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Emerson College

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Emerson College Overview

Located in Boston, Massachusetts, Emerson College is a private not-for-profit institution. The location of Emerson is great for students who prefer living in an urban area.

What Is Emerson College Known For?

920 Undergraduate Awards
$59,558 Avg Cost After Aid
41% Acceptance Rate
  • The 3% student loan default rate at Emerson is better than the national rate of 10.1%. That's a good sign that you may be able to pay off student loans easier than your peers at other schools can.
  • The master's degree is the highest award offered at Emerson.
  • In 2017-2018, 41% of the faculty were full-time.
  • Students who graduate from Emerson with a bachelor's degree make about $46,600 a year. That's 14% more than those who graduate from other schools.
  • The average Emerson student graduates in 4.1 years. That's better than the national average of 4.4 years.

Best Schools

Emerson College Rankings

Emerson landed the #205 spot in our 2022 ranking of best colleges. We analyzed 2,587 colleges and universities across the nation to determine this ranking. This puts it in the top 10% of all schools in the nation.

These rankings may look different from those published by other outlets, because we use an outcomes-based approach rather than a subjective one. We get our data from a number of places, including the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and the College Scorecard. For more information, check out our rankings and methodology page.

Emerson has been awarded the following overall awards by our latest rankings.

Rank Ranking Name Share
#168 Best Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It

Program Level Awards

These are highlights of some of the most noteworthy awards granted to specific programs at Emerson.

Rank Ranking Name Share
#2 Most Popular Film, Video & Photographic Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#2 Best Publishing Master’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#10 Most Popular Drama & Theater Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#19 Most Popular Visual & Performing Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#22 Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#22 Most Popular Communication & Journalism Master’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#26 Best Communication Sciences Master’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#41 Best Drama & Theater Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#60 Best Visual & Performing Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It
#132 Best Health Professions Bachelor’s Degree Schools Tweet It - Post It

Awards From Around the Web

The following table lists some notable awards Emerson has earned from around the web.

Rank Ranking Name Source
#2 Best Musical Theater Schools College Factual
#21 Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools College Factual
#37 Best Drama & Theater Arts Schools College Factual
#50 Best Visual & Performing Arts Schools College Factual
#80 Best Healthcare Schools Healthcare Degree Search
#85 Best Health Professions Schools College Factual

Where Is Emerson College?


Contact details for Emerson are given below.

Contact Details
Address: 120 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116-4624
Phone: 617-824-8500

How Do I Get Into Emerson?

You can apply to Emerson online at:

Admission Requirements for Emerson

Submission Required?
High School GPA recommended
High School Rank recommended
High School Transcript required
College Prep Program required
Recommendations required
SAT or ACT Scores considered but not required
TOEFL required

How Hard Is It To Get Into Emerson?

41% Acceptance Rate
69% Of Accepted Are Women
64% Submit SAT Scores
Emerson has a fairly low acceptance rate of 41%, which makes it more selective than most schools. Take time to make sure you submit all the requested materials and you prepare the application in full. You don't want to get denied right off the bat due to an incomplete application!

Approximately 31% of accepted students are men and 69% are women. The acceptance rate for men is 42%, and the acceptance rate for women is 41%.

Average Test Scores

About 64% of students accepted to Emerson submitted their SAT scores. When looking at the 25th through the 75th percentile, SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing scores ranged between 610 and 690. Math scores were between 580 and 690.

SAT Reading and Writing Scores for Emerson College  ( 610 to 690 )

SAT Math Scores for Emerson College  ( 580 to 690 )
Emerson received ACT scores from 22% of accepted students. When looking at the 25th through the 75th percentile, ACT English scores ranged between 29 and 35. Math scores were between 24 and 28. Composite scores were between 27 and 31.

ACT English Scores for Emerson College  ( 29 to 35 )
ACT Math Scores for Emerson College  ( 24 to 28 )
ACT Composite Scores for Emerson College  ( 27 to 31 )

Can I Afford Emerson College?

