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Is NYU Getting Out of Your League?

New York University (NYU) is a private research university founded in 1831 under the leadership of then U.S. Secretary for the Treasury, Albert Gallatin. He and the founding council believed that the city needed a university that is open to all. An institution where students are admitted on the basis of their merit alone, regardless of their national origin, religious beliefs, or social background.

Since then, NYU has grown to become one of the largest private universities in the United States. It is known for its programs in the arts, humanities, business, law, medicine, engineering, and natural sciences. They are strongly committed to interdisciplinary research which allows students to study multiple disciplines and gain a well-rounded education. Their vibrant research community focuses on cutting-edge research in areas such as data science, artificial intelligence, and global health. As such, they have been consistently recognized and ranked as one of the top universities in the world with their faculty and alumni making significant contributions in many areas.

NYU Academic Ranking

NYU’s commitment to academic excellence and innovation makes it a dynamic and exciting place to learn.

They consistently train and mold their faculty and students to become trailblazers in their respective fields. Throughout its history, they have produced 39 Nobel Prize winners, 8 Turing Award winners, 5 Fields Medal winners, 31 MacArthur Fellows, 26 Pulitzer Prize winners, 38 Oscar winners, 30 Emmy Award winners, 25 Tony Award winners, 12 Grammy Award winners, and 7 Olympic medalists.

In the latest US News National University Rankings, NYU is ranked the 25th best National University in 2023 with their programs ranking within the top 30 list all year round.

The unique geographical advantage makes NYU's Stern School of Business rank among the best in the United States. Its majors include Finance (#2), Real Estate (#3), Management (#4), Marketing (#5), International Business (#5) , Analytics (#6), Accounting (#8), etc.

(Source: US News)

Although NYU’s Computer Science program is not part of the tier 1 category in the U.S., it is quite popular for game development.

It is also worth mentioning that NYU's Nursing program is very well-known in the United States, ranking ninth overall.

NYU Undergraduate Colleges and International Campuses

New York University started expanding in the early 1900s and continued to do so until the early 2000s, becoming the largest private university in the United States with more than 50,000 undergraduate and graduate students overall.

NYU offers undergraduate programs at the following schools:

  • College of Arts and Science

  • Leonard N. Stern School of Business (Business School)

  • Tisch School of the Arts

  • Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development (School of Culture, Education, and Human Development)

  • Gallatin School of Individualized Study

  • Tandon School of Engineering

  • College of Nursing

  • Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences

  • School of Social Work (School of Social Work)

  • School of Professional Studies

Each of which have their own unique courses and research directions to meet the learning needs of different students.

NYU is also a global university with a diverse student body, with students from more than 130 countries. They have established a strong intercontinental presence with their top-tier study abroad programs and international campuses.

NYU is also ranked #1 by US News for their Study Abroad program. NYU has academic sites in Accra, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Florence, London, Los Angeles, Madrid, Paris, Prague, Sydney, Tel Aviv, and Washington, D.C.

NYU has also established degree-granting portal campuses in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai.

New York University Abu Dhabi

In the fall of 2010, New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) was established as NYU's first overseas campus with an inaugural cohort of 150 students, offering students a full degree program. NYUAD's main campus, located on Saadiyat Island, enrolls students from all over the world. It opened in 2014 and currently has 2,100 undergraduate students. The campus construction costs are fully funded by the Abu Dhabi government, as is the operating costs and any future expansion.

NYUAD offers 26 undergraduate majors, ranging from Arts and Sciences to Engineering, from Natural to Social Sciences. They cover areas such as Computer Science, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Psychology, Design, Chinese, Arabic, and other majors.

(Source: NYUAD)

New York University Shanghai

In 2011, NYU announced plans to open another campus, NYU Shanghai which officially opened during the fall 2013 semester. Since late summer of 2014, NYU Shanghai has had its headquarters in Pudong, Shanghai, with the main campus in a separate building. On May 30, 2019, a new campus building in Qiantan International Business District was completed and will be officially put into use in the spring of 2023.

NYU Shanghai Qiantan Campus Source: Internet

At present, NYU Shanghai has 1,800 students from more than 70 countries around the world with Chinese students accounting for 50% of the student body. The school offers 19 undergraduate majors where students can choose to study the Global Network curriculum or the NYU New York Minors.

List of NYU Shanghai undergraduate majors, Source: NYU Shanghai

NYU Admissions Trend in Recent Years

Admission to NYU is highly competitive. With an acceptance rate of 12.2% and more than 100,500 applicants for Fall 2026, it is the largest number of applicants in NYU history and one of the largest ever received by any U.S. university.

(Source: Washington Square News)

The average unweighted GPA of freshmen is 3.71. About 50% of the admitted students scored within the range of 1350-1530 in the SATs.


According to the data released by NYU, the recent admission rate of three undergraduate colleges is the lowest in its history. These are the College of Arts and Sciences (7%), the Stern School of Business (7%), and the School of Nursing (3%).

NYU's applicant pool has increased year after year, and the number of applicants in the two rounds of Early Decision has also increased significantly. Last year, ED I applicants increased by 41%, and ED II increased by 17%.

This year's application is still under review. However, NYU has already broken records for the 16th consecutive year in history for their number of applicants. In the middle of last month, New York University stated that the number of application materials received this year has increased by 13% compared to last year. About 120,000 applications, including 22,000 ED applications, have increased by 14% within the last year as well.

Considering its acceptance rate, NYU is now getting further and further out of the majority of applicants' league. They only accept the best of the best. More than a fifth of their admitted applicants were straight-A students in high school, and more than 3/5 of applicants submitted their SAT/ACT test scores.

With consistently increasing competitiveness, students who wish to enter NYU must prepare early in sharpening their qualifications and beefing up their application. Setting themselves apart from other applicants is the key to success.

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