Boston University

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School Overview

Boston University is commonly referred to as BU and is located in Boston, Massachusetts. As a private, research university, BU offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs, as well as medical and dental degrees. The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education designates BU as a “research university/very high activity” (RU/VH).

BU is comprised of 18 colleges and schools, divided between two campuses right in Boston. The main campus is in the Allston and Fenway-Kenmore neighborhoods, located on the banks of the Charles River. The University Medical Campus is located in the South End neighborhood. BU provides foreign and domestic internship programs as well as 75 study abroad programs in more than 20 countries around the world.

Historically, BU is affiliated with the United Methodist Church, but the school is officially non-sectarian. The student body population is roughly 30,000, and BU is one of the city’s largest employers.

Boston University’s athletic mascot is a Boston Terrier named Rhett. The Terriers compete in Division 1 of the NCAA, participating in conferences such as the Colonial Athletic Association, America East and Hockey East. The hockey program is the university’s most successful program, having won five national championships, the most recent of which was in 2009.

Boston University is a member of the Boston Consortium for Higher Education, as well as the Association of American Universities.

Boston University Online

Boston University offers online degrees. Explore Boston University online.

General Information

Admission Office
121 Bay State Road
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 353-2300
Fax: (617) 353-9695

Contact: Kelly Walter
Director, Office of Undergraduate Admissions
Main Address
One Sherbourne Street
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 353-2000

Total undergrads: 18,534
First-time degree-seeking freshmen: 4,131
Degree-seeking undergrads: 16,474
Graduate enrollment: 11,002

Urban 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: $75

Online application fee: $75
Enrollment Rates

Percent applicants admitted: 54%

Percent students who return sophomore year: 91%

Tuition & Fees

Estimated Expenses for Academic Year 2008-’09 2009-’10 2010-’11 2011-’12 % change 2010-’12
Tuition and fees $35,418 $37,050 $38,440 $39,864 +3.70%
Books and Supplies $840 $860 $940 $940 0.00%
Living Arrangement – On Campus
Room and Board $10,950 $11,418 $11,848 $12,260 +3.48%
Other $1,692 $1,772 $1,772 $1,772 0.00%
Living Arrangement – Off Campus
Room and Board $0 $0 $0 $0 0.00%
Other $0 $0 $0 $0 0.00%
Total Expenses 2008-’09 2009-’10 2010-’11 2011-’12 % change 2010-’12
In-state On Campus $48,900 $51,100 $53,000 $54,836 +3.46%
In-state Off Campus $36,258 $37,910 $39,380 $40,804 +3.62%
In-state with Family $36,258 $37,910 $39,380 $40,804 +3.62%
Average Graduate Student Tuition & Fees
Tuition for In-state Students $39,314
In-state Student Fees $402
Tuition for Out-of-state Students $39,314
Out-of-state Fees $402

Financial Aid

Full-time Beginning Undergraduate Students
Type of Aid Students Percent Amount Average Per Student
All students financial aid 2,614 63%
Grant or scholarship aid 2,283 55% $51,407,883 $22,518
• Federal grants 513 12% $2,991,228 $5,831
• Pell grants 469 11% $1,587,006 $3,384
• Other federal grants 506 12% $1,404,222 $2,775
State/local government grant or scholarships 270 7% $623,836 $2,311
Institutional grants or scholarships 2,224 54% $47,792,819 $21,490
Student loan aid 2,123 51% $16,789,901 $7,909
• Federal student loans 2,099 51% $10,602,304 $5,051
• Other student loans 386 9% $6,187,597 $16,030

