Admission requirements

Our admission guidelines are designed to ensure you are well-prepared to succeed at UC.

If you're interested in entering the University of California as a freshman, you'll have to satisfy these requirements:

  1. Complete a minimum of 15 college-preparatory courses (a-g courses) with a letter grade of C or better, with at least 11 courses finished prior to the beginning of your last year of high school.

    The 15 courses are:

    a. History

    2 years

    b. English

    4 years

    c. Mathematics

    3 years

    d. Laboratory science

    2 years

    e. Language other than English
    *or equivalent to the 2nd level of high school instruction

    2 years*

    f. Visual and performing arts

    1 year

    g. College-preparatory elective
    (chosen from the subjects listed above or another course approved by the university)

    1 year

  2. Earn a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or better (3.4 if you're a nonresident) in these courses with no grade lower than a C. Learn how to calculate the UC freshman GPA »
  3. Meet the examination requirement by taking the ACT Plus Writing or SAT with Essay by December of your senior year. We don't require SAT Subject Tests, but certain programs on some campuses recommend them, and you can use subject tests to satisfy the "a-g" requirements listed above.  

California students

If you're a state resident who has met the minimum requirements and aren't admitted to any UC campus to which you apply, you'll be offered a spot at another campus if space is available, provided:

  • You rank in the top 9 percent of California high school students, according to our admissions index, or
  • You rank in the top 9 percent of your graduating class at a participating high school. We refer to this as "Eligible in the Local Context" (ELC).

 

How we review applications

Look at all the factors we consider when we evaluate applications.

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Good to know

Minimum weighted GPAs for applicants to UC:

  • 3.0 for California residents
  • 3.4 for out-of-state students

Admissions index

Learn how California students are ranked on a statewide scale.

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Information for international students

Applicants from around the world are welcome at UC. In addition to satisfying the academic requirements, you'll also need to pass an English exam and secure a visa.

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