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University of Southern California(USC) Acceptance Rate in 2023

Getting into the University of Southern California(USC) is not that difficult. To get admitted to USC, prospective students must meet the admission requirements and get acquainted with the University of Southern California acceptance rate.

The University of Southern California (USC) is a highly-ranked private school in Los Angeles. As a result, it draws thousands of qualified applicants each year. 

If you’re applying here, you may wonder what the USC admissions requirements are and what you’ll need to stand out as an applicant.

Notwithstanding, as a top-ranked private research institution, the University of Southern California offers everything you are looking for: an interdisciplinary education informed by a global perspective, more academic opportunities than any other American university, a vibrant campus life, a location in the heart of a dynamic world center and the lifelong support of the Trojan Family.

Therefore, to increase your chances of getting admitted, this article will explain how the University of Southern California accepts in-state and out-of-state students and international students. Also, you will get vital information on the admission criteria and student life at USC.

Why Study At The USC?

Founded in 1880, USC is the oldest private research university in California. For the 2018–19 academic year, there were 20,000 students enrolled in four-year undergraduate programs.

USC also has 27,500 graduate and professional students in several programs, including business, law, engineering, social work, occupational therapy, pharmacy, and medicine. It is the largest private employer in Los Angeles and generates $8 billion in economic impact on Los Angeles and California.


The University of Southern California has two primary campuses located in the heart of Los Angeles.

  • University Park campus
  • Health Sciences campus

The 229-acre University Park campus, home to the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, the Graduate School, and most of USC’s professional schools, is adjacent to Exposition Park with its world-class museums and recreational facilities.

A few miles to the northeast is the 79-acre Health Sciences campus, home to the Keck School of Medicine of USC and the School of Pharmacy as well as three major teaching hospitals.

USC also conducts programs in locations throughout Southern California, from downtown Los Angeles to Orange County to Santa Catalina Island.n Sacramento, Calif., and Washington, D.C.

In a comprehensive 2021 ranking, The Wall Street Journal and Times Higher Education ranked USC 18th among over 1,000 public and private universities.

Among all California institutions — public and private — only USC, Caltech, and Stanford University ranked within the top 20 of the 150 universities surveyed in the western U.S., USC ranks No. 3.

Among the top 25 schools, USC ranked No. 2 in engagement and No. 5 in the environment, a measure of diversity and inclusion.

The University also earned the 22nd spot on the U.S. News and World Report Best College Rankings for 2019, tied with Georgetown University and UC Berkeley.

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What Is The University of Southern California Acceptance Rate and Why So Low?

Each year over 50,000 of the most talented high school seniors in the country and from all over the world apply to USC.

USC received 66,000 freshman applications for its 2019 admission cycle, bringing the USC acceptance rate in 2023 to 12% — the lowest in history.

Mary Basilious, a senior at Village Christian Schools in Sun Valley, who was recently admitted, said she felt intimidated by the University’s low admission rate and was excited about this year’s record rates.

“USC seems to be a very diverse school,” Basilious said. “It’s much more diverse than many elite universities, so I’d feel a lot more comfortable going there.”

Is USC Acceptance Rate So Low?

According to USC News, USC acceptance rate has steadily declined

USC admission rate has steadily declined since it was 17.8% in 2014. In 2015, the rate dropped to 17.5 percent and 16.5 percent in 2016.

This means that for every 100 students who applied, 11 students were admitted, thus making USC’s admissions process highly competitive.

Admissions Statistics
Number of Applicants66,198
Percent Admitted11.4%
Percent Admitted Who Enrolled (Yield)42%

What is USC Transfer Acceptance Rate?

Transferring to colleges can be quite a time-consuming and overwhelming task. So, we have taken the time to explain USC transfer rates to you. This will help in transitioning successfully with little friction.

So, here is the documents for consideration if you want to transfer to USC.

Admission ItemRequired?
High School TranscriptRequired of All
College TranscriptRequired of All
Essay or Personal StatementRequired of All
InterviewNot Required
Standardized Test ScoresRequired of Some
Statement of Good Standing from Prior InstitutionNot Required

However, USC does not report a specific number of credits required for transfer.

USC Acceptance Rate 2023 for First Year (freshman)

The USC 2023 acceptance rate is 12% on average. It is the same for first-year students. By implication, only 12 out of 100 applicants will have time to study at USC in 2023.

It is pertinent to note that USC does not offer early action or early decision admissions. All applications are evaluated equally.

USC Admission Requirements For In-State Students

As a high school graduate in the U.S, if you want to get into USC, the first thing you look out for is the acceptance rate. This shows how serious their admission requirement is.

If you’re a junior or a senior, your GPA is hard to change in time for college applications. If your GPA exceeds the school average of 3.76, you’ll need a higher SAT or ACT score to compensate. The average SAT score composite at USC is 1440 on the 1600 SAT scale. So, this makes USC strongly competitive.

How Many People Applied to USC?

USC receives over 70, 000 applications each year. According to its official website, it received 71, 031 applications.

With an acceptance rate of 12.5%, only 8,884 students were accepted. And, 3, 336 students matriculated in the 2023/2024 academic calendar.

23% of those admitted are first-generation, college students. USC acceptance rate out of state is Sixty percent.

This means 60% of the 8,884 students admitted were from out of state, and all 50 states,

When is USC Decision Date 2023?

First year applicants were emailed on 25th March, 2023. For the 2023/2024 academic session, the following are important USC decision dates.

On December 1st, 2023, they will consider first-year applicants for USC Merit Scholarships. To be eligible for this consideration, you must complete your application before Dec 1st.

It is also the final first-year deadline for the following programs:

  • All Cinematic Arts and Music programs
  • The Dance program
  • All Dramatic Arts BFA programs
  • The Iovine and Young Academy
  • World Bachelor in Business (WBB) program

January 15 2023 is the final first-year application deadline for all other programs. Applicants who show interest in FAFSA and CSS Profile application will do that by February 11th 2023.

For transfer students, USC decision dates are slightly different. February 15 is the transfer deadline for all other programs except those listed above.

FAFSA and CSS Profile will be due by March 2nd for transfer students.

USC Admission Requirements For International Students

With international students from 135 countries and regions, the University of Southern California mirrors the rich diversity of the global community.

Students already residing in the United States and holding other non-immigrant visas (for instance, an E2, H2, or L2) are also considered international students.

General admission requirements for international students:

  • Completed application form
  • All academic transcripts from high school/ senior secondary levels
  • Completed high school
  • English Language Requirements- TOEFL/ IELTS/ PTE Academic scores
  • Self-reported grades form
  • Submit any additional documents as requested by the USC Office of Admission.

Admission Requirements

International students interested in applying to the University of South California should follow the admission process below:

  • Complete the admission application and also submit the required documents.
  • Apply for a study permit and entry visa once you receive an acceptance letter from the university.
  • Students can obtain applications for these documents from a U.S embassy or consulate before departing.
  • In addition, international students can also apply for private loans with a qualified co-signer who is a U.S. citizen while facing unexpected challenges during their stay in the U.S.

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How Is Student Life At The University of Southern California?

At the University of Southern California, exceptional students become extraordinary people by developing their minds, body, and spirit. Typically, there are various interesting things about studying at USC.

For instance, USC offers some daycare for students with young families. Programs like this are sometimes in very high demand, so be sure to inquire as soon as you can.

Generally, life at USC is vivacious because the University is situated in Los Angeles; a city that never sleeps. Many different social, cultural, recreational, and wellness initiatives exist.

Even in athletics, USC is not left behind. It has a total of 678 student-athletes, 322 men and 356 women who compete in intercollegiate athletics.

In addition, each campus has a team dedicated to providing the best support, opportunities, and resources for students to reach their full potential. 


FAQs On The University of Southern California Acceptance Rate

What is the USC’s Acceptance Rate?

The University of Southern California’s acceptance rate is currently 12%.

Is it difficult to get into the University of Southern California?

An acceptance rate of 12% shows how competitive their admission rates can be.
So, it’s important to have a very high admission score.

What is the GPA requirement for USC?

For admission at USC, your GPA should be 3.78 and above.

Is the University of Southern California a good school?

Yes, USC is a good school. In fact, based on several international and local rankings, we can say that the USC is the best university in the U.S. It is also one of the most sought-after universities in the world.

Is SAT required for admission at USC?

In addition to having achieved a high-grade point average throughout high school, applicants must present good scores in SAT (Reasoning) or ACT examinations.

What is a good SAT score for the USC?

The University of Southern California’s average SAT score is 1390.


The University of Southern California is ranked #22 in Best National Universities, according to U.S. News. This has made admission into the University of Southern California a competitive one.

However, when admitted, students get to enjoy an interesting campus and student life.

I hope the information above helps you decide to study at the University of Southern California.

Good Luck And Success!!!



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Peace Akujuobi is a Web Content Developer and Digital Product Tester at Silicon Africa Technologies. She holds a degree in Mass Communication from a reputable institution.

Peace is an expert SEO writer with years of experience offering tips on wealth creation, jobs, and education. Also, she is passionate about helping people get access to online money-making opportunities.

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