UCLA oos applicant.... how in the world are the GPAs so high?!?

Based on UCLA’s freshman profile from Fall 2019, the middle 50 percent of fully (uncapped) weighted GPA for out of state accepted applicants was 4.46-4.86. (http://www.admission.ucla.edu/Prospect/Adm_fr/Frosh_Prof19.htm)

Quite frankly I am unsure of how one achieves such a high gpa. These GPA values are calculated with the UC gpa, which does not weight honors courses for out of state applicants. In addition, only 10th and 11th grade courses are used to calculate the GPA.

So, assuming someone took 6 academic courses sophomore and junior year and each year took 5 APs for a total of 10 APs, their weighted UC gpa would still only be 4.83, which over 25% of accepted out of state applicants were accepted with a higher GPA. That is completely ridiculous and impossible at the vast, vast majority of high schools to have taken so many AP courses and it leads me to believe the information on the website is incorrect.

Because currently my GPA is a 4.85 weighted in my school as I am in all honors and AP courses, but using the UC GPA calculation which does not weight honors courses for oos applicants, my GPA could only possibly reach a maximum of around 4.3 if I pursued the maximum possible AP courses I could take next year, which is below the 25th percentile for GPA in admissions.

Am I missing something here? Are out of state applicants truly that competitive and somehow manage to fit 10-11 APs in their schedule sophomore and junior year? Or are the oos GPA calculated with weight to their honors courses, despite what UC might say about OOS applicants not receiving weight in their school-designated honors courses? I feel like the latter is more likely, considering it is highly unlikely that many kids were able to fit THAT many APs into their schedule especially considering most schools do not even offer 10-11 AP courses, let alone within the span of two years! In addition, the average weighted GPA for oos applicants is considerably higher than in-state applicants who have the benefit of honors weight for calculating UC gpa, so it would seem unbalanced to me that the oos applicants are so much more competitive and high-end than the instate kids.

I took the SAT freshman year and scored a 1410, so I assume my SAT scores will be up to par with competition come junior year, and I do have meaningful ECs that show my dedication to my passion (music), but I fear my GPA will just not be up to par if these reportings from the website are true. Heck, I don’t even think Ivy League students took that many APs to allow for such a high UC gpa from sophomore to junior year!

Some schools give 6 for honors/AP classes which I think is ridiculous. Not sure how common that is. Regardless, for high achievers on 5 scale, 4.7 is not uncommon.

At my son’s school, kids are allowed to take AP classes starting in Freshman year, plus the high achievers take extra AP classes online (that are not offered at school) during the school year and/or the summer so it’s not uncommon to see kids graduating from some high schools with 20+ AP classes.

UC’s use only 10-11th grades for their GPA calculation and will only give the extra Honors points for AP/IB or DE courses taken 10-11th grades so it does not matter how a HS weights their classes or if these courses are taken in 9th grade.

There are more than twice as many in-state applicants than OOS applicants so OOS applicants are a self selecting group especially when the UC’s give little to no financial aid. Majority of OOS applicants will not apply to a top school like UCLA/UCB unless they are able to afford the costs and in general be high achieving academically so the OOS GPA’s will be consistently higher.

It is not unheard of for Sophomore/Juniors to take 5-6 AP/IB classes both years along with DE courses (UC transferable) and based on the unweighted UC GPA posted on the Freshman profile, most pretty much have all A’s in these classes and a rare B or 2. OOS applicant admits are also capped at around 20% so UCLA can pick and choose the highest achieving student out of all the applicants that have applied. There are always exceptions to any scenario.

@tropesmuse . . . I’m going to take a different approach than the others.

I believe where you’re going wrong is in your assumption that UCLA doesn’t count honors courses for fully weighted gpa for out-of-state (“oos”) students, at least in the first part of your post. It’s evident that the University does, because down below the applied/accepted/enrolled stats-matrices, UCLA does blend all domestic CA and oos students together in presenting the number of honors courses in a tiered format for both AP and non-AP taken by this combined subset. So in other words, for UC gpa calculation, there are no honors (non-AP) plus-ones for oos students, but for fully weighted, they are presented as plus-ones for oos residents.

