How to Get into UGA: SAT and ACT Scores, GPA and More

UGA campus building representing how to get into UGA - image by Magoosh

If you’re looking for a vibrant campus in a small town, the University of Georgia (UGA) just might be for you! Founded in 1785, UGA is the oldest public college in the U.S. With 700+ student organizations and NCAA Division I sports teams, the school promises just about everything you could want. So what do you need to know about how to get into UGA? In this post, we’ll take a look at UGA admissions, including UGA SAT and ACT scores!

Before anything else, here’s UGA admissions data in a nutshell!
 

UGA Admission Rate46%
UGA SAT scores (middle 50%)1310-1460
UGA ACT scores (middle 50%)30-34
UGA GPA for admitted freshman (middle 50%, weighted)3.94-4.21


 

Table of Contents


 

UGA SAT Scores

Before anything else, know this: UGA is going test-optional for fall 2021!! If you already have scores you love, that’s great—make sure you submit the official score report.

However, if you haven’t taken the test yet and are worried about doing so, know that you don’t have to this year.

Future students, take note: UGA admissions hasn’t decided yet whether to continue the policy into future years, so plan on taking either the ACT or the SAT for now…we’ll keep you posted!

In the meantime, here’s the rundown of UGA SAT scores. Like the school, we’re providing these from the 25th percentile to the 75th percentile.

Section25th Percentile75th Percentile
Math610720
Reading/Writing630700
Composite13101460

Pretty high! But remember that 25% of students scored below a composite of 1310, and 75% scored above a composite of 1460 (wow!).

If your scores are well within or above the average SAT scores range for UGA in both sections, that’s awesome! But if they’re not, you can retake the exam without any fear: UGA uses SAT superscores in admissions.
 
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UGA ACT Scores

Just in case you skipped right down to this section (who could blame you?!), we’ll say it again: UGA is test-optional for fall 2021, and may or may not be in future years, so keep that in mind when seeing where your scores stack up.

Without further ado, here they are: UGA ACT scores!

Section25th Percentile75th Percentile
Math*2531
English*2735
Composite3034

*2019 data

Those scores are pretty high—composite 30-34 is equivalent to the 93rd-99th percentiles on the ACT.

The fact that the composite score from the 2020 admissions cycle is so much higher than the sectional scores (which are from the 2019 admissions cycle—the school didn’t provide them for the most recent year) tells you that the sectional scores likely jumped up over the course of the last year, too.

However, if some of your sectional scores are already within that 30-34 UGA ACT scores range, you’re in luck! You may want to take the ACT again, because the admissions offers will use your highest sectional scores, no matter which test day they come from. That’s right: they use the ACT superscore!
 
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UGA Acceptance Rate

The overall acceptance rate at UGA is pretty competitive, at 46%. However, that’s for regular decision admissions. The number jumps up higher for early action applicants, who are accepted at a rate of 58.5%.

What does this tell you? Well, if UGA’s your dream school, let them know by submitting an early action application! It can only help your chances.

For transfer students, meanwhile, the acceptance rate jumped to 70%. So if you’d love to go to school in Athens, Georgia, but you didn’t get in the first time around, this might be a good option for you!

  • Pro-tip from slyndgaard (UGA ’18), AdmitSee:
“They recognize that your performance over the past four years is more indicative of your potential college performance than a single test during your junior or senior year. The SAT and ACT are still critical, but don’t slow down your focus on junior/senior classes in the hope of adding a few points to your score!”

 
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UGA GPA Average

By their own admission, grades and academics (coursework) are the most important factors the UGA admissions counselors review. They’ve provided GPAs for core subjects for two different groups of students: all admitted first-year students (freshmen) and all admitted honors students.

For incoming freshman generally, the middle 50% of GPAs was 3.94-4.21. For honors students, that jumped up to 4.00-4.30.

Whoa, whoa, whoa, you might be thinking. GPAs above 4.0? What the—

These are weighted GPAs, or GPAs where some classes (think: AP, IB, honors) were graded out of the 5.0 scale (5 = A, 4 = B) instead of the traditional 4.0 scale (4 = A, 3 = B).

So students at UGA definitely had high GPAs—but you don’t necessarily need straight As to get in (though they couldn’t hurt!).

Note that UGA admissions actually unweights all GPAs to the 4.0 scale during the admissions process, though the school reports the weighted GPAs to look tougher. Sneaky!
 
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University of Georgia Freshman Profile

Although UGA is a public university in the state of Georgia, its students come from around the world and from all different American backgrounds. Last year, admitted students came from 67 countries. Meanwhile, 800 U.S. students came from households where English was not the primary language spoken.

However, if you’re an anxious local, you can set your worries aside: the Georgians are definitely represented at UGA! Last year, students from 534 different high schools and 155 different counties within the state were admitted.

Overall, students came from 43 different states. After Georgia, the students with the highest UGA representation were from North Carolina, Florida, and Texas.
 
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Other Admissions Requirements and Info

To get into UGA, you’ll need to have taken the required high school curriculum. This includes:

  • 4 units of mathematics
  • 4 units of English
  • 3 units of science
  • 3 units of social science
  • 2 units of the same foreign language

In addition to the school or counselor evaluation on the Common App, you’ll also need to submit the optional letter from a teacher or counselor. The school should also send your official high school transcripts.

