The University of Illinois at Urbana goes by a number of different names, but most students refer to this public university as simply Illinois. Though the University of Illinois has a number of smaller campuses in the state, its main or flagship campus is the one in Urbana. Founded in 1867, its main founder went against the advice of the state legislature and opened a school that focused on the liberal arts. Many of the new colleges that popped up during this era emphasized the importance of scientific study and practical knowledge instead of the liberal arts. Its emphasis on liberal arts and the way it let students take courses outside their major led to the school growing at a faster than anticipated rate.
As one of the largest colleges in Illinois, this university has an enrollment of more than 47,000 students and receives more than 35,000 applications every year. It ranks within the top 100 colleges in America, according to lists produced by U.S. News and World Report, Forbes, ARWU and Washington Monthly. Several publications also ranked it within the top 50 to 100 schools in the entire world. Bill Gates drew attention to the school after giving a speech there in 2004. He declared to the large audience that a large number of engineering and computer science professionals working for Microsoft graduated from Illinois. While students take their classes seriously, they also know how to have fun. Kiplinger's Personal Finance and Playboy both called Illinois one of the nation's top party schools.
University of Illinois at Urbana Accreditation Details
Students interested in attending the University of Illinois at Urbana will discover that this university has both program and regional accreditation. Colleges with regional accreditation do a good job of preparing students for using their degrees to work in their chosen fields or using their degrees in graduate school. The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCACS) gave Illinois its regional accreditation. The United States Department of Education will only allow students at a regionally accredited school to get federal grants and other types of financial aid. You may find that the program you hope to study has independent accreditation as well. All dietetics internships that the university offers and its degree program in dietetics have accreditation from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Other accreditation that Illinois has comes from organizations like the Council on Rehabilitation Education, National Association of Schools of Art and Design, Planning Accreditation Board, American Bar Association and Council on Education for Public Health.
University of Illinois at Urbana Application Requirements
Though you can fill out the Illinois online application for graduate school anytime you would like, you should double check the requirements for graduate students. Illinois requires that all applicants have a bachelor's degree or will finish a degree program and obtain a bachelor's degree before they start at the university. You must also have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale within the last two years you spent in your degree program. As long as you meet those requirements and it is still before the deadline, you can use the online application. This gives you the chance to talk about your GPA, where you went to college, when you graduated or will graduate and what you want to study at Illinois.
The online application is not the only step in this process though. You must also make arrangements to send verifying information back to the university. Send the official score you earned on a standardized test like the GRE and a copy of your official college transcript that lists all your classes and your total GPA to the university. Some graduate programs have additional requirements in place such as needing a copy of your resume, requesting that you write a personal essay or requiring letters of recommendation.
Tuition and Fees
Before enrolling in graduate school, you will likely want to know how much it will cost. Illinois charges around $12,000 a year for students who live in the state and want to enter one of its graduate programs. Students from outside of Illinois will see their graduate tuition climb to around $26,000 a year. Some programs offered by the university cost significantly more, including programs in finance, business administration and veterinary medicine. Illinois also has its own law school, which charges tuition rates of $36,000 to more than $45,000 a year. Graduate students must also pay for their own expenses, including textbooks and room and board.
Illinois is one of several schools that offers a tuition waiver for students who are the children of veterans. If one or both of your parents or legal guardians were in the military, you may qualify for a waiver that covers the total cost of your tuition. Graduate students generally qualify for less financial aid than undergrads do, but you will likely receive some type of loan and grant. Online students who go to school full or part time can also look into private loans that they can take out in their own names or with cosigners. Those taking online classes will also want to look at the scholarships available for grad students.
Online Degrees Available
The University of Illinois at Urbana now offers more than 50 online graduate degree programs for students. One of those is the iMBA, which is an alternative to a traditional MBA program. It allows students to live wherever they want to live and to complete an MBA program without taking a single class on the Illinois campus. This is a 72 semester hour program that includes courses on financial management, digital marketing, managerial economics and entrepreneurship.
Students who want to work as teachers in schools may enjoy the Master of Education degree with a concentration in Diversity and Equity online. This is a shorter program of just 32 semester hours that lets students learn how to run their classes more effectively without taking time away from their teaching jobs. This program emphasizes the importance of working with students from diverse backgrounds. The University of Illinois at Urbana offers a number of other online graduate programs that let students earn an advanced degree in topics ranging from engineering and business to education and social work.