Northeastern University

Boston, Massachusetts 360 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA, 02115

Northeastern Acceptance Rate

Acceptance Rate 18%
Acceptance Deadline January 1

Northeastern University is a private university located in Boston, Massachusetts. The university has an undergraduate enrollment of almost 16,000. The breadth of programs available at this well-known east coast university appeals to many students. There are over 90 majors and concentrations for students to study at Northeastern.

The Northeastern ranking is #44 on U.S. News’ list of best National Universities. And, with record numbers of students applying each year, the Northeastern University acceptance rate is quite selective.  

In fact, the Northeastern acceptance rate is more selective now than ever before. Factors such as national ranking and number of applicants affect the Northeastern University acceptance rate. Given this private university’s high ranking, many students decide to submit applications to Northeastern. So, it’s no surprise the Northeastern acceptance rate happens to be one of the most selective in the nation. 

When considering how to get into Northeastern, understanding the Northeastern acceptance rate is important. Students reviewing the Northeastern acceptance rate might also look at other prestigious universities in Boston. This big city is home to a few universities with quite selective college acceptance rates. But remember, college acceptance rates aren’t everything when it comes to choosing the best school for you

What is the acceptance rate for Northeastern?

The Northeastern acceptance rate is 18%. The low Northeastern University acceptance rate grants it a “most selective” ranking among other universities in the nation. In the 2021 Northeastern admissions cycle (class of 2026), the Northeastern acceptance rate was the lowest it’s ever been. 

What factors contributed to such a low Northeastern acceptance rate in 2022? A record large applicant pool was the biggest factor. Over 90,000 students applied for Northeastern admissions. Of those, only 6,179 were admitted.

Statistics suggest that the Northeastern University acceptance rate will remain competitive. In fall 2023, there was a record number of applicants. 96,327 students applied hoping to beat the Northeastern acceptance rate (up from 91,100 in 2022). 

Is Northeastern a top tier school?

With the Northeastern University acceptance rate at 18%, it is comparable to other elite institution. In recent years, more students have opted to complete a Northeastern application. This contributes to the competitive Northeastern University acceptance rate. 

However, it’s not just the acceptance rate for Northeastern that makes it a highly regarded university. Northeastern’s location in Boston provides ample opportunities that students wouldn’t be able to find anywhere else. Another benefit is the campus, which feels like a college town despite its urban location.

The university also has some of the best research facilities in the nation as well as a distinguished faculty. So, students will be sure to get a quality experience both in and outside of the classroom. 

Northeastern application requirements

Knowing how to get into Northeastern will take more than just meeting the Northeastern requirements. Students should thoroughly understand the application process and submit a well-rounded application. By learning more about the Northeastern requirements and starting early, students can increase their admissions odds. 

Students can access the Northeastern application via the Common App or Coalition App. Here are the required materials to submit with the Northeastern application:

  • Official high school transcript
  • One counselor recommendation
  • One teacher recommendation

If applicants aren’t native English speakers, they will need to complete an English proficiency exam. Students applying to the College of Arts, Media, and Design may need to submit a creative portfolio.

What about the Northeastern SAT requirements? Well, technically, there are no Northeastern SAT requirements as the university is test-optional through 2026. While there are no official Northeastern SAT requirements, students should still submit high SAT scores if possible. Applicants should aim to fall within the 1430-1550 range in order to make their Northeastern application competitive.

For more details on the Northeastern requirements, check out the Northeastern admissions site. Students can also learn more about how admissions evaluates student applications. The admissions review process evaluates factors such as GPA, essays, and extracurriculars.

Students can check their application status after submitting all the required documents. However, all results will be released at once on the Northeastern decision date. 

Does Northeastern superscore?

When considering application information and requirements, students may wonder about standardized testing. Since Northeastern University accepts standardized test scores, do they superscore? The answer is yes, Northeastern does superscore. That means that they will add together each student’s highest section scores to get their overall test score. 

Northeastern University is currently a test-optional school. That means that applicants do not have to submit their standardized test scores when completing the Northeastern application. Applicants who choose not to submit their standardized test scores will not be at a disadvantage during the evaluation process. It just means admissions will have to rely more on other factors during their review process.

As we’ve seen, the Northeastern University acceptance rate is extremely selective. So, applicants should consider submitting competitive test scores. Applicants can learn more about the Northeastern test-optional policy on their website. 

Northeastern Early Action Acceptance Rate

Beyond the Northeastern decision date, Early Action and Early Decision cycles can often have an impact on the admissions process. Northeastern offers several admissions deadlines: Early Action, Early Decision I, Early Decision II, and Regular Decision. 