UGA has a wide variety of application deadlines, depending on when you want to start your studies, whether you’re applying for a dual program, whether you’re applying early decision, and a variety of other factors, so check out their list of these deadlines to stay updated!
 
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FAQs

How hard is it to get into UGA?

Medium hard? It’s like asking “how long is a piece of string”—it depends on your application. The school accepts 46% of applicants overall, so you have about a 1 in 2 chance of getting in. This is tougher than a lot of public universities, but not as competitive as some selective private universities, like the Ivy League.

For transfer students, it gets significantly easier: their acceptance rate was 70%, or 7 in 10.

Applying through early action can also increase your likelihood of getting in, depending on where your application strengths lie.

“For the academic-based early admission application, UGA doesn’t look at anything like essays, recommendations, or extracurriculars, unless you are deferred, in which case you will be asked to submit Part Two with this supplemental information. For some, this may not be the best fit, but if you have strong scores and grades and want a stress-free, quick application, this is for you. Applying took me less than 45 minutes. One tip would be to go ahead and send in your SAT or ACT scores as you take the test, rather than waiting to send them later. UGA superscores, so you have nothing to lose by sending them in ASAP.”

Does UGA have a waitlist?

Yes! Out of approximately 700 students who opted to stay on the waitlist in 2020, 300 were offered admission. Keep in mind, however, that the numbers have not been as favorable for waitlisted students in prior years. Make sure you (gently, once) express your continued interest in UGA to the admissions office if it’s your dream school and you’re waiting to hear back.

What are the top programs at UGA?

The most popular UGA majors are (in order): Finance, Psychology, Biology, Marketing, and International Relations.

However, as the #15 Top Public School in the US (according to the US News & World Report), UGA also has a lot of other great offerings. For example, the same publication rated them #1 in business insurance programs (who knew!), #102 in undergraduate engineering, and #104 in computer science.

What else makes UGA unique?

The UGA student experience is definitely a vibrant one: Athens has been voted into the top college town in the United States.

At the school, you’ll find a pretty significant portion of the population involved in Greek life (about 25%), but for those who aren’t interested in fraternities or sororities, there are 700+ clubs and organizations you can take part in, instead.

In addition, UGA athletics are D1 in the NCAA, so they’re pretty competitive.

No doubt about it—you won’t be bored at UGA!

Does UGA offer financial aid?

Yes! They offer both need-based scholarships/grants and merit-based aid to help cover tuition and living expenses. The average need-based aid is $11,227, and the average merit-based aid is $3,756. Overall, the school covers 74% of its students financial need.

What are some UGA admission myths?

UGA addreses some of these head-on, but here are a few key debunkings!

There’s no minimum SAT, ACT, or GPA. They look at your whole application, so low numbers in any particular area won’t necessarily hurt your application. If you’ve taken challenging courses and gotten slightly less-than-perfect grades and a lower GPA, it’s better (in terms of both admissions decisions and life) than coasting by in easy courses with a perfect 4.0! Rigorous courses are a good thing!

They don’t have quotas for any given location, whether that’s your state or your high school.

They also don’t need you to be a well-rounded student (necessarily). This is a huge myth around selective college applications in general. Schools are actually looking to create well-rounded student bodies, not to admit only well-rounded students. So let your passions shine in your application!
 
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How to Get into UGA: A Final Look

Still wondering how to get into UGA? Make sure your personality comes through in your essays, description of extracurricular activities, and letters of recommendation. Share why you’d be a good fit for the school. And, if you can, get your test scores into the UGA average ACT score or SAT score range (need help? Magoosh offers a 4-point ACT score increase guarantee, and a 100-point SAT score increase guarantee!). Good luck!

Improve your SAT or ACT score, guaranteed. Start your 1 Week Free Trial of Magoosh SAT Prep or your 1 Week Free Trial of Magoosh ACT Prep today!

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Author

  • Rachel Kapelke-Dale

    Rachel is a Magoosh Content Creator. She writes and updates content on our High School and GRE Blogs to ensure students are equipped with the best information during their test prep journey. As a test-prep instructor for more than five years in there different countries, Rachel has helped students around the world prepare for various standardized tests, including the SAT, ACT, TOEFL, GRE, and GMAT, and she is one of the authors of our Magoosh ACT Prep Book. Rachel has a Bachelor of Arts in Comparative Literature from Brown University, an MA in Cinematography from the Université de Paris VII, and a Ph.D. in Film Studies from University College London. For over a decade, Rachel has honed her craft as a fiction and memoir writer and public speaker. Her novel, THE BALLERINAS, is forthcoming in December 2021 from St. Martin's Press, while her memoir, GRADUATES IN WONDERLAND, co-written with Jessica Pan, was published in 2014 by Penguin Random House. Her work has appeared in over a dozen online and print publications, including Vanity Fair Hollywood. When she isn't strategically stringing words together at Magoosh, you can find Rachel riding horses or with her nose in a book. Join her on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook!

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