University of Washington – Acceptance Rate, GPA, and Requirements

It is hard to find an area where the University of Washington doesn’t excel. 

Ranked by Reuters as the #1 Innovative University in the World, #4 in National Public Universities by Times Higher Education, and #10 in Computer Science programs by U.S. News and World Report, UW holds plenty of clout among public universities at home and abroad. 

Computer science is of particular significance to UW because of its historical and geographical proximity to technology giants. 

The university has a solid connection to the Gates family (of Microsoft fame) and has been able to build and develop many programs from their generous giving. 

In addition to famous supporters, UW’s campuses are located in and around the Puget Sound Region, which is increasingly becoming Washington’s own Silicon Valley. 

On-campus, The Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering is one of the top computer science programs in the nation and has produced Rhodes Scholars, Gates Cambridge Scholars, and recipients of the Google Anita Borg Scholarships. 

In addition, undergraduates of UW have led the way in Computing Research Association’s Undergraduate Research Award competition.   

Students who aren’t interested in computer science will still find the influence of technology in the innovative learning environments UW provides. 

Earth science, biotechnology, and entrepreneurship are just a few of the areas that have seen innovative programs and research at UW. 

Students even have access to fully-funded summer internships where they can work with faculty developing start-ups. 

This entrepreneurial spirit that UW has fostered lends itself well to connecting students to businesses and start-ups in the local community. 

This emphasis on business and start-ups includes an essential emphasis on law. 

Students can access the Entrepreneurial Law Clinic within the UW law program where they are paired with pro bono lawyers and business advisors to help local businesses and the university navigate legal matters. In addition to serving the local community, UW also looks towards how it can contribute to the global community. 

One of the top producers of Peace Corps volunteers, UW takes its commitment to service and innovation across the globe. 

Among projects covering climate change and covid-19, the university has even contributed to research on illegal poaching. In recent news, UW’s Center for Environmental Forensic Science contributed to helping law enforcement track down ivory poachers. 

UW’s serious environment may seem intense, but there is plenty of fun for students to have. 

Whether students find their Huskey spirit when the PAC-12 Huskey football team starts the season or join the ASUW bike repair shop, students will enjoy a rich and engaging student on-campus life at the University of Washington. 

Below are the basics of how to apply to the University of Washington. Students who are seriously considering UW should follow up with this information through the UW admissions page.

University of Washington Acceptance Rate

University of Washington
Priyaranjan Pattnayak, University of Washington , CC BY-SA 4.0

University of Washington’s general acceptance rate is 60%, but students should know that UW admission won’t necessarily translate to admission to a particular major of interest. 

UW has three types of majors: open, minimum requirements, and capacity-constrained. 

Students who opt for an open major will be automatically enrolled. Minimum requirements majors will require a student to add some supplemental information, and capacity-constrained majors are highly competitive and selective. 

This is important to understand and research before submitting an application because students must report a first-choice major and a second-choice major on the application. 

Some majors, like computer engineering and engineering, have to be placed as a student’s first choice to be considered for the program. Students can learn more about this process on the major admissions page

Once a student has researched the degree they wish to enter into, they can begin the process of filling out the UW application found within the Coalition Application. 

The application will open on September 1 and be due on November 16th for Summer and Fall enrollment. First-year students are not able to enter in during Spring Semester. 

The application process for UW is heavily based on a student’s CADRs, essay, and short response. There are no SAT/ACT or letters of recommendation requirements. Students will also need to pay or waive the $80 application fee. More on CADRs below. 

For more information about the application requirements and process, students should visit the “How to Apply” UW page. 

University of Washington Out-of-State Acceptance Rate

The Out-of-State Acceptance Rate for UW is 50%, not too far off from the in-state. 

Students who have questions about what it means to be a resident or not should consult the university’s Residency information page

GPA for University of Washington

University of Washington
Richardmouser, Campus Scene in March 2021 at Drumheller Fountain, Seattle, CC BY-SA 4.0

The average GPA for entering students at the University of Washington is 3.8.

These core courses are called College Academic Distribution Requirements (CADRs) and are considered the important foundational courses students need to excel within a liberal arts curriculum. 

Students need to give themselves plenty of time to complete this portion of the application because it will serve as the main document UW will use to determine academic eligibility. 

As a result, students will not need to submit transcripts upfront as part of their admissions requirements because the CADRs reporting will show all academic work. 

For more information about how to translate past academic courses to CADRs, students should visit the UW CADRs information page

Other Requirements and Admission Tips 

As mentioned above, students who are looking to go into certain majors will need to check that program’s page to see if there are additional requirements. 

For example, students who are interested in American Ethnic Studies will not need to meet any additional requirements for admission; on the other hand, students who wish to pursue English will find it is a capacity-constrained major and will need to meet extra course requirements. 

UW knows that for students to enter into some of the more competitive majors, they need to have access to specialized courses during their high school education. 

Through the Running Start program, UW provides dual enrollment opportunities that students can participate in while still in high school. Courses that are completed through this count for college credit and are transferable to UW. 

One final option for students to consider during the admissions process is the Honors College. Being part of the Honors College allows students access to an academic community, specialized courses, networking, and research opportunities. 

Students will be prompted to select ‘yes’ or ‘no’ if they want to be considered for the Honors College during the general UW application. If they select yes, they will be sent a separate application that requires two additional 300-word essays. 

Essays for University of Washington

University of Washington School of Art + Art History + Design
Jeanette Mills, University of Washington Art Building, CC BY 4.0

There is one essay and one short-answer requirement for the UW application. These tasks provide the UW with a holistic picture of a student by combining academic history with personal narrative. 

The essay is a 650-word description of a student’s life and what shaped them into the person they are today. 

The short answer is a 300-word response to a question about diversity. UW is passionate about building a community that is inclusive and diverse and looks for answers that show how a student’s background will be part of their educational experience. 

UW has more details and tips for how to be successful on the essay and a short answer portion on their essay information page

Is the University of Washington Right for You?

Selecting a university is a daunting task that requires time, effort, and a lot of research. Thankfully, UW has a great information page that helps students consider whether UW is for them.

Identifying a university doesn’t have to be done alone, especially in this digital age where plenty of apps and programs will do the research for a prospective student. 

Students will find three such tools on the UW Preparing for College page. Each of these tools offers a different way for students to compare prices, identify areas of interest, and explore available scholarships and aid. 

It is highly recommended that students take the time to sign into one of these programs and start building a portfolio of different schools they are interested in. 

Quality education can only go so far if it isn’t backed by a supportive environment. Students looking into UW can rest assured that when they become a Husky, they will be supported in the classroom and out. 

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