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1425 W. Lincoln Hwy.
Dekalb, IL 60115-2828
p. 800-892-3050
w. www.niu.edu

Northern Illinois University

Northern Illinois University Rating: 4.0/5 (29 votes)

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Introduction

Northern Illinois University is a teaching and research institution with a diverse and international student body of more than 24,000 students. NIU opened in 1899 as the Northern Illinois State Normal School, founded to prepare college-educated teachers. It became Northern Illinois State College in 1955, and Northern Illinois University in 1957.

The university also operates education centers in Hoffman Estates, Naperville and Rockford, Ill., to offer programs at times and locations designed to accommodate student needs. The 756-acre main campus is located in DeKalb, Ill., about 65 miles west of Chicago.

Academics

Students who attend Northern Illinois University can choose from 63 undergraduate majors offered by seven degree-granting colleges: Business, Education, Engineering, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Health and Human Sciences, Visual and Performing Arts, and Pre-Professional Studies. NIU also offers 78 graduate programs, including the juris doctorate, doctoral education degrees and 20 Ph.D. programs.

The student to faculty ratio at NIU is 17 to 1, and the average class size is 28 students. The average class size for freshman 100-level introductory classes is approximately 31 students. Eighty percent of NIU’s full-time faculty hold doctoral degrees or the highest degrees in their fields.

NIU also offers online courses that permit students to blend their traditional education experience with an online learning experience. NIU offers more than 35 online courses from six of its colleges. Many online courses combine face-to-face meetings and field trips with online activities that include lectures and group projects.

A University Honors Program designs individualized programs of study for qualifying students and employs its top teaching faculty in the program. Honors students get priority registration privileges, a curriculum in a seminar format, the opportunity to live in the coed, smoke-free honors house in Douglas Residence Hall, and the chance to complete an independent Capstone project.

NIU also offers extensive study abroad experiences that take students to more than 75 different countries, ranging from Argentina to Vietnam. Programs includes semester long and year long stays, and shorter term studies abroad in programs led by faculty members. You can take a Black Studies class in Ghana and South Africa, study media and culture in Ireland, or learn about youth, schools and culture in Japan. NIU also has an extensive program at Oxford’s Oriel College in England, and arranges a long list of international internships for students.

Students can receive academic support from NIU’s Academic Advising Center, which offers ACCESS, a campus-wide free support and tutoring service, and walk-in tutoring centers in three campus residence halls. Students can also ask for free individual study skills consultation, and the University Writing Center in Stevenson Towers South provides free help with writing tasks.

Most Popular Fields of Study

Admissions

Northern Illinois is considered a selective university, with an acceptance rate of 58.5 percent. Students looking at NIU need to have completed a minimum of 24 credits in high school and attained a minimum grade point average of 2.0. The average freshman ACT score at NIU is 22.

NIU requires the usual documents for admissions, including your SAT or ACT scores, your high school transcript and the completed application. About 76 percent of freshmen enrolled at NIU return for a second year there.

If you’d like to visit NIU, the university holds weekday tours of the campus with student ambassadors, which includes an information session and free lunch in a campus dining hall. NIU also hosts special events throughout the school year including an admitted student day, Transfer Get Information Fridays (also known as TGIF), a junior preview day and open houses in the fall.

Financial Aid

To apply for any type of financial aid, NIU students must complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form with NIU listed as one of their school choices.

Like most universities, Northern Illinois University offers students loans, grants and scholarships. Federal grants and loans available to students include the Academic Competitiveness Grant, the Pell Grant, the Perkins Loan, the PLUS loan, the Stafford Loan, the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, and the national Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent grant.

State assistance is also available to Illinois students, including the General Assembly Scholarship, the Illinois National Guard Grant, the Illinois State Monetary Award Program, the Illinois Veteran Grant, state special education scholarships, and Merit Recognition Scholarships.

Each college at NIU also offers dozens of scholarships based on a student’s major and interest.

Work study jobs are also available through NIU residence halls, the University Libraries, the Holmes Student Center, and most university departments where clerical help is hired.

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 2234th for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Illinois.

Students

With 24,000 students, Northern Illinois University is like a small city. There are five large residence halls on the campus, numerous places to eat, and even an extensive bus system that operates day and night to transport students across the busy grounds. There are more than 200 student clubs and organizations at NIU, and 36 Greek organizations.

