Carson-Newman University - Colleges of Distinction - Colleges of Distinction
Carson-Newman University
Students experience what higher education can be at this nationally recognized university, founded in...

Carson-Newman University

Jefferson City, Tennessee

Carson-Newman University students experience what higher education can be at this nationally recognized university, founded in 1851. This liberal arts-based institution integrates faith and learning in a nurturing and rigorous teaching environment where students come first. Carson-Newman offers the resources necessary for the enrichment of each student’s education, from quality faculty and academic programs to state-of-the-art technology and facilities. Carson-Newman is preparing students everyday to compete on the world stage.


Experience the joys of living 30 minutes outside of one of the country’s most visited national parks while studying one of University’s 50 undergraduate programs or 10 graduate degrees. Students cultivate their mind, discover their passions, and broaden their experiences.

Student Profile

Fall 2016 Enrollment
1,748 undergraduate students
98% of undergrad students are full time
42% male — 58% female
20% of students are from out of state

Faculty Profile

2016-2017 Academic Year
122 full-time faculty
132 part-time faculty
13 to 1 student/faculty ratio

Residence Life

Fall 2016
83% of first year students live on campus
55% of all students live on campus

School Location

Carson-Newman offers a spectacular location in one of America’s most scenic regions. It is situated nearby the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and the state’s third largest city, Knoxville.

High-Impact Practices

Read more about the importance of High-Impact Practices

First-Year Seminars and Experiences X
Common Intellectual Experiences X
Learning Communities X
Writing-Intensive Courses X
Collaborative Assignments and Projects X
Undergraduate Research X
Diversity/Global Learning X
Service Learning, Community-Based Learning X
Internships/Coops/Practicums X
Capstone Courses and Projects/Senior Experience X

Retention Fall 2016

70% of students began in Fall 2015 and returned in Fall 2016 (full time, first time freshmen)

6 Year Graduation Rate 2016

49% of students graduated in 6 years


Nonresident aliens 3%
Hispanic/Latino 3%
Black or African American 8%
White 82%
American Indian or Alaska Native 1%
Asian 1%
Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander 0%
Two or more races 2%
Race and/or ethnicity unknown 1%


The University offers 18 NCAA Division II sports.

Men: Basketball, Baseball, Cross Country, Football, Golf, Soccer, Swimming, Tennis, and Track and Field.
Women: Basketball, Cross Country, Soccer, Softball, Swimming, Tennis, Track and Field, and Volleyball.

Mascot: Eagles
Colors: Orange and Blue

Academic Programs

The University offers 50 undergraduate majors and nine graduate degree programs. All baccalaureate degrees require completion of 128 semester hours. Students must complete the Carson-Newman liberal arts core requirements and a total of 36 semester hours at the junior/senior level. Specific course requirements vary depending on major and degree program.

Undergraduate majors: Art, Biology, Biochemistry, Business, Chemistry, Child & Family Studies, Communication, Consumer Services, Education, English, Exercise Science, Family and Consumer Sciences, Education, Film, Food, Nutrition, Dietetics, Foreign Languages, History, Human Exceptionalities, Human Services, Interdisciplinary Studies, Linguistics, Mathematics, Music, Nursing, Philosophy, Physical Education, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Religion, Social Entrepreneurship, Sociology, Special Education, Theatre, and Pre-Professional Programs.

Additionally, Carson-Newman offers a thriving graduate and adult studies program that includes strong online options such as its doctorate in education.

More Distinctions

  • The University was named a “Great School at a Great Price” in U.S. News & World Report’s 2017 Best Colleges Guide.

  • Carson-Newman was named to the President’s Honor Roll for Service “with Distinction” for 2015.

  • In its 2015 rankings, Washington Monthly named the University No. 9 among the nation’s baccalaureate colleges.

Study Abroad, The Washington Semester, and May Term

Students can spend an entire semester abroad by participating in the London Semester and other study-abroad opportunities. Carson-Newman, along with International Enrichment, Inc., provides all academic and nonacademic support services.

The Washington Semester is available as an internship program primarily for political science and prelaw majors. Through the program, students earn credit for work in the nation’s capital.

Art and foreign language majors may earn credit while studying and traveling throughout Europe during the three-week May term.

