Baylor University: Christian College & Research Institution

Baylor University

Baylor University is a private Christian university and a nationally ranked research institution in Waco, Texas. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating university in Texas and the largest Baptist university in the world. Baylor University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Baylor University’s president Dr. Linda Livingstone “has set the university on a course that integrates academic, teaching and research excellence with an uncompromising Christian identity and positions the university to have a transformative impact on our students, on higher education and the world.”

Under Dr. Livingstone’s leadership, Baylor has risen in such categories as First-year Experience, Best Undergraduate Teaching, and Best Colleges for Veterans. In a 2022 survey by national research firm Morning Consult, Baylor was ranked as one of the Top 10 Most Trusted Universities — including a No. 2 ranking by parents and employers.


Baylor University offers undergraduate and graduate degrees, including doctoral and professional degrees. It is classified among “R1: Doctoral Universities – Very High Research Activity.”

Baylor offers 142 undergraduate degree programs across a variety of fields such as business, engineering, nursing, education, music, and more. The university also offers 75 master’s degree programs and 42 doctoral programs.

Baylor has a dozen different academic units including 3 colleges, 8 schools, and 1 seminary. These 12 degree-granting academic units include:

  • College of Arts & Sciences
  • Honors College
  • Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences
  • Diana R. Garland School of Social Work
  • Hankamer School of Business
  • Louise Herrington School of Nursing
  • School of Education
  • School of Engineering & Computer Science
  • School of Music
  • Graduate School
  • Law School
  • George W. Truett Theological Seminary


Baylor University has expert and caring faculty who actively mentor students at every level, from freshmen to Ph.D. candidates. Baylor faculty are highly engaged teacher-researchers who are dedicated to the development of students as leaders in their respective fields. Several former and present members of faculty at Baylor are or were prominent proponents of intelligent design, most notably philosopher William Dembski (now at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary), Christian philosopher Francis Beckwith, and electrical engineer Robert J. Marks II.


Baylor University’s mascot is the American black bear, and all Baylor athletic teams are nicknamed “Bears.” Baylor student athletes participate in NCAA Division I sports as part of the Big 12 Conference. Men’s sports include football, baseball, basketball, tennis, golf, cross country, track and field. Women’s sports include basketball, softball, volleyball, soccer, tennis, golf, equestrian, track and field, acrobatics and tumbling. Students can also participate in a variety of intramural sports.

Campus Life

Baylor’s 1,000-acre campus is located on the banks of the Brazos River next to I-35, between the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and Austin. The university is a vibrant community for more than 20,000 students representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and approximately 89 foreign countries, with a gender distribution of 42 percent male students and 58 percent female students. At Baylor, 36 percent of students live in college-owned, -operated, or -affiliated housing and 64 percent of students live off campus.

Baylor University cultivates a rich student life that will help you grow intellectually, spiritually and emotionally. Various clubs and organizations provide each student with an opportunity to become engaged with an organization that shares his or her interests. Whether you’re enjoying Diadeloso (the campus-wide “Day of the Bear” celebration), taking some time to reflect in chapel, or just hanging out over coffee, you’ll feel like a part of the Baylor family from the moment you set foot on Fountain Mall.

Even though Baylor is a large nationally ranked research institution, it also has a unique Christian college culture that affects the ways students interact with each other. Baylor continues to hold firm to the conviction that the world needs a preeminent research university that is “unapologetically Christian.” While Baylor University was founded as a Baptist college, the student body includes members from many faith traditions. Learn more about Baylor’s Christian identity here.


Admission to Baylor is by formal application and consideration for admission to the university is highly competitive. Baylor University has an acceptance rate of about 50% and is among the top 18% of the most difficult universities to gain admission to in the United States. It’s also expensive, with tuition of $50K/year.

The university seeks to enroll students with strong academic preparation who show the greatest potential to succeed. If you went to a private high school or are homeschooled, the admission process is the same as it is for public high school students. However, there are a few differences you should be aware of:

  • Baylor abides by the Code of Federal Regulations. According to Title IV, any degree-seeking student who graduates from either a private school or a home school that is not recognized by the state in which it is located must be 17 years of age before the first day of class. If a student does not meet this age requirement, we require a GED certificate prior to registration.
  • If you are a transfer student who is under 17 and do not have a high-school diploma approved by the state, a GED will not be required if you have an associate’s degree and at least 60 hours of transferable credit.
  • Your high school transcript should include a list of all completed courses, grades received for each course, original signature (if mailed), and other information pertinent to your educational background. A final high school transcript that includes a graduation date is required when you enroll. Important: Your financial aid package could be at risk if documentation of high school graduation is not received.
  • Home-school students are required to submit standardized test scores with their application. You may submit test scores from either the Classic Learning Test (CLT)SAT or ACT exam.

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