#5 Best Colleges in America

California Institute of Technology

Pasadena, California

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California Institute of Technology overview
Location Pasadena, California
Online caltech.edu
School Type Private 4 Year
Setting Midsize City
California Institute of Technology overview
Size Small
Status Non-profit
On Campus Housing Yes
Level of Study Undergrad/Graduate
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Located in Pasadena, California, the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) is a prominent private research university known for its strong emphasis on science and engineering. Founded in 1891, Caltech maintains a compact urban campus distinguished by its Mediterranean-style architecture. The institute boasts a high faculty-to-student ratio, facilitating a personalized and rigorous academic experience, often leading to significant contributions in fields like physics, biology, and chemistry. With a campus located approximately 11 miles northeast of downtown Los Angeles, Caltech provides students access to a vibrant urban center while maintaining a focus on the intellectual atmosphere of its campus environment. The undergraduate admissions process at Caltech is highly selective, seeking out students with exemplary academic records and a demonstrated passion for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Student housing is provided, with the majority of undergraduates living on campus. While Caltech is not typically highlighted for its athletic programs, it competes in Division III as the Beavers. Caltech?s reputation is primarily anchored in its academic and research initiatives rather than its athletic endeavors.

In the most recent statistical year 16,626 prospective students applied, and 448 were granted admission.  Of those admitted 224 enrolled in the school.  2,401 students are enrolled on a full time basis, and 0 attend part time. In-state tuition for 2022/2023, excluding room and board, is $58,479 plus fees of $2,385. Caltech is ranked 5 nationally in the CollegeSimply.com 2024 U.S. Colleges Ranking.












Caltech is rated within the top 2% of four-year colleges nationally and earns a CollegeSimply grade of 10 out of 10. Learn how ratings are calculated


Rankings for California Institute of Technology within the 2024 CollegeSimply Best Colleges Lists.

View the CollegeSimply ranking methodology.

Getting In

Admission Standards

California Institute of Technology overview
SAT 1530/1580
ACT 35/36
Estimated GPA 3.97

Applications Accepted

California Institute of Technology overview
Applications Due Jan 3, 2024
Applicant Competition Extreme
Application Fee $75

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Annual Cost to Attend


Costs for California Institute of Technology
Fee Cost
Books and Supplies$1,428
Other Fees$2,385
Room and Board $18,606
Budget for Other Expenses$2,700
Total One Year Cost$83,598

Tuition and financial aid details


Average Salary After 10 Years

$85,800 per year

Bachelor's Degree Graduation Rate

87% within 6 years

Explore Post Graduation Outcomes

Popular Areas of Study

Popular subjects studied by California Institute of Technology students
Subject Percent of Class
Engineering 41%
Physical Sciences 25%
Computer and Information Sciences 11%
Mathematics 11%
Biology 8%

View All 24 Majors

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Primary data source, U.S. Department of Education https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?id=110404 IPEDS survey data for California Institute of Technology.

Current students may use the California Institute of Technology GPA calculator to determine their current college GPA.