2021-2022 Catalog

Admission Requirements

Occidental is highly selective in the admission of students. The Admission Committee seeks students with strong academic preparation and personal characteristics who demonstrate motivation, accomplishment, involvement, energy, and commitment. Rigor of coursework, grades, writing, recommendations, extracurricular activities, and test scores are all taken into consideration in selecting the members of the first-year class. Interviews are optional but recommended.

While there is no specific requirement for the high school course of study, it is recommended that applicants take five academic subjects each year, including advanced or honors courses when available. The emphasis in each academic area will vary with individual interests and goals, but a solid preparation in high school should include four years of English composition and literature, three to four years of foreign language, three to four years of mathematics (four years for students interested in science), three to four years of social studies, and three to four years of science—including one year each of biology, chemistry, and physics. Regular Decision applications for admission into the first-year class are due by January 10.

Students for whom Occidental is their first-choice college may apply under one of two binding Early Decision (ED) programs. ED I applications are due November 15, with decisions mailed within 4-5 weeks, and ED II applications are due January 1, with decisions also mailed within 4-5 weeks.

Transfer applications for the fall semester should be submitted by April 1, and for the spring semester by November 1. Transfer applicants for the fall semester who require a decision before May 15 should plan to apply by the March 1 transfer "priority" deadline. International transfer applications are accepted for fall semester only, and should be submitted by March 1.

Detailed information on the College, its curriculum and programs, and admission and financial assistance is included in published materials available from the Office of Admission and online at www.oxy.edu/admission-aid.

First-year and transfer candidates may apply to the College using the Common Application. Prospective students are encouraged to experience Occidental firsthand by visiting the College. It is possible to attend an information session, tour the campus, and visit classes. Although interviews are not required, they are strongly recommended. For more information, call (323) 259-2700, email admission@oxy.edu, or contact: Office of Admission, Occidental College, 1600 Campus Road, Los Angeles, CA 90041.