Arts and Sciences Admissions

First Year Applicants

First Year Applicants

Students on library couches

Planning to apply to Oberlin as a first year student? You've come to the right place!  Here you will find information about our application requirements and deadlines. You will also find information about Early Decision, and special notes for home schooled students and those applying as high school juniors. If you are not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, please refer to the undocumented student or international student sections.

 

 
What We Look For

Oberlin is a highly selective liberal arts college, and we admit about a third of our applicants each year. When making our admissions decisions, we draw upon a holistic review process. The holistic review allows us to get a sense of not only the applicant's academic qualifications, but also of what the applicant is like as a person, and what they will contribute to the Oberlin community. We seek an incoming class that represents a variety of talents, viewpoints, and achievements, and we employ a rigorous review process to ensure that each application receives careful consideration.

When evaluating your academic qualifications, we will spend the most time with your high school transcript, looking at the classes you have taken, the grades you received, and the overall rigor of your course selection. We don't have any minimum requirements for admission, but we expect to see a high school record demonstrating proficiency equivalent to four years of English, four years of mathematics, three years of the same foreign language, three years of laboratory sciences, and three years of social studies. We require you to submit standardized test scores to assist us in our evaluation of your academic abilities, but we believe your classroom performance is a greater indicator of your likelihood of success in the academic environment at Oberlin.

The holistic review process means that no one element of an application will ever guarantee a student's acceptance or rejection, and we encourage you to give careful attention to each and every aspect of your application. 

 
Did You Know

Students who wish to pursue topics outside of traditional courses, an important alternative is available in the Experimental College (ExCo). Founded in 1968, ExCo is a student-run organization that sponsors courses (for limited academic credit) taught Oberlin faculty, students, administrators, and residents. Rock climbing, performance swing, astrology, 16-mm film production, jump rope, bike mechanics, henna body art… you name it, ExCo may have a class about it.

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