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University of Northern Colorado

University of Northern Colorado Rating: 4.2/5 (19 votes)

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Located in Greely, Colorado, The University of Northern Colorado has a liberal arts core curriculum and offers a wide array of educational options for students. Opportunities include single courses, online programs, bachelor’s degees, master’s degrees, doctoral programs and numerous professional certificates. UNC has several satellite campuses in such places as Loveland, Denver and Colorado Springs.

Established in 1889 as the State Normal School of Colorado, the university originally offered training for teachers. The campus is divided into two primary areas. The Central Campus is home to residence halls that are designated a state historic district, as well as the business school, the performing and visual arts school, and the College of Natural and Health Sciences. This area of the campus has a more traditional, studious feel. The West Campus encompasses the rest of the schools of study as well as more residence halls and tends to be the social hub of the campus.


The University of Northern Colorado offers a wide array of educational opportunities for students at all levels. They have over one hundred undergraduate programs, nearly thirty master’s degree majors, almost twenty doctoral majors and more than fifty endorsement and certificate programs. Many of these programs offer opportunities for advanced research projects and UNC enhances the learning experience by incorporating hands-on training in the form of community service, internships and student teaching, clinical placement programs and mentoring. For students interested in studying abroad, the university offers hundreds of programs in more than fifty countries.

Students at the University of Northern Colorado study in one of six different colleges, including the Kenneth W. Monfort College of Business where they may obtain bachelor’s or master’s degrees in several different areas of business. This college has the prestigious claim of being the first and only business college to ever be awarded the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award from the Office of the President of the United States. The College of Natural and Health Sciences focuses on the human, natural, math and health sciences and offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs. For students wishing to pursue careers in teaching or psychology, the award-winning College of Education and Behavioral Studies offers several different undergraduate and graduate programs. Finally, the University of Northern Colorado has a liberal arts core curriculum that students will study in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

The University of Northern Colorado also provides numerous online classes and degrees. The program is fully accredited, just as if the classes were being taken on campus and are an easy way to obtain an education if full time courses on campus is too difficult. For more information about the online learning program, contact the university or visit the website.

Most Popular Fields of Study

Unique Programs

The University of Northern Colorado has several interesting programs designed to make the educational experience at its institution better academically, socially and athletically.

Outdoor Pursuits Program

For students interested in outdoor activities such as hiking, white water rafting, camping, skiing or rock climbing, the campus offers the Outdoor Pursuits Program. Students have access to free gear such as tents, backpacks, sleeping bags and snowboards. The program also provides students with the opportunity to participate in leadership experiences and educational workshops as well as trips and activities.

University 101

The University 101 program helps freshmen meet people with similar interests by pairing students in the same program together for two classes. The program is based on UNC’s rich reputation as a research university and the class pairings are advanced and extremely hands-on. The classes are challenging but take place in a supportive environment that helps the freshman adapt to that first year of college and become well adjusted members of the campus community. The classes consist of one liberal arts core course and one liberal arts course suggested for the major. Students earn five credits from the program and get an opportunity to greatly enrich their educational experience.

Campus Recreation Center

The Department of Campus Recreation offers scheduled and drop in recreational opportunities, sports and wellness programs in the Campus Recreation Center. The Center is nearly eighty thousand square feet and offers a fully equipped conditioning and strength training area, an indoor track, climbing wall, racquetball courts and two gyms featuring five basketball courts. The Center also has locker rooms, meeting spaces and offices. Students are able to use the entire facility free of charge and faculty may join for a nominal fee.

Blue Cruisers

In order to provide affordable and eco-friendly transportation to students, the University of Northern Colorado has purchased and customized a fleet of bicycles that are available to students free of charge. The bikes are painted in school colors complete with the mascot and come with a lock and helmet and an optional front basket. Students interested in the program simply need to go to the Campus Recreation office, present their campus ID, and pick up the bike. Bikes need to be returned at the end of a week for service and maintenance, but the student may choose to take another bike immediately, pending availability. There are also bike racks at several locations across campus that are equipped with tools and an air pump.


Undergraduate Admissions

Acceptance to the University of Northern Colorado does not guarantee admission to all majors. There are several programs, including business, nursing, teaching and music, that have additional requirements. Students should be aware of the requirements for the program to which they are applying in order to submit all documentation necessary to be considered for admission.

Students applying to University of Northern Colorado’s undergraduate programs will need to complete the online application and submit the application fee. For students that are financially needy or have exceptional grades and test scores, this fee may be waived. After submitting the application, students will be required to submit official high school transcripts and SAT or ACT scores. The test scores are not required if a student has been out of high school for more than five years. The university also has high school course requirements that applicants should be familiar with. Finally students may choose to submit a personal statement and letters of recommendation. This is not required, but is encouraged especially if a student has a low GPA or test scores.

Students who have completed more than twelve hours at another institute of higher education will need to complete the appropriate application and submit transcripts from all other schools attended.

