Stanford University Acceptance Rate SAT/ACT, GPA

Attending Stanford university is the dream of many students globally, you inclusive! Yes, we know that! However, there is stiff competition as you will compete with the best students in the world. This makes it necessary for you to know about Stanford University’s acceptance rate and its requirements to be a step ahead of other competing students.

As a result, this article intends to answer all the questions you can possibly think of. It is our intention to give you a smooth sail into Stanford University. This article will cover a variety of issues you can face and the best options available.

According to Stanford’s University website, the school was ‘founded to promote the public welfare by exercising an influence on behalf of humanity and civilization’. A school with such a motive is worth attending.

So far, Standford University is made up of 7 schools and 18 interdisciplinary institutes with more than 16,000 students, 2,100 faculty, and 1,800 postdoctoral scholars. This shows that Stanford’s acceptance rate is low. Conscious efforts have to be made to get enrolled in the prestigious University.

Why Study at Stanford University?

Firstly, Stanford is one of the best universities in the USA. It has been consistent in its ranking as a top research university in the USA. Actually, ranks it as the second-best university in America. Other platforms say it is number 1.

Located on the west coast of the United States, Stanford has been keen on developing individuals who are not just academic giants but are confident in taking up leadership positions in their various endeavors.

Stanford University has an estimated budget of about $1.35billion dollars for carrying out different research projects. They also provide research facilities. Around 300 research faculties are present in the university to help students through their research process.

Apparently, the diverse facilities at the disposal of students have made the university top-ranking. Imagine a-300 research facilities for the use of only 800 students. That is a 3:1 student-facility ratio. Most schools in the world cannot compete with this.

Now, what is interesting is their library. With over 9.3 million printed texts and around 4 million e-books, they also have audio-visual materials. Reading just became more fun.

As of January 2021, there has been a collaboration with 83 Nobel laureates, 27 Turning Award laureates, and 8 field medalists.

Stanford ranks high as the most entrepreneurial university with the most successful startup funding for students. If you are innovative and wish to attract the attention of investors, Stanford is your best bet. Despite Stanford’s acceptance rate, you should really make great efforts to earn a certificate or two from the University.

What SAT, ACT, and GPA do they Accept?

To get started, let’s talk about what SAT, ACT, and GPA stand for, and how the exam is graded before acknowledging the one Stanford accepts.

What is SAT, ACT, and GPA?

SAT stands for Scholastic Assessment Test. It is a standardized test taken in the USA for all students seeking admission into undergraduate schools.

The exam tests students in the areas of Writing, Critical Reading, and Mathematics. The score is on a scale of 200-800.

Annually, according to research, over 2.2 million high school graduates took the exam for the class of 2019.

ACT is an acronym for American College Testing. The ACT test covers English, Mathematics, Reading, and Science reasoning for undergraduate admissions. It has a scoreline of 1-36.

GPA is an abbreviation of Grade Point Average. In fact, it is a number that shows the average score you get for your courses. The number is between 1 to 5.

Between SAT and ACT which does Stanford Prefer?

It is obvious that Stanford accepts both SAT and ACT. They do not have a preference for the tests.

The choice of the test to be taken should be determined by the candidate. He should write the one that best suits his abilities.

Consequently, 69% of students submitted their SAT scores to Stanford. 55% of applicants sent their ACT scores while applying.

What SAT Score is appropriate?

The middle 50% of admitted applicants have SAT scores between 1420 and 1570. Invariably, 50% submitted scores between 1420 and 1570.

But, the average SAT score acceptable by Stanford is 1480. Any student who scores below this average will most likely not be accepted. This average acceptance rate used at Stanford is gotten from the average score gotten by all students who have been admitted.

Average SAT scores at Stanford by section:

MathReading and WritingTotal

Which ACT score is required?

Statistically, the middle 50% of admitted applicants have ACT scores between 32, and 35. 55% of students submit ACT scores when applying.

For you to feel safe when applying to Stanford, you need an ACT score of 33. This score is derived from the average of admitted students.

Here’s a breakdown of the average ACT scores at Stanford by the English and Math sections:


GPA Score Eligible

GDP’s of some schools are graded to either 4 or 5. An unofficial GPA for Stanford is 4

What are Stanford’s Admission plans?

This often underrated university offers two admission decision plans for first-year applicants:

Restrictive Early Action: This plan is appropriate for students who do not have high grades. Furthermore, they do not have adequate funds to foot the fees. If they have been offered admission, they can apply for financial aid before the payment deadline and be given one.

However, applying to this means Stanford is your first university choice, and you can apply to another college only in their regular plans.

Regular Decision: This is the traditional admission plan, and the majority of students are admitted during this period. If you have high grades and are taking any of the standardized tests we discussed above, then, you should consider the regular decision plan.

