Iowa State University

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College Consensus
Publisher Consensus
Student Consensus
Scores last updated on January 6, 2024
Percent Admitted
4-year Graduation Rate
Student-to-Faculty Ratio
Average Undergraduate Students Aid
In-State Tuition and Fees
Out-of-State Tuition and Fees
= Average
Public, 4-year or above
Carnegie Classification
Doctoral Universities: Very High Research Activity
Religious Affiliation
Not applicable

Iowa State University is a public, 4-year school located in Ames, IA just 30 miles north of Des Moines. The school was founded in 1858 as the Iowa Agricultural College and Model Farm which was a coeducational school and the nation’s first land-grant institution. In 1959 the school achieved university status and was renamed the Iowa State University of Science and Technology. The nearly 2000 acre campus features several buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places; of particular note is the Campanile – the large clock tower featured on the school logo. The campus also features Lake LaVerne which was a gift to the school in 1935. The University played a part in the Manhattan Project, which led to the development of the atomic bomb. Among many notable alumni are inventor George Washington Carver and Senator Tom Harkin.

Academic Programs

Iowa State University is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission and offers Bachelor’s degrees, post-baccalaureate Certificates, Master’s degrees, post-masters Certificates and Doctorates in over 100 majors. Noted for Art & Design, Music and Veterinary fields, the largest programs on campus are in Engineering and Business. The University is comprised of eight colleges: College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, College of Engineering, College of Business, College of Human Sciences, College of Design, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, Graduate College and College of Veterinary Medicine. Per the Mission Statement, “Iowa State’s focus has always been its students. The university emphasizes learning by doing. ISU students take advantage of many opportunities to engage in real-world class experiences and cutting-edge research, to study in other countries, and to test their leadership skills in 800-plus campus organizations… As a member of the Association of American Universities, and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, Iowa State is dedicated to conducting research and scholarship with local, national, and international impact.”

Student Life

There are over 30,000 undergraduate students enrolled in Iowa State University, many of whom live among the 19 residence halls separated into geographic areas; there is also a significant Greek presence on campus. The University sponsors over 800 clubs and student organizations, including club sports and intramurals. For the varsity athlete, the cardinal and gold Cyclones, led by Cy the Cyclone, field teams in 11 sports and participate in NCAA Division I competition. Students understand the stated Vision of the University: Iowa State University will lead the world in advancing the land-grant ideals of putting science, technology, and human creativity to work. Also, the overall Values of the school: Iowa State University is an institution that encourages the intellectual and personal growth of its students as scholars and citizens. As an educational institution, the university recognizes that the transmission of knowledge, the pursuit of truth, and the development of individuals require the free exchange of ideas, self-expression, and the challenging of beliefs and customs.

Ready to start your journey?

Ready to start your journey?