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Tips for Writing a Successful Application to UC Riverside

Learn how to make your application stand out from the rest!
By Undergraduate Admissions |

If you’re interested in becoming a Highlander and enrolling at UC Riverside, there are a few easy things you can do to stand out from your peers. Our staff has compiled their best tips and tricks to making your application really show who you are and why you would be a good fit here.

In no particular order, some tips for a successful application:

  • Plan ahead and start your application early. Though you can already start writing your application, you have a window from Oct. 1 to Nov. 30 to submit your application so there’s no reason to not submit on time.

  • Use your resources. Your school may offer additional information and support to help you with your UC application. Your counselors, teachers, and even your family could be good resources you may want to use to finalize your application.

  • Use your transcripts when filling out your application. You’ll be asked to self-report information about your grades and completed courses, so use your transcripts to answer those questions.

  • Take your time and double-check your information. Once you submit your application, UCR and other UC campuses may begin reviewing your application immediately, so any changes you make after submitting may not be reviewed before an admissions decision is made.

  • Spend time on the Personal Insight Questions (PIQ). This section of the application is really where you get to shine. You’ll get eight questions to choose from and you must answer four of them, so choose the questions that relate to you most and that you can really speak to. You don’t want to pick a question that you don’t have much to say about. Each question is weighed equally, so spend an equal amount of effort on each one. The University of California has their own tips for writing your personal insight questions and even offers tips for each of the eight questions.

  • Think about the major(s) you may want to choose. UCR has more than 80 undergraduate majors to choose from and we know that can often be a tough decision. We’d recommend listing not only your primary interest, but also an alternate major, as UCR will consider admitting you into an alternate major should admission into your preferred major not be possible. Some majors are really popular and that may mean they’re competitive to get into, so listing an alternate major could increase your chances of being admitted. Learn about all your options for majors on our website.

  • After you submit, don’t stop there! Take a quick break, but don’t celebrate yet! Make sure to continue your dedication to your academic progress through the end of the academic year. After UCR reviews your application and if you’re admitted, the admission is conditional until we receive your final and official school transcripts. Once you have been admitted, you’ll need to request that your official transcripts be sent from your school(s) directly to UCR.

Hopefully this helps you as you’re getting started! You can start your application now and remember to submit by the Nov. 30 deadline to be considered. For more tips, watch How to Apply to UC Riverside.

To contact the office of Undergraduate Admissions with questions, visit their website.

How to Apply to UC Riverside

Follow along as UCR students walk you through the process of filling out an admission application.