On-Campus Housing

NIU’s residence halls are large structures, some 13 stories high. Grant Towers, a complex of four, 13-story towers, features double and single rooms, a Grab ‘N Go breakfast bar and the Northern Lights Grill, a popular Sunday brunch spot. Lincoln Hall, home mostly to freshmen, consists of four, five-story wings, most of the rooms doubles. Two floors of Lincoln are four-person suites. Douglas Hall, also a five-story complex of four wings, features double rooms. Douglas also offers a number of learning communities including Honors House, International House, Science, Engineering, & Technology House, and Quiet Lifestyle. Douglas is home to one of the campus’ popular restaurants, Dog Pound Deli, and features a computer lab, tutoring center, and wireless Internet in all lounge areas.

Neptune Hall is a double occupancy hall with a variety of learning communities including the Fine Arts House, an Acohol Free floor, all-women floors, all-men floors and a quiet lifestyle floor. Neptune features a student art gallery, music practice rooms, a computer lab, wireless Internet in all lounges, the Neptune all-you-can-eat dining hall, and Trident Grab n’ Go.

The Stevenson Complex consists of four 13-story towers, with two towers restricted to upper class students. Stevenson features singles, doubles, and suites with and without bathrooms. Stevenson also has a popular food court dining hall and the Stevenson Expressway late-night grill. There is an International Student community at Stevenson.

Dining on Campus

Dining on campus includes dining halls at Grant Towers, Lincoln Hall, Douglas Hall, Stevenson Towers and Neptune Hall, along with Grab n’ Go takeout eateries and cafes.

You can also dine at the Holmes Student Center, which is the center of activity on the DeKalb campus. Holmes features the Blackhawk Food Court; Ellington’s, a sit-down restaurant where lunches are served by students enrolled in the School of Family, Consumer, and Nutrition Sciences; a Subway sandwich shop; and a coffeehouse.

Other Amenities

Students can also head to Holmes in search of places to study, computer labs, the campus bookstore, and banking services. There’s even a full-service hotel at Holmes for campus visitors.

NIU students can also find on-campus services that include a health care clinic, a child care center, a career advising office, and a diversity resource center.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics

Athletics

The Northern Illinois University Huskies compete in the NCAA Division 1 and are members of the Mid American Conference. Men’s intercollegiate teams are baseball, basketball, football, golf, soccer, tennis and wrestling. Women’s intercollegiate teams are basketball, cross country, golf, gymnastics, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field, and volleyball.

NIU has some pretty impressive athletic facilities, beginning with the four-year-old Jeffrey and Kimberly Yordon Center, which benefits all 467 student-athletes and all the intercollegiate sports programs on campus. The Yordon Center provides Huskie student-athletes with an academic support center that includes tutorial rooms, group classrooms, and a computer lab. The Yordon Center also provides athletes with a strength and conditioning center, an athletic training room with strength equipment and a four-lane sprint track, and a health center with two rehabilitation pools, a drug testing area and a doctor’s office.

Huskie Stadium is the home of NIU football and includes refurbished practice areas for the university’s wrestling and women’s gymnastics teams. In the stadium’s 44 seasons, more than 3.4 million people have watched NIU football.

The university’s $36 million Convocation Center was completed in 2002 and is home to NIU men’s and women’s basketball teams, along with volleyball, gymnastics, wrestling and indoor track and field. The Convocation Center seats up to 10,000 spectators, has a 200-meter track, and has hosted musicians, comedians and trade shows in addition to athletic competitions.

Bibliography

  • NIU | Northern Illinois University | Applying | Best College | US News.” US News & World Report | News & Rankings | Best Colleges, Best Hospitals, and More. US News & World Report. Web. 31 May 2011.
  • Northern Illinois Huskies Northern Illinois – Northern Illinois Official Athletic Site. Northern Illinois University. Web. 31 May 2011.
  • NIU – Northern Illinois University. Northern Illinois University. Web. 31 May 2011.

Information Summary

Ranks 40th in Illinois and 982nd overall
See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list

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Campus Crime Statistics

Ranks 0th in Illinois and 270th overall on StateUniversity.com‘s Safe School Index
  Incidents per 100 Students
Aggravated assault 2 0.01
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter N/A N/A
Rape 5 0.02
Robbery N/A N/A
Arson 3 0.01
Burglary 26 0.11
Larceny N/A N/A
Vehicle theft 1 0.00
Arrest 63 0.27

Demographics – Main Campus and Surrounding Areas

Reported area around or near Dekalb, IL 60115-2828
Surrounding communitySmall suburb (inside urban area but outside city, pop. under 100,000)
Total Population42,372 (40,687 urban / 1,685 rural)
Households14,487 (2.42 people per house)
Median Household Income$36,323
Families7,375 (3.03 people per family)

