<span>3.9 GPA Colleges</span>

3.9 GPA Colleges

Grade point average, or GPA, provides a numeric snapshot of high school academic performance by taking the average of all your final grades. A 3.9 GPA conveys that almost every grade you’ve earned has been an A.

Is a 3.9 GPA Good?

GPA is scored on a 4.0 scale. So strictly speaking, a 3.9 GPA is just a tenth shy of a perfect score and demonstrates academic excellence in every class. A 3.9 GPA far exceeds the average GPA that most colleges use as their unspoken baseline for competitive admission (3.0) as well as the benchmark GPA for more selective colleges (3.5). Because of this, a 3.9 GPA makes it possible to be considered for admission at most colleges and universities throughout the country, including at elite schools.

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

If you’re a freshman or sophomore, continue practicing all the good study and testing habits that earned a 3.9 GPA and stay motivated to maintain this academic performance. Since your GPA is in such a good place, it’ll be beneficial to focus some effort on extracurricular activities. Not only will joining after school clubs and organizations help you find something that you’re passionate about, but it will also benefit you during the college admission process. Colleges are looking for well-rounded students, so joining a sport and/or participating in community service projects looks great on your applications.

For juniors, it’s time to focus on preparing for standardized testing while continuing to maintain your GPA. Remember that many colleges weight SAT or ACT scores equally with GPA when considering applications so it’s important to devote enough energy to preparing for an entrance exam. Download a few practice tests and time yourself while taking them to get used to the format. If one’s available, sign up for a test prep class through your high school and put in the effort to make sure your standardized test score lives up to the precedent your GPA has set.

As for seniors, make sure that every part of your application depicts you in the best possible light including the essay, after school activities list, and test scores. Have your college counselor read your essay and offer suggestions for improvement. Meet with visiting college admissions representatives and do some networking to determine what they’re looking for on an application. And if you’re looking for ways to further enhance your academic record, consider taking a class for college credit. Explore your high school’s AP offerings or the “early college” classes offered at the local community college. These courses help show prospective schools that you’re able to handle a college-level academic workload.

What Colleges Can I Apply to With a 3.9 GPA?

A 3.9 GPA qualifies for admission to a large number of colleges and universities and we’ve compiled a sample list of them below. While GPA alone won’t guarantee admission, all of these institutions have a history of accepting students in the 3.9-4.0 range.

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Stanford University is a research institution located in the California town of the same name. The more than 8,000-acre campus features seven schools, the largest of which is the School of Humanities and Sciences, and 80 residential facilities. With...

“…Stanford felt like a new family. The most amazing thing was that everyone there just accepts you for who you are. The weather and the people are beautiful and sunny and warm.” – H. from MN

Founded in 1868, the University of California at Berkeley is the original member of UC System with a campus overlooking the San Francisco Bay. UC Berkeley is known for its liberal student activism, most notably The Free Speech Movement student...

“…Cal is such an an amazing home to thousands of brilliant, dedicated, imaginative individuals. Life in Berkeley has been none other than fantastic. Berkley brings out the best in me, academically, socially, and personally.” – Madison from San Pedro, CA

Founded in 1817, University of Michigan in Ann Arbor is the state’s oldest university. U of M has very high research activity and is a often referred to as a Public Ivy. The university at Ann Arbor offers upwards of 260 degrees for undergraduates,...

“…The University of Michigan is truly an incredible place with incredible people. There is a lot of school pride about both academics and athletics, and although the academics are challenging, there is a good combination of studying and fun. I would...” – Sarah from Troy, MI

Purdue University-West Lafayette is a public research university founded in 1869 and the main campus of the Purdue University System. Purdue is home to 11 colleges and schools including a nationally renowned School of Engineering conferring degrees...

“…Purdue University is filled with surprises. No one would expect a school in central Indiana to be one of the most diverse, most academically rigorous, most involved, healthiest, and inspiring universities in the world. It is literally difficult to...” – Evan from Placentia, CA

Founded in 1746, Princeton University is a private, highly selective, Ivy League, the fourth oldest higher education institution in the nation, and one of the original nine colonial colleges. Princeton features a liberal arts education in the...

“…Princeton has a beautiful campus! The students are friendly and hardworking. You definitely have to work hard to get in!” – Gabriella

The University of Southern California is a high-research institution located in Los Angeles, California, where it’s been educating students since 1880. The university is comprised of two campuses, the main University Park and the Health Sciences...

