Stanford University

Stanford University logo

Stanford University - An Overview

Stanford University is a world-renowned private research institution located in California. Founded in 1885, it boasts academic excellence across various disciplines, offering a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs. The university's commitment to innovation and research has led to groundbreaking discoveries and technological advancements in numerous fields. Situated in the heart of Silicon Valley, Stanford plays a vital role in fostering collaboration between academia and industry. Its sprawling and picturesque campus provides a vibrant learning environment, attracting students and scholars from all over the globe. With a rich history and a reputation for excellence, Stanford University remains a leading force in shaping the future of education and advancing knowledge worldwide.

Stanford University Ranking

U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges 2022: Stanford University is ranked #3 out of 443 National Universities

Stanford University achieved #1 in Reuters Most Innovative Universities.

Schools Under Stanford University

Stanford University includes many reputable schools offering diverse areas of study to students. Some of the schools under Stanford University include:

  • School of Humanities and Sciences: This is the largest school at Stanford, offering programs in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and interdisciplinary fields.
  • School of Engineering: Known for its excellence in engineering and technology-related disciplines, this school offers programs in various engineering disciplines and computer science.
  • Graduate School of Business: This renowned business school offers MBA, MSx (Master of Science in Management for mid-career professionals), and PhD programs.
  • School of Law: The law school offers Juris Doctor (JD) degree programs, as well as advanced degrees for law professionals.
  • School of Medicine: Stanford's medical school offers MD (Doctor of Medicine) programs, as well as graduate programs in biomedical sciences and other health-related disciplines.
  • Graduate School of Education: This school focuses on programs related to education, teaching, and educational research.
  • School of Sustainability: Offering programs in earth sciences, energy resources, and environmental studies.

Some Notable faculty who had taught at Stanford University

Stanford University has a long history of attracting renowned scholars, researchers, and intellectuals. Here are a few notable faculty members who have taught at Stanford University:

  • Albert Bandura: A prominent psychologist known for his influential work on social learning theory and self-efficacy.
  • Condoleezza Rice: Former U.S. Secretary of State and political science professor at Stanford's Graduate School of Business.
  • Andrew Ng: An influential figure in the field of artificial intelligence and machine learning, co-founder of Coursera, and former director of the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Lab.
  • Stephen Schneider: A renowned climatologist who was heavily involved in climate change research and policy advocacy.
  • Jennifer Doudna: A biochemist and molecular biologist known for her groundbreaking work on CRISPR gene-editing technology.
  • Salman Rushdie: An acclaimed author and novelist who served as a Professor in the Humanities at Stanford.
  • John Taylor: An economist known for his work in monetary policy and the development of the Taylor Rule.
  • Philip Zimbardo: A psychologist famous for the Stanford prison experiment and his contributions to social psychology.
  • Terry Winograd: A computer scientist and pioneer in human-computer interaction, natural language processing, and artificial intelligence.
  • Michael Levitt: A Nobel laureate in Chemistry for his contributions to the development of multiscale models for complex chemical systems.

Alumni of Stanford University

Stanford University has a vast and distinguished alumni network that includes numerous influential and accomplished individuals across various fields. Many Stanford alumni have made significant contributions to their professions and have had a profound impact on society. Some notable Stanford University alumni include:

  • Larry Page and Sergey Brin: Co-founders of Google, now Alphabet Inc., the world's most widely used search engine.
  • Elon Musk: Founder and CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, Neuralink, and co-founder of several other technology companies.
  • Susan Wojcicki: CEO of YouTube, and former senior vice president of advertising & commerce at Google.
  • Reed Hastings: Co-founder and CEO of Netflix, the leading online streaming platform.
  • John F. Kennedy: The 35th President of the United States.
  • Sandra Day O'Connor: The first woman to serve as a United States Supreme Court Justice.
  • Condoleezza Rice: Former U.S. Secretary of State and National Security Advisor.
  • Peter Thiel: Co-founder of PayPal, technology entrepreneur, and venture capitalist.
  • Phil Knight: Co-founder and Chairman Emeritus of Nike Inc.
  • Jennifer Egan: Pulitzer Prize-winning author.
  • Reese Witherspoon: Acclaimed actress and producer.
  • Mary Barra: CEO of General Motors, the first woman to lead a major automaker.