Additionally, UC gpa doesn’t really have a lot of importance for UCLA because the University looks more at unweighted and fully weighted GPAs with greater relevance. The link you provided shows this. The capped UC average could have more importance to some of the other campuses, where minimum standards will at times come into play. Also, the UC system website does present all the campuses’ incoming-frosh grades in the UC-gpa format to keep with uniformity. (And foreign students don’t have a lot to show forth in weighted grades at their internationally-based schools which means the University weighs SAT/ACT a lot more for them in the admissions process.)

Regarding your third paragraph,

A slight correction: UC gpa allows only two plus-ones per the four semesters. So if one takes a standard five a-g course-schedule per these four terms, that would show forth as a 4.40 gpa which is the max possible, assuming here that all grades were A’s as you did in your example. After that there are not diminishing returns but negative ones, because If one takes six courses, the max would be a 4.33 gpa; and if seven – there are some who actually do this – these students’ gpa would be a 4.26 max. The student in your example would show forth with a 4.33 UC gpa, for both a CA and oos student.

With respect to fully weighted gpa, they could have been like you in taking all honors (including APs) during these two years, because there will be some that do have 5.0 gpas, though small in quantity.

Per the prior, your fully weighted gpa will manifest as a 4.85 for UCLA. However, as excellent as your unweighted 3.85 gpa is, I’d be keep an eye on maintaining it also, but it could actually be higher because UC counts an A-minus grade as a 4.0 (as well as both B-pluses and B-minuses as a 3.0 – as pluses and minuses supposedly balance out).

Just as evidence of the importance of unweighted gpa to UCLA, the CDS information has added a new tiered-grade reporting in 2019 by adding the percentage of those who graduated high school with 4.0 gpas. UCLA reported 47.7% who had 4.0s (with 98.7% of the freshmen who reported grades), along with a 3.90 average for all who enrolled. Additionally, a 3.94 gpa descended down to the 39th percentile per your link. However, since you’re competing against your fellow oos students to be admitted, for this cohort – instead of the enrolled, there was a 3.93 gpa at the 25th percentile. So be sure to be watchful over your unweighted gpa also.

I think you answered your own question, except that you meant, “I feel like the [former] is more likely….”

You’re doing extremely well, and if you continue on, you’ll undoubtedly be an excellent candidate for UCLA. All the best.

It’s nit uncommon for high achieving California students from top school districts to take a total of 10+ AP classes in sophomore and junior year. And still be rejected by top UCs. That’s why many students are so stressed out. A sad reality…

@tropesmuse . . . let me re-quote your fourth paragraph:

I assumed that you’ve been in all honors and APs all throughout your soph and junior years and that you’re a junior now – therefore my conjecture that your unweighted was a 3.85; but the part in bold placed some doubt in my mind because you obviously know that senior-year grades are not a part of the application process.

However, senior-year coursework is very important too, along with the resultant grades in these two terms because you want to have as many APs as possible along with taking their tests to achieve as much college credit as possible, so it’s essential to keep your foot on the gas in your last year.

The California students, as 2015vintagemars alluded, are highly accomplished especially at UCLA and UCB. One of the reasons why oos students have higher stats (a lot higher for test scores) is because of the blending of 1st-gen and multi-generational college students in the CA cohort. Over half – perhaps two-thirds to three-quarters, which includes a decent portion of the 1st gens – of the forty-four hundred CA students have comparable stats with the oos cohort.

Here are some stats with respect to UCLA, UCB, and UCSD with regard to UC gpa’s two highest tiers for the class entering in 2019:

2019 Cohort…UCLA…%…UCB…%…UCSD…%
4.20 gpa and >…3,810…67.7%…3,538…57.9%…2,071…35.9%
3.80 - 4.19…1,557…27.7%…2,332…38.2%…3,071…53.3%
Re-totaled Students…5,631…6,112…5,764…


– The re-totaled students are the enrolled cohorts less those who have unknown grades, or more likely non-reported UC gpa because they’re Internationals: At UCLA, 289 students; at UCB, 342; UCSD, 305.

