Harvard University: 2023 Requirements, Scores & GPAs | CampusReel (2023)

Harvard University: 2022 Requirements, Scores & GPAs

This is the go-to guide for getting into Harvard University. We suggest you read until the end... Not only will we layout the exact GPA and test scores you should aim for when applying to Harvard University, but we’ll also offer creative ways to help your application stand out from the pack. We breakdown Harvard University statistics better than any article out there and show you how these have changed over time. Also, make sure to check out Harvard University on CampusReel to see what it’s really like here.If you're interesting in transferring to Harvard University, the read our transfer guide.You can also use the below calculator to help determine your likelihood of acceptance at Harvard University

What GPA Do You Need To Get Into Harvard University?

Harvard University’s average GPA is 4.18. Harvard University does require GPA.This average GPA means Harvard University is brutally selective - the most competitive applicants in the world are already applying to the school, in hopes of taking up residence in Cambridge, and, somehow, you need to be better. Generally speaking, if your GPA is not at least equal to 4.18 then Harvard University may be a reach. However, Harvard University considers the ENTIRE application - we can make up for a weak GPA with more factors that we’ll discuss below. If your GPA is equal to or greater than 4.18, you’re sitting right in the sweetspot.

*BEFORE CONTINUING PLEASE NOTE: GPA and “prestige” DO NOT mean a college is right for you. Harvard University may seem amazing on paper, but you may hate it... That’s why 700,000 students transfer colleges every year - they end up going to the wrong school. It’s crucial to watch the videos on CampusReel and make sure you can envision yourself on Harvard University’s campus. These Harvard University admission statistics do not sufficiently tell you what a college or university is like.

What Is Harvard University’s Acceptance Rate?

Last year Harvard University’s acceptance rate was 5.58. However, check out how the acceptance rate has changed over time.

As you can see, Harvard University is a little easier to get into than last year.

Acceptance rate alone does not indicate your likelihood for getting into Harvard University - it’s a very high level understanding of the true competition. Use the acceptance rate as a general guide for curating a list of 10-15 schools that fall into different ranges of competitiveness. Then, use the below data to get a deeper understanding of how your application will compare to the rest of the pool.

Acceptance Rate5.0 %5.0 %5.58 %

Does Harvard University Require Test Scores?

Harvard University requires that you either take the SAT or ACT. See the table below for how Harvard University’s accepted students have performed on both tests. You may be wondering how many test scores should you submit. Generally, don’t freak out about taking the test too often. Industry consensus is that you can submit up to 6 tests as a reasonable limit.

Harvard University SAT Requirements

Harvard University’s average SAT score is 1515 - this is the sum of the math and reading portions of the SAT (the 1600 scale). Check out the below table for a deeper look into how students performed - it’s also very interesting to look at the average test score over time. The trend over time helps give insight into whether Harvard University is getting more or less competitive.

25th Percentile75th PercentileAverage
2019 Total143016001515
2018 Total---
2017 Total---

Harvard University’s average SAT score is 1515. To be a competitive applicant for Harvard University your SAT score should come close to the average. If you’re closer to the 1430, you’re likely going to have a tougher time getting accepted. To consider Harvard University a “target” school (one that you are likely to get into) you should aim for a score of 1600.

Will You Get Into Harvard University?

Calculate Your Chances

Harvard University ACT Requirements

Harvard University’s average ACT score is 100. To be a competitive applicant for Harvard University your ACT score should come close to the average. If you’re closer to the 96, you’re likely going to have a tougher time getting accepted. To consider Harvard University a “target” school (one that you have a good chance of getting into) you should aim for a score of 105.

25th Percentile75th PercentileAverage
2019 Total96105100
2018 Total---
2017 Total---
Will You Get Into Harvard University?

Calculate Your Chances

How Hard Is It To Get Into Harvard University?

