Last Updated on August 12, 2023 by Oluwajuwon Alvina
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At the University of California, Santa Barbara, the average GPA is 3.3. This is a very competitive school with a high number of applicants each year. The applicant pool is made up of mostly California residents with an average GPA of 3.4 and SAT scores ranging from 1140 to 1360 (including writing).
Approximately 70% of students who apply are admitted each year. Of those admitted students, 55% enroll in the school. Students come from all over the world to attend UCSB including students from China, India, South Korea and many other countries around the world including countries in Europe as well as Latin America and Africa.
The campus itself is beautiful with palm trees everywhere you look as well as beautiful ocean views throughout most of campus on both sides where you can see Santa Monica Bay or Pacific Ocean depending on which side you’re on (you’ll get to enjoy both!).
There are over 200 majors at UCSB that cover everything from Biology to English Literature & Language Arts; Music Theory/Composition; Computer Science/Information Technology; Physics & Astronomy; Psychology/Psychiatry; Social Science/Anthropology/Sociology; Mathematics/Statistics; Business Administration/Management Information Systems
UC Santa Barbara Average GPA
What Is University Of California-Santa Barbara’s Acceptance Rate?
Last year University of California-Santa Barbara’s acceptance rate was 0.0. However, check out how the acceptance rate has changed over time.
As you can see, University of California-Santa Barbara is getting more and more difficult to get into. If this trend continue it’s likely that UCSB will be even more competitive by the time you apply.
Acceptance rate alone does not indicate your likelihood for getting into UCSB – it’s a very high level understanding of the true competition. Use the acceptance rate as a general guide for curating a list of 10-15 schools that fall into different ranges of competitiveness. Then, use the below data to get a deeper understanding of how your application will compare to the rest of the pool.
Colleges With Low Acceptance Rate
UCSB SAT Scores and GPA
What are UCSB’s average SAT scores and GPA? In this guide, we’ll discuss what scores are needed for you to get admitted into UCSB. You’ll also get to calculate your own chances with our admissions calculator.
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
This school is also known as: UCSB, UC Santa Barbara, University of California, Santa Barbara
UCSB Admissions Statistics
There are three critical numbers when considering your admissions chances: SAT scores, GPA, and acceptance rate. All these combine to tell you what you scores are required to get into University of California, Santa Barbara.
Average SAT: 1355
The average SAT score composite at UCSB is a 1355.
UCSB SAT Score Analysis (New 1600 SAT)
The 25th percentile New SAT score is 1230, and the 75th percentile SAT score is 1480.
In other words, a 1230 places you below average, while a 1480 will move you up to above average. There’s no absolute SAT requirement at UCSB, but they really want to see at least a 1230 to have a chance at being considered.
Here’s the breakdown of new SAT scores by section:
Section Average 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
Math 690 610 770
Reading + Writing 665 620 710
Composite 1355 1230 1480
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Average GPA: 4.12
The average GPA at UCSB is 4.12. This makes UCSB Extremely Competitive for GPAs.
(Most schools use a weighted GPA out of 4.0, though some report an unweighted GPA.
With a GPA of 4.12, UCSB requires you to be at the top of your class. You’ll need nearly straight A’s in all your classes to compete with other applicants. You should also have taken plenty of AP or IB classes to show your ability to excel in academic challenge.
If you’re a junior or senior, your GPA is hard to change from this point on. If your GPA is at or below the school average of 4.12, you’ll need a higher SAT score to compensate and show that you’re prepared to take on college academics. This will help you compete effectively with other applicants.
Admissions Rate: 32.2%
The acceptance rate at UCSB is 32.2%. In other words, of 100 students who apply, 32 are admitted.
This means the school is quite selective. If you have strong academic scores, you have a great shot at getting in.
Final Admissions Verdict
Because this school is quite selective, strong academic scores are critical to improving your chances of admission. If you’re able to score a 1480 SAT or above, you’ll have a very strong chance at getting in. But if you get a 1230 SAT or below, it’ll be a steep uphill battle for you to get admitted.