– UCB tends to consider quality of high school more than UCLA, so it tends to dip more into its applicant pool at top-tier schools, both public and private. UCB will often take 30-40 students from certain public high schools, e.g. Mission San Jose in Fremont (excellent hs, top tier tech students), 45 students. UCLA will take predominantly a max of 20 students.

– UCSD students don’t quite have the stats as the other two, but they’re extremely serious students, along the University having excellent programs.

If you’re out of state, it’s probably best to NOT go to UCLA. The tuition mixed with the atrocious cost of living make it one of the most expensive universities in the country. For a bachelors degree, you can find the exact same value for a small fraction of the price.

@coolguy40’s statement rings of considerable truth, @tropesmuse : the only way you should consider UCLA, is, if say, your parents can put the periodic charges on an Amex card and pay it off at the end of the cycle without much thought.

But there aren’t many colleges like UCLA, UCSB, UCSD, UCI, UCSC with respect to locale, weather, beaches, and general California lifestyle, and none of them is in any way cookie-cutter; they’re all unique. If you want to explore whether you want to settle in the state post-graduation, what better way to do so than attending college in the state.

All the best!

forget the GPA calc, the first question you need to ask yourself is ‘Why UCLA’ (or any UC for that matter)? They are really expensive for OOS students ($65k/yr).

If you want to move to CA, then why not look to a private school, such as USC ($77k)? For a few more dollars, a private offers much better value, IMO. More over, with your testing ability, you have a shot at national merit, and if so, USC offers discounts to NMSF’s (half-tuition discount, making it cheaper than a UC).


Is Coolguy your alternate personality to topic-start, lol?

OP may indeed be considering USC.

“For a few more dollars, a private offers much better value, IMO.”

UCLA and UCB (the latter your school, wrt full disclosure) are much more rigorous than USC, despite the rash of deaths earlier in the fall term due – allegedly – to drugs, (Ritalin, Adderrol?) at the latter. (Ironically, there were some students complaining about how hard the classes were; one student said she knew one of the persons who passed and surmised it was due to course difficulty.)

However despite all the supposed above, both UCLA and UCB have much higher scholarship of students, top to bottom and are much tougher. Ask a group of students in CA and elsewhere what is hierarchy of toughest admits of the three colleges, and most will say without bias, UCLA, then UCB, then USC, because the latter two have larger pools from which to take students: UCB and its 25-35% acceptance rate at the better schools – which is actually a really good admissions strategy; and USC with its search for higher scores (and additionally superscoring and culling scores) without as much regard to grades. USC can (and has) take(n) some really excellent students, but they’re still going to have a large supply of the Olivia Jades of the world, because of the tricks of admission – spring admissions, one term community-college students, legacies, the like.

At Milken Community Schools, USC will take just about anyone with a heartbeat, with a front of a semester taken at Santa Monica College with her/him being admitted in the spring. They’ll ship students off to some foreign land to take a term, with a requisite of a “B” average needed to be admitted. USC has always tried to game admissions; it’s inherent in its nature.

At UCLA and UCB, it doesn’t matter rich or poor: they have to have scholarship all throughout – sociology, ethnic studies notwithstanding; but students searching for light-weight majors in university programs happens everywhere (well, except for Caltech). It just so happens that the poor kids at UCLA are often funneled to soc because the University has placed on itself an obligation to educate the 1st-gens, and some of them need a considerably lighter load to survive. (The soc majors at UCLA are actually very accomplished overall, as they use the major as a lighter courseload to combine with pre-med, pre-health and and as an easier prelaw perusal.)

The girl whom Singer got into UCLA has a parent, the father, who attended UCLA. Her dad knew that UCLA was too competitive for her, so he got Singer to try to get her into USC along with his two other kids, added to the 20-30 or so USC students associated with Varsity Blues. The womens’ soccer coaches at both botched the attempt to get her into USC, so they got her into UCLA, by her supposedly playing soccer. She’s apparently done pretty well in college, but her test scores weren’t taken by a surrogate.

