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Undergraduate Admission

First Year Application Instructions

» How to Apply - First Year Students

Please review the information below for application deadlines, options and instructions for applying to Chapman University.

To receive application updates, be sure to stay in touch.

First Year Application Deadlines

Spring 2024 Deadline

All applications to start in the spring are due by October 15, 2023. Applications received after October 15 will be considered on a space-available basis.

Fall 2024 Deadlines

November 1, 2023 is the deadline for:

January 15, 2024 is the Regular Decision deadline for all programs except Film and Television Production, which has a November 1 Regular Decision deadline.

Applications received after the listed dates will be considered late and reviewed on a space-available basis.

Application Options

There are three options for applying to Chapman:

1) Early Action (EA) is a non-binding early deadline. Decision notifications are sent in late December for most programs, and are then sent on a rolling basis through the beginning of February.

  • EA applications are due November 1, 2023.
  • EA applicants may apply to other Early Action colleges.
  • Binding Early Decision and Early Decision II program applicants to other schools can also apply Early Action to Chapman.

2) Early Decision (ED) is a binding early deadline. Decision notifications are sent in late December. This option is appropriate only if you are sure Chapman is your first choice.

  • ED applications are due November 1, 2023.
  • Binding means you must commit to enroll at Chapman if admitted to your first-choice major. (You will not need to commit to enroll if you are admitted to your second-choice major.)
  • ED applicants looking to apply for need-based financial aid must submit their FAFSA.
  • ED applicants cannot apply Early Decision to other institutions.
  • ED applicants can apply EA to other colleges, but must withdraw those applications if admitted to Chapman.

3) Regular Decision (RD) is a non-binding deadline. Decision notification for RD is in mid-March.

  • RD applications are due January 15, 2024.
  • RD applicants may apply ED or EA to other institutions.You can view complete spring and fall deadlines for RD below, under “First Year Application Deadlines."

Application Steps and Requirements

Follow the steps below to apply as a first-year student to Chapman University. Please only submit the university’s required documents.

Step 1: Complete and submit The Common App and Chapman University Questions.

  • Chapman University Questions are submitted along with your Common App. You can learn more about Chapman University Questions on our Application Tips page.
  • Chapman University has a test-optional admission process. This means most applicants can choose if they want their SAT or ACT scores reviewed with their application. For those submitting scores, we will accept:
    • Self-reported scores via the Common App’s “Testing” section. For help self-reporting your scores, see our How to Self-Report Your SAT/ACT Scores guide.
    • Official scores sent directly from College Board or ACT. If you wish to send official scores directly from CollegeBoard or ACT, Chapman’s Testing Code for the SAT is 4047; for the ACT it is 0210. Check out our How to Send Your SAT/ACT Scores page for info on all the ways you can send your scores.

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Step 2: Submit letter(s) of recommendation via the Common App

  • Request at least one letter of recommendation from one of your teachers through the "Recommender" section on the Common App.
  • Chapman only requires one letter of recommendation, but will review up to two letters.
  • If you are applying to a talent major and need to submit a Creative Supplement, we recommend submitting an additional letter through the Common App (two letters total), with one from someone that can speak to your creative abilities. While this isn't required, it is highly encouraged.


Step 3: Submit official transcripts

  • Ask your counselor (or school official) to submit your official high school transcripts. If you have attended multiple high schools, you will need to submit individual transcripts for each institution attended.
  • If you have taken college coursework during high school, you should request those official transcripts be sent to Chapman.


Step 4: Submit the Common App School Report form

Ask your counselor (or school official) to submit the Common App School Report form. Your counselor may also submit an attached letter of recommendation, although it is not required.


Step 5: Pay the application fee or submit a Fee Waiver Request

  • You must submit the $70 non-refundable application fee via the Common App, or select the fee waiver option if you meet the Common App fee waiver guidelines.
  • Your high school counselor must approve your fee waiver request online via the Common App, or submit a request (with your Common Application ID number) by mail or via email to admit@chapman.edu. We require fee waiver approval prior to the review of your application. 


