Boise State University


Boise State University was originally founded by the Episcopal Church in 1932, when it was known as as Boise Junior College. Four-year college status was approved in 1965 and the school officially entered the state system of higher education in 1969 under the name Boise State College. The institution adopted its current name in 1974.

Boise State is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities and awards associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. Students can earn over 200 degrees in 190 fields of study. The university offers over 100 graduate programs.

The university’s goal is “to foster an intellectual atmosphere that produces educated, literate people—people knowledgeable of public affairs, committed to lifelong learning, and capable of creative problem-solving.”

The main Boise State campus is located on the south bank of the Boise River. The West campus, which existed in Nampa, Idaho, separated from the school and transitioned into a two-year community college in 2009. Three education centers are still located at Mountain Home Air Force Base, Gowen Field and in Twin Falls, Idaho.


Information Summary

Ranks 3rd in Idaho and 569th overall. See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list
Overall Score (about) 85.7
Total Cost On-Campus Attendance $23,076
Admission Success rate N/A
ACT / SAT 75%ile scores 26 / 1220
Student Ratio Students-to-Faculty 18 : 1
Retention (full-time / part-time) 79% / 45%
Enrollment Total (all students) 25,504


Boise State is comprised of seven colleges: Arts and Sciences, Business and Economics, Education, Engineering, Graduate Studies, Health Sciences, and Social Sciences and Public Affairs.

Bachelor’s degrees are awarded in a number of different disciplines in all colleges (except the College of Graduate Studies). Some of the fields of study represented include the arts and sciences, wildlife management, theatre arts, visual arts, exercise, science, education, engineering, radiology, nursing, communication, political science, manufacturing systems technology, semiconductor technology, and wildland fire management. Certificates and associate degrees are offered in many of the technology programs and in other fields such as legal assistance. The university also offers interdisciplinary minors in addiction studies, Canadian studies, and gender studies, and a certificate in dispute resolution. A minor to become a legal assistant is also available.

Additionally, the university offers over 70 different master’s degrees, five doctoral degrees, and various graduate certificates

Most Popular Fields of Study


Boise State University
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Unique Programs

The university is home to several special research, service, and development centers. These include diverse areas of interest such as as the Idaho Council on Economic Education, the Center for Idaho History and Politics, Dispute Resolution and Conflict Management, and the Raptor Research Center. While the centers provide classes and specializations that might be of interest to students, they are primarily geared toward research and informing the public about their particular areas of focus.

Boise State’s colleges and divisions offer several unique interdisciplinary minors that combine the curriculum of two or more fields to give students specialized areas of expertise. These include Addiction Studies, Canadian Studies, Dispute Resolution, Legal Assistance, and Gender Studies.


Boise State uses an admissions index to determine if students in particular classifications (high school graduates under the age of 21, for example) meet its admissions requirements. The admissions index is a complex matrix that analyzes applicants’ GPA in regards to their SAT or ACT scores. For example, an applicant classified as “Excellent for Admission” could have a GPA of only 2.25 but an SAT score of 1520 or an ACT score of 34. By the same token, a candidate classified as “Possible” may have a GPA of 3.00 but an SAT score of only 870 or an ACT score of only 18. The full matrix is available for viewing at the Boise State website.

Even students who do not meet the requirements put forth in the admissions index may still be admitted to Boise State under provisional status. This special arrangement requires that students earn 14 credits in specific courses over 3 semesters and earn a grade of “C” or better overall in order to continue their studies. The core courses include fundamental areas such as English and Mathematics.

Applications to undergraduate programs are accepted through the summer prior to the fall semester, with a non-refundable application fee. Applications can be submitted online. In addition to the online application and fee, students must provide transcripts and standardized test scores. Undergraduate students must have completed in high school eight semesters of English, six semesters of mathematics, six semesters of natural science, five semesters of social science, two semesters in humanities or foreign languages, and three semesters in other college preparatory courses.

Graduate students must provide the following for admissions to the graduate school: completed application, transcripts, exam scores, letters of recommendation, and any other supplemental materials required by the program to which one is applying. A non-refundable graduate school application fee is also required.

Financial Aid

The university requires that students who receive or are eligible to receive financial aid make satisfactory academic progress, file their FAFSA on time, demonstrate financial need, provide proof of a high school diploma or GED, not be default on prior loans, and register with Selective Service. Aid programs include grants, government loans (including the PLUS loan), alternative loans that may be provided through a private service, scholarships, and work-study programs located on campus.

Eligible students may receive financial aid as a combination of grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study programs.

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 4104th for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Idaho.


Boise State is the largest university in the state of Idaho. The campus is home to nearly 200 student organizations, modern residence halls and the $12 million Student Recreation Center, which includes a gymnasium with three full-size basketball courts, four racquetball courts, a student lounge, massage therapy facilities, a climbing gym, a free weight area, and a group exercise room.

Students have the opportunity to get involved in a number of organizations, including service-learning, the campus radio station, and various Greek organizations.

The Arbiter is the campus’ student-run newspaper and publishes submissions from student writers and editors.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics


Boise State University is an NCAA Division I school, with basketball, cross-country, football, golf, tennis, track & field, and wrestling for men and basketball, cross-country, golf, gymnastics, skiing, soccer, tennis, track & field, and volleyball for women. The team nickname is the Broncos. It is in the Western Athletic Conference for all sports except women’s gymnastics and wrestling, which are in the Western Gymnastics Conference and the Pacific-10 respectively.

The Boise State Broncos compete in the Western Athletic Conference, Division I-A of the NCAA. Intercollegiate sports include football, gymnastics, soccer, and men’s and women’s basketball, cross country, and golf. Women’s skiing is also offered.

The Broncos football team has enjoyed numerous conference championships over the years, including three undefeated regular football seasons. The team plays at Bronco Stadium, which is known for its bright blue playing surface and home to the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl,


Few trademarks are as recognizable or as proudly demonstrated as the blue astro turf of Bronco Stadium. Every televised game and following highlight makes the stadium undeniably recognizable to every Bronco fan across the country.

Local Community

Boise is rightly called the City of Trees for its urban parks and outstanding outdoor life. A river flows through the city, providing 25 miles of riverfront green space to play and relax in. Other outdoor attractions include the Morrison-Knudsen Nature Center and the World Center for Birds of Prey. There are a good deal of cultural attractions in Boise, including the Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial and the Idaho Black History Museum. City facilities accommodating athletes looking to play golf, tennis, or just take a swim.

Boise is also the capital Idaho as well as the largest city in the state. Some of the numerous arts and cultural programs available in the area include ballet, theatre, visual arts, museums of history, and outdoor recreational parks and facilities, including Bogus Basin Ski Resort.

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