The university also has some special admission programs for people that are veterans, high school students, or just simply want to take a few summer courses without enrolling full time. For more information about these programs, refer to UNC’s website or contact them for more information.

Graduate Admissions

Students wishing to apply to one of the University of Northern Colorado’s graduate programs will need to submit college transcripts and GRE scores. Students whose first language is not English may also be required to submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores. For students who need to increase English language skills, the university offers an Intensive English Program. Some graduate programs may also consider such things as work experience, communication skills, research interests, career focus, clarity of goals and basic math and analytical skills when determining acceptance to their program.

Every graduate program reserves the right to require additional testing or documentation, so students should research the program of choice to ensure that all documentation required for the application packet is complete.

Financial Aid

More than two-thirds of the students that attend the University of Northern Colorado receive some form of financial aid. The university offers aid in the form of need-based and merit-based scholarships, grants, loans and work programs. The first step to obtaining financial aid is completing the Free Application for Financial Aid (FAFSA) which is available online in January. Students should complete this form as soon as possible in order to be eligible for all available programs. Applicants should be aware that financial information for both the student and family will be required in order to complete the FAFSA, and should have this information readily available prior to starting the application.

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 3711th for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Colorado.


The UNC Bears are an NCAA Division I association that plays in the Big Sky Athletic Conference. Their colors are blue and gold and they offer nineteen varsity sports including men’s and women’s basketball, cross country, golf, indoor track, tennis and track and field. Men may also choose to participate in baseball or football while women have the additional choices of softball, volleyball or swimming and diving.

Athletics play a large role in campus life and students get free admission to all sporting events with an ID. The athletics association boasts numerous national championships, back-to-back football championships, several trips to the College World Series and over four hundred All-American athletes. Famous athletes that hail from UNC include:

  • Steve Antonopulos, head athletic trainer of the Denver Broncos
  • Aaron Smith, football player (defensive end) for the Pittsburgh Steelers
  • Reed Doughty, football player (safety) for the Washington Redskins

For students that would like to participate in sports but do not have the time to invest into varsity sports, or the sport that they choose is not be available at the varsity level, there are also a wide variety of club and intramural sports offered. Some examples are ultimate frisbee, racquetball, basketball, tennis, dodgeball and volleyball.


  • University of Northern Colorado. University of Colorado. 2011. Web. 9 May 2011.
  • University of Northern Colorado Athletics. University of Northern Colorado. 2011. Web. 9 May 2011.
  • “University of Northern Colorado.” The Princeton Review. The Princeton Review. 2011. Web. 9 May 2011.

Information Summary

Ranks 13th in Colorado and 1107th overall
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Campus Crime Statistics

Ranks 0th in Colorado and 298th overall on StateUniversity.com‘s Safe School Index
  Incidents per 100 Students
Aggravated assault 6 0.05
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter N/A N/A
Rape 2 0.02
Robbery 5 0.04
Arson 1 0.01
Burglary 6 0.05
Larceny N/A N/A
Vehicle theft N/A N/A
Arrest 121 0.93

Local Crime Statistics

  Incidents per 100 People
Aggravated assault 323 0.34
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter 1 0.00
Forcible Rape 38 0.04
Robbery 75 0.08
Arson N/A N/A
Burglary 593 0.63
Larceny 2,377 2.52
Vehicle theft 148 0.16

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics

Carnegie Foundation Classification

Doctoral/Research Universities
UndergraduateBalanced arts & sciences/professions, some 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 District804

Special Learning Opportunities

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

Student Tuition Costs and Fees

Ranks 1193rd for total cost of attendance
  In District In State Out of State
Effective as of 2014-09-19
FT Undergraduate Tuition $5,548 $5,548 $16,892
FT Undergraduate Required Fees $1,420 $1,420 $1,519
PT Undergraduate per Credit Hour $227 $227 $696
FT Graduate Tuition $8,735 $8,735 $17,379
FT Graduate Required Fees $1,179 $1,179 $1,179
PT Graduate per Credit Hour $403 $403 $943
Total Cost of Attendance — On-Campus $20,264 $20,264 $31,803
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus w/out Family $21,602 $21,602 $33,141
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus with Family $11,668 $11,668 $23,207

Student Tuition Cost History and Trends

Prior year cost comparison
  In District In State Out of State
Published Tuition & Fees $6,623 $6,837 $6,623 $6,837 $18,145 $18,361
  Cost (regardless of residency)
Effective as of 2014-09-19
Books & Supplies $1,325 $1,300
On-Campus – Room & Board $9,550 $10,044
On-Campus – Other Expenses $2,165 $2,012
Off-Campus w/out Family – Room & Board $9,550 $10,044
Off-Campus w/out Family – Other Expenses $2,689 $2,610
Off-Campus with Family – Room & Board $2,165 $2,610

