Brandeis University Admissions
What We Look For
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, as well as a demonstrated understanding of Brandeis' mission.
In the Classroom
Above all else, we 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 percent of their high school class.
Beyond the Classroom
Academic ability is an important factor in our admissions process, but your life outside the classroom matters, too. During 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, but here are some of the qualities we consider:
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.
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.
Our Founding Values
Brandeis is a university dedicated to our founding values of inclusivity and justice. Established 75 years ago to address antisemitism and discrimination in higher education, we value the diverse array of backgrounds, beliefs, and experiences that our students bring to our community.
We are steadfast in our commitment to the belief that diversity is crucial to academic excellence, innovation, and the free exchange of ideas.
This year, our essay question asks you to reflect on these values and how they have impacted your educational experience. On the Common Application, you’ll be asked to respond to the following prompt. We look forward to learning more about how your experience has been shaped by values so deeply important to the Brandeis community.
Brandeis was established 75 years ago to address antisemitism, racism, and gender discrimination in higher education, and today, the university remains dedicated to its founding values of inclusivity and justice. How has your educational experience shaped your perspective on these values?