Northeastern University

Boston, Massachusetts
www.northeastern.edu 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

University of Michigan – Ann Arbor

As a first-generation college student and a daughter of immigrant family, I had to navigate the college process on entirely on my own. I am eager to work with students in search of extra support as they embark on a pivotal moment in their journeys. I believe in encouraging students to embrace their creativity to highlight their strengths and their stories while marketing themselves to their schools of interest. As a Michigan graduate, I am a Wolverine at heart and embrace the title trailblazer in my work with high school students everyday.

Also Accepted to

I recently graduate Dean's List from Brandeis University with a BA in Public Health and African-American studies. During my time at Brandeis I was heavily involved in Jewish life, research, orientation programming, and community service initiatives. I worked with students of all ages in the local school district. After graduating I took a role at Big Brothers Big Sisters running a mentoring program for high schoolers. The program focused on building meaningful relationships with an emphasis on college and career readiness. I created programming to guide students on making college lists and thinking about areas of study. This experience emphasized the importance of relationship in building when making big decisions- like college planning. I then went on to spend the next few years working as an Admission Counselor at Brandeis University followed by Olin College of Engineering. In these roles I was able to guide prospective students and applicants though the application process and beyond. I would advise students on essay topics and the extracurriculars section, offering guidance on how to make their application represent them the best. I gained an understanding of the entire admission process from beginning to end, seeing the areas where students can shine most. This experience could be stressful for some students but continuing to communicate with one another made all the difference. I now work as a Client Success Manager at a remote software company guiding our clients on best practices and troubleshooting the product. I love being able to guide and teach people everyday and I'm excited to continue that journey here. When not working at the computer, you can find me cooking, playing tennis, reading or going for a long walk.

Syracuse University

I have over 20 years of experience as a college counselor working with domestic US students as well as international students applying to US colleges. I lived abroad for 10 years and worked at 2 premier international schools guiding and advising students with applications to the US as well as Canada, the UK, and Europe. My jobs have allowed me the opportunity to visit close to 200 college campuses across the globe. I am passionate about career development and guiding students to tell their stories through essays and other aspects of the application. I live and breathe college admissions on a daily basis and stay current with the changing landscape. The most enjoyable parts of my job are working directly with young adults and helping them to uncover their talents and how those are related to their futures - college and beyond!

Also Accepted to

Northeastern University

Hello! My name is Jolie Chan (she/her) and I'm eager and thrilled to work together in your college search and application process. I hold a B.A. in Communication Sciences and a Minor in Business from the University of Connecticut, where I graduated in 2013. While in college, I joined the Student Union Board of Governors as the Concert Committee Co-chair, studied abroad in London, and subsequently worked at the Office of Study Abroad, connecting UConn's abroad students with current students. After undergrad, I remained close to the higher education space by volunteering as the Co-president of the Boston Chapter of the UConn Alumni Network, organizing events for expanded alumni connection in the Boston area. I also served as a Career Advisor & Mentor to current UConn undergraduate students. In 2015, I joined Northeastern University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions as an Admissions Counselor and worked my way up to a Senior Assistant Director role. Simultaneously, I earned my MEd in Higher Education Administration from Northeastern University in 2017. During my nearly 5 years at NU, I recruited in a variety of domestic territories in New England, New York, and the Mountain region, and evaluated applications across Early Decision, Early Action, and Regular Decision pools. I have sat on panels and have hosted workshops on how to navigate a highly selective admissions process and on essay writing. I also had the unique experience of working with current undergraduate students through mentorship and advisory on their leadership & professional development. This gave me the opportunity to provide guidance to students beyond the admissions process, and I was able to gain perspective on what the full lifecycle of an undergraduate student and their college journey can look like. I'm excited to take your big dreams (even if you're still discovering what those are) and provide holistic insight into how you can create a thriving undergraduate experience. I'm excited to support you in putting your best foot forward in the college application process, and to watch your opportunities unfold. This is just the beginning!

