# Demystifying the R score

### Some important points about how the R score is calculated

The R score measures the academic performance of CÉGEP students on a scale of 0 to 50. Typically an R score is situated between 15 and 35. Since the R score is used in the selection process for admission to programs with limited enrollment, it is often a central concern for CÉGEP students. Furthermore, the statistics compiled by universities can serve as a concrete and precise objective for students. For example, in fall 2020, no student with an R score below 31.52 was admitted to law at Université de Montréal. To be called for an admission interview in the medical program at McGill, the cut-off was 34.907. And so on.

A persistent myth about the R score is that it is advantageous to enroll at a less competitive CÉGEP because it is easier to stand out (i.e., obtain a high mark relative to the average) and therefore receive a better R score. Conversely, it is believed that the R score is negatively affected by attending a CÉGEP where it is more difficult to stand out. This would suggest that enrolling at a CÉGEP like Collégial international Sainte-Anne would be disadvantageous. However, neither of these two beliefs is consistent with how the R score is actually calculated. In fact, the goal of the R score is to measure academic performance independent of the CÉGEP attended. In other words, the same performance at any CÉGEP leads to the same R score.

In terms of the mathematics behind its calculation, there are a number of aspects to how the R score is calculated that make it possible to separate performance from its context. One of these is the group strength indicator. As its name suggests, this indicator enables us to distinguish between different groups based on a performance scale. Imagine two students, Clara and Sophia. Clara attends a less competitive CÉGEP, where she works hard and clearly stands out from her classmates. However, this great difference relative to her classmates is not very affected by the addition of the group strength indicator, which is low in value. By contrast, Sophia studies at Sainte-Anne. In her very competitive classes, the value of the group strength indicator is high. Sophia works just as hard as Clara but does not stand out as much from the average. However, a small amount of difference relative to her classmates becomes accentuated with the addition of the group strength indicator. The performance context is therefore neutralized, and Sophia and Clara obtain the same R score. In fact, various statistical studies have shown that the different components used in calculating the R score, including the group strength indicator, serve to effectively isolate performance from the context in which it occurs. Therefore, it is the level of performance itself that is measured.

But are all CÉGEPS created equal? No, not at all!

Sainte-Anne stands out by its commitment to providing students with an environment in which they can excel and reach their full potential. The bonds formed in its caring and supportive community, the quality of instruction and mentoring by teachers, and the continuous development of innovative learning strategies are just some of the reasons that make Sainte-Anne a place where students naturally give the best of themselves and therefore obtain the best R score of which they are capable.

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