Acceptance Rate at Stanford University

Stanford University's admissions have grown notably competitive over time, with acceptance rates steadily declining. In the 2020-2021 academic year, the institution admitted just 4.3% of its 47,500 applicants. Over the past decade, the average acceptance rate hovered around 4.69%, plunging to 3.68% in 2023, emphasizing Stanford's increasing exclusivity and the mounting difficulty of securing admission.

The fluctuating acceptance rates annually highlight the intense competition for a place at Stanford, exemplified by a steady decrease from 5.69% in 2013-2014 to 3.68% in 2022-2023. Despite a slight uptick to 3.91% for the Class of 2027, with 53,733 applicants, up from the previous year's record low, and 47,498 applicants for the Class of 2024, resulting in a 4.3% acceptance rate, Stanford's stringent selectivity remains a hallmark of its globally renowned stature.

Students enrollment data for 2023-24 admissions:

  • 7,841 undergraduate students enrolled (50% men, 50% women)
  • 85% 5-year Graduation Rate

Acceptance rate by School

  • 28% Humanities & Sciences
  • 21% Engineering
  • 2% Doerr School of Sustainability
  • 49% Undeclared

Stanford University's graduate programs exhibit diversity, with unique acceptance rates across departments and schools, often differing from the university-wide rate. These discrepancies stem from various factors such as application volume, available positions, and distinct assessment criteria employed by each department.

In determining acceptance rates for doctoral programs, Stanford calculates by dividing the number of admission offers by total applications received, excluding current students advancing to doctoral programs without reapplying. The data primarily covers research doctoral programs like PhD, JSD in Law, and DMA in Musical Arts, but excludes professional degrees such as MD and JD. As of Fall 2023, Stanford boasted 9,688 matriculated graduate students across its seven schools, representing a diverse community of academic and professional master's students, as well as doctoral candidates across disciplines. The School of Engineering hosts the largest portion of graduate students, followed by the Schools of Humanities and Sciences and Medicine. Geographically, the student body is diverse, including a substantial number of international students, alongside those from California and across the U.S.

Graduate Students enrollment data for 2023-24 admissions:

  • 9,688 graduate students enrolled (54% men, 46% women)

Graduate degrees awarded for:

  • 411 Master’s Professional (MBA)
  • 2,103 Master’s Academic
  • 270 Doctoral Professional (JD, MD)
  • 799 Doctoral Academic (PhD, DMA, JSD)

Graduates Acceptance rate by School

  • 37% Engineering
  • 24% Humanities & Sciences
  • 3% Education 4% Sustainability
  • 7% Law
  • 11% Business
  • 14% Medicine

Stanford University, with its low acceptance rate is even more selective than MIT, Caltech, and Yale and is quite similar to Harvard, Columbia, and Princeton. Although Stanford does have a low acceptance rate, this does not mean it is impossible to be admitted to the institution. Stanford emphasizes academic preparation as a vital part of their selection process. Stanford wants students that are thoughtful, highly engaged, and likely to make an impact at their institution.

Composition of Undergraduate Students

5.19% Acceptance Rate
45227 Students Applied
2349 Students got Accepted

An acceptance rate of 5.19% makes it relatively tough to get admission.

Composition of Graduate Students

9587 Students Enrolled (On-campus & Online)
0 Students enrolled exclusively in distance education
936 Students enrolled in at least one distance education course
125 Students enrolled in top 8 Masters degree program
104 Total Graduate Programs Specialization
What is the admission policy at Stanford University?

Stanford University has an open admission policy. It will accept any student who applies.


Stanford University has been ranked 5


Acceptance Rate: 5.19%


Tuition for Graduate Programs: $55,011

Under Graduate Program Tuition: $56,169

Financial Aid

Average Amount of Financial Aid Awarded: $53,346

Average Amount of Institutional Aid Awarded: $51,725

Stanford University most popular Master's Degree programs with respect to student count are

  • Law : 182
  • Civil Engineering : 177
  • Mechanical Engineering : 163
  • Electrical and Electronics Engineering : 142
  • Medicine : 92

Stanford University most popular under graduate programs with respect to student count are

  • Cognitive Science : 103
  • Econometrics and Quantitative Economics : 89
  • Biology and Biological Sciences : 63
  • Political Science and Government : 53
  • Mechanical Engineering : 52