Located in Orlando, Florida, the University of Central Florida enrolls around 60,000 students. Highly motivated students seeking a stimulating learning environment are a good fit for UCF. Exceptional grades, high test scores, good character and a compelling written essay are important admissions factors. "U.S. News & World Report" considers UCF a selective college based on an acceptance rate of 46 percent. The most popular majors are engineering, biomedical sciences, biology, computer science and psychology.
Admission requirements include four years of English, including three years of intensive writing classes. Applicants must also take three years of social studies classes, three years of natural science and two years of study in one foreign language. Going beyond the minimum requirements gives applicants a competitive edge because the University of Central Florida assesses the rigor of courses taken to determine intellectual capacity and passion for learning.
A strong high school record is very important to the admissions committee. Upon receipt of high school transcript, the University of Central Florida recalculates a student’s grade point average based on performance in English, natural science, social students, math and foreign language. More challenging classes such as honors English and advanced placement biology are given more weight in determining GPA. A high GPA is a strong advantage in the admission process. For instance, the middle 50 percent of the 2012 incoming class had a recalculated GPA of 3.6 to 4.1.
High Test Scores
The University of Central Florida requires freshmen applicants to take the American College Test (ACT) or the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). Students who are accepted to UCF typically do very well on the ACT and the SAT. For the 2013 freshmen class, the average ACT composite score was 27. Similarly, new entering freshmen excelled on the SAT, as demonstrated by an average SAT score of 1837 in critical reading, math and writing. In addition, 61 accepted students were National Merit scholars. Studying hard in high school is excellent preparation for college entrance examinations.
"The College Board" indicates that extracurricular activities, special skills, volunteer service, work experience and being a first-generation college student are other factors that influence admission decisions. Being a well-rounded student with leadership potential makes you an attractive candidate to a school like the University of Central Florida that seeks a talented student body. These qualities can make you stand out. An ability to be a team player as demonstrated by participation in sports or clubs is another attribute that can strengthen an admissions application.
Applicants are encouraged to submit an optional 500-word essay. The essay is an opportunity for students to share unique characteristics that make them an asset to the school. Some students write about how their family upbringing or cultural values shaped their identity and career aspirations. Other students discuss how they overcame obstacles to achieve success. An essay should be authentic with minimal editing from parents or teachers. The admissions committee appreciates insight into an applicant’s personality, values and aspirations.
- University of Central Florida: About UCF
- University of Central Florida: Admissions Criteria: Course Units
- University of Central Florida: Prospective Students: How Competitive is UCF?
- University of Central Florida: Admissions Requirements: Freshman Applicants: Fall 2013 Class Profile
- Big Future by the College Board: University of Central Florida: Applying: What's Important?
- University of Central Florida Admissions: FAQs: Application Process
Dr. Mary Dowd is a dean of students whose job includes student conduct, leading the behavioral consultation team, crisis response, retention and the working with the veterans resource center. She enjoys helping parents and students solve problems through advising, teaching and writing online articles that appear on many sites. Dr. Dowd also contributes to scholarly books and journal articles.