Stanford Transfer Admission

To apply for transfer admission at Stanford, you will require: an application, a non-refundable fee of $90 or you request for a fee waiver, an ACT/SAT test score(an essay is not required), an official transcript, a letter of recommendation, college report( this is a form completed by your college that provides information about you). You may also submit an Art portfolio to showcase any extra talent in arts.

I hope we know that transfer admission is for students who have completed high school and have covered all the courses for a college degree in a bachelor’s degree program.

Other Selection Requirements

Stanford ACT Essay Policy

Previously, in the post, we were all told that the essay test in ACT is optional. Here is the truth. Stanford requires any candidate who submits an ACT test score to submit an ACT essay alongside. They score it by considering the highest section from each subject.

Stanford ACT Essay Policy

In the same vein, an acceptance criterion at Stanford requires that applicants will submit an SAT essay along with the rest of the exam. Since the essay is optional, any student considering Stanford should take note.

Asides from the essays, there are other parts of the admission process. During some test your academic prowess, others test your interpersonal skills. Hence, we can say that Stanford is not looking for academically excellent students alone. They wish to understand you, how you would grow, contribute at Stanford, and how Stanford will be changed by you.

Here is a comprehensive list of what Stanford looks for in a student;

  • Intellectual Vitality: Stanford looks for highly curious students who are committed, dedicated, and energetic.
  • Extracurricular Activities: They seek students who participate in extracurricular activities. To them, it shows that the student is responsible. Sometimes, students who are exceptional in athletics is preferred.
  • Context: They take into account circumstances, backgrounds, etc.
  • Academic Excellence: This is the primary requirement. Stanford is for prepared individuals who are ready to take the world by storm. We all admit to their policy that there is no minimum GPA, but we also know that students with poor results will not be considered. The main document they check is your school transcript.

What is the Acceptance Rate for Stanford University?

Before we fully go into the general acceptance rate of Stanford, let us consider the chance of acceptance using test scores.

According to Research, Stanford’s acceptance rate using SAT scores toggles between 1420 even to as low as  1340 sometimes. The exam is rated on an a-1600 scale.

Because of this, an estimated chart was set up to rate students according to their scores. Literarily, this chart can check your score to see if you have a chance of admission.

It is important for us to know that this chart is not absolute. It was formulated to give the candidate a perimeter to check his/her chances of getting admitted.

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by SAT Score

1570 and AboveGood>7%
1495 to 1570Avg +4%-7%
1420 to 1495Avg –2%-4%
1345 to 1420Reach1%-2%
Less than 1345Low<1%

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by ACT Score

35 and AboveGood>8%
33 to 35Avg +4%-8%
32 to 33Avg –3%-4%
31 to 32Reach2%-3%
Less than 31Low<2%

From the chart above, we can see that students with low scores are most likely not to get admission. So, to be among the selected few, you need good grades because the Stanford acceptance rate is really low.

In the table, anyone who gets a score below 32 is advised to retry because the admission chance is less than 5%.

Calculate My Chances

Estimated GPA Requirements & Average GPA

A high school student is expected to have an average GPA of 4.18. Well, this depends on the grading system of the school. This is for those that grade to 4.

Typically, the grade should be an A. And only A students are accepted at Stanford.

3.50 to 3.754%Reach
3.25 to 3.501%Reach
3.00 to 3.25N/A%Low
2.75 to 3.00N/A%Low
2.50 to 2.75N/A%Low
2.25 to 2.50N/A%Low
2.00 to 2.25N/A%Low

So, how hard is it to get into Stanford? The school is ranked in California as number 1, with a low acceptance rate of 4%. Simply put, out of 47,452 students who sent an application, only 2,071 got in.

This shows that Stanford is extremely competitive, and the chance of being accepted is very low, even for those with high grades. That is to say; you must follow the instructions in this article to increase your chances.

You can also check outStanford University Rankings and its Tuition Fees with Admission Requirements

Is There Any Financial Aid at Stanford?

One of the things I like about Stanford is that they give financial aid to students. However, the aid is for only full-time students. If you were planning a part-time program then this aid is not for you.

Consequently, this may change as the management may decides to extend this hand of fellowship to the part-time students who need it.

Ordinarily, schools do not consider a student’s background before granting admission, but we have a magical school that does. By this, I mean if they can give preference to some underprivileged nations, then, it is just wise to assume they can as well do this.

Furthermore, they also don’t give needed aid to students from the USA and permanent residents. Only international students receive it. Here is a very important reason to apply as a non-resident.

In 2015, the school waived tuition fees, and room and board fees for families that have incomes less than $65,000. Families with income less than $125,000 are not expected to pay fees, and those whose own is $150,000 have it reduced. 17% of the students receive Pell Grants, a common measure of low-income students at a college. Now, 67% of the students receive financial grants that are up to $16,562.

