04 Nov
Pros of Getting a 4.0
Cons of Getting a 4.0
Increases Confidence
Miss Other Opportunities
Helps College ApplicationsTakes a lot of Time
Teaches PerseveranceCauses Stress
Teaches Value of Long Term GoalsMay Not Help you at in the Long Run
Improves TalentsYou may not take certain classes that are valuable. 
Forces Student to be OrganizedAllow Grades to Define your Worth

At my junior high graduation, I watched as several of my friends received rewards for a 4.0 GPA. If they could do it, then why not me? At that moment, I decided I would receive a 4.0 GPA in high school. Never before had I thought about receiving perfect marks on a report card, but this graduation started an obsession that ended in a 4.0. In college, I abandoned that expectation and just settled on getting good grades. These experiences have led me to wonder, is a 4.0 GPA worth it?

Pros of Getting a 4.0 GPA

  1. This goal increases confidence. Like most teenagers, I was incredibly insecure and needed to be good at something. With each new final term report card, my confidence in myself increased. 
  2. 4.0 GPA makes it a lot easier to have a spot in the college of your choice. GPA is one of the many factors that colleges look at when sorting through applicants. I felt I could control the GPA in such a manner that I would never be turned away from a college on the merit of grades. 
  3. This goal taught perseverance. Have you ever counted out every point to make sure that your grade doesn't slip to an A-? I have! I remember studying a phycology final for weeks because I had to score top marks to receive that coveted A. Have you ever done an eight-hour cramming session to pass a Chinese test? I have! I had to persevere through so many obstacles to achieve that 4.0. 
  4. I was able to learn how to set a long-term goal with many checkpoints. After achieving this goal, it became easier to set long-term goals. I had to plan out every semester to make sure I was on track for my final destination. Through this process, I learned what actions I have to take to succeed. 
  5. I improved my talents. In junior high I would practice the violin enough to get a B. This was no longer the option. I spent countless hours practicing, and in doing so got better at the violin.  
  6. Getting a 4.0 forced me to be more organized. Procrastination was no longer an option. Forgetting assignments was no longer an option. Wasting precious time was no longer an option.  

Cons of Earning a 4.0 GPA

  1. I missed out on countless opportunities. Earning a 4.0 takes loads of time. The time I took studying for perfect marks was family time missed, social time missed, and relationships missed. Was my report card worth what opportunities I missed?
  2. A 4.0 took so much time.  How much time are you willing to spend to bump an -A to an A?
  3. This goal caused an insane amount of stress. I remember crying as I finished a five-page paper at 3:00 a.m. I remember sobbing when I thought my A had slipped to an A- in statistics. I remember sleepless nights thinking about failing. It was nothing less than an unhealthy nightmare. 
  4. It didn't open as many doors as I thought it would. I told myself that if I could get a 4.0 GPA, I would receive a full-ride scholarship. Some of my friends received these types of scholarships, but I didn't. Many scholarships also look for high ACT scores, and I struggle with timed tests.:) Disclaimer: Some colleges are better than others at giving out scholarships for GPA.
  5. I often opted out of more meaningful classes to save my GPA. I enrolled in multiple AP classes and took one of the few college classes my school offered. However, I avoided the oil painting class because the teacher was a harsh grader. Why would I chance to lose my 4.0 because of art? I regret this. I love art and know now that I missed out.
  6. In the end, a 4.0 shows little. I began to let my grades define my worth as a person. When I received my first A- in college, I felt like I was a complete failure. These feelings followed me throughout my college career, even though my marks never fell below a B. My college GPA didn't mention that I was more well-rounded. My GPA didn't show my work life, social life, and the new life I had discovered. How much does a GPA show?

"Our goal is to help the world make decisions with a list of Pros and Cons. We invite all to add to our lists to help others make the most educated decision possible. We are all in this world together to help each other and learn from what others have learned from their lives journey." - Pros and Cons Team

Written by: Kristen 

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