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Clemson University – Admissions and Acceptance Rate

Mar 28, 2022

Are you planning to join an ideal college where you find excellent academics and other facilities? In pursuing admission to a perfect college, the quality of on-campus life can be just as important as academics. Clemson University (CU) provides just that! It is a University with optimum academic results and brilliant campus life. But, what are the Clemson University admission requirements? This quick guide deals with the admission requirements of Clemson University and compares the Clemson acceptance rates for 2020 and 2021.

But, before going to the Clemson admissions part, let us first know about the University and its campus life.


Overview: Clemson University – Campus Life

Clemson University is a public university established in 1889. Clemson University in South Carolina has a rigorous and nationally regarded academic program. It offers a wide range of popular major courses.

Clemson University has one of the happiest campuses in the country. Clemson’s campus is adjacent to scenic Lake Hartwell and a short drive from the Blue Ridge Mountains. Over 500 campus clubs and organizations help students get to know one another and get involved in their community. As a research-focused University, Clemson’s resources enable undergraduates to actively participate in research through the ‘Creative Inquiry’ program.


It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 20,868 students (fall 2020), a suburban setting, and a campus size of 17,000 acres. The academic calendar is semester-based. Clemson University has ranked #75 in National Universities in the Best Colleges 2022 edition.

It charges $15,120 for in-state tuition and fees and $37,712 for out-of-state tuition and fees.

Clemson University Admissions

Clemson University deserves serious consideration from students with strong academic performance to stand out in the admissions process. It offers robust programs in a wide range of majors, opportunities for research and work/study programs, and an array of scholarship opportunities. Students from South Carolina have a distinct advantage because the school has a higher proportion of in-state students.

Clemson introduced the Bridge to Clemson, a collaborative program with Tri-County Community College. This program helps achieve the goal of taking admission of more in-state students. 

Clemson University’s Rankings – 2022

Clemson University has achieved the following ranks in varied terms: 

  • #1 in South Carolina
  • #15 in Internships/Co-ops (Tie)
  • # 26 in Most Innovative Schools (Tie)
  • # 30 in Top Public Schools (Tie)
  • # 43 in Best Colleges for Veterans (Tie)
  • # 48 in Best Undergraduate Teaching (Tie)
  • # 54 in First-year Experiences (Tie)
  • # 75 in National Universities (Tie)

Clemson University Admission Requirements

The Clemson University admission standards are very high. However, the applicant competition is low. To get admission to Clemson University, you need a good SAT or ACT score. Half of Clemson University’s admitted students have an SAT score between 1210 and 1390 or an ACT score between 27 and 32. 


However, one-quarter of admitted applicants received higher scores than these ranges. On the other hand, the other quarter received lower scores than the former. CU typically accepts students who score an ‘A’ grade in high school. However, only 24% of the total admitted students get a chance to enroll at Clemson University. 

There are no Early Decision (ED) deadlines at Clemson University. The standard deadline is in May 2022 for submitting the admission application. Most Clemson scholarships require application by the priority deadline. 


Clemson University Acceptance Rate

Clemson University admissions are moderately selective, with a 61.9 (or 62) percent acceptance rate. With a 62% acceptance rate, CU ranks at #11 for the lowest rate of acceptance in South Carolina. The Clemson University acceptance rate in 2021 for the incoming first-year class was 51.3 percent. 

However, the acceptance rate for 2022 is projected to be 45.8 percent, the lowest in five years. This reflects the presence of an overall trend and an unusually high number of applicants.


Clemson Acceptance Rate: Out-Of-State Admissions

As Clemson is a public university, it strives to maintain a student ratio that is 65 percent in-state and 35 percent out-state. While out-of-state tuition generates more revenue for the CU, the primary goal is to maintain a 65-35 student body distribution profile. 

Separate figures for out-of-state Clemson acceptance rates are difficult to calculate. This is because the total number of applicants isn’t broken down by the state of residence. Out-of-state students are less likely to enroll than in-state students once accepted. 


Clemson University Admissions: GPA Score Requirements

Clemson’s admissions evaluation process places a high value on class rank and GPA. In fact, Clemson frequently reports high school records and GPAs as the cornerstone of their selection procedure.