Students who are committed to attending Northeastern might be interested in applying Early Decision I or Early Decision II. However, note that students who apply Early Decision enter a binding agreement should they be accepted. 

On the other hand, Early Action is not a binding agreement. Applicants should apply Early Action if:

  • Northeastern is one of their top schools
  • They want their Northeastern decision date to be sooner
  • They believe they have enough time to craft a competitive application by the application deadline 

When considering the Northeastern University acceptance rate, applicants might wonder if it is advantageous to apply Early Action. Will it increase an applicant’s odds of being accepted? Not necessarily. 

However, according to Forbes, the 2022-2023 early round Northeastern acceptance rate was 38.9%. That’s well over the Northeastern University acceptance rate. This higher Northeastern acceptance rate is likely due to the amount of competitive and highly qualified candidates who choose to apply Early Decision or Early Action. 

Students hoping to beat the Northeastern Early Action acceptance rate will need to complete their application by November 1st. The Northeastern decision date for Early Action applicants is February 1st

Northeastern Acceptance Rate Takeaways

The Northeastern acceptance rate is among one of the most competitive in the nation. With top research facilities, experienced faculty, and a prime location, more and more students are applying to this prestigious university. More recently, the Northeastern acceptance rate hit an all-time low. And, with an influx of yearly applications, it’s unlikely to become less selective in the coming years. 

College acceptance rates are important in that they can help applicants better create their college lists. Northeastern will likely be a “reach” school for most students. In order to have the best chances of gaining admission, students should start their application early. Not only that, they should aim to create the most compelling application narrative possible.  

Expert guidance can make a major difference for students as they prepare to apply to Northeastern. Learn more about what it’s like to work with a CollegeAdvisor expert by scheduling a meeting here.

Northeastern Tuition

Average Cost* $29,714
Average Total Aid Awarded $53,063
Students Receiving Financial Aid 33.22%
*Average cost after financial aid for students receiving grant or scholarship aid, as reported by the college.

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Northeastern Classes

Student Faculty Ratio 15:1

Northeastern Majors

Northeastern offers more than 90 majors and concentrations housed in 8 different colleges. The Northeastern majors include many of the top college majors nationwide. Additionally, the Northeastern minors expand the school’s available areas of study to over 280

For those interested in an interdisciplinary education, many Northeastern majors can also be combined. Most Northeastern University majors focus on experiential learning through cooperative education programs. These co-op programs differentiate Northeastern programs from other college majors, as students typically take full-time internships for at least one semester. Experiential learning is a part of the Northeastern requirements, meaning students must complete a learning experience outside a traditional classroom. 

The Northeastern University majors are organized by colleges. These are:

On each college’s website, students can explore the offered college majors and read about each programs’ requirements. 

What is Northeastern known for?

Northeastern is best known for its college majors and co-op programs. The Northeastern enrollment data showcases the amount of co-op placements for each year, reflecting how many students participate. 

Northeastern is located in Boston, providing students with many local internship opportunities. Students are also able to participate in co-op programs abroad. All Northeastern majors allow students to participate in a co-op, and according to the Northeastern Admissions office, 93% of Northeastern graduates are employed or in a graduate program 9 months after graduation. 

Top programs at Northeastern

Northeastern is also known for its highly ranked programs across a variety of fields. According to U.S News, the Northeastern ranking is currently #44 in National Universities. Many Northeastern University majors also rank highly according to U.S News, including International Business (#9), and Engineering (#50). These are also some of the most popular Northeastern majors. The Northeastern ranking reflects the high caliber of  the school’s faculty and resources. 

In addition to the Northeastern majors and minors available, Northeastern is also known for its study abroad programs. With over 200 different global programs, Northeastern offers students many opportunities to study abroad. According to the Northeastern Admissions Office, most Northeastern University majors will allow students to integrate a study abroad semester into their studies. 

Exploring the Northeastern Majors Catalog

The Northeastern Majors Catalog allows prospective students to explore the Northeastern majors and minors offered by each college. Students can read in-depth descriptions for each of the Northeastern majors. For students unsure of what to major in, reading through the Northeastern majors can help. 

Students can also learn about the Northeastern combined majors within each program. The Northeastern Majors Catalog details Northeastern majors from Africana studies to marine and environmental sciences. The catalog also details the Northeastern requirements for each program, allowing students to map out their studies. 

