Dominican University opened its doors in 1848 as St. Clara College in Wisconsin. Less than 50 years after its foundation, it moved to Illinois and became Rosary College to better reflect its connection to Catholicism. Though it operated as a college for females for much of its history, it finally admitted male students in the 1970s as the number of students interested in attending a female only school dropped. While the university still retains a close relationship with the Catholic Church, it does not require that students attend church like other similar schools do, but it does require that students take one or more religious studies courses while enrolled.
As a private Catholic university, Dominican University prides itself on providing the best for students. The school only admits a small number of students every year to keep its professor to student ratio low. Less than 4,000 students now take classes through the school, and the school has less than 150 professors working full time to educate those students. While DU does not have a national ranking, it does have a strong reputation among those looking for a small and private school. Many of its students come from Illinois and surrounding states, but it also appeals to Catholic students across the country.
Dominican University Accreditation Details
Students often consider a number of factors when deciding where to attend college. They look at how much classes cost, the ratio of students to professors, the type of programs and classes offered, and the activities available on campus. Students should also look at whether the school has accreditation and the type of accreditation it has. Before a school can receive accreditation, it must go through several different stages, including meeting with the accrediting organization, providing the organization with supporting documentation, and compiling a panel to meet with representatives of the organization.
Dominican University has full accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, which allows the university to award students with different types of degrees after they meet the requirements for graduation. The school also has accreditation from several other organizations for specific programs that it offers, including:
Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics
Commission on Accreditation of the Council on Social Work Education
Committee on Accreditation of the American Library Association
Students who want to know more about the accreditation process or if the program they want to enroll in has accreditation can contact the school or department directly for more information.
Dominican University Application Requirements
Dominican University is selective regarding who it grants acceptance to each year. Students entering as a freshman must have a grade point average of 2.75 or higher and be within the top half of their graduating classes. They must also score 1500 or higher on the combined SAT or score 21 or higher on the ACT. DU also requires that all freshman have a high school diploma and show that they completed a minimum of 16 high school classes. Though the college does accept those with a GED, those students will still need to show that they completed the minimum number of high school credits. Graduate students will need to meet other requirements as designated by the graduate department.
Dominican makes it easy for students to apply for admission online. Each student must create an application that shows the grade point average he or she received in high school, courses the student took, and other activities the student participated in, and scores obtained on one of the standardized tests. The student can then send in a copy of his or her high school transcripts and other documents to verify all the information listed on the application. Students are also responsible for paying an application fee as well.
Tuition and Financial Aid
Dominican University estimates the cost of tuition for new students at just under $31,000 a year. This refers to the cost of tuition and any associated fees that students pay but does not include textbooks, room, a meal plan, and supplies. DU estimates that students will pay an additional $9,000 or more every year for room and board. This includes the cost of living in a shared dorm room with one other person and a basic meal plan. Buying a meal plan that comes with more or less meals each week or living in a private room can affect the price students pay. Part time students pay a set fee of $1,010 per credit hour for each course they take, and the school drops that price to $490 per credit hour during the summer session.
Though this cost can seem high, students should keep in mind that financial aid is available. They can find out which options they qualify for after completing and submitting the Free Application for Student Financial Aid. Those attending college part time qualify for private loans and may may qualify for some scholarships. Full time students may qualify for grants, loans, scholarships, and work study programs.
Online Degrees Available
Dominican University is home to five separate colleges or schools that offer different types of programs for students. The Brennnan School of Business offers an MBA or Master of Business Administration degree for students who already have an undergraduate degree. This program also allows students to select from different concentrations like finance and management to get a better understanding of those topics before they go to work in the field. The Master of Science in Special Education is just one of the programs available through the School of Education. It gives students hands on experience working with students who have special needs.
The School Library Media Program through the School of Library and Information Science provides students with the skills needed to work in school libraries. They learn how to weed collections, purchase new supplies, and assist students. The School of Social Work offers a Master of Social Work program that helps students get the licenses and certificates needed for working with children, the elderly, abuse victims, and others in need. Students may also take classes through the School of Continuing and Professional Studies to earn degrees in legal studies and other topics after taking a break from school. Dominican University offers programs and courses for students right out of high school or college and those who took years off from school.