Although Stanford is a private university, It enrolls 7,064 undergraduate students. The Admission rate is 5%. Many students major in Computer Science, Biology, and Engineering. The school graduates 94% of students. From our research, Stanford alumni usually earn a salary starting from $70,400.

Admission Requirements

What Really Matters When Applying

  • School GPA Recommended
  • High School Rank Neither required nor recommended
  • School Transcript Required
  • College Prep Courses Recommended
  • SAT/ACT Required
  • Recommendations Required

In a poll carried out on 27 students who applied to Stanford, 93% of students said the admissions process made them feel like the school cared about them as an applicant. 96% of students feel the admission process evaluated them individually as real people, not just a set of numbers.

Graduate School

While most people think Stanford is for only undergraduates, it really isn’t. There is a very good graduate school that is listed among the best in the USA.

Meanwhile, if you are looking for a good graduate school for your master’s and Ph.D. programs, consider Stanford.

Interestingly, Stanford is a good bait for very busy people. You can choose to be a part-time student. Isn’t that interesting?

Over the years, there has been a record of 10,470 students that have attended Graduate school. Part-time students are up to 1,345. Research assistants are 2,308, and Teaching assistants are 1,114 in number.

Students from across the globe have attended. This goes on to show that they have kept to their school’s policy of accepting students only based on their abilities. They have had students in this percentage: International (Non-Citizen) 33.8%, White 33.3%, Asian 13.7%, Unknown 7%, Hispanic 6.2%, Multiracial 3.9%, African American 2%, Native American 0.1%, Pacific Islander 0.1%.

A scholarship of up to $500 is also given to graduate students to help low-income earners.

Stanford has seven graduate schools, namely:

  • School of Earth, Energy, and Environmental Sciences
  • Graduate School of Business
  • Stanford Graduate School of Education
  • Stanford Law School
  • School of Engineering
  • Department of Humanities and Sciences
  • Stanford University School of Medicine

The Graduate school of Business is the most popular, having over 501 students.

To know about the courses offered in the various schools, read: Study in Stanford University: Admission Requirements, Courses Offered Tuition Fee, Ranking

Stanford University Faculty Admission Rate

Some schools have concrete data on their admission rates. They are listed below.

Stanford University School of Medicine: Any applicant to this school must have already obtained a bachelor’s Degree from an accredited university. The main requirement is an MCAT(Medical College Admission Test) of 519 at an average. The oldest MCAT should be 4 years prior to admission. Its acceptance rate is 2.5% receiving over 7000 applications per year.

Tuition costs $58,197 annually. The application fee is $95.

For the GPA, the class admitted in 2018 had a median GPA of 3.18.

Graduate School of Business: In 2016, the admission rate was 6.1%. Undergraduates paid a tuition of $57,300. Actually, this amount comprises of $2,184 in books and supplies, $1,710 in instructional materials, $3,600 for medical insurance, $963 for transportation.

Its admission rate is 6%. As a result, it has ranked as the lowest acceptance rate for a business school in the world.

Stanford University Tuition Fee/Cost to Attend

Fees at Stanford always consist of tuition, room and board, books and supplies, and other fees.

According to Usnews, the statistics for 2021-2022 Stanford admission tuition is as follows:

Tuition and Fees$53,529
Room and Board$16,433
Total Enrollment$17,381

There are also amazing scholarship opportunities to study at Stanford university.

Here are various scholarships available at Stanford for International students: Stanford University Scholarships Opportunities for International Students

Stanford Acceptance Rate FAQs

The minimum GPA required is 4. As we said earlier, there is no official number from Stanford.

The university is very selective and takes only ‘A’ students.

The chances are high if you meet all the requirements listed above like having a high SAT/ACT score or GPA amongst others.

Actually, Stanford’s acceptance rate is 4%.

The chances of getting admission as a non-US resident are very high. Just like every other student. It may even interest you to know that as a non-US student, there are many benefits you can enjoy if admitted like financial aid. Besides, they can give you a preference because of your nationality.

Well, I will say Stanford is for the poor. In 2015, the school waived tuition fees, room and board fees for families that have incomes less than $65,000. Families with income less than $125,000 are not expected to pay fees and those their own is $150,000 have it reduced.

The acceptance rate for Stanford’s Medical school is 2.5%.
Consequently, an applicant will require an MCAT score of 519 and above. If using a GPA, it should be 3.18 on the average.


Stanford University ranks high as the most entrepreneurial university with the most successful startup funding for students. Thus, they are not only interested in your education but your mental growth and well-being. While most schools just write it in their vision, Stanford actually does it.

No wonder their acceptance rate is low.

Getting admitted to this prestigious university requires both talent and intellect.

Your successfully gaining admission into Stanford will be a lot easier when you follow the guidelines in this article. It may require caution and conscious efforts to sit down and read. Very vital information was hidden between lines and you won’t know them if you don’t read.

In conclusion, the efforts are yours to put in; make hay while the sun shines.


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