hi everyone I’m Tara and today we’re going to talk about high school statistics everybody’s favorite thing and our idea with this it’s just kind of to demystify some things and talk about our general experience with SAT AACT GPA stuff like that these weird numbers that feel like they come to define you while you’re applying for college and we have a bunch of different perspectives because we’re from different parts of the u.s. one of us is an athlete I’m obviously not. should be a cool video oh and I also just want to say like once you get to college none of this stuff matters at all I think you’d be super hard-pressed to find anybody at Stanford that cares what your SAT was or thinks that it’s in any way a measure of your intellectual ability or academic skill or anything like that okay. one of the things that I want to stress is that Stanford practices something called holistic admissions and holistic admissions basically means that more cardless of your grades GPA test scores whatever you’re not going to be eliminated from the process just because you don’t meet a certain standard in one of those areas yeah. in terms of GPA I graduated with a 3.97 unweighted actually the school I went to freshman year he did not give grades because they were like a cool hippie school. I didn’t get grades for freshman year and I was like nope you know I don’t like this. I transferred um and I had grades for the following three years and oh the reason that I have a 3.97 and a 4.0 is because sophomore year my Mandarin teacher did not like me at all like we just did not get along she was not vibing with me which is fine um and she gave me an a-minus which was not well deserved because I worked really hard in that class and obviously looking back it does not matter that much like an a-minus does not matter but at the time I was like ah this the end of the world and I like the obnoxious child that I was went and tried to get a change by talking to the Dean and all this that I am embarrassed about looking back because obviously it does not matter it does not matter if you get an a-minus it’s fine okay. in high school I did not have a perfect GPA I had a 3.97 my first B that I got I was a sophomore in high school and I was taking a class that was honors I think history and it was pretty challenging for me and the teacher and I like didn’t get along necessarily she didn’t love me and I got a B first semester and I remember being super freaked out and it turned out to not be a big deal at all okay hi guys.
I went to cried on my high school which is a public school in Southern California and I would say it was pretty rigorous pretty competitive the vibe was like definitely you know which a piece are you taking how many are you taking what you get on this test like this and that and. it was definitely an interesting environment to be a part of overall I did pretty well I think I got around a four point for weighted GPA by the end of my four years there looking back I was a bit of a psycho maniac I took 13 AP classes yeah my biggest regret was AP Physics II I absolutely crashed and burned in that class our final project for AP Physics was to build a windmill and it wasn’t supposed to be too difficult I was supposed to like boost our grades and we were graded on how many times the windmill turned Jessica and my windmill was the only windmill in all sections of the class that it didn’t even do singular rotation and. we didn’t just fail the project she gave us a zero but she was like here’s your zero percent yeah those were the glory days for sure. I ended up taking the SAT just because I think the SATs skews a little bit towards people that are good at math and I think that a CT is more if you’re good at reading really quickly and going through stuff quickly. I just like took the SAT kind of by default as with whatever I was to do this and I end up taking it three times and ended with a super scored seven 97 90 on both sections but that was only like after taking it many times and like sometimes they do better on one section or the other. definitely recommend taking it as many times as you can because like basically the SAT is just a measure of how much you’ve practiced and prepared that’s why it’s stupid is like it just used towards people that have more money and more time and resources to prepare more but if you have the option to take it multiple times I definitely would in terms of the acte and the SAT standardized testing I personally took the a CT and I took it three times ended up increasing my score by about five points and. I think that it’s a really good idea to take it you know a couple of times and improve as much as you can but that being said having worked with and talked to admissions officers it really prefer that you only take it three times or less. they want you to be doing things outside of school and outside of preparing for college that you’re really passionate about. I definitely recommend taking a slightly lower score and focusing on other parts of your application rather than making testing an extra curricular. I have a son factory you know um I’m actually I recruited athlete. if any of you out there watching or wondering about test scores and things like that it turns out they actually won Louisville about the expectations needed. I actually started pretty hard I got above the Stanford average AC T which I think at the time was like 33 my main tip which cannot be overstated is take a million bazillion practice tests like seriously run a bootcamp do it to your eyes bleed I don’t care there are no shocks on the AC T if you put in the preparation I’m. why is you guys changing lives okay. when you apply to Stanford you have the option of submitting a subject test score or AP or IV tests. I chose to not submit any of those personally I took two subject test I took the SAT Math one I think it’s called and then I took the SAT English subject test and I did not perform as well as I wanted to on either of those and.
I chose not to submit them I actually studied really hard for them and I just still didn’t do very well and. I decided that they weren’t reflective of my abilities and I didn’t really want admissions officers to see them. I did not submit them and I think that people oftentimes think that you have to submit subject tests in order to look impressive to kind of good schools but that’s not necessarily true we didn’t submit them to any of the schools that I was applying to it didn’t absolutely require them and in terms of subject tests I ended up taking five I think my lowest score was on the Mandarin one this is like a theme for me doing that in Mandarin if I got a 750 on that and then I think I got 800 not 790 chem 780 bio 780 literature and 750 Mandarin if you happen to be a good test taker like me then take them but if it’s gonna take you a lot of time to prepare for them then I would say don’t because it doesn’t matter that much um and in terms of ApS my school didn’t really offer that many AP classes just like a couple.
I took those and I self studied for a few AP tests. I end up taking five or I think maybe six or seven actually and I got fives on all of those alright. for AP tests and subject tests to start subject tests I did take a few but I didn’t end up submitting them because they weren’t really necessary for a recruitment but I think look more into that I know that they really loved the math – one for some reason. during the math maybe give that one ago whatever um AP tests I yeah I took a lot of those I don’t really know how much they even mattered but do your best on them and something about AP test is if your school doesn’t offer subject or an AP and you’re interested in the in that class and the topic I would self study it and sophomore year I was really interested in AP psych and. I just got one of those Barron’s review books and I just studied it and took the test. don’t be limited by what your school offers and doesn’t offer and if you’re interested in an AP go for it one thing I wish I had known when I was applying to schools is that where you end up and what scores you get on your a CT or your SAT or any type of standardized test is not a reflection of who you are and definitely does not define you. in terms of allocating time because obviously you have a limited time spend more time on activities and research and developing your story and less time on like studying super hard to get an extra ten points on a subject test because in the scheme of thing they don’t care like just imagine being an admissions officer and you have to read 200 applications every week you’re not gonna be like oh well this kid has 790 on her chem a subject test. definitely admin you’re gonna be like struck by stories that are unique and interesting and students that seem genuinely intellectually curious alright I hope that was helpful I’m sincerely sorry if it wasn’t if I were to leave one last nugget of inspiration it would be to be true to yourself and that’s it okay now but honestly like who you are if you’re weird that’s great you know Stanford likes weird people couldn’t already tell fine stuff you’re passionate about and you my friend are gonna be just fine