What GPA and SAT Scores Do You Need to Get Into Dartmouth?

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

View of the Baker-Berry Library on the campus of Dartmouth College with students sitting on the grass.

What GPA and SAT Scores Do You Need to Get Into Dartmouth?

If you are looking to attend one of the very best undergraduate programs in the United States but are also looking to enroll in something that is closer to a liberal arts college learning experience as opposed to a massive university, you very likely have Dartmouth College on your list! In fact, Dartmouth is the only college – and not university – that is part of the highly selective and prestigious Ivy League. But what GPA and SAT scores do you need to get into Dartmouth?

At AdmissionSight, we work with some of the most intelligent and determined high school students in the world and help them make sure that they are able to accomplish their college admissions goals.

It’s why we are so proud of the fact that 75 percent of the students that we have worked with end up getting into Ivy League schools, like Dartmouth, or other top-10 programs elsewhere in the United States.

On top of that, we think it is important to offer high school students the crucial information and tools that they need to succeed when it comes to pursuing an education at some of the best schools in the world.

A tree of fall colors filling most of the left half of the frame with the view of the library bell tower and blue sky on the campus of Dartmouth College.

For many, that information gathering process begins with finding out what the typical high school student has achieved during their high school years before getting accepted to a top school.

For that reason, that is where we will begin. Let’s get started on breaking down what GPA and SAT scores do you need to get into Dartmouth!

Dartmouth’s GPA requirements

Before familiarizing themselves with the current college admissions landscape, some students believe that Dartmouth requirements include a concrete GPA that must be achieved in order to be considered by the admissions officers at the school.

The truth is that students should not consider the highest GPA possible to be a requirement, and they shouldn’t really be looking at the lowest GPA to get into Dartmouth either.

In fact, the safest place to begin your search is to find out as much as you can about the Dartmouth average GPA. After all, most schools will offer information on the average GPA of the students that they accept, and that number can offer any student interested in getting into a school like Dartmouth a realistic benchmark that they will want to hit or, ideally, exceed in order to improve their chances of getting into the school.

These days, the information that we have gathered points to the average GPA of high school students that end up getting accepted into Dartmouth to be an incredibly high 4.11 GPA. This 4.11 Dartmouth average GPA for high school students that get accepted tells us two very important things right off the best.

First off, it tells us that the students that get into Dartmouth are, quite simply, the best of the best. A 4.11 GPA is going to, without a doubt, put any student at or near the very top of their high school class in terms of performance.

Without a doubt, Dartmouth is looking to only accept students that are able to prove that they take their academics incredibly seriously. No matter how intelligent someone is, earning a 4.11 GPA in high school is going to be incredibly difficult without some proven tools and tactics to study, retain information, and succeed on midterms and final exams. Dartmouth is absolutely looking for students who have learned such skills before they head to college.

Secondly, the 4.11 average GPA tells us that the students that are getting accepted into Dartmouth are taking loads of advanced courses that come with weighted grade point averages out of 5.0 rather than the unweighted 4.0 GPA. These weighted courses include things like honors classes, AP classes and IB classes.

If you are a student that is committed to getting into some of the best schools in the world, such as Dartmouth, enrolling in as many advanced courses in high school as possible is a really important thing to do. One reason is, of course, because you are going to want to get as high of a GPA as possible to improve your chances of beating the Dartmouth College acceptance rates and get in.

You are also going to want to do so because taking, and excelling, in advanced courses in high school can do a lot in terms of providing proof to admissions officers at top schools that you will be able to handle the challenges and demands that come with enrolling at a top college or university.

With a tree in front, the Baker-Berry Library can be seen on the background.

Think about it. The top colleges and universities are the schools that attract the most determined and intelligent students. This leads to a highly competitive classroom experience. Moreover, these schools are often homes to faculty that make up some of the world’s leaders in their respective skills.

These kinds of professors are not going to have the time to teach students how to succeed in the classroom. The expectation is that the students who are accepted to schools like Dartmouth already have those skills on hand by the time they arrive on the school’s campus.

So, by taking advanced courses in high school, a student is able to prove that they do indeed possess those skills and already know how to learn at a level that is well above that of a typical high school classroom.

So if you are curious about how to get into Dartmouth, remember that it is much less important to learn about the lowest GPA to get into Dartmouth and much more crucial to focus more on the Dartmouth average GPA.

Now that you know that, let’s get into the Dartmouth SAT scores that we are familiar with.

Since you are already well aware of the Dartmouth average GPA, it should not come as much of a surprise that the average Dartmouth SAT scores are similarly incredibly high. In fact, the average SAT score at Dartmouth College is a 1500 out of the perfect score of 1600.

The 25th percentile score for students that get into Dartmouth is 1450, and the 75th percentile SAT score is 1550. This means that if you earn a 1450 or below on the SAT, your score will likely not be good enough to help you get into Dartmouth. The exact opposite can be said if you earn a score of 1550 or above.

Moreover, while we are talking about standardized testing and the average score of those tests in regard to admissions at Dartmouth, it is really important that we update students on what is currently going on in regard to standardized tests and their importance in the undergraduate application process overall.

As a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, countless schools across the United states have decided to adopt a standardized test optional policy for the time being. Dartmouth is one such school, and here is what the school’s admissions office has to say about their current policy regarding standardized tests:

“Dartmouth College is test optional for the Class of 2026.

“Testing is not the ultimate factor in evaluating an application. We look at every applicant in the context of available opportunities and efforts. Testing, in conjunction with your academic record and recommendations, help us better understand your academic preparation.

