<span>3.6 GPA Colleges</span>

3.6 GPA Colleges

GPA, or grade point average, is a simplified number that is used by colleges and universities to get an idea of your general academic performance. It takes the average of all of high school grades and fits them on a scale from 0.01 to 4.0 and the numbers correlate to letter grades. A 3.6 GPA correlates to an A- average, indicative of an academic record comprised of consistently good grades in all subjects.

Is a 3.6 GPA Good?

A 3.6 GPA is not only well above the national average GPA of 3.0 for all high school graduates, it’s also entering the realm of competitiveness for more select colleges. Since one of the goals of establishing a high GPA is to have as many options as possible for college, a 3.6 GPA will be very helpful in accomplishing that objective. By those standards, yes, a 3.6 GPA is good.

I Want to Go to College, What Do I Do?

First and foremost, know that you’re in an excellent place for college acceptance. Across the board, the best course of action is to keep up the great work.

For freshmen and sophomores, take note of the study habits and testing strategies that helped earn a 3.6 GPA and continue nurturing them, but, since you’re in such a good place academically, focusing on extracurricular activities will be beneficial. Colleges and universities are looking for well-rounded students who have dedicated time and passion to after school clubs and organizations, community service projects, or in sport teams.

However, if you’re set on improving your GPA as much as possible, it’s still possible to reach a 3.9 GPA, but it would require nearly flawless semesters (at 4.0) beginning at first semester freshman year. Sophomores can get as high as 3.8 with perfect grades. Adding in AP or honors classes can offer higher GPAs, if those class options are available at your high school.

If you’re a junior, it’s not possible to raise a 3.6 GPA more than a tenth in time for the college application process. Instead, concentrate on preparing for a standardized test like the ACT or SAT. Most colleges evaluate standardized test performance and GPA equally on your application so be sure to devote enough time to prepare for these exams. Take a few practice tests and time yourself in order to feel as prepared as possible on the day of the exam. If you have enough room on your schedule, sign up for a test prep class offered by your school.

For seniors, it’s time to focus on making sure the other parts of your application are just as impressive as a 3.6 GPA. Visit your school’s college resource center and have the college counselor give your essay a thorough critique. Attend sessions with admissions officers from various colleges and network with them to find out what they’re looking for in a competitive application. Be sure to list all of your after school and volunteer activities because every little bit helps, especially with some of the more competitive schools that consider students with a 3.6 GPA.

What Colleges Can I Apply to With a 3.6 GPA?

A 3.6 GPA makes it possible to apply to a wide variety of colleges from large public universities to more selective private schools. We’ve put together a list of these schools below. While no GPA guarantees admission, all of these institutions have a history of admitting students with a 3.6-3.7 GPA.

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Established by the Congregation of the Holy Cross in 1891, the University of Portland is a private Roman Catholic university. UP is home to colleges and schools of Arts & Sciences, Business, Engineering, Nursing, and Education conferring...

“…I can honestly say that I have never felt so well taken care of academically. All of the teachers here are dedicated to their job and to the students. They go out of their way to make sure that every student is keeping up with the material. The class...” – Rosemary from Las Vegas, NV

Founded in 1978, the Savannah College of Art and Design is a private arts university with two locations in Georgia, one in Hong Kong, and a study abroad location in Lacoste, France. With a goal of preparing students for creative professions, SCAD...

“…I enrolled in this art school not knowing the basics, and was apprehensive about attending. However, within the one year and one quarter that I've been in classes, my fears have been proven insignificant. The professors really walk you through...” – Lauren from Warner Robins, GA

Eckerd College
Saint Petersburg, FL

Located in St. Petersburg, FL, Eckerd College is a 4-year liberal arts institution on a mile-long waterfront beach. Eckerd offers upwards of 40 majors, all of which include 4 years of classes in art, literature, the natural and social sciences...

“…If you are looking for a great liberal arts college, Eckerd is the place to be. Along with being on the ocean the school also offers classrooms the face outside instead of compact hallways, which decreases foot traffic.” – Christian from East Point, GA

Named after the patron saint of students, the University of St. Thomas is 4-year Catholic school in the Twin Cities and the largest private non-profit university in Minnesota. St. Thomas hosts eight colleges and schools offering bachelor’s degrees in...

“…Beautiful private college campus located in a big city that offers opportunities both on and off campus. Small class size so you get a lot of attention from your profs. World class education!” – Emily from Osceola, WI

The University of the Pacific is the oldest, private university in California and has admissions that are more selective. The main campus is located in Stockton, and the university operates two satellite campuses in Sacramento and San Francisco,...

