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USC vs. UCLA: Top Factors You Must Consider
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    USC vs. UCLA: Top Factors You Must Consider

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    Whether you enroll at the University of Southern California (USC) or the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), be aware that both institutions enjoy a high reputation in the United States. USC and UCLA both have their own beliefs and missions concerning higher education.  

    UCLA and USC are ranked 20th and 25th on U.S. News and World Report’s list of the best national universities. So, you might wonder: Should I go for USC or UCLA? Let’s examine each separately, beginning with the University of California, Los Angeles.

    UCLA has a 419-acre campus near the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Monica Mountains in the Los Angeles district of Westwood. STEM and engineering are powerful at UCLA. The David Geffen School of Medicine is located there, and it is known for its top-notch laboratory facilities and one of the best medical programs in the world. 

    In addition to providing education in 40 different languages, UCLA offers 125 majors, and 90 minors, many of which are among the top academic programs in the country. UCLA encourages all students to broaden their horizons and find their niche among various cultures by supporting over 1,200 clubs and student organizations. 

    Speaking of disadvantages, the cons of UCLA are common for every sizeable public university in the country, i.e the size of the classes, the complexity of some administrative tasks, and the need for undergraduates to be more self-reliant than they would be at a smaller institution with more individualized support for each student.

    Now let’s take a brief look at the University of Southern California

    The University of Southern California is a private university standing tall near downtown Los Angeles. The university takes pride in being a large research-based institution with the liberal arts school’s emphasis on its students. Despite having a relatively large undergraduate enrolment of 21,000 students, it claims typical class sizes of 26 students and an 8:1 student-to-faculty ratio. 

    Over 150 different majors and areas of specialization are available at USC, and undergrads have access to a vast array of study options. The institution strongly emphasizes interdisciplinary thinking among its students and is well-known for its arts, technology, and business programs.

    Major Differences between USC and UCLA

    The most notable distinction between USC and UCLA is that the former is a private school, while the latter is public. Tuition and the application process are just a few of the many things they differ on!! UCLA and USC incur very different tuition prices. USC’s estimated tuition is about $63,500, while UCLA’s in-state and out-of-state tuition costs are $37,500 and $68,500, respectively. 

    Their respective application systems are another area where USC and UCLA differ. You can apply to USC and UCLA using the Common Application and the U.C. Application, respectively. 

    Admissions Requirements

    USC Requirements

    Students who want to attend USC should be familiar with the prerequisites for their application. Here is a list of everything you need to apply to USC, from GPA requirements to letters of recommendation.

    GPA and Additional Courses

    USC gives preference to candidates who are top of their class and have excellent grades. Most of their freshmen intakes are in the top 10% of their course and have average unweighted GPAs ranging from 3.82 to 4.0.

    It is advised for applicants to USC to enroll in challenging courses, such as those offered through the I.B. or A.P. programs. USC is explicitly searching for students who have completed at least three years of high school mathematics with a “C” or above grade.

    It is optional for applicants to submit their SAT or ACT results. The admissions committee will consider your top score if you decide to submit your test results. Remember that the SAT or ACT writing test is unnecessary for admission to USC.

    UCLA Requirements

    UCLA requirements are very straightforward. Along with other qualities like creativity and academics, UCLA seeks students with exceptional leadership abilities. Additionally, the school seeks out kids who excel inside and outside the classroom.

    UCLA doesn’t consider ACT OR SAT results for freshmen applications. As an alternative evaluation method, these scores are used to satisfy any unmet eligibility requirements or determine future course placement after enrollment. Instead, candidates are strongly advised to take A.P. classes while still in high school.

    GPA and Additional Courses

    To be considered for admission, competitive applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 (for California residents) or 3.4 (for non-California residents). Students should not meet the required GPA to remain competitive. Freshmen’s unweighted GPA ranges from 3.95 to 4.00 on average.

    Additionally, candidates must pass 15 college-preparatory (A-G) courses, at least 11 of which must be finished before beginning their senior year of high school. History, English, Mathematics, Science, Alternative Languages, Visual and Performing Arts, and a College-Preparatory Elective must all have been completed by applicants with a grade of C or above.

