VCU Requirements for Admission
Choose Your Test
What are VCU’s admission requirements? While there are a lot of pieces that go into a college application, you should focus on only a few critical things:
- GPA requirements
- Testing requirements, including SAT and ACT requirements
- Application requirements
In this guide we’ll cover what you need to get into VCU and build a strong application.
School location: Richmond, VA
This school is also known as: Virginia Commonwealth University
Admissions Rate: 72%
If you want to get in, the first thing to look at is the acceptance rate. This tells you how competitive the school is and how serious their requirements are.
The acceptance rate at VCU is 72%. For every 100 applicants, 72 are admitted.
This means the school is lightly selective. The school will have their expected requirements for GPA and SAT/ACT scores. If you meet their requirements, you’re almost certain to get an offer of admission. But if you don’t meet VCU’s requirements, you’ll be one of the unlucky few people who gets rejected.
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VCU GPA Requirements
Many schools specify a minimum GPA requirement, but this is often just the bare minimum to submit an application without immediately getting rejected.
The GPA requirement that really matters is the GPA you need for a real chance of getting in. For this, we look at the school’s average GPA for its current students.
Average GPA: 3.64
The average GPA at VCU is 3.64.
(Most schools use a weighted GPA out of 4.0, though some report an unweighted GPA.
With a GPA of 3.64, VCU requires you to be above average in your high school class. You’ll need at least a mix of A’s and B’s, with more A’s than B’s. You can compensate for a lower GPA with harder classes, like AP or IB classes. This will show that you’re able to handle more difficult academics than the average high school student.
If you’re currently a junior or senior, your GPA is hard to change in time for college applications. If your GPA is at or below the school average of 3.64, you’ll need a higher SAT or ACT score to compensate. This will help you compete effectively against other applicants who have higher GPAs than you.
SAT and ACT Requirements
Each school has different requirements for standardized testing. Most schools require the SAT or ACT, and many also require SAT subject tests.
VCU has indicated that the SAT or ACT is required for some applicants. This can mean a few things:
- The SAT or ACT is optional, but recommended by the school to improve your application chances.
- You might be able to get admitted with through your GPA or class ranking alone.
- Only specific departments at the school require the SAT or ACT.
If you’re applying to this and other schools, it’s safest to take the SAT or ACT. This will maximize your chance of getting into the best school possible, especially since most other students will be submitting their scores.
VCU SAT Requirements
Many schools say they have no SAT score cutoff, but the truth is that there is a hidden SAT requirement. This is based on the school’s average score.
Average SAT: 1180 (Old: 1630)
The average SAT score composite at VCU is a 1180 on the 1600 SAT scale.
On the old 2400 SAT, this corresponds to an average SAT score of 1630.
This score makes VCU Competitive for SAT test scores.
VCU SAT Score Analysis (New 1600 SAT)
The 25th percentile New SAT score is 1070, and the 75th percentile New SAT score is 1280. In other words, a 1070 on the New SAT places you below average, while a 1280 will move you up to above average.
Here’s the breakdown of new SAT scores by section:
VCU SAT Score Analysis (Old 2400 SAT)
The 25th percentile Old SAT score is 1470, and the 75th percentile SAT score is 1790. In other words, a 1470 on the Old SAT places you below average, while a 1790 puts you well above average.
Here’s the breakdown of old SAT scores by section:
SAT Score Choice Policy
The Score Choice policy at your school is an important part of your testing strategy.
VCU ACT Requirements
Just like for the SAT, VCU likely doesn’t have a hard ACT cutoff, but if you score too low, your application will get tossed in the trash.
Average ACT: 24
The average ACT score at VCU is 24. This score makes VCU Moderately Competitive for ACT scores.
The 25th percentile ACT score is 21, and the 75th percentile ACT score is 27.
Even though VCU likely says they have no minimum ACT requirement, if you apply with a 21 or below, you’ll have a harder time getting in, unless you have something else impressive in your application.
ACT Score Sending Policy
If you’re taking the ACT as opposed to the SAT, you have a huge advantage in how you send scores, and this dramatically affects your testing strategy.
Here it is: when you send ACT scores to colleges, you have absolute control over which tests you send. You could take 10 tests, and only send your highest one. This is unlike the SAT, where many schools require you to send all your tests ever taken.
This means that you have more chances than you think to improve your ACT score. To try to aim for the school’s ACT requirement of 21 and above, you should try to take the ACT as many times as you can. When you have the final score that you’re happy with, you can then send only that score to all your schools.
ACT Superscore Policy
By and large, most colleges do not superscore the ACT. (Superscore means that the school takes your best section scores from all the test dates you submit, and then combines them into the best possible composite score). Thus, most schools will just take your highest ACT score from a single sitting.
However, from our research, VCU is understood to superscore the ACT. We couldn’t confirm it directly from the school’s admissions website, but multiple sources confirm that the school does superscore the ACT. We recommend you call their admissions office directly for more information.
Superscoring is powerful to your testing strategy, and you need to make sure you plan your testing accordingly. Of all the scores that VCU receives, your application readers will consider your highest section scores across all ACT test dates you submit.
Click below to learn more about how superscoring critically affects your test strategy.
For example, say you submit the following 4 test scores:
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Vcu Application Essay Requirements
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Virginia Commonwealth University
Make it real.
VCU Office of Admissions blog
VCU is now part of the Common Application
by Christal Holmes, Assistant Director for Admissions Communications
Earlier in the summer, VCU became an exclusive member of the Common Application for new, first-time freshmen only. The application is available online only.
Transfer students or returning VCU students should visit our website for more information regarding their application process.
In addition to submitting the Common Application, freshman applicants must send official high school transcripts and either SAT or ACT scores. VCU also requires at least one letter of recommendation from a teacher, counselor, or other authority in order to complete your application package. When applicants complete the Common Application, they will be asked to submit recommender information. Recommenders will be sent an email on the applicants behalf requesting that they complete a recommendation.
Replacing the personal statement from our former application are essay prompts that all applicants must answer if they’re completing the Common Application. Applicants must choose one of the following topics and prepare an essay of no more than 650 words, using the prompt to inspire and structure responses:
Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
- Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn?
- Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
- Describe a place or environment where you are perfectly content. What do you do or experience there and why is it meaningful to you?
- Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.
In addition to answering one of the above essay topics, there are two additional VCU-specific writing prompts that all applicants are asked to complete:
- Describe a challenging situation you’ve faced. Briefly state the situation, how you responded and why, would you have done anything differently, has it affected or shaped who you are today?
- As you start your college career, what is your primary goal as a student and how have you prepared to meet this goal, how do you plan to succeed, how do you feel you will do at VCU?
Applicants to our School of the Arts programs should also refer to the SOTA admissions website for program-specific application requirements, such as portfolios or auditions: http://arts. vcu. edu/admissions/how-to-apply/undergraduate/.
Our application fee for this year is $50 and must be paid when submitting the Common Application online; we do not accept checks or money orders for the payment of application fees.
Our deadlines for applying will continue to be December 1 for scholarship consideration and January 15 for regular decision. We will continue to review applications on a rolling basis (no early action or early decision); however, applications received after the January 15 deadline will be reviewed on a space-available basis only.