Notre Dame has always been a top choice school for high-achieving students. This private Catholic university is known for being extremely selective, only accepting students with a high standardized test score. The average incoming class has an average SAT score of 1475 and GPA of 4.06. This competitive environment and the excellent education it provides is why many students are interested in knowing how to get into Notre Dame.
If this university is your dream school, read this article for tips that will help you get accepted into Notre Dame. We’ll give go over Notre Dame’s admission requirements and provide you with the school’s acceptance rate as well as what you need to know about their application.
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All About Notre Dame Admissions
The University of Notre Dame was established in 1842 by a priest of the Congregation of Holy Cross, Rev Edward F Sorin, and is located in South Bend, Indiana. Notre Dame has evolved to become one of the leading research and scholarship universities and is ranked as the best Catholic school in the country. The university is known for both its academics and athletics programs.
Notre Dame Acceptance Rate
Information on the school website shows that for the 2021 first-year applicant pool, 23,642 candidates applied but only 3,561 of the applicants were offered admission. This places the acceptance rate of Notre Dame at approximately seven percent, making the school one of the most selective colleges in North America.
Notre Dame GPA
Potential undergraduate students applying to the University of Notre Dame must present a competitive application. A transfer student must have scored at least a “B” in the courses required. For regular students, a GPA of 3.75 or better puts you in contention for admission.
Know that the 25th percentile of accepted applicants earned an SAT score of 1400 and that the 75th percentile earned an SAT score of 1550. Admission decisions rely heavily on academic performance.
Notre Dame Total Enrollment
Notre Dame currently has a total population of 8,874 undergraduate students, 3935 graduate students, and has around 1,424 faculty members. All of these current students were at the top of their class rank in high school and excelled in their academic requirements.
Notre Dame Requirements
- Your Application. You are expected to submit your application via the common application or coalition application website.
- Writing Supplement. A supplemental essay or personal statement serves as an opportunity for you to tell the admissions committee about your goals and aspirations. It also gives the committee an in-depth insight into your personality and what you have to offer. This is a requirement for all prospective students.
- Transcripts. You’ll need to submit your official high school transcript or have a record of your secondary school academic performance. Early applicants can submit an optional summary or progress report of either the first-trimester or first-quarter performance through their application portal.
- Recommendation or Evaluation Letter. You must submit a letter of evaluation or letter of recommendation from one of your high school teachers. The teacher must be from one of your core academic subject areas. You can get a counselor evaluation as well. Although this is not a requirement per se, it’s highly recommended.
- Application Fee. A non-refundable application fee of $75 is a requirement for all applicants who wish to study at the University of Notre Dame. This fee can be waived under special circumstances.
Is It Hard to Get Into Notre Dame?
Yes, it is quite difficult to get into Notre Dame. Notre Dame is one of the most selective schools in the country. In the 2021 school year, the university accepted just about seven percent of applicants. This is one of the lowest acceptance rates in the state of Indiana and the country at large.
How to Prepare for a Notre Dame Interview
Interviews are not part of the admission process at the University of Notre Dame. The school encourages students to put in their best and tell their stories through the personal statement they provide with their applications. Prospective students can contact their regional admissions counselor to ask any specific questions they may have about the school or the admission process.
7 Tips for Getting Into Notre Dame
Getting into Notre Dame isn’t easy. Because of its low acceptance rate and to be a competitive applicant, you must have a well-prepared game plan and carefully follow it. Knowing what you need to do is very important for your success. Here is a list of tips that can help you along the application process with a brief explanation.
1. Take The Most Challenging Classes to Achieve a High GPA
Highly rated schools such as Notre Dame use the Academic Index, which is a metric that combines GPA and other academic factors to determine if students meet a certain threshold before other qualitative parts of their applications are considered.
A high GPA is good but you should also pursue the most challenging curriculum that you can find. What this means for you is taking plenty of honors courses and AP classes, if your school offers them. If you have a lower GPA and you’re still in your early high school years, you can work hard to improve. Showing determination and a willingness to improve can also look good to the admissions officers.
2. Cultivate at Least One or Two Extracurriculars
The most competitive applicants push to become more than regular students. They are also creative intellectuals and passionate people who hold multiple interests. They are as involved outside the classroom as they are in it. Aside from just looking good on a resume, extracurriculars are a great way to make friends, find new hobbies and passions, and develop new skills that complement what you’re interested in studying.
Students who have strong extracurricular activities are seen as more competitive candidates. The aim is to have one or two well-developed interests which you can use to develop your passion. Tier one and tier two activities are the most exceptional and should be what you aim to excel at. You can take part in some national research or participate in a club.
3. Place Special Attention to Your Essays
Your application essays are a strong selling point as a Notre Dame applicant. The school emphasizes essays, calling them the most enjoyable part of the application process. Admissions officers can learn about the important decisions you’ve made throughout your life. They can also learn other interesting things about you such as your family traditions, adventures you have survived, your embarrassing moments, and other unique aspects of your life.
4. Apply for Restrictive Early Action Plan
The University of Notre Dame offers a Restrictive Early Action plan. In this case, it means that you can apply to other schools under an Early Action plan but not as an Early Decision. This plan is, however, nonbinding.
The REA acceptance rate is a bit higher than the general admissions rate. What this means is that you are at a slight advantage if you choose to go this route. If Notre Dame is your first choice, it will be best to apply under an Early Decision plan, if you can.
5. Be Sure That Notre Dame is the Best Choice for You
The University of Notre Dame distinguishes itself from other top-level schools in several ways. It takes its own religious affiliation and commitment seriously. This doesn’t mean the school is strictly for Catholics though, as all faiths are welcome. Just keep it at the back of your mind that this school is affiliated with the Catholic Church.
The university also pays consideration to the level of interest shown in the school by an applicant during the admissions process. So if you wish to attend this school, ensure you demonstrate your interest through visits to the campus, if you can, or any other engagements.
6. Pay Attention To Your Social Media Pages
As social media becomes increasingly popular by the day, it draws the attention of potential alma maters and employers. Any organization that will be affiliated with you in some sort of way will likely do a background check of your social media pages. Make sure you don’t have anything unbecoming on any of your social media pages that might affect your admissions chances.
7. Do a Final Check
Do a final check before sending in your application. Check if all the materials you need to add are there. Skipping just one item can jeopardize your chances of getting an admission. The best thing to do is to make a checklist to help you keep tabs on every single component of your application and get someone you trust to review your application before you submit it.
What Does It Take to Get Into Notre Dame?
To become a student at Notre Dame, you must understand the tenets of the school. As a Catholic University, the school expects students to be morally dependable. The school also places focus on how you can tell stories and project yourself in your essays. Academically inclined students that are ready to go the extra mile in graduation with a good college GPA are most welcome at Notre Dame.
How to Get Into Notre Dame FAQ
Yes. Although Notre Dame is a highly competitive school, they have some of the happiest students you can find. Students who attend the University of Notre Dame love the environment and are always looking to make it better.
The University of Notre Dame is the leading Catholic research university in the country and it provides a unique voice in tertiary education that is intellectual and unapologetically moral in every way. The university is also known for its fantastic sports program and its beautiful campus.
The total cost of attending the University of Notre Dame as a first-year student is $80,211. This cost covers tuition and fees, a room and meals, books and supplies, personal expenses, and transportation. You can check their breakdown of these costs for more details.
Yes, Notre Dame offers financial aid. The university dedicated $173 million to need-based scholarships for undergraduate students in 2021-2022. If you need it, you can apply for financial aid.
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