California Institute of Technology (CalTech) Early Action Acceptance Rate

Of all the prestigious colleges and universities within the United States, few have contributed quite as much to the scientific community as the California Institute of Technology.

By turning towards the past, the brilliant minds at CalTech were able to provide fascinating new revelations about the inner workings of dinosaurs, calculating their metabolisms by looking into the structural makeup of their fossilized teeth and eggs.

From there, scientists at the California Institute of Technology looked to the future. Putting all their ambitions towards making the world a better place, these researchers calculated new methods of food production provide hope in the fight against world hunger.

At CalTech, researchers don’t just look to the cold facts of science in their quest for knowledge; they find inspiration in the vast, beautiful world of nature. 

While experimenting with different forms of robotic movement, these scientists drew models from the natural movements of the animal kingdom. 

While one scientist managed the impressive feat of creating a freely moving artificial jellyfish, yet another used his studies of dragonfly larvae to create a more affordable, longer-lasting valve in a prosthetic heart, providing hope for hundreds of needy families around the world.

With all these amazing discoveries, young high school students all across the nation find themselves asking the same question: “How can I take my part in the fascinating discoveries available at the California Institute of Technology?”

In this article, we will discuss the CalTech early action acceptance rate, as well as other tips and tricks that may help provide the vital edge to acceptance.

Read on to learn more about the California Institute of Technology’s early action acceptance rate!

California Institute of Technology Early Action Acceptance Rate

California Institute of Technology
Antony-22, Guggenheim Laboratory Caltech, CC BY-SA 4.0

The early action acceptance rate for CalTech is just under 5%

According to data from the California Institute of Technology, the difference between the early action acceptance rate and that of regular admissions is negligible, with both hovering just under five percent. 

In most popular universities – including some of the top universities in the nation – students hope to gain a slight edge in taking advantage of the early action process, but with such a small difference, they may find that advantages don’t do enough to outweigh the usual risks of early action at most schools: inability to compare financial aid offers, less time for research, increased stress in the middle of their senior year of high school.

However, the California Institute of Technology is currently in the process of alleviating some of these usual worries, reducing nearly all of the risks associated with the early action process.

Rather than using a typical early action route, CalTech has recently begun offering a “restrictive early action” option. 

In this application route, students who gain acceptance into this prestigious university no longer have any contractual obligations to attend. This allows prospective students the opportunity to “shop around” between universities, ensuring they can still access whatever financial aid options best suit their personal needs.

Prospective students should be aware that, like in most schools following this model, CalTech only offers the restrictive early action option to students who hope to declare this school as their very first choice. 

As such, applicants should not apply for early action or any related route to any other university. 

CalTech Early Action Decision Date

The CalTech early action decision date is in mid-December

Because students are not contractually obligated to accept their admission into CalTech, students accepted during this round of admissions have until May 1st to accept or decline their attendance.

No matter how nervous a student may feel about taking the leap towards CalTech, however, they are likely to find those nerves immediately soothed after taking just a short look at the list of impressive alumni to have graduated from this historic university.

Before going on to earn the Nobel Prize in physics, Richard Feynman was just another student walking the campus and studying at the expansive Sherman Fairchild Library

Today, he is best known for his work in formulating quantum mechanics, quantum electrodynamics, and the physics of supercooled liquid helium.

Where would the world of artificial intelligence be without the contributions of CalTech alumni John McArthy? 

In addition to helping found the discipline, he also co-authored the document that coined the phrase “artificial intelligence.”

After first quenching his thirst for knowledge in the classrooms of CalTech, alumni Adam D’Angelo took steps towards helping others easily gain answers to their own questions. 

In addition to working as the chief technology officer at Facebook, D’Angelo founded Quora, an internet site dedicated to linking people from all over the world as part search engine, part social media site.

Every day, graduates of the California Institute of Technology carry their ambitions into the world, affecting change from the inside out. 

CalTech Early Action Deadline

California Institute of Technology
Antony-22, Robinson Laboratory Caltech 2017a, CC BY-SA 4.0

The deadline to apply for CalTech’s early action option is November 1st.

On average, the California Institute of Technology only enrolls between 230 and 240 students per incoming class. 

With over 8,000 applications filed per year, this university stands as one of the most exclusive in the nation.  

Needless to say, they accept only the best and brightest.

The average incoming freshman student celebrated a high school GPA of 4.19, with many also serving among the top three of their prospective graduating classes.

Though test scores are not officially a requirement for application, they are a fantastic way to help stand out among the crowd. 

This being said, students should likely only volunteer this information if they know that their scores will stand up among the sea of other applicants. 

Overall, the average incoming student at this university scored a perfect 36 on their ACT score, in addition to having a 1550 SAT score.

CalTech doesn’t just use these brilliant students to pump out the most successful graduates; instead, it provides these students with the challenging educational experience they need to grow in their own intelligence and ambition. 

At the Resnick Institute, students have access to some of the world’s leading technology as they research ways to improve the sustainability of life on earth. 

From learning about how to clean and manage freshwater to experimenting with ways to mitigate the effects of climate change, these students do more than just study; they work alongside scientists from all over the world to make real, measurable change.

CalTech EA Deferral Rate

The deferral rate for CalTech early action candidates is incredibly competitive, with only one percent of waitlisted students eventually celebrating acceptance. 

The California Institute of Technology neglects to release exact statistics about how many students apply for early action, but their informative website reiterates that deferral is reserved for only the top students. 

Because the acceptance committee is so rigorous in every overview, they only offer deferment to students who, they are hopeful, may have new information to add by the time they update their information for the regular admissions round.

In 2019, 501 students who applied for early action received notices of deferment, with a vast majority of all applicants receiving letters of denial. 

From that point, just under 400 applicants accepted this deferment and underwent the– admittedly nerve-wracking process– of waiting until spring, when all other applicants receive word back about their acceptance status.

Though a letter of deferral can naturally be a bit disappointing, students should still take this news with hope. 

The California Institute of Technology openly reserves most of its acceptance space for students in the regular round of admissions, and because the competition is equally competitive between both application routes, students who receive a chance at deferment should consider this nothing more than a second chance. 

Should You Apply to CalTech for Early Action?

Whether or not to apply for early action to the California Insitute of Technology is highly personal and depends highly on the individual student.

CalTech is fully aware that early action is typically seen as a better chance of acceptance, and their informative admission website openly warns prospective applicants that this isn’t necessarily the case at their school. 

In fact, their description of this process plainly states: “Regular Decision is a perfectly acceptable and equal admissions process for the majority of applicants. We mean it.”

The only students who should take advantage of the early action process are those who know that they already have a top-level application ready to go at the end of their junior year of high school. 

The biggest advantage to early action at this campus lies in the options they offer in terms of financial aid.  

Students who gain acceptance through early action admissions can go into their winter break at the end of December with a full knowledge of how much financial aid this historic university is able to provide towards their future studies. 

With this knowledge in mind, students can go into the holiday season with a clear, stress-free mind and emerge into the next year equipped to make the wisest possible financial decisions for their future.