Programs Offered at Vanderbilt University
Vanderbilt University appears in our ranking of 50 Great Affordable Colleges in the South.
Students at Vanderbilt University can enroll in bachelor’s or master’s degree programs, as well as several doctoral programs on topics that range from the arts to the sciences and a variety of multidisciplinary options. Some of the schools within Vanderbilt University include the School of Engineering, School of Nursing, and the Blair School of Music.
Other programs are housed within the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Medicine and Basic Sciences, the Law School, and the Owen Graduate School of Management. Popular majors at the university include those in economics, the social sciences, mathematics, and computer science. The freshmen retention rate for the university is an excellent 97 percent, and the student-to-faculty ratio is a low 7:1 with more than 65 percent of classes featuring fewer than 20 students.
Although Vanderbilt University doesn’t offer dual enrollment programs, entering first-year students who already have some college credits from dual enrollment opportunities at other campuses may apply to have their credits transferred toward their degree at Vanderbilt. There are several conditions that the university will use to determine whether the student’s program will accept the transfer credits.
Students who want to enroll at Vanderbilt University in an undergraduate program can choose from virtually any topic of study across science, art, math, and other areas. A sampling of undergraduate programs available include those in Asian studies, chemistry, French, physics, Latino and Latina studies, and political science.
Meanwhile, graduate students can enroll in a similar number of varied programs that include pursuits like chemistry, cognitive studies, applied clinical informatics, anthropology, environmental engineering, and deaf education. For doctoral degrees, students can choose from degrees in areas like civil engineering, chemistry, astrophysics, nursing practice, and pharmacology.
Students who want to take classes online from Vanderbilt University will start with an online application to one of the university’s schools that offers online degrees. For example, students interested in education degrees will enroll with Vanderbilt’s Peabody Online College of Education and Human Development. Available degrees include the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) Leadership and Learning in Organizations or the Master of Education in Human Development Counseling.
About Vanderbilt University
Vanderbilt University is located in Nashville, Tennessee and was established in 1873 through a grant from Gilded Age titan Cornelius Vanderbilt. He gave the new school a million dollars even though he’d never been to Tennessee at the time. The purpose of the university was to help the country recover from the devastation of the Civil War. Today, the university has around 13,000 students enrolled with approximately 6,200 of those students enrolled in graduate study.
The university’s official colors are gold and black, and the students play on teams nicknamed the Commodores in NCAA Division I games. The university’s official mascot is named Mr. Commodore. The university has graduated several distinguished alumni that include more than 40 current and former members of Congress, as well as more than a dozen governors and several people who have become billionaires. The school has also seen its alumni become Nobel Prize laureates and Vice Presidents of the United States.
Vanderbilt University Accreditation Details
Vanderbilt University receives its institutional accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, which allows the university to award college degrees. The university reaffirms its accreditation every decade and also submits interim reports twice a decade. The university will undergo accreditation again during the 2026 to 2027 school year. The university is also approved for operations by the Tennessee Higher Education Commission.
Many of the programs are also accredited by various agencies. Accreditations include approval from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association – Council on Academic Accreditation, which has accredited the program in audiology, as well as the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, which has accredited the professional programs in business. The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs has accredited the certificate program in cardiovascular perfusion, and many other programs have also been accredited.
Vanderbilt University Application Requirements
There are four ways to apply to Vanderbilt University as an undergraduate student. Application options include the Coalition Application, the QuestBridge Application, the Common Application, or the University College Application. The university doesn’t have a set of required courses that must be taken in high school but recommends that students enroll in the five core academic areas that include English, social science, a foreign language, lab science, and math.
Students who want to apply to the Graduate School at Vanderbilt University will need to submit official scores from the Graduate Record Exam (GRE), transcripts from all institutions attended, letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose. Students from other countries must submit scores from an English language proficiency exam. Graduate applicants will pay an application fee of $95 but may qualify for an application fee waiver.
Tuition and Financial Aid
Vanderbilt University is a private school and charges the same tuition rates for all students. The total cost for tuition at the university is $50,800 per year with other costs like a space in a residence hall, meals, books, supplies, and personal costs increasing the total cost of admission to $73,148. Some other fees students may need to pay include the First-Year Experience fee, a transcript fee, a laboratory fee, and a residential fee for students in certain residence halls.
Tuition for graduate students is $2,026 per credit hour, and students may also pay other fees like a medical insurance fee of $3,650, an activity fee of $500, and an audit fee of $10. All students will also pay a one-time fee of $100 for transcripts. Students in terminal master’s degree programs and Ph.D. programs may be eligible for assistantships, fellowships, and scholarships that are only available to students at the graduate level or above.
Students interested in receiving financial assistance for college tuition costs will work with the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships. The university awards more than $46 million in scholarships and aid to first-year undergraduate students, and more than 60 percent of the university’s students receive some type of need-based aid.
The university suggests it will meet 100 percent of a student’s financial need for tuition. Students may qualify for several scholarships like the Ingram Scholars Program, the Cornelius Vanderbilt Scholars Program, or the Chancellor’s Scholars Program. Around 250 students enrolled at Vanderbilt University each year will receive money from these programs.