USC is overall a very good college, despite its gaming attempts. But it isn’t UCLA or Cal as far as rigor, and students from high schools will generally attest to this, unless they have a USC bias.

Sorry, don’t know cool guy. Just a long term poster who just shakes my head at all of those OOS’ers who apply to a UC and then find out, ‘gosh, it’s expensive, my family can’t/won’t pay that money.’

  1. Unless they’ve attended both schools (a UC and USC) in the same year, how would they know? And 2) rigor is not necessarily a proxy for academics. I can mean curve a test for the same course at a 50% or a 70%. Does one signify more rigor? Does a 3.4 mean GPA mean that much less rigor than a 3.3?


USC bottom quartile test scores: 660/690

UCLA bottom quartile test scores: 650/640

Not much statistical difference, but “much higher”? Umm, no.

But note, my post said ‘value’ which to me includes not only classroom academics, but availability of majors (not capped), housing, advising, alumni network, etc. (For a bureaucracy that makes the DMV look warm and fuzzy, try UC Housing!) UCLA has forced triples for Frosh. UCLA uses undergrad advisors for undergrad. (A private Uni will make sure Professors are available for advising.)

UC offers good value instate, but not good value for nearly 2x the price. For that kinda money, I’d recommend to a slightly lower-ranked private [nearly*] every time (and that’s what I did for my kid).

fwiw: not pushing USC, just threw it out as an example as they have a good music program which the OP mentioned.

btw: for law schools, the higher GPA is always preferred, so ‘less rigorous’ is the way to go.

*There’s only a few specialized programs which warrant full pay OOS, for example, Cal Engineering, Cal College of Chemistry, UCLA Film School, UCLA Theater. just my $0.02.

@firmament2x : Obviously you have a one sided bias toward UCLA. As an alum of both USC and UCB, I agree that UCB and UCLA are probably a little more rigorous than USC. UCB is more cutthroat than UCLA. My theory is that there are more students flunking out of UCB than UCLA or USC. Public schools might not care as much if some students flunked out. Like Stanford and other private schools, it is more difficult flunking out than at public schools. Also, students at USC are very competitive. There are quite a few USC students, who have been admitted to Ivies, Stanford, etc., who take USC’s full ride than pay full price at other elite schools. With the full ride offer, USC is attempting to attract the highest quality students. The middle 50% range (25 to 75%tile) of unweighted GPAs and SAT scores for accepted students are about the same for all 3 schools. The yields are about the same.

BTW, this post is not about UCLA vs. USC, the topic which I am sure has been over exhausted in other posts.

Then they obviously self-eliminate themselves from UCLA, which is why it has only about a 26-28% yield from oos.

Re: 1:

Are you going to eliminate all I said about all “the Olivia Jades at USC”? Do you think she was the only one? When did she have time for study at USC?

Secondly, students from the same high schools talk among themselves, compare notes. They know which is the tougher university, as UCBUSCalumnus said below.

Re: 2:

You simplify things a little too much. There’s competition, the curve, the amount of study necessary to pull grades, the acceleration factor; all these are included in rigor.

You know as well as I that the UCs, inclusive of UCLA, are trying to educate the 1st-gens. Being that the 25th percentile are most likely from URM background as well as predominantly 1st-gen, UCLA makes the exception in test scores for them, but not for grades.

The 25th for students at UCLA have the following stats:

SAT…………1,250……………1,390….…….1,450………………….1,290 (per CDS, UCLA Adm has 1,280)

For USC, the 25th has one blended stat: 3.72/1,350.

The gpa factor combined with the lowest cohort at UCLA being URM and 1st gen, affects UCLA admissions. Remember, I said that USC looks for scores – in its gaming attempts because test scores are the only thing reported wrt standards of admission, oddly enough, with no consideration of grades, and therefore USC doubtlessly discounts grades (somewhat inferred from my previous statements) for the 25th.

