College students will now get HOPE GPA boost in science, math courses


College students will now get HOPE GPA boost in science, math courses

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A new policy will help more Georgia Tech and other students keep their HOPE Scholarships. Students will receive a boost to their college HOPE GPA for specific, rigorous STEM courses typically offered during the first two years of college. Each HOPE-eligible college in Georgia will add 0.5 to the HOPE GPA calculation.

There is good news for college students with HOPE or Zell Miller Scholarships who are about to take tough science and math classes. For the first time ever, the state is going to give them a boost in their grades to help them hang onto HOPE, which requires a 3.0 GPA.

Georgia Tech students long lamented they lost their HOPE Scholarships because their science and math classes were tougher than what many peers at other colleges were taking. Their contention: There should be some allowance for demanding courses like computing or organic chemistry.

In 2016, the Legislature said Tech students had a valid point and passed a law that added 0.5 to a B, C or D in approved STEM — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — classes. The boost goes into effect for the first time this semester for students at public or private campuses. To find out which classes qualify for the grade enhancement at eligible Georgia colleges and technical colleges including private schools, go here.

The list shows 107 classes at Georgia Tech and Kennesaw State University. Emory has 149 classes on the list, while the University of Georgia has 147. Georgia State has 72. The courses were selected based on their connection to high demand career fields. Many of the classes are taken by students in their first two years of college.

To read more about the new HOPE GPA boost, go to the AJC Get Schooled blog.

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