UChicago Regular Decision

July 20, 2022
By AdmissionSight

UChicago Regular Decision

The University of Chicago is a private university that John D. Rockefeller founded in 1890. For more than a century, it has shaped higher education and the intellectual lives of undergraduates. With a 217-acre campus on the shores of Lake Michigan, the University of Chicago has produced 94 Nobel laureates, the most of any American university.

Researchers from the University of Chicago were the first to split an atom, measure the speed of light, and create the discipline of sociology. The College, which includes on-campus law, business, molecular engineering, and medical schools, is the university’s largest academic division. It also includes 11 graduate divisions and professional schools.

The University of Chicago, located in Hyde Park, provides a vibrant campus environment in the heart of the city. The university offers postgraduate programs in addition to its college, including those at the highly regarded Booth School of Business, Law School, Pritzker School of Medicine, and Harris School of Public Policy Studies. The University Athletic Association is home to 18 NCAA Division III teams for the Chicago Maroons, who also have successful basketball and wrestling programs.

University campus surrounded by trees.

Even the most intelligent students face new challenges every day. The university is a top-tier research university that also houses a liberal arts college. Students have access to the vast resources of the research university in the majority of departments, and they frequently interact closely with graduate students. The faculty and student body’s diversity of thought fosters constant intellectually stimulating debates. Aside from music, theater, shopping, dining, museums, movies, parks, ethnic neighborhoods, nightlife, and Lake Michigan, the city also offers a wealth of diverse attractions.

When Is Uchicago’s Regular Decision Due?

The UChicago regular decision plan is the standard, non-binding application. Many of you might be curious when is UChicago’s regular decision due. The deadline for submission is on January 4 and decisions will be sent out by late March. Regular Decision applicants do not have to commit to attending if accepted, and they have more than a month to let us know if they will. The applicants’ reply date must not be later than May 2nd.

Regular Decision may be the best option for you if you believe that you can prepare a stronger application by January than by November and would like to be able to compare admissions offers and financial aid packages from various colleges.

An admissions decision of admit, deny, or waitlist will be given to the UChicago Regular Decision applicants.

How Selective Is Uchicago?

It is very challenging to get accepted to UChicago. Representing a 6.3 percent acceptance rate, 2,408 out of 37,986 applicants who applied to UChicago in 2021 were accepted. To see how selective is UChicago, you may take a look at different factors below:

Academic background of accepted University of Chicago students on average

The information below was taken from the UChicago Class of 2024 profile page.


Although UChicago does not disclose its average GPA, you will need to receive all A’s (or nearly all A’s) in the most challenging courses available at your high school since it is a very selective institution.


The middle 50% of ACT scores fell between 34 and 35. The middle 50% of SAT scores ranged from 1510 to 1560. However, the university also accepted applicants with scores in the 20–36 and 1020–1600 ranges.

Class Rank

In their high school classes, 99 percent of admitted students were among the top 10 percent.

It is evident that almost all University of Chicago students have excellent GPAs and test scores. Admissions officers assess applicants based on more than just academic performance, and one of those factors is how and why they are motivated intellectually. When deciding whether to admit you, UChicago admissions officers consider your entire application, including your GPA, test scores, extracurricular activities, work experience, class rank, recommendations, and essays.

All of these elements are significant and taken into account. The list of particularly significant factors that admissions officers take into account when selecting students is provided below.

How Applications Are Assessed at UChicago?

Writing Ability

UChicago evaluates applicants based on their writing abilities, in contrast to some other schools, even if they are applying as a STEM major. This is accomplished in part by UChicago’s peculiar prompts, which inspire students to think creatively and unconventionally. These questions give admissions officers the chance to assess your intellectual motivation and how your background differs from others in ways that benefit the environment at UChicago.

Extracurricular Activities

Numerous admitted students participated in extracurricular activities at their high school, according to admissions data for the class of 2024. It is obvious that extracurricular activities play a significant role in admissions decisions, despite UChicago’s emphasis that no one activity, GPA, or test score will guarantee admission.

The following is a list of every extracurricular activity for the class of 2024:

Extracurricular Activity Percentage of Students
Religious Organization 15%
Editorial (newspaper, magazine, etc.) 22%
Theater 22%
Student Government 38%
Music 51%
Varsity Athletics 65%
Community Service 81%

Academic Intrigue

Students at UChicago are said to be looking for a rigorous institution where they can engage in a “fearless pursuit of truth.” Academics and learning are loved by UChicago students.

Two women talking in a table.

According to one UChicago student, the school was chosen “because it had the most demanding and diverse academic program.” The “theoretical approach to learning” and “niche” majors and classes appealed to another person. There is no doubt that University of Chicago students enjoy learning for learning’s sake. It will be beneficial if you emphasize this in your supplemental essays and through your extracurricular activities.

