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REQUIREMENTS AND CAMPUS GUIDE

Stanford University

Stanford University was founded in 1885 by California Senator Leland Stanford and his wife, Jane. Today, the university is known as one of the most prestigious universities in the nation; it is consistently ranked as a top ten school by U.S. News and World Report, ranking third in 2024. Nestled between San Francisco and San Jose, Stanford is located in the heart of Silicon Valley, an area known for its innovative spirit, beautiful landscapes, and mild weather. The university is known for its world-class academics, cutting-edge research, and vibrant campus.

REQUIREMENTS AND CAMPUS GUIDE

Stanford University

Stanford University was founded in 1885 by California Senator Leland Stanford and his wife, Jane. Today, the university is known as one of the most prestigious universities in the nation; it is consistently ranked as a top ten school by U.S. News and World Report, ranking third in 2024. Nestled between San Francisco and San Jose, Stanford is located in the heart of Silicon Valley, an area known for its innovative spirit, beautiful landscapes, and mild weather. The university is known for its world-class academics, cutting-edge research, and vibrant campus.

REQUIREMENTS AND CAMPUS GUIDE

Stanford University

Stanford University was founded in 1885 by California Senator Leland Stanford and his wife, Jane. Today, the university is known as one of the most prestigious universities in the nation; it is consistently ranked as a top ten school by U.S. News and World Report, ranking third in 2024. Nestled between San Francisco and San Jose, Stanford is located in the heart of Silicon Valley, an area known for its innovative spirit, beautiful landscapes, and mild weather. The university is known for its world-class academics, cutting-edge research, and vibrant campus.

School Location

STANFORD, CA

School Type:

PRIVATE RESEARCH UNIVERSITY

Admissions Rates:

ADMITTED: 3.91%

GENERAL INFO

SAT/ACT Score

Test Optional for 2024-2025
Admission Cycle

Class of 2027 Test Scores:
Middle 50% SAT:
1500-1560
Middle 50% ACT: 34-35

Dates/Deadlines

Restrictive Early Action: October 15
Priority/Regular/Rolling Deadline:
January 5
Regular Results: Late March

School Information

Undergraduate population:
9,274
Faculty Ratio: 6:1
Most Important Factor for Admissions Decisions:
NA
Interviews Considered:
Yes

STANFORD TIPS & GUIDE

How difficult is it to get into Stanford?

Stanford University is an incredibly selective school, and as such, all students should consider it a “high reach” school, no matter their academic stats and applicant profiles. Of the 53,733 students who applied to be admitted to Stanford’s Class of 2027, 2099 were admitted, yielding an acceptance rate of just 3.9%. Students applying to Stanford should work hard in school to earn top grades and to demonstrate great character, as Stanford reports that rigor of courses. GPA, class rank, recommendations, and application essays are very important in their admissions considerations. Nonacademic factors such as talent, character, and extracurricular activities are also very important to the Stanford admissions committee. If you’re undeterred by a low admission rate, read on to learn more about Stanford and its admissions process!

What is the campus like at Stanford?

Stanford is fondly referred to as “the Farm” by its many alumni because before the formation of the university, the campus was used as a family farm, housing the Stanford’s horses. Now, over a hundred years later, you can still see remnants of the time gone by, and horses are still stabled in the foothills of campus. Stanford, CA is directly adjacent to Palo Alto, so any time you step off campus you’re technically setting foot in a new city, though you’d never know it.

Stanford has a sprawling campus of 8,180 acres. The campus is replete with natural scenery, with everything from lakes, to creaks, to hills that students can hike—all without leaving campus.

Approximately 8,000 undergraduate students call Stanford home. Of these 8,000, 97% choose to live on-campus in undergraduate student housing, which is guaranteed to students for all four years of their undergraduate studies. This results in a tight knit community at Stanford. There are plenty of opportunities to join one of the 600+ organized student groups, of which 30 are religious organizations and over 100 are committed to the arts. Many students choose to live in a culturally themed house, join a club sports team, or do research at a lab. One in five undergraduate students join one of the 24 fraternities or sororities recognized on campus,

If you think you’re going to miss those home-cooked meals, don’t worry—the food on campus is great! There are multiple restaurants on campus ranging from take-out to upscale and the dining halls provide consistently delicious and healthy options for students. Stanford students take their academics very seriously, but they also pride themselves on being able to let loose and enjoy themselves–it is California after all!

How diverse is Stanford?

Stanford has a diverse student body: of the 8,054 undergraduate students attending Stanford in the fall of 2023, 924 or 11.5% were international, 1,486 or 18.5% were were Hispanic, 654 or 8.1% were Black of African American, 1,917 or 23.8% were white, 63 or .07% were American Indian or Alaska natives, 2,175 or 27% were Asian, and 19 were Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islanders.

