An Ultimate Guide: University of Chicago Admission Requirements

September 26, 2021

The University of Chicago is a top-ranked University that many students wish to go to. It's because of the formidable challenges it offers, the illustrious library, the vibrant community, and other spectacular things. University's website itself says few things about why you need to choose UChicago over others.

If whatever we've said above gets you excited to gain admission to the University of Chicago, you need to know how to get into the University of Chicago.

In this guide, we have explained everything related to admission. It will inform you about score requirements, application requirements, and everything else associated with admission. Before we see the admission requirements, let's see an overview of the University of Chicago.

University of Chicago Overview

Founded in 1890, the University of Chicago, popularly known as UChicago, is in Chicago, Illinois, the USA, founded by John Dewey, William Rainey Harper, and Andrew Dickson White.

As per the "2021 US news ranking", UChicago is the 6th(tie) best University in the USA. As per the "2021 QS World University Ranking," UChicago is the World's 9th best University.

The tuition fee for admitted students at UChicago is $59,298 (2020-21). The total enrollment in the school is 14,739. 5:1 is the student to faculty ratio in UChicago. For every 5 students, there's 1 faculty, which provides every student very personalized attention. 78.9% of classes in UChicago consist of fewer than 20 students.

The University of Chicago has significant names in the World as its alumni. Some notable alumni are Bernie Sanders (American Politician), Milton Friedman (American Economist), Morgan Saylor (American Actress), Harvey Levin (American television producer). 

Now let's see the score requirements for UChicago.

University of Chicago

Why University of Chicago

Students in the College develop decisive, analytic, and writing skills in the university’s severe, interdisciplinary core curriculum. Through graduate programs, students test their ideas with UChicago scholars and become the next generation of leaders in academia, commerce, nonprofits, and government.

UChicago research has led to such inventions as discovering the link between cancer and genetics, discovering revolutionary theories of economics, and developing tools to produce certainly excellent urban schooling.

UChicago generated new acumens for the interest of present and future generations with their national and affiliated laboratories: Argonne National Laboratory, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

In all UChicago, is driven to delve deeper, push farther, and ask bigger questions- to enrich all human life. The diverse and creative students and alumni drive innovation, lead international conversations, and make masterpieces. Alumni and faculty, lecturers, and postdocs go on to become Nobel laureates, CEOs, university presidents, attorneys general, literary giants, and astronauts.

UChicago SAT Score Requirements

The University of Chicago is a very competitive institute considering scores requirements. The SAT 25th percentile score of UChicago is 1500. It means only less than 25% of admitted students score below 1500. 

The SAT 75th percentile score of UChicago is 1570. It means around 75% of admitted students have scored less than 1570. The average (50th Percentile) SAT score of UChicago we could find is 1535.

You can also concentrate on the 25th percentile and 75th percentile of both sections individually. For Math, the 25th percentile score is 770, and the 75th percentile score is 800. 

For EBRW, the 25th percentile score is 730, and the 75th percentile score is 770. Here, we can see you need more marks in the Math section to obtain the equivalent percentile score as EBRW.

If you believe you are weak in one section, try to score higher than needed in the other section. So, even if you get more points than required in one section but got less in another, you may still come to the necessary composite score.

University of Chicago Required SAT Scores

SAT Score Policy:

College's SAT score policy decides its method in evaluating student's scores. This policy is different for every school. In the case of UChicago, the method they have is the "highest section."

"Superscoring" is another term for this policy. In this policy, the University will consider your highest section SAT score from all attempts.

For instance, if you took the SAT exam twice, for the first attempt, the composite score is 1516. In the score of 1516, 768 is of Maths, and 748 is of EBRW. In the second attempt, you received 1513 as a composite SAT score. But this time, he received 758 in Maths and 755 in EBRW.

Thus, your highest score for Math and EBRW are on the first and second attempts, respectively. And as UChicago has a policy of the highest section score, they will consider each subject's highest score.

Hence, UChicago will take your Maths score as 768 and EBRW as 755. It benefits the student as his score raised by 7 points, which now became 1523.

Hence as the highest section policy helps students, it's a must to retake the SAT exam. It gives you a chance to raise your composite score.

UChicago ACT Score Requirements:

The composite ACT 25th percentile score of UChicago is 33, and the 75th percentile score is 35. UChicago doesn't have any minimum score requirements. However, a lower score than the 25th percentile will make conditions hard for you to get admitted.

The composite score of ACT is the average of all 4 section scores. So, to get the expected composite score, you need to score around what you expected in every section.

UChicago GPA Requirements

It would help if you had a very high GPA for getting admitted to UChicago. The average GPA for UChicago is 4.0 on a scale of 4. You require a high school grade of "A" to receive this much GPA. If you're sure that you are not receiving this much GPA score, focus on gaining more marks in SAT / ACT.

Now let's move the application requirements.

UChicago Application Requirements

Application For Admission:

The University of Chicago accepts applications from both Coalition Application and Common Application. UChicago treats both platforms equally. You need to pick one of these two portals to apply for UChicago. You need to fill in all the required things which are common for all the applications. Plus, the following are the extra things you fill while applying to UChicago.

Extracurricular Activities: 

It's required for UChicago to mention the extracurricular activities. Here, you need to include the things where you spent your time outside the classroom. It can be anything from a club or a competition, or anything else.

UChicago doesn't have any preferences or expectations regarding extracurricular activities. The college only wants to see what is interesting and meaningful to you. The college does not need any certificate of participation in the activity. 

