Berkeley Acceptance Rate

February 10, 2022
By AdmissionSight

Berkeley Acceptance Rate: 18.3%

Shortcuts to sections offered for Berkeley prospective students and Berkeley acceptance rate:

Successful Applicant Profile

• Demographics
• Majors
• SAT/ACT Scores

Entry Requirements

• Tuition
• Scholarships
• Checklist of Application Requirements
• Application Deadliness

What Should You Expect?

• Student life
• Academics offered
• Athletics offered
• Notable alumni

The University of California, Berkeley – or Berkeley for short – is undoubtedly one of the very best public research universities in the United States.

First founded in 1868, and amongst the founding 14 schools of the Associations of American Universities, Berkeley has become a major target school for some of the most accomplished and engaged high school students in the United States and abroad.

Berkeley is routinely ranked amongst the very top public universities in the world and is widely considered to have one of the most beautiful campuses in the country as well. For that reason, it is not surprising that tens of thousands of high school students apply to Berkeley each year. If you are one of those students, it is important for you to know important information such as the Berkeley acceptance rate.

Students at the University of California Berkeley campus enjoying a warm day outdoors on the grass.

In 2021,  the Berkeley acceptance rate was 18.3 percent. While that acceptance rate puts Berkeley amongst the most competitive public universities in the world, it also makes it quite a lot more accessible than the very toughest American schools to get into.

No matter what school you are planning on applying to, it is important to know a lot of basic information about those schools. From test scores to programs that are offered, to on-campus culture and more.

Here at AdmissionSight, we make it a priority to not only prepare students for college but also give them the very best chance they have at getting accepted to the school of their dreams.

For starters, let’s break down some of the most basic information about UC Berkeley. When it comes to testing scores and GPA, here is a simple truth. Students who get accepted to Berkeley score somewhere between a 30 and 35 on average on the ACT based on Berkeley acceptance rate.

The average range of scores for the SAT is 1350 to 1540. When it comes to a weighted GPA, students typically earn somewhere between a 4.0 and a 4.29 during their high school years. If their GPA is unweighted, that number should be somewhere between 3.89 and 4.0.

But of course, getting into any top school goes far beyond simply getting great scores on your standardized tests and in high school. So with those numbers out of the way, let’s get into how you can improve your chances of getting into UC Berkeley!

Successful Applicant Profile

As you certainly already know, Berkeley is amongst the most prestigious and competitive public schools in the country. In fact, it is currently ranked as the third best public university in the United States, only behind UCLA and the University of Michigan.

While Berkeley is of course not part of the prestigious Ivy League, it is certainly looked upon as one of the most impressive schools in the country and can open countless doors both during and after a student’s undergraduate years.

If you are looking to get into Berkeley, you are going to need to earn great grades and more considering the Berkeley acceptance rate! You will want to be able to tell a compelling story about yourself as a student and make it clear why you believe that you belong at Berkeley.

Last year, a total of 31,348 students enrolled at UC Berkeley. While the number of students who enroll each year is clearly huge, each class is only about a quarter of that. And because massive amounts of students apply each year (this year, it is expected that 80,000 will apply), spaces are clearly quite limited!

When it comes to what students commit their time to once they get an int, some of the most programs at in STEM, but others are within the humanities, arts, and more! Overall, the most popular majors include Social Sciences; Engineering; Biological and Biomedical Sciences; Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies; and Natural Resources and Conservation.

Students do not only get the benefit of a great school, however. They also get an incredible alumnus base and the fact that graduates from Berkeley will earn on average over $66,000 in their first year coming out of college.

If you can already see yourself attending UC Berkeley and getting one of the best public educations possible in the United States, here are the kinds of students who will make up your proud graduating class.

Demographics: Who attends UC Berkeley?

When it comes to the diversity of the student body at UC Berkeley, it is more diverse than the average school in more ways than one. In fact, when it comes to ethnic, gender, geographical, and overall diversity, Berkeley is above average.

Believe it or not, when it comes to ethnic diversity, white students do not even make up the largest portion of the student body. This is what a statistical breakdown looks like at UC Berkeley:

• Asian: 35.4%
• White: 26.3%
• Hispanic/Latino: 14.7%
• Non-Resident Alien: 12.9%
• Black or African American: 1.7%

As you can see, Berkeley is highly diverse and offers students of all colors and creeds the opportunity to learn and engage with people who are different from them. In fact, that is one of the many benefits of attending one of the best public schools in the country.

