Boston University Pros And Cons [What Do You Need To Know Before Applying To Boston University?]

Boston University is a four-year, private university located on the Charles River in Boston, Massachusetts. The university first opened its doors to students in 1839 as a men’s college and became coeducational in 1974. Boston University has more than 33,000 students enrolled at the school and offers over 450 student organizations that give students many ways to get involved on campus.

Everything You Need To Know About Boston University

It is situated just across the river from the city of Boston and has six colleges: Business Administration; Communication; Education; Fine Arts; Health and Rehabilitation; and General Studies. It also houses several research centers including the Centers of Excellence and Institutes for Medicine and Public Health (CEMPH).

The campus is very urban with most buildings being in close proximity to each other. Many of the buildings are located around the main quad, which is located between Bay State Road and Commonwealth Avenue.

Boston University also has several libraries on campus including the Mugar Memorial Library which is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Libraries are great places for students who want to get more involved on campus and different libraries have different events available. For example, the Mugar Memorial Library has a coffee shop it called the “Grounds of Being.” There are several clubs that meet at these types of cafes that are perfect for high school students to get involved in because it gives them the opportunity to meet other students with similar interests.

Students who are looking for opportunities to get involved right away will find many of them through clubs and organizations available at Boston University, but they might also want to look at clubs not related directly to BU in order to branch out. Some local clubs include the DND Hiking Club, which takes students on two hiking trips every year that are fun ways to get involved outside of school. The Co-Ed Ultimate Frisbee Club often hosts tournaments that take place during Spring Break.

Pros Of Boston University:

1. Plenty of opportunities to get involved on campus

2. Many different types of clubs and organizations are available

3. The career Center offers students many resources for job searching after college graduation.

Cons Of Boston University:

1. Many students live off campus leading to a lack of school spirit.

2. Campus is not very walkable if a student does not have a car or uses public transportation. It can be challenging to get from place to place without walking 15 minutes or more each way. Students should consider this before going here because it can make getting around difficult, especially in the winter months when there is snow covering sidewalks and roads.

What Do You Need To Know Before Applying To Boston University?

1. Tuition is $43,654 without room and board.

2. Boston University also requires a supplementary admission application fee of $80.

3. The average GPA for accepted students is 3.4-3.7, based on the last three years of high school transcripts. The average SAT score range from 1020-1250, but if a student has multiple scores reported during the senior year they should use the highest one rather than an average score range as taken from CollegeBoard’s website. Students should note that there is no preference given to in-state applicants, but Boston University does offer a partial tuition waiver for Massachusetts residents who are accepted into the university and choose to attend. Students should consider this before applying because it usually takes about two years to earn a degree at BU.

4. Students who apply for merit-based scholarships will also need SAT or ACT scores, high school transcripts, and three letters of recommendation sent directly to the scholarship department. The deadline to apply for merit-based scholarships is December 4th every year. (For more information, visit Apply for Scholarships .) The deadline to apply for need-based aid is November 1st every year. The application itself must be filled out online through FastTrack beginning October 15th every year, but students can take the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE test as soon as they are ready during the major testing season which begins in September every year.

5. Boston University is one of the most prestigious universities in New England, but not every student who applies will be admitted. If a student has any questions or needs help with the application process, financial aid, or looking for scholarships they should contact the Office of Undergraduate Admission at 617-353-2300. There are also representatives available to meet students face-to-face during several visits each year including early decision information sessions held each fall and regular decision information sessions held each spring.

6. Students can also access online guides which include an admissions checklist, instructions for how to complete the Common Application, instructions on how to submit their materials electronically, instructions on submitting their transcripts, instructions about applying for merit-based scholarships, and much more.

7. Once admitted, students can get help with paying for school through the financial aid office. Students will need to fill out a FAFSA form and possibly three other forms which are available online, but before they do so they should read Boston University’s explanation of how to fill them out, what documents they will need, and what information is required.

8. Students who have questions about applying for financial aid or receiving their scholarship awards after being admitted into BU should contact the Office of Financial Aid at 617-353-2186.

9. The average GPA for accepted students is 3.4-3.7 based on high school transcripts from the last three years, but if a student has multiple scores reported during their senior year then they should use the highest score rather than an average score range.

10. Students should note that there is no preference given to in-state applicants but regional admission counselors are available to answer any questions they may have about applying for in-state tuition rates, applying for financial aid, and the admissions process.

11. The application deadline for regular decisions is January 1st every year.

12. SAT scores are not required if a student has taken the ACT during their junior year of high school testing.

13. There are several merit-based scholarships awarded each year including the Presidential Scholarship which awards up to $20,000 per year depending on how well students do during their freshman year at BU, the Dean’s Scholarship which awards up to $15,000 per year, or anyone of nine different scholarships which can be awarded ranging from $1,000-$8,000 per year. (For more information on all of these scholarships, visit the Scholarships Home Page .) BU also offers need-based financial aid including grants and loans. Students must fill out a CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE test to receive any need-based aid.

14. Students who are interested in learning about Boston University’s undergraduate degree programs should refer to the Program Grid, where all of Boston University’s academic degree programs are listed by their respective departments.

15. There is an online undergraduate degree program handbook that gives students information regarding requirements for each major that they choose to pursue as well as descriptions of tracks offered within some majors.

16. Students should note that most buildings Boston University students study in are connected via an underground tunnel complex that is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The only portion of the university that does not have tunnels connecting it to other buildings is the residence halls.

17. Boston University has many different organizations for students to join including special interest groups, athletic teams/clubs, Greek life, faith-based groups, music ensembles, student media outlets, service-oriented clubs, political groups, and more.


Students who want to attend a college with a low student-to-faculty ratio, excellent academics, and many different opportunities to get involved would be wise to consider applying for Boston University. It has been named as one of the top 100 colleges in the country by U.S. News & World Report and is ranked among the Forbes Magazine Best Colleges. The university’s location in Boston gives students easy access to many cultural events including the theater, art museums, an aquarium, professional sports teams, concerts, lectures/debates/forums hosted at universities throughout greater Boston, sporting events held at Fenway Park, etc., etc. BU has over 350 undergraduate majors with programs that are both creative and innovative.

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