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Q: Compare German and American Grading Systems ( Answered,   1 Comment )
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 Subject: Compare German and American Grading Systems Category: Reference, Education and News > Education Asked by: rheinland-ga List Price: \$15.00 Posted: 09 Sep 2003 14:11 PDT Expires: 09 Oct 2003 14:11 PDT Question ID: 253960
 ```I am trying to find a comparison of the german and american grading scales to list on my resume in Germany. What I am finding impossible to find is a reliable scale (with a citable source) that will allow me to "translate" my american grades to the german scale. Namely, that my 4.0 from high school will be looked upon with deep skepticism if translated to a 1,0 because that has been explained to me as "impossible" from german friends. My major goal is to be able to write on my resume something like the following: My High School, final GPA 4.0 (equivalent to x,x on the German grading scale) My University, final GPA 3.60 (equivalent to x,xx on the German grading scale)```
 ```Hello Rheinland, While your German friends say it is impossible, I say it is not. But a 100% accuracy in comparison between the two grading systems cannot be expected. For sure, the 1 to 5 and 4 to 0 systems are different and exact equivalents are hard to find. But I will give a try on comparing the German and American grading systems. Explanation of the German examination types and grading system http://www.uni-augsburg.de/english/programs/explanation.shtml 1.0 or 1.3 1.00 - 1.50 1.00 - 1.50 very good 1.7 or 2.0 or 2.3 1.51 - 2.50 1.51 - 2.50 good 2.7 or 3.0 or 3.3 2.51 - 3.50 2.51 - 3.50 satisfactory 3.7 or 4.0 3.51 - 4.00 3.51 - 4.50 adequate below 4.0 below 4.0 below 4.5 fail Here is how it is compared to the letter grading system in the same web page: 1.00 - 1.50 = A 1.51 - 2.00 = A- 2.01 - 2.50 = B+ 2.51 - 3.00 = B 3.01 - 3.50 = B- 3.51 - 4.00 = C 4.01 - 4.50 = D (only Staatsexamen) Here is the basic American model: Fulbright Commission Argentina - The American Grading System http://www.fulbright.edu.ar/html/english/eic/us_gra_sys.html GRADE MEANING QUALITY POINTS A Superior 4 B Above Average 3 C Average 2 D Below Average 1 F Failing 0 So if we were to compare the grading system, I came out with this calculation: AMERICAN GERMAN PROBABLE COMMENT 4 1 Excellent 3.5 1.5 Very good 3 2 Good 2.5 2.5 Satisfactory 2 3 Average 1.5 3.5 Below Average 1 4 Poor .5-0 4.5-0 Fail The above however would be only an approximation, and should not be used as an official conversion standard of grades across systems. Let me use a local example. I studied college at the Ateneo de Manila University here in Quezon City, Philippines, and we used the following grading system, based on the American model (I took this from my transcript of records). There is a comparison to the 1-highest/5-lowest system: GRADE COMMENT QPI APPROX EQUIV IN 1-5 SYSTEM A Excellent 4 1 B+ Very Good 3.5 1.5 B Good 3 2 C+ Satisfactory 2.5 2.5 C Sufficient 2 3 D Passing 1 4 or Incomplete F Failure 0 5 Compare this to a nearby school, the University of the Philippines Diliman. It used the 1-highest/5-lowest grading system, but I've even heard of grades of 1.25, 2.75, 2.25, and not just 1, 2.5 or 2, and you can see how confusing this gets when you try to translate it into the American system. Thus I can say that the attempt of the person who copywrote my school's transcript document was also an approximation, and can't be made into an official basis. If I were to transfer school, for example, my grades would certainly be interpreted by the receiving school personnel on their own discretion, regardless of the guides given by the former school. Note that the use of letter grades can differ between schools. See in my grading system, there were no A-s or B-s in the official grades. But there are schools who use such grading systems: American University Washington grading system http://www.american.edu/american/registrar/transcripts/grading.htm Grade Quality Points (QP) 4-point 3-point * A (Excellent) 4.0 3 A- 3.7 B+ 3.3 B (Good) 3.0 2 B - 2.7 C+ 2.3 C (Satisfactory) 2.0 1 C- 1.7 D (Poor) 1.0 0 F (Failure) 0 -1 X (administrative penalty) 0 Thus, you can see, trying to find an exact equivalent of grades in other schools presents uniquee problems, simply because schools are free to use their own grading systems. Much as I might like to have a 'universal' grading system, I have heard of no such effort, and schools in certain countries use the grading system they please. However, in your case, if your 4 is the highest in your grading system, then I believe it compares with the German 1-highest. I'm sure though that when you get to the lower grades, there'll be a problem in conversion. Perhaps you could approach your school's registrar, or someone else you know who works in the same capacity, and ask his or her opinion on the matter. For interest's sake, here is another unique grading system from another American high school, though it somewhat adheres to the usual model: Overland High School grading system http://blazernet.ccsd.k12.co.us/GeneralInformation/grading_system.htm A-Excellent B-Above Average C-Average D-Below Average E-Passing with credit, indicates effort rather than attainment F-No Credit S-Pass or Pass/Fail U-Fail or Pass/Fail I-Incomplete AU-Audit, no credit WP-Withdraw Pass WF-Withdraw Fail Google Search terms used: germany us grading system german american grading system american high school grading system I hope this has been a most helpful answer. If you need anything else, or have a problem with the answer, do please post a Request for Clarification and I shall respond as soon as I can. Thank you.```
 ```Dear Rheinland, Basically Techtor is right, but I have yet another suggestion for you - instead of "translating" the grades. You could write - if we're refering to CV or a similar description of yourself - the percentage you were ("the highest 87%"), or in the case of a university degree, refer to the known Latin terms: summa cum laude, cum laude, magna cum laude. You could see an example at the University of Connecticut site (please note that this changes from university to university and from one department to another): http://www.ucc.uconn.edu/~regsdh06/gradhono.html```