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    Penn State: The Pennsylvania State University


    Children have to be educated, but they have also to be left to educate themselves   – Ernest Dimnet 
    The Pennsylvania State University 1

    Source: PennState

    The Pennsylvania State University, established in 1855, is a research university with campuses in 24 locations and a global online presence. Initially focused on agricultural science, Penn State’s mission has expanded to include teaching, research, and public service, providing world-class education to a diverse student body.

     History & Campus

    Founded with a 200-acre donation (by James Irvin) in Centre County, Evan Pugh, the first president, integrated European education with a practical curriculum. Penn State became Pennsylvania’s land-grant institution through the Morrill Land-Grant Act of 1862.

    The University’s research department emphasizes discovery, collaboration, and interdisciplinary approaches to drive human and economic development, enhance global understanding, and advance various professions by expanding knowledge and its applications.

    Ethnic Diversity

    Penn State Tuition and Costs

    Considering costs is crucial when deciding on college education investments. At Penn State, the university provides transparent tuition rates set annually by the Board of Trustees, with room and board estimates. The university advises to budget for additional expenses like travel, personal needs, and books. Tuition rates differ based on campus, program, student level, and residency.

    Penn State University Park Tuition and Fees

    PA Resident Non-PA Resident International
    Tuition and Fees $19,672 $39,626 $41,126
    Room and Meals $12,984 $12,984 $12,984
    TOTAL $32,656 $52,610 $54,110

    Commonwealth Campuses Tuition and Fees

    PA Resident Non-PA Resident International
    Tuition and Fees $13,824 - $15,388 $23,316 - $26,112 $24,716 - $27,612
    Room and Meals $12,984 $12,984 $12,984
    TOTAL $26,808 - $28,372 $36,300 - $39,096 $37,700 - $40,596


    Before applying, the first step is to consider what type of applicant you are. – a First-Year Student, International Student, Transfer Student, Dual Admissions Program, Adult Students, Military & Veteran Student and Undocumented Student.

    1. Application procedure for Freshman:

    Apply to Penn State using either the MyPennState application or the Common App. Penn State doesn’t favor one over the other and suggests using the method that suits the students best.

    2. Application Fee:

    Application fees are non-refundable:

    • U.S. applicants for degree programs, post-baccalaureate, and graduate credit certificate programs: $65

    • International applicants for degree programs, post-baccalaureate, and graduate credit certificate programs (for spring, summer, or fall 2024 admission): $65

    • International applicants for degree programs, post-baccalaureate, and graduate credit certificate programs (for spring 2025 admission or later): $85

    • Non-degree admission (U.S. or international): $30

    3. Who Should Apply as a Freshman?

    • Current high school seniors
    • Students with a high school diploma or GED and no prior college coursework
    • Students with a high school diploma or GED and up to 17 college credits from a regionally accredited institution
    • Current high school students enrolled in college courses (dual enrollment)
    • Students who attended Penn State on a non-degree basis

     4. Required Materials:

    Academic Eligibility Requirements: 

    • Baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution 

    • Tertiary (postsecondary) degree that is deemed comparable to a four-year bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution.

    Academic Eligibility Requirements by country

    Transcript Requirements

    • A mark sheet 
    • Record of courses 
    • Degree, study, or provisional certificate 
    • Original diploma 
    • Diploma supplement 
    • Other official documents that are specific to a country  
    • Copies of official English translations in addition to native language documents for non English speaker

    English Proficiency

    At Penn State, English is the language of instruction. International applicants must show English proficiency through one of the following methods.

    • Applicants must hold a bachelor’s or graduate degree from a country where English is the primary language and the instruction language at the institution is English.
    • Applicants must have completed Penn State’s Intensive English Communications Program (IECP) and obtained certification.
    • For TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), applicants need a total score of a minimum 80, with a speaking section score of at least 19 for the internet-based test (iBT).
    • For the IELTS (International English Language Testing System), applicants require a minimum composite score of 6.5 for the IELTS Academic Test.

    Provisional Admission:

    • For TOEFL, a total score of at least 80 is required, with a speaking section score ranging from 15 to 19 for the internet-based test (iBT).
    • For TOEFL, a total score of at least 76 is required, with a speaking section score of 19 or greater for the internet-based test (iBT).
    • For IELTS, a composite score between 6.0 and 6.4 is needed.

    Certain graduate programs may mandate all international applicants to provide a TOEFL or IELTS score, irrespective of their academic history and country of origin.

    College Admission Calculator

    5. Application Deadline for 1st year students:

    Fall and Summer Starting Semesters

    Admission Timeline

    Decision Plan Application Available Complete Application Admission Notification Deadline for Student Notification of Enrollment
    Early Action August 1 by November 1* by December 24 May 15
    Rolling Admission August 1 by December 1 by January 31 May 15
    August 1 after December 1 Rolling May 15

    Applicants undergo a modified rolling admissions process. Some programs have limited spots and set application dates. The Early Action deadline for first-year, domestic students is November 1. For those not applying Early Action and all domestic students, we suggest completing the application, including all materials, by December 1.

    Recommended Reading: Best Education Systems in The World

    Spring Starting Semester Admission Timeline

    Decision Plan Application Available Application Submission Date Admission Notification by: Deadline for Student Notification of Enrollment
    Rolling Admission June 1 December 1 Mid-December Refer to offer notification

    University Acceptance Criteria

    Acceptance Rate 55%
    SAT Range* 1210-1390
    ACT Range* 26-31
    High School GPA* 3.7

    Rankings and Recognitions

    For over 150 years, Penn State has been a leader in higher education. The university shines globally in research, education, and community impact consistently among the top thirty research universities. With record-breaking research spending exceeding $1.239B, the university ranks in the top 10 in twelve disciplines by the National Science Foundation.

    University Rankings

    Ranking Position
    Penn State ranked in the nation in faculty Fulbright Scholar awards for 2023-24 #1
    U.S. News World Report’s “Best Colleges” ranking for 2024 #60th - 435
    National public universities #28
    Association of American Universities public institutions 23
    Best Undergraduate Business Programs #21 - 523
    Management (tie) #17
    Accounting (tie) #25
    Marketing (tie) #24
    Finance #50
    Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs #19 - 208
    QS World University Rankings 2024 #83
    Public universities U.S. institutions #8
    World University Rankings by Subject #49 - 55
    Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) 2023 #101-150
    ARWU 2022 Global Ranking of Academic Subjects #100
    U.S. News & World Report “Best Global Universities” 2022-23 #84


    The Pennsylvania State University is a place where academic excellence meets vibrant campus life. With its rich history, impressive rankings, and commitment to student success, it’s no wonder that it remains a top choice for students seeking higher education in 2025. We encourage you to explore the university further and consider it as a potential destination for your educational journey.

    Moonpreneur is dedicated to preparing your child for success in college and the evolving world of AI. To kickstart your child’s journey in entrepreneurship, sign up for a free 60-minute workshop today!



    Nilima, armed with a keyboard and creativity, transforms ideas into engaging articles that captivate readers. From blog posts to social media content, Nilima's expertise lies in delivering concise yet impactful messages that leave a lasting impression. She's the go-to wordsmith for turning concepts into captivating written gems.
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