UCI Acceptance Rate, Admissions, SAT/ACT, GPA, Tuition, Rankings

The University of California System houses some of the prestigious institutions on the Pacific Coast, and here we are looking at the acceptance rate at UCI.

The University of California, Irvine is one of the ten campuses in the UC school system. UC Irvine was established to accommodate the increasing number of students seeking admission into the University of California System.

Since its establishment in the mid-1960s, UC Irvine has become a prominent research institution with global recognition. The programs offered at UCI cover a wide range of undergraduates and graduate studies, accosted with intensive academic research.

The University of California, Irvine over the years has become an institution with huge admiration. The number of applications received at UCI annually exceeds 90,000. Many high schoolers consider UC Irvine the perfect destination to obtain a college degree.

Well, if you are one of those students who want to attend UC Irvine but do not know the admission requirements, process, and acceptance rate at UCI. Perhaps you are seeking a transfer admission at UCI, yet you do not know the requirements. 

The information in this article explains the acceptance rate for first-year and transfer admission at UCI as well as the requirements for admission.

UCI Acceptance Rate

About the University of California, Irvine (UCI)

The University of California, Irvine was established in 1965 as part of the ten UC campuses. The university’s main campus sits on 1,475 acres, and UC Irvine is the only research institution in Orange County In the Association of American Universities (AAU).

The degree programs offered at UC Irvine are over 190, covering different fields of study at undergraduate and graduate levels. The total enrollment at UCI comprises 29,449 undergraduate and 6,090 graduate students. UC Irvine functions on a quarter base academic calendar.

The UC Irvine library system holds about 3.6 million books, 114,000 official government documents, and up to 154,000 journals.

The famous UC Irvine Anteaters compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division 1. The Anteaters have dominated in the national championship, winning 28 titles in nine different sports.

Also Read: 10 Best Pre Med Schools in California

List of Undergraduate and Graduate Divisions at the University of California, Irvine

  • Claire Trevor School of the Arts
  • School of Biological Sciences
  • The Henry Samueli School of Engineering
  • School of Education 
  • The Paul Merage School of Business 
  • School of Humanities 
  • Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences 
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 
  • School of Law 
  • Sue and Bill Gross School of Nursing
  • School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences 
  • School of Physical Sciences 
  • Program in Public Health
  • School of Medicine 
  • School of Social Ecology 
  • School of Social Sciences

The University of California, Irvine Rankings

The recent rankings of UC Irvine according to Times Higher Education, U.Snews & World Report, and Niche.com.

Times Higher Education

The University of California, Irvine sits in the 98th position in the world university rankings and 87th In the U.S ranking.

UC Irvine engineering & technology is ranked 100th, physical sciences rank 59th, and life sciences take the 126-150 position.

U.Snews & World Report

UCI is ranked 36th among National Universities and the 15th Best College for Veterans by U.Snews & World Report. UC Irvine is also ranked 48th in Best Undergraduate Teaching and 2nd in Top Performers on Social Mobility.

UCI is ranked 9th among top public schools, and its nursing program is ranked 31st in the U.S. 


According to Niche.com, UC Irvine is the 2nd best Hispanic serving institution, 3rd best college for criminal justice, and 14th best college for public health in America.

In the state of California, UC Irvine is the 2nd best college for education, the 4th top public school, and the 5th best college for business. UCI is also the 11th hardest college to get into in California.

Student Life at UC Irvine

The University of California, Irvine has the perfect environment to accommodate college beginners. The UCI campus is filled with exciting and colourful events for the perfect student life experience.

Festivals, concerts, comedy nights, and movie screenings are some of the events occurring annually on the UCI campus. 

On your arrival at the UC Irvine campus, you will find one of the best university housing systems. 

There are over 500 student organizations on the UCI campus, with about 50 fraternities and sororities for the best Greek life experience.

Also Read: UC Berkeley Acceptance Rate, Admissions, Tuition, SAT, ACT, Rankings

What Is the Acceptance Rate at the University of California, Irvine (UCI)?

The University of California, Irvine is the third institution that receives the largest number of applications in the United States.

According to admission statistics, UC Irvine received a total of 107,957 freshman applications, during the last admission cycle. UCI accepted 31,269 of those applications, leaving the acceptance rate at the university at 28.9%.

A year before the last admission cycle, the acceptance rate at UCI was 30%. UC Irvine is very selective in its admission process and only high schoolers who top their graduating class have a better chance of getting into Irvine. 

What is UC Irvine’s GPA Requirement?

High school GPAs are essential academic requirements in your quest for admission into a college or university. With an institution as selective as UC Irvine, the requirements for GPA should be high.

Let us look at how the latest freshman class at UC Irvine performed in GPA requirements.

The latest first-year students at UC Irvine had a median weighted GPA of 4.15, and a median unweighted GPA was 3.91.

