Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) Admissions Statistics

Learn About WPI and the GPA, SAT Scores and ACT Scores You'll Need

Boynton Hall at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI)
Boynton Hall at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). Allen Grove

Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has selective admissions with an acceptance rate of 48 percent. The great majority of students who get in have grades in the "A" or "A-" range. The university has a test-optional admissions policy, so SAT scores and ACT scores don't need to be part of the admissions equation. Students who choose to submit scores, however, tend to be well above average. WPI uses the Common Application and has a holistic admissions policy.

Why You Might Choose WPI?

WPI, the Worcester Polytechnic Institute, is proud to be one of the country's first technological universities. Founded in 1865, the school now has over 50 bachelor's and graduate degree programs. WPI specializes in science, engineering, and business, but it also has programs in the social sciences, humanities, and arts. WPI places well in national rankings of student engagement and career prospects, and the school also does well with financial aid (the great majority of students receive grant aid).

The City of Worcester is home to 13 colleges and many excellent restaurants and cultural venues. Boston is just an hour away.

WPI GPA, SAT Score, and ACT Score Graph

WPI, Worcester Polytechnic Institute GPA, SAT and ACT Data for Admission
WPI, Worcester Polytechnic Institute GPA, SAT Scores and ACT Scores for Admission. Data courtesy of Cappex.

The data points in the graph above are self-reported by applicants to WPI, and the GPAs represented in the graph are unweighted. You can calculate your own chances of getting in and see the real-time graph with this free tool from Cappex.

Discussion of WPI's Admissions Standards

In the graph above, you can see that successful WPI applicants tend to be well above average. The blue and green dots represent students who won admission. Most had SAT scores of 1200 or higher, an ACT composite of 25 or higher, and a high school average of "B+" or higher. The great majority of admitted students had grades in the "A" range. Note that WPI has a test-optional admissions policy, so your grades are far more important than standardized test scores. Math and science grades are particularly important.

You'll notice quite a few red dots (rejected students) and yellow dots (waitlisted students) mixed in with the green and blue in the middle of the graph. This means that some students with grades and test scores that were on target for admission to WPI did not get in. Note also that a few students were accepted with test scores and grades a bit below the norm. These seeming inconsistencies occur because WPI uses the Common Application and has a holistic admissions process. The admissions folks will be looking for a strong application essay, meaningful extracurricular activities, and positive letters of recommendation. Also, WPI takes into consideration the rigor of your high school courses, not just your grades. You can further strengthen your application by doing an optional interview. Both on-campus and off-campus interviews are a possibility.

Finally, keep in mind that WPI offers a couple Early Action options for applicants. The first of these has a November 1st deadline with admissions decisions arriving by December 20th. Early Action is non-binding, so you can still apply to other schools and you don't need to make a college decision until May 1st. Applying early can, however, help to demonstrate your interest in WPI and may give you a slight advantage over students in the regular applicant pool.

Admissions Data (2017)

More Worcester Polytechnic Institute Information

As you'll see from the data below, WPI has a high price tag, but nearly also students receive significant grant aid to bring that price down. The four-year graduation rate of 82 percent is quite high for an institute with a STEM focus. Some potential negatives include a significant gender imbalance (typical of STEM-focused universities) and a high level of loan debt for some students.

Enrollment (2017)

  • Total Enrollment: 6,642 (4,435 undergraduates)
  • Gender Breakdown: 64 percent Male / 36 percent Female
  • 97 percent Full-time

Costs (2017-18)

  • Tuition and Fees: $48,628
  • Books: $1,000 (why so much?)
  • Room and Board: $14,218
  • Other Expenses: $1,200
  • Total Cost: $65,046

WPI Financial Aid (2016-17)

  • Percentage of Students Receiving Aid: 99 percent
  • Percentage of Students Receiving Types of Aid
    • Grants: 99 percent
    • Loans: 58 percent
  • Average Amount of Aid
    • Grants: $19,515
    • Loans: $11,216

Academic Programs

Graduation and Retention Rates

  • First Year Student Retention (full-time students): 95 percent
  • 4-Year Graduation Rate: 82 percent
  • 6-Year Graduation Rate: 89 percent

Intercollegiate Athletic Programs

  • Men's Sports: Football, Rowing, Soccer, Swimming, Wrestling, Basketball, Baseball, Track and Field, Cross Country
  • Women's Sports: Basketball, Field Hockey, Track and Field, Cross Country, Soccer, Softball, Volleyball

If You Like WPI, You May Also Like These Schools

The great majority of students who apply to Worcester Polytechnic Institute are interested in fields in math, science, and engineering, and they tend to apply to other universities that are strong in these areas. Popular choices include Carnegie Mellon University, Cornell University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Note that all three of these schools are more selective than WPI.

For a couple of good options with admissions standards that are similar to WPI, check out the Rochester Institute of Technology and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Data Source: Graph courtesy of Cappex.com. All other data from the National Center for Education Statistics.