Also Accepted to

Drexel University
College of William & Mary

It's great to meet you! My name is Jack Zhang, and I served as an Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Admissions at William & Mary. During my time in admissions, I read applications, travelled around the country to meet students, and wrote for the William & Mary Admit It! Blog. My experiences as an Admissions Officer William & Mary have given me an unique lens to help you with the college application process. My goal with working with CollegeAdvisor is to help de-mystify much of the college application process and help you get one step closer to achieving your dreams. I have helped a number of students over the years, and my passion is helping you tell your story and find your voice. Over the years, I have helped students get into their top choice schools like the University of Pennsylvania, Georgetown University, New York University, and the University of Michigan. College was an incredible, transformative experience for me, and I want to help you find the best college that is the best fit for you.

Also Accepted to

Northeastern University

Education Consultant with Under/Graduate specialized experience.

I have graduated from multiple institutions both in the US and abroad. My experience extends to over 15 years of educational instruction, leadership, investment, research and administrative roles. My career allowed me to experience different perspectives of education, so I believe in wholesomeness and focus when I deal with my clients. Within my publications and books, you will find that I try my best to advise people to make decisions that increase their happiness as distressed souls are usually wearing the wrong shoes or walking the wrong paths because of pressure. My strength is the ability to solve my clients' problems and help them attain their goals. Would you like me to help you make your dream(s) come true? Book a session - let's chat!

Also Accepted to

University of California – Irvine

I earned my Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Computer Science with a specialization in Information at the University of California, Irvine (UCI) in 2021 where I graduated cum laude (top 10% of graduating class). In addition to my current professional work experience as a Data Engineer, I have an extensive background in academic advising through my position as a UCI Peer Academic Advisor to computer science college students for 1.5 years and as a mentor to young students in the Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) program for 4 years. For the past 2.5 years, I have been working as a Data Engineer in the wearable fitness device space, automotive software space, and the utilities industry. As a data engineer, I write code for the collection, validation, and transportation of data from one system to another to enable data scientists, business intelligence engineers, data analysts, software engineers, and other stakeholders to work efficiently. My technical stack consists primarily of Python (coding), SQL (database query language), and Amazon Web Services (AWS, cloud computing platform). Prior to my current role, I completed an internship at the U.S. Department of State (DOS) during which I wrote code for the purpose of extracting massive amounts of data from the web for a large machine learning project. I also interned at a Bay Area healthcare startup where I was heavily involved with the data processing of medical notes in a machine learning natural language processing data pipeline. As a UCI Peer Academic Advisor, I advised students who majored in computer science, data science, informatics, software engineering, and computer game science in their undergraduate degree and post-grad careers. I am knowledgeable in the overall tech industry and what it takes to apply and interview at big tech companies (e.g. Google, TikTok, Meta, etc.), smaller-sized tech companies, and non-tech companies. I am passionate about working with self-motivated students who are interested in the tech industry, and I offer expert counsel on the courses, extracurricular activities, and projects they can pursue to cultivate their passions and ultimately stand out in their college applications.

Also Accepted to

I was a first-generation college student. I hold a B.A. in Public Relations with a minor in Psychology from Susquehanna University and an M.S. in Leadership from Northeastern University. My work experience in college admissions and college counseling spans over 15 years. I have worked at various colleges and universities including Simmons University and Dartmouth College. Also, I have been a college counselor at independent schools and non-profit organizations. I managed scholarships, visitation, and access programs. I've been an engaged member of regional and national admissions organizations, including presenting at conferences. My approach is student-centered with self-exploration and self-discovery. The college admissions process can and should be fun. It is about finding a college/university that will foster your curiosity and growth while providing you with opportunities and support. I am here to guide and support you through the process.

Boston University

Hey there! My name is Sue and I have been in the higher ed realm for 7 years now. I received my undergraduate degrees from Boston University, majoring in International Relations and Sculpture. I am currently working on an MS in Data Analytics and Policy from Johns Hopkins University. During the day I work as an Assistant Director of Diversity Recruiting at the Yale School of Management. I just moved to Connecticut and am enjoying being back in my native New England! In my spare time I go to museums and train my dachshund puppy, Papaya, to be a good girl.

Also Accepted to

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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Liyuan Zhang

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