Request a fee waiver
Northwestern is committed to creating and supporting a diverse and inclusive campus community of students from every financial background.
That’s why we want to make sure our $75 application fee does not pose a barrier for any student who wishes to apply. If paying the application fee would cause a hardship for you and your family, please request a fee waiver. Requesting a fee waiver will NOT disadvantage your application in any way.
Read on to learn A) whether you might qualify for a fee waiver, and B) if you do qualify, how to apply using a fee waiver.
Who qualifies for a fee waiver
Application fee waivers are available for students who meet at least one of the indicators of financial need listed on the Common Application or the Coalition Application, or identify with any one of the following categories:
• Students receiving free and reduced lunch
• First-generation college students
• Students affiliated with a Community Based Organization such as QuestBridge, A Better Chance, Ron Brown Scholars, Strive for College (I’m First), Davis United World College Scholars, and many other national, international and local organizations
• Students who reside in Chicago or Evanston
• Students whose circumstances do not include any of the above, but for whom the application fee nevertheless poses a financial hardship
Ways to apply using a fee waiver
A) Indicate your fee waiver request directly through the Common Application or the Coalition Application.
In the “Profile” section of the Common Application you will be asked if you believe that you qualify for a fee waiver. If you answer “Yes,” you will be asked to select applicable qualification criteria. Choose the correct criteria from the drop-down menu, and proceed with your application submission.
In the “Profile” section of the Coalition Application you will be asked if you intend to apply for a fee waiver and to indicate applicable qualification criteria. Choose the correct criteria from the drop-down menu, and proceed with your application submission.
B) Indicate your fee waiver request via the Northwestern-specific section of the Common Application or Coalition Application.
If you do not qualify for a fee waiver directly through the Common Application or Coalition Application, you may still be eligible for a Northwestern-specific fee waiver.
The Northwestern-specific questions in the Common Application and the Coalition Application will ask you if you intend to apply using a school-specific fee waiver and to indicate qualification criteria. Choose the correct criteria from the drop-down menu, and proceed with your application submission.
C) Write to us with your fee-waiver request.
If none of the drop-down criteria on the Common Application, Coalition Application or Northwestern-specific application questions apply to you, but the application cost nevertheless presents a financial hardship for your family, you may still request a fee waiver. Just follow these simple steps:
1. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your request that we waive the application fee, and be sure to include the following information:
• Your name as it appears on the application
• Your application ID number (Common Application or Coalition Application)
• Your date of birth
• Your e-mail as listed on the application
2. When filling out your application, under the Northwestern-specific question, “Do you intend to use one of these school-specific fee waivers?” choose the drop-down response, “Yes, I have submitted a fee-waiver request to Northwestern at email@example.com.”
Once again, if you are considering Northwestern for college, do not let our application fee prevent you from applying. For that matter, do not let the cost of Northwestern deter you, either—we meet 100% of every student’s demonstrated need through one of the nation’s largest financial aid programs. You can read more about our financial aid here.
And if you have additional questions about the fee waiver process, please feel free to contact us.Back to top