Duke Undergraduate Admissions

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Contact the Admissions Office for more information: (919) 684-3214.

1) What does Duke look for in an applicant?

Every year, thousands of the world's best students apply to Duke. They come from public, private and parochial schools, and from all points on the economic, political, and geographic spectrum. Most have graduated in the top 10 percent of their secondary school class. These top students are attracted to Duke for its academic challenge, stimulating campus environment, and reputation for educating men and women of influence and achievement. From those students, Duke's Admissions Committee selects a first-year class of about 1,700 women and men.

First, please understand that we do not have a minimum required score for either the SAT or ACT, nor do we have a minimum required GPA or class rank.

We do not report average SAT or ACT scores, but you can view the middle 50 percent range for standardized test scores of last year's admitted students here. Likewise, we do not quote an average grade point average. We ask for a student’s GPA and class rank, when available, but we also realize that many schools consider GPA on different scales and some schools do not consider GPA or class rank at all. We consider this information in the context of what guidance counselors tell us about their schools.

Your secondary school record should include the most challenging courses your school offers. We recommend four years of English and at least three years of mathematics, natural science, foreign language and social studies. We also encourage you to enroll in advanced-level work in as many of these areas as possible. We generally expect students to enroll in five academic courses per year, and if a student does not take four years in a particular subject area, it should be replaced with an academic course of equal rigor. If you are applying to the Pratt School of Engineering, calculus is required before you enroll. We also strongly recommend, but do not require, that you have taken physics.

Successful Duke applicants typically have significant extracurricular commitments, all of which we value. Most students admitted to Duke have demonstrated, in a word, impact. In some venue they have made a difference. It might be in the classroom, in the community, or on the athletic field. It could be doing one thing brilliantly, or several things exceedingly well.

We do not track the number of contacts or visits to campus an applicant has made. Although we are always glad when students visit campus, demonstrated interest is not an advantage in the admissions process. We prefer to focus on a student's strengths and accomplishments. 

2) When and how do I apply for admission?

You may use either the Common Application or Universal College Application plus the required Duke Student Supplement. Applicants may submit the forms either online or on paper. For complete information on how to apply to Duke, click here.

3) I am a homeschooled student / international student / transfer student. Are there application requirements specific to my circumstances?

Homeschooled, international or transfer students should visit the application instructions located here for more information.

Advanced Placement:
Duke recognizes the Advanced Placement Program of the College Board and grants a limited amount of elective credit and placement into advanced courses for scores of 4 or 5 on most AP exams. AP exams may not be taken once students have enrolled at Duke. Refer to each school's policy regarding AP credit: Trinity College of Arts and Sciences and Pratt School of Engineering.

International Baccalaureate and International Placement Credit:
Entering students who have completed internationally recognized college-level examinations with high scores will receive international placement credit in essentially the same way that credit is awarded for AP exams. You can refer to the websites mentioned above for more information.

4) When and how should I schedule a visit to Duke?

Visit our 'Plan a Visit' section of the site to learn more.