Barnard College Admissions: Everything You Want to and Need to Know

Overview of Barnard College

Barnard College is a private women’s college founded in 1889 and is situated on a four-acre urban campus in Manhattan, New York. The institution has a large selection of undergraduate and graduate degree programs for students to choose from. A robust student/faculty ratio backs students, and professors take a personalized approach to the teaching and learning process. Outside of the classroom, students will find plenty of opportunities to engage with the campus community via the university’s many clubs and organizations. The institution is one of the original Seven Sisters colleges. Barnard is associated with the adjacent Columbia University but maintains its faculty, endowment, governance, and curriculum.


  • Total Enrollment: 2,562 (all undergraduates)
  • Gender Breakdown: 100 percent female
  • 98 percent full-time

Cost of Attendance Information

  • Tuition and Fees: $57,668
  • Books: $1,150
  • Room and Board: $17,856
  • Other Expenses: $1,370
  • Total Cost: $78,044

Financial Aid Information

  • Percentage of New Students Receiving Aid: 50 percent
  • Percentage of New Students Receiving Types of Aid
    • Grants: 42 percent
    • Loans: 33 percent
  • Average Amount of Aid
    • Grants: $41,886
    • Loans: $5,068

Academic Programs Offered

  • Most Popular Majors: Social Sciences; Biological and Biomedical Sciences; Psychology; English Language and Literature/Letters; and Visual and Performing Arts

Retention and Graduation

  • First-Year Student Retention (full-time students): 95 percent
    • Transfer-Out Rate: 6 percent
  • 4-Year Graduation Rate: 87 percent
  • 6-Year Graduation Rate: 92 percent

NCAA Athletic Programs

  • Women’s Sports: Basketball, Cross Country, Crew-Rowing, Fencing, Field Hockey, Golf, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball, Swimming and Diving, Tennis, Track and Field

Overview of Barnard College Admissions

Barnard College boasts a highly competitive admissions pool with a low acceptance rate and high mean SAT/ACT scores. However, Barnard has a robust admissions process that involves a multitude of academic measures. A persuasive essay, short answer essay, and glowing recommendation letters can bolster your application, as can along with being involved with student organizations and attempting a challenging course load. Students with unique talents and accomplishments can still receive strong consideration even if their GPAs are outside of the admissions offices mean range. After applying, students will receive a message from an admissions counselor about the next steps of the application process. Interested students should check out the university’s website, which has helpful tips and contact information for the admissions offices.

Admissions Data

During the 2018-19 admissions phase, Barnard College had an acceptance rate of 14%.  for every 100 students who provided applications, 14 students gained admission, making Barnard’s admissions process highly competitive.

SAT Requirements and Scores

Barnard College wants all applicants to submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2018-19 admissions phase, 58% of admitted students provided SAT scores. This admissions data reveals that most of Barnard’s admitted students score within the top 20% nationally on the SAT.

For the reading and writing part, 50% of students admitted to Barnard scored between 660 and 760, while 25% scored below 660, and 25% scored over 760. On the math part, 50% of admitted students scored between 650 and 740, while 25% scored below 650, and 25% scored over 740. Applicants with an overall SAT score of 1500 or higher will have particularly competitive chances at Barnard.

ACT Requirements and Scores

Barnard wants all applicants to submit either SAT or ACT scores. During the 2018-19 admissions phase, 51% of admitted students provided ACT scores.

This admissions data reveals that most of Barnard’s admitted students score within the top 7% nationally on the ACT.  50% of students admitted to Barnard received an overall ACT score between 30 and 33, while 25% scored over 33 and 25% scored below 30.

Safety Net Schools: Easy to Gain Admission

If past admission data predicts that you would be a competitive candidate for Barnard College, then it should be easy for you to gain admissions to the schools below. If Barnard College is currently out of your reach, then you are sure to be a competitive candidate for the schools below.

University of California, Santa Barbara, Stony Brook University, University of Texas at Dallas, University of Connecticut, Rochester Institute of Technology, University of Massachusetts Amherst, University of California, Davis

Same Tier: Just As Hard to Gain Admission

If you’re a competitive candidate for Barnard College, then you should have an equal chance of gaining admissions at these schools.

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York University, Boston University, Boston College, University of California, Los Angeles, Villanova University, University of Maryland

Reach Institutions: Gaining Admissions Will Be More of a Challenge

These schools are more challenging to gain admission into than Barnard College. If you improve your GPA and SAT/ACT scores, then you’ll be a competitive candidate for these schools.

Stanford University, Brown University, Dartmouth College, Cornell University, Tufts University, Duke University, Northeastern University  

Applying to Barnard College

Application Deadline: January 1

Undergraduate Admissions Website:

Undergraduate Application Link(s):

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