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University of California - Santa Cruz Data & Information Overview

194 awards Ranking Badges
Great Price Value for Your Money
59% Acceptance Rate
This overview covers the essential stats on University of California - Santa Cruz, including its rankings, majors, diversity, and more.
If you’re interested in learning more about a particular stat, just click on its tile to go to a new page that covers the topic more in-depth. Also, you can jump to any section of this page by clicking one of the links below.

How Well Is University of California - Santa Cruz Ranked?

#102 Best Colleges in Nation
#19 Best Colleges in CA
Education Highest Ranked Major
Quality Badge

2024 Rankings

In its yearly rankings, College Factual analyzes over 2,000 colleges and universities to determine which ones are the best in a variety of categories, such as overall value, quality, diversity, which schools are the best for each major, and much more.

University of California - Santa Cruz was awarded 194 badges in the 2024 rankings. The highest ranked major at the school is education.

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Overall Quality

According to College Factual's 2024 analysis, UC Santa Cruz is ranked #102 out of 2,217 schools in the nation that were analyzed for overall quality. This puts it in the top 5% of all schools in the nation. This is an improvement over the previous year, when UC Santa Cruz held the #135 spot on the Best Overall Colleges list.

Out of the 168 colleges in California, UC Santa Cruz is ranked at #19.

See all of the rankings for University of California - Santa Cruz.

Is It Hard to Get Into UC Santa Cruz?

59% Acceptance Rate
57% Of Accepted Are Women

Acceptance Rate

University of California - Santa Cruz has an acceptance rate of 59%, which means the school is serious about who it admits. Take your time in putting together a strong application that highlights why you are a good fit for UC Santa Cruz.

Learn more about University of California - Santa Cruz admissions.

University of California - Santa Cruz Faculty

24 to 1 Student to Faculty
75% Full Time Teachers

Student to Faculty Ratio

At University of California - Santa Cruz, the student to faculty ratio is 24 to 1. Compared to the national average of 15 to 1, this is somewhat high. This could mean that class sizes may be larger than they are at other colleges or universities or that professors may be required to teach more classes.

Percent of Full-Time Faculty

When estimating how much access students will have to their teachers, some people like to look at what percentage of faculty members are full time. This is because part-time teachers may not have as much time to spend on campus as their full-time counterparts.

The full-time faculty percentage at University of California - Santa Cruz is 75%. This is higher than the national average of 47%.

Full-Time Faculty Percent  75 out of 100

Retention and Graduation Rates at University of California - Santa Cruz

89% Freshmen Retention
52% On-Time Graduation Rate

Freshmen Retention Rate

University of California - Santa Cruz has a freshmen retention rate of 89%. That's a good sign that full-time students like the school and their professors enough to want to stick around for another year. It's also a sign that the admissions team did a good job in choosing applicants who were a good fit for the school.

Freshmen Retention Rate  89 out of 100

Graduation Rate

The on-time graduation rate for someone pursuing a bachelor's degree is typically four years. This rate at UC Santa Cruz for first-time, full-time students is 52%, which is better than the national average of 33.3%.

On-Time Graduation Rate  52 out of 100

Find out more about the retention and graduation rates at University of California - Santa Cruz.

University of California - Santa Cruz Undergraduate Student Diversity

16,521 Full-Time Undergraduates
60.9% Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
47.4% Percent Women

During the 2017-2018 academic year, there were 17,207 undergraduates at UC Santa Cruz with 16,521 being full-time and 686 being part-time.

How Much Does University of California - Santa Cruz Cost?

$17,930 Net Price
21% Take Out Loans
$22,160 Total Student Loans
The overall average net price of UC Santa Cruz is $17,930. The affordability of the school largely depends on your financial need since net price varies by income group. See the table below for the net price for different income groups.

Net Price by Income Group for UC Santa Cruz

$0-30 K $30K-48K $48-75 $75-110K $110K +
$11,038 $12,049 $15,567 $22,380 $31,701

The net price is calculated by adding tuition, room, board and other costs and subtracting financial aid.Note that the net price is typically less than the published for a school. For more information on the sticker price of UC Santa Cruz, see our tuition and fees and room and board pages.

Student Loan Debt

While almost two-thirds of students nationwide take out loans to pay for college, the percentage may be quite different for the school you plan on attending. At UC Santa Cruz, approximately 21% of students took out student loans averaging $5,540 a year. That adds up to $22,160 over four years for those students.

The student loan default rate at UC Santa Cruz is 2.9%. This is significantly lower than the national default rate of 10.1%, which is a good sign that you'll be able to pay back your student loans.

Get more details about paying for University of California - Santa Cruz.

How Much Money Do UC Santa Cruz Graduates Make?

$58,112 Avg Salary of Grads
High Earnings Boost
Although some majors pay more than others, students who graduate from UC Santa Cruz with a bachelor's degree go on to jobs where they make an average salary of $58,112 in their early years. That's great news for UC Santa Cruz students since it is 37% more than the average college graduate's salary of $42,485 per year.


See which majors at University of California - Santa Cruz make the most money.

Location of University of California - Santa Cruz

California State
16,521 Full-Time Undergraduates
Small City Campus Setting
University of California - Santa Cruz is a public institution situated in Santa Cruz, California. The location of UC Santa Cruz is great for students who prefer living in an urban area.

Get more details about the location of University of California - Santa Cruz.


Contact details for UC Santa Cruz are given below.

Contact Details
Address: 1156 High St, Santa Cruz, CA 95064-1011
Phone: 831-459-0111

University of California - Santa Cruz Majors

60 Majors With Completions
5,391 Undergraduate Degrees
590 Graduate Degrees
During the most recent year for which we have data, students from 60 majors graduated from University of California - Santa Cruz. Of these students, 5,391 received undergraduate degrees and 590 graduated with a master's or doctor's degree. The following table lists the most popular undergraduate majors along with the average salary graduates from those majors make.

Most Popular Majors Bachelor’s Degrees Average Salary of Graduates
Computer Science 670 $63,040
General Psychology 510 $27,446
Cell Biology & Anatomical Sciences 297 $34,270
Business/Managerial Economics 291 $46,826
Sociology 261 $27,765
Linguistics & Comparative Literature 216 $23,717
Natural Resources Conservation 208 $28,054
General Biology 204 $29,134
Political Science & Government 196 $29,390
Film, Video & Photographic Arts 177 $24,155

Learn more about the majors offered at University of California - Santa Cruz along with which ones have the highest average starting salaries.

Online Learning at UC Santa Cruz

86% Take At Least One Class Online
29% Take All Classes Online

Online courses area a great option for busy, working students as well as for those who have scheduling conflicts and want to study on their own time. As time goes by, expect to see more and more online learning options become available.

In 2020-2021, 17,161 students took at least one online class at University of California - Santa Cruz. This is a decrease from the 18,592 students who took online classes the previous year.

Year Took at Least One Online Class Took All Classes Online
2020-2021 17,161 5,761
2019-2020 18,592 16,945
2018-2019 748 3
2017-2018 853 0
2016-2017 1,323 0

Learn more about online learning at University of California - Santa Cruz.

If you’re considering University of California - Santa Cruz, here are some more schools you may be interested in knowing more about.

Curious on how these schools stack up against UC Santa Cruz? Pit them head to head with College Combat, our free interactive tool that lets you compare college on the features that matter most to you!

Notes and References


*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.


More about our data sources and methodologies.

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