UCSB Acceptance Rate 2023 | Admission, Requirements And How To Apply

The acceptance rate at UCSB (University of California Santa Barbara) is 32.2%. This means that for every 100 applicants, 32 are enrolled.

Because this school is highly selective, good academic scores are critical to improving your chances of admission. If you can score a 1480 SAT or 32 ACT or higher, you will have a good chance of getting in.

For a selective school like UCSB, rounding out the rest of your application will also help. Next, we will look at these details.


But if you apply with a score below a 1480 SAT or a 32 ACT, your chances of getting in are unfortunately slim. There are too many other applicants with high SAT/ACT scores and strong applications for you to compete with.

Why Choose University of California Santa Barbara?

The University of California, Santa Barbara is a public research university and is considered one of the most prestigious universities in the United States. The university has 30 school-based research centers and institutes, so it can focus on research in various fields.

U.S. News and World Report ranked the university fifth among US public universities, 30th among “National Universities” and 37th among the world’s best universities in its 2019 rankings.

It has an engineering school, the UC Santa Barbara College of Engineering, which is relatively small, but it offers graduate students to choose between chemical engineering; electrical engineering and computer engineering; computer science; materials; and mechanical engineering.

The School of Engineering also offers unique interdisciplinary academic programs such as the Technology Management Program and the Media Arts and Technology Program.

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Is UCSB Hard To Get Into?

Chances of getting into UCSB are uncertain. But with a better grade, SAT or ACT score, GPA, and a good academic profile, you will have a better chance of admission.


UCSB uses a holistic admissions policy, evaluating each application received for admission. According to UC Santa Barbara’s admissions office, they consider both academic and non-academic factors when considering an applicant’s qualifications for admission.

Some of the non-academic factors include the student’s extracurricular achievements and demonstrated abilities that will contribute to intellectual life and standing at UCSB.

UCSB received 105,647 applications for the Class of 2025 and enrolled 30,823 of that group. This corresponds to an acceptance rate of 29%.

The previous year, they received 90,963 applications and accepted 33,385 people, which is 37% of the eligible applications. The acceptance rate was 30% for the class of 2023.

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What Is UCSB Acceptance Rate 2023?

The acceptance rate UCSB (University of California, Santa Barbara) is 32.2%. This means that for every 100 applicants, 32 are admitted. This means that the school is very selective.

If you meet UCSB’s requirements for GPA, SAT/ACT, and other application components, you have an excellent chance of getting in. But if you don’t meet your GPA or SAT/ACT score, you’ll have a very low chance of being accepted, even if you meet the other admissions requirements.

All students applying to UC Santa Barbara are skeptical about their chances of success. UCSB’s acceptance rate is very low. Therefore, students need to carefully prepare for receiving an offer letter. In previous years, the average GPA requirement for UC Santa Barbara was 3.96 on a 4.0 scale.

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What Is UCSB Transfer Acceptance Rate 2023?

With a transfer acceptance rate of about 50% and one-third of our entering class being transfer students, UCSB is a transfer-friendly campus where your educational goals are our top priority.

The application for autumn admission opens on August 1 and must be submitted by November 30 of the year preceding the transfer.

Priority consideration for admission is given to students transferring directly from a California community college, but applications are open to applicants from all colleges/universities.

UCSB only allows transfer students applying for junior transfer for the fall quarter. Students interested in transferring to a sophomore level should review our transfer requirements and prepare to transfer to the junior level.

Graduate students are not eligible to transfer to UCSB and may apply to the Division of Graduate Studies to pursue a master’s degree.

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UCSB Acceptance Rate by Major

UCSB has a major acceptance rate of 32%, but this percentage may not be the same for each year. In some years, the percentage may be slightly higher or lower than this.

When applying to the University of California, Santa Barbara, it is advisable to take into account the fact that the competition for admission to the University of California, Santa Barbara is very high.

So, before you even plan to apply to UCSB, it’s a good idea to weigh your academic grades and profile, such as your GPA, your GPA, your high school grades, and your overall academic and extracurricular records.

UCSB Admission Requirements

Each school requires an application with the bare essentials – a high school transcript and GPA, an application form, and other basic information. Many schools, as explained above, also require SAT and ACT scores, as well as letters of recommendation, application essays, and interviews.

Admission requirements are as follows:

  • Academic references
  • All degrees, documents on previous education
  • A course-by-course assessment
  • All materials must be in English or provided with a translation
  • Confirmation of English language proficiency
  • Official standardized test scores for US study
  • Resume
  • Portfolio
  • SOP
  • Interview
  • Financial statement/confirmation of funding
  • LOR
  • Copy of passport.

International students require ATA graded transcripts to be submitted as part of the admissions process.

A mandatory, nonrefundable International Proficiency Assessment fee of $50 is charged to all applicants seeking a bachelor’s degree who have completed post-secondary coursework outside the United States. Documents are not returned, so only photocopies are required.

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UCSB Transfer Requirements

UC Santa Barbara typically accepts transfer students for the fall semester only. In order to prepare for entry into the junior year, students are encouraged to decide on their intended major as early as possible and to complete the required courses for their major.

