Princeton University FAQs
First-Year Application Checklist
Princeton-specific Questions. In addition to the questions provided by the Coalition Application or Common Application, all applicants must submit the Princeton-specific Questions. You should submit the Princeton-specific Questions online through the Coalition Application or Common Application website.
Application Fee or Fee Waiver. You may submit a fee waiver one of two ways: 1) Select the fee waiver option on the Coalition Application or Common Application. Your school counselor must approve your fee waiver request online or submit your fee waiver form by mail or fax. 2) Select one of the following fee waiver options on the application: Princeton-specific, ACT, College Board or NACAC. All low-income students are eligible for the Princeton-specific fee waiver. In addition, all applicants who are serving or have served in the U.S. military are eligible for the Princeton-specific fee waiver. If you use the Princeton-specific fee waiver, you do not need to get approval from your college counselor or academic adviser.
Graded Written Paper. A graded written paper is required, preferably in the subjects of English or history.
Transcript. An official transcript must be sent by a school counselor or school official.
School Report (SR). The SR form is available from the Coalition Application or Common Application website. Please ask your school counselor or other school official to complete and submit the SR form.
Counselor Recommendation. Please note that the SR and the Counselor Recommendation are separate items. Be sure to “invite” your school counselor or academic adviser to complete both items.
Two (2) Teacher Recommendations. Please ask two of your teachers who have taught you in higher level courses (e.g., AP, IB Higher/Standard Level, A-Levels, etc.) in different academic areas of study to complete and send the teacher recommendation forms, available on the Coalition Application or Common Application website. The subjects should be in core academic areas, such as English, language, humanities, social sciences, natural sciences or math.
Midyear School Report. Please ask your school counselor or other school official to complete and submit this form when your midyear grades are available.
*We are extending our test optional policy for first-year and transfer applicants for the next three admission cycles (that is, for applications due in the falls of 2023, 2024, and 2025).
SAT or ACT. If you choose to submit testing, applicants should take the SAT or the ACT by the October test date for single-choice early action and the December date for regular decision. When registering for the SAT or ACT, use the following codes to ensure your scores are sent to Princeton: SAT: 2672 and ACT: 2588.
SAT Subject Tests. Princeton does not require SAT Subject Tests. If you chose to sit for a Subject Test (prior to January/June 2021 when the College Board eliminated the test) and wish to submit the score, you may do so.
TOEFL, IELTS or PTE Academic scores. If English is not your native language and you are attending a school where English is not the language of instruction, you must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Language Testing System Academic (IELTS Academic) or the Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic). You are not required to take the TOEFL, IELTS or PTE Academic if English is your native language or if you have spent at least three years at a secondary school where English is the primary language of instruction. Please have your scores sent directly to Princeton: TOEFL: 2672
Optional Application Components
Arts Supplement, if applicable
If you've excelled in architecture, creative writing, dance, music, music theater, theater or visual arts, and would like us to consider your talent, you are welcome to submit an optional Arts Supplement. Early action applicants must submit digital arts materials by Nov. 7 and regular decision applicants by Jan. 9. On the Coalition, Common or QuestBridge Application, please indicate your intention to submit an Arts Supplement in Princeton’s member questions. You will be able to submit an Arts Supplement through your Princeton Applicant Status Portal. Please keep in mind that you need to submit your application to Princeton University before you can submit your Arts Supplement. Given the timeline, students who are participating in the QuestBridge National College Match will be unable to submit an Arts Supplement.
Princeton offers optional alumni interviews. Interviews take place after the Admission Office has received your application. You may choose to opt out of the interview in the Princeton Supplement, and this choice will not put you at any disadvantage in the admission process. If you do not opt out, you may receive an email inviting you to interview with a member of our Princeton Alumni Schools Committee. If so, we encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity. The interviews are 30-45 minute informal conversations, where you can discuss the things that are important to you and also ask questions to someone who attended Princeton. We cannot guarantee that every applicant will receive an interview. This will depend on the availability of alumni in your area. Our dedicated alumni do manage to contact the vast majority of our applicants every year; however, if you do not receive an interview for any reason, it will not put you at a disadvantage since the interview is optional. We do not offer on-campus interviews. These interviews must not be recorded in any way, either by the interviewer or the applicant. Given the timeline, students who are participating in the QuestBridge National College Match will be unable to complete an interview.
You may log in to Princeton's Applicant Portal to verify whether we have received all your required application materials. You will receive a confirmation notice when we have received your application. The confirmation notice will arrive approximately 24-48 hours after you submit your admission application. If your application is incomplete, we will let you know which pieces are missing. Beginning in mid-October, you also may track the completeness of your application online through the Applicant Portal. Please note: You cannot apply for financial aid until you apply for admission. Please review our application dates and deadlines.
If a student has submitted an application on three separate occasions, the Office of Admission generally will not review subsequent applications. In these instances, if an application fee was submitted, it will be returned.
Single-Choice Early Action
Princeton University’s single-choice early action program is a nonbinding process. If admitted, you have until May 1 to notify us about your decision to matriculate. If you apply single-choice early action on Nov. 1, you may not apply to an early program at any other private college or university within the United States.
Common Application / Coalition Application with Princeton-Specific Questions
Application with PRINCETON-SPECIFIC QUESTIONS Due
GRADED WRITTEN PAPER Due
School Report, School Counselor Letter and Transcript
Teacher Evaluation Form 1
Teacher Evaluation Form 2
TOEFL, IELTS ACADEMIC or PTE ACADEMIC Test Completed (if applicable)
OPTIONAL ARTS SUPPLEMENT Due
PRINCETON FINANCIAL AID APPLICATION Due
As with students who are admitted through single-choice early action, students admitted through regular decision have until May 1 to notify us about their decision to matriculate.