“…I am a Computer Science (BS) undergraduate student and I love Pacific! I've always been interested in Video Game Simulation and Development but I was worried that with no experience I would be unable to pursue it. It turned out that Pacific was a...” – Nicos from Monterey, CA

The Southern Methodist University is a private research institution in Texas featuring a liberal arts curriculum. The Dallas campus provides more than 200 areas of study to choose from, along with the Locomotor Lab to address scientific questions on...

“…I am finding that most of what I am learning is everything I did NOT expect to be learning about. But, I suppose that's college for you! In the classroom, I'm learning more about staying engaged when I'm not challenged or indifferent to the subject...” – Ally from Dallas, TX

Founded in 1852 by the Society of Mary, St. Mary’s University is a Catholic liberal arts college in San Antonio. The oldest Catholic university in Texas, St. Mary’s awards undergrad and graduate degrees in more than 75 academic programs. As a...

“…I can definitely say that I am learning a lot here at St. Mary's University! When I say I am learning a lot I don't only mean in a classroom. At St. Mary's University I've learned to speak out, help out, and go all out. I haven't only grown mentally,...” – Patricia from El Paso, TX

Founded in 1869, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is the oldest university in the state and flagship of the NU system. Nebraska is home to nine colleges conferring undergraduate degrees. In addition to classroom facilities, the NU campus hosts The...

“…UNL is big, but not as big as it initially seems. There will definitely be something that interests you. Find your niche or enjoy exploring all your options. ” – Christina from Omaha, NE

Founded in 1917 by the Dominican Friars, Providence College is a Catholic, Dominican liberal arts institution located in the city of the same name in Rhode Island. PC offers 52 major fields of study and was the first college in the nation to offer a...

“…The overall physical appearance of the school is lovely. The school body seems friendly, the guide on my visit seemed very knowledgable. The atmosphere seems to have an open, fun social setting and good school spirit. ” – Emily from Morris Plains, NJ

Lafayette College is based in Easton, PA, and is considered a “Hidden Ivy.” This private college leads all other liberal arts colleges in the US with the most Goldwater Scholarship recipients. Lafayette is ranked on several lists by The Princeton...

“…I love the people here, the professors, and the athletic department. Everyone is very friendly and always helpful. There is no one that I don't like.”

Elmhurst College is a liberal arts institution in the Chicagoland area affiliated with the United Church of Christ. Elmhurst offers bachelor’s degrees in over 60 academic majors. Additionally, the school operates the Elmhurst Learning and Success...

“…So far I have been at Elmhurst for less than a year but so far the classes are decent. I've been taking mainly gen ed classes so far and they interesting. I mean, not all the classes I've taken are super exciting but I don't know of anyone who has...” – Melissa from Bloomingdale, IL

Founded in 1890, North Carolina A&T State University is a public Historically Black College and University and the state’s first land-grant university for people of color. N.C. A&T is home to nine colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees...

“…A&T is a wonderful institution! They provide lots of scholarship, and internship opportunities, and provide other services to their students to ensure success after graduation. I also found out at A&T that as long as I asked for help, I received help...” – Keira from Buffalo, NY

Boise State University is a high-research public university founded in 1932 by the Episcopal Church and located in Idaho's state capital. Boise State offers 200 areas of study through seven academic colleges, which include an honors college as well...

“…After attending Boise State University for one year, i feel fully prepared for whats next in life. The school truly cares for you, and your goals. School spirit is out of this world leaving your college experience unforgettable!” – Breanne from Stockton, CA

Established in 1969 after a merger between the Medical College of Alabama and the Birmingham Extension Center of The University of Alabama, the University of Alabama at Birmingham is a 4-year public institution. UAB is home to 12 colleges and schools...

“…Coming from a different high school system in Washington DC, UAB has reinforced many of the things I have learned in high school. The curriculum is tailored to your specific major, and the professors are great overall! ” – Candace from Washington, DC

The University of Northern Iowa (UNI) is a public university located in Cedar Falls, Iowa. While it started as a teacher training institution in 1876, UNI now offers more than 150 areas of study for undergraduates  spanning from business and...

“…I love the atmosphere here at UNI. The students are amazing and the professors are always there to help. The class sizes are perfect for someone who is looking for a college that has a lot going on but isn't too big.” – Christina from Cedar Falls, IA

Calling Des Moines, Iowa, its home, Drake University is a midsize, private institution of higher learning with more than 70 majors available to its undergraduate students. Cultivated over 130 years of educating, The Drake Curriculum features small,...