All Degrees and Programs

Program Completions for Most Recent Year BA/BS MA/MS Doctor AA/AS CERT
Total of All Education Programs 4007 3786 1082 86
Architecture and Related Services 11
City/Urban, Community and Regional Planning 11
Area, Gender, Cultural, Ethnic, and Group Studies 15 5 3
African-American/Black Studies 3
American/United States Studies/Civilization 9
East Asian Studies 3
Italian Studies 1
Latin American Studies 2
Regional Studies (U.S., Canadian, Foreign) 2 3
Russian, Central European, East European and Eurasian Studies
Biology and Biomedical Sciences 294 313 89
Anatomy 2 2
Biochemistry 2 6
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 65
Bioinformatics 13 4
Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Other 196
Biology and Biological Sciences, General 144 3 13
Biophysics 1 4
Biostatistics 24 8
Biotechnology 7
Cell/Cellular and Molecular Biology 7
Cell/Cellular Biology and Anatomical Sciences, Other 4 5
Conservation Biology 11
Environmental Biology 7
Epidemiology 55 2
Genetics 5
Immunology 1
Marine Biology and Biological Oceanography 17
Medical Microbiology and Bacteriology 3
Molecular Biology 15 7
Neurobiology and Anatomy 4 8
Neuroscience 35 10
Pathology/Experimental Pathology 2 3
Pharmacology 1
Business, Administration, Management, Marketing, etc. 802 915 5
Actuarial Science 31
Banking and Financial Support Services 67
Business Administration and Management 690 554 5
Business Administration, Management and Operations, Other 146
Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services, Other 1
Financial Planning and Services 34
Hospitality Administration/Management 112
Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration 13
Insurance 18
International Marketing 1
Management Information Systems 50
Communication and Journalism Programs 623 148
Advertising 39
Broadcast Journalism 13
Health Communication 13
Journalism 171 35
Journalism, Other 13
Public Relations/Image Management 18
Radio and Television 125 17
Speech Communication and Rhetoric 327
Computing and Information Sciences 28 208 8
Computer Science 28 62 8
Computer Systems Networking and Telecommunications 3
Information Science/Studies 143
Education 101 443 25 7
Adult and Continuing Education and Teaching
Art Teacher Education 12
Bilingual and Multilingual Education 2
Chemistry Teacher Education
Counselor Education/School Counseling and Guidance Services 41 1
Curriculum and Instruction 2 4
Drama and Dance Teacher Education 3
Early Childhood Education and Teaching 7 1
Education/Teaching of Individuals with Hearing Impairments Including Deafness 3 17
Dentistry 221
Endodontics/Endodontology 3 12
Environmental Health 9 2
Genetic Counseling/Counselor 6
Health Professions and Related Clinical Sciences, Other 19
Health/Health Care Administration/Management 187 2
Kinesiotherapy/Kinesiotherapist 1
Maternal and Child Health 17 2
Medical Scientist
Medicine 153
Occupational Therapy/Therapist 41 6
Oral Biology and Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology 7 1
Oral/Maxillofacial Surgery 3
Orthodontics/Orthodontology 6 9
Pediatric Dentistry/Pedodontics 1 9
Periodontics/Periodontology 10
Physical Therapy/Therapist 60
Pre-Dentistry Studies 1
Pre-Medicine/Pre-Medical Studies 22
Prosthodontics/Prosthodontology 4 10
Radiologic Technology/Science – Radiographer 8
Rehabilitation and Therapeutic Professions, Other 91 4
Vocational Rehabilitation Counseling/Counselor
History 115 8 6
History 115 8 6
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Services 10 213
Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Administration 19
Criminal Justice/Safety Studies 10 171
Forensic Science and Technology 23
Human Services 165
Public Administration 33
Social Work 132
Legal and Law Studies 214 273
Banking, Corporate, Finance, and Securities Law 49
Law 273
Legal Assistant/Paralegal
Legal Research and Advanced Professional Studies, Other 2
Programs for Foreign Lawyers 88
Tax Law/Taxation 75
Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
Liberal Arts and Sciences/Liberal Studies
Mathematics and Statistics 44 72 8
Mathematics and Statistics, Other 69
Mathematics 44 3 8
