University of Central Arkansas


The University of Central Arkansas (UCA) is a public university with approximately 11,000 students. It was founded in 1907 in Conway, Arkansas, about 30 miles north of capital city Little Rock. The area, which is also home to two other colleges, is often referred to as the “City of Colleges” because so many of its residents are college students.

UCA offers more than 80 undergraduate degrees, 39 master’s programs, and five doctoral programs broken down into six colleges. Each college provides a unique educational experience that will help shape your time at the University. For example, the College of Business offers a state-of-the-art facility with small class sizes and 12 seminar rooms that foster individual learning. The College of Liberal Arts stresses a community environment with collaborative learning and a free exchange of ideas.

Study Abroad

Students who want to study abroad during their college career should visit the Study Abroad Office to learn about available opportunities. UCA students can participate in semester-long and year-long programs, including special exchange programs with UCA’s partner schools all over the world. Students can also learn about financial aid opportunities and scholarships for specific study abroad programs. International travel can be a big part of your college education – dream big, start planning early, and it’s easy to make your study abroad plans a reality!

The Honors College

The Honors College gives exceptional students the opportunity to challenge themselves both inside and outside the classroom. Once students have been accepted to UCA through the general admissions process, they may apply for the selective Honors College through a separate application that includes two essays and letters of recommendation. Part of the process of acceptance is the ‘Inform and Interview Day,’ when prospective students visit campus to learn more about the College and to meet with Honors faculty. On this day, students are also assessed on the basis of skills and values. Less than 20% of applicants to the Honors College are accepted, but those that are have access to scholarships, additional academic resources, closer relationships with professors, and an interdisciplinary curriculum that stresses leadership and citizenship.

Most Popular Fields of Study


Information Summary

Ranks 6th in Arkansas and 592nd overall. See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list
Overall Score (about) 85.5
Total Cost On-Campus Attendance $22,563
Admission Success rate N/A
ACT / SAT 75%ile scores 27 / 1170
Student Ratio Students-to-Faculty 15 : 1
Retention (full-time / part-time) 74% / 40%
Enrollment Total (all students) 11,177


To apply to UCA, start by filling out the online application form, which is available on the school’s “Applying to UCA” webpage. Be sure to send in your high school transcripts, ACT (preferred) or SAT scores, medical immunization records, and the application fee in hard copy. Admissions is decided on a rolling basis, and students generally know within seven to ten days whether they’ve been approved. Registration happens in June and July, and accepted students are guided through this process with the help of their faculty advisors.

Incoming freshman can choose to participate in the SOAR (Summer Orientation and Academic Registration) program, which introduces students to college life, helps them register for classes, and gives freshman a chance to meet people before beginning school in the fall. It’s a short, two-day program filled with activities and helpful tutorials. Space fills up quickly, so be sure to apply early!


Campus building :: University of Central Arkansas Irby hall :: University of Central Arkansas
Chemistry building :: University of Central Arkansas


UCA is home to over 200 student groups and clubs. To join a student organization, first take a look at the list of available groups online. These groups are categorized by function: Greek, departmental (sponsored by a university department), service, special interest, sports clubs, honorary (recognized honor societies), religious, recreation, and more. There are clubs for everything from Model United Nations to Quidditch, hall governments to Bear bowling. You’re sure to find a group that fits your interests.

If you’re interested in Greek life, you might want to join one of UCA’s 19 fraternities and sororities, which belong to four different governing body councils. As a member of UCA’s Greek organizations, you’ll make new friends, participate in exclusive events, give back to your community, and more. The ‘deferred recruitment’ process means that you can receive a bid once you’ve earned 12 college credits and meet a minimum GPA requirement.

For students who want to become campus leaders, the i.d.e.a.l. Leadership Team is the perfect training program. Designed to help incoming freshmen become effective leaders, the program teaches students about communication skills, conflict resolution, and ethical decision making, as well as introducing them to the people and resources on campus that help facilitate good leadership at UCA.

Campus Life

There are 10 residence halls and a number of apartment housing options on campus. Three residential colleges combine living and learning in a co-education environment to give students a comprehensive package of higher education through clustered classes and a side-by-side living with UCA faculty.

In addition to academic buildings and residence halls, UCA also has some special interest buildings on campus. Music and theatre lovers will enjoy the Donald W. Reynolds Performance Hall, which serves as the stage for resident dance, theatre, and music students and often features professional performances and shows as well. Or stop by the Baum Gallery if you’re interested in art; the gallery has rotating exhibitions and educational programs for students and faculty alike.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics


UCA is a NCAA Division I school that has 15 varsity men’s and women’s teams in a variety of sports, including football, basketball, soccer, track and field, and others. The Bears belong to the Southland Conference, which allows it to compete with schools in Texas and Louisiana.

The HPER (Health, Physical Education, and Recreation) Center is a top-rate athletic facility that is free for student use. Stop by for a quick round of volleyball, a basketball game, a yoga class, or weight training in the fitness center. You can also sign up for intramural sports teams, which are organized by students and give more casual athletes a chance to compete within the campus.

Additional School Information

Welcome Week at UCA is a tradition that many students look forward to all summer. Beginning with move-in day and continuing through a week of events, concerts, activities, and programs, this is a fun-filled way to get acclimated to campus life and meet new people.

Freshman are initiated during the Opening Convocation ceremony, which officially welcomes new students to the Bear family. The Conway Daze program and RSO Fair introduce students to the different opportunities available on and off campus, and the Back to School Pep Rally immediately following launches the athletic season with UCA Basketball & Football Scrimmage games.


  • Registered Student Organizations. RSO List Sprint 2011. The University of Central Arkansas. XLS.
  • UCA Go Greek. Greek Life – The University of Central Arkansas. Print.
  • UCA | University of Central Arkansas | Best College | US News.” US News & World Report | News & Rankings | Best Colleges, Best Hospitals, and More. Web. 20 July 2011.
  • University of Central Arkansas – Home. Web. 20 July 2011.
  • University of Central Arkansas Office of Orientation. S.O.A.R. Brochure. Print.
  • You Belong. The University of Central Arkansas. The University of Central Arkansas. Web. 20 July 2011.

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