“…Drake University is a very prestigious university that helps students excel to their best knowledge. Drake does whatever it can to help students find careers, and advise them in every possible way. Any type of student can excel and succeed at Drake. ” – Shelby from Waukon, IA

Founded by evangelical abolitionists, Wheaton College is a Christian liberal arts college in the Chicagoland area. Wheaton College confers over 40 bachelor’s degrees and offers a Bible-centered general education program called Christ at the Core....

“…Even though I have only been here for one year, I have absolutely loved every minute of my time at Wheaton College. The academics are challenging and all of the professors are very caring. The community that I have found there has quickly become a...” – Emily from Fleetwood, PA

Founded by the Society of Jesus, Fairfield University is a 4-year Jesuit institution in coastal Connecticut. Fairfield provides a liberal arts education and offers degrees in 44 academic majors as well as 16 interdisciplinary majors. As a Catholic...

“…The teachers focus on broadening your view and the extensive core forces you to study fields you would have never considered, but could decide major in.” – Kristin from Martinsville, NJ

Founded by a Presbyterian minister, the College of Wooster is a 4-year liberal arts college in northeast Ohio. Wooster grants bachelor’s degrees in 44 academic majors and every student’s academic career begins with a First-Year Seminar focusing on...

“…All of my friends from high school, and indeed, all of the people I've talked to on the subject agree that The College of Wooster has by far the most challenging and interesting course load of any school they are aware of. The combination of small...” – Scott from Wooster, OH

Lawrence University is a liberal arts college and a conservatory of music located in Appleton, Wisconsin. On a bluff that overlooks the Fox River, the main campus is only one of three locations Lawrence University maintains. The 441-acre Bjorklunden...

“…Lawrence is a great place that suffers, like most other small liberal arts colleges, from an inflated sense of importance. That said, there are great people here in both the student body and the faculty. One thing that makes it stand out is its...” – English major

Whittier College is a private, hispanic-serving institution is located in Whittier, CA, with a mission to "prepare students from diverse backgrounds to excel in a complex global society." The liberal arts curriculum framework is centered around the...

“…The learning environment is more of an intimate setting to where you get to know your fellow classmates and your professors on a individual basis. Due to there being a close knit of us attending the school it is a big family and every one is...” – Joseph from Whittier, CA

Originally founded in 1821 as a Quaker boarding school, Widener University is a 4-year private institution in the Philadelphia metro area. Widener confers undergraduate degrees in over 60 academic majors and minors. In addition, many of Widener’s...

“…Widener University is a wonderful University Filled with wonderful and caring faculty. I am so excited to be apart of Widener's pride and I encourage anyone who is interested in enrolling to go ahead and take that extra step to apply. The programs...” – Maya from Philadelphia, PA

Founded six years before North Dakota achieved statehood, the University of North Dakota is a 4-year public university in eastern North Dakota and the state’s largest institution of higher learning. UND offers undergraduate degrees in over 225...

“…UND is a fantastic place to come and hone your educational foundation. Faculty to student ratios are commendable and professors are most always ready and willing to lend a helping hand to their students. In addition, UND's location is prime for many...” – JH from Grand Forks, ND

The first school chartered after the American Revolution, Washington College is a 4-year liberal arts college on Maryland’s eastern shore. Washington grants bachelor’s degrees in 34 academic fields of study and all students are required to complete...

“…Attending Washington College has taught me more than I ever thought it could and not just in the classroom. First, the professors are always there to help. It is very easy to meet with them if you have a question, concern or just want to chat....” – Sara from Myersville, MD

Lee University is a 4-year institution located in Cleveland, Tennessee. They offer 55 majors on the more than 119 acre campus with the focus of “develop[ing] within the students knowledge, appreciation, understanding, ability and skill which will...

“…Lee University is a private, christian college in Cleveland, TN. Lee University is completely Christ-centered and a great place to be. It has some of the nicest people in the world and, no matter what you did in high school, they will let you in if...” – Jimi from Freeport, FL

Shenandoah University is a 4-year, private institution affiliated with the United Methodist Church located in Winchester, Virginia. Founded in 1875, Shenandoah has grown to include six locations throughout the Valley it was named after, offering...

“…I go to the Conservatory of Shenandoah University and just from my first semester of Basic Acting, I have learned so much. There are two (at least at this time) different first year acting teachers, both have completely different teaching styles but...” – Rebecca from Winchester, VA

St. Olaf College is a 4-year institution founded in 1874 by Norwegian Lutheran Immigrants. Today, St. Olaf maintains its affiliation with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America on its 300-acre campus in Northfield, Minnesota, often called “The...