What Is Uchicago’s Acceptance Rate for Regular Admission?

The official number of applicants for the Class of 2026 has not yet been disclosed by the university. The school did reveal that the overall acceptance rate was 5%, which was the lowest recorder ever.

A total of 37,977 applications were received for the Class of 2025, 2460 of which were accepted, representing an acceptance rate of 6.48 percent. Given this low acceptance rate, what is UChicago’s acceptance rate for regular admission? Data on admissions for applicants who applied for Early Admission and the UChicago Regular Decision are not made public by the university.

What Are the Odds of Getting Off the Waitlist?

Nearly 2,468 of the 37,977 applicants who submitted applications for admission to the university last year were chosen. According to these data, the acceptance rate for UChicago is 6.5 percent. UChicago typically keeps waitlisted students’ information private.

Students walking in the hallway.

Now, what are the odds of getting off the waitlist? Unfortunately, the official number of applicants for Early Admission and the UChicago Regular Decision are not made public by the university. Waitlist acceptance rates are also usually withheld from the public. However, UChicago released some information and some suggestions for what to do next if UChicago continues to be your top choice:

The school will inform you by early summer if they are able to offer you a spot from the waitlist if you have not yet been offered a spot in the Class of 2026. The waitlist at UChicago is not ranked. Here’s what you have to do if you have been admitted to the waitlist:

  • Sign in to your UChicago Account and confirm your waitlist spot. This is the way to inform us if you still want to attend UChicago.
  • Accept a spot at another school by May 2 to ensure you have a place to call home for the upcoming academic year. Please notify the other school as soon as possible that you won’t be attending if we are able to offer you a spot in the class and you decide to accept it.
  • Briefly explain to your local admissions counselor why UChicago continues to be your top choice.

How Do You Increase Your Chances of Getting into Uchicago?

You must aim higher than just working hard in your classes if the question of how to get into UChicago is on your mind. You must understand in detail why UChicago is the best place for you.

Old University building in UChicago.

You might find it advantageous that the University of Chicago offers a distinct Creative Writing major as opposed to a concentration in the English department. Or perhaps you’re curious about the interdisciplinary major in comparative human development. However, you need to provide more information than just the names of the programs. Let’s find out the answer to “how do you increase your chances of getting into UChicago?”:

The Various Application Processes

If you’re considering how to get into UChicago, you must decide whether you want to submit an early application or not. In contrast to most schools, UChicago offers both Early Action and Early Decision, as well as Early Decision II. One of the few schools, UChicago, allows applicants to submit their applications in one of the following four ways:

  • Early Action
  • Early Decision I
  • Early Decision II
  • Regular Decision

Knowing which application round you’ll submit in enables you to set a deadline and hold yourself responsible for having all of your materials prepared on time. You can apply Early Action (EA) or Early Decision I if you like UChicago, are confident in your grades and extracurricular activities, and finish your essay early (ED I). However, if you’re still unsure and unprepared, you can always go for the UChicago regular decision admission.

Consider your best option in advance to avoid rushing to finish your essays or the Common Application at the last minute.

Academic Prerequisites

If you’re looking into how to get into UChicago, you should be aware that this university has very high standards for academic performance. You’ve got your work cut out for you because admitted students have an average GPA of almost 4.0.

To show the admissions officers that you can handle the demands of a university, you must start working hard in the ninth grade and enroll in the toughest classes possible. You must also fulfill the requirements for the following high school classes:

Students should take 4 years of English, 3-4 years of math (pre-calculus is recommended), 3-4 of laboratory sciences, 3-4 years of social sciences, and 2-3 of a foreign language.

Unless you can’t follow these guidelines at all or you want to give an elective more priority because it aligns better with your academic interests, it is “recommended” that you do so.

Keep yourself organized from the start of high school, especially if you anticipate applying to a university of the caliber of UChicago, to avoid having your GPA be the factor that disqualifies you from consideration.

Learning About the Test Optional Policy

In 2018, UChicago made test submissions optional, so if you don’t want to submit your SAT or ACT scores as part of your application, you don’t have to. This choice was made to help students who struggle on tests or lack the resources to perform well on them.

Since tests were made optional, the averages at UChicago have increased because only those students who received the highest scores sent their results. If your results are closer to the 1300s it’s best to skip including that and keep the focus on extracurriculars and other parts of your application that can help the school recognize your strengths. If you have a really high Math score or your SAT score is 1490 you might consider sending it in.

After all, unlike your test score, which is only a byproduct of one day, your GPA and extracurricular activities serve as a more accurate reflection of your performance over the last four years.