$59,558 Net Price
49% Take Out Loans
2.5% Loan Default Rate
The overall average net price of Emerson is $59,558. The affordability of the school largely depends on your financial need since net price varies by income group.

The net price is calculated by adding tuition, room, board and other costs and subtracting financial aid.

Student Loan Debt

It's not uncommon for college students to take out loans to pay for school. In fact, almost 66% of students nationwide depend at least partially on loans. At Emerson, approximately 49% of students took out student loans averaging $13,791 a year. That adds up to $55,164 over four years for those students.

The student loan default rate at Emerson is 2.5%. This is significantly lower than the national default rate of 10.1%, which is a good sign that you'll be able to pay back your student loans.

Emerson College Undergraduate Student Diversity

3,626 Full-Time Undergraduates
63% Women
26% Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
There are 3,708 undergraduate students at Emerson, with 3,626 being full-time and 82 being part-time.


There are also 1,407 graduate students at the school.

Gender Diversity

Of the 3,626 full-time undergraduates at Emerson, 37% are male and 63% are female.


Racial-Ethnic Diversity

The racial-ethnic breakdown of Emerson College students is as follows.

Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 186
Black or African American 147
Hispanic or Latino 454
White 2,126
International Students 480
Other Races/Ethnicities 233

Geographic Diversity

Massachusetts students aren't the only ones who study at Emerson College. At this time, 41 states are represented by the student population at the school.

Over 70 countries are represented at Emerson. The most popular countries sending students to the school are China, Taiwan, and India.

Online Learning at Emerson College

780 Took All Classes Online
2,242 Took At Least One Class Online
746.9% Avg Growth Over 4 Years
In 2019-2020, 2,242 students took at least one online class at the school.

The following chart shows how the online learning population at Emerson has changed over the last few years.


This school is the 47th most popular in Massachusetts for online learning according to the online graduations recorded by the Department of Education for the academic year 2019-2020.

Online Affordability Rankings of Emerson

The following table shows how Emerson is ranked for affordability for both in-state and out-of-state students among colleges and universities that are not mostly online.

Major Tuition for In-State Students Tuition for Out-of-State Students
Radio, Television & Digital Communication #16 #16
Journalism #27 #27
Communication Sciences #40 #40
Writing Studies #67 #67

Online Growth Rankings of Emerson

The average growth rate over the last four years of online students at Emerson College was 746.9%. This is the #117 largest growth rate of all schools that are only partially online. This refers to all students at Emerson regardless of major.

The following table shows the 1-year growth rate of Emerson majors that offer at least one online course. This table only includes majors with positive growth.

Major 1-Year Growth Rate
Communication & Journalism 6%

The table below shows how the average growth rate over 4 years at Emerson ranks compared to all other partially online schools that offer a specific major. Note that the majors may or may not be offered online at Emerson.

Major Growth Rate Rank
Radio, Television & Digital Communication #7
Communication & Journalism #13

When we speak of partially online, we are referring to schools whose online population is less than 50% of its total student body. Mostly online refers to those with online populations greater than or equal to 50%.

Emerson College Undergraduate Concentrations

The table below shows the number of awards for each concentration.

Major Bachelor’s Master’s TOTAL
Film, Video & Photographic Arts 422 0 422
Drama & Theater Arts 119 19 138
Writing Studies 97 34 131
Marketing 64 52 116
Journalism 78 13 91
Communication Sciences 12 43 55
Communication & Media Studies 36 18 54
Public Relations & Advertising 28 23 51
Publishing 0 44 44
Teacher Education Subject Specific 11 33 44
General Business/Commerce 33 0 33
Other Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies 17 0 17
Radio, Television & Digital Communication 2 8 10
Business/Corporate Communications 0 1 1
Music 1 0 1
Graphic Communications 0 0 0
TOTAL 920 288 1,208


*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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