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Grinnell Admission Requirements

Grinnell, Iowa

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Chances of getting into Grinnell College

Acceptance Rate

Acceptance Rate
Admission Difficulty for Grinnell College
Measure Difficulty
Admission StandardsElite
Applicant CompetitionVery High
Will you get accepted?

Find out how likely you are to get accepted at Grinnell based on your GPA, test scores, and even extracurricular activities. Then, get custom recommendations for how to improve your odds - completely for free.

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How hard is it to get into Grinnell and can I get accepted? The school has a 23% acceptance rate ranking it #1 in Iowa for lowest rate of acceptance. Last year, 1,847 out of 8,004 applicants were admitted making Grinnell a very highly competitive school to get into with a low chance of acceptance for typical applicants.  Academically, it has exceptionally high requirements for admission test scores, generally admitting students who score in the top 6 percent. Grinnell College typically accepts and attracts "A-" average high school students. Only 25% of those admitted chose to enroll in the school. Most incoming freshmen graduated in the top quarter of their high school class.

Test Requirements

You must submit admission test scores with your application. Grinnell College is not a test optional school. Note: Please consult the school directly to determine if testing requirements are temporarily suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Grinnell SAT Scores

SAT Requirements & Average SAT Score

SAT Range
Applicants Submitting SAT
SAT Scores for Grinnell College
SAT Test 25th Percentile Score
SAT Reading 25th 670
SAT Math 25th 700
SAT Composite 25th 1370
SAT Scores for Grinnell College
SAT Test 25th Percentile Score
SAT Reading 75th 740
SAT Math 75th 790
SAT Composite 75th 1530
Average SAT Score 1450

SAT Scores you need to get in

What are the SAT requirements for students to be admitted to Grinnell College?

Grinnell College typically prefers applicants to be in the top 6 percent of SAT test takers. The school consistently takes SAT composite scores down to 1370 on a 1600 scale, below which admission should be considered a reach. We estimate some students could be accepted with SAT's as low as 1290. The estimated average SAT composite for admitted freshman is 1450 out of 1600. The school ranks #1 in Iowa for highest average SAT composite score. 48 percent of applicants submit SAT scores to the school.

Data Sources, IPEDS for Fall 2019 starting class

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by SAT Score

Grinnell College admission chances by SAT score
SAT Score (1600 scale) Competitiveness Admission Chances
1530 and Above Good >34%
1450 to 1530 Avg + 23%-34%
1370 to 1450 Avg - 15%-23%
1290 to 1370 Reach 9%-15%
Less than 1290 Low <9%
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Grinnell ACT Scores

ACT Requirements & Average ACT Score

ACT Range
Applicants Submitting ACT
ACT Scores for Grinnell College
ACT Test 25th Percentile Score
ACT Reading 25th 32
ACT Math 25th 27
ACT Composite 25th 31
ACT Scores for Grinnell College
ACT Test 75th Percentile Score
ACT Reading 75th 35
ACT Math 75th 33
ACT Composite 75th 34
Average ACT Score 32

ACT Scores needed to get accepted

What are the ACT requirements for prospective students to get into Grinnell?

Admission data indicates that Grinnell regularly accepts students with ACT's of 31 and above. Successful applicants typically send ACT scores in the top 5 percent nationally. We estimate the school accepting minimum ACT composite scores around 30 in some instances. Prospective students submitting an ACT composite of 32 or higher should be in the upper half of applicants - and students with a 34 and above have very competitive chances. The school ranks #1 in Iowa for highest average ACT composite score. 52 percent of applicants submit ACT scores to Grinnell College.

Data Sources, IPEDS for Fall 2019 starting class

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by ACT Score

Grinnell College admission chances by ACT score
ACT Score Competitiveness Admission Chances
34 and Above Good >38%
32 to 34 Avg + 23%-38%
31 to 32 Avg - 17%-23%
30 to 31 Reach 13%-17%
Less than 30 Low <13%
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Grinnell GPA

Estimated GPA Requirements & Average GPA

Avg. High School GPA
Typical High School Grades

What GPA do you need to get into Grinnell College?

Applicants require exceptionally good grades to get into Grinnell. The average high school GPA of the admitted freshman class at Grinnell College was 3.89 on the 4.0 scale indicating that primarily A- students are accepted and ultimately attend. The school ranks #1 in Iowa for highest average GPA. Meeting these GPA requirements alone is not enough to gain admission as Grinnell is a very selective school.

 What do these ratings mean?

*This school has not released high school GPA data for its incoming freshmen. In these cases, CollegeSimply employs an artificial intelligence (AI) process to predict GPA based on this school's test scores and a large sample of other colleges' data. 3.89 is an estimate of the school's average incoming freshman GPA.

Similar Requirements

High School Class Rank

62% of Grinnell College freshman were in the top ten percent of their high school graduating class.

High School Class Rank for admitted Grinnell College students
High School Class Rank Freshmen Within Range
Top 10% of class 62%
Top 25% of class 88%
Top 50% of class 99%
Bottom 50% of class 1%
Bottom 25% of class 0%
Data Source, Wintergreen Orchard House


Admission Statistics

Grinnell College admission statistics
Women Men Total
Applied 4,141 3,863 8,004
Accepted 996 851 1,847
Acceptance Rate 24% 22% 23%
Enrolled 227 233 460
Percent of Admitted Who Enrolled (Admission Yield) 23% 27% 25%
Data Sources, IPEDS for Fall 2019 starting class

Fall 2021 Application Deadline

Applications are Due
Jan 15, 2022
Days left to Apply

Applicants have 45 days left until the Fall 2021 term applications are due on Jan 15, 2022.

Application Fee

The cost for prospective students to apply to Grinnell College is $0.

Admission Requirements

What are the requirements for admission to Grinnell College and what student information is used for admission decisions?

Grinnell College Admission Requirements
Test Scores Required
High School GPA Recommended
High School Class Rank Recommended
Completion of College Preparatory Program Recommended
Recommendations Required
Demonstration of Competencies Neither required nor recommended

Credits Accepted

High School Credits Accepted at Grinnell College
AP Credit Yes
Dual Credit No
Credit for Life Experiences No

Primary data source, U.S. Department of Education https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?id=153384 IPEDS survey data for Grinnell College.


Does Grinnell College prefer SAT or ACT?

48% of students submit their SAT scores to Grinnell. 52% of applicants send their ACT scores when applying.

What is my chance of getting into Grinnell College?

23% of those who apply are granted admission to Grinnell. Admission competition is very high and the college has elite admission standards. See if your grades and scores are good enough for admission.

What SAT score is required for Grinnell College?

The middle 50% of addmitted applicants have SAT scores between 1370 and 1530. 48% of students submit SAT scores when applying. See if your SAT score is good enough for admission.

What ACT score is required for Grinnell College?

The middle 50% of addmitted applicants have ACT scores between 31 and 34. 52% of students submit ACT scores when applying. See if your ACT score is good enough for admission.