Interdisciplinary studies

In addition to the specific Northeastern University majors, students can learn about the many interdisciplinary Northeastern majors and minors available. For example, within the College of Social Sciences and Humanities, there are several different combinations of majors and highly specialized minors for students to consider. 

For students unsure of what to major in, the Northeastern Majors Catalog is a reliable resource. For a general overview of college majors, students can also read our guide on How to Choose a Major here. Northeastern offers many popular college majors, such as economics and psychology. The catalog allows students to research the specifics for each of the Northeastern majors. 

What are the Northeastern combined majors?

The Northeastern combined majors allow students to personalize their academic studies. Northeastern offers over 180 defined combined majors for students to consider. Additionally, the school allows students to create their own combined major. Most of the Northeastern majors are available as part of a combined major, allowing students flexibility and increased options when considering what to major in. 

Students can combine Northeastern majors across colleges as well. For example, the Journalism and Political Science major allows students to study in both the College of Arts, Media, and Design as well as the College of Social Sciences and Humanities. The Northeastern University majors are designed to allow students to customize their educational experience, creating many possibilities for unique degree paths. 

What are Northeastern University’s popular majors?

According to U.S News, the top five Northeastern University popular majors are business, engineering, computer sciences, health sciences, and biology. 

The Northeastern University popular majors reflect some of the most popular majors country-wide. The Northeastern enrollment data reflects the popularity of each of these majors. As part of Northeastern’s experiential learning model, students can also complete a co-op within each of the Northeastern majors. For students interested in these Northeastern University majors, exploring co-op opportunities will help with their degree plan.

In addition to the Northeastern University popular majors, many students will also pursue a combined major or degree. Within each of the Northeastern University popular majors, students can combine their degree with many of the other Northeastern majors. So, beyond the Northeastern University popular majors, students can consider many different pathways. 

Northeastern Majors and Minors – Additional Info

There are many different Northeastern majors and minors offered across all 8 colleges. For students unsure of what to major in, Northeastern allows students to change their major. Northeastern also provides guidance through the co-op experience through the Employer Engagement and Career Design office. Several Northeastern majors are also part of PlusOne Program, in which students are able to pursue both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree at the same time. 

According to U.S News, the student-faculty ratio at Northeastern is 15:1. While the total Northeastern enrollment is 15,747, students will likely still have small class sizes. Many Northeastern majors are specialized according to each student’s interests and career goals. This provides a unique and focused learning environment. 

Northeastern minors offer students an opportunity to bolster any one of the Northeastern University majors with another course of study. While not a part of the Northeastern requirements, the Northeastern minors can offer further degree specialization and focus. Northeastern minors typically require a minimum of four courses to be completed, but the specific requirements may vary from program to program. Northeastern minors can enhance many college majors. Many students will add Northeastern minors or concentrations to help specialize their degree or explore a second area of study. 

Northeastern Majors – Final Thoughts

With over 90 different Northeastern majors and minors, students have many options. The ability to combine Northeastern University majors allows students to create specialized programs of study. According to the Northeastern Admissions Office, the school’s focus on experiential learning makes Northeastern stand out. With Northeastern ranking #44 in National Universities, the many different college majors and programs available offer ample opportunities for career development. 

The high Northeastern ranking makes many of the popular Northeastern University majors competitive. For those in need of guidance, the Northeastern Admissions Office can help students navigate their options. Students interested in applying to Northeastern should refer to the Northeastern admissions website for information on deadlines, Northeastern requirements, and directions on how to apply.

Most Popular Majors
  • Business
  • Economics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Information Science
  • Communications
  • Political Science and Government
  • Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Research and Experimental Psychology
  • Neuroscience and Neurobiology

Northeastern University Online

Offers Online Courses Yes

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Northeastern Enrollment

Full-Time Undergrad Enrollment 15,747
Part-Time Undergraduates 45

Northeastern Alumni at CollegeAdvisor

Meaghan Gee
Cornell University
Hi, nice to meet you! I'm a 2019 graduate from Cornell University where I studied Industrial and Labor Relations and minored in Business and Inequality Studies. As a student, I worked at my school's Office of Career Services where I reviewed resumes and cover letters, and conducted mock interviews. I thoroughly enjoyed helping my peers obtain their dream internships and full time jobs, and am looking forward to helping you in your college search!

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CollegeAdvisor Reviews from Students accepted to Northeastern

Nico Gentile
Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

Throughout my time applying to colleges my advisor was always there to look over and essay and provide me with amazing feedback! I am so grateful for all the work and advice that my advisors gave me when applying to college!

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Columbia University

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