A liberal arts education at Bowdoin isn’t about being small and safe.

It’s about having the support to take surprising risks. Students undertake this journey with professors who are scholars and artists of distinction who actively shape their fields. From their first-year seminar through their senior year, students are immersed in subjects with teachers who illuminate learning with passion for their disciplines. Faculty and students work together in small classes, labs, performance halls, and conduct real-world research in the field. Bowdoin is a community of diverse backgrounds, beliefs, and experiences. We are interested in students who respect and welcome the challenges associated with such diversity. 


The Bowdoin curriculum offers a realization of the Offer of the College for the twenty-first century. The College requires students to seek breadth and depth in their education. This style of education encourages principled and thoughtful engagement with the world around us, both during and after your four years here. Bowdoin students go on to be leaders in all walks of life.

The Common Good

Since its opening in 1802, Bowdoin has understood the responsibility to direct higher education toward the common good. The college’s first president, Joseph McKeen, emphasized that Bowdoin students have a particular obligation to exert their talents for the greater benefit of society. In the 21st century, that obligation is stronger than ever. Bowdoin challenges students to consider the implications of a shared natural world and human heritage through community engagement on local, national, and global levels.

Bowdoin at a Glance

Bowdoin College is a highly selective liberal arts college on the coast of Maine. We are need-blind in the admissions process and meet full demonstrated financial need of admitted students with no-loan financial aid awards.  

Student Background for the Enrolling Class of 2022*

  • 513 entering first-years

  • 48% men, 52% women 

  • 67% from outside of New England 
  • 35% students of color  
  • 10% from outside the US
  • 10% Maine residents
  • 14% first generation to attend college
  • 12 states with ten or more students: CA, CT, FL, IL, MA, MD, ME, NH, NJ, NY, PA, VA  
*Data accurate as of 7/9/2018

Contact Us

Admissions Website
(207) 725-3100
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Deadline Information

Early Decision I
Application Due Date: November 15
Admission Decision By: Mid December

Early Decision II
Application Due Date: January 1
Admission Decision By: Mid February

Regular Decision
Application Due Date: January 1
Admission Decision By: Early April
Student Reply Date: May 1

Required Application Materials

Bowdoin accepts the Coalition Application, the Common Application, and/or the QuestBridge Application. All applications are treated equally, regardless of source. 

In addition to the application, all students are required to submit:

  • $65 Application Fee or Fee Waiver
  • Bowdoin Supplemental Questions
  • One Counselor Recommendation
  • Two Teacher Evaluations
  • Secondary School Report
  • Secondary School Transcript
  • Mid-Year Transcript

Optional application materials include:

Bowdoin does not require most applicants to submit SAT or ACT scores for the purposes of admission. The College has been test optional since 1969. This policy allows applicants to decide for themselves whether or not their test results accurately reflect their academic ability and potential.

If you are either a student applying for financial aid, or a first generation college student (neither parent graduated from a four-year college), you automatically qualify for a Bowdoin College Fee Waiver.

Complete List of Application Requirements and Deadlines

Student Aid

Bowdoin is committed to affordability. We are need-blind in the admissions process and meet 100% of demonstrated financial need. There are no loans in Bowdoin's student aid packages. Nearly half of enrolled students receive grant assistance from Bowdoin, and the average total grant is approximately $40,000. At Bowdoin, a family's ability to pay is not a barrier to admission. We can ensure that nothing stands between you and success as a college student - we seek excellence of all types and believe in equal opportunity regardless of finances.

  • Quick Cost Calculator
  • Net Price Estimator
  • 51 percent of the Class of 2021 received a need-based aid award
  • Total Cost of Attendance - $63,500
  • Average Bowdoin Grant - $42,165
  • Loan Amount in a Bowdoin Aid Package - $0 (No, that's not a typo!)