As you can see from the data above, Harvard University is exceptionally difficult to get into. Not only should you be aiming for a 4.18 but also SAT scores around 1515. Getting into Harvard University is no easy feat and you will need to set yourself apart with more than just numbers and data. Read on to learn how.

Harvard University Requirements

Now you know where you need to be for getting into Harvard University from a grade and test score perspective. Let’s quickly outline what else you’ll need to provide for your application to get reviewed, and then we’ll move onto the most important section: differentiating your app.

School RankRecommended
School RecordRequired

How to get into Harvard University

Follow these steps to maximize your chances of getting into Harvard University. Everything you read above will help prepare you for what you need to achieve to have a shot at Harvard University, but these steps will take you even further in applying that knowledge and differentiating your application.

Main Academic Excellence that is in line with Harvard University admission standards.


  1. Score at least a 1515 on the SAT or 100 on the ACT.
  2. 2

  3. Maintain a GPA of at least a 4.18.

Join Extracurriculars that Align with Harvard University’s Values.


  1. Join your school band, a sports team or another group activity. If Harvard University values music heavily, for example, then try to participate in an organization related to that topic.
  2. 2

  3. Volunteer in your hometown. Cambridge has tons of ways to be involved beyond just the college. Harvard University wants applicants that are also good ambassadors for the school - they want students who will give back to the local community and broader Cambridge area in general.
  4. 3

  5. Spend your summer doing something that speaks to your values, personal growth, leadership qualities and other less quantifiable characteristics. Harvard University needs to see past your test scores and grades - they need to know that you will be a valuable and contributing member of their community. You are more than grades and test scores - your experiences should demonstrate that.

Prepare Your Application


  1. Write a stellar essay that shows Harvard University something they can’t figure out from the other parts of your application. For a detailed guide on writing the best college essay, check this out.
  2. 2

  3. Get teacher recs that speak to your character. If you know what you’re majoring in and include that in your Harvard University app, try to have at least 1 recommendation from a teacher in that department.
  4. 3

  5. Apply Before the Deadline. Too many students wait until the last minute to submit their application, and too much can go wrong during this precious time window. Since many students are applying on the last day, it’s possible that Harvard University’s own system crashes. Don’t risk the added stress this can cause - submit your app a few days early.

Related College & Universities:

Admissions Requirements to Yale University Admissions Requirements to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Admissions Requirements to Tufts UniversityAdmissions Requirements to Dartmouth College Admissions Requirements to Brown University


What GPA do you need to get into Harvard 2023? ›

Students need a minimum GPA of 4.0 on a 4.0 scale (97-100%) for admission to Harvard. Admitted students reflect a median GRE score of 300 and GMAT score of 730 for admission to Harvard University. Indian students need a TOEFL score of 100 or higher for admission to most of the programs.

What GPA is good enough for Harvard? ›

You should also have a 4.18 GPA or higher. If your GPA is lower than this, you need to compensate with a higher SAT/ACT score. For a school as selective as Harvard, you'll also need to impress them with the rest of your application. We'll cover those details next.

What are the chances of getting into Harvard 2023? ›

2023 Ivy League acceptance rates
Name of College2023 Acceptance Rate2022 Acceptance Rate
4 more rows
Apr 21, 2023

Does Harvard require SAT for 2023? ›

Is Harvard test optional for 2023? Harvard University has recently announced that it will be test-optional for the 2023 admission cycle. This means that students applying to Harvard for the 2023 academic year will have the option to submit SAT or ACT scores, but they are not required to do so.

Will a 3.7 GPA get me into Harvard? ›

Harvard does not have a minimum GPA requirement. However, Harvard is highly competitive, so it may be challenging to get in with a 3.7 GPA. The average GPA for entering Harvard students is 3.9.

Does Harvard accept 4.3 GPA? ›

Last year, the reported average GPA of an admitted high school student at Harvard was a 4.04 out of 4.0, what we call a “weighted” GPA. However, unweighted GPAs are not very useful, because high schools weight GPAs differently. In truth, you need close to a 4.0 unweighted GPA to get into Harvard.