You can mention your extracurricular activities in the "Activities" section in the Common App. And in Coalition App, you can mention it in the "Activities/Experience" section. However, keep in mind that the Common App and Coalition App allow you to mention only 10 and 8 activities, respectively. If you think it's not sufficient, you can add it in the "Additional Information" section.

To know more about the activities section and how to fill it correctly, go to this blog.

Essays

You're required to write one supplementary essay from the list of prompts. You have a choice to choose any prompt in the list. With this, you also need to write a small essay on the topic "why you would like to attend the University of Chicago." Supplement for this is available in both the application.

UChicago Account

It's required to you to create a UChicago account. To create the account, you can go to getstarted.uchicago.edu. If you already started working on a coalition or Common App, you will receive an email with guidance on setting up your UChicago Account. With this account, you will be able to do the following things:

  • Update your profile
  • Apply for financial aid
  • Upload materials
  • Check admissions decision

Application Fee or Automatic Fee Waiver

While applying for UChicago, you need to submit $75 application fees. You can submit the application fee with both Coalition or Common App. The University will not charge any application fee if you are applying for need-based financial aid.

Secondary School Report

Your school counselor needs to submit your secondary school report. The school reports provide an overview of your academic records in high school. 

High School Transcript

UChicago needs an official transcript for your school counselor. It provides detailed coursework and grade for your complete high school career. 

Your transcript will provide a roadmap of your academic path to college. UChicago wants to see the transcript to see how you challenged yourself in four years of the high school course.

Teachers Recommendation:

You need a letter of recommendation from two teachers who taught you a major subject. The major subjects should be following: 

  • Science 
  • Mathematics 
  • Social Studies
  • History
  • English or Literature
  • Foreign Language

To know more about this, go to collegeadmissions.uchicago.edu/apply/first-year-applicants.

Midyear Report:

For the first semester or trimester, a high school counselor must submit your midyear report with a transcript or grades. For this report, you can use the application portal's grade report form, or you can use the school's mid-year report.

Standardized Test:

UChicago has a test-optional policy. So, it up to you to send the SAT score or not. The University will consider your application regardless of your score submission. If you think that your score is excellent and may influence the decision, you should submit your scores. 

If you think that your scores will negatively influence your decision, it is better not to submit your scores. You can see the score requirements above this blog. 

For more information regarding the standardized score, go to

collegeadmissions.uchicago.edu/apply/first-year-applicants.

Optional requirements:

The following are the optional requirements:

  • Financial Aid Application
  • Video Profile
  • Supplementary Material

The following are the application deadlines of UChicago:

First Year Application Deadlines UChicago

To no more in detail, go to collegeadmissions.uchicago.edu/apply/first-year-applicants.

What If You Are An International applicant?

For an international student, the application requirement is the same but with the English proficiency test requirement. You must demonstrate competence in English if you want to get admitted. For this, you can take tests like:

UChicago Acceptance Rate

You need to know the acceptance rate of the UChicago to know how selective they are. The acceptance rate displays how many percentages of aspirants get admitted. The World's top institutes are very selective while choosing applicants. And as the University of Texas is a leading college in the World, the acceptance rate is low.

The current general acceptance rate of UChicago is 6%. It means, in every 100 candidates, only 6 get accepted. 

The early application acceptance rate of UChicago is approximately 9.49%. So as we see, the early applicant's rate is high compared to regular decisions. Though, keep in mind that this could be because the more competent students apply early.

Each year, both these acceptance rates are decreasing. In the coming years, it may go even less. 

In short: only a few get picked. You could be among a few who get accepted to UChicago if you work hard.

What if Not Accepted? 

You did all that you can, you wait for a time, and you finally get the results. And unfortunately, you got rejected! In the end, the University of Chicago doesn't consider you an excellent fit for them. 

Does it mean you'll give up? No, not yet because there're still some options, not the usual type. It's no guarantee you'll get in, but you've already tried applying, so trying them out won't be too much of a hassle. Here they are: 

Alternative Option A: Go to another college and transfer to the University of Chicago later

You can try heading to another college and transferring to the University of Chicago later. The requirements for transferring are here. But before you get excited, you'll need to know that the transfer acceptance is 5.4%. 

It's lower than the acceptance rates for regular applicants. It means it's going to be very difficult to even get through the transfer process. But you can use your time with the other college and grow. Later, when you're ready to transfer to UChicago, you can show them you're different, and you're better than the first time you applied for them.

Alternative Option B: Apply again after a gap year

The next option is to reapply after finishing a gap year. What's a gap year? It's the year between your high school and applying for college, where you will not be doing any course. 

It's a riskier option to go for because when you reapply, UChicago may see you didn't do much with your time and might reject you again. 

But doing a gap year may be beneficial. The pros of doing a gap year include broadening your perspective, gaining professional experience, and making a difference. It's a way of building up yourself in ways that can benefit your overall growth as a person. 

It's also another way of building up your spike and maintaining excellence in other areas of interest. If you're ready to take the risk while building up to be the student the University of Chicago wants, you can go for this option. 

Conclusion

For a University that's got a reputation for having unusual essays, unique building design, a vibrant community, and a fancy library, the University of Chicago goes adequately secure. It can be hard to apply to them even with the SAT and ACT results being optional. 

It's because you have to prove that your scores aren't what make you the best of the best. You need to show the University of Chicago you have what it takes to be one of them. With the guide above, you can gain the factors and genuinely see the student who deserves to be with them.

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