“…USC is the place for opportunities. You are not only paying for a great education, but also connections and resume builders that will help you get where you want in life. USC is a school for leaders and overachievers. ” – Madison from Los Angeles, CA

The University of Washington is a selective institution located in Seattle, WA, with two satellite campuses in Bothell and Tacoma. At this Public Ivy, sustainability is a major focus and the school has made The Princeton Review Green College Honor...

“…This school is inclusive, and has a great sense of community. I love visiting my friends here. The education is amazing.” – Peyton from Ellensburg, WA

The University of California in Davis is a public institution in northern California and one of the largest universities by enrollment in the UC System. UC Davis is home to four colleges conferring undergraduate degrees and six professional schools....

“…In a fast pace quarter system it's easy to fall apart, UCD is very well organized and everything is easy to obtain. They want you to graduate, this campus is large and friendly, you get use to the bikers flying by! ” – Danielle from Napa, CA

The University of Georgia is a land- and sea-grant public research university in Athens, GA. Founded in 1785, University of Georgia is one of three public universities to hold the title of the oldest public university in the US. With 17 different...

“…The University of Georgia has a beautiful campus that gives you a peaceful, relaxing feeling. Downtown is within walking distance where there are many different types of restaurants, a movie theater, book stores, and shops. The employees of UGA are...” – Nicholas - Hawkinsville, GA

The University of California in Irvine was founded in 1965 in the town and state of the same name, and is the youngest member of the Association of American Universities. This high-research institution offers 92 majors and 86 minors and the campus is...

“…It is a beautiful campus with the best types of psychology classes for me out there. It really fits my academic goals.” – Debbie from Murrieta, CA

The University of South Florida is a public research university located in Tampa, FL, that offers more than 180 majors and concentrations. Ranked on multiple lists for its research efforts, USF’s Office of Undergraduate Research allows all citizen...

“…It is a beautiful campus and will make you proud to be a bull. There is always stuff going on around campus and a lot of fun ways to get involved. Academics are taken seriously and managable with work. ” – Brenna from St. Petersburg, FL

Founded in 1787 as the Pittsburgh academy, the University of Pittsburgh is a 4-year state-related research institution. Pitt is composed of 16 colleges and universities granting undergraduate degrees in numerous academic majors and minors. The Pitt...

“…Pitt literally has something for everyone. There are majors/minors/certificates in nearly anything you could think of, over 400 clubs, and Pittsburgh is a city that offers a wide variety of living arrangements, tons of restaurants, and entertainment...” – Angelica from Pittsburgh, PA

Auburn University
Auburn University, AL

Auburn University is a 4-year public research institution and the second largest university in Alabama. Auburn encompasses 15 colleges and schools offering undergraduate degrees in over 140 academic majors. Outside of the classroom, Auburn is home to...

“…auburn has something special about it that i cannot quite put into words. you have to experience it to understand what people mean by the auburn family, and after you are there, you will never be the same. i have learned the value of being an auburn...” – Sara from Auburn, AL

Vanderbilt University was founded in 1873 as a private research university in Nashville, Tennessee. Academically, the university focuses on an interdisciplinary approach,  encouraging students to take courses from any of the 143 areas of study. The...

“…Vanderbilt University is an institution geared towards challenging its students academically in order to ensure a successful future. However, there are resources such as 24-hour tutoring and extensive office hours to help with the rigorous work. With...” – C from Georgia

Named for a well-known abolitionist and philanthropist, Johns Hopkins University is a private institution in Baltimore and the first research university in the United States. JHU confers degrees and certificates in over 260 academic programs....

“…Johns Hopkins offers rigorous academics and research opportunities, and caters to a wide variety of academic interests. The smaller size of the school makes it feel like a home and connects you to the rest of your peers. There is a sense of unity...” – Vanessa from Thousand Oaks, CA

The Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, also known as Virginia Tech, is a 4-year public research university in western Virginia. Virginia Tech encompasses nine colleges offering bachelor’s degrees in 110 academic majors. To promote...

“…I am a transfer student from George Mason, and I have never regretted my decision! There is so much school spirit here, and no matter who you are or where you are from, you will find your niche at Virginia Tech. There are so many resources here...” – Nicole from Blacksburg, VA

Emory University is a liberal arts institution located in Atlanta, Georgia, with a second campus in Oxford. The 600-acre campus in the Druid Hills neighborhood is home to four undergraduate and seven graduate colleges, as well as over a dozen...