“If you submit multiple scores from the SAT or ACT, we will accept superscored testing, i.e. your highest section scores in either test, regardless of the test dates.”

As you can see from this message, the school is happy to accept applications that do not come with standardized test scores, there is still a clear way in which taking the SAT and earning a fantastic score can help improve your chances of getting into a school like Dartmouth. For example, consider the fact that the entire college admissions process is built around admissions officers trying to “better understand your academic preparation.”

If one student sends in a great GPA, fantastic extracurriculars, wonderful letters of recommendation, and powerful personal essays, but no standardized test scores, another student who submits all of the effort mentioned materials as well as a fantastic SAT score may receive a more favorable final decision on their application than the previously mentioned student.

Of course, students who send in standardized test scores are not going to receive any official or explicit advantage, but when it comes to offering the admissions officers proof that you are ready to take on the rigorous and competitive curriculum at Dartmouth, there is no doubt that earning a strong SAT score can help you succeed in that endeavour. Now that you know what GPA and SAT scores do you need to get into Dartmouth? It’s time for their acceptance rate.

Dartmouth College acceptance rate

So, you now have the definitive answer to the question, “What GPA and SAT scores do you need to get into Dartmouth?” Knowing that information has very likely left you with another question regarding admissions at the school. That question of course has to do with the school’s acceptance rate.

In the 2021 college application cycle, the overall acceptance rate at Dartmouth was an incredibly competitive 6.2 percent. The regular decision acceptance rate was an even more restrictive 4.5 percent.

With that being said, the early admissions application rate for students that applied to Dartmouth was a much more manageable 22.2 percent! So, how do those numbers stack up to the acceptance rates at these seven other schools that make up the Ivy League? Take a look at the table below to get a better idea of what you can expect in terms of acceptance rates at the age schools within the Ivy League:

Table with information about Ivy league students.

As you can see from this table, Dartmouth’s overall acceptance rates pegs it right about smack-dab in the middle between the most competitive and least competitive acceptance rates in the Ivy League.

Even though it may be average within the Ivies, it is crucial to keep in mind that an overall acceptance rate of 6.2 percent still places Dartmouth at the very top of the list when it comes to the hardest schools to get into in the entire United States.

That is why recording a very strong GPA and really strong standardized test scores (if you choose to take one) is so important to improve your chances of getting into the school.

How to improve your chance of getting into Dartmouth

When it comes to getting into highly competitive colleges and universities, one of the most important tools that high school students can possess is specific knowledge about how they can improve their chances of getting into a given school.

For schools like Dartmouth, there are some pretty key ways that any student can boost their chances now that you know about What GPA and SAT scores do you need to get into Dartmouth?.

Let’s break down some of the most important things together.

Earn great grades and test scores

Given the nature of this breakdown overall, it should by now be pretty obvious that earning great grades and test scores in high school is one of the most important things that any high school student can do if they are interested in attending one of the top universities or colleges in the United States.

A happy female student while reading a letter with good news.

Give yourself the best chance at getting the highest GPA possible by taking your study seriously from the very first day of your freshman year of high school.

On top of that, you will want to be sure to enroll in advanced courses covering subjects that you are either naturally adept at or especially passionate about. Getting great grades in AP or IB courses throughout high school could be a major factor in helping you get into the school of your dreams.

Apply by early admissions

Dartmouth has a binding Early Decision application option for students who know for certain that the school is their top choice compared to all other schools that they plan to apply to.

Early Decision admissions give high school students the opportunity to complete and send in their full application months ahead of the regular decision due date. Of course, this requires students to get started on their Dartmouth application as quickly as they can, as they will also have to send in all of the related Anne required documents that are part of the application process.

With that being said, if you know that Dartmouth is your top choice, you should absolutely consider applying via Early Decision. After all, consider the difference that we went over previously in regard to the overall acceptance rate and the early decision acceptance rate.

While the overall acceptance rate at Dartmouth last year was a highly restrictive 6.2 percent, the early decision acceptance rate was a far more manageable 22.2 percent. That means that simply by applying early, students are able to more than triple their chances of getting into Dartmouth.

Of course, you need to be sure that Dartmouth is your top choice because the early decision admission option is binding. That means that if you apply via early decision and end up getting into Dartmouth, you will have to withdraw all of your other applications to other universities and enroll at Dartmouth.

Craft incredibly personal essays

The final tip that we will go over in this piece has to do with the personal essay section of your application to Dartmouth. Year by year, the personal essay section of the application process has only increased in importance.

In fact, now that many schools across the United States have chosen to adopt a standardized test optional policy, many see the personal essay section as the second most important part of a student’s application behind solely the student’s high school grade point average.

A man sitting in front of a laptop and writing a composition for essay.

These essays provide you with an opportunity to let the admissions officers at Dartmouth know who you are beyond the tangible information on your application. You get the chance to let them know what your passions are, what your goals are for your undergraduate education beyond, and why you believe that attending Dartmouth will help you achieve all of those goals.

After all, admissions officers are not interested in accepting a student’s grade point average or standardized test scores, but are instead interested in accepting the student themself.

Making it clear that you would become a productive and positive member of the Dartmouth community, both during your years at the school and when you become a member of the passionate alumni community, can help your application jump off the page and improve your chances of getting into the school.

Will you get into Dartmouth College?

Without a doubt, getting into Dartmouth is a tall task for even the most accomplished high school students. However, it is certainly not impossible! Every year, hundreds of students get acceptance letters from Dartmouth.

If you are someone who is determined to attend Dartmouth and want to learn more about how you can improve your chances of getting into the fabulous schools, contact AdmissionSight today to schedule a free consultation.



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