Academic advisers are professors or staff members assigned to students, beginning the summer before their first semester. Advisers help students choose their classes to fulfill core and major/minor requirements.
Advanced Placement courses are college-level courses taught in high school. Receiving a 4 or 5 on the AP exam (issued by the College Board) can result in receiving college credit for introductory college courses.
Undergraduate degree that generally requires four years of full-time study. Students must declare a major in a particular field of study and choose a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree path.
This optional, but encouraged face-to-face or virtual interaction can be scheduled beginning May of a student’s junior year, and helps the admission representative get to know a student beyond their application. Visit ursinus.edu/visit to schedule your virtual or in person senior interview.
Whenever possible, we encourage students to tour our campus to get the best feel for day-to-day life at Ursinus. When an in person tour is not available, we encourage touring campus in less than 6 minutes with our virtual tour.
Refers to a student’s standing in comparison with their classmates. It’s often determined by grade point average and is expressed as a percentile.
A brief composition on a single subject, required as part of the application process for admission.
An event at which colleges and universities sign up to present themselves to potential students.
This is when a college or university admission representative visits a high school or community site for the purpose of recruiting students for admission.
These are the steps you take in the early phases of college planning in order to identify, locate, and investigate college-level programs that meet your individual interests, abilities, and needs as a student.
Colleges are generally smaller institutions that focus on undergraduate education while universities are typically larger institutions that offer a greater number of graduate degree options.
The Common Application (informally known as the Common App) is one of two free methods for applying to Ursinus College. The Common App has more than 800 member colleges and universities. There is a Common Application for First-Year Admission and a Common Application for Transfer Admission. Both versions allow the application to be filled out once online and submitted to all schools with the same information going to each.
At Ursinus, you can take advantage of exciting partnerships with several universities that offer students seamless access to advanced degree and professional programs, including a BSN with Villanova’s College of Nursing, pre-engineering at Columbia University, graduate programs with the University of the Sciences, and more!
Common courses that all Ursinus students must take, regardless of major. This includes the Common Intellectual Experience, a first year seminar that all students take their first two semesters on campus.
Demonstrated interest tells a college or university that a student is interested in their institution, and can include visits to campus, contact with the Office of Admission, requests for information or attending high school visits. Students can also demonstrate interest by completing our “Why Ursinus” supplemental essay question as part of the application for admission.
A round of admission where students apply to—and hear from—Ursinus in the fall of their senior year. This option is non-binding, and allows students fullest scholarship consideration.
A binding decision that lets the college know that if admitted, you’ll enroll at the institution. Students may only apply Early decision to one institution. Ursinus offers a fall and spring round of ED.
The XLP is hands-on experience required to graduate, that is tied to the student’s area of academic interest. One key component of the XLP is for you to learn to shift your perspective from the classroom to settings abroad, to the workplace, and to the laboratory. Students may complete their Experiential Learning Project requirement in several different ways. Most students enjoy doing two or more: independent research or creative project; participation in Summer Fellows or comparable summer research program; study abroad; internship, student teaching or successful completion of the first two years of engineering school (pre-engineering students only).
Extracurricular activities are passions outside of academic interest. Many colleges (Ursinus included) are interested in who you are as a whole person, and want to know about all of your passions. In fact, we care about your extracurriculars so much, that we offer 13 specialty scholarships designed to reward students for their passions.
A college student who is the first in their family to go to college.
Represents the average of a student’s final grades in all their courses. Ursinus will recalculate a student’s GPA based upon their core courses (English, Math, Science, Social Science, Foreign Language) and any electives taken at an Honors or AP level. A student’s recalculated GPA will likely be slightly lower than what may appear on their transcript.
Social and academic organizations for college students formed to pursue a common goal or ideals. At Ursinus, approximately 18% of the student body participates in “Greek life.”
An applicant who is the child, sibling, grandchild, niece or nephew of a current Ursinus student or alumnus. Ursinus offers a $2,500 scholarship to admitted legacies.
Interdisciplinary study of humanities, social and natural sciences meant to give students a broad spectrum of knowledge.
A course of study that a student decides they’d like to focus on within a degree. Many students go on to major/minor, or even double major!
A secondary focus meant to add to the value of the student’s major or pursue another area of interest. A minor consists of a smaller amount of courses required than for a major in the same discipline.
Placements enable our faculty and staff to enroll students in courses that match their skill level in a given subject. All students must complete the foreign language and mathematics placements. If you intend on taking chemistry at Ursinus, please also complete the chemistry placement.
Public colleges and universities are funded by state governments, while private colleges and universities are not publicly-owned, often relying on fundraising and tuition payments to operate.
See grade point average.
