Admission Decision Process and Timeline
Below you will find some helpful information about our admission decision process. If you have questions about your specific application please contact the Office of Admissions or your admissions counselor.
Applications submitted for the University of Cincinnati’s Uptown (main) Campus are reviewed holistically, considering every item provided in the application file. Applications are read by admission team members, who are trained to use application information—both academic and personal—to more fully understand who the applicant is, how likely they are to be academically successful in an Uptown campus program, and what attributes the student will bring to our campus community. Consequently, there is not a “minimum” GPA or ACT/SAT test score, just as there is not a guaranteed admission based on a student’s profile.
Items considered during application review:
- Official High School Transcript: Overall success as demonstrated by GPA, curriculum, grade trend. We want to see students who have been successful in a challenging, college prep curriculum—including taking advanced coursework (AP, IB, dual enrollment) if offered at your school.
- Extracurricular Activities: How do you spend your time outside of the classroom? Some students may participate in school organizations or sports; others may volunteer or work; and others may be a caregiver to a family member. One type is not more important than the other, we just want to learn more about you.
- Essay and Personal Statement: This is your opportunity to have a voice in the admission process. Be authentic and tell us something about yourself that we otherwise wouldn’t know.
- ACT/SAT Test Scores: UC is proud to offer test-optional admission to students applying for the fall 2021 and fall 2022 terms. However, a test score is still required for the following programs: the University Honors Program, the College of Nursing Direct-Admit BSN program, and the Early Childhood Education Program (offered through the College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services). We will always consider the highest test score(s) that you send to us.
- Common Application School Report or Recommendation Letter: Many students ask a teacher to submit a recommendation letter. Select someone who knows you and your academic talents and abilities. Either of these documents will fulfill the requirement, however we recommend students submit both.
- Auditions and Interviews: College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) are requires applicants to complete an audition or interview. The College of Nursing applicants may be invited to participate in an on-campus interview. Visit the College of Nursing webpage or CCM Handbook for all details.
- Portfolio: Certain programs within the College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning allow students to submit an optional portfolio as part of their admission review. Students who include Architecture, Communication Design, Fashion Design, Fine Arts, Industrial Design, or Interior Design among their program options will be invited to submit a portfolio for admission consideration if they think it would strengthen their application. Learn more about the guidelines for the DAAP Optional Portfolio. >>
Additional Application Review Factors
Cincinnati admits students directly into their major. While the holistic review process outlined above is used for every college, some colleges or majors may be more competitive than others. Your selected major may provide us with a lens through which to view your application. For example, strong math and science skills are necessary to be successful in our engineering program and we will look for evidence of those skills before we offer admission to an engineering program.
View our application information to see what is needed to complete your application file.
Early Action Decision Timeline
Regardless of major, Cincinnati reviews all applicants who have met the December 1 Early Action deadline prior to releasing admissions decisions. Early Action applicants can expect to learn their admission decision on Cincinnati Decision Day. For fall 2021 first-year students, this is February 5, 2021 at 5:00 PM EST.
Note the following exceptions:
- Applicants for the College-Conservatory of Music must audition and will learn of their admission decision no later than March.
- Students who apply directly to one of the regional campuses, UC Blue Ash College or UC Clermont College, will continue to receive admission decisions on a rolling basis beginning in the fall.
Rolling Decision Timeline
For students who complete an application after December 1, admission decisions will be released on a rolling basis after Cincinnati Decision Day on February 5, 2021.
Students can log into their applicant status page to view their decision.