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Occidental Admissions Information

Occidental College
Los Angeles, CA (map)


Occidental College was founded in 1887 in Los Angeles, California. Occidental is one of the few nationally recognized colleges of the liberal arts and sciences that is also located in a major city. The college is known to provide an interdisciplinary and intercultural education that balances classroom and learning while promoting a strong sense of community. The school’s small campus, rigorous academics, excellent faculty, and wide range of opportunities in L.A. all allow students to experience both a tight-knit, liberal arts community and a cosmopolitan metropolis. Occidental graduates find success in a number of areas that include science, law, medicine, business, politics, and government.

Located 8 miles from downtown Los Angeles, Occidental has a wide array opportunities for students including internships, dining, nightlife, and more. Within an hour's drive of campus are larger attractions such as Disneyland, Venice Beach, and Hollywood. Occidental offers over 100 organizations and clubs and a handful of sororities and fraternities. Students are also able to take classes at Caltech and Art Center.



Basic Info

Main Address: 1600 Campus Road
Los Angeles, CA 90041-3314
Phone Number: (323) 259-2500  
Website: www.oxy.edu  


Type of school: Private, liberal arts  
Type of school: Coed  
Setting: Urban  
Athletics: Division III, club, and intramural sports  
Degrees offered: Bachelor's, Master's  
Size of undergraduate student body: 2,089  
Percent out-of-state: 53%  
Percent international: 1.94%  
Female to Male ratio: 56:44  

Academic Life

Student to Professor ratio: 9:1  
Most popular majors: Economics
English Language and Literature
International Relations and Affairs
Special study programs: Cross-Registration
Double Major
Honors Program
Independent Study
ROTC (Air Force, Army)
Student-Designed Major
Study Abroad
United Nations Semester

Campus Life

Housing options:
Coed Housing
Fraternity/Sorority Housing
Women's Housing
Wellness housing (alcohol/drug/smoke-free)
Campus ministries
Concert band
Jazz band
Music ensembles
Radio station
Student government
Symphony orchestra
Choral groups
Film society
International students
Literary magazine
Musical theater
Student newspaper

Fun Facts

  • Voted #20 Best Campus Food.
  • Occidental's campus is featured in films such as Clueless, Made of Honor, and The Holiday.
  • Notable alumni include President Barack Obama (who enrolled in Occidental for two years before transferring to Columbia) and Ben Affleck.

Admissions Information

Occidental College admits 42% of its applicants, making it a selective, though not brutally competitive school. When reviewing applicants, admissions officials place the most weight on a student's extracurricular activities, volunteer work, work experience, and the rigor of his or her secondary school record.

These factors are followed by class rank, application essay, recommendations, standardized test scores, and GPA. Occidental also considers alumni relation, personal qualities, geographical residence, racial status, talent, whether the applicant is a first-generation college student, and the level of his or her interest in the college. Overall, primary consideration is given to academic credentials and qualities such as intellectual curiosity, out-of-class interests, and personal character.

Admissions address: 1600 Campus Road
Los Angeles, CA 90041
Phone number: (323) 259-2700  
Fax number: (323) 341-4875  
Admissions Website: http://www.oxy.edu/x109.xml  
Email: admission@oxy.edu  
Contact Person: Sally Richmond  
Number of first-year applications received: 5,924  
Percent of applicants admitted: 42%  

Application Information

Regular application deadline: January 10  
Early decision/action deadline: November 15 (Early Decision)  
Accepts the Common Application? Yes  
Admission requirements: Essay
Standardized test scores
2 Academic Teacher Evaluations
School Report
Mid Year Report
Final Report
Interview (optional)

Application Information

Standardized test scores required? SAT or ACT with writing
Recommended: SAT Subject Tests
Policy regarding SAT score-use: Highest Section Scores Across Test Dates  
Middle 50% Scores



% Who Submitted Scores
SAT Critical Reading
SAT Math
SAT Writing
ACT Composite

College Board code: 4581  
ACT code: 0350  
Learn more about other Small California schools:
Pitzer   Harvey Mudd   Claremont McKenna   Pomona  

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