Carnegie Foundation Classification

Research Universities (high research activity)
UndergraduateBalanced arts & sciences/professions, high graduate coexistence
GraduateComprehensive doctoral (no medical/veterinary)
Undergraduate PopulationFull-time four-year, selective, higher transfer-in
EnrollmentHigh undergraduate
Size & SettingLarge four-year, primarily residential

General Characteristics

Title IV EligibilityParticipates in Title IV federal financial aid programs
Highest offeringDoctoral degree
Calendar SystemSemester
Years of college work requiredN/A
Variable Tuition
Religious AffiliationN/A
Congressional District1716

Special Learning Opportunities

Distance LearningN/A
ROTC — Army / Navy / Air Force  —   /   / 
Study Abroad
Weekend College
Teacher Certification

Student Tuition Costs and Fees


Ranks 781st for total cost of attendance
  In District In State Out of State
Effective as of 2014-09-19
FT Undergraduate Tuition $8,601 $8,601 $18,143
FT Undergraduate Required Fees $3,745 $3,745 $3,781
PT Undergraduate per Credit Hour $427 $427 $763
FT Graduate Tuition $8,216 $8,216 $16,432
FT Graduate Required Fees $3,760 $3,760 $3,760
PT Graduate per Credit Hour $432 $432 $775
Total Cost of Attendance — On-Campus $28,342 $28,342 $37,438
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus w/out Family $28,342 $28,342 $37,438
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus with Family $16,938 $16,938 $26,034

Student Tuition Costs for Professional Fields

  In State Out of State
Effective as of 2014-09-19
Law Degree — Tuition $15,624 $31,248
Law Degree — Required Fees $5,571 $5,571

Student Tuition Cost History and Trends

Prior year cost comparison
  In District In State Out of State
Published Tuition & Fees $12,422 $13,066 $12,422 $13,066 $21,480 $22,554
  Cost (regardless of residency)
Effective as of 2014-09-19
Books & Supplies $1,400(N/C)
On-Campus – Room & Board $10,306 $11,036
On-Campus – Other Expenses $3,232 $2,498
Off-Campus w/out Family – Room & Board $9,346 $11,036
Off-Campus w/out Family – Other Expenses $3,232 $2,498
Off-Campus with Family – Room & Board $3,232 $2,498

Admission Details

Effective as of 2014-09-19
Application Fee RequiredN/A
Undergraduate Application Fee$40
Graduate Application Fee$40
First Professional Application FeeN/A
Applicants 25,914 (11,828 male / 14,086 female)
Admitted 14,545 (6,691 male / 7,854 female)
Admission rate 56%
First-time Enrollment 2,679 (1,282 male / 1,397 female)
FT Enrollment 2,630 (1,261 male / 1,369 female)
PT Enrollment 49 (21 male / 28 female)
Total Enrollment21,138

Admission Criteria

 = Required,   = Recommended,   = Neither required nor recommended
Open Admissions
Secondary School GPA / Rank / Record  /   / 
College Prep. Completion
RecommendationsN/A
Formal competency demoN/A
Admission test scores
TOEFL
Other testsN/A

Admission Credits Accepted

Dual Credit
Life Experience
Advanced Placement (AP)

Athletics - Association Memberships

Sports / Athletic Conference Memberships NCAA
NCAA Football Conference Mid-American Conference
NCAA Basketball Conference Mid-American Conference
NCAA Baseball Conference Mid-American Conference
NCAA Track & Field Conference Mid-American Conference

ACT Test Admission

951st for 75pctl scores
Applicants submitting ACT results 96%
Verbal scores (25/75 %ile) 19 / 25
Math scores (25/75 %ile) 18 / 25
Cumulative scores (25/75 %ile) 19 / 24

SAT Test Admission

746th for 75pctl scores
Applicants submitting SAT results 3%
Verbal scores (25/75 %ile) 450 / 550
Math scores (25/75 %ile) 450 / 580
Cumulative scores (25/75 %ile) 900 / 1130

Student Services

Remedial Services
Academic / Career Counseling
PT Cost-defraying Employment
Career Placement
On-Campus Day Care
Library Facility

Student Living

First-time Room / Board Required
Dorm Capacity6,000
Meals per WeekN/A
Room Fee$8,910
Board Fee$2,880

