Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

“Cum Laude” is Latin for “with honors”, and in high schools and colleges, it takes a great grade point average to become one. A student needs to maintain at least a 3.5 grade point average or higher to graduate with honors or distinction. Although each college may differ on the exact grade point average needed to achieve cum laude, the requirements are sometimes very difficult to maintain.  In addition, some institutions require that a certain percentage of the a student’s grade point average is earned in classes completed at that institution.

Cum Laude (with honors)—3.6 grade point average

Magna cum laude (with great honors)—3.8 grade point average

Summa cum laude (with greatest honors)—3.9 or higher grade point average

To achieve this, your work must be exceptional and near perfect.  You will need to complete all assignments and be rigorous in your studies.  Letting your grade point average slip for even one semester could spell disaster as it is often takes several semesters to see a rise in your grade point average.  My advice is to keep your class load manageable and to make sure you have a work ethic that insures success.


Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial