UC Berkeley Acceptance Rates [Updated 2020]

UC Berkeley Acceptance Rates [Updated 2020]

So… you’re thinking about applying to UC Berkeley. But with Berkeley’s notoriously competitive acceptance stats, what are your chances of being admitted? What SAT/ACT and GPA will you need? In this post, we’ll take a close look at UC Berkeley acceptance rates in 2019 and 2020, and discuss the scores it takes to become a Golden Bear.

Related Article: UC Admissions and Coronavirus

Table of Contents

UC Berkeley Admissions Stats

This is a snapshot of the statistics of Berkeley’s admitted freshman class for fall 2019.

Acceptance Rate:


SAT Range:

1340 – 1540

ACT Range:

30 – 35

GPA Range:

4.15 – 4.30

What Are The UC Berkeley Acceptance Stats?

UC Berkeley Acceptance Rates

What are the chances of getting into UC Berkeley?

UC Berkeley acceptance rates for prospective 2019 freshmen was 16.4%. In other words, for every 100 applicants, just 16 students were admitted — making UC Berkeley the second most competitive undergraduate campus in the UC system (after UCLA). 

With 80,000+ applicants vying for so few spots, applying to Cal may seem quite intimidating. But remember: UC Berkeley practices holistic admissions. A combination of strong stats, stellar UC essays and meaningful extracurriculars is what will truly distinguish you.

Berkeley Admissions Stats

Applicants 87,393
Admits 14,336
Overall Admit Rate 16.4%

Average ACT/SAT For UC Berkeley Admission

What ACT/SAT is required for UC Berkeley? 

While UC Berkeley acceptance rates are very high and it requires all applicants to submit scores from either the SAT with Essay or ACT with Writing, there is technically no minimum SAT/ACT score requirement. 

But what ACT/SAT score will you need to be competitive?

You’re more than just a number, of course. But, you need top SAT and ACT scores alongside a strong UC GPA at minimum to get into Berkeley. To give yourself the best shot, aim for the 75th percentile — that means at least a 1540 on the SAT or a 35 on the ACT.

Here’s a look at the test scores for admitted students in the 2018-2019 admissions cycle:

Berkeley SAT Score Range

Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
Evidence Based Reading & Writing 660 750
Mathematics 680 790
Essay 16 19


Berkeley ACT Score Range

Section 25th Percentile 75th Percentile
English Language Arts 28 32
Composite 30 35

Average GPA To Get Into UC Berkeley

How to get into UC Berkeley

What GPA do you need to get into Berkeley?

To be a Golden bear, you’re required to have at least a UC GPA of 3.0 (3.4 if you’re out-of-state). 

Not too bad right? 

Not so fast. Merely fulfilling the minimum admission requirements won’t suffice. Aim high. To be the most competitive, you should have mostly A’s and multiple AP or IB courses under your belt. 

Popular Majors In UC Berkeley

What majors are UC Berkeley known for? 

UC Berkeley offers over 150 undergraduate majors and minors. Some of the most popular majors include:

  • Computer Science
  • Electrical Engineering & Computer Science (EECS)
  • Economics
  • Business Administration
  • Data Science

UC Berkeley Tuition And Cost

UC Berkeley acceptance stats and Tuition

What is the cost to attend UC Berkeley?

Well, check it out: Tuition for Berkeley students during the 2019-2020 academic year was $14,254 for California residents and $44,008 for nonresidents. 

Especially if you’re out-of-state, Berkeley’s tuition is quite a hefty one. So, how much financial aid does UC Berkeley give?

You’re in luck: Berkeley is ranked as the nation’s 5th best value college by Forbes in 2019. In fact, more than 65 percent of Berkeley undergraduate students receive financial aid.

The table below shows the estimated student budget of 2019-2020 freshman:

Tuition and Fees $14,254 $14,254
Nonresident supplemental tuition $29,754
Student Health Insurance Plan** $3,286 $3,286
Room and board $17,220 $17,220
Food $1,644 $1,644
Books and supplies $870 $870
Personal $1,876 $1,876
Transportation $400 $400
TOTAL $39,550 $69,304

UC Berkeley Post Graduation Outcomes Class of 2019

So you got into Berkeley. But what happens after?

For the class of 2019, the vast majority were employed full-time straight out of UC Berkeley. Not only did these Bears secure jobs, they secured the bag as well: The overall average starting salary for UC Berkeley’s Class of 2019 was $75,000! 

Here’s what the starting salaries look like by college:

Class of 2019 First Destination

Employed Full-time 60.5%
Graduate/Professional School 18.7%
Other Endeavors 7%
Still Seeking 13.8%


Class of 2019 Average Starting Salary

College Starting Salary
Haas School of Business $82,273
College of Engineering  $100,577
College of Chemistry $66,576
College of Environmental Design $53,834
Rausser College of Natural Resources $55,995
College of Letters & Science $79,206

UC Berkeley is, no doubt, a launchpad for successful lives and careers. As a result, Cal is also extremely competitive. But don’t be discouraged, becoming a Golden Bear is far from impossible. You can do it! 

Related Article: UC GPA Calculator For UC Applicants

Have more questions about How to get into UC Berkeley, UC Berkeley acceptance rates and stats, and your admissions chances? Ask away in the comments below!