Clemson University vs. University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) Overview

You’re wrestling with a tough question: “Should I go to Clemson University or University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) ?”

What are your chances at Clemson University?

Your SAT Score
Your ACT Score
Select a score
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 19
  • 20
  • 21
  • 22
  • 23
  • 24
  • 25
  • 26
  • 27
  • 28
  • 29
  • 30
  • 31
  • 32
  • 33
  • 34
  • 35
  • 36
  • Your GPA*
    on a 4.0 scale

    *gpa score is required

    This free college chances tool calculates your acceptance chances at Clemson University or any other U.S. college

    Please note all chances are estimates based on test score and GPA averages.

    *or select a school above for a specific calculation

    Need chances at another college?

    This complete guide analyzes both the quantitative and qualitative differences between Clemson University and University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC). This comparison is particularly valuable at understanding the cultural nuances between the colleges since it uses student videos to capture the “vibes” of campus - these videos are exclusively available on CampusReel :)

    Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let’s go through a general overview of the high-level differences between Clemson University and University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC). The table below summarizes some of the most important statistics around competitiveness, costs, etc.

    Clemson University University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC)
    In-state Tuition $14,272 $11,482
    Net Price $15,885.0 $18,555.0
    Average Financial Aid $6,662 $2,839
    Total Undergraduates 17740 24941
    Average SAT Scores 1150 - 1350 1110 - 1290
    Acceptance Rate 51 65
    Location 201 Sikes Hall Columbia-Campus
    City Name Clemson Columbia

    WARNINGS: Based on net price alone, Clemson University is the cheaper option. However, this sticker price may not adequately represent the difference in living costs between Clemson and Columbia. Clemson University is in a South Atlantic and University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) is in a South Atlantic - sometimes off campus meals and housing costs can dramatically vary between schools.

    Is Clemson University or University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) Harder to get into? Which school is easier to get into?

    If you’re looking at acceptance rate alone, then Clemson University is more difficult to get into. However, each college is looking to fill its incoming class with a variety of students with different strengths, backgrounds, etc. Therefore, the acceptance rate alone is not a good indicator that Clemson University is a better school or will be more difficult for you specifically to get into. On the flipside, University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) is easier to get into based on acceptance rate alone.

    You can use the below college admissions predictor to determine your likelihood of acceptance at either school.

    What are your chances at Clemson University?

    Your SAT Score
    Your ACT Score
    Select a score
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 19
  • 20
  • 21
  • 22
  • 23
  • 24
  • 25
  • 26
  • 27
  • 28
  • 29
  • 30
  • 31
  • 32
  • 33
  • 34
  • 35
  • 36
  • Your GPA*
    on a 4.0 scale

    *gpa score is required

    This free college chances tool calculates your acceptance chances at Clemson University or any other U.S. college

    Please note all chances are estimates based on test score and GPA averages.

    *or select a school above for a specific calculation

    Need chances at another college?

    How do Clemson University dorms compare to housing options at University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC)?

    Both colleges provide on-campus living options. Clemson University charges for on-campus living, while University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) charges N/A for on-campus living. Most importantly, though, check out the video below for a sample of dorm tours at each school.

    How does Clemson University social life compare to University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC)?

    It’s tough to understand the nuances of social life with data alone. That’s why we’ve brought in real student videos to show how Clemson University social life differs from University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC).

    The table below helps demonstrate the student body differences as well.
    Clemson University, % University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC), %
    White 83.46000000000001 76.84
    Hispanic 3.2099999999999995 4.41
    Black 6.61 9.569999999999999
    Foreign 0.7100000000000001 1.44
    Others 6 7.7

    How different is the Clemson University campus compared to University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) campus?

    The Clemson University campus is located in Clemson, SC and is characterized as Suburb: Large (outside principal city, in urbanized area with population of 250,000 or more). The University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) campus is located in Columbia, SC and is characterized as City: Midsize (population of at least 100,000 but less than 250,000).

    Which school gives more financial aid?

    Clemson University provides $6,662 whereas University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) provides an average of $2,839.

    How does Clemson University academics compare to University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC)?

    When analyzing academics between Clemson University and University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) we’ll look at both what current students are studying and also where they end up after graduation. After all, college should prepare you for a career! Analyzing each school’s outcomes is super valuable to understand the value of the degree.

    Majors Clemson University University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC)
    Agriculture agriculture operations and related sciences 280 N/A
    Natural resources and conservation 49 43
    Architecture and related services 47 N/A
    Area ethnic cultural gender and group studies N/A 15
    Communication journalism and related programs 7 349
    Computer and information sciences and support services 128 170
    Communications technologies technicians and support services N/A N/A
    Personal and culinary services N/A N/A
    Engineering 869 413
    Education 120 236
    Engineering technologies and engineering related fields 57 N/A

    Which is better: Clemson University or University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC)?

    What are your chances at Clemson University?

    Your SAT Score
    Your ACT Score
    Select a score
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
  • 13
  • 14
  • 15
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 19
  • 20
  • 21
  • 22
  • 23
  • 24
  • 25
  • 26
  • 27
  • 28
  • 29
  • 30
  • 31
  • 32
  • 33
  • 34
  • 35
  • 36
  • Your GPA*
    on a 4.0 scale

    *gpa score is required

    This free college chances tool calculates your acceptance chances at Clemson University or any other U.S. college

    Please note all chances are estimates based on test score and GPA averages.

    *or select a school above for a specific calculation

    Need chances at another college?

    We’ve compared dorm life, costs, outcomes and more to provide the most complete comparison between Clemson University and University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC). But, you’re smart enough to know that numbers paint a terrible picture for truly understanding what each college and community is like. And, the real answer to which school is better is: the school that’s right for you. No matter who you ask, if they know what they’re talking about, the answer is the same: the “better” school is whatever is the best fit for you personally. That’s why it’s extremely important to check out all the videos on CampusReel for each school.

    For more comparisons of Clemson University check these out:

    For more comparison of University of South Carolina-Columbia (USC) check these out: