First-Year Applicants

First-year applicants are currently enrolled in high school, or have not attended college since graduation. If that doesn’t apply to you, select a new application type.

Application Pathways

UIC has two main pathways for first-year admission. Each pathway to admission has its own advantage. Be mindful of requirements and dates when choosing the one that’s right for you.



Early Action is a nonbinding application process. Applicants get a faster decision and priority consideration for scholarships — no strings attached. Candidates receive an admissions decision by Dec. 15.  This is the most common application process offered at colleges and universities. Candidates receive an admission decision between December and March. 
The application deadline for Early Action is Nov. 1.  The application deadline for Regular Decision is Feb. 15.

Learn more about application plans.

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Here’s what you need to apply

All first-year applicants must meet these requirements to complete an application.

  • Complete the Common Application online, including the specific questions and essays for UIC under the "My Colleges" tab. See application tips for details.
  • Submit the $60 nonrefundable application fee or fee waiver.*
  • Send official high school transcripts.
  • Optional: Send ACT or SAT scores (See our test optional FAQ). Please note, if you choose to submit a score ("Test Inclusive"), you must provide a score report. We do not accept self-reported scores. We will accept scores if listed on the high school transcript, or an unofficial test report with identifying information (name, test date). We do not accept "super scores." To get a copy of your SAT score, you can visit this link.

*Fee waivers are only accepted for domestic applications. We do not offer application fee waivers for international students at this time.

Learn more about credential submission.

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What we review

Factors for Admission

UIC admissions counselors review your application for academic preparedness and potential contribution to the UIC community. Here’s what we’re reviewing on your application. 

  • High school performance​
  • Essays
    • Quality of writing
    • Demonstration of academic interest
    • Identification of any current circumstances that contributed to your high school performance
  • Choice of Major
    • Each College within the University has its own criteria when selecting applicants for admission. For example, STEM-related fields (i.e. engineering, computer science, biological sciences, and pre-health majors) may have different expectations for performance in high school math and science while other majors may emphasize strong grades in english. If applying for a STEM major, we strongly recommend taking four years of math and science in high school.
  • Test scores (optional)
    • ACT or SAT scores are not required for admission but will be reviewed if provided. 
    • AP or IB scores are not required but will be reviewed if provided.

Planning pays off

Plan your High School Coursework

While not required for admission, completed coursework in the subject areas listed below can make prospective first-year applicants more competitive. 

Course Recommendations for Competitive Applications
Subject Recommended for All Majors Recommended for STEM and Business Majors
English 4 years 4 years
Mathematics 3-4 years (including algebra, geometry, advanced algebra/trigonometry) 4 years (coursework at or above precalculus is highly recommended)
Science 3 years 4 years
Social Science 3 years 3 years
Second Language 2 years 2 years

Additional Tips

  • Take advantage of honors, AP, or IB and other college preparatory courses offered at your high school. When reviewing course rigor, our review team takes into consideration the coursework available at your high school.  
  • Submit letters of recommendation from teachers, counselors, or extracurricular activity supervisors.
  • Submit the Common Application mid-year report when your first semester grades from senior year become available.

Admitted Student Profile

Middle 50 Percent of the Admitted Fall 2023 First-Year Class

The values listed below represent the middle 50 percent of students who were admitted to UIC last year. They are not cut-offs for admission. In fact, 25 percent of admitted students fell below these ranges and 25 percent above. 

  • We offer a test-optional pathway for admission and about two-thirds of applicants chose to be reviewed without a test score. We have split the profile into a test-optional profile and a test-inclusive profile.
  • We know that numbers don't tell us the whole story. Remember while reviewing these charts that we conduct a holistic review of your application based on multiple factors not represented in these charts. 

Test Optional Profile

The test-optional profile includes the middle 50 percent of unweighted grade point averages for high school coursework and the average number of honors, AP, and IB classes taken.

UIC College Grade Point Average (unweighted) Average Number of AP/IB/Honors Classes
Applied Health Sciences 3.2-3.7 3-5
Architecture, Design, & the Arts 3.3-3.8 6-9
Business Administration 3.2-3.8 3-5
Education 3.0-3.7 6-9
Engineering 3.4-3.8 6-9
Liberal Arts and Sciences 3.3-3.8 6-9
Urban Planning & Public Affairs 2.9-3.6 6-9
Public Health 3.1-3.7 6-9

Test Inclusive Profile

In the test-inclusive profile includes the middle 50 percent unweighted grade point averages for high school coursework and the middle 50 percent of test scores for the SAT or the equivalent ACT score.

UIC College Grade Point Average (unweighted) SAT
Applied Health Sciences 3.2-3.9 1110-1290
Architecture, Design, & the Arts 3.4-3.9 1140-1340
Business Administration 3.2-3.8 1140-1310
Education 2.9-3.7 1050-1220
Engineering 3.5-4.0 1240-1450
Liberal Arts and Sciences 3.4-3.9 1170-1380
Urban Planning & Public Affairs 3.0-3.8 1170-1370
Public Health 3.4-3.9 1210-1430

Other Requirements

Additional Requirements may Apply:

  • Honors College and Guaranteed Professional Program Admissions (GPPA) applicants. Must be admitted as undergraduates prior to review. The following supplemental documents are required for Honors College and GPPA applicants: 
    • An essay for each program submitted with the application.
    • Two recommendations submitted through the Common Application or via mail.
  • International applicants. Must meet the core first-year requirements as well as display evidence of English competency and financial certifications. See Undergraduate International Admissions Requirements for details. 
  • Home-schooled students. Must satisfy all of the above requirements. Acceptable transcripts for home-school students must include: 
    • a list of all subjects/courses attempted by year.
    • grades and/or examination results received (both passing and failing).
    • maximum and minimum grades obtainable.
    • number of units earned.
  • High school graduates who have never attended another college or university must submit evidence of graduation from an accredited high school or submit passing scores on the General Educational Development (GED) test.
  • Applicants to performance programs. An audition is required for admission to all performance degree applicants. For audition requirements for theatre programs, please visit the Theatre Department's Auditions webpage, for Music programs, please visit the Music Department's Auditions webpage