Texas Tech University Guide

The Ivy Scholars guide to Texas Tech’s culture, admissions, and other essential information for prospective students and their families.

Location: Lubbock, Texas

Mascot: The Masked Rider

Type: Public Research Institution

Population: 38,000 (32,000 undergrads)

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About Texas Tech

The seventh largest school in Texas, and the largest in the Western half of the state, Texas Tech was established as a technical institution. It’s known for its strong focus on research, spirited student body, and athletic prowess. With rivalries with many of the other public universities in Texas, Tech usually comes out ahead in sports.

Texas Tech Statistics

Year Founded: 1923

4 Year Graduation Rate: 35%

Gender Distribution: 55% male, 45% female

Acceptance Rate: 71%

Residency: 91% in state, 1% out of state, 8% international

Location Type: Urban

Schedule System: Semesters

Student/Faculty Ratio: 20:1

Average Class Size: 30

Demographics: 56% Caucasian, 28% Hispanic, 7% Other or Unknown, 6% Black, 3% Asian

National Rankings

US News Rankings:

  • #93 Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs
  • #105 Top Public Schools
  • #218 National Universities

Independent Rankings:

  • #28 Best Colleges for Agricultural Sciences per Niche
  • #72 Top Public Universities per Niche
  • #80 Colleges with the Best Student Life per Niche
  • #107 Public Colleges per Forbes
  • #116 Best Value Colleges per Forbes
  • #311 National Universities per Forbes

Texas Tech Admissions Information

Application Deadlines:

  • Priority: December 1st
  • Regular Decision: August 1st
  • Transfer Deadline: May 1st

Notification Dates:

  • Priority: Rolling
  • Regular Decision: Rolliing

Acceptance Rates:

  • Priority: 71%
  • RD: 71% 
  • Transfer: 82%

Average Applicant Pool: 25,200

Average Number of Applicants Accepted: 17,400

Average Number Enrolled: 5,900

Application Systems: Apply Texas, Common App

Average GPA: 3.57 weighted

SAT Scores: 25th percentile – 1070, 75th percentile – 1240

ACT Scores: 25th percentile – 22, 75th percentile – 27

*Test mandatory. Writing sections optional.

Demonstrated Interest: Texas Tech considers demonstrated interest.

Read more about demonstrating interest.

Recommendation Letter Policies: While no letters are required, up to three letters (2 teachers and 1 counselor) are suggested for students who do not meet the cutoff for automatic admission.

Texas Tech Essay Prompts:

  • Essays are not required, but they are recommended for students who do not meet the cutoff for automatic admission.
  • Common App Personal Statement (650 words) OR Apply Texas Prompt A.

Texas Tech Essay Writing Tips

Special Notes:

  • Texas high school students in good standing may gain automatic admission if they are in the top 10% of their class, or if they meet test score minimums, which vary depending on a student’s class standing.
  • The colleges of Business and Engineering exclusively admit students who meet the automatic admission criteria.
  • All students must submit proof of immunization.
  • Students applying for art, music, or performing arts are required to submit a portfolio of work or audition. More information here.

Need assistance with the college admissions process?

Texas Tech Academics


Core Requirements:

  • All students are required to take classes in core areas: Written Communication (6 hours), Oral Communication (3 hours), Mathematics (6 hours), Life and Physical Sciences (8 hours), Language, Philosophy, & Culture (3 hours), Creative Arts (3 hours), Social and Behavioral Science (3 hours), American History (6 hours), Political Science/Government (6 hours), Multicultural Requirements (3 hours)
  • Comprehensive General Education Information

Courses of Study: 

  • 150+ Majors Offered
  • Option to double major
  • Popular majors include Interdisciplinary Studies, Health & Physical Education, Business Administration, Marketing and Psychology
  • Minors Offered

AP Credit Policies:

Special Programs

Honors Programs:

  • The Honors College is a small community with its own programs, housing, and advising, offering a community of scholars for high-achieving students. Students must apply to the honors college separately as an extension of their university application. However, students will not be considered for honors until they are accepted into the university. The honors program requires the submission of two additional essay questions, and two letters of recommendation. 
  • Departmental Honors (contact individual departments for more information)
  • Graduation Honors: Students may earn honors (including Latin honors) based on GPA
  • Academic Honors Societies

Research Availability:

Study Abroad: 

Business Options: 

  • Rawls College of Business offers seven majors, along with a number of certificate programs and minors for students who wish to specialize further. 
  • There are dual degree programs, offering a joint BBA/MSA, BBA/MS in finance, or the STEM pathway, which offers a MBA program for undergraduate STEM majors.
  • Students in the business school can also double major in other schools at the university.
  • Scovell Business Leadership Program provides additional opportunities to high-achieving business students.