Multi-/Interdisciplinary Studies 113 53 9
Ancient Studies/Civilization 8 1 1
Historic Preservation and Conservation 2
Multi-/Interdisciplinary Studies, Other 92 6 7
Museology/Museum Studies
Nutrition Sciences 13 23 1
Systems Science and Theory 21
Personal and Culinary Services 9
Culinary Arts and Related Services, Other 9
Physical Sciences 50 33 34
Astronomy 9 4 7
Chemistry 19 23 11
Chemistry, Other 3
Educational Leadership and Administration 44 6 2
Educational/Instructional Technology 6
Elementary Education and Teaching 34 8
English/Language Arts Teacher Education 9 10
Foreign Language Teacher Education 1 2
Health Teacher Education 7
International and Comparative Education 21
Latin Teacher Education 1 2
Mathematics Teacher Education 9 15
Music Teacher Education 4 154 13
Physical Education Teaching and Coaching 20 2
Reading Teacher Education 5
Science Teacher Education/General Science Teacher Education 3 4
Social Studies Teacher Education 20 12
Special Education and Teaching 8 21 1
Student Counseling and Personnel Services, Other 3 2 1
Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Subject Areas, Other 12
Teaching English as a Second or Foreign Language/ESL Language Instructor 21
Engineering 249 124 41
Aerospace, Aeronautical and Astronautical/Space Engineering 21 2
Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering 97 27 16
Computer Engineering 15 11 2
Computer Software Engineering 8 15
Electrical and Electronics Engineering 30 39 13
Engineering Mechanics
Engineering, Other
Manufacturing Engineering 11 8
Materials Engineering 2 3
Mechanical Engineering 67 17 5
Systems Engineering 3 2
English Language, Composition and Literature/Letters 113 36 7
Creative Writing 21
English Language and Literature 113 13 6
English Language and Literature/Letters, Other 2 1
Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics 70 8 3
Ancient/Classical Greek Language and Literature
Classics and Classical Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics 5
Comparative Literature
French Language and Literature 12 4
German Language and Literature 2
Italian Language and Literature
Japanese Language and Literature 5
Latin Language and Literature 2
Linguistics 27
Russian Language and Literature 2
Spanish Language and Literature 15 4 3
Health Services and Allied Health Sciences 185 328 450 69
Advanced General Dentistry 12
Advanced/Graduate Dentistry and Oral Sciences, Other 1 3
Athletic Training/Trainer 17
Audiology/Audiologist and Speech-Language Pathology/Pathologist 13 34
Clinical/Medical Laboratory Technician 21
Dental Clinical Sciences
Dental Laboratory Technology/Technician
Dental Public Health and Education 4
Geological and Earth Sciences/Geosciences, Other 1
Geology and Earth Science 6 1 3
Geophysics and Seismology 2
Hydrology and Water Resources Science
Physics 11 4 13
Psychology 258 83 19
Clinical Psychology 28
Cognitive Psychology and Psycholinguistics 3 4
Counseling Psychology 3
Psychology 258 52 12
Social Sciences 731 197 35
Anthropology 38 2 2
Archaeology 22 2 1
Development Economics and International Development 13
Economics 160 83 17
Economics, Other 4
Geography 5 1 2
International Relations and Affairs 282 41
Political Science and Government 127 5 8
Social Sciences 39 1
Social Sciences, Other 28
Sociology 66 1 4
Urban Studies/Affairs 3 6
Theology and Religious Vocations 20 32
Bible/Biblical Studies 11 2
Religious/Sacred Music 3
Theology/Theological Studies 6 30
Visual and Performing Arts 206 180 35 10
Acting 22
Art History, Criticism and Conservation 50 12 5
Cinematography and Film/Video Production 37
Conducting 2 2
Directing and Theatrical Production 4 7
Drama and Dramatics/Theater Arts 24
Fine and Studio Arts Management 35
Graphic Design 28 12
Keyboard Instruments 1 3 4
Music History, Literature, and Theory
Music Performance 8 21 6 2
Music Theory and Composition 3 3
Music 6 2
Musicology and Ethnomusicology 1 3
Painting 23 15
Sculpture 6 4
Stringed Instruments 5 11 13 1
Technical Theater/Theater Design and Technology 14 5
Visual and Performing Arts
Voice and Opera 14 8 2 7
Above data represent first majors only.
(-) Indicates that program is not offered at this award level.