Due to in-state tuition options, compared to the prohibitively high costs of private schools, public schools are widely considered to be more diverse. It’s one of the many reasons why a public-school education may be right for you!

When it comes to gender diversity, over half of the student body at Berkeley identifies as female. Berkeley is known as one of the most liberal universities in the country and is proud of the open and loving environment it has created for students no matter their race, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, and more.

On top of that, Berkeley is also home to thousands of international students who have come from all over the world to get an elite education. Over the last 15 years, the number of international students at Berkeley has increased from 2,688 in 2004 to 6,833 last year!

If you are an international student and are curious about how many of your fellow countrymen and women are already at Berkeley, take a look at this table that Berkeley proudly published on its own site.

Berkeley admissions percentage of students in the world

What are the average test scores and grades of students at Berkeley?

While your standardized test scores are not the only thing that matters when it comes to your chances of getting into Berkeley, they are undoubtedly important! For that reason, it is important for you to know what kinds of scores you will want to aim for as you prepare to take either the SAT or ACT, both of which Berkeley accepts.

For the SAT, the average score of students who are accepted at UC Berkeley is 1415 out of 1600. The 25th percentile of the score is 1300 and the 75th percentile of the sore is 1530.

That means that if you score under 1300, you will be below average amongst applicants and if your score 1530, you will be above average amongst applicants.

In the cast of the ACT, the average score of students who are accepted to UC Berkeley is 31. That 25th percentile ACT score is 28 and the 75th percentile is 34. While there is no required score when it comes to applying to Berkeley, it is known that they want to see at least a 28 for students who they seriously consider and ultimately accept.

Finally, when it comes to a student’s GPA, the average unweighted GPA of students who are accepted to Berkeley is a 3.89. That is nearly a perfect 4.0 throughout high school.

If you are worried about your ability to earn that high of a GPA in your high school years, one great way to improve your GPA is to take courses that come with weighted grades. That way, you may be able to actually get over 4.0 marks on your GPA which can do wonders for your overall average.

These are important numbers to pay attention to, but they are not the only thing that you should be thinking about when it comes to your application. Here at AdmissionSight, we make sure that our students are focusing on every aspect of their college applications to make sure that they are as perfect as possible!

This takes us to the next section of this list!

Entry Requirements

The journey that you will go on from applying to UC Berkeley to your very first day on campus as a student is a long and hard one considering the Berkeley acceptance rate! There is a lot that will go into you figuring out which school is the very best for you, and it might not end up being Berkeley!

Some of the most important factors to keep in mind when it comes to figuring out which school is best for you to include understanding the costs, finding out about possible financial aid options, and more.

It is also incredibly important that no matter what school you end up going to, you should be sure that you get your application well before the deadline.

UC Berkeley may very well be your dream university, but you are going to first want to understand the basics of admission and know the Berkeley Acceptance rate.

This will not only help you increase your chances of getting into the school, but it will also help you find ways to avoid attending the school only to get yourself saddled with thousands of dollars worth of student loan debt. On top of that, learning as much as you can about the nuts and bolts of the application process will also help you prepare for that.

So, without further delay, here is everything that you will want to know about applying to UC Berkeley.

How much will it cost to attend?

One important thing to keep in mind is that because UC Berkeley is a public school, there are two very different tuitions that they offer based on whether or not a student is applying from within the state of California and is a resident of that state. Here are the two basic cost breakdowns from the previous school year that you can find on the school’s site.

No matter if you are applying from within the state of California, or are an out-of-state applicant, it is quite clear that UC Berkeley can be very expensive. Luckily, there are a lot of financial aid options that incoming students can apply for and benefit from.

Financial aid at UC Berkeley

When it comes to financial aid at Berkeley, the school proudly states that over 65 percent of its undergrad students receive aid.

For students who do end up receiving aid, the average amount of financial aid that is offered to incoming freshmen comes out to $23,542.

If you are thinking about applying to Berkeley but you are not sure how to go about getting your application started, the school itself makes it very easy for you! Here are quick directions on how to apply, as well as a useful “Calculator” that can help students figure out whether or not they are eligible for aid from the very beginning.

Application requirements

If you are looking to get into Berkeley, you will first of course want to know about the application requirements aside from the Berkeley acceptance rate, that you will have to meet in order to be considered.

