Excel for iPad helps students stay on top of their GPA

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How often have you found yourself trying to calculate your GPA? Or let’s be honest…how many times have you tried to figure out the minimum grade you need to get in a course to maintain your GPA? If this sounds familiar, here is Excel for iPad to the rescue with some great features to help you make your own GPA calculator—so that you don’t struggle anymore trying to answer these questions.

Build your GPA calculator layout

When you start a new workbook, first focus on building the layout before filling in the formulas. This gives you a better sense of how the final result will look. With Excel for iPad this is easy since you’ll find all your favorite formatting options from the desktop on the mobile ribbon. For our GPA workbook, merge cells, cell styles and cell borders are used to create the layout, which includes a title and some visual separation.

GPA Calculator 1

You can easily create your workbook style.

Get organized with tables

Tables are a great way to organize your data within a spreadsheet. For our GPA workbook, a 4-column table for the Course Name, Credits, Grade and Grade Points is used. Some of the formatting options used to customize the table in our GPA workbook include:

  • Change the table size—Inserting tables and resizing them on the iPad is easy, simply drag the icon on the bottom right corner to add or remove rows or columns from your table at any time
  • Auto-fit rows and columns—If you find that a string is too long for a cell just double tap on the right-edge of the header to resize the column automatically.
  • Table styles—Similar to cells, Excel for iPad provides table styles so that you can match the look and feel of your table to rest of your workbook.
  • Number formatting—Apply number formatting to cells that contain numeric values to make your data easier to read. You can find the number formatting options under the formatting icon on the Home tab.

GPA Calculator 2

Use table styles and the number formatting to make your table perfect.

Formulas on the go

Entering formulas with Excel for the iPad is easy as Pi. While creating Excel for the iPad, the team took a hard look at the basic iOS keyboard and decided that when entering formulas users needed quick access to a unique set of characters. We brought all those characters together to create the perfect keyboard for quickly creating powerful formulas on the go.

GPA Calculator 3

The new keyboard has all the most commonly used keys that you need to enter formulas in Excel for iPad.

For our GPA calculator, we used some of the basics formulas to let Excel crunch the numbers for us. A few features really came in handy when creating our workbook included:

  • VLOOKUP formula—Each school calculates your GPA a bit differently. The VLOOKUP formula makes it easy to account for these differences by keeping all the grand point values in one simple table. Start typing the formula name and Excel for iPad fills in a template to make it easier for you to use the formula.
  • Cell references—Just like on the desktop, building formulas using references is simple. To create a reference while entering a formula simply tap a cell in the spreadsheet and you will see a token referencing the selected.
  • Autofill—Since we created our formula in a table, Excel for iPad automatically autocompletes and calculates the results for the rest of the column.

Excel GPA replacement

 Here you can see the calculated Grade Point column.

See your results

That’s it! You now have the tools to calculate your GPA using Excel for iPad. By carefully using tables, formulas and cell references you can add additional courses to the table and your GPA is automatically updated. This means that you can use this same template to find out how different grades in a new course will end up affecting your GPA.

photo 3


Final GPA calculator workbook.

We also have provided the GPA calculator workbook, which you can download: Excel GPA calculator. Best of luck in the New Year!


Join the conversation

  1. Very nice template but unless my coffee hasn’t kicked in yet I believe your formula should read:
    and not
    As you are looking up the letter grade you want an exact match for the 4th argument of the vlookup (use FALSE or 0). For example, the ‘B’ letter grade should return a 3.0 and not a 3.7 (if you evaluate the vlookup before multiplying against the ‘Credits’ value).
    With the TRUE, this allows some guessing. It’s great for binning numerical values or possibly even binning a letter ( but the “+” symbols would confuse the function. It does get the right answer for some of the grades but the FALSE will always return the correct answer.
    Happy New Year Office Blogs!
    Kevin Lehrbass

  2. MySpreadSheetLab is correct. The VLOOKUP is being applied to an unordered list. the VLOOKUP/True uses a binary search algorithm. VLOOKUP/False is the better option. However, VLOOKUP/True will work if the lookup range is sorted this way:


    • Very cool Oz! 5 srirachas! I was just playing around with your idea and it works great! The only downside might be those who would want to re-order it to B+, B, B- which would be correct for viewing but not for the vlookup to work with TRUE.

      • This is interesting.
        + = CHAR(43)
        – = CHAR(45)
        ^ = CHAR(94)
        [ = CHAR(91)
        | = CHAR(124)

        I wonder if CHAR or CODE gives more insight into how VLOOKUP/True did it’s work.
        It’s great when accidents happen. We end up digging into so much more.

  3. Thanks @MySpreadSheetLab and @OzPivot for bringing this to our attention – great catch! We have updated the workbook as well as the visuals correcting the mistake.

    • Marta, you’re welcome. This was actually fun and enlightening, providing insight into how Excel processes things on the back-end.

  4. Yes, it’s important to know your GPA, but it’s vital to study well all year round. ‘Education gives you knowledge but life gives you wisdom’ – I like these words. Education is an investment, an important one. You know essay writing is very useful for those who are interested in self-improvement, especially if one wants to build a successful career in the future. The secret of success is simple – employers are more often to hire a student with great list of acquired skills. Check if you have difficulties with essay writing and want to overcome writing issues that make difficult to get good GPA.

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