the one with the second-highest GPA is the salutatorian. Receiving these honors is an accomplishment appreciated by graduate schools and employers. GPA can also be used to determine what percentile of the class a student ranks in. For example, you could include in your resume or graduate school application that you were in the top 10% of your class.

Apply to graduate school or specialized programs

Graduate schools usually require applicants to provide their college GPA and meet a minimum threshold to be eligible for admission. Also, eligibility for some academic programs can be determined by GPA.

For example, a nursing program or medical school may require students to earn at least a 3.0 or even a 3.5 GPA to remain enrolled in the program. In general programs, a GPA below 2.0 usually warrants academic probation—as a warning for the student to raise their grades—and a consistently low GPA may result in a student's expulsion.

Transfer from one school to another

If you want to transfer from one college to another, providing your current GPA will help the new school determine how many credits to grant you for previous work, as well as determine eligibility for the program you wish to enroll in.

Show academic achievement on your resume

While not required by most employers, if you are a recent college graduate with little work experience, you can list your GPA on your resume. A GPA of 3.5 or higher indicates high achievement and a good work ethic. Including a lower GPA is typically not recommended unless it's asked for by the employer.

Related: 15 Strategies To Improve Your GPA

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