Indiana State University

Indiana State University Rating: 4.4/5 (54 votes)

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Indiana State University (ISU) is a public research university in Terre Haute, Indiana. Its 200-acre campus, which is comprised of over 60 buildings, is located near the downtown business district.

In addition to the Terre Haute campus, an outdoor teaching and learning area known as the field campus is located less than 20 miles away in the town of Brazil, Indiana.

ISU has been ranked as one of the best universities in the Midwest by several college rankings organizations, and some of its programs have received national recognition. Its business college is considered one of the best business schools in the country.


Founded in 1865 as Indiana State Normal School, an institution created to educate teachers, ISU has existed under various names. After its continued growth and expansion and the addition of other academic programs, the school was granted university status and received its current name in 1965, one hundred years after the Normal School’s inception.


The university is comprised of six colleges and departments:

  • College of Arts and Science
  • College of Business
  • College of Education
  • College of Graduate and Professional Studies
  • College of Nursing, Health, and Human Services
  • College of Technology

The university awards bachelor’s degrees, master’s degree’s, and doctoral degrees. Students may also pursue one of several pre-professional programs. Additionally, associate’s degrees are offered in criminology, liberal studies, speech-language pathology, and various technology fields. Students may choose from over 100 different majors. Popular fields of study include education, aviation, finance, business, music, nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy, technology, and more.

Indiana State advocates experiential learning, regardless of major, meaning that all students in all disciplines have the opportunity to actually practice their field of study rather than just read and hear about it. Popular majors and fields of study include elementary/early childhood education, criminology, communications, and systems & decision sciences. The faculty-to-student ratio is low at 1:17 and the average class size is 23.

Most Popular Fields of Study

Unique Programs

Some of the more unique majors offered at Indiana State include packaging technology, criminology, athletic training, human resource development, and construction technology. The Criminology program offers a choice of a 2-year or 4-year degree, and a graduate program. Areas of focus include corrections, law enforcement, security, and delinquency prevention. Internships are also available. The Department of Aerospace Technology prepares students for a career in aviation. The Department offers a Bachelor of Science in Professional Aviation Flight Technology, Aerospace Administration, and an Associate Degree in General Aviation Flight Technology.


Applicants for undergraduate admissions are expected to have graduated in the top 40 percent of their high school class, but students who do not meet that initial requirement may be evaluated separately and on an individual basis. Consideration is given to SAT or ACT test scores, as well as the student’s high school curriculum and grades earned in specific subjects.

The university offers the Academic Opportunity Program through the Student Academic Services Center for applicants who may not meet the admissions requirements cited above but still demonstrate some sort of potential. The Academic Services Center offers testing, programs for people with disabilities, academic advisement, and mentoring for at-risk students. There are also other programs available to incoming freshmen that make the transition to college life a little less confusing, including First-Year Seminars and Learning Communities that are tailored to address students’ particular academic interests.

Undergraduate applications are accepted through July 1 for the fall semester. In addition to the completed application form, students are required to submit an application fee along with official test scores and transcripts. Applications can be submitted online.

Prospective graduate students must provide the graduate school with a competed application and corresponding fee as well as official transcripts. Applicants to doctoral program must also a statement of intent, GRE scores, a vitae, and letters of recommendation. Specific graduate programs may also require other specific materials to apply, so students are advised to check with his or her department.

Financial Aid

Students may be eligible for financial aid to help pay for tuition, fees, textbooks, and other educational expenses. The first step students should take if they are interested in financial aid is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Financial aid may include grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study programs.

Each year Indiana State awards more than $2 million in merit-based scholarships, ranging from awards of $1,100 to full-tuition awards. The Financial Aid office also coordinates acquisition of student, parent, and private loans, as well as consolidation loans.

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 3226th for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Indiana.


Freshmen must reside in one of the residence halls on campus unless they live nearby with their parents, are married, or have a valid excuse that is approved by the residence life department. Students who have already lived in a residence hall for two years are exempt from this requirement.

Students are encouraged to participate in school activities outside the classroom. The university offers more than 125 student organizations and clubs, student government, residence hall groups, and media productions such as newspapers, radio, and magazines. Studies have shown that co-curricular involvement helps overall student success during college.

In addition to the numerous classroom, dormitory, and administration buildings, the university has a theater, a center for fine and performing arts, and various athletic facilities. The campus library offers electronic catalogs, interlibrary loans, and online databases in additional to physical books and documents stored on site. It is home to several special collections, including rare books, collections pertaining to Indiana, and other manuscripts and materials.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics


The Indiana State Sycamores are an NCAA Division I school. Teams compete in the Division I Missouri Valley Conference and the Missouri Valley Conference and FCS Missouri Valley Football Conference. Intercollegiate sports include baseball, football, softball, volleyball, and men’s and women’s basketball, track, and tennis. There is also a cheerleading squad.

The university’s athletic facilities include Hulman Center for basketball, Indiana State University Arena for volleyball, the Duane Klueh Tennis Complex, and the Eleanor Forsythe St. John Softball Complex.

ISU prides itself on the quality of its student athletes, many of whom have been recognized with the Missouri Valley Conference Academic Excellence Award for highest GPA. Various school teams have been ranked nationally for academic success.

School colors are royal blue and white, and a furry blue and white white creature known as Sycamore Sam is the current mascot.


Indiana State has had the same school colors—blue and white—since 1899. The University’s traditional symbols are the book and the torch, and are celebrated in a traditional ceremony that confirms seniors’ desire to become active alumni.

Each year on Donaghy Day, named after a respected alum, students gather to plant trees and help beautify the ISU campus.

The Tricycle Derby, in which students race on adult-size tricycles, was first held in the early 1960s. Each Spring since 1970, students ride two-seater tandem bicycles to compete in Tandem, a bike race started and organized by students.

