i know most art schools don't really care about a high GPA, but i hear that it does have its benefits. i've had above a 3.2 throughout high school and i intend to graduate with a 4.0. will this earn me anything at all, like a higher chance of being accepted or some financial aid? anything?
Err, if you currently have a 3.2, how can you raise it to a 4.0? A 4.0 requires straight As throughout high school.
Anyways, I'd very roughly estimate (though it varies from school to school) that getting accepted and winning merit scholarships is fifty percent portfolio, thirty percent grades, and twenty percent everything else.
A high GPA can mean a great deal. Even art colleges have found that students with high GPAs in H.S. are more likely to have the maturity and self-discipline to finish a 4-year degree program successfully. All the talent in the world won't do a student any good if they cannot complete assignments or come to class on time.
I received a large scholarship for having a 3.8 GPA and for my portfolio
A high GPA really helps when you need to aid (and who doesn't?) plus Advanced Placement classes such as AP art and English will usually transfer over, and you won't need to take those classes !
First, some schools require a high GPA for admissions. This is particularly true for RISD and MICA and University of Cincinnati.
Secondly, Having a high GPA will help with obtaining financial aid and scholarships.
Thirdly, as Raining Again noted, students with high GPAs have a better chance of success in college that those of lower GPAs regardless of talent. You need a combination of talent, hard work, dilligence and time management, not to mention intelligence, in order to succeed at most colleges.
Moreover, don't neglect your college GPA either. If you want to apply to grad school or professional schools, having a high GPA will be very important to those goals.