BU vs. Wellesley


Should I go to Boston University or Wellesley College? Compare the two schools' costs, SAT, ACT, GPA, admissions criteria and outcomes to help you determine if BU or Wellesley is the better college for you.

BU Comparison

Boston University vs. Wellesley College comparison
BU Wellesley
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Location Boston, MA Wellesley, MA
Setting Large City Large Suburban
Students 34,657 2,534
Type Private 4 Year Private 4 Year
Religious Affiliation - -
Status Non-profit Non-profit


Tuition (In State) $52,816 $53,408
Tuition (Out of State) $52,816 $53,408
Room & Board $15,720 $16,468
Avg Net Price $33,728 $20,189
Avg Grant Aid $34,156 $45,777
% Receiving Grant Aid 48% 57%

Admission and Academics

Acceptance Rate 22.1% 19.5%
Avg High School GPA 3.59 3.86
Admissions Standards Exceptional Elite
Applicant Competition Very High Very High
ACT Range 30/33 30/34
SAT Range 1330/1500 1330/1520
Application Deadline Jan 1, 2020 Jan 15, 2020


Graduation Rate 85% 92%
Median Earnings (After 10 years) $72,000 $68,100
Making Student Loan Payments 82% 86%
Median Student Loan Debt $27,000 $8,900
Median Loan Payment $279 $92
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Comparable Facts

  • Boston University is larger than than Wellesley based on total student enrollment (34,657 students vs. 2,534 students)

BU vs. Wellesley Cost Comparison

Which college is more expensive, BU or Wellesley?

  • Wellesley College is 1.1% more expensive to attend than BU for in-state tuition ($53,408.00 vs. $52,816.00)
  • Out of state tuition is 1.1% higher at Wellesley than Boston University ($53,408.00 vs. $52,816.00)
  • The typical actual cost that students pay to attend (average net price) is less at Wellesley College than BU ($20,189 vs. $33,728)
  • Living costs (room and board or off-campus housing budget) at Boston University are 4.8% lower than costs at Wellesley College ($15,720 vs. $16,468)
  • More students receive financial grant aid at Wellesley College than Boston University (57% vs. 48%)
  • The average total grant financial aid received by Wellesley College students is 34% larger than aid received Boston University ($45,777 vs. $34,156)

BU vs. Wellesley Admissions Difficulty Comparison

Which college is harder to get into, BU or Wellesley? Average SAT and ACT scores plus acceptance rates offer good insight into the difficulty of admission between Wellesley or BU .

  • The average SAT score at Wellesley College (1369) is 66 points higher than at BU (1303)
  • Incoming Wellesley students have a 1 point higher average ACT score (30) than students at BU (29)
  • BU has a higher acceptance rate (22.1%) than Wellesley (19.5%)

BU vs. Wellesley Graduation Outcomes Comparison

Which is better, BU or Wellesley? Graduation rate, salary and amount of student loan debt are indicators of a college which offers better outcomes for its graduates. Compare the following outcomes facts between Wellesley and BU.

  • The graduation rate at Wellesley is higher that Boston University (92% vs. 85%)
  • Graduates from Boston University earn on average $3,900 more per year than Wellesley graduates after ten years. ($72,000 vs. $68,100)
  • Wellesley College students graduate with a $18,100 lower median federal student loan debt than BU graduates. ($8,900 vs. $27,000)
  • Wellesley graduates are paying $187 less per month on federal student loans than BU graduates. ($92 vs. $279)
  • More Wellesley graduates are actively paying back their federal student loan debt than former BU students, three years after graduation. (86% vs. 82%)

Sources: U.S. Department of Education https://nces.ed.gov IPEDS and College Scorecard https://collegescorecard.ed.gov/