Admission Details

Effective as of 2014-09-19
Application Fee RequiredN/A
Undergraduate Application Fee$45
Graduate Application Fee$50
First Professional Application FeeN/A
Applicants 7,602 (2,824 male / 4,778 female)
Admitted 5,289 (1,843 male / 3,446 female)
Admission rate 70%
First-time Enrollment 1,939 (694 male / 1,245 female)
FT Enrollment 1,925 (687 male / 1,238 female)
PT Enrollment 14 (7 male / 7 female)
Total Enrollment12,710

Admission Criteria

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

Admission Credits Accepted

Dual Credit
Life Experience
Advanced Placement (AP)

Athletics - Association Memberships

Sports / Athletic Conference Memberships NCAA
NCAA Football Conference Big Sky Conference
NCAA Basketball Conference Big Sky Conference
NCAA Baseball Conference Liberty League
NCAA Track & Field Conference Big Sky Conference

ACT Test Admission

863rd for 75pctl scores
Applicants submitting ACT results 91%
Verbal scores (25/75 %ile) 19 / 25
Math scores (25/75 %ile) 18 / 24
Cumulative scores (25/75 %ile) 20 / 24

SAT Test Admission

677th for 75pctl scores
Applicants submitting SAT results 13%
Verbal scores (25/75 %ile) 450 / 570
Math scores (25/75 %ile) 450 / 570
Cumulative scores (25/75 %ile) 900 / 1140

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 Capacity3,700
Meals per Week19
Room Fee$4,594
Board Fee$5,340

Student Completion / Graduation Demographics

Total 43 56 270 33 12 1,799 434 2,711
Accounting 1 1 11 2 16
Adult Development and Aging 2 5 7
African-American/Black Studies 1 1
Anthropology 4 1 19 3 28
Asian Studies/Civilization
Audiology/Audiologist and Speech-Language Pathology/Pathologist 3 2 1 33 3 43
Biology/Biological Sciences, General 1 2 2 33 8 47
Biomedical Sciences, General 1 1 5 7
Business Administration and Management, General 8 9 15 4 106 46 190
Chemistry, General 2 1 24 7 36
Counseling Psychology 1 5 1 42 4 53
Counselor Education/School Counseling and Guidance Services 1 1 16 18
Criminal Justice/Safety Studies 4 20 1 44 11 83
Dietetics/Dietitian 3 5 3 30 15 57
Drama and Dramatics/Theatre Arts, General 2 3 29 3 38
Dramatic/Theatre Arts and Stagecraft, Other 2 1 1 6 1 12
Economics, General 2 1 11 3 18
Education, General 2 9 2 141 7 165
Education, Other 7 2 10
Educational Leadership and Administration, General 1 1 26 6 34
Educational Psychology 2 1 11 14
Educational Statistics and Research Methods 1 1 1 3
Educational/Instructional Technology 2 2
Elementary Education and Teaching 1 1
English Language and Literature, General 8 1 50 17 76
Fine/Studio Arts, General 8 1 45 13 70
Foreign Languages and Literatures, General 5 8 3 16
Geography 1 13 3 17
Geology/Earth Science, General 3 25 6 34
Health Services/Allied Health/Health Sciences, General 1 1 1 35 12 50
Higher Education/Higher Education Administration 1 3 4
Hispanic-American, Puerto Rican, and Mexican-American/Chicano Studies 1 1
History, General 1 6 1 48 15 71
International/Global Studies 1 8 1 10
Journalism 1 1 5 35 7 52
Kinesiology and Exercise Science 6 2 15 2 1 126 26 183
Mathematics, General 6 1 32 7 46
Multi-/Interdisciplinary Studies, Other 7 52 1 2 182 56 308
Music Teacher Education 2 21 2 26
Music, General 6 4 2 42 2 58
Nutrition Sciences 4 2 1 12 3 25
Parks, Recreation and Leisure Facilities Management, General 1 1 15 11 28
Philosophy 6 2 8
Physical Education Teaching and Coaching
Physics, General 1 2 7 2 13
Political Science and Government, General 3 2 8 7 21
Psychology, General 7 14 95 22 141
Public Health Education and Promotion 1 1
Reading Teacher Education 1 13 1 15
Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing, Other 14 1 15
Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse 1 1 7 1 1 88 46 146
School Psychology 1 13 14
Sign Language Interpretation and Translation 1 3 4
Social Sciences, General 1 7 4 13
Sociology 1 2 10 1 31 10 57
Spanish Language and Literature 10 9 3 23
Special Education and Teaching, General 3 9 3 1 109 7 136
Speech Communication and Rhetoric 1 2 11 53 20 89
Speech-Language Pathology/Pathologist 1 1 1 39 4 47
Sustainability Studies 2 3
Vocational Rehabilitation Counseling/Counselor 2 4 7

Faculty Compensation / Salaries

Ranks 1559th for the average full-time faculty salary.
Effective as of 2014-09-20
Tenure system N/A
Average FT Salary $67,379 ($72,276 male / $55,313 female)
Number of FT Faculty 504 (254 male / 250 female)
Number of PT Faculty 764
FT Faculty Ratio 0.7 : 1
Total Benefits $12,669,276

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