    Rate of Acceptance

    A solid application portfolio would be best because USC and UCLA have selective admissions rates. Of the almost 150,000 applications, UCLA only accepted 9% in the autumn of 2022. Of these applicants, nearly half chose to enroll. 

    Only 12% of the 69,000 potential students that applied to USC for fall 2022 were accepted. Among those admitted, only half enrolled. Test results, extracurricular activities, and essays are just a few variables that can increase your likelihood of getting into any institution.

    Acceptance Rate And Admission Statistics

    Student Body

    The University of Southern California has 49,000 students enrolled in classes during the 2022–2023 academic year. More than half of them took graduate- or professional-level courses. More than half of the students were from other countries.

    In 2022–2023, UCLA educated close to 48,000. UCLA educated a lot more undergraduates than USC, and the vast majority of students return after their first year.

    Student To Faculty Ratio

    You can receive individualized attention from your lecturers at UCLA because of its 18:1 student-to-faculty ratio. Developing connections with professors can be beneficial if you require a recommendation letter for graduate school or a job. Additionally, networking with people who share similar interests is a benefit of smaller class sizes.

    Although USC is more expensive than UCLA, the modest student-to-faculty ratio of 9:1 offers a learning environment that few other universities can match. In smaller classes, USC professors can employ a variety of instructional techniques, and you can participate in class discussions more frequently.

    To sum it up, we have attached a table below presenting data from U.S. News, Niche, and UCLA and USC’s 2021-2022 Common Data Sets to help you better understand the difference and provide enough information to choose wisely!!

    UCLA vs USC Comparison

    Aspect UCLA USC
    University Name University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) University of Southern California (USC)
    Location Los Angeles, California (One Campus) Los Angeles, California (Two Campuses)
    Public or Private? Public Private
    Total Enrollment 47,516 49,318
    Undergraduate Enrollment 32,119 20,790
    US News Rankings #1 in Top Public Schools
    #20 in National Universities
    #62 in Best Value Schools
    #25 in National Universities
    Niche Grade A+ A+
    Number of Majors ~125 ~200
    Student/Faculty Ratio 18:1 9:1
    Acceptance Rate 11% 13%
    ACT/SAT Policy Test-Blind Test-Optional
    Gender Ratio Female: 60%
    Male: 40%
    Female: 52%
    Male: 48%
    Ethnicity Breakdown Asian: 29%
    White: 26%
    Hispanic: 22%
    International: 10%
    Two or more races: 7%
    Black: 3%
    Unknown: 3%
    White: 32%
    Asian: 24%
    Hispanic: 17%
    International: 12%
    Black: 6%
    Two or more races: 6%
    Unknown: 2%
    Average Tuition and Fees Out-of-State: $47,052
    In-State: $14,478
    $66,640
    Average Room & Board $17,148 $17,434
    Average Debt at Graduation $19,061 $27,413
    Overall Reputation One of the top public universities in the nation (US News ranks it as #1); well known for its prestigious School of Theater, Film, and Television, as well as its School of Dentistry One of the top universities in the nation (US News ranks it as #25); well known for its highly esteemed School of Cinematic Arts, as well as its School of Communication and Journalism

    Gaining entry into America’s top-notch universities can be a tough affair and we at Moonpreneur is on a mission to educate and ignite the flames of entrepreneurship through our holistically created online STEM programs, which will help kids master the futuristic sciences such as Robotics, Game Development, App Development, Advanced Math, and much more!! 

    Register for a free 60-minute robotics workshop today!

    Rishabh Prasad

    Rishabh Prasad

    A writer with a talent to play with words and deliver impactful content. I have an undying love for literature, and firmly believe that pens have the power to change the course of human history!!
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    4 Comments
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    Petrick Clarke
    Petrick Clarke
    2 months ago

    Is UCLA public or private?

    Courtney Wilson
    Courtney Wilson
    1 month ago
    Reply to  Petrick Clarke

    It is a public institution.

    William Rodriguez
    William Rodriguez
    1 month ago

    Which is harder to get into, USC or UCLA?

    Joseph
    Joseph
    26 days ago

    While both USC and UCLA are prestigious schools in California, they have different admission rates and processes. Typically, UCLA has been more competitive, with a lower acceptance rate, making it harder to get into

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