To stand a better chance of getting into any major at UC Irvine, you will need an average high school GPA of 4.0.

SAT and ACT Requirements

Like any other academic requirement for admission, SAT scores are important during admission. Although the University of California, Irvine is test-optional, applicants can submit their test scores if they chose to. 

Applicants who intend to submit SAT scores should aim for an average of 1430 on the 1600 SAT scale.

Below are stats of the new SAT score by section.

SATScore Range
Critical Reading580-690


The highest ACT scores submitted by applicants will be considered by UC Irvine during admission. Applicants with an average ACT score of 33 have a better chance of getting into UC Irvine.

If you are submitting ACT scores, here is what your score range should look like.

ACTScore Range

What Are the First Year Application Requirements at UC Irvine?

The University of California, Irvine has a large undergraduate student body. The latest freshmen at the UC Irvine campus fulfilled the requirements for admission before they were admitted into the university.

Who does UC Irvine consider a first-year applicant?

Most applicants will focus on the acceptance rate at UCI, and forget about who the university considers a first-year applicant. So, who is an eligible first-year applicant?

You are a first-year applicant if you are still in high school or have graduated from one. If you have attended a summer session after graduating from high school, you are still eligible for freshman admission at UC Irvine.

If you plan to attend UC Irvine, here are the requirements for first-year admission.

UC Irvine Selection Criteria for Freshman Admission

The University of California, Irvine evaluates each application holistically to ascertain who is academically for admission. UC Irvine is interested in applicants’ participation in college preparatory coursework (A-G).

If you think you are a worthy candidate to be considered for admission, then you should meet the UC Irvine required college preparatory coursework.  

Besides academic achievement, UC Irvine is also interested in your extracurricular, initiatives, talents, and skills. The university is concerned about your contribution to the UC Irvine community. Ensure you include unique details about yourself, separating you from other applicants when responding to the personal insight questions. 

GPA Requirement

While taking the 15 required (A-G) subjects courses, you must receive at least a GPA of 3.0 (3.4 for out-of-state applicants) or higher, with a minimum grade of “C”.

A-G Course Requirements

Below are the Academic Subject Requirements for first-year admission.

SubjectsRequired Duration
History2 years (a year of world or European history, cultures, and geography. One year of U.S history or 1½ year of U.S history with 1½ of American government or civics)
English4 years
Mathematics3 years (4 years recommended and must include geometry, algebra, and advanced algebra)
Science2 years (must include 2 years of laboratory science. additional years may include applied science, engineering, computer science, etc.)
Foreign language2 years
Visual and performing arts1 year (including dance, music, drama/theatre, visual arts, or interdisciplinary arts)
College preparatory elective1 year

Examination Requirements

The University of California, Irvine will not consider your standardized (SAT/ACT) test scores for admission, nor will they be considered for a scholarship.

Once you are enrolled, UC Irvine may decide to use exams for some graduation requirements or class placement. Click here to find out more about the UC Irvine exam requirements. 

Personal Insight Questions 

UC Irvine is looking for applicants who, have something more to offer than academic records. Through the personal insight questions, you are given a voice to tell UC Irvine about yourself. 

The admission committee at UC Irvine wants to know things that matter to you, your ambition, motivation, experiences, and ambition.

UC Irvine will present eight questions, and you can respond to four. Each response to the personal insight questions must have a minimum of 350 words.

Please note: UC Irvine demands evidence of proficiency in English for successful study on campus.

How to Apply to UC Irvine

Once you have all the necessary application materials required by UC Irvine, it should be easy to follow the application process and apply. 

Here are the application materials you need to apply to UC Irvine. 

  • Transcripts: UC Irvine strongly recommends that you refer to your transcripts during the application. Ensure you fill out the application with accurate information on your transcripts. 
  • Test Scores: UC Irvine does not consider standardized (ACT/SAT) test scores for admission or scholarship.
  • Annual Income: The Annual Income weighs the parents’ income if a student is dependent and the student’s income if the student is independent. It is optional unless you are applying for the Education Opportunity Program or an application fee waiver. 
  • Social Security Number: UC Irvine uses the Social Security number to match your application to test scores reports and final transcripts. 
  • Citizenship Status: Through this, you are required to provide your nationality and citizenship. If you are a non-U.S citizen, you will need to present your visa type and immigration status.

Also Read: UC Berkeley Acceptance Rate By Major

Application Fees and Waivers 

The University of California, Irvine application fee is $70 for United States applicants and $80 for international and nonimmigrant applicants.

The application fees are non-refundable and can be paid with a credit card or by mail. 

Fee waivers are also available to eligible applicants.

Transcripts and Letter of Recommendation

UC Irvine does not require your official transcripts during your application, so you are advised not to submit them. You are only required to submit official transcripts when you are admitted to UC Irvine and they must be submitted to the Office of Admissions by the 1st of July.

