Carleton University is one of the best universities in Ontario, and is one of the two major universities in Ottawa. Carleton also has one of the lowest university acceptance rates in Canada at just 21%. As a smaller but well-ranking university, Carleton receives thousands of applications for limited spaces in its 200 undergraduate programs. Getting into Carleton University usually means achieving a very high academic average and acing any supplemental application materials. In this blog, we’ll look at everything you need to know to get into Carleton University, including admissions statistics, eligibility, selection factors and more.

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Article Contents
6 min read

Mission Statement Admissions Statistics Eligibility Selection Factors Special Programs Interview Format Application Timeline Acceptance Information Tuition and Funding Contact Information FAQs

Mission Statement

“To provide students with innovative programs for today and tomorrow, foster productive, engaged and successful students; and connect and partner with community and businesses to advance excellence in research.”

Admissions Statistics

Acceptance rate overall: 21%

Number of applicants: N/A

Minimum Required GPA: 2.7

Average Accepted GPA: 3.9


To get into Carleton University, applicants must meet the common academic requirements to get into university in Ontario. Carleton University has a minimum grade average requirement of 70%, although the average accepted grade can vary from 70% to over 85%, depending on the program. Applicants should aim to have a grade average on par or above the average, for the best chance of admissions.

Applicants who want to get into college with a low GPA or need to boost their GPA can talk to an academic advisor in Ontario to learn what their options are for making themselves a more competitive candidate.

To apply to Carleton University, all applicants need to submit an application through the Ontario Universities Application Centre (OUAC) or through Carleton’s online application portal. Ontario high school students can apply to Carleton through the OUAC 101 application. All other Canadian applicants, US applicants and those who want to apply for university in Canada as an international student will use the OUAC 105 application form. If you are a mature applicant or transfer applicant, you will also need to apply using the OUAC 105 application.

General admission requirements for applicants to Carleton University are:

Additional Admission Requirements

Select undergraduate programs at Carleton University have additional “portfolio” or supplemental application requirements, listed below.

Selection Factors

If you want to know how to get accepted to Canadian universities like Carleton, the first item to look at is your academic grade average of GPA. Carleton University has fairly high average accepted grades, especially for its more competitive programs. You’ll want to earn a grade at or above the average one of accepted students for the best chance of admission.

The next item to consider is your OUAC application or Carleton online application. This means crafting a strong OUAC activities and employment section and securing good references. For the select programs which require a portfolio or supplementary application, the admissions committee will make decisions based on your academic transcripts and your portfolio submission. So, it is critical to take your time to create an excellent, clear and varied portfolio submission of your best work. Read the instructions for submission carefully, and consider asking for expert feedback and help from a Canadian university admission consultant before you review and submit.

Want to learn how to get into top colleges with a low GPA?

Special Programs at Carleton University

Carleton University is the home of several notable programs in Canada. The university is also the home of the oldest 4-year journalism degree in Canada, and the first graduate degree in public affairs in Canada. Carleton has excellent programs in engineering, science, the arts and humanities. It also house the House of Commons Page Program and the Great Books Program.

House of Commons Page Program and Senate Page Program

Students entering Carleton University have a unique opportunity to become a Parliamentary page in Canada’s legislative capital in Ottawa. Pages help to serve as messengers and assistants to House officials and Members of Parliament. 40 students are admitted to the program every year, with the opportunity to work and study at the same time in French or English at Carleton. Note that applicants must be French/English bilingual to apply.

Great Books Program

Carleton University has the most in-depth Great Books Program in Canada, offered through the College of the Humanities with the Bachelor of Humanities. In the Great Books program, students read the world’s most influential books in art, philosophy, history, literature, classics, music, religion and science. Students can also earn a degree in a related discipline and receive a combined honors degree.

Interview Format

Carleton University does not use an admissions interview for any of its programs, with the exception of the Bachelor of Music program, which requires an audition and a brief interview. Applicants to the Bachelor of Music will need to perform two contrasting pieces, demonstrate technical proficiency, submit a personal statement or college essay, fill out a questionnaire and have a brief interview with a staff member.

Acceptance Information

All acceptance decisions at Carleton University are sent out either through the OUAC system or Carleton’s online application portal, Carleton360. Applicants should check their messages regularly as they will need to respond to the offer letter by the noted deadline to confirm a spot in their chosen program.

Application Timeline

Below are some of the important dates and deadlines for Carleton University. Note that some programs may have different application deadlines or additional deadlines for supplemental application materials. Students who are applying through OUAC should check all important dates and deadlines listed on the OUAC website as well as Carleton University.

Tuition and Funding Opportunities

The cost to attend Carleton University is between $7,292 - $12,478 for domestic Canadian students. The costs are slightly higher for students living off-campus. For international and US students, the cost of attending Carleton University is between $48,081 - $65,950.