What is the lowest SAT score Harvard accepted? ›

There's no absolute SAT requirement at Harvard, but they really want to see at least a 1460 to have a chance at being considered. Exclusive: Want to learn how to improve your SAT score by 160 points? Download our free guide on the top 5 strategies you must be using to improve your score.

What is the lowest GPA ever accepted to Harvard? ›

They do a very comprehensive survey of all freshmen each year, and in the past 2 years the lowest GPA of any admitted freshman has been 3.3.

Can a 3.5 GPA get me into Harvard? ›

A 3.5 GPA will be highly competitive, and admission can be reasonably expected at many colleges. Still, it's not the most competitive at places like Harvard, Yale, and Dartmouth, which, on average, accept students with GPAs exceeding 4.0.

How many essays does Harvard require 2023? ›

General Tips. Harvard College has three supplemental essay prompts, two limited to 150 words and one of unspecified length. The only required essay among these is one of the two short-response essays, but we strongly advise that all applicants attempt each of the three essays.

How many essays for Harvard 2023? ›

In the 2022-23 there are three Harvard supplemental essays. This first essay is required. Technically, the other two essays are optional. However, these are pretty much required if you want serious consideration for admission.

How many AP classes should I take for Harvard? ›

Be cautious of overloading your schedule: Harvard would rather see a high GPA with 4 AP courses each year than a low GPA and a daunting 8 AP courses. Consider your AP, honors, and regular options carefully each semester based upon your own self-knowledge, schedule flexibility, and course offerings.

How many essays does Harvard require? ›

Harvard requires two 150 word essays and one non-required third essay. There is also a 50-word supplement for International Students.

What high school courses are required for Harvard? ›

Four years of English with a strong writing component. Four years of mathematics. Four years of science, including biology, chemistry, physics, and an advanced course. Three years of history, including European and U.S. history.

What ACT score do you need to get into Harvard? ›

Admissions Summary

Harvard College is extremely selective with an acceptance rate of 4%. Students that get into Harvard College have an ACT score of 34–36. Regular applications are due January 1.

Is a 3.9 GPA good enough for Ivy League? ›

A weighted GPA between 3.9 and 4.0 should put you in good standing at most Ivy League schools, as long as you've taken the most challenging curriculum available to you.

What's an excellent GPA? ›

In most cases, a 4.00 GPA is considered to be excellent. However, the number of students from a student's high school who also have 4.00 GPAs may affect whether that score is considered good or average.

Is a 3.98 weighted GPA good? ›

But in most cases, a weighted grade of 3.5 is considered good, and will at least allow you to apply to most major universities. A weighted grade of 4.0 or higher is very good and will be an impressive part of any application.

Can you get a 5.0 GPA? ›

Students in an AP class with weighted grading receive a five-point weighted average for each of the four-letter grades: As, Bs, Cs, and Ds. As a result, a student who only takes AP classes and receives A's will have a 5.0 GPA.

What is the highest GPA ever? ›

Normally, you would expect the highest score to be the 'perfect' 4.0 score, however, there are several things that a student can do to receive an even higher score. For example, one student actually managed to get a 10.03 GPA score. He did this by taking 17 advanced classes at his school, which awarded him many points.

What is the highest GPA possible? ›

The unweighted scale is most common, and the highest possible GPA on this scale is a 4.0. The unweighted scale doesn't take the difficulty of a student's classes into account. Weighted scales are also used at many high schools. Typically, they go up to a 5.0.

Will a 1600 SAT get me into Harvard? ›

As we said, admission to Harvard is extremely competitive. Even with a perfect SAT score of 1600 and a GPA of 4.0, your chances of admission are about 10%.

Does Harvard require an essay? ›

Harvard requires the submission of the personal essay with your application. We also offer an opportunity to add an additional information.

