Q&A: That One B on My Transcript

How do admissions officers look at transcripts? I received one B in my entire high school career thus far (3.96 unweighted) but am ranked 10 out of 469. I received a B in the first semester of the class, but then improved and received an A the second semester. Will colleges see that and take that into account? I know I may sound like an over-worried college-applying senior, but it’s been something that’s been gnawing at me. Thanks!

You do sound like an over-worried college-applying senior! Colleges, even the most selective Ivy League institutions, do not expect perfection! Furthermore, aside from your senior year mid-term report, colleges only request your final, year-end grades. They won’t even see this B on your transcript.

In terms of your rank, a 10 out of 469 rank is fantastic. You are in the top 2% of your high school class. Again, very competitive for any college or university in the country.

Remember though, colleges are looking for so much more than a perfect transcript with top test scores. They are looking for an interesting applicant who has pursued her passions throughout high school. The best thing you can do on your college application is convey who you are as a person, quirks and all. Not only will you present yourself in the most honest, genuine way, but colleges will also be excited that they have the opportunity to see who you are. Good luck!