Local Community

The town of Terre Haute is a located in West-Central Indiana on the banks of the Wabash River. Attractions include the Children’s Science and Technology Museum, Dobbs Park Nature Center, Hook Observatory, Native American Museum, and an array of historical museums.There are several parks, public golf courses, and a nature center.

Terre Haute is a major source of manufacturing, employment, service, and shopping for the western area of Indiana.


ISU is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Individual programs and departments are also accredited by appropriate accrediting bodies.

Information Summary

Ranks 36th in Indiana and 1277th overall
See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list

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Campus Crime Statistics

Ranks 0th in Indiana and 515th overall on StateUniversity.com‘s Safe School Index
  Incidents per 100 Students
Aggravated assault 1 0.01
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter N/A N/A
Rape 2 0.02
Robbery 2 0.02
Arson N/A N/A
Burglary 30 0.26
Larceny N/A N/A
Vehicle theft 2 0.02
Arrest 55 0.48

Local Crime Statistics

  Incidents per 100 People
Aggravated assault 40 0.07
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter 4 0.01
Forcible Rape 17 0.03
Robbery 91 0.15
Arson N/A N/A
Burglary 934 1.53
Larceny 2,725 4.46
Vehicle theft 283 0.46

Carnegie Foundation Classification

Doctoral/Research Universities
UndergraduateProfessions plus arts & sciences, some graduate coexistence
GraduateDoctoral, professional dominant
Undergraduate PopulationFull-time four-year, inclusive
EnrollmentHigh undergraduate
Size & SettingMedium four-year, primarily residential

General Characteristics

Title IV EligibilityParticipates in Title IV federal financial aid programs
Highest offeringDoctoral degree
Calendar SystemSemester
Years of college work requiredN/A
Variable Tuition
Religious AffiliationN/A
Congressional District1808

Special Learning Opportunities

Distance LearningN/A
ROTC — Army / Navy / Air Force  —   /   / 
Study Abroad
Weekend College
Teacher Certification

Student Tuition Costs and Fees

Ranks 1301st for total cost of attendance
  In District In State Out of State
Effective as of 2014-09-19
FT Undergraduate Tuition $8,056 $8,056 $17,792
FT Undergraduate Required Fees $200 $200 $200
PT Undergraduate per Credit Hour $292 $292 $630
FT Graduate Tuition $6,714 $6,714 $13,194
FT Graduate Required Fees $200 $200 $200
PT Graduate per Credit Hour $373 $373 $733
Total Cost of Attendance — On-Campus $20,619 $20,619 $30,355
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus w/out Family $20,619 $20,619 $30,355
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus with Family $11,888 $11,888 $21,624

Student Tuition Cost History and Trends

Prior year cost comparison
  In District In State Out of State
Published Tuition & Fees $7,982 $8,098 $7,982 $8,098 $17,206 $17,644
  Cost (regardless of residency)
Effective as of 2014-09-19
Books & Supplies $1,170(N/C)
On-Campus – Room & Board $8,500 $8,772
On-Campus – Other Expenses $2,186(N/C)
Off-Campus w/out Family – Room & Board $8,500 $8,772
Off-Campus w/out Family – Other Expenses $2,186(N/C)
Off-Campus with Family – Room & Board $2,312(N/C)

Admission Details

Effective as of 2014-09-19
Application Fee RequiredN/A
Undergraduate Application Fee$25
Graduate Application Fee$35
First Professional Application FeeN/A
Applicants 11,019 (4,722 male / 6,297 female)
Admitted 9,152 (3,738 male / 5,414 female)
Admission rate 83%
First-time Enrollment 2,661 (1,116 male / 1,545 female)
FT Enrollment 2,654 (1,110 male / 1,544 female)
PT Enrollment 7 (6 male / 1 female)
Total Enrollment12,448

Admission Criteria

 = Required,   = Recommended,   = Neither required nor recommended
Open Admissions
Secondary School GPA / Rank / Record  /   / 
College Prep. Completion
Formal competency demo
Admission test scores
Other testsN/A

Admission Credits Accepted

Dual Credit
Life Experience
Advanced Placement (AP)

Athletics - Association Memberships

Sports / Athletic Conference Memberships NCAA
NCAA Football Conference Gateway Football Conference
NCAA Basketball Conference Missouri Valley Conference
NCAA Baseball Conference Missouri Valley Conference
NCAA Track & Field Conference Missouri Valley Conference

ACT Test Admission

1120th for 75pctl scores
Applicants submitting ACT results 41%
Verbal scores (25/75 %ile) 15 / 21
Math scores (25/75 %ile) 16 / 22
Cumulative scores (25/75 %ile) 16 / 22

SAT Test Admission

1145th for 75pctl scores
Applicants submitting SAT results 74%
Verbal scores (25/75 %ile) 400 / 510
Math scores (25/75 %ile) 400 / 510
Cumulative scores (25/75 %ile) 800 / 1020

Student Services

Remedial Services
Academic / Career Counseling
PT Cost-defraying Employment
Career Placement
On-Campus Day Care
Library Facility

Student Living

First-time Room / Board Required
Dorm Capacity3,698
Meals per Week14
Room Fee$5,071
Board Fee$3,429

Faculty Compensation / Salaries

Ranks 1242nd for the average full-time faculty salary.
Effective as of 2014-09-20
Tenure system N/A
Average FT Salary $71,434 ($76,497 male / $61,591 female)
Number of FT Faculty 470 (252 male / 218 female)
Number of PT Faculty 680
FT Faculty Ratio 0.7 : 1
Total Benefits $16,430,442

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210 N 7th St
Terre Haute, IN 47809
p. 812-237-6311
w. www.indstate.edu

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