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About Cardinals

North Central College is a private, religious school in a suburban setting in Naperville, Illinois. Cardinals was founded in 1861 and now enrolls around 2,832 students a year, including 2,475 undergrads. Cardinals provides housing for up to 1,437 students. The majority of students live on campus, and first year-students are required to live in campus housing.

There are many ways for students to get involved at Cardinals! Love music or performing? Join a campus band, sing in a chorus, or perform with one of Cardinals's theater groups.

Interested in journalism or communications? Cardinals students can write for the campus newspaper, host a radio show or be a producer for the student-run television channel.

Planning to play sports? Cardinals has many options for athletes. See them all and learn more about life at Cardinals on the Student Life page.

Learn more about life at Cardinals on the Student Life page.

Mark your calendar! The deadline to apply regular decision to Cardinals for Fall 2022 is April 15.Regular decision applicants for Fall 2022 should find out if they got admitted by June 1.

2021 Cardinals Facts At-A-Glance
Academic Calendar Quarter
Overall Acceptance Rate 53%
Average GPA 3.7
Applicants Submitting SAT scores 74%
Tuition $42,026

Is Cardinals a Good School?

Different people have different ideas about what makes a "good" school. Admissions difficulty and admitted student statistics can give you a sense of how competitive a university is, but they don't tell you how happy or successful students are. There are a few statistics that can give you a good idea of how satisfied students are and how well a school supports its students.

Let's take a closer look at all of these areas to get a clearer sense of what Cardinals offers and if it sounds like a good fit for you.

Cardinals Acceptance Rate 2021

Around 53% of applicants get into Cardinals each year. Out of 6,919 applications received in 2021, 3,687 students were offered admission.

Retention and Graduation Rates at Cardinals

Retention is the number of students that stay enrolled at a school over time. This is a way to get a sense of how satisfied students are with their school experience, and if they have the support necessary to succeed in college.

Out of all the first-year, full-time undergrads who start at Cardinals, around 78% are still enrolled their sophomore year. Around 66% of students who started at Cardinals earn their Bachelor's degrees within six years. Compare this to the average six-year graduation rate for colleges and universities in the U.S., which is around 61% for public schools and 67% for private.

Job Outlook Cardinals Graduates

Job placement rates after graduation and average starting salaries can all give important clues about the value of a degree from a specific school.

Tuition and Financial Aid at Cardinals

Cost is another important factor when choose a college. Some colleges may have high tuition, but do a better job at meeting students' financial need. Cardinals meets 80.1% of the demonstrated financial need for undergraduates. First-year students that attend Cardinals full-time are awarded $31,781 a year in financial aid, on average.

Graduates in the class of 2021 had an average of $34,534 in student loans per borrower. For context, compare this number with the average national debt, which is around $36,000 per borrower.

The 2022-2023 FAFSA Opened on October 1st, 2021

Some aid is available on a first-come, first-served basis, so fill out the FAFSA as soon as you can. Visit the FAFSA website to apply for student aid. Remember, the first F in FAFSA stands for FREE! You should never have to pay to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), so don't give your money (or info!) to any website that claim you do.

Learn more about Tuition and Financial Aid at Cardinals. Based on this information, how does Cardinals sound? Remember, a school that is perfect for one person may not be the right school for another! So ask yourself: Is Cardinals a good school for you?

If North Central College seems like a school you want to apply to, click the heart button to save it to your college list.

Still Doing Your Research?

Choose one of the options below to learn more about Cardinals:


Student Life


Tuition & Aid

Cardinals Community Forums

Then use the college admissions predictor to take a data science look at your chances of getting accepted at some of the top colleges and universities in the U.S.

Where is North Central College Located?

Cardinals is located in the suburban setting of Naperville, Illinois, less than an hour from Chicago.

If you want to see Cardinals for yourself, plan a visit. The best way to reach campus is to take Interstate 88 to Naperville, or book a flight to the nearest airport, O'Hare International.

You can also take a virtual campus tour to get a sense of what Cardinals and Naperville are like without leaving home.

Considering Colleges in Illinois?

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College Info

30 North Brainard Street, PO Box 3063 Naperville, IL 60566-7063

Campus Setting: Suburban

Cardinals Application Deadline

First-Year Applications are Due

Apr 15

Transfer Applications are Due

Not available

The deadline for Fall first-year applications to Cardinals is Apr 15.

Check the school website for more information about deadlines for specific programs or special admissions programs


Wondering what your chances are of getting into North Central College?

Complete your profile to get your personalized, AI-calculated prediction score.

Calculate Chances

North Central College is a member of the Coalition for College.

More than an application, the Coalition provides free tools and resources to help students through the college admissions process, beginning as early as 9th grade.

Learn More

Cardinals ACT Scores


ACT Range

20 - 27

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by ACT Score

ACT Score

Estimated Chance

27 and Above


20 to 27


20 and Less


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Cardinals SAT Scores


Composite SAT Range

1060 - 1220


Math SAT Range

21 - 28


Reading SAT Range

530 - 610

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Cardinals Tuition & Fees

Tuition & Fees


In State


Cost Breakdown
In State
State Tuition

Student Life

Wondering what life at Cardinals is like? There are approximately 2,832 students enrolled at Cardinals, including 2,475 undergraduate students and 357 graduate students. 98% percent of students attend school full-time, 91% percent are from IL and 9% percent of students are from other states.


Full Time


Part Time


In State



© 2021 College Confidential / Concentrical LLC, Data provided by IPEDs and Peterson's Databases, © 2020 Peterson's LLC.

Quick Facts

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Campus Setting


Acceptance Rate


Tuition and Fees

In State




Fall Freshmen
Application Deadline

Apr 15
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