A US applications are what we call holistic applications. They’re not based solely on one factor like a student’s predicted grade. What the US applications really consists of is a whole row of information, all of which is factored into the decision as to whether to offer a student a place at that particular college. For example, an admissions tutor will have access to the student’s grades, because the high school college counsellor will have sent these in the admissions tutor will also see the information naturally that the student has submitted personal details, etc, etc. And they may well also at this stage have seen the SAT or ACT scores where appropriate. But all of this really is a little impersonal. The importance of the college essay is that the tutors actually want to get to know you, the student as a person, not just just numbers on a transcript. So this is your big chance to actually sell yourself and to talk to the admissions tutors – so they get to understand what motivates you, what drives you, and what sort of person you are.