Step 6: Submit the Creative Supplement/department requirements (for specific majors)

Applicants to academic majors within the colleges/departments below must also submit a Creative Supplement:

  • College of Performing Arts
  • Dodge College of Film and Media Arts
  • Department of Art (excluding Art History)

You can only submit your Creative Supplement after submitting your Common App. Visit our Creative Supplement page for more information.

Our Accelerated Pre-Pharmacy Experience (APEx) Program also has additional requirements. View the application information on the Pre-Pharmacy website for specific details.

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Virtual How to Apply Information Sessions

Two students in an acting classApplicants to our College of Performing Arts and Dodge College of Film & Media Arts must submit an application and a Creative Supplement.

You can learn more about this process at one of our upcoming "How to Apply" Information Sessions (note that Screen Acting applicants should attend the CoPA session):

If you have any questions, contact us at visit@chapman.edu.

Fall 2024 Notification Timelines

First-year applicants to Fall 2024 should expect decisions based on their major and notification plan, though timeline is subject to change:

  • All Early Decision applicants: mid-December
  • Early Action Film & Television Production applicants: mid-February
  • Early Action College of Performing Arts Program applicants: notifications begin in late December and are released through mid-March
  • All other Early Action applicants: mid-December to mid-January
  • Regular Decision applicants: mid-March
Admission Decisions Explained
First-year fall applicants will receive one of six different decisions. Learn about the various options on our Admission Decisions Explained page.

Applying for Financial Aid

Please visit our Applying for Financial Aid page for more information on submitting your FAFSA and financing your Chapman education.


Recommended Classes for High School Students

Recommended classes for students (similar to A-G requirements for University of California/California State University schools):

  • English: 4 years
  • Math: 3-4 years (business and science majors should take classes through pre-calculus, at a minimum, and aim to take 4 full years of math as major preparation)
  • Science: 2-3 years (science majors should try to take 3-4 years of science as major preparation; at least two courses should be a lab science)
  • History/Social Science: 2-3 years
  • Foreign Language: 3-4 years
  • Arts/Electives: 2-3 years

These courses can make you a stronger candidate for admission at Chapman University. However, if these recommendations are not completed, you will not be disqualified for admission. We would like to see that your high school curriculum and course rigor supports the major to which you have applied. You will want to check with other institutions to which you are applying to check if their recommended/required courses are different.


How We Can Help

We are happy to help as you consider Chapman and work on your application:

  • Introduce yourself to your counselor. They would love to hear from you and can answer many of your questions.
  • Visit Chapman. We offer ways to connect on campus or from wherever you are.
  • Meet us at your high school. Our counselors will be making virtual high school visits throughout the fall. If we're coming to your school, we'll send you an invite (as long as you've joined our interest list).

You can also use our program finder to help find the right major/minors for you.


Chapman University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, disability, genetic information, medical condition, marital status, religion, military status, or veteran’s status in its admissions policies or administration of its educational programs, including scholarship and loan programs, under Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 and under the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Questions, concerns, or complaints may be directed to Colleen Wood, Title IX Coordinator at titleix@chapman.edu, phone (714) 997-6721, Argyros Forum Room 101, or to the Director, US Department of Education, Washington, DC, 20201.

Note: any questions relating to the admission process should be sent to admit@chapman.edu

Take a Self-Guided Tour

Chapman student giving a tour

Virtually explore Chapman in this student-led tour through our Orange Campus. You'll be able to visit classrooms, hang-out spots, our residence life area and much more!

Office of Admission Contacts

Email us:

Email General Admission

Email Transfer Admission

Email International Admission

Call us: (714) 997-6711

Send your documents:
Chapman University
Attn: Office of Admission
One University Drive 
Orange, CA 92866

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