Student Completion / Graduation Demographics

 
Total 205 414 443 266 7 3,657 94 5,212
Accounting 15 7 19 25 185 3 263
Adult and Continuing Education Administration 1 12 1 2 13 30
Anthropology 2 3 4 1 30 41
Apparel and Textiles, General 1 1 1 17 1 21
Art History, Criticism and Conservation 1 7 8
Art Teacher Education 1 1 26 29
Art/Art Studies, General 2 2 2 18 25
Atmospheric Sciences and Meteorology, General 16 1 17
Biology/Biological Sciences, General 5 7 10 10 1 113 1 150
Business Administration and Management, General 19 18 23 39 1 222 5 331
Business Family and Consumer Sciences/Human Sciences 1 1
Chemistry, General 2 2 22 2 29
Clinical Laboratory Science/Medical Technology/Technologist 1 3 23 29
Communication Sciences and Disorders, General 5 8 3 95 2 116
Community Health Services/Liaison/Counseling 2 18 12 7 50 2 92
Computer Science 55 1 2 13 64 1 138
Counselor Education/School Counseling and Guidance Services 7 2 2 1 31 43
Curriculum and Instruction 17 17
Dietetics/Dietitian 6 9 7 74 98
Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts, General 2 3 1 41 2 51
Early Childhood Education and Teaching 2 2 1 34 2 41
Economics, General 1 7 7 7 35 2 61
Education, General 1 1
Educational Administration and Supervision, Other 2 1 1 18 22
Educational Evaluation and Research 1 1
Educational Leadership and Administration, General 1 3 1 49 1 56
Educational Psychology 1 1 2
Educational/Instructional Technology 1 6 1 31 39
Electrical and Electronics Engineering 16 3 4 5 31 62
Elementary Education and Teaching 5 12 1 119 2 142
Engineering Technology, General 6 10 3 52 3 75
Engineering/Industrial Management 1 2 9 14
English Language and Literature, General 14 5 2 108 3 136
Environmental Studies 1 5 1 8
Finance, General 5 8 9 8 78 109
Fine/Studio Arts, General 6 4 98 5 117
French Language and Literature 1 1 1 5 9
Geography 1 2 1 33 38
Geology/Earth Science, General 1 1 18 20
German Language and Literature 4 4
Health Teacher Education 1 8 9
Health and Physical Education/Fitness, General 1 5 4 52 2 65
Health/Medical Preparatory Programs, Other 16 16 16 1 103 2 164
History, General 1 5 1 62 3 74
Human Development and Family Studies, General 1 50 14 8 87 1 165
Human Services, General 1 4 6
Industrial Engineering 7 3 1 2 12 26
Journalism 9 4 42 3 59
Liberal Arts and Sciences/Liberal Studies 11 12 3 62 1 91
Management Information Systems, General 12 2 4 3 14 1 37
Management Science 2 6 8 3 41 60
Marketing/Marketing Management, General 2 6 15 5 112 2 144
Mathematics, General 2 3 4 2 72 2 88
Mechanical Engineering 8 4 8 3 53 1 79
Multi-/Interdisciplinary Studies, Other 2 2
Music Performance, General 3 1 2 3 26 1 39
Music, General 15 4 1 2 24 49
Nursing Science 4 6 48 2 60
Operations Management and Supervision 2 2 6 10 48 2 73
Philosophy 1 3 1 1 10 1 18
Physical Education Teaching and Coaching 2 2 5 3 71 2 88
Physical Therapy/Therapist 2 2
Physics, General 2 1 1 4
Political Science and Government, General 2 15 19 2 1 90 7 138
Psychology, General 1 31 37 5 1 171 7 260
Public Administration 1 4 1 24 31
Public Health, General 3 5 6 15
Reading Teacher Education 1 1 2 1 39 44
Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse 1 14 22 14 164 5 224
Russian Language and Literature
Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education
Sociology 37 20 4 69 1 131
Spanish Language and Literature 1 1 20 22 46
Special Education and Teaching, General 4 5 1 103 4 119
Speech Communication and Rhetoric 1 36 28 6 175 5 257
Sport and Fitness Administration/Management 2 1 2 12 18
Statistics, General 3 1 8 12
Taxation 1 3 20 24
Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Subject Areas, Other 1 1 3 5

Faculty Compensation / Salaries

Ranks 1115th for the average full-time faculty salary.
Effective as of 2014-09-20
Tenure system N/A
Average FT Salary $73,094 ($77,627 male / $65,213 female)
Number of FT Faculty 922 (507 male / 415 female)
Number of PT Faculty 1,168
FT Faculty Ratio 0.8 : 1
Total Benefits $70,314,165

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