The majority of accepted candidates have an unweighted GPA of at least 3.7. More than half of students are in the top 10 percent of their high school. The average High School GPA of CU is 4.18 on a scale of 4.0. This implies that CU accepts a typical high school ‘A’ grade.

Almost all admitted Freshmen are in the top half of their respective high school classes. Any student planning to attend Clemson should consult with their high school counseling department to ensure that they enroll in the most rigorous curriculum available. 

Clemson University Admissions: High School Class Rank

The top 10% of the high school graduating class makes up around 54% of Clemson University freshmen.

High School Class RankFreshmen Within Range
Bottom 25% of class1%
Bottom 50% of class3%
Top 50% of class97%
Top 25% of class84%
Top 10% of class54%

Clemson University Admissions: SAT Score Requirements

As Clemson’s applicant pool grew over the last decade, the average SAT and ACT scores of accepted students rose steadily. The majority of admitted students (88 percent of the 2021 freshman class) had SAT scores above 1200 on a 1600-point scale. The CU ranks at #2 for the highest average SAT composite score in South Carolina.

The usual SAT range for the students applying to CU is 1210-1390. Statistics suggest that 50% of students submit their SAT scores to get admission at Clemson. Clemson admissions statistics suggest that only the top 23% of performers in the SAT are usually admitted to the University. 

SAT Subject-wise PercentileEquivalent SAT Score
SAT Reading 25th610
SAT Reading 75th690
SAT Math 25th600
SAT Math 75th700
SAT Composite 25th1210
SAT Composite 75th1390
Average SAT Score1300

Clemson University Admissions: ACT Score Requirements

Half of the incoming ACT takers received scores ranging from 27 to 32 in the past years. In terms of standardized test scores, Clemson is one of the most selective state universities in the country. Clemson does not require essays or letters of recommendation. So, test scores and GPAs play an important role in applicants’ evaluations.

Clemson University’s ACT score range is 27-32. Around 50% of applicants submit their ACT scores for Clemson admissions.

ACT Subject-wise PercentileEquivalent ACT Score
ACT Reading 25th26
ACT Reading 75th34
ACT Math 25th25
ACT Math 75th30
ACT Composite 25th27
ACT Composite 75th32
Average ACT Score29
The standardized test requirement for Clemson first-year students in 2021 and 2022 has been waived. However, the school has stated that the decision to suspend mandatory SAT and ACT scores is only temporary. Students can still submit test results if they can take the tests in a safe environment (based on the COVID-19 outbreak).

Clemson University Admissions: Essay Requirements

Clemson’s admission applications do not require or recommend letters of recommendation. They do not even require or recommend the submission of an essay. However, students can include a personal statement in their application form. Even if some individual Clemson University’s admissions departments do not require it, most students who apply to more than one college take a resort of the essay section.

NOTE: Clemson’s Honors College application requires a more traditional essay and letters of recommendation. Honors College students have access to program-specific courses, research opportunities, and study abroad options.

Tips For Clemson University Admissions

  • Students who want to attend Clemson should concentrate on improving their standardized test scores.
  • Investing time in preparation for test day pays off in higher scores. 
  • Students can also benefit from taking the standardized tests multiple times because Clemson employs the “superscoring” policy. 
  • Taking advanced courses, AP classes, or participating in programs such as the International Baccalaureate (IB) can show that you can meet academic challenges with zeal.
Applications Deadline (Fall 2022)May 1, 2022
Application Fee$70

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1.) Are the Admission Requirements for Clemson University Strict?

Here is a quick table to help you find which scores are necessary to get admission into Clemson University –

Test ScoresCompulsory
High School RankConsidered but not required
RecommendationsNot required or recommended
Completion of College Preparatory ProgramCompulsory
Demonstration of competenciesNot required or recommended

Q2.) How Can I Increase My Chances of Obtaining Clemson University Admission?

Clemson admission is granted to 62% of students who apply. There is little competition for admission, and the college has very high admission standards. It is better to work hard and get a good GPA. 

clemson acceptance rate


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