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Howard University: Academics, Admissions & Tuition Info

Research Howard University in Washington, DC. Learn about its admission info, degree programs and financial aid to make an informed education decision.

About Howard University

Howard University is located in northwestern Washington, DC, near the White House and the Capitol Building. Founded in 1867, the school was established as a one-building campus; its main campus has now grown to 115 buildings situated on 258 acres. In addition, there are now four satellite campuses and research facilities.

Howard University is home to the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center, a library showcasing and preserving African-American culture and history through collections of various resources, including letters, pamphlets, and private libraries. Alumni of this historically Black university include Thurgood Marshall, the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice; Toni Morrison, Nobel laureate and Pulitzer Prize-winning author; and Alain Locke, Sterling Brown, John Hope Franklin, Ralph Bunche, Frank Snowden, E. Franklin Frazier, David Blackwell, Percy Julian, David Dinkins, Jessye Norman, and Shirley Franklin.


Howard University offered 26 undergraduate, 16 master's, four doctoral, and five first professional degree programs through 13 colleges and schools in 2011. Colleges and schools include the College of Arts and Sciences; College of Medicine; College of Pharmacy, Nursing and Allied Health Sciences; College of Dentistry; School of Business; School of Divinity; and School of Law. The College of Arts and Sciences is the largest among the 13, home to four academic divisions and 21 degree programs; it also has historically had the highest student enrollment.

Students can participate in study abroad and ROTC programs as well as numerous opportunities for community service through health education and clinical programs, career counseling, and recreation programs, among others.

Less than 10% of Howard University students are local to the area; about three-quarters of the student body come from other states, and slightly more than 10% are international students.


The application process for undergraduates requires prospective students to submit an application with a $45 application fee, although some programs also require an interview, audition or portfolio. An official high school transcript or GED certificate is required, along with SAT or ACT test scores. In addition, Howard University requires applicants to submit a letter of recommendation from a counselor, a letter of recommendation from a teacher, and an essay. These items are considered in addition to the applicant's grade point average, class rank, and extracurricular activities. Students may earn college credit for AP scores and participation in the IB (International Baccalaureate) program.

The school offers early decisions to applicants who apply by November 1; they'll receive notification by late December. Early decision applicants have the option of including a resume with their application materials. The regular decision deadline is February 15, with notification by the middle of April. Spring semester applications are due November 1 of the year before.

Tuition & Financial Aid

As a private higher-learning institution, tuition costs are not dependent on state residency. In 2011-2012, tuition for undergraduate students was $19,150 for the academic year. The graduate tuition rate was $25,295. Tuition at Howard University's professional schools varied from this graduate rate. Additional costs include mandatory fees, books and supplies, housing, and transportation expenses.

Co-ed and single-sex residence halls are available. The school encourages freshmen to live on-campus. Room rates vary by layout and residence hall choice, some of which also require purchase of a meal plan; room rates for 2012-2013 range from $2,304-$4,660. Upperclassmen and graduate students also have apartment-style residence options.

Howard University reported that in 2010-2011, almost 90% of undergraduate and graduate students received some kind of financial aid. Types of financial aid available include grants, scholarships, student loans, and part-time work. Howard University offers an installment payment plan for students.

School Type 4-year, private nonprofit**
Degrees Offered Bachelor's degrees, postbaccalaureate certificate, master's degrees, post-master's certificate, and doctoral degrees (professional and research)**
Religious Affiliation None**
Academic Calendar Semester***
School Setting Large city**
Student Body 7,144 undergraduates, 3,439 graduate students (Fall 2011)**
Student Housing Nine residence halls*
Schools and Programs 13 colleges and schools offering 26 undergraduate, 16 master's, four doctoral, and five first professional degree programs (2011)*
Student-Faculty Ratio 10 to 1**
Most Popular Fields of Study by Degree Level (Number of Recipients) In 2010:
Bachelor's: Journalism (121)
Master's: Social Work (111)
Doctoral: Law (165)**
2011 Undergraduate Graduation Rates 45% in four years
63% in six years**
Admission Rate 54% (Fall 2010)**
Entering Class Size 1,486 (Fall 2010)***
First-Year Retention Rates 83%**
Average SAT Score of Admitted Students Middle 50% SAT scores: 480-580 in critical reading, 470-570 in math, 460-570 in writing (Fall 2010)**
Application Due Date February 15*
Decision Notification Date Mid-April*
Tuition $19,150 (undergraduate; 2011-2012)*
Financial Aid Sources Available (Percent of Students Receiving it) In 2010-2011, for full-time, first-time undergraduates: federal grants (44%), Pell grants (43%), other federal grants (23%), state and local grants/scholarships (4%), institutional grants/scholarships (53%), federal loans (69%)**
Percent of Students Receiving Some Form of Aid 89% (full-time, first-time undergraduates in 2010-2011)*

Sources: *Howard University, **College Navigator, National Center for Education Statistics, ***IPEDS, National Center for Education Statistics.

School Contact Information

  • Address: Enrollment Management/Admission, Howard University, 2400 Sixth Street NW, Washington, DC 20059
  • Phone: (202) 806-2763
  • Website:

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