UCLA Acceptance Rate
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Acceptance Rate for UCLA – Introduction

College acceptance rates are one of the many things you should consider when applying to a school. Schools publish their acceptance rates to help students understand how likely they are to gain acceptance. Top schools across the country pride themselves on their low acceptance rates, and acceptance rate can be one indicator of a school’s quality. UCLA is one of the most well-regarded schools in the country. The UCLA acceptance rate shows how difficult it is to get in. 

However, The University of California Los Angeles acceptance rate is just one statistic to think about. It shouldn’t discourage you from submitting a UCLA application. If UCLA enrollment is your goal, your job is to put your best foot forward to the UCLA admissions committee. Don’t worry about the UCLA acceptance rate, UCLA GPA requirements, or UCLA SAT requirements. Just be aware that if your GPA only slightly exceeds the average GPA requirements for UCLA (3.0 for in-state students, 3.4 for out-of-state students), it might be a reach school for you. Therefore, plan to apply to other schools with higher college acceptance rates as well. 

In this guide, we will look closely at the UCLA acceptance rate. We will also discuss why the UCLA acceptance rate is so low and how the UCLA acceptance rate has changed over the past few years. Then, we’ll look at some other key admissions statistics. This will help you understand how the UCLA acceptance rate affects your individual admissions odds. 

What is the UCLA acceptance rate?

The University of California Los Angeles acceptance rate for incoming freshmen, as published on the UCLA admissions website, is 11%. However, this single number does not tell the full story. College acceptance rates vary based on where you live and where you submit your UCLA application. International students, for example, typically experience lower college acceptance rates than domestic applicants. 

In addition, the acceptance rate for UCLA varies between the different colleges on campus. The School of Music, for example, has a college acceptance rate of around 20%. However, the college acceptance rates for the Schools of Architecture and Performing Arts are both less than 5%. In addition, the UCLA School of Engineering, its second largest college, only accepts 8% of students. For this reason,  students in these disciplines may have a harder time with how to get into UCLA than students in the College of Letters and Science, which has a 13% UCLA acceptance rate. 

Demystifying college acceptance rates

Now that we’ve gone over some UCLA acceptance rate numbers, let’s talk about what an acceptance rate actually is.

The University of California Los Angeles acceptance rate is calculated by dividing the number of accepted students by the total number of applicants. Then, you multiply that result by 100. Because UCLA admissions accepted 15,028 students out of a total of 139,490 applicants, their acceptance rate for 2021 was 10.7%, which rounds up to 11%.

There is no single formula for how to get into UCLA—the UCLA acceptance rate is just one factor in the overall UCLA admissions process. Furthermore, an 11% UCLA acceptance rate does not mean that every applicant has an 11% chance of acceptance.

What does UCLA admissions consider?

The UCLA admissions team considers many factors when looking at a given student. These include the UCLA GPA requirements, extracurricular involvement, and other elements of the UCLA application. There are no UCLA SAT requirements. In fact, the UC system does not consider SAT scores when reviewing your UCLA application. However, students may submit test scores for course placement purposes.

UCLA acceptance rate
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Since UCLA does not look at test scores, there aren’t any UCLA SAT requirements. However, there are other ways you can strengthen your application. Increase your chances of UCLA enrollment by exceeding the average GPA for UCLA, writing strong responses to the Personal Insight Questions, and showing character through extracurricular activities. 

As you complete your UCLA application, it can be easy to focus on the low UCLA acceptance rate. However, these numbers don’t tell you everything. Instead of focusing only on college acceptance rates, we implore you to explore what a college has to offer and whether it is a good fit for your goals. Just because a college has a low acceptance rate does not mean that it is the best-fit college for you. So, beyond looking into college acceptance rates, including the acceptance rate for UCLA, also research the academics, campus environment, and school culture

Is UCLA hard to get into?

According to a 2021 CBS report, the University of California Los Angeles acceptance rate makes it the 32nd hardest college to get into in the country. In addition, it has the lowest college acceptance rate of any public university in the country. This makes UCLA even harder to get into, especially if you are not a California resident. Therefore, even though it is not the most selective college in the country, the low acceptance rate for UCLA still makes it competitive. 

What makes the acceptance rate for UCLA so low?

One of the main reasons for the low UCLA acceptance rate is an increase in UCLA applications. In 2020, UCLA admissions received 108,877 applications. In 2021, the number jumped up to 139,490 UCLA applications. However, in that same time frame, UCLA enrollment only increased by 201 students. This meant that over 30,000 new applicants competed for only 201 spots. For this reason, the UCLA acceptance rate dropped.

UCLA requires a minimum 3.0 GPA

Another reason for the low UCLA acceptance rate is the strict UCLA GPA requirements. It is not enough to simply fill out a UCLA application. Because UCLA is part of the rigorous UC system, the UCLA GPA requirements are dictated by the whole UC system. In order to get into any UC school, students must earn at least a 3.0 GPA and may not have any grades below a “C”. 

UCLA admissions considers the number of students on campus

UCLA enrollment is limited by the amount of space the campus has to house students. So, with application numbers increasing around the country, it is no surprise that college acceptance rates are falling at many top-50 schools. This increased competition is one reason why just meeting the 3.0 UCLA GPA requirements is not enough for students to get in. In reality, most UCLA students had a weighted GPA of 4.4. These high UCLA GPA requirements, along with the low UCLA acceptance rate, make it difficult to determine how to get into UCLA. 

What is the acceptance rate for UCLA for out-of-state?

