Occidental College: Acceptance Rate and Admissions Statistics

Administration building at Occidental College

Jeffrey Beall / Flickr /CC BY-SA 2.0

Occidental College is a private liberal arts college with an acceptance rate of 37%. Located on a 120-acre campus in the Eagle Rock neighborhood of Los Angeles, Occidental has a suburban feel surrounded by coffee shops, restaurants, galleries, and shops. For its strengths in the liberal arts and sciences, Occidental College was awarded a chapter of the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society. Popular majors include biology, economics, diplomacy and world affairs, and sociology. Academics are supported by a 9-to-1 student/faculty ratio and an average class size of 18. In athletics, the Occidental Tigers compete in the NCAA Division III Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The college fields ten men's and eleven women's varsity sports teams.

Considering applying to Occidental College? Here are the admissions statistics you should know, including average SAT/ACT scores and GPAs of admitted students.

Acceptance Rate

During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, Occidental College had an acceptance rate of 37%. This means that for every 100 students who applied, 37 students were admitted, making Occidental's admissions process competitive.

Admissions Statistics (2017-18)
Number of Applicants 7,281
Percent Admitted 37%
Percent Admitted Who Enrolled (Yield) 21%

SAT Scores and Requirements

Occidental College requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 64% of admitted students submitted SAT scores.

SAT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
ERW 640 710
Math 630 740
ERW=Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

This admissions data tells us that most of Occidental College's admitted students fall within the top 20% nationally on the SAT. For the evidence-based reading and writing section, 50% of students admitted to Occidental scored between 640 and 710, while 25% scored below 640 and 25% scored above 710. On the math section, 50% of admitted students scored between 630 and 740, while 25% scored below 630 and 25% scored above 740. Applicants with a composite SAT score of 1450 or higher will have particularly competitive chances at Occidental College.

Requirements

Occidental College does not require the SAT writing section. Note that Occidental participates in the scorechoice program, which means that the admissions office will consider your highest score from each individual section across all SAT test dates. Occidental does not require SAT Subject tests, but will review the scores if submitted.

ACT Scores and Requirements

Occidental requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 46% of admitted students submitted ACT scores.

ACT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
English 30 35
Math 26 30
Composite 28 32

This admissions data tells us that most of Occidental College's admitted students fall within the top 11% nationally on the ACT. The middle 50% of students admitted to Occidental received a composite ACT score between 28 and 32, while 25% scored above 32 and 25% scored below 28.

Requirements

Occidental College does not require the ACT writing section. Unlike many universities, Occidental superscores ACT results; your highest subscores from multiple ACT sittings will be considered.

GPA

In 2018, the average high school GPA of Occidental College's incoming freshmen class was 3.65, and nearly 75% of the class had average GPAs of 3.5 and above. This information suggests that most successful applicants to Occidental have primarily A and B grades.

Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph

Occidental College Applicants' Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph.
Occidental College Applicants' Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph. Data courtesy of Cappex.

The admissions data in the graph is self-reported by applicants to Occidental College. GPAs are unweighted. Find out how you compare to accepted students, see the real-time graph, and calculate your chances of getting in with a free Cappex account.

Admissions Chances

Occidental College has a competitive admissions pool with a low acceptance rate and high average SAT/ACT scores. However, Occidental has a holistic admissions process involving other factors beyond your grades and test scores. Strong application and supplemental essays and glowing letters of recommendation can strengthen your application, as can participation in meaningful extracurricular activities and a rigorous course schedule. Students with particularly compelling stories or achievements can still receive serious consideration even if their grades and test scores are outside Occidental's average range.

In the graph above, you can see that the majority of successful applicants had high school grades in the "A" range, combined SAT scores of 1250 or higher, and ACT composite scores of 26 or better. The higher those grades and test scores, the better your chances are of receiving an acceptance letter from Occidental.

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