The Catholic University Acceptance Rate and How to get in Easily

The Catholic University of America (CUA) offers a personal and human-scale approach to classic liberal arts education. It is one of the unique catholic universities in the US and we’ve provided everything you need to know about the Catholic University acceptance rate.

The Catholic University is a national research university in the Catholic intellectual tradition at the Heart of the U.S Capital. You will be part of a global community of students, scholars, and faculty who are determined to uncover, preserve and inculcate truth in all forms, with specific joys and rewards achieved from exploring and gaining virtue and intellect in the full university life.

Undergraduate and graduate students from all religions around the globe are welcomed to CUA. A Metrorail stop is located next to campus, so you are within reach of lots of Washington, D.C. attractions. Keep reading to know about the Catholic University of America, its history, academics, acceptance rate, and how to get in easily.

The Catholic University Acceptance Rate and How to get in Easily

About Catholic University

The Catholic University of America (CUA) is a private research university founded by U.S. Catholic bishops in Washington, D.C. It is an authoritarian university of the Catholic Church in the US and the only Catholic institution of higher education. It was founded in 1887 as a graduate and research center after Pope Leo XIII approved it. In 1904, the university began offering undergraduate education, and is classified as an “R2: Doctoral Universities – High research activity”.

Its campus is next to the Brookland neighborhood, called “Little Rome”, which has 60 Catholic institutions, including the Dominican House of Studies, Trinity Washington University, Archbishop Carroll High School, and the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

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History

On November 13, 1889, the university was officially opened and the curriculum included English literature, lectures in moral and mental philosophy, the sacred scriptures, and the several branches of theology. Towards the end of the second term, canon law lectures were added. In 1889, the first students graduated and by 1900, the university was among the 14 colleges that formed the Association of American Universities and offered doctorate programs

In 1904, an undergraduate program was added. Frank Kuntz was the first president of the undergraduate class, and the Catholic University of America Press published his memoir during that period.  An annual award named Kuntz is also given by the university.

In 1894, Bishop and Rector Thomas J. Shahan gave a speech to the Ancient Order of Hibernians where he promoted Irish independence in culture, language, and politics. This resulted in a chair of Gaelic Languages and Literature being endowed by the Hibernians at the university. Harvard University was the only university with a similar position at the time, and this attracted William Butler of Yeats’s attention.

In the 1866 Second Plenary Council of Baltimore, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops first discussed the importance of a national Catholic university. On January 26, 1885, at the Third Plenary Council, the name chosen by the bishops for the institution was The Catholic University of America.

In 1882, Bishop John Lancaster Spalding traveled to Rome to get Pope Leo XIII’s support for CUA, at the same time persuading Mary Gwendoline Caldwell, his family friend to pledge $300,000 to establish the university. On April 10, 1887, a letter was sent to Pope Leo XIII granting permission to establish the university. On March 7, 1889, the encyclical Magni Nobis was issued by the Pope, granting the university its charter. The university was established with Catholicism instruction and human nature combined at the graduate level. By developing new knowledge and new leaders, the university’s goal was to strengthen and grow Catholicism in the United States.

In 1887, CUA was incorporated on 66 acres (27 ha) of land adjacent to the Old Soldiers Home. President Grover Cleveland attended the ceremony for the laying of the Divinity Hall cornerstone, now known as Caldwell Hall, on May 24, 1888, as well as the U.S. Cabinet and members of Congress.

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The presence of CUA attracted other Catholic religious orders, colleges, and national service organizations to the area. From 1900 to 1940, over 50 international Catholic institutions owned or rented property in neighboring Brookland. In the post-World War II years, there was a dramatic expansion in the university enrollment, because of the veterans making use of the G.I. Bill to finish college education. In the 21st century, there were over 6,000 students in the university from all 50 states and internationally.

In 2018 the university had some challenges as administrators struggled to reduce a $3.5 million deficit. The draft plan was objected to by some faculty and voted “no confidence” in the provost and president.

On June 30, 2022, John Garvey stepped down as President of Catholic University.

