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University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA

Research the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA. Learn about its admission requirements, degree and certificate programs and financial aid to make an informed education decision.

About University of Pennsylvania

The University of Pennsylvania, often known as UPenn or Penn, is located in the University City neighborhood of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. UPenn is a private, Ivy League university that was established in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin. In 2011, the University of Pennsylvania was sixth in Kiplinger's Best Values in Private Universities.


The university offers 294 undergraduate, graduate and professional programs through its 12 schools. Along with traditional degree programs, several of UPenn's schools offer distance learning through online courses and continuing education programs for adult students. The university has several options for interdisciplinary study with its minors and dual degree programs.

Students at the university can also study abroad through the international internship program. Along with the main library, UPenn has 22 specialty libraries and information commons. The campus also has a center for the performing arts, student performing arts house, institute of contemporary art, gallery, writers' house, museum of archaeology and anthropology and public radio station run by the university.


Applicants must complete the Common Application and UPenn's supplemental form. Additionally, applicants must submit SAT/ACT scores, official high school transcripts, two academic letters of recommendation and one counselor letter, a secondary school report and mid-year report. Applicants to the fine arts, music and digital media design programs are encouraged to submit portfolios along with their application.

Freshman undergraduate admission has an early decision deadline of November 1st and a regular deadline of January 1st. There is an application fee of $75, which can be waived through the submission and approval of a fee waiver request with the student's application.

Tuition & Financial Aid

The total for undergraduate tuition and fees for the 2012-13 school year was $43,738. Additional costs for students living on campus were $7,952 for housing and $4,416 for a meal plan. UPenn recommends students budget around $1,200 a year for books and $2,300 for personal expenses, making the total estimated cost of attendance $59,600.

Students wishing to pay their balance over time can enroll in UPenn's interest-free budget plan, which spreads payments over ten months. The university itself awards grants and work-study, but has committed to a no-loan policy. Students can take out loans themselves for the payment of their expected financial contribution.

School Type Private, four-year*
Degrees Offered Certificates, associate's, bachelor's, master's, doctorates*
Religious Affiliation None**
Academic Calendar Semesters with summer sessions*
School Setting Urban*
Student Body 24,832 in 2011*
Student Housing 11 college houses and 2 university-run apartment buildings*
Schools and Programs 12 schools, 294 programs*
Student-Faculty Ratio 6 to 1*
Most Popular Fields of Study by Degree Level (Number of Recipients) In 2010-11: Bachelor's: business, management, & marketing (637); Master's: business, management, & marketing (985), education (477); Doctorate: health professions (413), law (274)**
Graduation Rates (Students Beginning Study in 2005) 87% in four years, 96% in six years of normal completion time**
Admission Rate 12%**
Entering Class 2,459 in 2011*
First-Year Retention Rates (Full-Time) 97% from Fall 2010 to Fall 2011**
Median SAT Scores of Admitted Students For 2011: 720, Reading; 740, Math; 740, Writing*
Application Due Date January 1, 2013 for Fall 2013*
Decision Notification Date March 28, 2013 for Fall 2013*
Tuition $39,088 for the academic year in 2012-13*
Financial Aid Sources Available (Percentage of Beginning Undergraduate Students Receiving It) In 2010-11: Federal grants (17%), state and local grants/scholarships (6%), institutional grants/scholarships (48%), federal loans (28%), other loans (1%)**
Percent of Beginning Undergraduate Students Receiving Some Form of Aid 63% in 2010-11**

Sources: *University of Pennsylvania; **NCES' College Navigator.

School Contact Information

  • Address: 1 College Hall, Room 1, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6376
  • Phone: (215) 898-7507
  • Website:

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