“…Emory is surprisingly the perfect grounds for culturing new ideas. Even though it doesn't have a football team, Emory is still high in spirit and makes up for it in swimming and soccer. Above all, Emory is the perfect combination of nature-esque...” – Sindhu from GA

The University of San Diego is a private research university affiliated with the Roman Catholic church. USD offers 42 different bachelor's degrees and 54 minors, in addition to various study abroad programs, and more than half of the student body...

“…The school has a gorgeous campus and a chapel, so many people have weddings and quinceañeras here. The food is way better than other schools. The classes are small and most of the teachers are really helpful if you just ask. ” – B

The University of Rochester is private, research university highly ranked in the National Universities list by U.S. News & World Report. It operates under the mission "Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and Make the World Ever Better" and students can...

“…The Open Curriculum serves the purpose for student to explore ad take their academic path into their own hands. The University is known for its music school: Eastman School of Music. An Awesome Science and Engineering College, with the added bonus...” – Orin from Brooklyn, NY

Originally founded as a school for math and science teachers, Stony Brook University is a 4-year public university on Long Island and part of the State University of New York system. Stony Brook is home to 12 schools and colleges conferring degrees...

“…The campus, really nice... The professors, friendly if you know how to network and talk to them... The people here, really friendly and getting to meet/know new people isn't a task at all. The school is very nice, they provide fun activities almost...” – Joe, On Campus, Stony Brook University

Florida International University is the only public research university in Miami. FIU offers bachelor’s degrees in over 190 academic fields of study. In addition to classroom facilities, the FIU campus houses the International Hurricane Research...

“…On a Scale of one to ten I give Florida International University an eight. FIU deserves an eight because they really care about the student and try and help in everyway they can to make sure each and every student is successful. They provide...” – Saxon from Tampa, FL

Brigham Young University-Provo is a private research institution located in Provo, Utah, and founded by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. BYU offers study abroad programs through their satellite campuses in more than 20 sites,...

“…Provides an optimal education at a fantastic price. The people are great and the spirit of the university is empowering. Incredible preparation for life in this fast-paced world.” – Nate from Houston, TX

One of two polytechnics in the CSU System, the California Polytechnic State University, more commonly known as Cal Poly, has a competitive admissions process for its programs, which focus in arts, technology, and sciences. The university is located...

“…Cal Poly is fantastic for education, social life, and extracurricular activities. My classes have always been great with good teachers and interesting coursework. It's also so much fun, from the party scene to opportunities to get involved on campus!” – Zoe from Santa Barbara, CA

The University of California-Riverside is a public institution on 1,200 acres of land in Southern California’s Inland Empire. A part of the UC system, UCR is home to colleges of Humanities, Engineering, and Natural Sciences conferring undergraduate...

“…I absolutely love UCR because of its diversity in the people, the events, and the numerous other entertainment and involvement options there are here. The people here are nice, motivated, and willing to join you in almost anything. We all are...” – Lessllie from Ontario, CA

Carnegie Mellon University is a research institution located in Pittsburgh, PA. Founded by steel magnate Andrew Carnegie in 1900, CMU is labeled the #24 University in the World by Times Higher Education and has been rated #25 in National Universities...

“…Carnegie Mellon University offers an intense four years of training and education for all its students, regardless of their major. Each and every student is immeasurably passionate about their field of study. After graduation, students come out in...” – Austin from Shaker Heights, OH

Founded in 1809, Miami University is a 4-year public research institution in southwest Ohio and the state’s second oldest university. Miami of Ohio confers bachelor’s degrees in over 120 fields of study. For recreation, Miami is home to a unique...

“…miami university is a beautiful campus full of amazing professors with tons of opportunities. although it may not seem like a good fit for someone who doesn't fit into the miami stereotype, everyone can find their place. there are countless ways to...” – courtney from fairborn, oh

From its main campus located atop a hilltop in Wisconsin’s state capital, the University of Wisconsin-Madison is a 4-year public institution and the flagship campus of the UW system. Founded in 1848 at the same time that Wisconsin achieved statehood,...

“…Uw- Madison is a fantastic school. The academics are strong, there is always something fun to do, the school spirit is remarkable, and on top of it al you live on a beautiful campus. I don't know any one that dislikes their experience here.” – Cordell from Barneveld, WI

East Carolina University is located in Greenville, NC, and is comprised of 13 colleges. This public research university offers 84 bachelor's and 71 master's degrees, and claims a spot as the state leader in distance educated by providing 90 online...