Students who apply to Berkeley must need the following minimum requirements:

  • Meet the A-G subject course requirements
  • Have a 3.0 GPA in A-_G courses taken in the 10th and 11th-grade years of high school (3.4 GPA required for non-residents)
  • Take either the SAT reasoning exam or the ACT exam

Keep in mind that the minimum requirements are not considered to be enough considering the Berkeley acceptance rate. The school assesses each applicant based on a holistic review of a student’s academic performance. This includes consideration of the following:

  • Your weighted and unweighted UC grade point average (calculated using 10th and 11th-grade UC-approved courses only)
  • Your planned 12th-grade courses
  • Your pattern of grades over time
  • The number of college preparatory, Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), honors and transferable college courses you have completed
  • Your level of achievement in those courses relative to other UC applicants at your school
  • Your scores on AP or IB exams
  • Your scores on the ACT Assessment Plus Writing or the SAT Reasoning Test.

What are the important dates for your Berkeley application timeline?

For high schoolers, it is crucial to make sure that you are getting your college applications in on time in order to be considered.

The last thing you want to do is spend loads of time perfecting your application and knowing the Berkeley acceptance rate, only to miss the deadline. Here is a basic breakdown of dates to keep in mind when it comes to Berkeley’s application deadline.

Berkeley's application schedule for admission and Berkeley acceptance rate.

What Students Can Expect

No matter what school you want to go to, you need to make sure that it is truly the right school for you. One of the best ways to do that is to schedule a school visit. However, before that, another great way to get a feel for a school is to find out what students are saying about the school.

Thanks to the site Niche, current, and former students can write reviews of hundreds of universities and colleges around the U.S. Here is what students have said about UC Berkeley.

“I loved going to Berkeley It is a University full of intelligent, critical thinkers focused on social justice and change,” one student said. “They have some of the best professors and academics in the entire country.

Students walking and biking through the campus on a sunny day with Sather Tower in the background.

Tuition is affordable for in-state residents and they have an abundance of student programs for those who have financial needs. The campus is beautiful and nestled at the foot of the Berkeley hills. The city of Berkeley is laid back and close to major cities like Oakland and San Francisco.”

“The campus is beautiful and the professors are very helpful,” another said. “You learn a lot and even if it is confusing or difficult, the professors are always ready to help in their office hours. It is very rigorous, but also very rewarding. There are many resources available to students for all sorts of needs and they have been very helpful.

Another great thing about Cal is that communication with administration, professors, and anyone really, is encouraged. If you have a problem, almost always will you find someone to help you solve it. The surrounding area around campus, however, is not as wonderful.

There are many food places which are really nice, but I would recommend going with a group of friends especially at night. There are nice resources such as Bear Walk to help you feel safe when you are alone at night, but it is always good to remain vigilant.”

Academics at Berkeley

One of the many benefits of attending a large public university such as Berkeley is that they oftentimes offer a huge number of programs despite the Berkeley acceptance rate that you can invest your time and energy in. In fact, UC Berkeley proudly offers over 150 total undergrad majors and minors.

Some of the most popular include Economics, Social Sciences, Engineering, Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies, Mathematics, Statistics, Computer Science.

Athletics at Berkeley

Another great benefit of attending one of the top public universities in the United States is that many of them have fantastic athletic programs.

While Cal is not as dedicated to athletic excellence compared to schools like Michigan and the University of Texas at Austin, they have had some real eras of dominance in major sports.

In all, Cal is home to 30 Division I NCAA varsity teams. Over the course of history, the school has won a total of 107 team titles.

An American football player looking at the crowd of players in front of him.

Who are some famous UC Berkeley alumni?

Schools that are prestigious as Berkeley end up being home to men and women who go on to do great things. Here is a list of some of the most influential people who have walked through the halls at Berkeley as students:

  • George Takei, actor
  • David Ladd, engineer
  • Steve Wozniak, programmer, businessman
  • Abbie Hoffman, psychologist, actress
  • Melvin Belli, lawyer
  • Brenda Song, actress
  • Chris Pine, actor
  • Marsha Hunt, musician, novelist
  • Marshawn Lynch, football player
  • Gregory Peck, actor
  • Timothy Leary, psychologist

If you have dreams of one day seeing your name on that list, you are going to need more than the right grades and scores to get in! Let us at AdmissionSighta achieve your dream of becoming a Cal Bear by developing the very best application possible!

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