Princeton University’s single-choice early action program is a nonbinding process. You may not apply to an early program at any other private college or university. However, please note the following:
You may apply early to any public institution or service academy, as long as the decision is nonbinding.
You may apply early to any international institution, as long as the decision is nonbinding.
You may apply early to any college or university with a nonbinding rolling admission process.
If you apply early action, there are three possible outcomes for your admission decision. We will either:
Or, defer a final decision on the application and review it again in the regular decision process.
If you apply regular decision, there are three possible outcomes for your admission decision. We will either:
Or, offer you a spot on the wait list.
If you are admitted and have completed the Princeton Financial Aid Application, you will be notified of any financial aid award at the time you are offered admission, enabling you to compare your admission and financial aid offers with those from other institutions to which you’ve been admitted.
Princeton Acceptance Rate
Princeton’s acceptance rate is 5.8%, which is higher than most other Ivy League schools. Princeton’s reputation makes the school an attractive choice for prospective undergraduate applicants, which means your competition will be stiff.
Princeton Early Decision Acceptance Rate
Since the school has decided to withhold admissions rates, it’s challenging to pinpoint Princeton’s early decision acceptance rate. However, the early decision acceptance rate in a recent cycle was 14.7%, approximately three times the overall rate.
Princeton Yield Rate
A university’s yield rate refers to the number of admitted students who enroll. Although Princeton has opted not to share the number of applicants who applied for the class of 2026 or 2027, we can look at past data to learn more about its yield rate.
Looking at Princeton’s 2025 class profile information, 1,647 applicants were admitted, and 1,345 enrolled. This means that Princeton’s recent yield rate is 81.7%.
How Hard Is It to Get Into Princeton?
Given its yield rate, we know that Princeton is a competitive university and that many applicants would happily jump at the opportunity to attend. Princeton’s acceptance rate is approximately 5.8%.
That statistic can be discouraging to prospective applicants, but it’s important to note that these numbers only at test to the volume of applications, not their quality.
Mid-Year Report, School Report, and Official Transcripts As part of your Princeton application, you must provide:
Counselor and Teacher Recommendations
Counselor and teacher letters of recommendation hold significant weight in the application process. Remember to “invite” your guidance counselor to fill in the recommendation form.
Princeton requires two teacher recommendation forms from teachers who have taught you in higher-level courses, including AP, IB Higher/Standard Level, A-levels, or others.
Princeton GPA Requirements
Although Princeton does not explicitly state a required GPA for admission, Princeton’s average GPA is 3.9. Achieving a GPA of 4.0 or close to it can make getting into Princeton easier, regardless of Princeton’s lack of GPA requirements.
Princeton SAT Requirements
Although the Princeton University requirements guide currently states they have a test-optional policy, you can choose to submit SAT scores. There is no particular SAT score required to apply.
According to Princeton’s class profile data, the middle 50% of admitted students scored between 760-800 in the SAT’s Math section and 730-780 in the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section. Achieving scores toward the high end of these ranges will improve your chances.
Princeton ACT Requirements
There are no ACT cutoffs or requirements at Princeton. However, the middle 50% of students who submitted ACT scores achieved an average composite score between 33 and 35. Shooting for the higher end of this ACT score range can give you a better shot at admission.
TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic Scores
You’re required to take one of these tests if English isn’t your first language or you’re attending a school where English isn’t the language of instruction. These tests evaluate your English proficiency.
Graded Written Paper
Princeton requires a graded written paper. This is a peculiar admissions requirement that you may not see at other universities. If you’ve already graduated, you need to contact your secondary school and obtain one of your graded papers for submission.
Application Fee or Fee Waiver
You must pay an application fee of $70 or get approved for a fee waiver. Princeton states that all low-income students are eligible for a fee waiver.
You may choose to submit an Arts Supplement if you’ve excelled in artistic areas like:
Princeton Application Deadlines
Princeton Early Decision Dates
What Do You Need to Get Into Princeton?
If you still have questions about the Princeton application requirements and what you need to do to get in, read on.
1. What Does Princeton Look For In Applicants?
Princeton is looking for “students with intellectual curiosity, who have pursued and achieved academic excellence. [They] also look for students with strong personal and extracurricular accomplishments.” Emphasize your academic achievements and passions application to boost your chances of acceptance.
2. What GPA Do You Need to Get into Princeton
Although Princeton doesn’t release information on the high school GPAs of admitted students, a higher GPA will always bolster your application. For example, a 3.5 GPA is by no means considered low, but Princeton is the top university in the U.S. It’s in your best interest to improve your GPA as much as you can.
3. How Do I Stand Out in the Princeton Application Process?
Standing out in the admissions process starts with challenging yourself with high-level courses, achieving good grades, and earning strong SAT or ACT scores.
Remember to also be authentic, demonstrate your initiative, and be passionate about the things you do!
4. When Should I Prepare for Princeton?
You should start preparing for your Princeton application as soon as possible. Starting early, even before your junior year, can give you time to think about activities and courses that will help you stand out.
5. How Much Is Princeton Tuition?
Annual tuition alone at Princeton costs $59,710.
6. What Extracurriculars Should I Have to Get Into Princeton?
There aren’t any extracurricular activities in particular that Princeton is looking for. However, extracurriculars that showcase your leadership ability, community spirit, and special talents can help you stand out in the admissions process.
Your extracurriculars should be tailored to your passions but also show your character and talents. For example, taking piano lessons because you enjoy them is fine, but perhaps organizing a show or performing competitively would demonstrate more of your abilities.
Ultimately, you shouldn’t take part in activities you don’t enjoy because you think it’s what Princeton wants to see. Often, more unique and unheard-of extracurriculars can help you stand out on your application. Simply focus on what your extracurriculars say about you as a person