RAs are assigned to all campus residence halls, suites and houses. They introduce new students to campus life, serve as peer helpers, and build community within the residence halls. Primarily, they create communities that enable students to grow personally, intellectually and socially. Their initiatives reflect our Student Affairs values of respect, personal responsibility, communication, service, and social justice.
The registrar’s office is responsible for many administrative academic duties like registering students for classes, evaluating incoming and preparing outgoing student transcripts, and preparing class schedules.
RD is non-binding, and offers a later application round for students who choose to apply the spring of their senior year.
The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is the standardized test for non-native speakers of English applying to American colleges and universities among other institutions.
Official record of courses taken and grades earned at a given institution.
A student who has taken courses and received credit at other institutions before enrolling at Ursinus. Students can transfer as early as the spring of their freshman year. Transfer students will likely be eligible for transfer credit based upon their completed coursework from their transferring institution.
Course credits carried over from one institution to another.
A student enrolled in courses but who has not yet declared a major. All students enter Ursinus undecided, and must declare their major in their sophomore year.
An admission decision that is neither an offer nor a rejection. Waitlisted students will receive a decision from the college at a later time, after more information has been received (usually, second semester senior grades). Waitlisted students are encouraged to keep in contact with the College throughout this process as we collect more information.
Student Financial Services
The estimated cost of attending this institution for one academic year. The COA is a combination of both direct and indirect costs.
Direct costs: Expenses the student/family pays to the college. These are the costs that a student is billed for and includes tuition, room, and board.
Indirect costs: Expenses incurred as a result of attendance that the student/family may pay to a third party (merchant, landlord, etc.) other than the college.
The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is a measure of your family’s financial strength and is calculated according to a formula established by federal law when you submit the FAFSA. Your family’s taxed and untaxed income, assets, and benefits (such as unemployment or Social Security) are all considered in the formula. Also considered are your family size and the number of family members who will attend college during the year. Note: Your EFC is not the amount of money your family will have to pay for college nor is it the amount of federal student aid you will receive. It is a number used by your school to calculate the amount of federal student aid you are eligible to receive.
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is a document prospective and returning students and their families complete to determine eligibility for federal loans and grants. Completing and submitting the FAFSA is free and easier than ever, and it gives you access to the largest source of financial aid to pay for college or career school. Ursinus recommends all applicants fill out the FAFSA. Fill out your FAFSA at https://studentaid.gov.
Federal Direct Loans are loans that FAFSA filers are eligible to receive if they meet basic eligibility requirements. These loans have fixed interest rates that are established by federal legislation on July 1 of each calendar year. Eligible FAFSA filers are able to borrow a maximum of $5,500 (up to $3,500 Subsidized) as freshmen, $6,500 (up to $4,500 Subsidized) as sophomores, and $7,500 (up to $5,500 Subsidized) as juniors and seniors.
Subsidized Loan: Federal Direct Subsidized Loans are awarded based on financial need. The U.S Department of Education pays all interest accrued on Subsidized Loans while the student is enrolled in school at least half-time, during the 6-month post-enrollment grace period and deferment.
Unsubsidized Loan: Unsubsidized Loans will accrue interest starting the day that they are disbursed to a student’s account. Interest can be paid while the student is enrolled. Any unpaid interest will be capitalized (added to the principal loan balance) when the loan enters repayment.
Grants are need-based forms of financial aid that do not need to be repaid. Federal grants are awarded through the FAFSFA. State grants are awarded through the student’s home state and usually have different eligibility requirements than that of the FAFSFA.
Federal Work Study helps college students with financial need get part-time jobs to help pay for day-to-day educational expenses. Federal Work Study jobs are federally-funded. Federal Work Study is not applied towards a student’s bill because the funds are earned as the student works on campus.
Financial aid is any type of award that is offered to a student outside of the family’s contribution. Financial aid includes, but is not limited to, scholarships, grants, loans, and work study.
The figure derived by subtracting the Expected Family Contribution from the FAFSA from the Cost of Attendance. Financial need is used to determine need-based financial aid eligibility.
Financial aid that is either in the form of a scholarship or grant. This is money that does not have to be paid back to the school or a lender.
Grant: Gift aid awarded to the student based on need. Some examples are Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG, Estimated PA State Grant, or UC Fund.
Scholarship: Gift aid awarded to the student that is typically based on merit or a combination of merit and need, such as academic excellence, talent, affiliation with various groups, or career aspirations.
Net cost or net price is the amount of direct costs remaining after disbursable financial aid is subtracted.
Tuition Remission is a program that Ursinus College offers to full-time employees and their spouse and/or dependent children that can cover up to the full amount of tuition. Eligibility for Tuition Remission is determined by the Human Resources department. Please visit https://www.ursinus.edu/offices/human-resources/ or contact the Human Resources department for more information.