Challenge Seekers Wanted


Minerva students are an international group with a global outlook. While their academic achievement is a demonstration of exceptional intelligence and ambition, they are energized by a desire to improve the human condition and collaborate in solving the most complex problems of our time. If this sounds right for you, you are probably right for Minerva.


Criteria & Student Attributes
Submissions for Regular Decision financial aid open January 1st, and must be submitted by March 1, 2016.
The Financial Aid Application Deadline for the Early Action admission cycle has passed. Please email for more information.

Qualities That Truly Matter

Academic performance is only part of the picture. Admissions offices often overlook the qualities most needed to succeed, both academically and personally. Minerva selects students based on promising characteristics like curiosity, determination, collaboration, and creativity — those which truly indicate your future potential.

While school transcripts are an important factor, we consider a composite of your abilities, your personal attributes, as well as your accomplishments outside of the classroom. These are frequently a stronger reflection of your ambition, your perseverance and your readiness to attend.

Our admissions team looks for academic excellence across disciplines, as well as focused areas of passion and individual achievement.

We do not consider any standardized test scores because they do not reflect a fair, unbiased view of your potential. Instead, we use the results of our unique set of assessments as a validated measure of your abilities. Since the Minerva assessments are not something you can study for, you can take them on your own schedule, as you move through the admissions process.

Another distinctive aspect of our process is the web-based video evaluation, which is designed to help us get to know you better and ensure your readiness to attend Minerva.
Admissions Process
The admissions process has five separate parts. After submitting the initial Application, you will gain access to a personalized Admissions Center where you can complete each part of the process at your convenience, in any order you choose.

If you have a disability that may affect your ability to complete the application online, please read this additional information. You can email with any questions.

Share basic information about yourself and your academic history. The Application is simple and free to submit.
~30 minutes

Academic performance at each school

Information on one personal accomplishment

Proprietary online tests created to gauge your ability to process information in various ways.
~45 minutes

Computer with a webcam and audio

Google Chrome or Firefox

Photo ID

Share details about the achievements you are most proud of, together with documentation and supporting evidence.
~60 minutes

Information on up to six personal accomplishments

Evidence of each accomplishment

Submit academic transcript(s) and a counselor report from your three most recent years of schooling.
~15 minutes

Transcript or grade reports from each of your academic institutions, preferably in English

Video Evaluation
Answer a series of questions about yourself, followed by a brief writing exercise, all while on camera.
~45 minutes

Computer with a webcam and audio

Google Chrome or Firefox

Photo ID

“I was getting disillusioned by a college application process that was putting me into boxes. Applying to Minerva was different. It was like they cared about the things that were important to me, not just grades and test scores.”
Zoey Haar, Minerva Student
New York, USA
Photo: Martin Klimek/Getty
Tuition & Fees
annual cost of tuition at Minerva

Access for Students of the World

The cost of education should be aligned with its benefits. Tuition rates at American universities continue to increase dramatically, while graduates too often find themselves unprepared for competitive careers and graduate programs. Minerva is committed to providing the best education available, at the lowest cost possible — preparing you for an interconnected and rapidly changing world.

At $10,000 per year, Minerva tuition is under a quarter that of other top universities, while housing, student services, and other expenses are comparable with those at most every public and private institution.

By lowering the cost of a four-year degree, we both minimize your financial burden and increase global access, broadening the diversity of our student body.

With outreach personnel in regions throughout the world, we actively recruit students from outside the United States and have attracted applicants from more than 160 different countries. While we recognize that Minerva is not right for everyone, we know there are brilliant students everywhere. Our goal is to ensure that all those who qualify are able to attend.

Estimated Annual Costs
Tuition & Fees
Tuition $10,000
Housing $11,000
Student Services $1,950
Other Expenses*
Estimated food budget $5,000
Books and supplies $500
Total Estimated Costs
*Not paid directly to Minerva

Required Technology

All technology support is included in the student services fee. However, you are required to supply your own MacBook Pro laptop to optimize your experience on the Active Learning Forum. We offer our students discounts on laptops, as well as most books and supplies through the Claremont Consortium bookstore.

Travel Costs

Though world travel is an important aspect of the full residential experience, the extent of individual travel plans and costs at the time of travel are outside of our control. Like other universities, the cost of travel between residence hall locations, or to and from home is your responsibility.

Health Insurance

All students are required to have health insurance, which is offered through Minerva at cost, as a condition of enrollment.

Financial Aid
Jan. 1, 2015
Financial Aid Application available for Regular Decision admissions cycle

Investing in Your Future

Every admitted student will be able to attend. Unlike most top universities, Minerva offers financial aid to all qualified students, irrespective of nationality.

Minerva believes that investing in your future is a shared responsibility. We play a significant supporting role, and request that you and your family help finance your education to an extent that is both equitable and manageable.

First, responsibility sits with Minerva itself to keep costs down. We ensure that the four year cost of our education is far lower than that of our peer institutions. Minerva is careful to ensure that every dollar spent is focused on the things that only we can provide to our students including: small classes of less than twenty students, an innovative curriculum, a roster of esteemed faculty, and an incredible student life experience. For example, instead of investing in building expensive campus facilities and amenities found at other universities, Minerva uses the vast resources of major world cities as its educational, extracurricular and cultural infrastructure.

Second, the student’s family has responsibility for paying for the university experience based on the amount that they are capable of paying.  We take a very principled approach to evaluating family contribution regardless of the student’s country of origin so every family is treated equitably.

Third, the students themselves can supplement their family contribution through Minerva arranged work opportunities as well as student loans that are designed to be paid back without creating a burden on graduating students.

Lastly, where there is still a gap, philanthropists who believe in the mission of Minerva have pooled together to offer need based scholarships to enable the highest potential students access to the world’s greatest undergraduate education.

Our shared goal is to help ensure students do not graduate with a heavy financial burden.


Take the First Step

No SATs or other standardized tests

No application fee

No national, ethnic, or gender quotas

Applying to Minerva is easy. Fill out the online form and share basic information about yourself and your academic history. Afterwards, complete supplementary material and assessments in the Admissions Center.

We are committed to treating every applicant equally, so all admissions decisions are based on merit alone. We do not require SATs or other standardized tests. At less than a quarter of the cost of other highly-selective institutions, a four-year degree from Minerva is accessible to top students around the world.

There is no fee to apply.



Live Info Sessions
Learn about our admissions process at an upcoming info session.




Minerva students gather outside the San Francisco residence hall.

Credit: Bob Miller
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Admissions Office
1145 Market St
San Francisco, CA
94103 USA
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