Tufts University

4.3 of 5 stars Average Student Rating (of 140 Student Reviews)

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4.5 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

With the exception of a few intro-level courses, classes are all small enough that the professor gets to know you. And you'll never have TAs doing the bulk of the teaching like you get at a lot of schools. Professors are very personable and accessible. There are no "core classes", but you do have to take a certain number of courses in different general categories, which is a nice way to ensure that students get a well-rounded education while allowing students to take classes they're genuinely interested in.


Quality of Life

Most students really love to be here. Tufts has a great sense of community, since its small enough that events can unite the whole campus, and students feel as though they have things in common just by being students here, but never so small that it feels claustrophobic or cliquish.


Admissions

They have optional essays which encourage students to show their creativity, which I think is a nice way to get a broader picture of a student, but lots of people get in without doing them too.


Graduation Year

2011


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4.3 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Admissions

Unique essays, no interview, early decision available


Graduation Year

2011


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4.7 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Admissions

Normal admissions process, except Tufts includes some quirkier essay questions designed to give you more of a voice on your application.


Level

2


Graduation Year

2013


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4.3 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

You have distribution and foundation requirements, and then about 10-12 classes for your major. There's a heavy language requirement, but it can be replaced with culture classes to an extent- I've loved my experience with the foreign language dept though and wish I could have taken more classes. Class sizes are only large in introductory classes and otherwise can range from 10-40 depending on the subject. It's pretty competitive, but not to a detrimental extent- students collaborate all the time with work. There is a fair bit of work but none of it has really been busy work so far.


Quality of Life

I've so far been pretty happy with the housing and the people who've been my neighbors. The libraries- Tisch and Fletcher- are great. The facilities are great but not as large as you'll find in other universities, but that's because Tufts isn't really a large school. The student body is really friendly and quirky, the neighborhood has a lot to offer since there's easy access to Boston. Contrary to certain rankings, Tufts is extremely safe, and I've never felt threatened. The campus is easy to navigate- the hill really isn't a big deal at all!


Admissions

About 3 short essays or so with one optional, in addition to common app. There was early decision, ed2, and regular (I applied regular). Tufts' had some of the best/most relatable questions in comparison to other schools.


Level

2


Graduation Year

2014


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4.7 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

Class size is generally small, with the exception of some Intro courses, which have I'd say a maximum of 150 students. All Tufts students are required to take 6 semesters of a language, and if you're an International Relations major, then you must take 8 semesters of a language to insure that you are proficient in something other than English. Grades ARE NOT inflated. Curves are practically never given. Tufts also makes it very easy for their students to study abroad. For example, even though I'm double majoring, I'll be able to go abroad for an entire year. It is a VERY STRESSFUL school. A lot of homework, but it's usually so interesting that it makes it easier to do.


Admissions

Unique application essays, optional interview which can make you or break you, ED I and II available. Tufts gave me an amazing financial aid package the first year! and continued to do so. My parents would have never been able to afford this school. In fact, my parents' combined income is about 65,000 a year, and Tufts is 57,000, not counting expenses.


Level

3


Graduation Year

2013


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4.3 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

There are lots of core requirements at Tufts, which as a student has helped me to explore areas I wouldn't have otherwise. The major degree requirements are not too strict, and there is certainly room to double major or minor. There is a lot of encouragement to study abroad while at Tufts.


Quality of Life

Cost of living is a little pricey, but not too bad. The campus housing is good quality for the most part. I was please with library and dining facilities, and have felt generally safe on the Tufts campus.


Admissions

The Tufts optional essays are rather unique and require a certain amount of creativity. Otherwise, the application is pretty standard. My interview with an alumnus was helpful in learning more about the school.


Level

4


Graduation Year

2011


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4.5 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

There are a lot of distributional requirements. They are not as strict as core requirements, since they are based on area of study instead of type of class. These requirements include a six semester language requirement (which one can pass out of with enough language experience) too. Tufts also emphasizes giving students the opportunity to study abroad, and wants them to. Unfortunately, it is still hard for students in the engineering school to go abroad, though some people are able to manage it.


Quality of Life

The housing facilities are not all great, but some are really nice. There's a lot of off campus housing, which I personally really enjoy too. The cost of living for off campus is high compared to the surrounding area of Medford/Somerville, but is not that much higher than other colleges I've heard about. The dining halls are fantastic - they have good options for everyone, and the quality is high for dining halls.


Admissions

The Tufts application is unique - it's supplemental essay portion contains more questions than most applications. It changes every year, and usually includes questions that go outside the normal type of questions - some examples include a prompt called "gorilla vs. guerilla" (400 words or less), the ability to write a short story, or even a supplemental video essay.


Level

3


Graduation Year

2012


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4.7 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

Tufts requires its Liberal Arts students to complete 10 distribution credits (2 each in natural sciences, mathematical sciences, social sciences, humanities and the arts); 2 writing courses; 1 world civilization credit; 6 foreign language courses. Students have significant choice in which classes to take to fulfill these requirements, and many can double-count for a major or other requirements. Each major requires approximately 10-13 courses. Professors are extremely accessible and put their undergraduate students first. Research opportunities abound for Tufts undergrads, especially through programs like Summer Scholars. Average class size is 20 students, but many seminars are offered each semester for fewer than 12 students in each section. Study abroad is a popular choice at Tufts. It runs 10 programs in 8 different countries and has a list of more than 250 pre-approved study abroad options run by other institutions.


