Benedictine University is a Catholic school originally founded in 1887 by the Benedictine Monks of St. Procopius Abbey in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago.
It now has numerous campuses and programs: four campuses in Illinois, one campus in Arizona, numerous online programs, and two international programs—one in China and one in Vietnam.
Its main campus remains close to its roots and is located in suburban Lisle, Illinois, just outside of Chicago.
Benedictine University describes itself as an inclusive academic community dedicated to teaching and learning as well as truth and justice. As a Catholic school, its mission is inspired by:
- the Catholic intellectual tradition
- the social teaching of the Church
- the principles of wisdom in the Rule of St. Benedictine.
Benedictine University’s envisions itself as a thought leader in Catholic higher education and strives to provide a transformative and integrative educational experience grounded in Benedictine values.
The school aims to help students shape lives of meaning and purpose as engaged citizens who also care for the earth. People of diverse faiths and cultures are welcome at Benedictine University, and overall, the school works to promote the common good.
What Makes Benedictine University Unique?
Benedictine’s past, present, and future exist within a context devoted to Christ. At the core of its work is a love of Christ and neighbor. Beyond that, the school emphasizes prayer, stability, and conversations as ways to live daily life mindfully and in service to and connection with others.
Other values, such as obedience, discipline, and humility, infuse the school’s academic, social, and athletic programs. Students learn about self-knowledge, freedom, and right relationship with God through their academic and social endeavors.
Add to these elements Benedictine University’s devotion to hospitality and stewardship and you’ll see a school with a clear commitment to community and serving the common good.
What Benedictine University Online Is Known For
Benedictine University and its faculty have been thought leaders in education for more than 125 years. A top tier and nationally-recognized university located in the Chicago area, Benedictine is dedicated to lifelong learning for undergraduate and graduate students. We prepare our students for a lifetime as active, informed and responsible citizens and leaders in the community and the world.
In addition, Benedictine University Online programs offer a convenient way for adult learners to learn in a variety of fields.
Benedictine University’s Core Values
Benedictine University embraces the Catholic intellectual tradition which includes:
- A commitment to continuity between faith and reason
- A respect for the cumulative wisdom of the past
- An anti-elitist bent
- A concern for the integration of goals and objectives
- A keep awareness of the sacramental principle
- Attention to the community dimension of all human behavior
It also embraces the following SEVEN social teachings of the Catholic Church which include:
- “The life and dignity of the human person:” human life is sacred and precious.
- “Call to family, community, and participation:” human beings are not only sacred, but social.
- “Rights and responsibilities:” human rights must be protected and responsibilities met.
- “Option for the poor and vulnerable:” humans must pay attention to how the poor fair.
- “The dignity of work and the rights of workers:” the economy must serve people, not the other way around.
- “Solidarity:” we are one human family, no matter our perceived or real differences
- “Care for God’s creation:” we are stewards of God’s creations.
Overall, Benedictine University uses its courses, campuses, and programs to embrace these social teachings and instill in students a wisdom for building a just society and living lives of holiness amidst modern society’s many challenges. The school also embraces the idea that wisdom is an interplay of knowing and living and a matter of character and virtue. The school strives to immerse students in this context.
Benedictine University Ranking
In 2017, U.S. News gave Benedictine University a tied ranking of #220 in the National Universities category.
Its online nursing program tied for #73 in the Best Online Graduate Nursing Programs category.
Overall, U.S. News gave Benedictine University a score of 24 out of 100.
Benedictine University Admissions
The admissions process for Benedictine University varies by program level and type.
High school students applying for entrance into bachelors degree programs must do the following:
- Meet a minimum recommended GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale
- Meet a minimum recommended SAT score of 1060 (combined score)
- Meet a minimum recommended ACT score of 21
- Submit an application to Benedictine University
- Submit official high school transcripts
- Submit official test scores
In some cases, applicants might have to submit a personal statement, a letter of recommendation from a high school counselor, and seventh semester transcripts.
Transfer and international students must meet similar requirements. In addition, transfer students must provide official transcripts from all schools they’ve attended, and international students must achieve a minimum TOEFL score of 79, IELTS score of 6.5, SAT 1 Critical Reading score of 500, and ACT English score of 22.
For graduate, non-traditional, and adult students, admissions requirements vary by program.
Benedict University online admissions has requirements similar to those of on-campus programs.
