Class ranking is a measure of how an individual student's grades compare to his peers' grades. Administrators typically rank students according to their grade point averages, so students with higher grades have a better class ranking. Class ranking is important for the college admissions process, because it allows admissions committees to compare students from different high schools. For example, a student who earns an A- average at a very easy high school will have a lower rank than a student who earns the same grades at a tougher high school. That's why some colleges, like the University of Texas, will automatically admit any students who rank in the top 10 percent of their class.
Boosting Your Class Rank
Since class ranking is all about grades, the only way to increase your class rank is to get better grades than other students at your school. Some schools also weight grades according to the difficulty of each individual course. For example, students in normal classes at Garland High School in Texas can earn 12 grade points for an A+. Students in Advanced Placement courses, however, earn 15 grade points for an A+. That means that if a student in a regular English class and a student in an AP English class both earn the same letter grade, the student in the harder course will receive a better class rank.
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