“…East Carolina is one of the best universities in North Carolina! It's a hidden gem! It has so much to offer! You will never be bored here and you will find the classes challenging and rewarding!” – Kristyn from Holly Springs, NC

Founded by Baptists in 1833, Mercer University is a private non-denominational institution in central Georgia. Mercer houses both the largest pharmacy school and the oldest college of nursing in Georgia as well as one of only four medical schools in...

“…Attending Mercer University is one of the best decisions you can ever make. The environment is nice, friendly and there are many fun things to do around campus. The price is really expensive but it is not unexpected considering it is a private...” – Mercer Student

Butler University is a private, liberal arts institution located in Indianapolis, Indiana, minutes from downtown. BU's 295-acre campus houses 6 academic colleges, Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Business, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Communication,...

“…Butler has a community that truly cares about each and every one of its students. The faculty really get involved in their student's academic journeys, and the opportunities that Butler has to offer are very accessible for any student looking to get...” – Lauryn from Elkhart, IN

The College of Charleston, founded in 1770, is a public university and is the oldest campus in South Carolina. The university offers 61 undergraduate majors and 78 minors from six schools, plus 24 master's degree programs and 10 graduate-level...

“…The College is a great place to open your mind and see the world for all of the wonderful things it has to offer. College of Charleston professors welcome students with open arms and the student body is more than enthusiastic about being a cougar. I...” – Victoria from Branchville, SC

Chapman University is a private, liberal arts institution in Orange, California, that offers 110 areas of study through 11 schools and colleges. Chapman is also home to several independent research centers, as well as creative research centers,...

“…Chapman is a small school with lots of friendly familiar faces. Chapman has great enthusiastic professors that are very personable. Chapman is really a school that is all about you. ” – so you cant stalk me on facebook

Elon University is a selective, liberal arts institution located in central North Carolina. The 656-acre Greensboro campus hosts six schools and a number of academic ceenters, which include the Center for Enviornmental Studies, the Doherty Center for...

“…This school is everything. I'm an actor and I couldn't ask for better training, more talented peers, or more knowledgable professors. Plus, the campus is all sorts of gorgeous. ” – Christine from Raleigh, NC

The Pratt Institute is a private college based in Brooklyn, NY. Pratt offers more than 25 undergraduate degree programs and concentrations, more than 26 graduate degree programs, and six programs leading to an Advanced Certificate award. The 25-acre...

“…Innovative and explorative in everything that is taught within the arts. Fantastic opportunities to excel if the student accepts the challenge to grow and learn about their artistic process. Great community of students and relationships with...” – Elsa from Highland, MD

Texas Tech University is a 4-year public research university and the flagship campus of the TTU System. Texas Tech encompasses 12 colleges and schools and is the only Texas college to feature an undergraduate university, law school, and medical...

“…With over 150 majors, 500 student organizations, and opportunities to conduct undergraduate research and study abroad, Texas Tech University enables students to pursue their unique interests while gaining a quality education. Students at Texas Tech...” – Nicole from Albuquerque, NM

The largest public university in New England, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst is the original campus in the UM System. UMass is a land-grant university with the “Highest Research Activity" and the U.S. News & World Report ranks the UMass...

“…Due to the wide range of educational opportunities--whether those are research-based, scientific, liberal, political or extra curricular--The University of Massachusetts Amherst ensures that there's a niche designated for every type of student. With...” – Ashley from West Yarmouth, MA

Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is the oldest continuously operating technological research university in the United States. The main RPI campus in Troy, NY, is situated on 275 acres featuring 746 labs, studios, and technology...

“…The academics are very difficult but rewarding. The professors know their stuff and are very accessible outside of class room hours. The students are all brilliant but are typically quite socially though less so than other major tech universities.” – Benjamin from Scotts Valley, CA

Formed by a merger between Marymount College and Loyola University, Loyola Marymount University is a private school affiliated with the Jesuit religion and one of the largest Roman Catholic universities on the West Coast. Spread across 142 acres in...

“…LMU has a beautiful campus with lots of potential for student involvement in clubs, sororities or fraternities while maintaining high academic standards. It is a jesuit school, but there is no mandatory religious involvement.” – Kyana from Los Angeles, CA

The United States Air Force Academy is a military training institution in central Colorado and the youngest of five American service academies. USAFA confers bachelor’s degrees in 31 academic majors and all students are expected to complete a core...