Benedictine University has rolling admissions, so prospective students can apply throughout the year. In most cases, applicants must pay a $40 application fee and submit transcripts and test scores by particular deadlines. An admissions committee meets one time per week to grant admissions to applicants.
Benedictine University Acceptance Rate and Retention Numbers
U.S. News ranks Benedictine University as selective. In fall 2015, the school had a seventy-nine percent acceptance rate.
Of Benedictine University’s first-time students pursuing bachelors degrees, 70 percent who began their studies in fall 2015 returned in fall 2016. Thirty-two percent of students who started their studies in 2008 earned their bachelors degrees in four years, and thirty-six percent of students who started their studies in 2010 did the same. Fifty-one percent of students who started their studies in 2008 and 2010 earned their bachelors degrees in six years. The school’s overall graduation rate is 51 percent for students who started in fall 2008 or 2010. [i]
Benedictine University Tuition and Financial Aid
The estimated tuition and fees for freshman and undergraduate students at Benedictine University was $32,170 in the 2016-2017 school year. Books and supplies cost an estimated additional $1,510 that same year. The average tuition for graduate students in 2016-2017 was $17,168.
In 2015-2016, ninety-nine percent of full-time, beginning undergraduate students at Benedictine University received financial aid by way of grants and scholarships. Forty-two percent of students (186) received federal Pell grants and fifteen percent received other federal grants. Thirty-eight percent of students (169) received state or local grants and scholarships, and ninety-eight percent of students (441) received institutional grants or scholarships. Seventy-four percent of students (332) received federal student loans and six percent of students took out other student loans.
Benedictine University Student Body
In fall, 2016, 5,892 students were enrolled at Benedictine University. Of those students, 3,171 were undergraduate students. Eighty-five percent of those students attended fulltime. Seventy percent had in-state status, and 29 percent had out-of-state status.
Three percent of undergraduate students that year were enrolled entirely in online education, 8 percent were enrolled in some online education, and 89 percent attended classes entirely on campus. Seventy-six percent of undergraduate students were aged 24 and younger.
That same year, 2,721 students were enrolled in graduate programs at Benedictine University. Eighty-one percent attended school fulltime, and 51 percent were enrolled entirely in online education. Forty-six percent of students in graduate programs attended classes entirely on campus.
Benedictine University Accreditation
Benedictine University has regional and programmatic accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission and other institutions. Its program-level accreditations are from:
- The Illinois State Board of Education, Teacher Certification Section
- The Commission on Accreditation for Dietetics Education of the American Dietetic Association
- The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
Benedictine University has also been approved by the America Chemical Society to award ACS certified B.S. degrees in chemistry and biology.
Benedictine University Faculty
As of fall 2016, Benedictine University employed 144 full-time instructors and 441 part-time instructors. One hundred percent of the school’s instructors devoted themselves to providing instruction; none were required by the school to focus on research or public service activities.vi Faculty at Benedictine University emphasize the Catholic Social Teaching’s key themes when designing curricula, policies, and activities.
At Benedictine University, there are 12 students to every one instructor, and seventy percent of the school’s classes have fewer than 20 students.
Unique Opportunities Including Benedictine University Online Courses
Benedictine University offers Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral online degree programs in business, health care and education designed to fit the needs of busy adult professionals.
- Benedictine offers two Bachelor’s completion programs in Management and Organizational Leadership for adult learners. Students can transfer up to 90 credits into these programs – 18 credits of which can be from prior learning experiences including work/life experience or military experience.
- Business Master’s program offerings include a fully online Master of Business Administration (MBA) with seven concentrations to choose from including Finance, Health Care Administration, Internet Marketing and more. Eligible students may be able to waive the GMAT requirement.
- Health Care Master’s program offerings feature an Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) with two concentrations from which to choose including Nurse Educator and Nurse Executive Leader or a NEW Dual MSN/MBA or a Master of Public Health with three certificates to choose from which can be earned in conjunction with your Master’s or standalone.
- Benedictine is a military friendly university and offers a streamlined, expedited admissions process as well as a 10 percent tuition reduction for active service military, their spouses and veterans.
- Benedictine University offers competitive tuition rates as well as financial aid opportunities, including an award of up to $10,000 for eligible online graduate students of Benedictine University Online Programs.
Why We Love Benedictine
- The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
- In 2013, Forbes magazine named Benedictine among “America's Top Colleges” for the third year in a row.
- In 2013, U.S. News & World Report ranked Benedictine University as one of the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs in the nation.