According to the UCLA admissions website, in 2019, the UCLA acceptance rate for out-of-state students was 16% compared to 12% for in-state students. However, this figure represents a sharp decrease from 23% in 2017 and 22% in 2018. 

UCLA Acceptance Rate
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Also, note that the UCLA GPA requirements tend to be higher for out-of-state students. The UCLA GPA requirements for non-residents state that these students must earn at least a 3.4 with no grades below a C. Despite the lack of UCLA SAT requirements, out-of-state applicants also report higher test scores than their in-state counterparts.

These trends represent a gradual shift in UCLA admissions policy toward admitting more California residents. Across the UC system, in-state college acceptance rates are rising while out-of-state college acceptance rates are falling. Therefore, students from outside California face more pressure to excel in their UCLA application. This leads to higher UCLA GPA requirements and UCLA SAT requirements for those applicants.

UCLA acceptance rate vs. UC Berkeley acceptance rate

UCLA is the top public school both in California and in the whole country. UC Berkeley is also a top-tier school that has a lot in common with UCLA. Both are public universities with a strong focus on research and both are located in California. In addition, both schools use a holistic review process for admissions. This means they focus on more than just numbers and statistics when evaluating students.

The UCLA acceptance rate and the UC Berkeley acceptance rate are very similar. The acceptance rate for UCLA is 11% while the acceptance rate for Berkeley is slightly higher at 14%. Both of these college acceptance rates are highly competitive and each school has its own benefits and drawbacks. If you’re trying to decide which of these schools to attend, look beyond acceptance rates in your research

Other UCLA Admissions stats

The UCLA admissions website publishes a wide variety of statistics in addition to the UCLA acceptance rate. These include the GPA requirements for UCLA, which outline the grades that UCLA applicants typically receive in high school. Alongside the UCLA acceptance rate, they also include UCLA enrollment statistics that track the diversity of the UCLA student body as well as the number of applicants to each of UCLA’s six undergraduate colleges.

When looking at how to get into UCLA, these UCLA admissions statistics can be extremely valuable. Looking at the GPA requirements for UCLA, which in 2021 averaged between a 4.35 and a 4.72 weighted, helps you understand how your grades stack up against students who got in. However, it is also important to note that having a GPA in that range is no guarantee of joining the UCLA enrollment.

Similarly, having a GPA outside of that range does not mean you will be denied. The acceptance rate for UCLA is low because they consider all aspects of a student’s application, not just grades.

Diversity and demographics

Other admissions statistics show the diversity of the UCLA incoming freshman class. According to the website, 38% of freshmen identify as Asian, while a further 22% identify as Hispanic or Latino. These numbers are not related to the acceptance rate for UCLA, but they do show that UCLA is a diverse campus. 

University of California Los Angeles acceptance rate
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UCLA acceptance rate and the UC admissions process

We’ve seen that the UCLA acceptance rate is low. For this reason, it is important for your UCLA application to stand out among the 100,000+ applications that UCLA admissions receives every year. 

In order for your application to shine, you need to know what UCLA admissions wants to see. This information will allow you to focus on the most important aspects of the UCLA application so you don’t spend time on things that do not affect your UCLA admissions decision. Because UCLA is part of the UC system, they do not accept the Common Application or Coalition Application. You can only apply to UCLA through the UC application.

UCLA has no early decision or early action options

Each of the UC schools uses similar criteria when reviewing applications. Unlike at many other schools, there is only one UCLA application deadline and no Early Decision or Priority Admission offerings. This means that UC reviews all applications the same way and in the same time frame. There are also no UCLA SAT requirements because the UC system does not factor test scores into their decisions. 

In addition, UC uses what they call a holistic review process to evaluate students more fairly. Instead of looking at just raw data about students’ grades, they use their Personal Insight Questions to get to know students on a deeper level

The UC application website contains a full list of the 13 different criteria that UC admissions uses to review applications. The main takeaway is that there is no one formula or pathway to getting into UCLA. The best thing you can do is to highlight your strengths and show how your individual skills and personality will make UCLA a better place. Don’t be discouraged because of the low UCLA acceptance rate. Strong grades and personal statements can help increase your chances of admission!

University of California Los Angeles Acceptance Rate – Final Thoughts

Without a doubt, the University of California Los Angeles acceptance rate is low. UCLA is also ranked among the top schools in the entire country, not just in California. However, the 11% UCLA acceptance rate reported on the website does not tell the full story. By itself, it does not provide any information about how to get into UCLA. Furthermore, you have no control over the UCLA acceptance rate. However, you can submit the best possible UCLA application, meet the GPA requirements for UCLA, and give yourself the best chance of success with UCLA admissions. 

Knowing the UCLA acceptance rate is helpful for building a diverse list of match, reach, and safety schools, but focusing too much attention on the UCLA acceptance rate is less helpful. Instead, work on creating the best UCLA application you can, and know that you might also need to apply to some other schools! 

At CollegeAdvisor.com, we are here to help you at every stage in the UCLA application process to put your best foot forward. You can register for one-on-one advising services with one of our trained college advisors. Or check out our library of webinars and articles for additional information on the UCLA application process!

ucla acceptance rate

This guide to the UCLA acceptance rate was written by Alex Baggott Rowe, Davidson ’16. If you want to learn more about UCLA including how to get into UCLA, we’ve got you covered. CollegeAdvisor.com’s network of 300+ Admissions Experts (and former admissions officers) includes graduates from universities like UCLA. Create your free account or schedule a free advising consultation by calling (844) 576-0953.