How to Get Into Loyola Marymount University: Admissions Stats + Tips
- How Hard Is It to Get Into Loyola Marymount University?
- Average Academic Profile of Accepted Loyola Marymount University Students
- What is Loyola Marymount University Looking for?
- How to Improve Your Chances of Getting into Loyola Marymount University
- How to Apply to Loyola Marymount University
- Learn more about Loyola Marymount University
Loyola Marymount University (LMU) has the distinction of being the oldest Catholic university west of the Mississippi as well as one of the most prestigious Jesuit colleges in the U.S. One of the foundations of the Jesuit tradition is service to others, and here LMU shines—the Loyola Marymount University and Center for Service and Action (CSA) is home to ten Service Organizations, and its students put in more than 200,000 service hours annually, both with CSA and community-based organizations.
How Hard Is It to Get Into Loyola Marymount University?
Gaining admission to Loyola Marymount University is difficult. Loyola Marymount received 18,576 applicants for its Class of 2025 and accepted 9,314 students, giving the university an overall acceptance rate of 50%.
Loyola Marymount has an Early Decision admissions process through which 495 students applied to its Class of 2025 and 210 were accepted, for an Early Decision acceptance rate of 42%.
Loyola Marymount’s acceptance rate is low, but your actual chances of acceptance depend on the strength of your profile. CollegeVine can help you understand your odds of getting selected to attend LMU. Our free admissions calculator uses a variety of factors—like grades, test scores, and extracurriculars—to estimate your odds of acceptance and offer tips to improve your profile!
Average Academic Profile of Accepted Loyola Marymount University Students
The average high school GPA of Loyola Marymount’s Class of 2025 is 3.85. More than a third (35.7%) of its Class of 2025 graduated high school with a GPA of 4.0.
Loyola Marymount attracts top high school students—of LMU’s Class of 2025, 37% graduated high school in the top tenth of their class and 72% graduated in the top quarter of their class.
The middle 50% SAT score of Loyola Marymount University’s Class of 2025 is 1230-1380. The Class of 2025’s middle 50% ACT score is 27-31.
What is Loyola Marymount University Looking for?
Loyola Marymount is a Catholic University and while it doesn’t exclude students from other faiths, rather, it welcomes students of other beliefs to attend as a means to build mutual respect and understanding, along with deepening the appreciation of one’s own faith. That said, Catholic students are likely to find themselves most comfortable at LMU—the Jesuit tradition is at the foundation of a Loyola Marymount education and religious classes make up a part of LMU’s core requirements to graduate.
Academics are at the forefront of Loyola Marymount admissions—the university is in search of bright and ambitious students with track records of high academic performance. They are also in search of students who’ve demonstrated the Jesuit ideal of service. A history of volunteering and contributing to the community will make you stand out to LMU’s admissions officers.
Loyola Marymount University recommends applicants to have completed the following high school courses in preparation for the university’s rigorous academics:
- English: 4 years
- Foreign Language: 3 years
- Mathematics: 3 years
- Laboratory Science: 2 years
- Social Sciences: 3 years
- Academic Electives: 1 year
How Loyola Marymount University Evaluates Applications
According to their 2020-2021 Common Data Set, Loyola Marymount University considers the following factors “very important”:
These factors are “important”:
- Course rigor
These are “considered”:
- Class rank
- Test scores
- Extracurricular activities
- First generation
- Volunteer work
- Work experience
And these are “not considered”:
- Geographic location
- State residence
- Religious affiliation
- Racial/ethnic status
- Applicant interest
How to Improve Your Chances of Getting into Loyola Marymount University
1. Achieve at least a 3.85 average GPA while taking the most challenging classes available.
Loyola Marymount University considers just one factor “very important” to admissions decisions: GPA. The average GPA of Loyola Marymount’s Class of 2025 is 3.85. Selective colleges like LMU often use a tool known as the Academic Index to make admissions decisions. Academic Index is a summation of your entire academic performance by a single numerical score.
If you fail to meet a school’s Academic Index standard, you risk being viewed as unqualified and not having your application receive serious consideration. If your GPA is low but you’re early in your high school career, there is still time to raise it—check out our tips for increasing your GPA. If you’re a junior or senior, it’s harder to increase your GPA, which makes the easiest path to improving your Academic Index earning high test scores.
Loyola Marymount values good grades, but it’s also interested in students who push themselves academically. LMU considers course rigor “very important” to admissions. It’s common for applicants at competitive schools like LMU to have taken anywhere from five to eight AP classes in high school.
