University of Texas at Austin Admission Statistics

Learn About UT Austin and the GPA and SAT/ACT Scores You'll Need

University of Texas at Austin
University of Texas at Austin. Amy Jacobson

With an acceptance rate of just 36 percent, the University of Texas at Austin is one of the more selective public universities in the country. Admitted students typically have both grades and standardized test scores that are well above average. Students can use either the ApplyTexas Application or the Coalition Application. In either case, applicants must write an essay, respond to several short answers, and take either the SAT or ACT.

For its many strengths, UT Austin earned a place among the top Texas colleges, top South Central colleges, and top national public universities.

Why the University of Texas?

  • Location: Austin, Texas
  • Campus Features: The Main Building's tower stands 307 feet above UT Austin's attractive 423-acre main campus. The university also has a large research campus in North Austin.
  • Student/Faculty Ratio: 18:1
  • Athletics: The Texas Longhorns compete in the NCAA Division I Big 12 Conference.
  • Highlights: With over 50,000 students, UT Austin is one of the largest universities in the country. The school is an excellent value for in-state students, and McCombs is one of the best business schools for undergraduates.

UT Austin Admissions Statistics 2017-18

For students entering the University of Texas at Austin in the 2017-18 academic year, the acceptance rate was just 36 percent. Below you can find standardized test score percentiles for accepted students.

SAT Score Percentiles
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
ERW 620 720
Math 600 740
ERW=Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

The SAT is slightly more popular than the ACT among University of Texas applicants. If you compare SAT scores for top Texas colleges and universities, you'll see that only Rice University is more selective than UT Austin.

ACT Score Percentiles
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
English 25 34
Math 26 32
Composite 26 33

An average ACT score is roughly 21, so you can see that nearly all students who were admitted to the University of Texas had scores that were significantly above average.

University of Texas GPA, SAT, and ACT Graph

University of Texas at Austin GPA, SAT score, and ACT score data for admission.
University of Texas at Austin GPA, SAT score, and ACT score data for admission.  Graph courtesy of Cappex.

The GPA, SAT score, and ACT score data in the graph was submitted by the actual applicants to the university. You can see the real-time graph and calculate your own chances of getting into UT Austin with a free account at Cappex.

Discussion of UT Austin's Admissions Standards

In the graph above, green and blue represent accepted students. As you can see, the majority of accepted students had a GPA of B+/A- or higher, an SAT score (ERW+M) above about 1100, and an ACT composite score of 22 or higher. Chances of admission improve significantly with numbers well above those lower ranges. Realize, however, that hidden beneath the blue and green on the graph is a lot of red—some students with excellent transcripts and strong standardized test results still get rejected from the University of Texas (see the graph below for more information)

Note also that a number of students were accepted with test scores and grades a bit below the norm. The University of Texas has holistic admissions, so the admissions officers are considering qualitative as well as quantitative information. Students who show some kind of interesting talent or have a compelling story to tell will often get a close look even if grades and test scores aren't quite up to the ideal. A winning essay, strong letters of recommendation, and interesting extracurricular activities can all be important pieces of a successful application.

Rejection and Waitlist Data for UT Austin

Rejection and waitlist data for the University of Texas at Austin.
Rejection and waitlist data for the University of Texas at Austin.  Graph courtesy of Cappex.

From the graph earlier in this article, you might be led to conclude that students with "A" averages and strong SAT or ACT scores are almost certain to get into the University of Texas at Austin. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Plenty of students with GPAs and standardized test scores that are on target for the university fail to be admitted.

The rejection of a seemingly qualified student can be the result of many factors: lack of depth or accomplishment in extracurricular activities; failure to demonstrate leadership ability; a lack of challenging AP, IB or Honors courses; a sloppy admissions essay; and more. Also, out-of-state applicants will face a higher admissions bar than Texas students. 

Be sure to strengthen your application by submitting an optional activities resumé and optional letters of recommendation.

More University of Texas Information

UT Austin is an excellent value for in-state applicants, but keep in mind that fewer than half of students receive any grant aid, and over 40 percent of students don't graduate in four years.

Enrollment (2017)

  • Total Enrollment: 51,525 (40,492 undergraduates)
  • Gender Breakdown: 47 percent male / 53 percent female
  • 93 percent full-time

Costs (2017–18)

  • Tuition and Fees: $10,398 (in-state); $36,744 (out-of-state)
  • Books: $662 (why so much?)
  • Room and Board: $10,070
  • Other Expenses: $4,310
  • Total Cost: $25,440 (in-state); $51,786 (out-of-state)

University of Texas Financial Aid (2016–17)

  • Percentage of New Students Receiving Aid: 64 percent
  • Percentage of New Students Receiving Types of Aid
  • Grants: 43 percent
  • Loans: 37 percent
  • Average Amount of Aid
  • Grants: $10,644
  • Loans: $5,887

Academic Programs

  • Most Popular Majors Advertising, Biology, Communication Studies, Computer and Information Science, Economics, Electrical Engineering, Finance, History, Interdisciplinary Studies, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Political Science, Psychology, Radio and Television
  • What major is right for you? Sign up to take the free "My Careers and Majors Quiz" at Cappex.

Graduation and Retention Rates

  • First Year Student Retention (full-time students): 95 percent
  • 4-Year Graduation Rate: 58 percent
  • 6-Year Graduation Rate: 83 percent

Intercollegiate Athletic Programs

  • Men's Sports: Football, Track & Field, Swimming & Diving, Tennis, Baseball, Basketball, Golf
  • Women's Sports: Rowing, Tennis, Golf, Track & Field, Soccer, Softball, Basketball, Volleyball, Swimming & Diving

If You Like the University of Texas - Austin, Be Sure to Check Out These Schools

Applicants to the University of Texas at Austin often apply to other campuses in the UT system such as the University of Texas at San Antonio and the University of Texas at Dallas. Other popular universities in Texas include Baylor University, Texas Christian University, and Southern Methodist University.

Students looking for a big public university with strong Division I athletics might also want to look at the University of Florida, University of Alabama, and Clemson University.

Data Source: Graphs from Cappex.com; all other data from the National Center for Education Statistics