We consider each application with care.
When reading an application, we get to know the person behind the numbers. We take into consideration your academic achievements, extracurricular activities, personal qualities, and life experiences. Just as there is no typical Harvard student, there is no ideal Harvard applicant. We look forward to learning more about you.
Frequently asked questions about applying
Starting an Application
For all first-year and transfer applicants, your first step will be to fill out and submit an application. You can do so through the Common Application which opens on August 1 or the Coalition Application - Powered by Scoir, which opens on September 1.
We have no preference and each application is treated equally by the Admissions Committee.
All applicants—both international and U.S. candidates, first-year and transfer—must complete the following application components:
- Common Application or apply Coalition, Powered by Scoir
- Harvard College Questions for the Common Application, or Coalition Application Harvard supplement
- $85 fee (or request a fee waiver)
- SAT or ACT (with or without writing) - optional for 2022-2026 application cycles
- Optional: AP or other examination results
- For first-year:
- School Report (which includes a counselor letter) and high school transcript
- Teacher Report (2)
- Midyear School Report (after your first semester grades)
- Final School Report (for admitted students only)
- For transfer:
- College/Dean’s/Registrar’s report
- Official College Transcript
- College Instructor Recommendations (2)
- Official High School Transcript
Click below to learn more about each component.
Restrictive Early Action application deadline - learn more about Restrictive Early Action.
Regular Decision application deadline
Transfer application deadline
What We Look For
We seek students who will contribute to our community—and to society throughout their lives.
Academic achievement is important, but it's only part of what we consider when making decisions. We look for applicants who are curious, determined, and creative. We take into account special talents or successes that might not appear on a transcript. We appreciate unique perspectives formed by personal circumstances. These qualities help prepare students to make the most of their education.
Get step-by-step tips on filling out your college application. From the application fee waiver to the writing supplement, we've gathered some tips to help you complete your application.
U.S. Military Veterans
Individuals who have served in the U.S. military bring valuable perspectives to our community and we welcome applications from veterans for both first-year and transfer admission. If you are a veteran, please review the information on our U.S. Military Veterans page. There, you'll find details on whether to apply as a first-year or transfer student, financial aid, and making the transition to college life.
We welcome applications from all over the world. Our admissions and financial aid processes are the same for all applicants - regardless of nationality or citizenship.