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Colleges / Northwestern College

Northwestern College

Orange City, IA 4-Year Private
Acceptance Rate88%

Northwestern College Admissions

Northwestern College is moderately difficult to get into. The acceptance rate at Northwestern College is 88%. Out of 1,094 applications received in 2023, 958 students were offered admission.

If you are thinking about applying to Northwestern College, there is no application fee, which means it is free to apply.

Northwestern College Admissions Stats at a Glance

The following is an overiew of some of Northwestern College's admissions stats.

Northwestern College 2023 Admissions Statistics
Mean Unweighted GPA 3.6
Admitted Students in Top 10% of Graduating Class 21%
Mean SAT Score 1180
Admissions Test Policy Not optional
Applicants Who Submit SATs 10%
Applicants Who Submit ACTs 76%
Waitlist No

Northwestern College Application Deadlines

These are the application deadlines for Northwestern College.

Application Type Offered Application Deadline Notification Deadline
Early Decision I No
Early Decision II
Early Action No

Applying Early to Northwestern College?

Northwestern College does not offer early decision or early action.

➡️ See a list of some top colleges that accept significantly more applicants during early decision or early action than during regular admission.

More on Northwestern College Admissions

How To Get Into Northwestern College

Getting into Northwestern College is moderately difficult. Northwestern College evaluates applicants carefully based on multiple criteria to decide who to admit, and who to deny.

In 2022, Northwestern College accepted 88% of students, about 958 from the 1,094 applicants.

Schools that are moderately difficult to get into, like Northwestern College, accept fewer than 85% of all applicants. At least 75% of all admitted students have GPAs in the top 50% of their high school class and scored over 1010 on the SAT or over 18 on the ACT.

Transferring to Northwestern College

For more information on transferring to Northwestern College, contact the school directly.

For Students Waitlisted to Northwestern College

Northwestern College has not reported data for waitlisted and admitted students.

What Does Northwestern College Look For in an Applicant?

Colleges consider a range of factors when deciding who to admit for their next incoming class. Each college determines which factors are given the most weight in the admissions process. When creating your list of schools to apply to, you may want to consider your strengths and any possible weaknesses in your application, and apply to colleges that prioritize the areas where you're strong.

Admissions Factors at Northwestern College

What does Northwestern College consider during the admissions process? Take a look at the list below to see which factors are most important during the admissions process.

Admissions Factor Level
Class Rank Very Important
Standardized Test Scores Very Important
Academic GPA Very Important
Recommendation(s) Important
Rigor of Secondary School Record Important
Character/Personal Qualities Considered
Application Essay Considered
Extracurricular Activities Considered
Interview Considered
Religious Affiliation/Commitment Considered
Talent/Ability Considered

Make sure to check with Northwestern College for more information on admission factors.

Northwestern College Application Requirements

To apply to Northwestern College, all applicants must submit the following items. Make sure to check in with Northwestern College's admissions department to confirm all application materials and requirements.

Area Required Recommended Required for Some Details (If Any)
Letter(s) of Recommendation 1
Minimum High School GPA (On 4.0 Scale) 2.02.5
Written Essay or Personal Statement
Transcript of High School Record

GPA and Testing

What GPA Do I Need To Get Into Northwestern College?

Students admitted to Northwestern College have an average unweighted GPA of 3.6. Northwestern College considers weighted GPA scores from incomging students.

Out of all students that were admitted, 61% submitted a class rank. At Northwestern College 21% of students ranked in the top 10% of their graduating class in high school, 43% were in the top 25% and 78% were in the top 50%.

GPAs of Admitted Students

At Northwestern College, student GPAs fall in the following ranges.

GPA Percent of Students
4.0 GPA 15%
3.75 and 3.99 36%
3.50 and 3.74 21%
3.25 and 3.49 12%
3.00 and 3.24 7%
2.50 and 2.9 7%
2.00 and 2.49 2%

This chart depicts the percentage of all enrolled, degree-seeking, first-time, first year (freshmen) students who had high school grade point average within the given ranges.

Note: Some schools choose not release this information. If you have any questions regarding missing numbers, be sure to reach out to Northwestern College directly.

About GPAs

Your high school grade point average (GPA) is a number that highlights your high school academic performance. A weighted GPA or an unweighted GPA are the two possible GPA scores considered by colleges.

