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Northeastern University

Founded in 1898, Northeastern University is an elite top 40 US university with approximately 20,000 students located in the heart of Boston, America’s most popular college town, and a second campus in beautiful Seattle.

Find out how to apply to Northeastern University.

About Northeastern University

The University offers a comprehensive range of highly ranked bachelor’s degrees and master’s programs. Northeastern University is famous for integrating work experience into all degrees through one of the oldest and most highly recognized Internship/Co-op programs among all US universities.

Pathways to Northeastern University

International students can qualify for degree entry at this highly ranked private university through one of these pathways:

Northeastern University’s Boston Campus

Boston is America’s college town, with over 350,000 students at over 50 local universities. Northeastern’s campus is located in the center of the city and is the largest campus in the city of Boston.

The campus has excellent public transportation links, but it is also easy to explore Boston’s rich history and academic culture on foot – visit museums, historic sites, and some of the best educational institutions in America. New York City, Canada, and the beaches of the Atlantic coast can be reached in 2-3 hours.

Northeastern University’s Seattle Campus

Located on the west coast of the USA, Northeastern University’s Seattle Graduate Campus opened in January 2013, and offers students a range of industry-aligned master’s degrees.

Conveniently located in the South Lake Union neighborhood, home to a wide variety of tech companies and innovative businesses, the Seattle campus is a great location for students looking to gain valuable employment opportunities.

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International student pathways to Northeastern University

Our pathway programs are your first step to earning a bachelor’s and/or master’s degree from Northeastern University. International students are advised on the best route to success at this top-ranked US university, and options depend on a student’s education level, academic grades, and English proficiency.

Northeastern University American Classroom Program

Undergraduate students with an English language score below the bachelor’s entry requirement can start with the American Classroom program at Northeastern University in Boston.

  • 4–12 month pathway program
  • English and academic skills classes combined with university courses taught by University faculty
  • Earn 8–16 undergraduate credits, which are transferred into a bachelor’s degree (join in  Year 1, semester 2)
  • On successful completion, choose from 50 bachelor’s degrees including majors in art, media, design, social science, engineering, life science, business, criminal justice, computer science and more

Northeastern University Global Pathways Program

Graduate students who need to improve their English level to meet master’s entry criteria can first study this pathway program at Northeastern University in Boston or Seattle.

  • 4–8 month pathway program
  • Pathways courses include TOEFL Test prep where necessary
  • Progression to top-ranked degrees (including MBA, MS Finance, MS Engineering, MS Biotechnology, MS Computer Science) as well as fast-track 18-month master’s degrees.
  • On the Seattle campus, earn a degree in MS Commerce and Economic Development or MS Project Management.

Northeastern University Bachelor’s Completion Program

Undergraduate students who already have completed the equivalent of 50 undergraduate credits from another university (in the USA or another country), can join this degree completion program:

  • Fast-track 21 month program to graduation with a bachelor’s degree
  • 3 degree program choices: BS Management; BS Leadership; BS Finance & Accounting Management
  • Option to continue onto a 1 year master’s degree in Northeastern’s College of Professional studies

Direct entry to Master’s degrees

International students who meet all requirements for a master’s degree at Northeastern University’s College of Professional Studies, can apply for direct entry.

Why study at Northeastern University?

A Top 40 ranked American University

  • Categorized as a top tier research university based on research activity, out of only 115 universities in the USA (Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education)
  • Top 200 university in World University Rankings (Times Higher Education, 2017) 
  • Ranked 39th Best National University (U.S. News, 2017)
  • Ranked 2nd for Best Career Services (Princeton Review, 2017)
  • Ranked top 25 for Best Co-ops/Internships (U.S. News, 2016)
  • Ranked #4 in “Up-and-coming” university in the USA (U.S. News, 2015 & 2016)
  • Top 25 Best Undergraduate Business School (Bloomberg BusinessWeek, 2016)
  • Ranked #15 in Best International Business Program for undergraduates (U.S. News, 2016)
  • Top 150 World Subject Ranking in Business (Shanghai Academic World Ranking, 2015)
  • Top 300 World Subject Ranking in Economics (QS World University Rankings, 2016)
  • Top 200 World Subject Ranking in Chemical and Material Science Engineering (Shanghai Academic World Ranking, 2016)
  • Top 150 World Subject Ranking in Physics (U.S. News, 2016)

Northeastern University’s Co-Op Work Placement Program

  • Northeastern’s Co-op program gives students the opportunity to alternate semesters of classroom study with up to 18 months of full-time professional work experience.
  • 50% of 2013 graduates received a job offer from a previous Co-op employer
  • 90% of graduates from 2006-2013 were employed full-time or enrolled in graduate school within 9 months of graduation
  • Over 100 years old, Northeastern started the first Co-op program of its kind.
  • Over 9,800 Co-op work placements per year and over 2,900 employers in 160 cities and over 80 countries. Northeastern University Co-op students can work anywhere in the world with great companies like Apple, Google, General Electric, HSBC, Novartis, Procter & Gamble, and the US White House.
  • Learn more about Northeastern’s experiential learning program.

Student life at Northeastern University


As a Northeastern University pathway student, you’ll have a range of housing options to choose from, including:

  • Off campus student residence halls and local homestays in Boston
  • Furnished apartments in Seattle

Learn more about student housing options at Northeastern University in Boston and Seattle.

Dining options

Students on Northeastern’s Boston campus have so many dining options right at their fingertips. On-campus venues include award-winning cafes and restaurants, spots to pick up a quick nutritious bite, and even a seasonal food truck parked in the central quad! The University caters to diverse diets, including halal, kosher, vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free menus.

