Admission

International Student Guide

In the 2016-17 academic year, international students comprised 8 percent of our incoming class.

A valuable part of the wide spectrum of cultural and academic perspectives that shape the Reed community, international students currently hail from 44 different countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, China, India, Nepal, South Korea, Turkey, United Kingdom, and Zimbabwe.

Education at Reed is about becoming a better critical thinker. Most Reed courses are taught as conferences—small discussion groups of 10-to-15 students and a professor. As they sit around the conference table testing concepts and debating ideas, students challenge themselves and each other with new interpretations of traditional academic material. Labs, lectures, reading assignments, and writing assignments generate the discussions, the success of which is based on everyone's genuine excitement for learning.

In addition to in-depth exploration in a major area of study, students are required to take a broad range of courses from the great divisions of academic knowledge: natural science, mathematics, social science, literature, the arts, and humane studies. Reed’s curriculum is strong across the board, and it is as common for students to major in the sciences as it is for them to major in the humanities.

Faculty members at Reed are among the most qualified instructors and scholars in the nation, and their dedication to teaching does not end when class is over. Many students design faculty-supervised independent study projects or assist professors with scholarly research. Beyond these formal, academic interactions are numerous opportunities for students and professors to meet over lunch, at a local coffee shop, or on the softball field.

A Word about Rankings

Reed chooses to not provide data to the US News & World Report rankings each year because we believe that the one-size-fits-all methodology behind most college ranking systems does not capture the unique experience of a classroom, a community, or an institution. However, there are some other rankings that may give you a sense of our campus.

  • #3 Professors Get High Marks (Princeton Review 2016)
  • #3 Best Classroom Experience (Princeton Review 2016)
  • #3 Unique Traditions (Unigo 2013)
  • #1 Students Travel Farthest from Home (Niche Ink 2014)
  • #4 Graduates who Go on to Earn Doctorates in All Disciplines (National Science Foundation and Integrated Postsecondary Education Data)
  • Top 25 Amazing but overlooked colleges (Daily Beast 2013)

Resources

Reed students, who call themselves Reedies, have created over 80 clubs and organizations that are open to all students. These clubs reflect all manner of interests, from debate and environmental sustainability to bicycling and baking pies.

Reed also has programming geared specifically toward international students. Upon arrival to campus, international students participate in a pre-orientation program to assist with the transition from their home countries to Reed and to the United States. Over the course of the next four years, students receive support from the college through local host families, the international student services office, and a mentor program called InterConnect.

These services provide guidance with issues relating to visa paperwork, questions about the Reed curriculum, and cultural adjustment to the United States. On-campus housing is guaranteed for international students and all students at Reed have access to the health center.

A student-composed leadership body called the International Student Advisory Board (ISAB) serves as a channel between students and faculty, providing an open forum for discussion of issues pertaining to the international student population. ISAB also offers recreational opportunities!

Financial Aid

All financial aid at Reed is granted on the basis of demonstrated financial need. We offer no academic or athletic scholarships. Need is determined through an assessment of your family’s financial resources and ability to contribute toward the cost of your education.

Reed meets the full demonstrated need of all admitted students. Reed will not admit a student who demonstrates need without offering a financial aid award. All offers of financial assistance include grants, work opportunities, and loans. 

If you are requesting financial assistance

If you are a non–US citizen and plan to apply for financial aid from the college, you must complete the College Scholarship Service (CSS) PROFILE. For information about the CSS PROFILE, visit the College Board's website. Students who submit a letter of financial hardship from their school counselor to the financial aid office may also receive a waiver for the cost of the PROFILE. The PROFILE must be submitted by the same date as your application in order to be considered eligible for financial aid.

If you are a permanent resident of the United States, you must submit a photocopy of your Permanent Resident Card (I-551) with your application. Permanent residents who wish to apply for financial aid must follow the application process for domestic students, filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and CSS PROFILE. Detailed instructions and deadlines are available on Reed's financial aid website.

Costs for the 2016–17 school year

Tuition and fees (direct)  $51,850
Room and board (direct)  $13,150
Books and supplies (indirect) $1,950
  *Total 67,250

*A quick note: The total cost of attendance will also include transportation between your home country and the United States once a year, meaning that the total cost of attendance will be different from student to student.

Portland

Reed’s campus is located in a residential section of Portland, a mid-sized city of about 600,000 residents. Despite its metropolitan location, campus is home to over a hundred varieties of trees, a protected wildlife preserve, and a small, beautiful lake with connections to the Willamette River and the Pacific Ocean. Portland’s downtown, just 10 minutes from campus, is home to the world’s largest independent bookstore, as well as great vintage stores, movie houses, and art galleries. In addition to being one of the greenest cities in the United States, Portland is known for its progressive urban planning, its innovative music scene, weekend brunches, and delicious coffee.

