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What's your minimum GPA and SAT score?

We don't have a minimum GPA. We don't have a minimum SAT score.

As strange as these answers sound, they're both true. Students are more than the sum of two numbers, no matter how important those two numbers may be. A cumulative GPA, for example, only reveals so much; it says little about the difficulty of a student's course load, or whether a student's grades have improved over time, or the level of grade inflation (or deflation) in a student's school. If we established a firm minimum GPA, a point below which no applicant would have any chance of being admitted, we'd miss a fair number of students who might make U.Va. a better, stronger place.

The same is true for SAT scores. Most people who work in admission at highly selective universities believe that standardized testing is a useful but imprecise instrument, an axe, not a scalpel. Setting an absolute minimum would be asking these tests to do something they weren't designed to do.

Of course, we do use GPAs and SATs. All other things being equal, applicants with good numbers stand a better chance of being admitted; and because our applicant pool is broad and deep, most admitted students have excelled in school and scored well on the SAT (see our Profile for more information). But we don't have set minimums for either, and we try hard to take into account all of the information we see in each application.

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