Frequently Asked Questions
Are minimum grade-point averages, class ranks or test scores required for admission?
The Office of College Admissions reviews each application on a holistic basis — a complicated name for a very simple concept. The admissions committee considers a candidate’s entire application—academic and extracurricular records, essays, letters of recommendation, and SAT or ACT scores — in order to gain a comprehensive understanding of a student’s qualifications and potential. Learn more about our college admissions process.
Is it possible to transfer to UChicago from another college or university?
Yes. The University of Chicago defines a transfer applicant as a student who has completed one term as a full-time student in a degree-seeking program at another college or university.
Transfer students must attend the College for at least two academic years (six quarters) and complete the Core curriculum and at least half of their major with us. Tentative evaluations of transfer credit are conducted by the Office of the Dean of Students and mailed out over the summer to enrolling students. Learn more about transfer credit.
Does UChicago consider applicants who have been home schooled?
Yes. As a home-schooled applicant, you will have the same application requirements as any other candidate, plus the Home School Supplement to the Secondary School Report, which can be found on the Universal Application website or Common Application website.
Can students begin studies at UChicago during the spring quarter?
Unfortunately, first-year students are admitted for the fall quarter only.
The Application Process
When are applications due?
November 1 is our submission deadline for Early Action and Early Decision II. January 1 is our submission deadline for Early Decision II and Regular Decision.
Does UChicago require interviews?
Interviews are not required for admission into the College but can be a way for students to learn more about the University of Chicago. We offer on campus interviews as well as alumni interviews around the world, both of which are treated equally in the admission process. More information on interviews.
Is financial aid available?
Yes. Our financial aid policy is need-based, meaning we guarantee to meet all demonstrated financial need from each student’s family. Each financial aid package is tailored to the student and family’s particular financial profile; we require a few forms in order to offer you an appropriate package. Although you may apply for financial aid at any time, we recommend that you apply for aid when you apply for admission in order to receive an aid decision in a timely manner. Learn more about applying for UChicago’s financial aid.
Do students apply to specific academic departments or schools?
No; however, students are encouraged to indicate their academic interests in their application.
How can students let the admission staff know about their talents in the arts?Students may submit supporting materials for music, theater and dance, or visual arts and film. You may also submit an additional recommendation from anyone who knows you well (e.g., coach, music or foreign language teacher, member of your community).
Students may also submit a short creative writing sample or scientific research abstract. These items should be submitted digitally through the “Portfolio” section of the student’s UChicago Account. We will accept supplemental materials even after submitting an application Our deadlines for supplemental materials are: November 15th for Early Action and January 15th for Regular Decision.
How can students let the admission staff know about their interests in athletics?
Interested student athletes interested in one of our varsity Division III programs should contact our coaches for more information about varsity athletics UChicago.
How do students apply to UChicago?
Students should complete the Universal Application or Common Application and the University of Chicago Supplement. The Universal Application must be completed online at the Universal Application website, and the Common Application must be completed at the Common Application website. It contains basic information about the student’s background, academic profile, and extracurricular activities.
The University of Chicago Supplement (available on the Universal and Common Application websites) requires one extended essay from our list of five, and one short essay on on choosing to attend University of Chicago. An essay about favorite art or media is optional. See some of our past essay questions.
Is there an application fee?
The University of Chicago does not charge a college application fee for students applying for need-based financial aid. For students not applying for need-based financial aid, our application fee is $75, and can be submitted through the Common Application or Universal Application.
Which standardized tests are required for admission?
UChicago requires an ACT or SAT Reasoning score, and we use best results if students send multiple test scores to us. Official SAT Reasoning or ACT scores should be sent to the University of Chicago from the testing agency, even if scores appear on a transcript. UChicago’s SAT code is 1832 and ACT code is 1152.
We do not require any SAT Subject Tests. While we would of course prefer to receive scores before the appropriate deadline, for the Early Action deadline, we will accept November SAT scores and October ACT scores and for the Regular Decision deadline, we will accept January SAT scores and February ACT scores. If students choose to submit ACT scores, we do not require the optional ACT essay component.
Do you look at the writing section of the SAT?
The writing section of the SAT or the ACT is considered supplemental.
What materials should the school counselor or teachers send UChicago?
Secondary school counselors should complete the Secondary School Report and submit it along with an official transcript. We also require two recommendations from teachers who have taught the applicant in an academic subject.
All high school counselors and teachers have the option of submitting letters of recommendation and school forms online via the Universal Application or Common Application. Teachers and counselors may print out and submit these forms on paper even if you submit your application online.
Counselors should also submit a midyear report with grades or transcript for a student’s first semester or first trimester by February 1, 2012, or as soon as possible thereafter. The Universal and Common Applications provides a Midyear Grade Report form, or you may use your own school’s midyear report. Students are also welcome to make updates to their application by logging into their UChicago Account and clicking “Update Your Application.”
Can students postpone matriculation at UChicago?
Yes. Students interested in taking a "gap year" between acceptance and attendance are welcomed to postpone their matriculation at UChicago. If this might be an option, it is a good idea for students to let us know as soon as possible. Alerting our office to a possible gap year will not negatively affect an application. If an admitted student is interested in taking a gap year, please see the Gap Year section below and contact your regional counselor.
What is the wait list?
To be considered part of our waitlist, a student simply needs to accept a place on the waitlist through their UChicago Account. Our waitlist is not ranked, meaning that students have a place in a pool of students who have been waitlisted rather than a ranked position in a line.
We do not yet know if or when we will be able to extend offers of admission to students off the waitlist. Therefore, it is imperative that waitlisted students accept and secure a place at a school to which they have been accepted by May 1.
May I appeal my admission decision or ask to have the decision explained?
There is no appeal process and we cannot reconsider applications or offer individual explanations for our decisions.