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What are your chances of admission at University of California, Santa Barbara?
Chances of admission with these scores:
Here’s our custom admissions calculator. Plug in your numbers to see what your chances of getting in are.
Pick your test: New SAT ACT
Note: Your admission decision relies not only on your GPA and SAT/ACT scores, but also on your coursework difficulty, extracurriculars, letters of recommendation, and personal statements. This tool provides only a simplistic estimate of your chances of admission. Instead of treating this tool as a crystal ball, we recommend you consider the big picture of what your chance means:
80-100%: Safety school: Strong chance of getting in
50-80%: More likely than not getting in
20-50%: Lower but still good chance of getting in
5-20%: Reach school: Unlikely to get in, but still have a shot
0-5%: Hard reach school: Very difficult to get in
We recommend you apply to schools across a range of chances. Applying to some safety schools will guarantee you have a college to go to, while applying to some reach schools will give you a shot at getting into the school at the top of your range.
How would your chances improve with a better score?
Try to take your current SAT score and add 160 points to the calculator above. See how much your chances improve?
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Colleges with Low Entry Requirements
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Other Schools For You
If you’re interested in UCSB, you’ll probably be interested in these schools as well. We’ve divided them into 3 categories depending on how hard they are to get into, relative to UCSB.
Reach Schools: Harder to Get Into
These schools are have higher average SAT scores than UCSB. If you improve your SAT score, you’ll be competitive for these schools.
School Name Location SAT Avg ACT Avg
New York University New York, NY 1440 32
University of Michigan Ann Arbor, MI 1435 33
Emory University Atlanta, GA 1435 33
Boston College Chestnut Hill, MA 1420 33
Boston University Boston, MA 1420 32
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Troy, NY 1409 31
Villanova University Villanova, PA 1395 33
Same Level: Equally Hard to Get Into
If you’re competitive for UCSB, these schools will offer you a similar chance of admission.
School Name Location SAT Avg ACT Avg
Binghamton University Vestal, NY 1375 30
Lehigh University Bethlehem, PA 1365 31
University of Texas at Austin Austin, TX 1355 30
University of Texas at Dallas Richardson, TX 1350 30
University of Washington Seattle, WA 1340 30
Stony Brook University Stony Brook, NY 1335 29
California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo San Luis Obispo, CA 1335 29
Safety Schools: Easier to Get Into
If you’re currently competitive for UCSB, you should have no problem getting into these schools. If UCSB is currently out of your reach, you might already be competitive for these schools.
School Name Location SAT Avg ACT Avg
University of Connecticut Storrs, CT 1315 29
Rochester Institute of Technology Rochester, NY 1300 30
University of Massachusetts Amherst Amherst, MA 1290 29
Syracuse University Syracuse, NY 1275 28
United States Military Academy West Point, NY 1270 28
Penn State University Park University Park, PA 1265 28
University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OH 1265 27
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High Acceptance Rate Colleges
Type UCSB into Google Images, and you’ll see immediately why the University of California, Santa Barbara is consistently ranked one of the most beautiful colleges in the nation. I mean, just look at the header on this blog post–you’re basically having class on the beach!
ucsb admissions -magoosh
Located 100 miles north of Los Angeles, University of California, Santa Barbara sits atop the Santa Barbara cliffs, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. But there’s a lot more to UCSB than the sun and sand.
UC Santa Barbara is divided into three colleges and two professional schools: the College of Letters & Science, the College of Engineering, the College of Creative Studies, the Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, and the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education. So you have a lot to choose from!
One of the ten major campuses affiliated with the University of California (think also UC Riverside, UC Santa Cruz), UCSB is currently ranked as the 8th best public school in the nation and offers its students a high level education for an amazing value (especially if you’re a California resident).
UCSB admissions -magoosh
Before we dive into a thorough discussion of just exactly how you can make Santa Barbara your home, let’s take a quick look at some UCSB admissions statistics. You can also read more about how to get into UCSB here!
