Thinking about college brings many emotions. You love to fantasize about how your experience will be and where you will end up. Applying to college isn’t a walk in the park, there is the application itself, essays, and then–the fee! You may not even attend this school yet you owe them money? That seems a bit unfair. These schools recognize that you want choices. You apply to multiple schools and want to know all your options–but these fees limit you. They can really add up if you apply to a lot of schools.
However, at these top schools you don’t need to worry! Check out these colleges with no application fee. Score!
Why would a school have no application fee?
There are many reasons why schools do not require a fee to apply to their school. A lot of it is to increase applicants. It can be a marketing ploy. They want students to see that they are open and fair and you should apply to their school because there is no fee. This increases their applicant pool which allows them to be more selective. Some of the top public institutions that don’t require application fees are the United States military colleges- -the Military Academy, Naval Academy, and Air Force Academy. Another impressive school is Wellesley College, which is a private, all-girls college in MA. Their acceptance rate is 30% and boasts an impressive ACT composite score of 33. So while these schools may be cheap to apply, there is nothing invaluable about the education you will receive.
Colleges with no application fee that rank in the top 100 schools in the U.S.:
- United States Military Academy, #40
- United States Naval Academy, #11
- Carleton College, #41
- Wellesley College, #43
- Grinnell College, #50
- United States Air Force Academy, #52
- Colby College, #70
- Oberlin College, #85
- Kenyon College, #75
- Smith College, #99
Other schools who do not charge prospective students for applying include:
- Reed College
- Bryn Mawr
- Union College
- Kalamazoo College
- Sewanee- University of the South
- Trinity University
- Rhodes College
- Denison University
- Centre College
- Case Western Reserve University
In addition to colleges making their application process free, a nonprofit named Common App is helping making college admissions easier for students. The Common app is a one time application where you fill out all of your essential college information and then they pass that along to the nearly 700 colleges they are partnered with. If you are wondering if you should fill out the Common App, probably. Read more about the Common Application here.
If you have a lot of interest in many schools, we suggest using the common app and using our tool to see if you are matched with these schools who have no application fee!
If you don’t feel that these schools are a good fit for you, but are struggling to pay the application fee where you want to go, read this article on the application fee.