Applying for fall 2017?

Here’s a bit of information that we hope helps you navigate the application process!

VCU is an exclusive member of the Common Application for new, first-time freshman applicants. The Common Application is accessible online only.

Transfer students and returning VCU students should visit our website for more information regarding their application process.

Along with submitting the Common Application, freshman applicants must submit official high school transcripts and either SAT or ACT scores (information about VCU’s score optional review policy can be found here). VCU also requires at least one letter of recommendation to complete application packages.

The Common Application’s Personal Essay is required. Applicants should write an essay, in their own voice, that clearly and concisely helps distinguish themselves — essays must be between 250-650 words. Applicants can choose one of the following writing prompts:

  • Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it.  If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
  • The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?
  • Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
  • Describe a problem you’ve solved or a problem you’d like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma — anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.
  • Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community or family.

In addition to answering one of the above essay topics, there are two additional VCU-specific writing prompts that all applicants are asked to complete:

  • Describe a challenging situation you’ve faced. Briefly state the situation, how you responded and why, would you have done anything differently, has it affected or shaped who you are today?
  • As you start your college career, what is your primary goal as a student and how have you prepared to meet this goal, how do you plan to succeed, how do you feel you will do at VCU?

Applicants to our School of the Arts programs should also refer to their website for program-specific application requirements, such as portfolios or auditions.

Our application fee for this year is $65 and must be paid when submitting the Common Application online.

January 15 is our regular decision deadline. Students who apply and submit all materials to complete their application packages by January 15 will receive a decision from our office in writing, via U.S. mail, by April 1. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis  throughout the fall and winter (note that we do not offer early action or early decision).

Our admissions staff is here to help answer any questions that you may have about our application process. We can be reached by phone at (800) 841-3638 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., and on Saturday between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. We can also be reached by e-mail at