American University

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In 1892 a Methodist Bishop established American University (AU or American) in Washington, D.C. Today it has a vibrant, liberal arts curriculum, and is also a research-based university, providing education for over 12,000 students through a myriad of graduate and undergraduate programs housed in seven different schools. American University is among the best schools in the nation in fields of international relations, and government and political science. It also serves as a center for the arts in Washington, D.C.

Degree Programs

AU’s programs are administered through seven colleges: The College of Arts and Sciences; The School of Communication; The School of Public Affairs; the Kogod School of Business; The School of International Service; the Washington College of Law; and the School of Professional & Extended Studies. These schools contain 61 different bachelor’s degrees, with 54 master’s degrees, 11 doctorate degrees, and a JD program. There are an additional 50 graduate and undergraduate certificate programs. In addition to these options, students have the exciting opportunity to participate in any of 145 study abroad programs, spanning 44 countries on 6 continents.


AU as a whole has received accreditation by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, and is recognized by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church. Many of the school’s colleges are accredited by prestigious entities such as the American Chemical Society, The Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification, and the American Bar Association. These bodies extend accreditation to the Department of Chemistry, the School of Communication, the Kogod School of Business, the School of Education, and the Washington College of Law respectively.


AU’s athletic teams are known as the Eagles, and play in Division I of the NCAA in many different athletic areas, including basketball, soccer, swimming & diving, cross-country, women’s volleyball, wrestling, rugby, field hockey, lacrosse, rowing, ice hockey, and ultimate Frisbee.

Library System

AU is home to the Jack I. and Dorothy G. Bender Library and Learning Resources Center, as well as a branch music Library, found in the Katzen Art Center. The Bender Library offers an array of study spaces for both private study, and group collaborative study. The library also houses a Curriculum Materials Center, a Graduate Research Center, a New Media Center, various classrooms, and a café. There are over 150 public computer stations in the library, with laptops, tablets, and other electronic devices available for loan to library patrons.


American University has repeatedly made appearances in some of the top publications in the US, including The Princeton Review Best Colleges in 2014, where it was rated #4 for the “Most Politically Active Students”. The publication’s Green Rating Honor Roll also recognized AU in 2014. The U.S. News & World Report ranked AU as 75th overall in the nation in their 2014 rankings list.

Specific colleges and programs within the greater AU infrastructure have been extensively recognized throughout rankings and publications in the last few years. The College of Arts and Sciences has earned nationally recognized rankings in education, creative writing, history, economics, theater, and musical theater. The U.S. News & World Report and the Bloomberg Business Week have repeatedly recognized the Kogod School of Business as one of the best for International business. Bloomberg Business Week rated it 23rd for best “International Business Specialty” and 62nd “Best Undergraduate Business School.” The School of International Service was rated 8th best in graduate programs and 10th best for undergraduate programs by Foreign Policy magazine. Other AU schools which have been nationally recognized include the School of Public Affairs, the School of Communication, and the Washington College of Law.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Students at AU can explore several different options for financing their education, including scholarships, grants, loans, student work options, Veterans Benefits, and other types of aid. Scholarships are awarded for varying levels and types of merit, including the Frederick Douglass Distinguished Scholars Program.

Student Housing

On-campus housing is made up of six residence halls, two suite-style complexes, and one apartment building. AU does not have specific housing available for graduate students, but has available resources to assist students in finding suitable off campus housing.

General Information

Admission Office
4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016-8001
(202) 885-6000
Fax: (202) 885-6014
[email protected]
Contact: Greg Grauman
Director of Admissions
Main Address
4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016-8001
(202) 885-1000
Total undergrads: 6,311
First-time degree-seeking freshmen: 1,577
Degree-seeking undergrads: 6,028
Graduate enrollment: 3,912

Suburban setting
Very large city (over 500,000)
Residential campus
Degrees offered:
First Professional

Admissions Information

Application Fee
College has an application fee: Yes
Regular application fee: $60
Online application fee: Free
Enrollment Rates
Percent applicants admitted: 53%
Percent students who return sophomore year: 88%

College Majors

Area, Ethnic, Cultural, & Gender Studies
American Studies B
Arab, Asian, European, and Multi-Ethnic Studies C
French Studies B
German Studies B
Latin American Studies B
Russian/Slavic Area Studies B
Women’s Studies B,C

Arts, Visual & Performing
Art – General B
Art History/Criticism/Conservation B
Arts – General B
Design/Visual Communications B
Drama/Theater Arts B
Film Production/Cinematography B
Film Studies B
Fine/Studio Arts B
Graphic Design B
Multimedia B
Music – General B
Music – General Performance B
Music History/Literature B
Music Theory/Composition B

Biological & Biomedical Sciences
Biochemistry B
Biology B
Environmental Biology B
Marine/Aquatic Biology B

Business, Management, & Marketing
Accounting B
Business Administration/Management B
Finance/Banking B
Management Information Systems B

Communications & Journalism
Journalism B
Mass Communications/Media Studies B
Public Relations B
Radio/Television B

Communications Technologies
Animation/Special Effects B
Recording Arts Technology B

Computer & Information Sciences
Computer Graphics B
Computer Science B
Computer/Information Sciences – General B

Elementary Education B
Secondary Education B

English Language & Literature
English Language & Literature – General B

Foreign Language & Literature
French B
German B
Language Interpretation/Translation C
Russian B
Spanish B

Health Professions & Clinical Sciences
Predentistry B
Premedicine B
Prenursing B
Prepharmacy B
Preveterinary Medicine B

History – General B

Law & Legal Studies
Law & Legal Studies – General B
Prelaw B

Liberal Arts & Sciences
Liberal Arts & Sciences B

Applied Mathematics B
Applied statistics C
Mathematics – General B
Statistics B

Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies
Biological/Physical Sciences B
Global Studies B

Natural Resources & Conservation
Environmental Studies B

Parks, Recreation & Fitness
Health/Physical Fitness B
Sport/Fitness Administration B,C

Philosophy & Religion
Jewish/Judaic Studies B
Philosophy B

Physical Sciences
Acoustics B
Chemistry B
Physics B

Psychology – General B

Security & Protective Services
Criminal Justice Studies B
Police Science B

Social Sciences
Anthropology B
Economics B
International Relations B
Political Science/Government B
Sociology B

Degree levels for each major are designated by the following letters:
    A = Associate degree
    B = Bachelor’s degree
    C = Certificate or diploma

*We do not guarantee the accuracy of information on this page. All information is subject to change. You should confirm all information with a college admissions officer.

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