Character Reference Letters

The University of Chicago requests letters of recommendation from two of your teachers in order to get a sense of what it would be like to have you as a student there.

UChicago advises that the letters come from professors who have instructed you in one of the following subjects: mathematics, social studies, history, science, English or literature, foreign language, or any other class where you have participated in active class discussion or read, written, or written assignments in significant amounts

Make sure the teachers writing your recommendations are knowledgeable about you and how you work and are able to provide specifics about why you would be a benefit to the school. According to the website, “This does not necessarily need to be the teacher who gave you the best grades, but instead someone who best knows your academic personality and thinks highly of you.” What matters is whether they can verify your passions, skills, and best qualities.


You must not only have a high GPA but also excel in extracurricular activities to be given serious consideration for admission to the incoming class.

UChicago examines your list of activities “to see what’s meaningful, worthwhile, or interesting to you” but has “no specific expectation or preference for how you spend your time.” The admissions officers will assess how you have stepped outside of your comfort zone and made use of your resources. They won’t be impressed by just becoming a general member of a club and sticking with it.

The secret is to choose one or two things you’re really passionate about and assume leadership positions. The school wants to know that you are a self-assured person who stands up for what you believe in and can make a significant contribution to your community. It is strictly forbidden to pursue an activity solely because of what you believe the university wants to see.

You must exhibit sincere interest and passion for the subject matter, as well as seek out ways to have an impact on your neighborhood.

Personal Statement

UChicago is interested in learning more about your background and what makes you stand out from other applicants in addition to the impressive accomplishments you list on your resume. This can expand on having a leadership role in an activity that is important to you. The opportunity to “present yourself and your ideas in your own words” is what the university sees as its main benefit. Consider how you can use it to set yourself apart, even though it isn’t unique to UChicago. What can you bring to campus that others can’t?

The admissions office anticipates hearing from you. In your personal statement, you can effectively strengthen your application by describing your background, passions, and extracurricular activities. Here are the 2022-23 UChicago supplemental essay prompts:

Question 1 (Required)

How does the University of Chicago, as you know it now, satisfy your desire for a particular kind of learning, community, and future? Please address with some specificity your own wishes and how they relate to UChicago.

Question 2: Extended Essay (Required; Choose one)

Essay Option 1

Was it a cat I saw? Yo-no-na-ka, ho-ka-ho-ka na-no-yo (Japanese for “the world is a warm place”). Może jutro ta dama da tortu jeżom (Polish for “maybe tomorrow that lady will give a cake to the hedgehogs”). Share a palindrome in any language, and give it a backstory.

– Inspired by Leah Beach, Class of 2026, Lib Gray SB ’12, and Agnes Mazur AB ‘09

Essay Option 2

What advice would a wisdom tooth have?

–Inspired by Melody Dias, Class of 2025

Essay Option 3

You are on an expedition to found a colony on Mars, when from a nearby crater, a group of Martians suddenly emerges. They seem eager to communicate, but they’re the impatient kind and demand you represent the human race in one song, image, memory, proof, or other idea. What do you share with them to show that humanity is worth their time?

—Inspired by Alexander Hastings, Class of 2023, and Olivia Okun-Dubitsky, Class of 2026

Essay Option 4

UChicago has been affiliated with over 90 Nobel laureates. But, why should economics, physics, and peace get all the glory? You are tasked with creating a new category for the Nobel Prize. Explain what it would be, why you chose your specific category, and the criteria necessary to achieve this accomplishment.

—Inspired by Isabel Alvarez, Class of 2026

Essay Option 5

Genghis Khan with an F1 racecar. George Washington with a SuperSoaker. Emperor Nero with a toaster. Leonardo da Vinci with a Furby. If you could give any historical figure any piece of technology, who and what would it be, and why do you think they’d work so well together?

-Inspired by Braden Hajer, Class of 2025

Essay Option 6

And, as always… the classic choose your own adventure option! In the spirit of adventurous inquiry, choose one of our past prompts (or create a question of your own). Be original, creative, thought-provoking. Draw on your best qualities as a writer, thinker, visionary, social critic, sage, citizen of the world, or future citizen of the University of Chicago; take a little risk, and have fun!

The school is renowned for its extremely unique and eccentric supplemental essay questions. UChicago actually encourages you to talk more about who you are. Although the prompts certainly encourage a creative approach, your voice can be serious. The admissions committee is ultimately curious to see if you are a critical thinker who exhibits intellectual curiosity and enthusiasm for learning.

Deciding which school is the best fit for you would take months of consideration and preparation. Don’t panic! AdmissionSight is here to help you decide faster and to boost your application. You may start with booking a consultation with us and AdmissionSight is very excited to meet you.

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