Undergraduate Majors

Area, Ethnic, Cultural, & Gender Studies

American Studies B
East Asian Studies B
Italian Studies B
Latin American Studies B
Russian/Slavic Area Studies B

Arts, Visual & Performing

Acting B
Art History/Criticism/Conservation B
Arts – General B
Commercial/Advertising Art B
Directing/Theatrical Production B
Drawing B
Film Production/Cinematography B
Music – General Performance B
Music – Piano/Organ B
Music – Voice/Opera B
Music History/Literature B
Music Theory/Composition B
Painting B
Sculpture B
Theater Design/Stagecraft B
Theater Literature/History/Criticism B

Biological & Biomedical Sciences

Biochemistry B
Biology B
Ecology B
Marine/Aquatic Biology B
Molecular Biology B

Business, Management, & Marketing

Accounting B
Business Administration/Management B
Entrepreneurial Studies B
Finance/Banking B
Hospitality Administration/Management B
International Business B
International Finance B
Management Information Systems B
Marketing Management B
Marketing Research B
Operations Management B
Organizational Behavior Studies B

Communications & Journalism

Advertising B
Broadcast Journalism B
Communications/Rhetoric B
Journalism B
Public Relations B

Computer & Information Sciences

Computer/Information Sciences – General B


Art Teacher Education B
Bilingual/Bicultural Education B
Chemistry Teacher Education B
Drama/Dance Teacher Education B
Early Childhood Education B
Education – General B
Education of Deaf/Hearing Impaired B
Elementary Education B
English Teacher Education B
Mathematics Education B
Music Teacher Education B
Physical Education B
Science Teacher Education B
Social Studies Teacher Education B
Special Education B


Aeronautical/Aerospace Engineering B
Biomedical Engineering B
Computer Engineering – General B
Electrical/Communications Engineering B
Engineering – General B
Mechanical Engineering B

English Language & Literature

English Language & Literature – General B

Foreign Language & Literature

Classics B
Foreign Language & Literature – General B
French B
German B
Greek, Ancient B
Greek, Modern B
Italian B
Latin B
Linguistics B
Russian B
Spanish B

Health Professions & Clinical Sciences

Athletic Training/Sports Medicine B
Communication Disorders B
Dental Laboratory Technology B


History – General B

Law & Legal Studies

Legal Administrative Assistance B
Paralegal/Legal Assistance B


Mathematics – General B

Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies

Mathematics/Computer Science B
Neuroscience B
Nutrition Sciences B

Natural Resources & Conservation

Environmental Science B
Environmental Studies B
Natural Resources & Conservation – General B
Natural Resources Management/Policy B

Parks, Recreation & Fitness

Exercise Sciences B

Philosophy & Religion

Philosophy B
Religion/Religious Studies B

Physical Sciences

Astronomy B
Astrophysics B
Chemistry B
Geology B
Geophysics/Seismology B
Physics B
Planetary Sciences B


Psychology – General B

Social Sciences

Anthropology B
Archaeology B
Economics B
Geography B
International Relations B
Political Science/Government B
Sociology B
Urban Studies 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.

Boston University Highlights

School Information

Phone Number:(617) 353-2000
Type of School:4-year, Private non-profit
Address:One Silber Way, Boston, MA 02215
Setting:Rural: Distant
Campus Housing:Yes

Students & Programs

Student Population:32,695
6-yr Graduation Rate (Bachelor's):84%
Student-to-faculty Ratio:10 to 1
Distance Learning Programs:Yes
Distance Learning Students*:29,701 (91% of total students)
Degree Levels Offered:Certificates, Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorate

* Students taking at least 1 distance learning course

Tuition & Financial Aid*

In-state Tuition:$50,240
Out-of-state Tuition:$50,240
% of Students Receiving Financial Aid:54%
Avg. Amount of Grant or Scholarship Aid Awarded:$34,255

* Full-time beginning undergraduate students

Boston University Programs

See the degree programs that are offered at Boston University.

Degree NameCertAssocBachMastDoct
Architecture and Related Services11
Area, Ethnic, Cultural, Gender, and Group Studies3831
Biological and Biomedical Sciences381721
Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services113122
Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs49
Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services4141
Engineering Technologies and Engineering-related Fields1
English Language and Literature/Letters1132
Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics1532
Health Professions and Related Programs21122217
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting, and Related Protective Service113
Legal Professions and Studies15
Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities1
Mathematics and Statistics1132
Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies2463
Personal and Culinary Services1
Philosophy and Religious Studies222
Physical Sciences654
Public Administration and Social Service Professions42
Social Sciences29127
Theology and Religious Vocations132
Visual and Performing Arts717186
Grand total9112217589

* Based on programs that produced 2016-2017 graduates

Online Programs & Distance Learning

See the distance education degree programs that are offered at Boston University.

