Requirements & Deadlines For First-Year Students

Admissions / First-Year Students / Requirements & Deadlines For First-Year Students
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First-year students applying to Rider should follow the application steps and deadlines below.

Steps to Apply


    The $50 application fee is non-refundable and may be paid online via credit card or by check.
    Students attending an on campus visit will receive a fee waiver. We also accept the NACAC or College Board Fee Waivers as well as Fee Waiver requests made by your school counselor.

    Submit official transcripts from your high school and for any college work you may have completed while you were in high school.
    If you earned a General Equivalency Diploma (GED), request that an official copy of your diploma and test scores be sent to Rider University’s Office of Admissions.
    International students should follow the special instructions for high school transcripts.

    This letter should come from a school counselor or an individual who can describe your academic potential and personal characteristics.
    Applicants to the Westminster College of the Arts must submit at least one recommendation from a teacher, instructor or coach in an arts-related field.
    Superscoring: Rider will use only your best scores from each section; for the SAT & ACT, this may be components from different testing dates. Have you already been accepted through our "Test Optional" program? If so, we strongly recommend that you send us your test scores. Your scores may be used for course placement, but will not affect your admission or scholarship.

    Rider does not require the optional essay/writing sections on the SAT or ACT.

    If you are not applying as a "Test Optional" applicant, submit scores for all tests taken:  
    • SAT I (Code 2758)
    • ACT (Code 2590)

    Now is your chance to express yourself – let us get to know the real you – we know you're more than a series of facts and figures! Choose one of the Common Application essay topics or write an essay on one of the topics below. 

    In at least 250 words, please answer one of the following questions:
    • Jump into the future, ten years from your Rider graduation. You have been selected to receive a local community award and will need to submit a biographical sketch. Highlight your personal and professional accomplishments since graduation. 
    • Describe a person or event that has influenced your life in a significant way and how you have grown as a result of this experience.
    • Create and answer your own college essay question. We are interested in your ability to organize your thoughts and express yourself clearly. Let us know why you feel this question should be included in the application.

    Westminster College of the Arts requires an audition as part of the application process for many of its majors. Program specific information and dates of campus auditions, scholarship competitions and regional auditions can be found in the auditions section. Students applying through Early Action for majors requiring an audition should plan to audition in December. Early Action is not available to Musical Theatre applicants.

    You can follow the status of your application and receipt of required credentials on your "Be-A-Bronc Applicant Dashboard".  After we receive your application, we will send you a link and your login credentials.

Application Deadlines

Rider practices rolling admissions. Once your application is complete, you will be notified of your decision. Applications completed after the stated deadlines will be considered on a space-available basis.

Fall 2020 Semester - September Start Deadline
Early Action (Non-Binding) November 15 Apply Early Action
All Musical Theatre Applicants* December 1
Scholarship Consideration** January 15 Apply today
FAFSA Priority Deadline February 15
Candidate's Reply Date May 1

*Students applying through Early Action for majors requiring an audition should plan to audition in December. The early action option is not available to Musical Theatre majors, however, Musical Theatre Applicants wishing to audition in December (including all who wish to be considered for the Trustee Scholarship) should apply by November 1. 

**To be considered for the maximum amount of scholarships for which you are eligible, your application must be complete, including all required credentials. If you are applying to a major that requires an audition, auditions scheduled for an audition day after January 15 will not disqualify you from maximum scholarship consideration.

View Scholarships and Financial Aid for Freshmen

Application Review

Rider University welcomes students with a variety of academic backgrounds. When reviewing an application for admission, the Undergraduate Admission Office takes a holistic approach by assessing your academic performance, letters of recommendation, and your admission essay, as well as your activities, talents and leadership. We encourage you to complete your application thoroughly and thoughtfully. Once the committee has reviewed the entirety of the student's academic experience, an admission decision will be made.

Admissions Mailing Address

Mail all application materials to:
Rider University
Office of Undergraduate Admission
2083 Lawrenceville Road
Lawrenceville, NJ, USA 08648-3099