Prospective Students

Jump to: Freshman admissions - Upperclass admissions - Transfer admissions 

Freshman admissions

The information which follows is for prospective students applying for admission during Fall 2020.

Pitt Honors is competitive. We accept about 600 students each year into Pitt Honors and the Honors Joint Degree program. 

Prospective students may apply to Pitt Honors through the regular University of Pittsburgh application process, Common App, or Coalition App.

If you choose to apply, you'll be asked to answer the following essay question:

If you could change anything in the world, what would it be? Explain why and how you would change it. Responses should be stated in 500 words or less.

Admitted students get:

  • Admission into the Honors Joint Degree program.
  • A designation on your transcript as soon as you're admitted, and an Honors-designated degree (BA-H or BS-H) from your academic school upon completion of the Honors Joints Degree requirements.
  • Priority course registration beginning your first spring term.
  • A guaranteed spot in first-year Honors housing, although it is not required for all admitted Honors students. Students must make their housing deposit and complete their housing contract by May 1 to ensure this guarantee.
  • A flexible Pitt Honors experience, you will also get an assigned Honors Scholar-Mentor to help you tailor the most advantageous path for your interests.​

The deadline for Pitt Honors freshman application is December 1. 

Things to consider: 

  • Although we don’t have minimum SAT/ACT requirements, our average student has a 1450-1500 SAT and/or 32-33 ACT as well as a 3.80 unweighted GPA.
  • Unlike many other Honors colleges, most of our programs (like our fellowships and courses) are open to all undergraduates—so you can still participate if you aren't admitted to the degree program. If you don't get in your first year, you can also re-apply at the end of your freshman or sophomore year.
  • The 2020 Pitt Honors application will be test (SAT/ACT) optional.

Applicants will be notified of their Honors College application decision on February 1.

Apply now »


Pitt Honors Virtual Info Sessions

Virtual information sessions are offered weekly with dates and times found on the Pitt Admissions website. Register here (under the Daily Visit Options registration menu.)

Interested in a 1-on-1 meeting? Contact our Manager of Recruitment, Matt Schultz, at

You can also browse our FAQ about first-year admissions. 




Upperclass admissions

Pitt Honors admits a limited number of upperclass Pitt students into its degree program. 

Upperclassmen (including transfers from a regional campus) must have a minimum GPA of 3.50, and a minimum of 2 semesters (24 credits). Applicants are required to complete two essay prompts which can be found here and submit a letter of recommendation from an instructor or academic advisor. Applications for upperclassmen open in the spring for the following academic year. Follow the link below to begin the application process.

This year’s application will open in January 2021.



Transfer admissions

Transfer students from other institutions can apply for the Pitt Honors degree program as part of their regular application to Pitt. The application will consider your academic performance, as well as your answers to additional essay questions about your interest in working for the public good, and intellectual curiosity.