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Academics

CUA’s programs focus on professional education, liberal arts, and personal development. Politics is one of the popular majors. If you are a creative type, there’s a major offered by Benjamin T. Rome School of Music, Drama, and Art. The school is closely connected with Catholic organizations and the Catholic Church. Each year, the American Cardinals Dinner is put on by the residential U.S. cardinals to raise scholarship funds. The university has worked with the Knights of Columbus; its basilica and law school are committed to the support and involvement of the Knights.

Catholic University 12 schools include:

  • School of Architecture and Planning
  • School of Arts and Sciences
  • Tim and Steph Busch School of Business
  • School of Canon Law
  • School of Engineering
  • Columbus School of Law
  • Benjamin T. Rome School of Music, Drama, and Art
  • Conway School of Nursing
  • School of Philosophy
  • Metropolitan School of Professional Studies
  • National Catholic School of Social Service
  • School of Theology and Religious Studies

There are also 21 research centers and facilities which served as home to the Catholic University of America Press, founded in 1939. Doctor of Philosophy degrees in 66 programs is offered by the 12 schools as well as Master’s Degrees in 103 programs. Six schools offer Undergraduate degrees through 72 programs in arts and sciences, architecture and planning, music, engineering, nursing, and philosophy.

Undergraduates combine courses in a major field of study with liberal arts curriculum in arts and sciences. The Metropolitan School offers programs for adults who want to take part in continuing education, earn baccalaureate degrees or enroll in certificate programs on a part-time basis. Catholic University is the only U.S. university with an ecclesiastical canon law faculty (founded by the Holy See in 1923). It is among the few U.S. universities with ecclesiastical faculties of sacred theology and philosophy. The university seminary and the Theological College prepare men for the priesthood. The School of Theology and Religious Studies is part of the Washington Theological Consortium.

On January 8, 2013, the Catholic University of America announced the creation of a School of Business and Economics. Previously housed as the Department of Business and Economics in the School of Arts and Sciences, the UAC board of trustees voted in December 2012 to agree to the establishment of the school which commenced on January 1, 2013, after a three-year process of evaluation, discernment, and planning. In the fall of 2013, the School of Information Science and Library became a department of the School of Arts and Sciences, hence the reason for the university’s present composition.

Ninety-eight percent of full-time faculty have doctoral degrees and 68% teach undergraduates. 59% of the full-time faculty are Catholic. In 2018, every tenure and tenured track biology professor received funding from the National Institutes of Health.

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CUA was among the fourteen founding members of the Association of American Universities. However, in 2002, it ceased being a member because of a conflict with its mission or goal. In addition, the Cardinal Newman Society in The Newman Guide recommends the university when choosing a Catholic College. The Catholic University of America is regarded as one of the 25 most underrated colleges in the United States. 

Law school

In 1954, Columbus University and the CUA law program merged together to become the Columbus School of Law of the Catholic University of America. This happened after law schools that were not affiliated with a university were challenged by the American Bar Association in 1951. The law school was the first professional school of the Catholic University of America.

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Admission Requirements

The important requirement you should consider to build a strong application that will get you into the Catholic University of America (CUA) easily is:

  • GPA requirements
  • Testing requirements e.g SAT and ACT 
  • Application requirements

Keep reading to know the admission requirements based on the Catholic university acceptance rate. 

The acceptance rate is the first criteria you must consider before applying to CUA. You will get to know how competitive the university is and the requirements you must meet.

The Catholic University Acceptance rate

The acceptance rate is 83.7%. Out of 100 applicants, 84 are selected.

The school admission process is lightly competitive. Yet, you must meet the Catholic University of America minimum GPA and SAT/ACT scores to stand a better chance of getting in.

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The Catholic University GPA Requirements

GPA

Catholic University of America’s average GPA is 3.46.  The school is quite competitive for GPAs.

If you get a GPA of 3.72, you are expected to be above average in your high school class, with a combination of A’s and B’s, and very few C’s in your high school transcripts.

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The Catholic University Acceptance Rate

SAT and ACT Requirements

The Catholic University of America has requirements for standardizing tests. SAT or ACT scores are required. 

Before you submit an application to CUA, you must take either the SAT or ACT test and perform well in the tests to have a strong application.

DONT-MISS: SAT Score Calculator – Raw and Scaled

The Catholic University SAT Requirements

The average SAT score composite is 1230 on the 1600 SAT scale. Therefore, the Catholic University of America is competitive in SAT scores.