More stats from UCLA’s CDS: https://www.apb.ucla.edu/campus-statistics/common-data-set

  • Acccording to the C11 data: UCLA has a 4.0 that descends to the 52.3-percentile – or stated another way, 47.7% of UCLA students have a 4.0, with 98% of the students reporting gpa. USC has a 4.0 that descends to the 75th percentile, with a 3.99 gpa.
  • According to the C12 data: UCLA has a ~ 1,410 (50th percentile) combined SAT, by stating that individual scores of 1,400-1,600 were attained by 56.7% of the freshmen. Addtionally, you undoubtedly know that UCLA as part of the UC doesn’t superscore (but USC does). Superscoring (“ss”) adds 20-30 points to the median, which implies that the ss median for UCLA students is 1,430-1,440, about the same as USC’s. (I wouldn’t expect USC not to take advantage of the presentation of higher numbers.) These numbers for UCLA additionally reflect the larger number of 1st gens, but not all of them have less than 1,300 scores, as many of them are high-scoring. (And btw, Stanford shows 97% with a 4.0; the tiered numbers don’t really add up, and only 81% reported gpa, but their numbers are undoubtedly astronomical – and it’s apparent that the University considers grades more than, say, the Ivies, as its frosh test scores are lower.)

Classroom academics. . . too nebulous a term for me. If you’re talking about class size, just remember that the intro courses for Ivies and Stanford are large too. USC’s are smaller than UCLA’s, but they aren’t materially so; in addition they also have grunt lecturers in a few more sections, which means a heavy involvement by TAs, just as at UCLA and UC.

Availability of Majors. . . UCLA has a bunch of specialties and minors: Specialization in Computing via the PIC courses, which just about anyone can take, and computing courses in bio, geography, mathematics, etc; an accounting minor - I’ve seen sociology majors who’ve minored in this and take jobs at firms; the premed track is available to all the social-science majors, etc….

Housing. . .it is available to all frosh for three, and soon to be for four years. Yes, the triples are problematic, but there are doubles and even singles for those who need it, or the student can opt for off-campus housing in a nice area unlike UCB or USC.

Undergrad advisors. . .Are you sure about this one for USC?

I know you’re just presenting the company spiel that is prevalent on College Confidential, but it’s not your call, if a student wants to experience UCLA. There are very few places that have the quality of life that the school has – with ancillary things related to academics such as weather and the beach 5 miles away, hiking along the Santa Monica mountain trails, along with places to eat and spend some much needed time off of campus, but, you’re solely into the academic side of things, apparently.

Not for those whose wealth translates a $250k price tag over two decimal places to the left. You undoubtedly know yourself being associated with UCB. But too, UCLA, through donations, has raised up its engineering, built a new Engineering VI building, and is looking to increase its undergrad programs by a good 1000-1,500 and become more STEM oriented.

@UCBUSCalum . . .

UCB might be more cutthroat but it’s not any easier. UCLA is on the more accelerated quarter-system. The grade deflation thing at UCB is just myth.

I don’t doubt that USC has some incredibly competitive students – it does, but it also has a lot of Olivia Jade types. That’s what my point was.

@bluebayou, let me also state that UC is trying to deemphasize the college boards and ACT in its admission process. You know this as well as I because the University believes that board scores are a function of wealth.

I can’t agree to this because there are standardized tests that need to be taken by those who want to become doctors, attorneys and other professionals. I believe that UC should keep them, and continue to send its students out to poorer high schools (and maybe to jr high students’ schools) to bring these students up to speed.

In the meantime, with grades to UC being like snow to Eskimos, there are numerous gpa markers which UC take into consideration. I think that someone with a 4.0/4.2/1,200 SAT is not excluded from success at UC, but it’s going to take him/her a bit longer to adjust to college. UC does have to educate the “underclass” and bring them up too, and it’ll end it enriching the state.

I was unfortunately multitasking yesterday, so my post #13 had some flaws.

Let me append some additional data since you @bluebayou seemed to be questioning the qualifications of UCLA’s CA freshman cohort with respect to scores.

