UCLA: Acceptance Rate and Admissions Statistics

Royce Hall at UCLA
Royce Hall at UCLA ( UCLA Campus Photo Tour). Photo Credit: Marisa Benjamin

UCLA is one of the most selective public universities in the country with an acceptance rate of 14.6%. If you're considering this prestigious university, here you'll find the admissions statistics you should know such as the average SAT/ACT scores and GPAs of admitted students.

Why UCLA?

  • Location: Los Angeles, California
  • Campus Features: UCLA's attractive 419-acre campus in Los Angeles' Westwood Village occupies prime real estate just 8 miles from the Pacific Ocean.
  • Student/Faculty Ratio: 18:1
  • Athletics: The UCLA Bruins compete in the NCAA Division I Pacific-12 Conference (Pac-12).
  • Highlights: With over 125 undergraduate majors and 150 graduate degree programs, UCLA's academic breadth is impressive. Strengths in the liberal arts and sciences earned the university a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. It should be no surprise that UCLA ranks among the best public universities.

Acceptance Rate

During the 2018-19 admissions cycle, UCLA had an acceptance rate of 14.6%. This means that for every 100 students who applied, 14 students were admitted, making UCLA's admissions process highly competitive.

Admissions Statistics (2018-19)
Number of Applicants 108,831
Percent Admitted 14.6%
Percent Admitted Who Enrolled 39%

SAT Scores and Requirements

UCLA requires scores from either the SAT or ACT from all applicants. During the 2018-19 admissions cycle, 80% of admitted students submitted SAT scores.

SAT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
ERW 640 740
Math 640 790
ERW= Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

This admissions data tells us that most of UCLA'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 UCLA scored between 640 and 740, while 25% scored below 640 and 25% scored above 740. On the math section, 50% of admitted students scored between 640 and 790, while 25% scored below 640 and 25% scored above 790. Applicants with a composite SAT score of 1530 or higher will have particularly competitive chances at UCLA.

Requirements

UCLA requires applicants to take the SAT with Essay, and the essay score is used by the admissions folks when evaluating applications. SAT Subject Tests are not required, but if you are applying to the Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, you are strongly encouraged to take the Math Level 2 and a science test. Note that UCLA does not superscore the SAT. They will consider your highest combined score from a single test date.

ACT Scores and Requirements

UCLA requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2018-19 admissions cycle, 44% of admitted students submitted ACT scores.

ACT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
English 27 35
Math  26 34
Composite 27 34

This admissions data tells us that most of UCLA's admitted students fall within the top 15% nationally on the ACT. The middle 50% of students admitted to the UCLA received a composite ACT score between 27 and 34, while 25% scored above 34 and 25% scored below 27.

Requirements

If you choose the ACT instead of the SAT, you must take the ACT with Writing. Also keep in mind that applicants to the engineering school are strongly encouraged to take two SAT Subject Tests (Math Level 2 and a science). Finally, UCLA will not superscore the ACT. They will use your highest composite score from a single test date.

GPA

In 2019, the average high school GPA of UCLA's incoming freshmen class was 3.9, and over 88% of incoming students had average GPAs of 3.75 and above. These results suggests that most successful applicants to UCLA have primarily A grades.

Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph

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

The admissions data in the graph is self-reported by applicants to UCLA. 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

UCLA, which accepts fewer than 15% of applicants, has a competitive admissions pool with above-average SAT/ACT scores and GPAs. However, like all of the University of California schools, UCLA has a holistic admissions involving other factors beyond your grades and test scores. Students who show some kind of remarkable talent or have a compelling story to tell will often get a close look even if grades and test scores aren't up to the ideal. Make sure your application has strong essays. You'll want to put significant time and care into your personal insight questions on the UC application.

The university is also looking for students who will contribute to the campus community in meaningful ways, and who show the potential to make a positive impact on the world after graduation. UCLA looks to enroll a diverse student body, and they will look at personal qualities such as leadership ability, creativity, and character as well as an applicant's achievement in his or her school, community, and/or workplace. Also, some programs at UCLA are more competitive than others.

Hidden beneath the blue and green in the graph is a lot of red (rejected students). This tells us that many applicants with high GPAs and test scores get rejected from UCLA. Note also that a number of students were accepted with test scores and grades below the norm. In general, when a school admits such a low percentage of its applicants, you'd be wise to consider it a reach school even if your grades and test scores are on target for admission.

All admissions data has been sourced from the National Center for Education Statistics and UCLA Undergraduate Office of Admissions.