GPA: Grade Point Average. For most colleges this means a cumulative grade point average. For a cumulative grade point, each grade a student is given is assigned a number value, those numbers are added, and divided by the total number of grades for an overall number. An example of a GPA on a 4.0 scale (most common) is 3.2.
RIC: Rank In Class. Many schools put students in an order based on their cumulative grade point average. Where students falls on this list in comparison to their peers (number of students in their grade) is their class rank or rank in class.
An example of a student at a school where there are 412 other students in her grade: 57/412.
CEEB Code: College Entrance Examination Board (CEEB) is an organization of educational organizations (schools, college, etc) and each institution is assigned a number (or code). This number is then the CEEB Code for that school. For example, the Rock Island High School CEEB Code is 143725. College applications often ask for a high school CEEB Code.
ACT: “a see tee” originally an abbreviation of American College Testing is a standardized test for college admissions. ACT’s Definition. Wikipedia’s definition. The highest score a student can score on the ACT is a 36.
SAT: “ess a tee” first called the Scholastic Aptitude Test, then the Scholastic Assessment Test, now does not stand for anything, but is a standardized test for college admissions run by CollegeBoard. College Board’s Definition. Wikipedia’s definition. Most colleges are only interested in the Math and Verbal scores. Students can score up to 800 in each of these sections for a total possible score of 1600.
FAFSA: “faf – sa” Free Application for Federal Student Aid is a form students complete to apply and find out if they qualify for student financial aid. FAFSA.gov. Wikipedia’s definition. Each school year has a specific FAFSA form for that year and families have to complete the FAFSA
each year and for each student in their family interested in financial aid.
FAFSA PIN: Families who file the FAFSA online need a Personal Identification Number (PIN) that serves as their electronic signature on the FAFSA. Both a parent and a student each get unique FAFSA PIN. Learn more at Federal Student Aid PIN Website.
FERPA: The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act is a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. In short, schools are not allowed to share student records without written permission. This is particularly important for parents to recognize. Once a student is 18 years old – the school is legally not allowed to share information about a student’s school record (including grades) with parents or anyone else. There are some exceptions – see the link above for further details.
What other acronyms are second nature to admissions junkies that real world people struggle with? Please let me know.