The New SAT 25th percentile score is 1140, while the New SAT 75th percentile score is 1320. What this means is that a New SAT score of 1140 places you below average, while 1320 places you up above average.

Below is the section breakdown of the Catholic University’s new SAT scores:

SectionAverage25th Percentile75th Percentile
Math610560660
Reading + Writing620580660
Composite123011401320

Catholic University Acceptance Rate

The Catholic University ACT Requirements

Just like for the SAT, there’s no known hard ACT cutoff mark based on the Catholic University acceptance rate. However, if your score is low, you won’t stand a chance of being admitted.

The average ACT score at the Catholic University of America is 27. This score makes the Catholic University of America quite Competitive for ACT scores. The 25th percentile ACT score is 24, and the 75th percentile ACT score is 30.

If your ACT score is below 24, you won’t stand a chance of getting in.

Therefore, you should prepare for the ACT test and retake it if your ACT score is currently below 24.  Raising your score will boost your chances of getting into the Catholic University of America.

ACT Score Sending Policy

If you’re taking the ACT, you have complete control over which ACT scores you can send to CUA. You can take up to 10 tests, and send only your highest one.

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This means that you have various chances to improve your ACT score. Therefore we recommend you take the ACT as many times as you can and aim for Catholic University’s ACT requirement of 24 and above. When you have the final score that meets or exceeds the average required ACT score, you can then send only that score to CUA.

The Catholic University Acceptance Rate

SAT/ACT Writing Section Requirements

The Catholic University of America requires an optional essay section for the SAT and ACT.

It is recommended that you take the SAT Essay/ACT Writing section because it will make your application stronger.

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SAT Subject Test Requirements

6 months prior, double-check whether the Catholic University of America requires SAT subject tests before applying just to be sure and have enough time to prepare for the test.

Because of how lightly competitive Catholic University is, having a strong academic performance increases your chance of getting admission. If you score an 1140 SAT or a 24 ACT or above, then you can be sure of admission.

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Conclusion

The Catholic University of America (CUA) is an authoritarian private research university founded by U.S. Catholic bishops in Washington, D.C. It is a university of the Catholic Church in the US and the only Catholic institution of higher education. Its campus is next to “Little Rome”, a Brookland neighborhood, with 60 Catholic institutions, including the Dominican House of Studies, Trinity Washington University, Archbishop Carroll High School, and the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.

CUA’s programs focus on professional education, liberal arts, and personal development. Politics is one of the popular majors. If you are a creative type, there’s a major offered by Benjamin T. Rome School of Music, Drama, and Art. The school is closely connected with Catholic organizations and the Catholic Church. 

The Catholic university acceptance rate is 83.7%. You must meet the Catholic University of America minimum GPA and SAT/ACT scores to stand a better chance of getting in.

FAQs on the Catholic University Acceptance Rate and How to get in Easily 

1. What GPA do you need for a Catholic university?

Catholic University of America’s average GPA is 3.46.  The school is quite competitive for GPAs.
If you get a GPA of 3.72, you are expected to be above average in your high school class, with a combination of A’s and B’s, and very few C’s in your high school transcripts.

2. Is Catholic university hard to get into?

Admission into the Catholic University of America admissions is lightly selective as the school has an acceptance rate of 82% and an early acceptance rate of 88.6%. Half the applicants admitted have an SAT score between 1130 and 1325 or an ACT score of 23 and 30.

3. Is Catholic university prestigious?

The Catholic University of America is an authoritarian university of the Catholic Church in the US and the only Catholic institution of higher education. It was founded as a graduate and research center after Pope Leo XIII approved it. In 1904, the university was classified as an “R2: Doctoral Universities – High research activity”.

4. What is Catholic University best known for?

CUA’s programs focus on professional education, liberal arts, and personal development. Politics is one of the popular majors. If you are a creative type, there’s a major offered by Benjamin T. Rome School of Music, Drama, and Art. The school is closely connected with Catholic organizations and the Catholic Church.

5. What are CUA ACT requirements?

The average ACT score at the Catholic University of America is 27. This score makes the Catholic University of America quite Competitive for ACT scores. The 25th percentile ACT score is 24, and the 75th percentile ACT score is 30. 

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