Home How to “Unlocking UCLA: Navigating the University’s Acceptance Rate and Admission Criteria”

“Unlocking UCLA: Navigating the University’s Acceptance Rate and Admission Criteria”


UNCLA University acceptance rate.

With towering palms and sunny skies, the University of California, Los Angeles is the stuff California dreams are made of. But gaining admission to this top-tier school is no day at the beach – UCLA’s acceptance rate hovers around 12%, making it one of the most selective public universities in the nation. 

The good news? While the odds are steep, you can take concrete steps to boost your chances. With strategic planning, hard work, and a stand-out application, beating the odds is possible. Focus on taking the most rigorous course load your high school offers. Go above and beyond on your SAT/ACT prep. Pursue meaningful extracurricular activities that showcase your passions. And craft an authentic, vivid personal statement that brings your application to life. 

While glowing grades and scores are crucial, UCLA seeks more than academic superstars – they want students who will positively contribute to the campus community. Along with highlighting your achievements, find opportunities to demonstrate your empathy, resilience, and desire to have an impact. 

All I need you to do is to read this article concisely, because I will be revealing hints to make you get UNCLA University admissions on a platter of gold

Now let’s get the details of UNCLA University acceptance rate.

UCLA has a highly selective and competitive transfer acceptance rate. For fall 2021, UCLA received 24,537 transfer applicants and admitted 5,814, for an overall transfer acceptance rate of 23.7%. Acceptance rates vary by transfer category and major. Junior level transfers from California community colleges had a 28.4% acceptance rate for fall 2021, admitting 4,292 out of 15,093 applicants. Senior level transfers had a much lower 9.5% acceptance rate, admitting 1,522 out of 9,444 applicants. More competitive majors like Engineering, Film, and Business tend to have lower acceptance rates compared to less competitive majors. While UCLA encourages and welcomes transfer students, meeting minimum requirements like 60+ transferable units and a competitive GPA does not guarantee admission due to the university’s selectivity. Transfer applicants need to stand out academically and highlight their achievements and fit for UCLA to have the best chance of being admitted.

Requirement for acceptance into the UCLA UNIVERSITY

Here are the requirements for academic preparation for admission to UCLA:

  1. Academic preparation 
  • Process application
  • Application requirements for UCLA University
  • Letter of recommendation 

Academic Preparation  

Complete 15 college preparatory high school courses with a letter grade of C or better: 4 years of English, 3 years of math (algebra, geometry, advanced algebra), 2 years of history/social science, 2 years of laboratory science, 2 years of language other than English, and 1 year of visual or performing arts.

Take the SAT or ACT and submit scores that are competitive for UCLA. 

Maintain a high grade point average (GPA) in college prep courses, ideally a minimum 3.5 unweighted GPA. 

Take most challenging, advanced courses offered by high school like honors, AP, IB classes. 

Earn competitive grades in advanced courses; mostly As and Bs. Show an upward trend in academic performance over 4 years of high school.

Processing admission  for UCLA University 


The UCLA application opens on November 1st and must be submitted by November 30th. Students need to complete the University of California common app online, which includes writing four personal insight essays. These essays allow applicants to share stories about their passions, background, goals, and unique qualities. Applicants also need to arrange for SAT or ACT scores to be sent directly from the testing agency, as well as request an official high school transcript containing their courses, grades, and GPA. Finally, the non-refundable application fee must be paid before submitting. Meeting all these requirements and deadlines will ensure students have a complete application to UCLA. The process involves planning ahead and coordinating documents from different sources.

Extracurricular activities requirements for UCLA 

UCLA wants to admit students who are more than just strong academically. They are looking for students who are passionate, involved, and give back to their communities. To demonstrate this, applicants should highlight extracurricular activities where they took on leadership roles, built valuable skills, or made an impact through volunteering. Examples could include serving as captain of a sports team, interning at a company, or organizing a community service event. These experiences show UCLA that applicants can balance schoolwork with impactful activities outside the classroom.

