San Francisco State University: Acceptance Rate and Admissions Statistics

SFSU

Webbi1987 / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-2.0

San Francisco State University is a public university with an acceptance rate of 72%. Founded in 1899, San Francisco State is one of the 23 Cal State schools. San Francisco State offers bachelor's degrees in 77 academic areas. The 142-acre urban campus gives students ready access to the dining and cultural attractions of the city. In athletics, the San Francisco State Gators compete in the NCAA Division II California Collegiate Athletic Association. Popular sports include softball, cross country, basketball, soccer, and wrestling. 

Considering applying to San Francisco State University? 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, San Francisco State had an acceptance rate of 72%. This means that for every 100 students who applied, 72 students were admitted, making SFSU's admissions process somewhat competitive.

Admissions Statistics (2017-18)
Number of Applicants 35,606
Percent Admitted 72%
Percent Admitted Who Enrolled (Yield) 17%

SAT Scores and Requirements

San Francisco State University requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 90% of admitted students submitted SAT scores.

SAT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
ERW 480 590
Math 470 570
ERW=Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

This admissions data tells us the most of SFSU's admitted students fall within the bottom 29% nationally on the SAT. For the evidence-based reading and writing section, 50% of students admitted to San Francisco State scored between 480 and 590, while 25% scored below 480 and 25% scored above 590. On the math section, 50% of admitted students scored between 470 and 570, while 25% scored below 470 and 25% scored above 570. Applicants with a composite SAT score of 1160 or higher will have particularly competitive chances at San Francisco State.

Requirements

San Francisco State does not require the SAT writing section. Note that SFSU will consider your highest score from each individual section across all SAT test dates. SAT Subject test scores are not required, but if the score meets a benchmark, it may be used to fulfill certain core course requirements.

ACT Scores and Requirements

SFSU requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 25% of admitted students submitted ACT scores.

ACT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
English 16 24
Math 16 23
Composite 17 23

This admissions data tells us that most of SFSU's admitted students fall within the bottom 32% nationally on the ACT. The middle 50% of students admitted to San Francisco State received a composite ACT score between 17 and 23, while 25% scored above 23 and 25% scored below 17.

Requirements

San Francisco State does not require the ACT writing section. Note that SFSU does not superscore ACT results; your highest composite ACT score will be considered.

GPA

In 2018, the average high school GPA for incoming San Francisco State freshmen was 3.26. This data suggests that most successful applicants to SFSU have primarily B grades.

Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph

San Francisco State University Applicants' Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph.
San Francisco State University Applicants' Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph. Data courtesy of Cappex.

The admissions data in the graph is self-reported by applicants to San Francisco State University. 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

San Francisco State University, which accepts nearly three-quarters of applicants, has a somewhat selective admissions process. What makes the difference between an acceptance and a rejection? Unlike the University of California System, the California State University admission process is not holistic. Except for EOP (Educational Opportunity Program) students, applicants do not need to submit letters of recommendation or an application essay, and extracurricular involvement is not part of the standard application. Instead, admissions are based primarily on an eligibility index that combines GPA and test scores. Minimum high school course requirements include two years of history and social science, four years of college prep English, three years of math, two years of laboratory science, one year of visual or performing arts, and one year of a college preparatory elective. The reasons why an applicant with adequate scores and grades would be rejected tends to come down to factors such as insufficient college preparatory classes, high school classes that weren't challenging, or an incomplete application.

Be aware that San Francisco State University is designated as impacted for some majors because it receives more applications than can be accommodated. Due to impaction, the university holds applicants to impacted majors to a higher standard.

In the graph above, the green and blue data points represent accepted students. The majority of successful applicants had "B" averages or higher, SAT scores (ERW+M) of 950 or higher, and ACT scores of 18 or higher. You'll see that a few students with lower grades and scores were accepted, but there are also some red data points (rejected students) in the middle of the graph. Some students with grades and test scores that seem to be on target for San Francisco State will still get rejected.

Admissions Profiles for Other Cal State Campuses