Can I get into Harvard with low GPA but high SAT? ›

While your SAT would make you competitive for the Ivy League, it will be harder to overcome your low GPA at highly competitive schools. They simply have too many applicants with both high test scores and high GPAs to admit many people with a serious deficiency in either. That 2360 alone won't get you into Harvard...

Does Harvard kick out bottom 2% GPA? ›

Academic Standing Requirements for the Undergraduate Program

If your GPA falls below 2.0, you are in poor academic standing. If you remain in poor academic standing for the following two terms, you are required to withdraw from the degree program. Your transcript will reflect this new status: RW (required to withdraw).

What is the best lowest GPA? ›

If that's the goal, to have tons of options for higher education, a 2.0 GPA won't result in that. Unofficially, 2.0 is the lowest GPA accepted into a standard college, so while there's a chance that college admission is possible, it's not likely at more than a few institutions.

Does Harvard look at weighted or unweighted GPA? ›

This is because all the Ivy League universities take into account a weighted GPA over an unweighted one.

What is the hardest college to get into in the world? ›

1. Stanford University. Topping the list of the hardest school to get into in the world is Stanford. It has been featured top of this list for several years and no other university anywhere in the world has managed to replace it yet.

Can you get into Harvard with average grades? ›

The average high school GPA of admitted students at Harvard is around 4.2. 73% of students had a GPA of at least 4.0, indicating that admitted students typically mostly earned A grades in high school. If you're studying the IB, this translates to scoring mostly 7s and achieving a minimum score of at least 42.

What GPA do you half to have to get into Harvard? ›

The GPA requirements for Harvard University are between 3.9 to 4.1. You will need an incredibly high GPA and will likely be graduating at the top of their class in order to get into Harvard University.

What does Harvard look for in essays? ›

No matter what you write, be sure that your essay is specific and descriptive. It should reveal information about you and your personal growth, and it should show Harvard University why you would be a great addition to their campus.

How long does a Harvard essay take? ›

The ideal length for your essay is about 500 words, any longer and your essay will be hard to read; if it's too short, it will feel a little incomplete.

How many times can you apply to Harvard? ›

Each application must be unique, containing a separate statement of purpose, transcripts, recommendations, and test scores; each application also requires a separate application fee. Please note that each submitted application counts toward the lifetime maximum of three applications per person.

Is 1400 good enough for Harvard? ›

While a 1400 makes you eligible to apply to places such as Harvard, Yale, and the University of Pennsylvania, it won't make you a competitive candidate.

When can I apply for Harvard 2023? ›

What are the admission dates for Harvard University for 2023?
Round (For Fall 2023)Application DeadlineAdmission Decision
Round 1Sep 07, 2022Dec 08, 2022
Round 2Jan 04, 2023Mar 29, 2023
Apr 7, 2023

Can you finish Harvard in 3 years? ›

The vast majority of Harvard University students complete their degree programs within 4-6 years.

Is 4 AP classes enough for Harvard? ›

Freshmen who have taken College Board Advanced Placement exams need a total of four full credits to be eligible for Advanced Standing. Credits are earned by scoring 5 on a minimum of four AP tests.

Is 7 aps enough for Ivy League? ›

Aim for four to eight AP exams in your junior and senior years. For competitive Ivy League schools, admission officers also want to see AP courses for core subject areas and additional courses. If possible, aim to pass about seven to 12 AP exams if applying to these highly selective schools.

Can you get into Harvard without additional essay? ›

The Harvard supplement essay, as it's known, is completely optional—you may, but do not need to, write this essay and submit it with your application.

How do you get accepted into Harvard? ›

There is no formula for gaining admission to Harvard. Academic accomplishment in high school is important, but the Admissions Committee also considers many other criteria, such as community involvement, leadership and distinction in extracurricular activities, and personal qualities and character.

What questions does Harvard ask in an interview? ›

Why do you want to go here?” “Can You tell me about yourself?” “What do you want to study at Harvard and why?” It's good to know what you will say for questions like this.

