University of California

The University of California recently released its Fall 2018 admissions data. KEY's experts did a thorough analysis on this year’s admission results and trends of the University of California in order to help you set realistic admission expectations for the coming year (Fall 2019) admission cycle.

This year, the admission rates are increased for non-residents (out of state and international students) and decreased for residents, as the University of California continues to recruit a larger mix of out of state and international students. However, the overall UC admission rates of international students dropped across all UC schools, due to the growth in applications outpaced the growth in admittances.

Key Findings

  • Overall, the freshman admission rate of UC schools as a whole decreased from 62% to 60%, as the growth in applications outpaced the growth in admittances. UCLA and Berkeley were again the most selective schools.
  • The mix of admitted student population remains steady at 66% in-state and 34% out-of-state and international. The total number of admitted students grew by 2,000, with a 55% growth of in-state students and a 45% growth of out-of-state and international.
  • Although the admitted percentage of out-of-state and international students remained almost unchanged, schools such as Davis, Irvine, Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz continue to recruit more out-of-state and international students.

 Highlights of Each School

Berkeley: The overall admission rate fell from 18% to 15% in 2018. There was a 5% growth in the total number of applications and a 13% decline in the total number of admitted students. The admission rate of international students remained steady. Berkeley was still the hardest one to gain admission for international students.

Davis: The overall admission rate fell from 44% to 41% in 2018. There was a 10% growth in the total number of applications and only a 4% growth in the total number of admitted students. The admission rate of international students dropped by 4% in 2018.

Irvine: The overall admission rate declined from 37% to 29% in 2018. The growth in the total number of applications and decline in the total number of admitted students cancelled out on each other (12% vs. 12%). The international admission rate declined by 6% in 2018. However, international admission rate is higher than the in-state admission rate (39% vs. 25%).

Los Angeles: The overall admission rate declined from 16% to 14% in 2018. There were an 11% application growth and a 3% decline in admitted students. The international admission rate went lower by 1.5%.

Merced: The overall admission rate declined from 75% to 71% in 2018. There was a 9% growth in the total number of applications and only a 3% growth in the total number of admitted students. The international admission rate remained steady (47.3% vs. 47.5%).

Riverside: The overall admission rate declined from 58% to 51% on a 12% surge in admitted students. However, the international admission rate declined by 4%.

San Diego: The overall admission rate declined from 34% to 30% in 2018. There was a 10% growth in the total number of application and a 2% decline in the total number of admitted students. The international admission rate declined from 33% to 29%.

Santa Barbara: The overall admission rate declined slightly by 1% in 2018. The 13% application growth slightly outpaced the 11% admit growth. Santa Barbara was the only school that had a growth (3.3%) in the international admission rate.

Santa Cruz: The overall admission rate declined from 55% to 48% in 2018. The total number of application grew by 14%. The number of admitted residents declined 14%, while out-of-state admits declined 4% and international admits grew 8%

Implications

•    The 2018 admission results of all UC schools indicate that the University of California continues its commitment in expanding California resident enrollment and decreasing non-resident enrollment.

•    Overall, the 2018 admission rates of all UC schools were lower than 2017 admission rates. International admission rates of all schools had gone lower as well. This indicates that it will be harder and harder to gain admissions from UC schools, especially harder from UC Berkeley, UCLA, and UC San Diego. Students and parents need to set realistic expectations for the 2018/2019 admission cycle.

•    Although the overall UC admission rate of 2018 was lower than in 2017, schools like Davis, Irvine, and Santa Cruz showed admission advantage for out-of-state and international students