Community Service

Students have numerous opportunities to explore community service. The Bonner Center for Service Learning and Civic Engagement prepares future-minded students to be servants and leaders in the community. Student volunteers are committed to building and sustaining a caring community through integration of academic excellence and community engagement. The Appalachian Center serves the physical needs of rural Appalachia and the Samaritan House provides housing for the homeless. Students regularly volunteer and partner with both sister organizations to the University. Carson-Newman honors its twin pillars of academic excellence and Christian service.


Campus Ministries X
Choral groups X
Concert band X
Dance X
Drama/theater X
International Student Organization X
Jazz band X
Literary magazine X
Marching band X
Model UN  
Music ensembles X
Musical theater X
Pep band X
Radio station  
Student government X
Student newspaper X
Student-run film society X
Symphony orchestra X
Television station  

Honors Program

Carson-Newman offers top-notch classroom experiences and cutting edge programs. The Carson-Newman Honors Program provides academic challenges and opportunities for intellectually gifted and curious students through team-taught interdisciplinary classes and extracurricular events. A scholarship competition is held each February.


Across all levels of campus, research is encouraged and cultivated. The annual Student Research, Creativity, and Performance Day showcases one of the distinctives of Carson-Newman, a passion for intellectual inquiry through collaborative scholarship and creative endeavors between students and faculty.

The Film Program

Carson-Newman’s film program offers students the opportunity to earn college credit while participating in internships with regional filmmakers. Through a partnership program with the Los Angeles Film Studies Center, accepted students also have an opportunity to live in L.A. and to work and study with Hollywood filmmakers.


Arts/fine arts X
Computer literacy  
English (including composition) X
Foreign languages X
History X
Humanities X
Mathematics X
Philosophy X
Sciences (biological or physical) X
Social science X


Size 2-9 10-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-99 100+ Total
Number of Classes 124 146 109 68 4 1 0 452

Student Activities

Carson-Newman’s Eagle Scholars program highlights the academic achievements of its student-athletes. It is the only program of its kind in the South Atlantic Conference.

The University offers students 70 campus organizations, including honor societies such as Alpha Chi and Mortar Board, and 40 intramural sports.

The University’s Community, Life and Worship program brings speakers, academics, artists, and other unique individuals and events to campus to integrate faith, learning, and community outside the classroom.

An International Community

Carson-Newman cultivates an international community on campus through its International Education program. Students from around the world study alongside traditional American students. International halls in dorms, language partners, and the International Club all seek to integrate multiple cultures and languages to help all students develop a broader worldview. For the 2016 fall semester, the University welcomed 143 international students from 34 countries to campus.


Coed dorms  
Men’s dorms X
Women’s dorms X
Apartments for married students  
Apartments for single students X
Special housing for disabled students X
Special housing for international students  
Fraternity/sorority housing  
Cooperative housing  
Theme housing  
Wellness housing  
Other housing options  

Students Ready to Succeed

Carson-Newman’s exceptionally high placement rates in professional programs in medicine, law, business, education, and theological study is a testimony to the excellence of its rigorous academic programs. Students leave the University prepared to enter the professional world, with skills that extend beyond their academic program. Carson-Newman alumni constantly demonstrate the value of a liberal arts education through their success both in the professional world and in their personal lives.



6,496 Total Applicants
4,111 Total Admissions
505 Total Freshmen Enrollment

63.29% of applicants admitted

Admissions Deadlines for 2017-18 Admission

Rolling admission? Yes

Admissions Factors

Very Important
Academic GPA
Standardized test scores
Character/personal qualities

Rigor of secondary school record
Class rank Extracurricular activities

Application Essay
Character/personal qualities
Volunteer work

Freshmen Profile Fall 2016

  25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Critical Reading 400 560
SAT Math 440 560
SAT Writing    
SAT Essay    
ACT Composite 20 26
ACT Math 18 25
ACT English 20 26
ACT Writing    

Net Price Calculator 


Tuition $26,200
Fees $1,200
Total $27,400
Room and Board (on campus) $8,630
Estimated Total On Campus $36,030


Average Financial Aid Packages 2015-2016 Final

$23,773 First year students
$17,873 All undergrads

Financial Aid Breakdown 2015-2016 Final

79.2% on average, the percentage of need that was met
24% of financial need students that had need fully met

$17,873 Average need-based scholarship or grant award
$3,623 Average need-based loan