Students looking up in a classroom

We look at your whole picture — inside and outside the classroom.

Who are you now? Who do you want to be?

The admissions process at Brandeis is as comprehensive as it is selective. We consider your application holistically, but pay particular attention to three factors: academic qualifications, potential for social and academic success, and what you'll bring to the Brandeis community. 

In the Classroom

A student speaking in class

Above all else, the admissions officers reviewing your transcripts will want to see that you've challenged yourself. To be considered for first-year admission, you should be enrolled in a college preparatory course of study or equivalent homeschool environment. 

At a minimum, this should include:

  • Four years of English.
  • Three years of mathematics.
  • Three years of lab sciences.
  • Three years of social sciences.
  • Two to three years of foreign language(s).

Most applicants have taken honors, advanced placement or international baccalaureate-level coursework when available at their school. There's no minimum GPA for admission to Brandeis, but more than three-quarters of our accepted students graduate in the top 20% of their high school class.

Beyond the Classroom

A student making pottery

Academic ability is an important factor in our admissions process, but your life outside the classroom matters, too. In the course of our review, we look for how your interests, activities and passions align with the university's mission: to prepare active citizens who care deeply about improving the world. No one student can encompass all the diverse and unique traits that make up our student body. However, a few of the qualities we use to evaluate applicants are: 

Critical Thinking: Show us how you demonstrate creativity and curiosity. We look for evidence that you may delve deeper into subjects, projects or ideas or may not accept information at face value. We appreciate how you question, analyze, evaluate, invent, synthesize and seek out additional sources and opinions to expand your perspective.

Community Engagement: We value all the ways you use your gifts — whether time, resources, knowledge, skills or effort — to better the world around you. You inspire us by helping others, willingly making contributions to support family and community, and empathizing with the perspective or needs of others. 

Perseverance: You are not easily deterred by setbacks, and are committed to achieving your goals. We take notice when you seek out support or additional resources when faced with a challenge, don’t give up when faced with adversity and demonstrate a growth mindset.

One of the most popular questions we get from prospective students is, “How would you describe a Brandeis student?” While there is no one characteristic we can point to, all students demonstrate critical thinking, community engagement and perseverance to varying degrees during their times on campus. Ultimately, it's the sum of many things — the backgrounds, identities and ideals our students bring to Brandeis — that create the rich community and intellectual curiosity that are the hallmarks of our institution. 

We look forward to getting to know you.