I’ll use the total freshman class in 2019 as 5,920 students from UCLA Admissions; this will differ from the CDS. Here’s the link:


The matrix I want to use is this one from above for UCLA’s entering freshman class of 2019 at the 25th percentile:


Of the 5,920 enrolled freshmen cohort, the breakdowns wrt residence were the following:


The OOS students had a 1,390 SAT at the 25th percentile. This would imply that ~ 72% had ≥ 1,400 score. This totals 683 students of the 948 total.

The Internationals had 100% with ≥ 1,400, equaling 539.

The total of these two sub-cohorts is 1,222 students.

Per C9 data of the following link, there were, again, 56.7% who scored ≥ 1,400, or 3,357 students. Subtracting out the 1,222 non-CA students leaves 2,135 CA students who scored ≥ 1,400.


2,135/4,433 (CA students with ≥ 1,400 / Total CA students) equals 48.2% who scored at least a 1,400. That would probably equate to a 1,390 at the 50th percentile (median).

The 25th/75th score for CA freshmen was 1,250/1,500. The midpoint of these two scores used to determine median as a quick and cheap way is 1,375, with the actual median being 1,390 un-ss. With superscoring that would be ~ 1,410-1,420.

Additionally, there’s another factor in how UCLA presents a lower SAT in its CDS, IPEDS, etc:

UCLA reported as in its 2019 CDS, also in its C9 data ~ 124% of the combined reported SAT and ACT scores on its 2019 CDS for its 5,920 freshmen. If generally one test score were representative of each student’s score in enabling his or her admission to UCLA, then there were a good portion of the 24% which didn’t enable the student to be accepted, but were lower based on percentile achieved as referenced by the concordance comparing SAT and ACT scores. There will be some that concord to similar rankings, but most will have some displacement. Colleges that report 100% like Notre Dame and Duke will have culled out the extraneous scores, which is seemingly the correct procedure, but those that report 105-110 (or a bit higher range) – I’m guessing – keep extraneous higher scores (say, over the median SAT of the schools’ freshman scores). But UCLAs and UCs reporting does include a predominance of lower (than their median) scores by reporting higher combined percentages.

Additionally, I neglected the ‘alumni network’ aspect of why private (particularly USC) > than UCLA.

I’m not sure where this comes into play for those who attend Medical, Dental, Pharmacy school; or Law school for UCLA students. I agree that where it definitely has a play is in business and undoubtedly USC has good networking. However, UCLA students interested in a bus career are joining the Undergrad Business Society and some of the clubs that are under its umbrella in consulting, IB or whatever. By attaining scholarship and by taking internships, it’s evident that major becomes less important (beyond their studying Business Economics or Econ). The various Mathematics majors at UCLA, Stats, Data Theory, Financial Actuarial Mathematics, etc., are great preparatory for various bus sectors, provided the student follows through with the above.

@firmament2x : Your comment re: Jade is based on perception, which is not proven true.

“I don’t doubt that USC has some incredibly competitive students – it does, but it also has a lot of Olivia Jade types. That’s what my point was.”

I agree that there are Jade type at USC, but only a small number and NOT a lot. I am sure there are those types at UCLA too. At UCB, there were some, but few, dumb ones, and not super wealthy. These dumb ones could not do simple math (a little exaggerated) and would make your eyes row.

Below is a list ranking the most college alums working in Silicon Valley. USC is in the top 5, UCLA in the 2nd 10.


@UCBUSCalumnus . . .

Some of what I stated was in reference to the numerous students USC admits who bypass the stats-part of its CDS. Typically, the freshman class at USC is (I believe) ~ 3,000 (please correct me if I’m wrong; also I don’t want to forward a response by double-checking numerous data and get caught up in time), but it also admits ~ 600 in the spring (possible fact-check also). These typically spend a term at the local community college or overseas.

Undoubtedly like Cal, whom I believe also admits a pretty large spring class, some of this is the clearing out of dorm space by various students who’ve graduated in the fall to free rooms, along with other logistical concerns wrt space.

But unlike Cal’s spring admits, at least some of USC’s spring enrollees seem to have questionable stats – I’m speaking here of the legacies, so noted because some of them are distant in relationship. We’ll never know what they present as qualifications because the University being private doesn’t have to divulge this info to us. Opposite to this, UC – and especially UCLA – is incredibly transparent.