“…St. Olaf is an incredible school with professors and staff who genuinely get to know the student body. You will not eat in a better cafeteria anywhere! Come find yourself as an Ole and join this incredible community.” – Josh from Beaverton, OR

Founded in 1888, the University of Puget Sound is a 4-year liberal arts college in the Seattle metro area. UPS awards bachelor’s degrees in over 50 traditional and interdisciplinary fields of study and a number of programs feature experiential...

“…Puget Sound aims to make you a well-rounded citizen. Professors all know the purpose of liberal arts studies is to achieve this. Students can and do manage to do a little bit of everything.” – AC

Hawaii Pacific University is a 4-year institution in O’ahu and the largest private university in the central Pacific. HPU hosts colleges of Business, Liberal Arts, Health, Natural Sciences, and Professional Studies. In addition, the HPU campus is...

“…Hawaii Pacific University is one of the most unique colleges I've ever encountered. It's an attractive college to a student like me because I believe that college is more than just good grades, but also about who you know and meet to find connections...” – Ryan from Sheridan, WY

Marymount Manhattan College is a private institution located in New York, New York, that offers a liberal arts and sciences curriculum. Marymount features 30 majors, including its industry-noted performance program, in its three academic buildingers...

“…Marymount Manhattan College is in an ideal location for students interested in all kinds of studies. The college is incredibly helpful in ensuring students get everything they need from tutoring to finding an internship in the city. The professors...” – Brittany from Leonardo, NJ

St. John’s University is a private Catholic university in New York City, in the neighborhood of Queens. The urban, 102-acre campus offers more than 100 degree programs at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels within six schools and...

“…The diversity at this school is very existent. It is very easy to meet different people from different backgrounds. The programs and events at this school are very beneficial to finding a job or starting your career in the future.” – Brittanya from Bronx, NY

Cornell College is a liberal arts institution situated in Mount Vernon, Iowa, that was founded in 1853. Deemed “more selective,” Cornell is one of only 40 schools profiled by Loren Pope's book "Colleges That Change Lives" and also ranks as a top tier...

“…I really enjoy my time in class and the small campus has given me a chance to make a network of friends quickly. The courses are incredibly rigorous and intellectually stimulating, and most of my professors have been reasonable human beings who I can...” – Yolanda from Portland, OR

Founded in 1575 by William, Prince of Orange, Leiden University is the oldest institution of higher learning in the Netherlands with two locations in Leiden and The Hague. A founding member of the League of European Research Universities, Leiden is...

With a campus overlooking its eponymous river, Susquehanna University is a 4-year institution in central Pennsylvania featuring a liberal arts curriculum and pre-professional studies. Susquehanna is home to schools of Business and Arts & Sciences...

“…If Susquehanna University fits your criteria when looking for schools, it is close to guaranteed that you will find it to be wonderful. Don't let the sticker shock get to you- they give good financial aid here. If you're serious about your college...” – Sarah from Pennsylvania

Allegheny College is a 4-year liberal arts college in northwest Pennsylvania dedicated to providing students an education across a variety of subjects. Allegheny grants bachelor’s degrees in 31 areas of study and all students are required to take at...

“…I have learned so much at Allegheny--the professors and students alike are helpful, intelligent, and compassionate. At Allegheny, professors will know you by name and appreciate you for the unique combination of interests that encompass who you are...” – Tashina from Orrville, OH

Founded in 1891, the University of La Verne is a private school in the greater Los Angeles area affiliated with the Church of the Brethren. La Verne encompasses colleges of Arts & Sciences, Business, Education, and Law awarding undergrad degrees in...

“…The University of La Verne is a great university to attend because the class sizes are small enough to be able to interact with everyone, especially Professors. I find that it is easier to learn in a small classroom setting. What I love most about...” – RR from Duarte, CA

Siena College is a 4-year institution located in Loudonville, New York, with a strong foundation in liberal arts education. The 175-acre campus in the Capital Region is home to more than 100 areas of study to choose from and offers both undergraduate...

“…Siena is a decent size college with a beautiful campus. The students are very nice,except if your a commuter then you will have to try to make alot of friends. Teachers are nice for the most part and care for the students.” – Brandon from Cohoes, NY

Founded by six Baptist ministers, Eastern University is a Christian institution in the Philadelphia metro area. Eastern confers undergraduate degrees in over 95 academic fields of study. As a Christian university, Eastern holds chapel services once...