“…This school is not for everyone, however it is definitely worth it. There is a lot of commitment when it comes to joining this academy; you lose more time with friends and family than a student at a normal college, and the academics are quite tough...” – Andrea from Usaf Academy, CO

Belmont University is a 4-year liberal arts institution in Nashville and the largest ecumenical Christian university in the United States. Belmont is home to 10 colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in more than 90 fields of study,...

“…It's like living in a bubble of happiness. Everyone and everything is aesthetically and personally beautiful, and everyone plays beautiful music. Also, it's hipster central.” – Grace from Nashville, TN

Situated between the Everglades and the Gulf of Mexico, Florida Gulf Coast University is a public institution in southwest Florida. FGCU hosts Colleges of Business, Education, Arts & Sciences, Health, and Engineering conferring undergraduate degrees....

“…Florida Gulf Coast is an amazing school. Everyone is spirited, and everyone is sweet. There are a lot of options to get involved, and there is help ready for you whenever you need it. Oh, and the campus is beautiful!” – Courtney from Sarasota, FL

Reed College is an liberal arts and sciences institution in Portland, Oregon. The college is dedicated almost exclusively to academia and features bachelor's degrees in 40 majors and programs with no social clubs, fraternities, or varsity athletic...

“…Great college, but not for everyone. A lot of people either make it or break it the first semester. You have to take this college seriously or you won't last long.” – Katelyn from Bartlett, IL

Brandeis University is a private, nonsectarian institution founded by the Jewish community and named after the Supreme Court’s first Jewish justice. The 235-acre campus is located in the suburbs of Boston, Massachusetts, and home to more than 100...

“…in three sentences, brandeis is academically rigorous - the science courses in particular are taught at a much higher level here than at other schools. the social life is atrocious because parties end early and are usually pretty lame but the people...” – Christina from Waltham, MA

The University of North Florida is a 4-year public institution in Jacksonville and a member of the State University System of Florida. UNF is home to five colleges of Health, Business, Arts, Computing, and Education hosting degree-granting programs....

“…University of North Florida is about the student experience and what the University can do for you. The accessability and caring of the faculty and staff gives you a great academic experience, and the up and coming status of the school gives students...” – Page from Longwood, FL

Founded by Jesuits in 1818, Saint Louis University is a private research institution and one of the oldest Catholic universities in the United States. SLU is home to 11 colleges and schools conferring undergraduate and graduate degrees. For students...

“…The campus is truly beautiful as well as the chapel. Some people worry about the fact that the University is in Saint Louis, but SLU has impressive security. A great place to stay close to your faith and grow. ” – Roxie

Created by the merger of Lewis Institute and Armour Institute, The Illinois Institute of Technology is a scientific and technical research institution in Chicago. IIT hosts eight colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 40 fields...

“…The Illinois Institute of Technology is a one-of-a-kind school with its fairly small student:teacher ratio and its challenging academic programs. Its location is ideal as it is not in downtown Chicago but just a few minutes from it. Studying at IIT...” – Gabriel from Joliet, IL

Stetson University is a private university in DeLand, FL, with regional campuses in Tampa, Gulfport, and Orlando. Stetson is home to a college of Arts and Sciences and was also the first institution in the state to host schools of Business...

“…It is a very clean campus. Quiet atmosphere and great places to study. Great staff everyone seems very nice.” – Jessica from Deland, FL

Founded by the Presbyterian church, Davidson College is a 4-year private liberal arts college in southern North Carolina. Davidson confers bachelor’s degrees in 29 academic majors and 40 minors. Davidson also features an Honor Code forbidding...

“…Davidson is a hard school academically, meaning there is no such thing as an easy A. The students at Davidson have a work hard play harder mentality. The teachers are great and easily accessible for the most part. ” – Jamie Johnson

Founded in 1886, Winthrop University is a 4-year public school in the greater Charlotte area. Winthrop consists of five colleges offering bachelor’s degrees in over 40 fields of study and is also home to Think College, a program that offers post...

“…Winthrop University's campus is beautiful and peaceful. The professor's are all very knowledgeable on the subjects they teach, and easy to get along with which is a plus. This is a great place for first time college students to learn and gain...” – Taylor from Lancaster, SC

Founded by missionaries of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit, Duquesne University is a 4-year Catholic institution in Pittsburgh and the only Spiritan university in the country. Duquesne is home to nine schools of study emphasizing the liberal arts...

“…Duquesne University is the most challenging and amazing school I can imagine. It is everything I expected before coming into college. The social and academic life are both surreal.” – Erin from Londonderry, NH