First-Year Student Admission Requirements


Welcome! We are excited that you would like to begin your college career on the University of Cincinnati's main campus. Please reference the following information to determine how you can apply for admission and begin your time as a Bearcat! 


A complete application includes:

  • The Common Application, including writing components
  • $50 application fee or fee waiver
  • At least one letter of recommendation (OPTIONAL)
  • Test scores sent directly from the testing agency
  • High School Transcripts

Once a student submits their completed application (which includes all of the materials above), the review process will begin. 



Admission to the University of Cincinnati is selective. Freshman applications receive a comprehensive review in which both academic and non-academic factors are considered in determining admissibility to our academic programs.

Academic factors in the review process include (but are not necessarily limited to):

  1. Successful completion and overall strength in the college preparatory curriculum.

    Minimum requirements:
  2. 4 units of English
    4 units of math* 
    3 units of science
    3 units of social studies 
    5 units of electives**

    *Mathematics units must include 1 unit of algebra II or the equivalent of algebra II.

    **Electives can include any combination of foreign language, fine arts, business, career-technical education, family and consumer sciences, technology, agricultural education or additional core courses not otherwise required. 

    Preference may be given for completion of foreign language (2 units of the same language) or additional core courses (English, math, science, social studies) not otherwise required for graduation. 

    Note: 1 unit is defined as the equivalent to one full year of course instruction.

  3. Cumulative grade point average (GPA) of all course work completed at the time of review. Core subject grades and grade trends will also be taken into consideration.
  4. Performance on the ACT or SAT (if applicable, see testing options for international freshman applications)

                  Note: The writing portion of the standardized tests is NOT

                  required for admission consideration.

Non-academic factors considered during application review may include (in alpha order):

  • Audition or Interview (if applicable)
  • Class rank (if applicable)
  • Demonstrated commitment to service and/or volunteer activities
  • Employment while in school
  • Experiential learning (research, study abroad, service learning, etc.)
  • Extra-curricular activities (such as clubs, sports, the arts, community organizations)
  • Leadership roles
  • Letter(s) of recommendation (OPTIONAL)
  • Personal background and experiences
  • Rigor of coursework (Honors, AP, post-secondary, dual-enrollment)
  • Special abilities, talents, and other recognized achievements
  • Strength of high school
  • Writing ability, as demonstrated in the essay and personal statement