All transfer applicants must complete these requirements by the spring semester before transferring:

  • Complete 60 semester or 90 quarter units of transferable college credit with a GPA of at least 2.4 for California residents and at least 2.8 for nonresidents (no more than 14 semester or 21 quarter units may be taken for credit/failure). The selective GPA for most majors is 3.4 or higher.
  • Complete the following seven course requirement with a grade of C or better in each:
  • Two portable English composition courses.
  • One transferable math course other than intermediate algebra, such as college algebra, precalculus, or statistics.
  • Four transferable courses from at least two of the following fields: arts and humanities, behavioral and social sciences, biological and physical sciences.
  • California college students can take advantage of UCSB’s Transition to Admission Guarantee (TAG) by completing certain course requirements with a certain grade point average and meeting deadlines. TAG does not apply to majors in the College of Creative Studies, the College of Engineering, and dance, music, and theater majors in the College of Letters and Science.

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What GPA Do I Need To Get Into UCSB?

The average GPA at UCSB is 4.12. With a GPA of 4.12, UCSB requires you to be at the top of your class. You’ll need near A’s in all your classes to compete with other applicants. Plus, you have to take tough classes — AP or IB courses — to show that college-level academics are a breeze.

If you’re a current junior or senior, it’s difficult to change your GPA in time for college. If your GPA is at or below the 4.12 high school GPA, you will need a higher SAT or ACT score to make up for it. This will help you compete effectively with other applicants who have higher GPAs than you.

Many schools have a minimum GPA requirement, but often this is just the bare minimum needed to apply without immediate rejection.

The GPA requirements that really matter is the GPA you need to have a real chance of getting in. To do this, we look at the school’s average GPA for its current students.

What Are The Decision Dates?


  • August 1: Begin your UC application
  • October 1: File a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) OR California Dream Act Application (California residents only)
  • October 1 – November 30: Submit your UC application
  • March 2: Submit FAFSA or Cal Grant GPA Verification Form (California Residents Only)
  • Mid-March: Review your admissions decision
  • April: Attend a UCSB Open House or campus tour
  • May 1: File a Statement of Intent to Enroll (SIR)
  • Mid-May: Registration for orientation
  • May 16: Apply for on-campus housing by 4:00 PM PT
  • July 1: Submit official transcripts
  • July 15: Submit official test scores (AP, IB, TOEFL, IELTS, Duolingo). Taking the SAT and/or ACT may help with college admissions in some circumstances, but it is not required. SAT and ACT scores are not used in the admissions process.

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How to apply to UC Santa Barbara

UC Santa Barbara, which accepts just under one-third of applicants, has a selective admissions process with above-average grades and standardized test scores.

However, UC Santa Barbara, like all other UC schools, has a comprehensive admissions process and an optional test, so the admissions committee evaluates students not only on numerical data.

As part of the program, students are required to write four short personal essays. Because UCSB is part of the University of California system, students can easily apply to multiple schools within the system with a single application.

Students who show special talent or have a compelling story to tell will often be looked at closely, even if their grades and test scores are slightly below par. Impressive extracurricular activities and strong essays are essential components of a successful application to UCSB.

Please note that applying California residents must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher but no lower than C in 15 “a-g” college preparatory courses. For non-residents, your GPA must be 3.4 or higher. Local students from participating high schools can also qualify if they are in the top 9% of their class.

Due to UCSB’s selective nature, the university has a comprehensive freshman selection process. A number of art, music, and writing programs in UCSB’s College of Creative Studies require auditions or portfolio submissions.

UC Santa Barbara, like all other UC schools, does not accept recommendation letters unless specifically requested. The University does not offer interviews for admission.

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The overall acceptance rate for UC Santa Barbara is around 36.1%. The acceptance percentage for Indian students is around 14%. Gaining admission to STEM courses here can be somewhat difficult for students due to the reputation of the university and the large number of students who apply.

UC Santa Barbara requires a GRE score of around 300. This is an average score that will give a student a good chance of admission.

UCSB’s campus spans 1,000 acres and has all the amenities a student could need. The library has millions of volumes and the campus boasts state-of-the-art recreation centers. The campus also has excellent facilities for sports.

UCSB offers on-campus housing to its students, and nearly 30% of students choose to live on campus. The rest choose to live off campus.

The most popular off-campus residence is Isla Vista (IV), despite high rents. Students end up paying about $10,000 a year for an apartment. Goleta is another popular place to live off campus.

UCSB Acceptance Rate 2023 FAQs

What is the average SAT composite score at UCSB?

The average SAT composite score at UCSB is 1355 on the SAT scale of 1600. This makes UCSB moderately competitive for SAT scores. The 25th percentile of the New SAT is 1230, and the 75th percentile of the New SAT is 1480. In other words, a 1230 New SAT means you are below average, while a 1480 puts you above average.

What is the average ACT score at UCSB?

The average ACT score at UCSB is 29. This score makes UCSB moderately competitive on ACT scores. The 25th percentile for the ACT is 26 and the 75th percentile for the ACT is 32. Even though UCSB probably says they don’t have a minimum ACT requirement, if you’re applying with a 26 or below, you’re going to have a really hard time get in, unless there is something else very impressive in your application.

Is UCSB A Good School?

With 10 national centers and institutes and more than 100 research units, UC Santa Barbara offers unparalleled learning opportunities for undergraduate students. The world-class faculty includes six Nobel Laureates, two Academy Award and Emmy Award winners, and recipients of the Pulitzer Prize, the Millennium Technology Award, the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, and the Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics.


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