NIU at a Glance

Fast Facts

Student and Faculty Profile

NIU celebrates diversity in all its forms including gender, race, ethnicity, ability, spirituality, sexuality, age and all individual identities. We believe that engaging across differences enriches our students’ learning and personal growth while at NIU.

Total Student Enrollment: 17,169 (Fall 2018)

  • Undergraduate: 12,788
  • Graduate: 4,121
  • College of Law: 260

Total Faculty/Staff: 3,344 (Fall 2017)

  • Instructional faculty: 1,177
  • Administrative and professional staff: 774
  • Operating staff: 1,393

Average Student Age

  • Undergraduate: 22
  • Graduate: 32

Male/Female Categories

  • Undergraduate: 50.8% male; 49.2% female
  • Graduate: 46.6% male; 53.4% female 

Ethnic/Racial Categories–Undergraduate (Fall 2017)

  • White: 55.0%
  • Black: 15.8%
  • Hispanic/Latino: 17.9%
  • Asian: 5.4%
  • 2 or more races: 3.7%
  • Non-res. Alien: 1.9%
  • Native American: 0.1%

International Students

1,211 international students from 77 different countries

Average High School Class Rank and ACT Score (Fall 2017)

  • High School Class Rank (percentile) for NIU freshmen: 63.3
  • ACT Score for NIU freshmen: 21.9
  • ACT Score for high school graduates (national average): 21

Academic Information

College Structure: Seven (7) degree-granting colleges:

Degrees Awarded (2017)

  • Bachelors: 3,561
  • Masters: 1,489
  • Advanced: 26
  • J.D. Professional/Law: 70
  • Doctorate: 176
  • Total: 5,322

Number of academic departments: 39

Undergraduate:

Graduate:

Degrees offered (24): Au.D., B.A., B.F.A., B.G.S., B.M., B.S., B.S.Ed., D.P.T., Ed.D., Ed.S., J.D., M.A., M.A.S., M.B.A., M.F.A., M.M., M.P.A., M.P.H., M.S., M.S.Ed., M.A.T. (Master of Arts in Teaching), M.S.T. (Master of Science in Taxation), M.S.T. (Master of Science in Teaching), Ph.D.

Vision, Mission and Accreditation

Northern Illinois University's vision is to be an engine for innovation to advance social mobility; promote personal, professional and intellectual growth; and transform the world through research, artistry, teaching and outreach.

The mission of Northern Illinois University is to empower students through educational excellence and experiential learning as we pursue knowledge, share our research and artistry, and engage communities for the benefit of the region, state, nation and world.

In pursuing our vision and fulfilling our mission, we value and practice:

  • Curiosity and creativity.
    • We provide our students active learning experiences.
    • We champion innovation.
    • We commit our resources to supporting students, faculty and staff in their research, artistry and professional development.
  • Equity and inclusion.
    • We seek and are strengthened by the diverse perspectives and experiences of our university community members.
    • We use an inclusive decision-making process.
    • We appreciate and respect every member of our community.
  • Ethics and integrity.
    • We prepare our students to become global leaders who work to build a better society.
    • We model ethical behavior in and out of the classroom.
    • We are transparent and accountable to our stakeholders.
  • Service and stewardship.
    • We serve society and confront local, national and global challenges through collaborations that improve our learning, teaching and research.
    • We make accessible the knowledge and resources we create.
    • We promote our students' success through advising and mentoring.

Approved by the NIU Board of Trustees, 3/7/19.

Download a printable poster of the vision, mission and values statements (PDF).

Northern Illinois University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

NIU is included in the Research Universities – High Research Activity category of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and is a member of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities.

The university and its colleges have institutional membership or other affiliations in or with the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, American Council on Education, Association of State Colleges and Universities, Council of Graduate Schools, and Universities Research Association.

The university is also fully accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education to offer teacher education programs and offers several teacher certification programs which are approved by the Illinois State Board of Education.

For more information on accredited programs, visit the Institutional Effectiveness website or call 815-753-3545.

Higher Learning Commission
230 South LaSalle Street
Suite 7-500
Chicago, IL 60604
800-621-7440

NIU Includes You

Huskies value the ideas and insights every person has to offer, and we discover our commonalities by embracing and discussing our differences. Coming to NIU means contributing to a thriving and diverse community rooted in educational excellence.


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History and Traditions

Chartered in 1895, Northern Illinois University first opened its doors as the Northern Illinois State Normal School in 1899 as a teachers' school. We have since grown into a world-class, research-focused public institution that attracts students from across Illinois, the country and the world.

President: Dr. Lisa C. Freeman

Administration: Senior Leadership

Governing Body: NIU Board of Trustees

Huskie Traditions and Cheers

While in Huskie Country you'll want to to make sure you're familiar with a handful of the traditions and cheers conducted at various sporting events. It's another way to showcase your Huskie spirit and provide some energy for our student athletes.

Huskie Kickoff Key Jingle

At football games, when it’s NIU’s turn to kick off everyone pulls out their keys and jingles them in anticipation of the kick.

Huskie “First Down.”

At football games, when NIU achieves a first down the announcer will say, “And that’s good for another Huskie...” then you yell, “FIRST DOWN!”

Red and Black.

During sporting events, the cheerleaders will assign sections of the crowd either the color red or black. When they point to your section you scream out your assigned color. It’s a competition to see which color can yell the loudest. Get your voice ready though, this tends to go on for a while.

The Huskie Fight Song.

Every student has to learn the Huskie Fight Song. It’s kind of a thing, so you don’t want to be the only one not singing!

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