Reed's campus is 30 minutes away from Portland International Airport, which is accessible by public transportation. 

Applying to Reed College

Reed College seeks students who are well prepared academically and who are serious about a broad-based education. Admission to Reed is competitive; it is based on a close examination and comparison of credentials from many highly qualified applicants. Intellectual curiosity, academic performance, and an understanding of Reed are among the criteria used to evaluate each applicant’s candidacy.

To apply for admission to Reed, students will need to complete either the Coalition Application or the Common Application and provide a Reed Supplemental Essay. All application materials can be accessed through Reed’s website, as well as through the Coalition Application or Common Application website.

For evaluating applications, the admission committee requires full secondary school transcripts (and college or university records, if any). Students studying under a system that requires examination (for example, the International Baccalaureate or the British System) are asked to submit exam results at the time of completion. Predicted results for exams that are in progress should be sent with the application. British System candidates are expected to sit for A-Levels. Students who successfully complete A-Level, International Baccalaureate, Abitur, or Lycée programs may be eligible for up to one year of advanced credit from Reed.

We require results from the SAT or ACT.

International applicants whose native language is not English are encouraged, but not required, to submit results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). The average TOEFL score for international students entering Reed is approximately 650 paper-based and 110 internet-based.

We require two teacher recommendations from two different academic disciplines. If the recommendations are not written in English, the inclusion of an accurate translation is expected.

Early Decision I application forms must be submitted by November 15. Early Decision II application forms must be submitted by December 20. Regular Decision applications must be submitted by January 1; decisions are mailed from the college in late March. International students applying for transfer admission must submit an application by March 1.

To expedite the receipt of materials from around the world, we welcome correspondence by fax or email.

Graduate and Professional Schools

Reed's focus on academics and research is invaluable in preparing students for continued study. Graduate and professional schools most frequently attended by Reed alumni include the following:

Doctoral study
UC Berkeley
University of Washington
University of Chicago
Stanford
University of Oregon
Harvard
Law
Lewis & Clark Law School
UC Berkeley
University of Oregon
University of Washington
New York University
Yale
Business
University of Chicago
Portland State University
University of Pennsylvania
Harvard
University of Washington
Columbia
Medicine
Oregon Health and Sciences University
University of Washington
Washington University (St. Louis)
Stanford
University of Southern California
Case Western Reserve

RANKED PERCENTAGE OF GRADUATES
WHO GO ON TO EARN A PHD

PHYSICAL
SCIENCES
LIFE
SCIENCES
SOCIAL
SCIENCES
ALL
DISCIPLINES
  • Caltech
  • Harvey Mudd
  • REED
  • MIT
  • New Mexico Institute of Mining & Tech
  • Carleton
  • Wabash
  • Rice
  • Univ of Chicago
  • Grinnell
  • Haverford
  • Swarthmore
  • Caltech
  • REED
  • Swarthmore
  • Carleton
  • Grinnell
  • Harvey Mudd
  • Univ of Chicago
  • Haverford
  • MIT
  • Earlham
  • Harvard
  • Cornell
  • Swarthmore
  • REED
  • Harvard
  • Grinnell
  • Univ of Chicago
  • Bryn Mawr
  • Thomas More College
  • Oberlin
  • Bard College at Simon's Rock
  • Wesleyan
  • Amherst
  • Pomona
  • Caltech
  • Harvey Mudd
  • Swarthmore
  • REED
  • Carleton
  • MIT
  • Grinnell
  • Princeton
  • Harvard
  • Oberlin

Notable Reed Alumni

Pamela Cox ’75, senior vice president for change management at the World Bank
Richard Danzig ’65, former US Secretary of the Navy
Arwen Isaac Dave ’89, design engineer for NASA’s International Space Station
Nancy Farmer ’63, Newberry and National Book Award–winning author
Janet Fitch ’78, New York Times best-selling author of White Oleander.
Steve Jobs ’76, founder of Apple Computer
Peter Norton ’65, creator of Norton Utilities
Eric Overmyer ’73, writer and producer of HBO’s The Wire and Tremé
Emilio Pucci MA ’37, legendary Italian fashion designer
Preetha Rajaraman ’94, epidemiologist with the National Cancer Institute
Elizabeth Robinson ’82, CFO for NASA
Larry Sanger ’91, cofounder of Wikipedia