Pre-Med Options:

  • Pre-med is considered a designation, and not a major. There is a set track of courses for pre-med students to take to prepare them for med school. Otherwise, pre-med students can major in any program they prefer.
  • See Texas Tech’s Pre-Health Advising page for more information on planning a pre-health academic programme.
  • Automatic admissions program for Honors College students to the medical school. They also offer an early acceptance program.


Additional Specialty Programs: 

Student Life at Texas Tech University

School Motto: From here, it’s possible.

Mission and Values:

  • Mission: As a public research university, Texas Tech advances knowledge through innovative and creative teaching, research and scholarship. The university is dedicated to student success by preparing learners to be ethical leaders for a diverse and globally competitive workforce. The university is committed to enhancing the cultural and economic development of the state, nation and world.
  • Additional Information
  • Student Testimonials: Niche, Unigo, Grad Reports

House System:

Freshmen are required to live on campus, although they may apply for an exemption. The school offers traditional dormitories, and an Honors College-specific residence hall. The halls also offer optional learning communities for students who want to socialize with students of similar academic interests. There are both apartment-style and traditional residence halls available.

Housing Statistics:

  • 84% of freshmen live on campus
  • 20% of undergraduates live on campus at any given time

Campus & Surrounding Area:  



  • Carol of Lights – Each December, the campus is festooned with lights to celebrate the holiday season. This event celebrates the first lighting of the year with singing and other celebratory, seasonal activities. 
  • Riding into the Sunset – Students wrap this iconic statue in red crepe paper before each home football game to protect it from pranks by visiting teams.
  • Raider Gate – A school-sanctioned tailgating event for students. It starts four hours before every home football game.
  • Arbor Day – Students and faculty gather each year to plant trees and flowers in an ongoing project to further beautify Texas Tech’s campus. 

Student-Run Organizations: 


Greek Life: 20% of undergraduates participate in greek life, including social, academic, and service organizations.


  • The town of Lubbock has a small but vibrant nightlife scene, and many bars and restaurants
  • Sporting events are also very social, and often revolve around tailgating plans and after-parties.
  • Frat and house parties are a common weekend occurrence. 
  • The #4 party school in Texas, according to Niche.

Financial Information

Yearly Cost of Attendance:

  • Total: $27,156/$39,426
  • Tuition and Fees: $11,600/$23,870
  • Room & Board: $9,956
  • Books: $1,200
  • Transportation: $2,400
  • Personal Expenses: $2,000

Financial Aid:

The Red Raider Guarantee is a program which guarantees students meeting the given criteria will have their education funded by a variety of grants, without needing to take out loans. All students are considered for the program once they submit their financial aid paperwork. Students who apply and submit paperwork by the priority deadline are given first consideration for financial aid.

Additional Financial Aid & Student Loan Information


57% of students receive some form of grant aid or scholarships. There are a number of merit based and competitive scholarships available. Students are automatically considered for scholarships when they apply. The school stops giving awards when funding runs out, so students are encouraged to apply early for the best possible aid package.

Fun Facts

  • The largest collection of documents on the Vietnam War in the nation is the Vietnam Center and Archive at the school. It is the first archive of its kind in the country to sign an exchange agreement with the state archive in Vietnam.
  • Raider Red is the school’s alternate mascot, as some schools don’t allow the masked rider’s horse on campus.
  • The “Tech” in the university’s name isn’t an abbreviation.
  • John Hinckley Jr., who attempted to assassinate Ronald Reagan, attended the university sporadically but never graduated. 
  • Notable alumni include quarterback Patrick Mahomes, and former President of Panama Demetrio B. Lakas.
  • Students wishing to be the Masked Rider mascot must audition and hold the position for 1 year, during which they make 300+ appearances. 
  • The statue “Riding into the Sunset” originally faced due West, but this meant visitors to campus were greeted by the rear end of the statue. Texas Tech decided to rotate the statue by 23 degrees so the rear end cheekily faced Texas A&M instead.
Wendy Y.
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