How do I apply to Stanford?

Stanford offers two different application timelines: Restrictive Early Action (REA) and Regular Decision. Restrictive Early Action is non-binding, though students who apply through this application option may not apply to any other private college or university early, whether through early action, early decision, restrictive early action or other. That being said, students who apply REA to Stanford can apply to any other public university with a non-binding early application plan or deadline, or any other school with a non-binding rolling admissions. Stanford reports that the majority of admitted students apply regular decision.

Restrictive Early Action applications are due October 15th, and Regular Decision applications are due January 5th.

Students who wish to apply to Stanford must submit the following application components:

  • Common Application
  • $90 application fee
  • ACT or SAT test scores (optional for students applying in fall 2024; required for students applying in the fall of 2025)
  • School Report form
    Counselor letter of recommendation
  • Official transcript(s)
  • Two teacher letters of recommendation
  • Midyear transcript (due by February 15th)
  • Optional Arts Portfolio

What is Stanford known for?

Stanford is known as one of the top research universities in the world and a pioneer in the field of computer science. The university fuels the startup culture in Silicon Valley, and alumni work at nearly every major tech giant in the U.S. and beyond. Additionally, Stanford is known for its lively, creative, and wacky culture that is representative of the progressive San Francisco Bay Area.

Beyond its world-renowned academics, research opportunities, idyllic location and award winning athletics, the school is also known for its rich traditions, like fountain hopping on campus, the Wacky Walk, and Senior Dinner, among others.

Does Stanford have a good athletic department?

The Stanford Cardinals compete in 20 women’s Varsity sports and 16 men’s varsity sports in the NCAA. Women’s sports include artistic swimming, fencing, field hockey, lacrosse and rowing. Men’s varsity sports include fencing, football, wrestling and water polo, among others. While the football team and women’s basketball may receive the most press, Stanford has a storied history as a powerhouse in many sports such as baseball, swimming, golf, and tennis. Stanford athletes are particularly accomplished; the Cardinals have won 163 National championships and Stanford-affiliated athletes have won over 270 Olympic gold medals. Stanford has won at least one national championship annually for the past 46 years.

If you’re not interested in competing at the varsity level, you can get active by participating in one of Stanford’s Club sports or intramural sports, or break a sweat at one of Stanford’s numerous sports facilities, which offer access to climbing gyms, aquatic centers, tennis courts, golf courts, and other recreational facilities. If you’d rather find your spot in the bleachers, there’s always a game to attend on-campus with your classmates and you’ll usually be greeted by the famous Stanford Band in full force and maybe even the Stanford Tree!

What are Stanford’s core curriculum and programs?

Three of Stanford’s seven schools offer undergraduate degrees across 66 major fields; the School of Humanities and Sciences, Engineering and the Doerr School of Sustainability. Among the school’s unique major programs are the programs in Sustainable Architecture + Engineering; Science, Technology, and Society; Music, Science, and Technology; and MIddle Eastern Language, Literature and Culture. With a 6:1 student to faculty ratio, Stanford offers an intimate academic environment, allowing students the opportunity to forge strong relationships with their peers and professors as they explore their academic interests and complete their undergraduate course of study.

In order to graduate, students must complete writing and rhetoric courses, one year of foreign language, and Ways of Thinking/Ways of Doing general education requirements, in addition to COLLEGE, a Civic, Liberal, and Global Education requirement for first-year students. The core is designed to help students “develop a broad set of essential intellectual and social competencies of enduring value.”

Stanford also offers a variety of short- and long-term study abroad programs through the Bing Overseas Studies Program. Stanford estimates that 900 students study abroad annually!

Approximately one third of undergraduate students also participate in research using funding from the Office of the Vice Provost, which dedicates over $6.5 million to research annually.

Can I afford Stanford?

Like other private universities, the cost of attending Stanford can seem exorbitant at first glance. Stanford students who do not receive any form of financial aid will spend $92,892 on tuition, housing, food, fees, books, personal expenses, and travel during the 2024-2025 school year. Fortunately, Stanford provides some form of aid to about two thirds of its students. Fifty-eight percent of students receive scholarships, and nearly half receive need-based scholarships. Parents of students with incomes less than $150,000 with typical assets do not pay tuition, and parents with incomes less than $100,000 with typical assets pay no tuition or room and board. You can use the Net Price Calculator on Stanford’s financial aid website to estimate how much you can expect to pay as a Stanford undergraduate.

 

Updated 2024