GPA Predicts College Success 5x Better than ACT Scores

A recent study published in the Educational Researcher journal demonstrated that a students high school grade point average (GPA) predicts college graduation rates five times more accurately than ACT scores.

The study examined over 55,000 students who graduated from Chicago Public School and immediately attended a four-year college, with the GPA correlation remaining consistent regardless of which school the student attended. Findings show that each incremental increase in GPA improved the odds of college graduation rates, running contrary to the assumption that standardized test scores are the most reliable indicators of success.

From Education Dive:

Though standardized tests are still the primary tool used by federal and state governments to measure student achievement, the Every Student Succeeds Act has embraced the use of a broader set of metrics to measure student and school success. Colleges and universities, likewise, are also increasingly embracing alternate metrics as predictors of college success in enrollment decisions.

The movement to do away with ACT/SAT scores still has a long way to go, however. Despite the research and push by advocacy groups to eliminate these requirements, most colleges and universities continue to use the tests as a benchmark for admissions. Of 221 colleges surveyed in a report by the National Association for College Admission Counseling, 45.7% considered the SAT/ACT scores of “considerable Importance,” while only 5% said they were of “no importance.”

Read the full study here.