“…Eastern has really taught me a lot not just academically, but also spiritually and personally. One of the biggest lessons I've learned is just how connected everything is. I've learned things in TaeKwon-Do that applied to Psychology that then applied...” – Angelique

Named for a Methodist bishop, Hamline University is a liberal arts school in St. Paul affiliated with the United Methodist Church and the first university founded in Minnesota. Hamline offers undergraduate degrees in over 50 academic fields of study....

“…The professors were amazing! Very helpful.” – Brittany from South Saint Paul, MN

Founded in 1869, Trinity University is a private liberal arts and sciences institution situated in San Antonio, TX. Trinity is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church and offers undergrad degrees in 47 academic majors. All freshmen must take a First...

“…The art program has many fantastic resources and all of the professors are wonderful.” – Lyndsay from Portland, OR

Founded by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Erie, Gannon University is a 4-year Catholic liberal arts college in northwest Pennsylvania and one of 11 Diocesan universities in the United States. Gannon grants bachelor’s degrees in 64 academic fields of...

“…Coming to Gannon is probably one of the best choices I have ever made. The school is great and everyone is so nice. I couldn't imagine myself anywhere else. ” – Kelly

Affiliated with the Churches of Christ, Lipscomb University is a Christian liberal arts institution in Nashville. Lipscomb confers undergraduate degrees in 176 academic areas of study. As a Christian university, Lipscomb holds chapel services twice...

“…lipscomb is an excellent school with a very caring faculty and staff. the christian community here is uplifting and encouraging.” – Jessica from Smyrna, TN

Founded in 1851 by the Society of Jesus, Saint Joseph’s University is a Jesuit Catholic school in Philadelphia. SJU is home to colleges and schools of Arts & Sciences, Business, and Health Studies offering bachelor’s degrees with a core curriculum...

“…Ultimately the learning is all up to the individual so it depends on the students dedication that they have. The teachers are very intelligent and they are willing to help with any problem. There are many different options for the student if he or...” – Tina from Scranton, PA

Loyola University of New Orleans is a 4-year, Catholic university in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Loyola Core and core curriculum operates on the idea of “students as scholars” and centers on five key elements: critical thinking, effective...

“…Loyola New Orleans is an excellent academic institution which is complemented by the smooth New Orleans environment.The people are more than friendly and more than willing to help.” – Ashlin from Metairie, LA

Founded in 1891 by the Free Methodist Church of North America, Seattle Pacific University is a 4-year Christian university in Seattle. With a campus nestled in the north slope of Queen Anne Hill, SPU awards undergrad degrees in 69 academic majors. In...

“…SPU is a truly amazing school. Has a ton of different types of opportunities for everyone. Beautiful school as in the location, landscape and people are extremely welcoming.” – Cydnie - Poulsbo, WA

Named for a famous televangelist, Oral Roberts University is an Evangelical Christian institution in Tulsa. ORU is home to six colleges conferring undergraduate degrees in over 77 academic majors and 65 minors. As an evangelical institution, Chapel...

“…Education of the whole person -- mind, body and soul -- is one of the founding principles of ORU. Through their classes, chapel services and physical education requirements, they serve their purpose and they serve them well. Professors have open...” – Student from Houston, TX

Originally founded as the Childers Classical Institute, Abilene Christian University is a 4-year Christian institution in west Texas affiliated with the Churches of Christ. ACU confers bachelor’s degrees in over 70 academic majors with a focus on...

“…ACU is a small, close knit school on a beautiful campus. Whenever I visited, I was welcomed immediately by various members of faculty and students. Everyone is very kind without shoving the religious affiliation down your throat.” – Maddie from Lubbock, TX

The University of Mary Washington is a 4-year liberal arts college in northern Virginia. UMW is home to colleges of Arts & Sciences, Education, and Business conferring undergraduate degrees in over 60 fields of study. To provide a transition to...

“…the classes here can be very difficult. professors do not spoon-feed their students the answers and expect a lot out of their students in terms of keeping up with course work as well as being able to not only recall facts, but also to be able to...” – caroline

California Baptist University is a private, Christian institution affiliated with the Southern Baptist Conventions. The 160-acre campus in Riverside, CA, features 10 schools and colleges that offer 76 bachelor’s degrees with Christ-centered...

“…CBU has been one of the best experiences of my life. I have been able to meet great people and build long lasting friendships. Most of all CBU makes it easy to build your relationship with God. ” – Alison from Redlands, CA

Founded in 1857, Queens University of Charlotte is a 4-year private school in the Charlotte metro area. Queens grants bachelor’s degrees in 43 academic majors centered around the liberal arts. In addition, the university is home to The Queens...

“…The teachers and curriculum here is outstanding. You will learn important things to help you further your career.” – Brittany from Kings Mountain, NC