Guidance for Parents and Families
Common Questions from Prospective Parents and Families
What makes Biola different from other Christian universities?
Biola scores #1 overall — out of 562 Christian colleges and universities in the U.S. and Canada — for making faith central to its identity, curriculum, community and policies, according to findings from a team of Baylor University researchers published in the book Christian Higher Education: An Empirical Guide.
There are many great Christian universities, but several things set Biola apart. First, Biola is one of the few national universities where all students, faculty and staff profess faith in Jesus Christ. Within this vibrant, all-Christian community, we’re connected by a shared understanding of what matters most in life.
Second, Biola is consistently recognized as a national leader in academic strength, including a position within the first tier of U.S. News and World Report’s prestigious national university category.
Third, Biola offers the most robust biblical curriculum requirement of any Christian university. At many Christian universities, students take two or three Bible courses as part of their degree programs. At Biola, most traditional undergraduate students take the equivalent of 10 Bible and theology courses (30 credits), qualifying most for a minor in biblical and theological studies. Graduates leave with a deep understanding of God’s Word and a firm foundation for a resilient, virtuous Christian life.
On top of those distinguishing factors, Biola integrates a Christian perspective into the entire academic experience — every class across every program. We’re also committed to students’ spiritual growth and well-being through chapel programs, conferences, pastoral care and community standards on sexual ethics, alcohol and other areas of Christian living.
How can I learn more about my student’s desired major?
Biola offers more than 50 majors, 40 minors and 150 concentrations at the undergraduate level. You can use the degree finder to explore the details of each program — including degree overviews, courses, faculty, learning opportunities, career outcomes and more. Even better, schedule a visit or attend an event for the opportunity to attend classes, meet professors, tour facilities and hear more about our graduates’ career success.
Will my student fit in at Biola?
If you ask students what they love most about Biola, “community” tends to be near the top of the list. Biola is a vibrant community of Christian students, faculty and staff. Transitioning to college can feel intimidating, but we make it easy for students to get connected, build friendships and feel at home. Whatever your student’s background, interests, hobbies or heritage — there are so many ways to reach out, connect, explore and even try something new. The Office of Campus Engagement is a great place to learn about our many clubs, events, traditions, student government and other opportunities to get involved. Biola also has a wealth of opportunities for involvement in the arts, NCAA Division II athletics and the culture of Southern California.
Can our family afford Biola?
Biola is more affordable than you might think — dramatically lower than the “sticker price” in most cases. All incoming undergraduate students (yes, 100% of them) receive some form of financial aid, with the average aid package totaling more than $33,000. Each year, Biola awards more than $70 million in aid to help make a premium Christian education more affordable and attainable. And when you factor in summer courses, accelerated programs, other cost-saving options and help from academic advisors, Biola works hard to help students graduate on time and on budget.
To see an estimate of how much financial aid you might qualify for, take 5 minutes to fill out the net price calculator. Or, better yet, complete the FAFSA and Biola’s free application for admission.
Will my student be safe at Biola?
Your student’s safety is of paramount importance to us, and we take our commitment to safety personally. From campus safety officers stationed at our main gated entrances to key card entry for residence halls, we’ve created a secure environment for students to live and learn. Our security officers are always accessible — on campus, at events, on watch throughout nearby neighborhoods — ensuring a safe college experience.
In fact, Biola is widely recognized as a model for campus safety. Our campus safety chief John Ojeisekhoba (also known as “Chief O”) trains other universities all around the world on the best practices for keeping their campuses safe, and he’s received numerous awards for excellence from the California Highway Patrol, the Los Angeles Police Commission and other law enforcement groups — including recognition as national “Campus Safety Director of the Year.”
What are my student’s housing options?
Students younger than 20 have the option to either live on campus in Biola’s residence halls or to live at home. Biola’s residence halls are some of the safest, cleanest and highest-quality in the country. In the 2024 Niche Best Colleges list of the “Best College Dorms in America,” Biola ranks 43rd overall — out of almost 1,400 universities! Our housing and residence life teams work to pair students with compatible roommates and build a strong Christian community in each residence hall, where students experience an atmosphere of safety and belonging.
Biola also has an incredible community of off-campus commuter students. Over 38% of Biola undergraduates live off campus — with some choosing to stay at home to save money and enjoy a closer connection with their families.
How will Biola prepare my student for career success?
Biola has a proven track record of preparing students to thrive in their lives and their careers. We’ve got an active and student-focused Career Center. Our programs educate students with real-world experience, top-of-game professors. Our location in the heart of Southern California — a global economic and cultural hub — puts students in close proximity countless internships and professional opportunities, which is crucial to success after graduation. As they move into their careers, over 96% of graduates say they’re satisfied with the level of intellectual and spiritual preparation that they received at Biola.
We’re interested in learning more about Biola. What steps should we take?
We’re glad to hear it! One of the easiest places to start is filling out a simple request info form. That’ll allow our admissions team to reach out to your student and to send you more information about Biola, including details about academic programs, admissions events, financial aid, important dates and more.
Another great step is to schedule a visit, which gives you the opportunity to experience the Biola community in person, meet professors, tour the campus, eat in the Café, attend chapel, sample a class and more.
And whenever you’re ready to apply — even if you haven’t requested information or scheduled a visit — complete a free application. Visit our Undergraduate Admissions page to find admissions requirements and important dates.
If your student has already been accepted to Biola, work with them to complete the items on the “What’s Next” page, including intent to enroll, registration, financial aid tasks and payment.
What I value most about Biola is that it is grounded in the Word of the Lord in a way that makes its academic rigor all the more well rounded and beautiful. Also, I am so grateful for the community of students, faculty, and staff whose love for Jesus encourages and pushes me farther along my walk with the Lord every day.
I value Biola’s community of Christ followers who are passionate about their relationship with and knowledge of who Christ is, and commitment to growing in community. I value esteemed professors who humble themselves to serve the student body, both in academia and in their personal life.
The integration of my faith with everything that I do is the most valuable part of Biola. Whether in academics or extracurriculars, God is involved throughout it all.
I value the Biola community and how centered it is on Christ, challenging me to serve Him wholeheartedly and be obedient to where the Spirit is calling me.
I value the personal relationships that are formed between faculty and students and the culture of mentorship surrounding that.
|Biola application opens
|First early action application deadline (decisions released by January 15)
|FAFSA opens. File this as early as possible in order to get a timely, accurate estimate of your financial aid award.
|Second early action application deadline (decisions released by February 15)
|Regular application deadline
|Cal Grant GPA verification form is due (California residents only).
Recommended deadline to file the FAFSA.
|National Decision Day (when students notify Biola of their intent to attend)
Note about application deadlines: Some programs have different application and notification deadlines and may require a separate application. For information, please visit application steps for Snyder School of Cinema and Media Arts, Torrey Honors College, Conservatory of Music, the Nursing Program, and the Stewart Science Honors Program.
Your Guide to Choosing a College
Figuring out where you want to go to college — let alone what you want to study or how to get scholarships — can be a daunting process. But it doesn’t have to be! “Your Guide to Choosing a College” is a free, easy-to-read resource that helps Christian students and parents understand everything you need to know for your college search.