Some students are admitted after one year at community or other colleges and are considered transfers, which unlike UC which requires these students to qualify or requalify by taking a full two years at the community colleges and to then pick majors at UC.

(There’s some problems with UC’s xfer policy also because these students are more tied to taking mostly major-related classes because they have less units to delve into other courses. This is why soc is popular from cc to UCLA because it’s “short” as some will say here, which leaves the student to take a pre-dent, pre-pharm, or even pre-med track, along with using soc as a prelaw. Some as I mentioned have majored in soc and have added a minor in accounting or the specialization in computing.)

UCLA does admit the most transfers of all the UCs, ~ 3,000, but the enrolled have a 3.70-3.95 gpa at the 25th – 75th, which means they have nearly the same qualifications as the high-school admits, with some, probably most, having found themselves at cc.

Wrt to USC, there are also some at the University who are admitted after just one term at cc (SMC) – per my reference about USC taking a lot of students from Milken Community Schools and undoubtedly from other private high schools also. It’s not apparent if they’re spring admits or transfers.

Obviously, Olivia Jade wasn’t one of these types of admits; she was a part of a process along with the others who gained admission fraudulently beyond the University’s admittance. But by bypassing the presentation of stats, there are undoubtedly others who oddly don’t study in a competitive sense to qualify and don’t seem to study much at USC.

UCLA undoubtedly has the social-media (“sm”) types, also, but they find that their careers on sm have to be put on the backburner because the University being rigorous (i.e., quarter-system, tough curriculum) isn’t going to allow for a predominance of non-academic activity.

Regarding your link to the most represented colleges at the Silicon companies, one has to factor in that UCLA’s E/CS school has had less enrollment than UCB and UCSD, which is also why the Ivies aren’t in the top-10, and MIT is just smaller in total enrollment. Also, the presence – if the data are correct – of ASU tells me that a lot of these are business associates and managers.

Here’s some data from the following website,

https://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/infocenter/degrees-awarded-data of E/CS graduates in each of the years listed:


UCB has ~ 600 CS graduates/year, and most of these are from L&S and not E. UCLA only recently has started to ratchet up its E/CS presence, due in part to a large donation from an engineer to his namesake at the HSSEAS. If UCLA is looking to increase its current enrollment from 4,000 to 5,000-5,500 that’ll mean ~ 1,000-1,250 E/CS grads/year. The University is currently in the process of hiring 100 additional E faculty to meet the higher enrollment.

As a side note, some say that UCLA is THE premed school of all the UCs. But yet, there were the following graduates from UCB, UCSD, and UCLA for the most prevalent premed-related majors:

Life Sciences:


Physical Sciences:


Note: Biochemistry is typically listed as a physical science or interdisciplinary major; at UCLA it’s under the physical sciences.

But despite UCLA’s trailing the other two in enrollment in the sciences, there are more of its baccalaureates who attend med school by a significant amount. (A lot of this is having UCLA Reagan Med Center on campus, leading to research and shadowing opps for its undergrads.) But it also shows that UCLA students from social sciences and other departments do go to med school also in good numbers.

Anyway, sorry for the quasi-thesis and “conversing” with you is not at all unpleasant; you’re very civil.

@firmament2x : I don’t have any stats on Spring freshmen admits to USC. Your analysis of USC transfers is overblown. USC has high standards for transfers. 3.7 is the average GPA. See transfers and freshman stats below:



In my opinion, if a student is admitted to UCB, UCLA and USC and costs are not a factor, depending on the major, preferences, it is a toss up on which school to attend. If costs are a factor (assuming no scholarships, financial aid, or parent’s money), it is a no brainer to pick UCB or UCLA over the high costs of USC.

A note, USC does have quite a few Pell Students and offers much financial aid, scholarships and merit awards to low income students who are admitted.

Moderator’s Note:
@UCBUSCalum @firmament2x Please don’t stray from the original topic. Also a friendly reminder that CC is not a debate forum and this discussion is heading that way. If one of you would like to create a thread on this topic you are certainly welcome to. Thanks!