To cover the cost of education at Carleton, there are many scholarships in Canada for international students specifically, as well as unique Canadian scholarships to suit every type of applicant. There are also a great number of unclaimed scholarships in Canada students can take advantage of, or easy scholarships in Canada that have few eligibility requirements or short application times.

On top of the numerous scholarship opportunities in Canada, Carleton University has an extensive scholarship and bursary program for undergraduate students, awarding over $32 million in funding.

Carleton University Scholarships and Bursaries

1. Entrance Scholarships

Carleton University offers renewable entrance scholarships to admitted students with an academic average of 80% or above. International students are also automatically considered for the Carleton University International Award of Excellence and International Award of Merit.

2. Prestige Scholarship

Students with an academic average of 90% and above can apply for the Prestige Scholarship. The application requires a college recommendation letter.

3. Carleton Capital Scholarship

Up to 13 students are selected, one from each province, to receive a $2,000 scholarship in their first year. Students must have an admission average of 90% or higher and have a well-rounded participation in extracurriculars for college. The application deadline is March 1.

4. Sprott School of Business Scholarship

This is awarded to the top students entering the Bachelor of Commerce program at Carleton. Winners are awarded between $1,000-$4,000.

5. Faculty of Engineering and Design Scholarships

This is awarded to the top students entering selected Bachelor of Engineering program at Carleton. Winners are awarded between $1,000-$5,000.

6. Page Program Entrance Scholarships

A $1,000 award given to students in the House of Commons Page Program entering an undergraduate program at Carleton.                                                       

7. Arthur Kroeger College National Scholarship

Awarded to up to 10 students from each of the Canadian regions entering the Bachelor of Public Affairs and Policy Management program at Carleton. Applicants must have a minimum of 90%, and will be awarded $2,000 each.

8. Collins Memorial Entrance Scholarship for Earth Sciences

This is awarded to the top students entering a Earth Sciences program at Carleton. Winners are awarded between $1,000-$4,000.

9. The Law Scholarship in Architectural Studies

This scholarship awards $10,000 annually to an outstanding full-time undergraduate international student entering the Bachelor of Architectural Studies. Eligible students must be admitted from a high school in China or Hong Kong and have submitted an application through Carleton University.

10. Bursaries and Financial Aid

Carleton University also offers entering students bursaries and financial aid to help them cover the costs of their education. Ontario high school students may also be eligible for the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP).

Contact Information

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 613-520-3663



1. Is it hard to get into Carleton University?

With an acceptance rate of 21%, Carleton University is quite selective and competitive to get into. While it’s not impossible to get into Carleton, it can be more difficult to get accepted to more popular programs, especially since the average accepted grade at Carleton is over 85%.

2. What grade do I need to get into Carleton University?

Carleton has a minimum grade average of 70% to be considered for admissions. That being said, the average accepted grade for some of the most competitive programs is quite a bit higher at over 85%.

3. What are the requirements to get into Carleton University?

There is a minimum 70% average to get into Carleton University. Some programs may have additional requirements including prerequisite courses and the submission of a supplemental admission portfolio.

4. What is Carleton University known for?

Carleton University has especially strong programs in journalism, public affairs, international affairs, architecture and high technology. Carleton is also ranked among the happiest colleges in Canada for student experience.

5. Is Carleton University worth it?

Carleton University, while not as well-known or as big as the University of Toronto or McMaster University, is a well-regarded and highly-ranked university in Canada. It is also regarded as one of the universities with the happiest students in Canada.

6. Can I get into Carleton University as an international student?

Yes; Carleton University accepts international students from all over the globe, and even offers special scholarships just for international students to help fund their education.

7. Is Carleton University prestigious?

While Carleton University is not listed in the top 10 universities in Canada, like University of Toronto, UBC, McGill University and the University of Alberta, it has an excellent comprehensive reputation and high educational standards, award-winning faculty and some of the happiest university students in Canada.

8. How can I increase my chances of getting into Carleton University?

The best way to increase your chances of getting into Carleton University is to first earn an academic average above the listed average for your target program. If the program lists recommended prerequisite courses, add them to your course list. Next, submit the portfolio or supplemental application to help your application stand out. Follow the instructions carefully and submit a strong and well-rounded portfolio that will grab the attention of the admissions committee.

To your success,

Your friends at BeMo

BeMo Academic Consulting

Disclaimer: BeMo does not endorse or affiliate with any universities, colleges, or official test administrators. The content has been developed based on the most recent publicly available data provided from the official university website. However, you should always check the statistics/requirements with the official school website for the most up to date information. You are responsible for your own results. 


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Disclaimer: BeMo does not endorse or affiliate with any universities, colleges, or official test administrators. The content has been developed based on the most recent publicly available data provided from the official university website. However, you should always check the statistics/requirements with the official school website for the most up to date information. You are responsible for your own results. 

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