Your academic statistics: GPA, Credits, etc.

In this article, you'll learn the definitions for the various academic statistics you'll find in Populi.


GPA stands for Grade Point Average, which is an average of your course grades over a particular time period. To create a GPA...

  1. After your courses are finalized and your final grades are entered, those course grades are translated into number values on a scale from 0 to 4.
  2. The grade value for each course is multiplied by the number of credits or hours that course is worth. For example, if you take MATH101 for 3 credits, your grade value will be multiplied by 3.
  3. Those multiplied grade values are then added together.
  4. The sum of the multiplied grade values is finally divided by the total number of credits or hours; the resulting number is your grade point average.

This article includes a simple example of how a GPA would be calculated for one academic term.

There are a few different kinds of GPAs that refer to the time period in which your course grades are being averaged:

  • Term GPA: Your GPA for the courses you've finished in one particular term.
  • Cumulative GPA: Your GPA for all the courses you've finished in a particular program. This includes courses across all terms, resident courses, and transfer courses.
  • Resident GPA: The cumulative GPA of all the courses you've finished at your current school.
  • Transfer GPA: The GPA calculated from the transfer courses (if any) your school has accepted and applied to your program.

Units: Credits and Hours

Units refers to credits and/or hours, which are generally used to indicate the quantity of instruction, coursework, and time that is required in order to complete a course. Your program measures your progress in terms of one or the other according to your school's academic catalog, and in order to earn a degree, you'll be required to pass (complete) a certain number of units.

There are a few versions of hours you might see on your transcript or degree audit:

  • Academic hours: The number of hours you will earn for completing the class.
  • Attendance hours: The number of hours you attended (or are expected to attend) your class.
  • Clinical hours: The number of hours spent in a "clinical" setting practicing the things you were taught in class.

Units also have a "status", which refers to whether or not you've completed them.

  • Attempted: You were enrolled in a course but it has not yet been recorded whether you completed it (or you completed it but did not pass it).
  • Earned: You completed a course and passed it, and earned some or all of the units used to measure your progress.

Additionally, you will see things like Term credits/hours/units and Cumulative credits/hours/units in various places. As with GPA, these refer to the units you took or earned in a term or across your time at your school.

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