Also Read: Best Schools for Biomedical Engineering

What Are the Requirements for Transfer Admission at UCI?

UC Irvine accommodates a large student body and transfer students are welcome to join the diverse community on campus. 

UCI has an acceptance rate that is very selective for regular admission and the same is expected for transfer admission. To stand a chance of getting into UC Irvine as a transfer applicant, here are the admission requirements to meet.

  • Before seeking transfer admission to UC Irvine, you must have completed 60 semesters or 90 UC transferable units. The units must be completed by the end of the spring semester before the fall semester. The required units must be completed with a minimum of 2.4 GPA (for California residents) 
  • You are required to complete 7 UC transferable college courses with at least a grade of C or higher in every course.

Please note: Non-California residents are required to have a minimum GPA of 2.8 to be eligible for transfer admission.

For more information about UC Irvine transfer admission requirements, click here.

What Is the Acceptance Rate For Transfer Students at UCI?

The transfer admission process at UC Irvine is very selective as well. Most of the transfer applicants applying to UC Irvine are required to have a minimum GPA of 2.4 for California residents and 2.8 for non-residents to be eligible for admission. 

In the last admission year, UC Irvine received a total of 21,470 transfer applications and admitted 8,924 students. The acceptance rate for transfer students at UCI in that particular admission cycle was 41.5%. 

Recently, the number of transfer applications received at UCI increased to 17%.

25,848 transfer applicants submitted their applications to UCI, and 9,776 of them were admitted, leaving the acceptance rate for transfer admission at 37.8%.

Admission Requirements for International Students 

International students make up 32% of graduate students at UC Irvine. This shows the diversity of the UCI community, with over 79 countries represented at the UC Irvine campus.

The University of California, Irvine welcomes all international applicants, eager to join the Anteaters family.

Applying to UC Irvine, as an international applicant simply indicate that you have completed high school and earned a diploma.

To be eligible for admission at UCI, here are the requirements to meet. 

Secondary School Requirements 

You will be considered a worthy candidate for admission, once you meet the subject requirements for first-year admission.

UC Irvine will consider your admission request if you have graduated from a secondary school and earned a certificate, appropriate for university admission in your home country. The secondary school certificate should be equivalent to a U.S high school diploma.

UC Irvine’s academic subject requirement must e completed with an average GPA of 3.4, and here are the subjects.

  • History (to be substituted with U.S history): 2 years 
  • English: 4 years
  • Mathematics: 3 years
  • College preparatory science: 2 years
  • Second language: 2 years

English Proficiency Requirements 

International applicants who received instructions in a different language are required to show proficiency in English. 

To demonstrate strong proficiency in English, here are the test and required scores.

  • TOEFL iBT or iBT Home Edition: minimum score of 80 or above. Paper delivered test: 60 or above 
  • IELTS: Minimum score of 6.5
  • Duolingo: minimum score of 115

The University of California, Irvine Tuition and Fees

Here is the estimated cost of attendance for undergraduate at UC Irvine.

Living At HomeLiving At HomeLiving On Campus*Living On Campus*Living Off CampusLiving Off Campus
Books and Supplies$1,346.00$1,346.00$1,346.00
Room and Board$7,100.00$17,412.00$14,964.00
Systemwide Fees$13,104.00$13,104.00$13,104.00
Campus Fees$3,482.68$3,482.683,482.68
Total Fees$16,586.68$16,586.68$16,586.68
Source: https://uci.edu/

Please note: Nonresidents of California should add $31,026 to the costs above.

UC Irvine Contact Address

  • School Address: University of California, Irvine Irvine, CA 92697
  • Phone: 949-824-5011

Frequently Asked Questions about UCI Acceptance Rate

Here are the frequently asked questions about the acceptance rate at UCI

What is the average GPA at UCI?

The GPA requirements at UCI demand an average of 3.0 for California residents and 3.4 for non-residents in the required subject courses. All 15 A-G subject courses must have a minimum of C or above.

Is UCLA or UCI harder to get into?

Among all UC campuses, the University of California, Los Angeles is the most selective when it comes to acceptance rate. 

In terms of selectivity, UCLA is more difficult to get into than UCI.

How hard is it to get into UC Irvine?

The recent admission statistics at UCI show an acceptance rate of 29% which is very selective. You will need an average GPA of 4.0 to get into UCI selective majors and an SAT score of 1430 and an ACT score of 33. 


With the information provided to you so far, we believe you are familiar with the acceptance rate for regular and transfer admission at UCI. The requirements for admission and how to apply to UCI shouldn’t be a problem for you anymore.

Arguably, UCI is very selective in its admission process, and if your application profile is suitable for admission, you have a better chance of getting into UCI.



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