Degree NameCertAssocBachMastDoct
Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services7
Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs1
Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services2
Health Professions and Related Programs12
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting, and Related Protective Service1
Legal Professions and Studies2
Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies1
Public Administration and Social Service Professions1
Grand total12163

* Based on programs that produced 2016-2017 graduates

Tuition & Financial Aid

See what it costs to enroll at Boston University and how many students are receiving scholarships, grants, or loans as financial aid to help cover the costs of tuition.

Undergraduate Student Tuition

Average tuition and fees for academic year:

Tuition and Fees2016-2017
Books and supplies$1,000

Graduate Student Tuition

Average tuition and fees for academic year:

Tuition and Fees2016-2017

Undergraduate Student Financial Aid, 2015-2016

Full-time Beginning Undergraduate Students

Type of AidNumber Receiving Aid% Receiving AidAvg. Amt. of Aid
Any student financial aid1,97654%
Grant or scholarship aid1,69547%$34,255
Student loan aid1,46940%$9,652

All Undergraduate Students

Type of AidNumber Receiving Aid% Receiving AidAvg. Amt. of Aid
Grant or scholarship aid8,26646%$29,934
Federal student loans6,55537%$7,267

Admissions & Enrollment

See the admission requirements for Boston University. Find out how many students apply and how many are accepted. View a graphical breakdown of the gender, age, and ethnicity of currently enrolled Boston University students.

Undergraduate Admissions, Fall 2017

Number of applicants57,44123,95033,491
Percent admitted100%28%31%
Percent admitted who enrolled6%6%6%

Admissions Considerations

Secondary school GPA
Secondary school rank
Secondary school record
Completion of college-preparatory program
Formal demonstration of competencies
Admission test scores
Other Test (Wonderlic, WISC-III, etc.)
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language

Boston University Enrollment, Fall 2017

Total Enrollment32,695
Undergraduate enrollment17,944
Graduate enrollment14,751

Undergraduate Attendance

Undergraduate Gender

Undergraduate Age

Undergraduate Race/Ethnicity

Undergraduate Distance Education

Undergraduates taking 100%, Some, or No Distance Education

Graduate Distance Education

Graduate students taking 100%, Some, or No Distance Education

Boston University Accreditation

This institution is accredited by New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education

Specialized institution accreditations:

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics
    • Didactic Program in Dietetics
    • Didactic Program in Dietetics (Department of Health Sciences)
  • Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education
    • Nurse Midwifery (MIDWF) - Basic certificate and graduate nurse-midwifery education programs for registered nurses
  • American Bar Association, Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar
    • Law (LAW) - Professional schools
  • American Dental Association, Commission on Dental Accreditation
    • Dental Public Health
    • Endodontics
    • Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology- (OMP)
    • Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology- (OMP)
    • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (OMS)
    • Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics
    • Pediatric Dentistry
    • Periodontics
    • Prosthodontics (including maxillofacial prosthetics and combined prosthodontics/maxillofacial prosthetics)
  • American Occupational Therapy Association, Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education
    • Occupational Therapy (OT) - Professional Programs
    • Occupational Therapy (OTM) - Programs leading to a Master's Degree
  • American Physical Therapy Association, Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education
    • Physical Therapy (PT) - Professional programs for the physical therapist
  • American Psychological Association, Commission on Accreditation
    • Clinical Psychology (CLPSY) - PhD Doctoral programs
  • American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology
    • Audiology (AUD) - Graduate degree programs
    • Clinical doctoral program in Audiology
    • Speech-Language Pathology (SLP) - Graduate degree programs
  • Commission on Accrediting of the Association of Theological Schools
    • Theology (THEOL) - Freestanding schools, as well as programs affiliated with larger institutions, offering graduate professional education for ministry and graduate study of theology
  • Commission on English Language Program Accreditation
    • English Language (Center for English Language and Orientation Programs (CELOP))
  • Council on Education for Public Health
    • Public Health (PHG) - Graduate level school of public health
  • Liaison Committee on Medical Education
    • Medicine (MED) - Programs leading to the M.D. degree
  • National Association of Schools of Music, Commission on Accreditation
    • Music (MUS) - Institutions and units within institutions offering degree-granting and/or non-degree-granting programs

*General information for this school has been gathered from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) database, a service provided by the U.S. Department of Education. does 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.

If you work for a school and would like to update your data please contact us.

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