Does Harvard Look At Freshman Grades? [FAQs]

It is a common question among high school students looking to apply to Harvard University: does Harvard look at freshman grades? The answer is yes.

All four years of grades are considered when reviewing applications. However, if your freshman-year rates were lower than you would have liked, an upward trend in your sophomore year can help demonstrate improvement and dedication.

Colleges may not place as much emphasis on first- and second-year student grades as they do junior and senior grades. However, striving for academic excellence throughout all four years of high school is still important.

It’s also important to note that the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences uses letter grades A-E with a grade of E being a failing grade.

When applying to Harvard College, specific requirements must be met for your application to be considered. This includes teacher recommendations, test scores, and school reports. The average self-reported unweighted GPA was 3.94, with 54% reporting a perfect 4.0 score.

Additionally, the admitted class of 2026 had 61,221 applicants, with 16.6% coming from New England and 15.2% identifying as African American.

Harvard’s first-year class size consists of over eighty-three percent (83%) of individuals accepted to the Class of 2026, which shows that although getting accepted is competitive, it is possible with hard work and dedication!


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