An unweighted GPA is an average of your scores from each class on a four-point scale. Unweighted GPAs range from 4.0 to under 1.0. A weighted GPA considers your average grade and the difficulty of your classes. A weighted GPA boosts your average by adding extra points for honors or Advanced Placement courses.

Standardized Test Scores

Northwestern College does not have a test optional admissions policy. Test optional schools allow students to choose if they want to submit ACT or SAT scores with their applications or not.

In 2022, 10% of Northwestern College's first-year students submitted their SAT scores with their application. 76% of admitted applicants sent ACT scores.

What is a Good SAT Score for Northwestern College?

To be competitive with other Northwestern College applicants, you should aim to score between 1020 and 1300 (or higher!) on the SAT. At Northwestern College 25% of admitted students scored higher than 1300 and 25% of scored lower than 1020, but the majority of students scored somewhere in between these two numbers.The mean composite SAT score for a Northwestern College student is 1180.

To be most competitive at Northwestern College, you should strive to earn between 20 and 25 on the ACT.

An ACT score of 25 means you fall in the 75th percentile for Northwestern College's admitted students. One out of every four students scored above a 25, and three out of four students scored lower than 25 on the ACT.

A 20 on the ACT is the 25th percentile for Northwestern College students. Only one out of every four students scored below 20.

More Information on Transferring to Northwestern College

Transfer applications are processed on a on a rolling basis as they are received.

Transfer students can enroll in Northwestern College during the following terms:

• Fall Term

• Winter Term

• Spring Term

• Winter Term

• Summer Term

Northwestern College Admissions FAQs

Can I defer my acceptance to Northwestern College?

✅ Yes, admitted students can defer their admission to Northwestern College.

Does Northwestern College accept transfer credits?

✅ Northwestern College accepts eligible transfer credits from accredited institutions. Northwestern College accepts:

• CLEP subject tests • DSST/DANTES

Does Northwestern College accept Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) credits?

✅ Northwestern College accepts International Baccalaureate credits (IB) credits.

Do I have to submit test scores to Northwestern College?

✅ Northwestern College is not test optional.

What is Northwestern College's acceptance rate?

✅ Northwestern College's acceptance rate is 88%.

What is the early decision acceptance rate at Northwestern College?

❌ Northwestern College does not offer early decision.

Want To Learn More About Northwestern College?

To learn more about Northwestern College, choose from the options below:


Student Life


Tuition & Aid

Join the conversation about about Northwestern College in the College Confidential forums

Explore other colleges in Iowa or use the college admissions predictor to calculate your chances of getting into some of the top colleges and universities in the U.S.

Northwestern College Admissions Requirements

Admission Difficulty

Somewhat Selective


How hard is it to get into Northwestern College? Northwestern College is a somewhat selective institution. The Northwestern College acceptance rate is 88%. This means that the institution accepts 87 out of every 100 applicants.


Northwestern College Application Deadline

First-Year Applications are Due

Continuous processing

Transfer Applications are Due

Continuous processing

The deadline for Fall first-year applications to Northwestern College is Continuous processing.

The deadline for Fall transfer applications to Northwestern College is Continuous processing.

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

Northwestern College SAT Scores


Composite SAT Range

1020 - 1300


Math SAT Range

Not available


Reading SAT Range

Not available

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by SAT Score

SAT Score

Estimated Chance

1300 and Above


1020 to 1300


1020 and Less


SAT Scores Needed to Get Accepted

The median SAT score for Northwestern College students is 1180. Applicants with SAT scores of 1300 and above have a good chance of being admitted to Northwestern College, while applicants with SAT scores between 1020 to 1300 have an average chance of admittance, and prospective students with an SAT score below 1020 have a low chance of being offered a spot at Northwestern College.

Northwestern College GPA

Avg. High School GPA (non-weighted)


GPA Needed to Get Accepted

At Northwestern College, the average unweighted high-school GPA for admitted students is 3.62. This is the average, which means that some applicants submit GPAs lower than this and some applicants submit GPAs above this level. If your GPA falls below the average, strong test scores or other qualifications may help you make you a more competitive applicant.

Data Source: IPEDs and Peterson's Databases © 2022 Peterson's LLC All rights reserved

Quick Facts

Total Enrollment


Campus Setting

Small Town

Acceptance Rate


Tuition and Fees

In State




Fall Freshmen
Application Deadline

Continuous processing
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