Purdue University

Purdue University Student Enrollment and Financial Aid Info

Located in West Lafayette, Indiana, Purdue University is a 4-year, public institution that offers associate's, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree programs. Read about the pros and cons of the school, plus ranking, tuition and admission information.

Should You Attend Purdue University?

Founded in 1869, Purdue University houses four campuses across the state of Indiana. The main campus in West Lafayette sits on 2,468 acres. In 2013, the university was ranked #65 by U.S. News & World Report National Universities Best Colleges 2013 edition. Weight the facts below to find out if Purdue is the university for you.


  • Acceptance rate is 2.5 percentage points higher than the national average
  • Student-to-faculty ratio is 14:1, which is lower than the national average
  • High number of academic programs
  • Accepts AP and dual credits


  • Total cost is $5,612 higher for state residents and $11,213 higher for non-residents than the national average
  • Student debt following graduation is $626 higher than the national average
  • Far from major cities and airports
  • High number of TAs teach classes

About Purdue University

Purdue offers more than 200 undergraduate majors through 12 schools in addition to roughly 70 master's and doctoral degree programs. Purdue employs a semester-based academic calendar. In 2011, the most popular bachelor's programs were engineering, business and social sciences. The U.S. News and World Report ranks the engineering school as the 10th best in the nation. Additionally, the business school was ranked #42, the education school was ranked #37, and the pharmacy school was ranked #7 nationally by the U.S. News and World Report.

The retention rates of Purdue students are strong; 90% of full-time and 50% of part-time students who started in 2010 returned in 2011, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Purdue's student-to-faculty ratio is two points lower than the national average of 16:1; however, a high number of TAs (34%) teach classes. Additionally, the total cost of attending the university (including tuition, room and board, books, supplies and living expenses) is higher than the national average, as is student debt following graduation. Note that West Lafayette is far from major cities: Indianapolis is about 70 miles southeast of the university, and Chicago is located 125 miles to the north.

Admissions & Financial Aid at Purdue University

When applying to Purdue, you will need to fill out an online application. A complete application includes official transcripts, ACT or SAT test scores and a personal essay. It's worth noting that the NCES reports that 73% of applicants in Fall 2011 submitted SAT test scores. In 2011, the middle 50% of applicants scored 490-610 on the SAT reading component, 550-690 on the math component, and 500-610 on the writing component. Additionally, Purdue requires high school prerequisites in math, laboratory science, English, foreign language and social studies.

To apply for grants, scholarships and loans available through Purdue, you must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The priority deadline to apply for financial aid is March 1. In order to qualify for scholarships through the university, you must submit a separate scholarship application. The College Board reports that the average need-based scholarship or grant awarded was $11,302. Meanwhile, the average non-need based aid awarded was $7,308.

Application and Tuition Info
Regular Application Deadline (2013) March 1 (priority deadline)***
Financial Aid Application Deadline (2013) March 1 (priority deadline)***
Application Fee (2011-2012) $50**
Acceptance Rate (2011-2012) 68%**
All Tuition & Living Expenses (2011-2012) $22,748 for IN residents; $40,916 for non-residents**
Average Financial Aid Package (2013) $11,411***
Percent of Students with Need Met (2013) 94%***
Average Student Debt at Graduation (2013) $27,286***
Student Loan Default Rate (2009) 2.8%**

Life at Purdue University

As a student at Purdue, you'll be part of a learning community, which is a cluster of first-year students who take courses together or who share interests and live in the same residence hall. This university has 16 different residence halls and student apartments as well as seven dining halls and various mini-marts and fast food options. As part of the Purdue student body, you will have the opportunity to participate in more than 890 student organizations. Furthermore, you may cheer on or join the Boilermaker's in 18 varsity sports that compete in the NCAA I conference Big Ten division. Greek life on campus is vibrant, and roughly 20% of the student body participates in the 80 fraternities and sororities.

By attending Purdue, you will join a diverse student community. Though the NCES reports that 70% of the student population was Caucasian in 2011, 12% of the student body was foreign and another 27% was from out-of-state. As of the same date, 94% of the student body was 24 years old or younger.

Student Life Info
Campus Setting Suburban**
Student Population (2011) 31,988 undergraduates, 8,861 graduate students**
Male-to-Female Student Ratio (2011) 58% to 42%**
% of Full-Time Students (2011) 94%**
% of In-State Students (2011) 60%**
% of International Students (2011) 12%**
Retention Rate (2010-2011) 90% for full-time and 50% for part-time students**
Campus Housing Available Yes**
% of Students Living on Campus 35%****
Number of Libraries 12*
Extracurricular Activities Around 900*
Noteworthy College of Engineering is known as the Cradle of Astronauts****

Sources: *Purdue University, **National Center for Education Statistics, College Navigator, ***College Board, ****U.S. News & World Report.

School Contact Information

  • Address: Office of Admissions, Purdue University, 475 Stadium Mall Drive, West Lafayette, IN 47907
  • Phone: (765) 494-1776