UCSB Quick Admissions Statistics (For the Class of 2024)
UCSB SAT scores (average composite score of admitted students)
1260 – 1460 out of 1600 (middle 50% of students accepted)
UCSB ACT scores (average composite score of admitted students)
25 – 33 (middle 50% of students accepted)
UCSB Average GPA
UCSB Acceptance Rate
UCSB SAT Scores
First and foremost, here are a few things you should know if you plan to take the SAT and submit your scores to UCSB:
UCSB requires that all applicants submit SAT scores take the SAT with Essay.
UCSB does not require SAT subject tests, but certain programs recommend taking particular tests to satisfy prerequisite requirements or generally strengthen your application. (For example, the College of Engineering recommends that all applicants take the Math Level 2 subject test.)
UCSB does not “superscore” the SAT scores you submit, meaning that–unlike many schools–they will not take the highest scores across all sections across for all testing date scores submitted. Instead, you will have to choose the scores from a single testing date to send in.
So then, what do you actually need to score on your SAT to have a good shot at admission to UCSB?
The average SAT score of students admitted to UCSB is about 1360.
The 25th percentile of UCSB SAT scores is 1260
The 75th percentile of UCSB SAT scores is 1460
What does this mean? Well, since the average UCSB SAT score is 1360, if you score lower than 13600 that places you below average compared to other students applying to UCSB. A 1460 will put you above average compared to other applicants. We recommend shooting for that 75% mark and taking the SAT as many times as necessary to get there.
The breakdown for each of the SAT sections are as follows:
Math 620 – 770
Evidence-Based Reading and Writing 620 – 720
Essay 15 – 19
Start your sat prep today.
UCSB ACT Scores
Here are important some things to know about submitting your ACT scores to UCSB:
The Writing portion of the ACT is required.
UCSB does not superscore the ACT either, but they will take your highest composite ACT score of all testing dates.
For an excellent chance of getting accepted to UCSB, you’ll want to aim for 33 or higher.
The average ACT score UCSB admitted students is 29, with percentile distribution as follows:
The 25th percentile of UCSB ACT scores is 25
The 75th percentile of UCSB ACT scores is 33
This means if you score a 29 or below, you’ll placing yourself below average compared the other applicants. A 33 or above and you’re looking good! Again, we recommend taking the ACT as many times as you need to in order to snag that 33.
Start your act prep today.
UCSB GPA Average
The average GPA of students admitted to UCSB is 4.18, which means you’ll want to be performing well in honors, AP, and IB classes to get that extra grade point boost.
Depending on how your school calculates your GPA, high grades in these types of classes can really bump up your overall GPA.
UCSB also has a minimum GPA requirement: 3.0 for California residents and 3.4 for non-residents. However, this GPA is calculated only from certain courses, and only if you took those courses during your sophomore or junior years.
Obviously this isn’t an excuse to slack off your freshman and senior years–but it does give you a little breathing room if you got off to a bumpy start at the beginning of high school.
UCSB Acceptance Rate
UCSB received 93,457 undergraduate applications this year, and admitted 26,920 students. Therefore the UCSB admissions rate is 29.6%.
Out of the percentage admitted, 18% were enrolled.
UCSB Freshman Profile
The University of Santa Barbara publicly releases some very interesting information on the undergraduate student body. Here are some of the facts and figure about this year’s current freshman class:
Asian, Asian-American, Pacific Islander 28%
Black/African American 5%
Native American, American Indian,
Native Alaskan, or Native Hawaiian 1%
First Generation 40%
California Residents 83%
Out of State Residents 5%
International Students 12%
The average GPA at UC Santa Barbara is around 3.4.
The average SAT score for admitted freshmen is about 1120 in Reading and Math, which is about the same as the national average (1120).
Courses at UC Santa Barbara are taught by award-winning faculty who have won numerous prestigious awards and fellowships. The university has been named one of the top 10 public schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, and ranks among Forbes’ America’s Best Colleges list.