Quality of Life

The housing is well-maintained and spacious. Most students choose to live off-campus in their junior/senior years -- our relationships with Medford and Somerville residents have improved significantly over time. It is a safe neighborhood. The dining halls serve consistently excellent and healthy choices. The libraries on campus are wonderful resources, as is Tufts' membership in the Boston Library Consortium. Overall, students are EXTREMELY HAPPY to be Tufts students.


Admissions

Tufts prides itself on using a holistic application process. Although it accepts the Common App, the supplement is unique from year to year, asking prospective students questions like "What makes you tick?" or "If "curiosity killed the cat," why do we celebrate leaders like Ghandi and others who defy that maxim?" These questions require specific kinds of students to answer them and may turn others away (perhaps a reason why despite our high number of applicants we don't receive more). Interviews are not required, but are recommended should enough alumni be located in your area to conduct them. There are two rounds of Early Decision. The admissions team at Tufts strives to get to know the applicant on paper and through YouTube videos. They do an incredible job of recognizing the values of different types of learners and thinkers and consistently build an interesting class on the Hill.


Graduation Year

2011


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4.5 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

It's kind of a pain to get all the distribution requirements out of the way, but I was able to get out of about half of them with A.P. credits so that was really useful, although I'm not sure how much longer they're going to continue with that policy. It worked out nicely, though, to get all of my distribution requirements out of the way freshman and sophomore years and it allowed me to experiment with really interesting classes I wouldn't have taken otherwise. That being said, I am still quite happy I can now focus solely on the classes I'll be taking for my majors. There are a lot of research opportunities, and not just in the sciences as you might expect. I have a friend who is an international relations major, and he did research in Bangladesh over winter break our freshman year (he had been at school for 1 semester and still had an amazing research opportunity.) Not gonna lie, the workload seems to get heavier with time and I pulled more all-nighters this last semester than I thought possible. That being said, a lot of those all-nighters were because I spent time trying to balance an on-campus job and a social life with my school-work, but I think that fun-work balance is going to be a challenge wherever you go. And as far as study abroad, I think 40-60% of the junior class goes abroad every year. Tufts has some awesome programs, and you can do non-Tufts programs as well. Just be forewarned that the study abroad office tends to make a lot of things way more difficult than they have to be; they aren't very good about communicating and tend to leave things for the last minute.


Quality of Life

The dorms on campus aren't great, but I've found it's more about the people you live with than the building you're living in. Living on campus is probably more expensive than living off campus, but you're required to live on campus your first two years so you don't really have a choice. I think the most expensive part about it is probably the meal plan, but the food at Tufts is awesome as far as dining hall food goes. The library is one of my favorite places on campus to do work. It could be a little bigger - it tends to get really crowded around midterms and finals - but it is a really wonderful place. We get crime reports from our campus police somewhat frequently, because the surrounding areas of Medford and Somerville aren't necessarily the safest, but I've always felt really safe on campus. We have an open campus, but I've walked back from the library at 3 a.m. by myself (I'm a female) and I've felt totally safe. Overall, I'm very happy living on campus and I'm sad that next year (my Junior year) I'm going to live off campus. I mean, I found a great group of people to live with but I am just going to miss being on campus.


Admissions

At this point, I think Tufts is pretty well-known for its unique option to include a YouTube video as part of your application. They also have quite a few essays - I think it's 3 or 4 - in addition to the common application essays, but they're pretty good questions and interesting to answer. My interview was pretty easy too.


Level

3


Graduation Year

2013


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4.5 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

We have a distribution requirement that students have to take two classes in five different topics (mathematical sciences, natural sciences, social sciences, arts, humanities). It is very, very easy to fulfill these requirements and students can use some AP or IB credits too. There is a language requirement for all arts and sciences students - six semesters and this can be intimidating. However, it is a requirement that is not as bad as it seems. It can be fulfilled in three ways: six semesters of one language, three semesters of one language and three semesters of another language or three semesters of a language and three culture classes that coordinate with that language. Most majors require 10 classes which is very easy to achieve since the average student will take 34 classes before graduation. The student body is not competitive with each other; most students are just competitive with their self. That makes for a very productively academic environment that is not cutthroat at all. The average class size is 20 students, although some introductory classes will be very large. If its a large class, it will break down into smaller discussions sections. Tufts has eleven different study abroad programs and also accepts credits from many other programs. Students are really encouraged to go abroad and 60% will go abroad at some point during their time at Tufts. Students get assigned to a pre-major advisor upon matriculation and once they declare their major they can pick their own advisor within that department.


Quality of Life

The dorms on campus are really great and there are a variety of different living styles available.


Admissions

The Tufts admissions process is very unique and elicits different information than normal applications so that we can learn more about the students applying. It is lengthy and unfortunately that alone sometimes scares students away from applying. The application includes the Common Application and several supplemental essays. These essays are fun to write, though! They can be silly prompts or an opportunity to write a short non-fiction story or a chance to add something more about yourself. And the optional essay actually is optional! It doesn't change anything about your application if you complete it or not.


Level

3


Graduation Year

2013


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