Letters of recommendation requirements for UCLA admission:

Applicants need to submit two letters of recommendation from teachers, counselors, or mentors who know them well. These letters should provide an assessment of the student’s academic abilities, motivation, integrity, and potential for success at UCLA. Letters from core subject teachers who have worked closely with the student for years carry the most weight. Recommenders should emphasize unique qualities and provide examples that go beyond just strong grades. The letters complement the rest of the application by offering an outside perspective on the student.

UCLA University early versus regular decisions: meaning and deadlines.

In UCLA University admissions has been segmented into two groups. These are;

  • Early decision
  • Regular decisions 

Early Decision

Early Action (EA) is a college application process where students apply to a college early (usually in November) and receive an admission decision earlier than the regular decision deadline. It’s non-binding, meaning students are not required to attend if accepted, and they can still apply to other colleges. It’s a way for students to demonstrate interest and potentially increase their chances of admission at their top-choice schools.

– Binding program – applicants must attend UCLA if admitted.

– November application deadline

– Mid-December notification of decision

– Only available for certain majors like Engineering, Nursing, and Theater

– Slightly higher acceptance rate compared to regular decision

Regular Decision

Regular Decision (RD) is the traditional college application process where students submit their applications by a specified deadline (usually in January or February) and receive their admission decisions by April or later. Unlike Early Action or Early Decision, RD does not have an early deadline, and students can apply to multiple colleges without any binding commitment. It allows students more time to gather materials, consider their options, and compare financial aid packages before making a decision.

– Non-binding – students can weigh all options if admitted 

– November application deadline

– March notification of decisions

– Open to all undergraduate majors

– Overall lower acceptance rate than early decision

Majority of applicants apply through regular decision.

Key Differences between early decision and regular decisions.

– Early decision signals a strong commitment to attending UCLA which can give a slight edge. Regular decision keeps options open.

– Early decision gets notification earlier than regular. 

– Acceptance rates are somewhat higher for early decision but still highly competitive.

– All applicants are held to the same academic standards regardless of decision plan.

In summary, UCLA early decision can benefit very strong applicants who know UCLA is their #1 choice. But regular decision works best for those wanting to compare options before deciding on UCLA. Both have rigorous criteria.

 UNCLA University admissions deadlines.


UNCLA University deadlines are as follows;

Freshman Fall Admission:

  • November 30 – Application deadline for fall admission
  • November 30 – Last day to submit SAT/ACT scores 

January 1 – Deadline for submission of scholarship applications 

March – Notification of admission decisions sent out

Freshman Winter Admission:J

uly 1 – Application deadline for winter quarter admission

  • August 1 – Notification of winter admission decisions 


Transfer Admission: meaning and dates 


Transfer admissions is when students move from one college to another, submitting transcripts and other materials to continue their education elsewhere.

  • April 1-30 – Application filing period for fall quarter transfer
  •  End of June – Fall transfer admission notifications sent out
  • July 1-31 – Application filing period for winter quarter transfer  

End of September – Winter transfer admission notifications sent out

Note – Some UCLA programs like Nursing have earlier deadlines.

Transfer students have a wider window from April 1-30 for fall and July 1-31 for winter. Meeting the deadlines is critical for admission consideration.


With over 135,000 freshmen applications for fall 2022 alone, UCLA is one of the most applied-to universities in the world. This enormous interest coincides with an ultra-competitive admissions process. For fall 2022, UCLA offered admission to just 12,764 freshmen, yielding an acceptance rate of 12% – marking the first time the rate has hit single digits. 

To put UCLA’s 12% acceptance rate in perspective, it is lower than fellow prestigious UC schools like Berkeley (16.7%) and San Diego (29.8%), and highly elite private schools like Cornell (14.1%), Duke (7.7%), and Harvard (4.9%). Out of over 100,000 applicants, only the very top academic performers gain entrance.

UCLA’s astonishingly low acceptance rate reflects its tremendous appeal as a world-class public research university ranked in the top 20 nationally. But it also reflects the university’s commitment to highly selective admissions, assembling an accomplished and diverse incoming class. In the end, with elite academics and California location, UCLA looks for the best of the best. The 12% acceptance cements it as one of the toughest colleges to get into.



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