As of the 2006 school year, the average college grade point average in the United States was approximately 3.11. The grade point average among secondary institutions has steadily risen since the 1950s, except for a brief dip in the 1970s. In the 1950s, the average college G.P.A. was 2.52.
The rising grade point average has put the spotlight on how the numbers are calculated, and the fact that they are not standardized across institutions. A 3.5 G.P.A. at a private university may indicate a much different level of understanding and academic rigor than a 3.5 G.P.A. at a local community college. Academic experts believe that student expectations and an over reliance on students' evaluations by their teachers is partly responsible for the rise.