2. Write engaging essays.
Your ability to write is something that Loyola Marymount University values highly—it views it as “important” to admissions. More so, essays are an excellent space for you to separate yourself from other candidates and show a college why they want you on their campus.
LMU provides applicants with the opportunity to respond to two optional essay prompts, and if you’re serious about getting into Loyola Marymount, it’s highly recommended that you submit at least one. The best college essays are written in your personal voice, highlight your character and/or unique talent (both of which LMU views as “important” to admissions), and demonstrate how you’ll fit at a particular college.
For specific advice on how to compose the Loyola Marymount supplemental essays, read our article, “How to Write the Loyola Marymount University Essays 2021-2022.”
3. Aim for a 1380 SAT and 31 ACT.
Loyola Marymount “considers” standardized test scores when making admissions decisions. The middle 50% SAT/ACT scores of Loyola Marymount University’s Class of 2025 are 1230-1380/27-31. LMU will practice test-optional admissions from the fall 2021 semester through the fall 2022 semester.
In light of COVID-19 test-optional policies, CollegeVine recommends sitting for either the SAT or ACT if you can do so safely and submitting scores if they meet or exceed the 25th percentile of accepted students (1230/31). Students who submit test scores are accepted at higher rates than those who do not. You can get recommendations on whether or not you should apply test-optional using our free chancing engine.
If you are able to take the SAT or ACT, a tried-and-true method to improve your score is to sit for the test more than once. A study from the College Board, the organization that administers the SAT, found that two out of three students in the Class of 2018 increased their SAT score by taking the test more than once. Here are a few more resources to put you on the road to a wow-worthy standardized test score:
- How to Get a Perfect 1600 Score on the SAT
- How to Get a Perfect 36 Score on the ACT
- More SAT Info and Tips
- More ACT Info and Tips
4. Cultivate a strong portfolio of extracurriculars.
Loyola Marymount University “considers” extracurricular activities when making admissions decisions. Extracurricular activities are a great way to show admissions officers your interests outside of the classroom, and a strong extracurricular profile can give your application a significant boost. The most competitive applicants to schools like LMU have one or two well-developed interests or a highly developed interest known as a “spike”.
The four tiers of extracurriculars are a good method to understand how colleges weigh your activities outside of the classroom:
- Tier 1 activities are rare and demonstrate incredible accomplishment or leadership. Examples include winning a prestigious national award or attending a renowned merit-based summer program.
Tier 2 extracurriculars also exemplify accomplishment and leadership but are less impressive than those in Tier 1—getting named to an all-state team or serving as student body president, for example.
Tier 3 activities are better for calling attention to interests that aren’t identifiable in other parts of your application. This tier includes activities like captaining a varsity sport or serving as treasurer of your class.
- Tier 4 activities are those that you participate in but lack distinction, such as playing an instrument, membership in a club, and volunteerism.
5. Get a really great recommendation.
Loyola Marymount “considers” recommendations when making admissions decisions. LMU requires one letter but suggests submitting two—a letter from a teacher as well as a letter from your high school counselor or principal.
The approach you take to getting a teacher recommendation can affect its quality and ultimately the influence it has over admissions committees. Ask a teacher who knows you well and thinks highly of you, and leave them plenty of time to compose your recommendation. For other tips to get a great recommendation check out our article, “9 Rules For Requesting Letters of Recommendation from Teachers.”
6. Apply Early Decision.
Loyola Marymount University has four admissions processes: Early Decision (ED), Early Decision II (ED II), Early Action (EA), and regular decision. Typically, applying Early Decision can substantially improve your odds of acceptance, but this wasn’t the case in LMU’s 2020-2021 admissions cycle—the overall acceptance rate was 50% and the Early Decision acceptance rate was 42%.
Applying through either of the Early Decision processes is binding, which means you’re committed to attending LMU if accepted when you apply through them. Since there is no advantage to applying ED or ED II, this path is only recommended for students who are 100% positive that they want to attend Loyola Marymount.
How to Apply to Loyola Marymount University
Early Decision II
Loyola Marymount University uses the Common Application. Other requirements include:
- Recommendation letter(s)
- Audition/Portfolio for those applying to the following programs: Animation, Production (Film and Television), Theatre Arts, Dance, and Music
Other optional materials include:
- Writing supplement
- SAT/ACT scores
- Portfolio (Studio Arts program only)
Learn more about Loyola Marymount University
Interested in learning more about Loyola Marymount? Check out these other informative articles:
- What Does it Cost to Attend Loyola Marymount University?
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Want to know your chances at Loyola Marymount? Calculate your chances for free right now.