What kind of students does Harvard look for? ›

In our admissions process, we give careful, individual attention to each applicant. We seek to identify students who will be the best educators of one another and their professors—individuals who will inspire those around them during their College years and beyond.

What types of students go to Harvard? ›

Harvard is looking for students who are more than just academic achievers. They seek outgoing leaders who can positively impact their campus and the world. Admitted students typically have a strong record of involvement in extracurricular activities, such as sports, music, theater, community service, or other pursuits.

What ACT score is needed for full ride scholarships? ›

Shoot for at least a 28 on the ACT or above 1300 on the SAT. Some scholarships allow for flexibility, so check the particular scholarship, but these numbers generally give you the most options. Encourage your student to also pursue a high GPA or even 4.0, especially their senior year.

Can I get into Harvard without SAT? ›

When you apply for admission, you can choose whether or not our review of your application will include your standardized test scores (SAT and ACT). If your scores already are on file before you apply and you choose at the time of your application to proceed without scores, we will not consider those scores.

Does Harvard accept B students? ›

Does Harvard Accept B Students? Yes, just like I mentioned above, it's completely possible to get admitted into Harvard University with B grades. Admissions are not reserved only for straight-A students. Personally, I wasn't a straight A student in my college, before I applied to Harvard for my masters degree.

What is the average GPA 2023? ›

What is the Average GPA in High School in 2023? The average GPA in US High Schools is 3.0. This number varies by gender – the average female GPA is 3.1 and the average male GPA is 2.9.

What is Harvard ranked in 2023? ›

Harvard University has been placed at the 5th position in the QS World University Rankings 2023. In 2022 as well, the university was placed at 5th position only. However, from 2019 to 2021, Harvard University QS ranking was #3.

Will Harvard accept a 4.0 GPA? ›

While there is no GPA requirement to apply to Harvard, the average unweighted GPA of incoming students is 4.18.

What is an impressive college GPA? ›

Most commonly, students graduate cum laude (Latin for "with praise") when they earn a 3.5-3.7 GPA, magna cum laude ("with great praise") when they earn a 3.7-3.9 GPA, and summa cum laude ("with highest praise") when they earn a 3.9 GPA or higher.

Is 3.7 A competitive GPA? ›

A 3.7 GPA substantially clears the unofficial benchmark that most colleges use for competitive admission (3.0) and is also higher than the baseline average for more selective schools (3.5).

What is the hardest college to get into in 2023? ›

Harvard, Stanford and Princeton, unsurprisingly, are America's toughest colleges to get into in 2023, according to Niche's most recent rankings.

How many people got accepted to Harvard 2023? ›

On March 30th, 2023, Harvard University announced that it had offered regular admission to 1,220 applicants for the Class of 2027, bringing the total number of admitted students, including those from the early action process, to 1,942 with an acceptance rate of 3.4%.

What kind of essays does Harvard look for? ›

Harvard requires the submission of the personal essay with your application. We also offer an opportunity to add an additional information.

Is 1500 good enough for Harvard? ›

There's no absolute SAT requirement at Harvard, but they really want to see at least a 1460 to have a chance at being considered.

What is the lowest GPA for Harvard? ›

After being admitted with a 3.0 or higher grade-point average (GPA), you must maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 to be considered in good academic standing. If your GPA falls below 2.0, you are in poor academic standing.

How do you get a 5.0 GPA? ›

Students in an AP class with weighted grading receive a five-point weighted average for each of the four-letter grades: As, Bs, Cs, and Ds. As a result, a student who only takes AP classes and receives A's will have a 5.0 GPA.

Is 3.8 GPA too low for Harvard? ›

GPA only seems to have any impact if you are above 3.8 or below 3.0. The acceptance rate for Harvard is higher in the 3.0 to 3.39 range than 3.4 to 3.79. This is likely due to low sample size in the ... Here are the top schools with a freshman class with an average high school GPA of 3.8: School name.


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