First-Year Applicants


ApplicationCommon App
$70 App Fee or Fee
Waiver Request
Pitzer Writing
Common App Prompts
Two Required
Required for
Certain Students*
English Language TestRequired for Non-Native English Speakers

* Required for homeschooled, Joint Medical Program applicants, and students attending schools from which grades are not provided.


  • The Admission Committee looks at each applicant:
    • To determine preparation and potential for college-level work.
    • For demonstrated strong academic ability, maturity and independence.
  • Emphasis is placed on high school transcripts, recommendation letters, leadership positions, work history, involvement in school and community activities, and commitment to Pitzer’s core values.
  • Pitzer is test-optional. You may submit the SAT or ACT if you feel your results best represent your academic potential. The admission committee makes no assumptions as to why you choose to submit scores or not. Note: Homeschooled students or students who attend secondary schools from which grades are not provided are required to submit either the SAT or ACT. Read more about our test-optional policy here.


  • Complete a rigorous college preparatory program through your senior year.
    • 4 years of English—especially courses that emphasize writing.
    • At least 3 years each of:
      • foreign language
      • mathematics and
      • social, behavioral and natural sciences
    • We strongly recommend honors and advanced placement courses.
  • Your application should present how you feel you will benefit from and contribute to Pitzer College.
Pitzer First-Year Applicants



Pitzer Writing Supplement

  • The required Pitzer Writing Supplement section of the Common Application has a maximum length of 650 words. You will choose from one of these prompts.
    At Pitzer, five core values distinguish our approach to education: social responsibility, intercultural understanding, interdisciplinary learning, student engagement and environmental sustainability. As agents of change, our students utilize these values to create solutions to our world’s challenges. Please answer only ONE of the following prompts.
  • Reflecting on your involvement throughout high school or within the community, how have you engaged with one of Pitzer’s core values?
  • Describe what you are looking for from your college experience and why Pitzer would be a good fit for you.
  • Pitzer is known for our students’ intellectual and creative activism. If you could work on a cause that is meaningful to you through a project, artistic, academic, or otherwise, what would you do?

Teacher Recommendations

  • Two recommendations from teachers are required. Recommendations should come from teachers who have taught you during your junior or senior year in a core academic subject.
  • Recommendations should be submitted electronically through the Common Application website: My Colleges > Pitzer College > Recommendations and FERPA. You’ll find instructions for submitting recommendations online or via an offline form to be scanned and emailed to
  • All recommendation letters must be sent to our office directly by the recommender.

School Report

  • A report from your school counselor is required (a Counselor Recommendation is optional).
  • The report should be submitted electronically through the Common Application website: My Colleges > Pitzer College > Recommendations and FERPA. You’ll find instructions for submitting the report online or via an offline form to be scanned and emailed to
  • The report must be sent to our office directly by your school counselor.

Mid-Year Report/Final Report

  • The mid-year report should be submitted as soon as first trimester or first semester senior grades are available.
  • Admitted students and students who have already completed high school must submit a Final Report including a final transcript.

High School Transcript

  • If still enrolled in high school, applicants must submit all official transcripts available.
  • High school graduate need to submit only the final transcript with the graduation date.

International Applicants

  • Pitzer requires the demonstration of English proficiency from students whose native language is not English.
  • This must be done by:
    • Submitting the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
    • Or submitting the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
    • Or submitting and being granted an English Language  (Click here to find out more about the process)
  • In order to be considered for admission, students must submit official scores or be granted a waiver. For students who submit testing, a minimum score of 100 IBT or 7 IELTS.
    • However, students who are qualified for admission to Pitzer in all ways except English proficiency are eligible for the International Scholars Program. Applicants must:
      • Achieve at least a 70 IBT or 6.5 IELTS.
      • Or have submitted an English Language and been notified that they will be considered for admission through the International Scholars Program.
  • Pitzer can only accept the IELTS or the Internet Based Testing version of TOEFL. Pitzer does not currently accept alternate tests of English proficiency (such as Duolingo (DET), paper-based TOEFL, etc.), but they may be included in your English Language  to support your request.
  • For more information about applying as an international student, please click here.

Deferring Entrance

  • Admitted students may be considered for deferral for a year to pursue non-academic goals. Deferrals are considered on a case-by-case basis by the Pitzer admission staff.
  • Students may not enroll at another institution during their deferral year, and will not receive credit at Pitzer for any courses taken.
  • Admitted students must submit their commitment deposit by May 1 in order to hold a place at Pitzer. Admitted students are also required to send an email explaining their gap year plans and requesting deferred entrance.
  • The Pitzer admission staff will only consider deferral requests that are submitted in writing to the Admission Office. Requests will be approved on a first come basis.
  • The deadline for submitting deferral requests is May 10. Additional questions or concerns may be directed to the Pitzer admissions staff at


  • Pitzer awards course credit in all AP subjects/courses.
  • One course credit is granted for each test score result of 4 or 5, with some exceptions made by individual field groups.
  • AP credits are applied toward the 32-course graduation requirement but may not be used to satisfy an Educational Objective requirement.
  • In general, AP credits do not apply to field of major requirements. Consultation with the appropriate advisor/field group is required for possible exceptions.
  • Currently, there is no limit to the number of academic credits Pitzer grants for AP exams.


  • Four credits may be granted for an IB diploma.
  • Credit for exams may be awarded only for higher-level exams—with a score of at least five—at a ratio of 4 semester units per exam, with a maximum of 16 transferable semester units.
  • If certification diploma is not completed, individual courses or exams completed toward the certificate may be given credit.
  • Credit will not be awarded for subsidiary exams.
  • IB credits are applied toward the 32-course graduation requirement, but may not be used to satisfy the Educational Objective requirement.
  • In all cases when credit has been awarded for IB exams, that credit will be rescinded if courses are taken which duplicate or significantly overlap the IB courses.