Frequently Asked Questions

Residence Hall Terrace

Residence Hall Terrace

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 General Information

How many students attend The Cooper Union?
  • Approximately 900 students attend Cooper, which includes about 140 in The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture, 225 in the School of Art, and 440 in the Albert Nerken School of Engineering. We also have about 70 students in our graduate engineering program and about 10 in our graduate architecture program.
What is the size of a freshman class?
  • 213 students: 25 in the School of Architecture, 45 in the School of Art, and 143 in the School of Engineering
What is Cooper's acceptance rate?
  • Our acceptance rate for fall 2022 was 14%. This rate varies for each program: 4% architecture; 9% art; and 27% engineering. 
When can I visit The Cooper Union?
  • Plan your visit here. For group tours, here.
 Does Cooper Union have a virtual tour?
Does Cooper Union have a Residence Hall/Dorm?
  • Yes. The Cooper Union Residence Hall offers apartment-style housing. Each apartment is composed of a kitchen, bathroom, and bedrooms. A apartments have one single bedroom and one double bedroom; B apartments have two double bedrooms; C apartments have one single bedroom and two double bedrooms; and D apartments have two double bedrooms.
  • The res life team handles specific rooming requests on an individual basis: or 212-353-4099.
  • You can read more by visiting the Residence Hall/Dorm FAQ page.
Is there a particular percentage of a class that is admitted through Early Decision?
  • No. The percentage of students admitted through Early Decision varies each year. Early Decision is binding, meaning that if you receive an offer of admission, you will be expected to decline any other offers from other schools. 
What classes should I be taking in high school to better prepare myself for The Cooper Union?
  • All applicants should take a well-rounded high school program, preferably in advanced coursework (e.g. AP, IB, Honors level courses, etc.).
  • School of Engineering students should be prepared in calculus, chemistry and physics.
  • School of Architecture and School of Art applicants should take visual art classes (drawing, painting, design, sculpture, etc.).
  • School of Architecture applicants should take pre-calculus prior to entering The Cooper Union.
  • All students should take courses that provide a solid grounding in the liberal arts, which is a basis for the humanities and social science study at Cooper.
For which Advanced Placement (AP) examinations can I receive credit?
  • The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture may grant credit for mathematics courses. 

    The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS) rarely grants AP credit. However, a student who has attained a grade of 5 on an AP exam may petition the dean for permission to waive a core requirement and to substitute an appropriate elective course.

    The Albert Nerken School of Engineering views AP, IB and college courses as significant evidence of your academic ambition, accomplishment and preparation. However, we do not accept such courses for credit or advanced standing. The School of Engineering offers a math placement exam for Calculus I. Requirements for sitting for this exam stand include a score of 4 or 5 on the AP Calculus BC exam. Verified scores must be emailed to in advance of the test. 

    The School of Art does not award credit for AP or IB courses.

    The Cooper Union will consider granting credit for study in the Armed Forces, verified by The United States Armed Forces Institute (U.S.A.F.I).
Does The Cooper Union offer interviews to prospective applicants?
  • No. The Cooper Union does not conduct interviews as part of our admissions process.
Can I apply after three years of high school?
  • Yes. Candidates of exceptional merit may be considered for admission after completion of three years of high school.
  • Applicants must have excellent high school records and exceptional ability, recommendation from the high school principal, at least one recommendation from a teacher, and an interview will be required.
  • In accordance with the regulations of individual states, a student may or may not be eligible to receive an equivalency diploma after completion of a specific number of credits in appropriate subject areas at The Cooper Union. It is the responsibility of the applicant to investigate his or her state regulations in this regard.
How much does it cost to attend The Cooper Union?
  • Tuition for the 2023 –2024 academic year is $44,550 ($22,275 per semester).

    All incoming, undergraduate students receive a half-tuition scholarship. The value of this scholarship is $22,275 per year ($11,137.50 per semester). Additional financial aid may be available for eligible students to help cover tuition, housing, food, books, supplies, etc. The amount of additional aid will be based on a student’s demonstrated financial need. Students must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to be considered. The Cooper Union FAFSA code is 002710. In addition, The Cooper Union offers merit scholarships to a select number of students.

    For more information regarding financial aid at The Cooper Union, click here.

    Cooper students are responsible for living and miscellaneous expenses. Click here to access our budget guide, which provides a description and estimate of additional expenses.
What clubs and activities exist at The Cooper Union?
  • The Cooper Union offers a variety of clubs and organizations to its students, i.e., literary and performance groups, professional and honor societies, recreational sports, religious clubs, and always welcoming the creation of more. Go here to learn about our clubs.

    The Cooper Union also offers varsity sports in men’s basketball, women’s/men’s volleyball, and men's soccer. Go here to find out more about our athletics.
What is The Cooper Union Deferral Policy?
  • Admitted students may request to defer their offer of admission for one year. Each deferral request will be reviewed by the Office of Admissions and considered on a case-by-case basis. Learn more.
Is The Cooper Union requiring the COVID-19 vaccine?
  • No. Effective May 11, 2023, the COVID-19 vaccine and vaccine booster mandate are no longer in effect. Students, faculty, staff, and visitors are no longer required to provide proof of vaccination to enter our buildings. Visit our COVID-19 webpage to review the updated policy in full.

Applying to Cooper Union

When are applications due?
  • The deadlines for submitting your application for undergraduate admission:

    Early Decision
         - The Albert Nerken School of Engineering: November 1
         - The School of Art and The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture: December 1

    Regular Decision
         - All schools: January 5

Learn more about Cooper Union

Please join our mailing list to stay informed of important dates, event, and to learn more about our programs. 

For more information, please view or download our publications: ViewbookThe Irwin S. Chanin School of ArchitectureSchool of Art; Albert Nerken School of EngineeringAlbert Nerken School of Engineering Master of EngineeringFinancial AidInternational; and Fact Sheet. While you are at it, check out some Cooper student talent. Or preview Cooper by attending one of our high school programs.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.