About Washington State University

Should You Attend Washington State University?

Washington State University (WSU) is a large, public school with 23,136 undergraduates and 4,544 graduate students. A respected state university, WSU offers more than 200 programs of study at the undergraduate level, 66 at the master's level and 47 at the doctoral level. Weigh the facts below to find out if WSU is the school for you.


  • Student debt following graduation is $3,167 lower than the national average
  • High number of academic programs
  • WSU gives credit for advanced placement (AP) and international baccalaureate exams
  • Diverse student body


  • Total cost is $4,964 higher than the national average for public, 4-year universities
  • Far from major cities and airports

Ranking & School Analysis

Students at WSU can enroll in undergraduate, certificate, post-bachelor and post-master's certificate programs, as well as bachelors, masters, doctoral and first professional degree programs. WSU has specialty accreditation for its programs in pharmacy, clinical psychology, dietetics, speech and language pathology, audiology, music and education. Faculty members include published authors and scholars, as well as Institute of Medicine and National Academy of Science members. In 2012, the website MSN ranked Washington State University's home of Pullman as one of the best college towns. The College Board reports that 82% of freshmen return for their sophomore year.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the 2012-2013 total cost for in-state students to attend WSU and live on campus was $22,824, which is higher than the national average of $17,860 for 4-year public schools. The College Board states that the average student debt at graduation was $23,433 which is $3,167 lower than the national average of $26,600. The College Board reports that there is a student-teacher ratio of 15:1, which is just under the national average of 16:1.

Admissions and Financial Aid at Washington State University

The priority deadline for fall admission is January 31, and the application cost is $50. The Assured Admission program allows students who graduated in the top 10 percent of their class or had a GPA of 3.5 to be automatically accepted to WSU. Enrollment is primarily based on GPA and standardized test scores, as well as class rank and college preparatory work. Other items that are considered include personal essays and extracurricular activities. Transfer students may need to declare a major before being admitted and, depending on the program of interest, may need to fulfill additional requirements.

WSU offers more than $200 million in financial aid and awards more than 700 scholarships. Many scholarships do not require a separate application because students who apply by the admissions deadline are automatically considered for most programs. Washington residents may qualify for the merit-based University Achievement Awards or the need-based Cougar Commitment Scholarships. Department and alumni scholarships are available, including College of Education or College of Business awards and the Washington State Alumni Association Leadership Award.

Application & Tuition Info
Regular School Application Deadline (2013-2014) No regular application deadline, priority application due January 31st*
Financial Aid Priority Application Due (2013-2014) February 15th*
Application Fee (2011-2012) $50***
Acceptance Rate (2012) 76%***
All Tuition & Living Expenses (2012-2013) $22,824 for residents, $35,906 for non-residents***
Average Financial Aid Package (2011-2012) $16,695*
Average Student Debt at Graduation (2012) $23,433****
Percentage of Students with Need Met (2011-2012) 28%*
Student Loan Default Rate (2009) 5.7%***

Life at Washington State University

Located in a rural setting, students who choose to attend WSU can find ample opportunities to pursue outdoor activities. Hiking, rafting, fishing and skiing are just some of the ways students can enjoy the environment around them. WSU has 23 fraternities and 13 sororities. According to the College Board, 19% of male students join fraternities, while 18% of female students are involved in sororities.

Students seeking a place to study may try the Animal Health Library, Owen Science and Engineering Library and Holland and Terrell Libraries. WSU has multiple student clubs centered on academics, graduate and professional topics and special interests. The school's sports teams participate at the NCAA Division 1 and NCAA Division 1A levels. WSU also offers a Mom's Weekend and a Dad's Weekend to honor parents. These 3-day celebrations feature 100 different activities for students to enjoy with their parents.

Student Life Info
Campus Setting Town*
Student Population (2012) 23,136 undergraduates, 4,544 graduate students*
% Male-to-Female Students (2011) 49% to 51%***
% of Full-Time Students (2011) 87%***
% of In-State Students (2011) 87%***
% of International Students (2011) 3%***
Retention Rate (2012) 82%*
Campus Housing Available Yes***
% of Students Living On Campus (2011) 36%****
Number of Libraries 3**

Sources: *The College Board, **Washington State University, ***NCES College Navigator, ****US News and World Report.

School Contact Information

  • Address: 370 Lighty Student Services Bldg., PO Box 641067, Pullman, WA 99164-1067
  • Phone Number: (509) 335-5586