University of Pittsburgh: Acceptance Rate and Admissions Statistics

Heinz Chapel at dawn, gothic cathedral on the University of Pittsburgh campus in Pennsylvania, PA, USA.

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The University of Pittsburgh is a public research university with an acceptance rate of 56%. To apply, students can use the Common Application or the Coalition Application. Successful applicants will need to have strong grades and standardized test scores as well as accomplishments outside of the classroom. The university does not require an essay or letters of recommendation, but does have 3 optional short answer questions. Pitt has rolling admissions, but it is certainly to your advantage to apply early for the best chance at scholarships. For its many strengths, Pitt ranks among the top Middle Atlantic colleges and universities and the top national public universities.

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

Why the University of Pittsburgh

  • Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Campus Features: The 132-acre campus of the University of Pittsburgh is easily recognized by the towering Cathedral of Learning, the tallest educational building in the U.S. The campus enjoys proximity to other highly regarded institutions including Carnegie Mellon University and Duquesne University.
  • Student/Faculty Ratio: 14:1
  • Athletics: The Pitt Panthers compete in the NCAA Division I Atlantic Coast Conference.
  • Highlights: Pitt was awarded a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa for its strengths in the liberal arts and sciences. The university also has strengths in medicine, engineering, and business.

Acceptance Rate

During the 2018-19 admissions cycle, the University of Pittsburgh had an acceptance rate of 56%. This means that for every 100 students who applied, 56 students were admitted, making Pitt's admissions process competitive.

Admissions Statistics (2018-19)
Number of Applicants 32,000
Percent Admitted 56%
Percent Admitted Who Enrolled (Yield) 23%

SAT Scores and Requirements

The University of Pittsburgh requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 81% of admitted students submitted SAT scores.

SAT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
ERW 630 700
Math 640 730
ERW=Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

This admissions data tells us that most of the University of Pittsburgh'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 Pitt scored between 630 and 700, while 25% scored below 630 and 25% scored above 700. On the math section, 50% of admitted students scored between 640 and 730, while 25% scored below 640 and 25% scored above 730. Applicants with a composite SAT score of 1430 or higher will have particularly competitive chances at the University of Pittsburgh.


Pitt does not require the SAT writing section or SAT Subject tests. Note that the University of Pittsburgh 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.

ACT Scores and Requirements

Pitt requires that all applicants submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2017-18 admissions cycle, 41% of admitted students submitted ACT scores.

ACT Range (Admitted Students)
Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
English 27 34
Math 26 31
Composite 28 33

This admissions data tells us that most of the University of Pittsburgh's admitted students fall within the top 11% nationally on the ACT. The middle 50% of students admitted to Pitt received a composite ACT score between 28 and 33, while 25% scored above 33 and 25% scored below 28.


Note that Pitt does not superscore ACT results; your highest composite ACT score will be considered. The University of Pittsburgh does not require the ACT writing section.


In 2018, the average high school GPA for incoming University of Pittsburgh freshman was 4.07, and over 90% of admitted students had an average GPA above 3.5. These results suggest that most successful applicants to the University of Pittsburgh have primarily A and high B grades.

Self-Reported GPA/SAT/ACT Graph

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

The admissions data in the graph is self-reported by applicants to the University of Pittsburgh. 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

The University of Pittsburgh, which accepts over half of applicants, has a selective admissions process. If your SAT/ACT scores and GPA fall within the school's average ranges, you have a strong chance of being admitted. However, Pitt's admissions process focuses on more than a strong academic record; they are looking for students who succeed in rigorous courses that include AP, IB, and Honors courses. The admissions officers also place weight on applicants' responses to the optional short answer questions.

In the graph above, the blue and green dots represent accepted students. As you can see, the majority of students who got in had "B+" or higher averages, SAT scores of about 1150 or higher, and ACT composite scores of 24 or higher. The higher the numbers, the more likely you are to get accepted. Behind the blue and green in the middle of the graph is some red (rejected students) and yellow (waitlisted students), so it's important to keep in mind that some students with strong GPAs and test scores still get rejected by Pitt.