Off-campus restaurants serve everything from local Boston fare to international treats. Chinatown is less than 15 minutes by public transport, right next to the North End’s famous family-run Italian restaurants. Meanwhile, you’re never far from fresh seafood; New England clam chowder, lobster rolls and oyster stew are just a few local favorites.

English conversation partners

We run a weekly conversation partner program that matches international and American students. It’s a great way to help you gain confidence in speaking English as well as to make new friends!

Local attractions

Boston sports and outdoor activities

Boston is the home of classic American sports! Students can watch a baseball game at the Red Sox’s historic Fenway Park, or cheer on the Boston Bruins in an exciting ice hockey match. Alternatively you may decide to support the NFL Football New England Patriots or the NBA Basketball Boston Celtics.

If you are more interested in participating in sport, there is a wide variety of parks where you can play soccer or go for a run.

If you need a longer break from your studies, you can take advantage of the excellent rail connections between Boston and Vermont to go hiking or skiing. You can also practice your sailing in Boston Harbor or Plymouth, approximately 40 miles (64km) south of Boston.


Students can shop at the Prudential Mall and Copley Place Mall, which are within walking distance from the center. Both malls are connected by a footbridge that spans the busy Huntington Avenue.

Staying connected

International students find it easy to stay in touch with their family overseas, as they are never far from a telephone or internet cafe in Boston. There are also many banks and post offices in central Boston to choose from.

History and culture

One of the oldest cities in the country, Boston has a rich history that dates back to the early 17th century and boasts a wealth of cultural attractions unrivalled in the United States.

Visit the attractive 19th century Quincy Market or North End, take in the amazing collections of the Boston Public Library or a world-class exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts. The Boston Public Garden is the perfect place for a casual stroll, while the Boston Freedom Trail is a great way to get some exercise while exploring some of the city’s historic sites.

Explore the city

Seattle is a fantastic place to be a student. There are a number of historical, cultural and recreational opportunities to enjoy in the city – from markets and shopping districts, to tours and tourist attractions such as the Seattle Aquarium. Uncover more fun things to do in Seattle.

Space Needle: Seattle’s most iconic landmark offers a fantastic way to see the entire city from one spot. Visitors can experience fantastic 360° views of the city from the observation deck at the top of the 605 ft tall attraction. The Space Needle also includes the SkyCity revolving restaurant. Find out more.

Pike Place Market: The oldest continually operating farmers’ market in the United States is located in downtown Seattle overlooking the Elliott Bay waterfront. Pike Place Market is known for its seafood and produce stands, and is home to the famous fish market, as well as the first-ever Starbucks coffee shop. It makes a great destination to explore.

Museums: Seattle is home to a number of excellent museums. Downtown you will find the renowned Seattle Art Museum, which showcases art from around the world, and The Henry Art Gallery, one of the biggest contemporary art galleries in Washington. In the Central District there is the Seattle Asian Art Museum, focusing on Chinese & Japanese Art, and the Frye Art Museum, featuring a small collection of paintings by German artists.

Shopping: Downtown Seattle is the retail hub where you can find Westlake Center mall on Pine St (downtown), or Westfield SouthCenter Mall. Both offer numerous retail outlets selling a variety of items, as well as restaurants and food courts. Transport to and from both malls is easy – beneath the Westlake Center mall is an underground tunnel for buses and the light rail, and the SouthCenter mall is serviced by the #150 bus from downtown.

Seattle’s outdoor activities

Seattle is a very scenic city, full of parks and outdoor spaces that provide visitors with a number of relaxing and picturesque spots.

Discovery Park is the largest city park in Seattle. It contains a wildlife sanctuary making it one of the best places in the city to view wildlife, such as birds and marine mammals. It is also an ideal place to kite ride, play sports and view both Cascade and Olympia Mountain ranges.

The Waterfront in Seattle offers amazing views of the city. It is an area of parks, piers, promenades and public spaces, and offers visitors an array of sights and tastes. The city is known for its seafood restaurants and Asian cuisine, and the waterfront has an eclectic selection. Highlights along the waterfront include Seattle Aquarium, Olympic Sculpture Park and Seattle Art Museum. Things to do on the waterfront.

Walking and cycling in Seattle offers a fun way to explore the city. Seattle is built on seven adjacent hills, so has a very hilly terrain, making it an ideal city to exercise by uphill bike riding and jogging. There are also extensive bicycle trails and lanes mapped in Google Maps.

Live and study among top companies

The Seattle campus is conveniently located in the South Lake Union neighborhood, home to sleek offices, and a wide variety of well-known tech companies and innovative businesses including Amazon, Microsoft, Boeing, Starbucks, Nordstrom and Expedia. It is a great location for students looking to gain valuable employment opportunities in a busy and bustling medical and technological epicenter.

“I oversee the day-to-day operation of Northeastern University’s Global Pathways Program including admission, student services, and recruitment of international students.”

Francis Griffin – Director, Northeastern University Global Pathways Program

brandon1“I organize international student orientation, as well as activities and events through the semester to integrate our students into the University and the city of Boston.”

Brandon Bachner – Campus Manager, Northeastern University

meili-jin-neu-2 “My role is to help Chinese students with their application process and provide resources for students to enjoy, and get the most out of their study in Boston.”

Meili Jin – International Admissions Advisor, Northeastern University

ducis-viard-neu “I help students get to know one another and adjust to US university life by planning events and social activities on campus and around Boston!”

Ducis Viard – Student Services Coordinator, Northeastern University