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Howard University Acceptance Rate and Admissions

May 11, 2022

Howard University is a globally renowned private educational institution. It was established in 1867, and today it includes 14 schools and colleges. The university offers more than 120 programs to students in professional, graduate, and undergraduate degrees. Howard has proudly awarded over 130,000 degrees in science, arts, and humanities. 

The historic main campus of the university is situated on a hilltop in Northwest Washington. More than 24,000 candidates apply for Howard admissions every year. If you want to get into this top-ranked university, it is crucial to know the Howard University admission requirements and Howard acceptance rate to frame a strong application.


This article provides all the necessary information about Howard University acceptance rate and admission review process.

Howard 2022 Ranking

All the schools are ranked as per their performance in various accepted indicators of excellence.


The following table provides information for Howard’s ranking on different parameters:

Parameter Ranking 
Best value school41
Best undergraduate teaching 22
Best national university83
Best undergraduate teaching 30
The best college for veterans50

Howard University Acceptance Rate 

Howard University is considered one of the best national educational institutions. Last year it received 29,391 applications for new admission. Out of these, the university offered admission letters to 10,362 candidates. These figures suggest that Howard university acceptance rate is 35%.


The low acceptance rate makes Howard a highly competitive school. Only 35 out of 100 applicants excel in the admission procedure. Students who score a grade above B+ are considered fit for admission here. The tough application review process ranks the university #4 in the Columbia district for schools with the lowest acceptance rate.

Students need excellent grades, test scores, and personal qualities to impress the admission officers during application reviews.


Howard University Admission Requirements

Howard ensures and promotes its academic excellence by following a highly selective admission procedure. Students selected here demonstrate strong academic knowledge, consistent growth, self-motivation, and achievements. 

The university always encourages applicants from economically disadvantaged sectors who are enthusiastic about gaining knowledge and adding value to the campus. However, candidates who want to secure a seat here must be aware of the various requirements for admission. 


The most crucial Howard admission requirements are:

  • High school GPA
  • SAT or ACT scores
  • Complete the common application
  • Official high school transcript
  • Letter of recommendation from former school’s counsellor and teacher

The university seeks applicants who meet the minimum admission requirements. Howard may also ask for essays from applicants. To make a wise decision, the admission officers thoroughly review each application and double-check the provided information by contacting the schools and clearinghouse for the authenticity of the records.


Anyone who submits false documents may be disqualified or dismissed even after earning an admission offer.

What are the Different Types of Applications at Howard?

The university invites applications for various programs. These include the following students:

  • Domestic first-year students: These include those students who join the college/university for the first time in their lives. Howard accepts students who have not yet completed their high school diplomas. These students must provide their secondary school academic profile; ACT/SAT scores, volunteer work, community activity, personal talent, learned skills, leadership quality, and educational objectives.
  • Domestic transfer students: Students who have completed their academic studies at another university or college after getting their high school diploma can apply to Howard through transfer application. The university accepts hundreds of transfer students through a holistic admission process. Howard University accepts transfer applicants with up to 60 transfer credit hours.
  • Returning students: Students who were pursuing any course at Howard and did not enrol for the last semester are welcomed by the university to continue their studies in the chosen college. To take readmission, students must submit the official transcript of the school they attended when they left Howard a minimum of 30 days before the commencement of their previous course.
  • First-year international students: Howard invites international students with excellent educational backgrounds who have not yet graduated from any post-secondary educational institution. Generally, all international candidates must start the application process a year before joining the university to meet all the requirements. 

The major requirements for international students include their academic records, standardized test scores, unique talent, leadership, educational targets, and skills.

  • International transfer students: International students who have acquired academic knowledge at other universities can apply for Howard admissions. For this, applicants need to submit up to 60 transfer credit hours.

Howard University GPA Requirements

An applicant’s high school GPA is a crucial factor considered by Howard University during the admission procedure. Candidates with high GPAs have a better chance of admission to their preferred college. 

Since Howard’s acceptance rate is highly competitive, applicants need to have exceptional grades to demonstrate their potential to get into the college. From last year’s Howard admissions data, the average GPA for admissions is 3.66 on a 4.0 scale. This means that the university typically accepts students included in the group of B+ students in their high school.

Howard University ACT Score Requirements

Howard University’s acceptance rate is also influenced by the ACT scores of applicants. According to the latest HU admission data, the average ACT composite score of accepted students is 24. 

Applicants must remember that the HU average ACT score generally lies between 22 and 27. Therefore, anyone with an ACT score below 22 has a hard time securing a seat. On the other hand, having a score above 27 offers a competitive chance of selection. 42% of applicants at HU submit their ACT scores for admission. This suggests that raising the composite ACT score is crucial to strengthen your application.

Percentile ACT MathACT EnglishComposite ACT

The following table shows an applicant’s chances of selection at HU according to composite ACT score:

Composite ACT scoreSelection chances
Above 2752% and more
Less than 20Less than 18%

Howard University SAT Score Requirements

According to Howard University admission requirements, candidates must submit their composite SAT score to gain a seat in their preferred course. A high SAT score reflects your academic excellence, which is essential for convincing the admission committee that you are a good fit for the university. 

Last year’s admission statistics show that the average SAT score of admitted students is 1187. Nearly 75% of applicants send their composite scores for admission to HU. The university ranks #4 in Columbia for considering the highest GPA while selecting candidates for admission. However, in certain cases, HU has admitted candidates with an ACT of 1060.

Percentile SAT MathSAT ReadingComposite SAT

The table below suggests the applicant’s success chances at HU according to composite SAT score:

Composite SAT scoreAdmission chances
Above 1260Above 52% 
1195-126038 to 52 %
1130-119526 to 58%
1065-113017 to 26%
Less than 1065Below 17%

Tips to Enhance Your HU Selection Chances

Since Howard University’s acceptance rate is very low, it is important to consider all the factors that can help you prepare a solid application.

Following are a few tips to help you earn an edge over other applicants:

  • Focus on increasing your GPA: Your high school GPA is the first factor considered during the admission procedure. Having a good GPA is crucial to saving your application from being rejected. To earn a good GPA, high school students must take challenging AP or IB courses. One of the best ways to convince the admission officers about your competitiveness is to provide authentic information for taking college preparatory A-G courses.
  • SAT superscore policy: The university highly considers candidates with high SAT scores. High school students are highly advised to take multiple tests to improve their section scores. 

HU requires applicants to submit all SAT scores. However, the university only considers the highest section score from the submitted test score to calculate the composite score. 

  • Write creative essays: Essay writing is not the primary selection criteria at HU. However the university is known to accept students who have the potential to draft a strong essay to convey their words. Essays are excellent media to connect with the admission authorities and inform them about your career targets and how HU is the best choice to help you achieve your goals.
  • Take up volunteer and extracurricular work: Candidates who portray extraordinary personal qualities by participating in extracurricular activities have a good chance of distinguishing themselves from their peers. Having an authentic document of community participation, leadership in activities, club participation, etc., is valuable to the university.


Getting selected at Howard University is difficult. Merely meeting the academic score requirements is not enough. Some applicants with good GPAs and test scores get rejected for lacking personal potential and talent. If HU is at the top of your priority list, you must take the necessary steps to meet all the admission requirements and provide genuine documents to qualify for the strict admission procedure.  

howard university acceptance rate


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