The application period for the 2016 Secondary School Program is open.

Please note the following:

  • Applicants requesting on-campus housing have until May 9 to submit applications.
  • Applicants taking courses online or commuting to campus have until June 1 to submit applications.
  • International applicants are only eligible to enroll as online students at this time. 

See the program calendar for all dates and deadlines.


The Secondary School Program admissions committee is looking for mature, academically motivated students who graduate from high school and enter college in 2016, 2017, or 2018.

To apply:

  1. Complete an online application and provide the supplemental materials, including a counselor report, transcripts, and the signed rules and regulations. The application fee is $50 and nonrefundable.

  2. If English is not your native language, submit a TOEFL, IELTS, or Pearson PTE Academic score along with your application. The Harvard Summer School institution code is 8578. If you wish to request to waive these tests, submit the test waiver request form.

  3. Track the receipt of your application materials online to ensure we have received all materials. Keep in mind that it can take up to two weeks for us to process all of your materials.

  4. Watch your inbox. You’ll receive an e-mail notice prompting you to log in to check your application status. You can expect to be notified approximately two weeks after your complete application has been submitted.

Keep in mind that you may only apply for the Secondary School Program or the Pre-College Program.

Are you an international student?

If you are not a US citizen or permanent resident, an F-1 student visa is required to study on campus. To be issued the F-1 student visa, you must first obtain an I-20 certificate of eligibility from Harvard Summer School.

Please note: Because the submission period for I-20 certificate requirements is now closed, international applicants are only eligible to enroll as online students at this time.

Are you a Boston-area ninth grader?

Although the full program is not open to ninth graders (graduating in 2019), we do allow Boston-area freshmen to apply provisionally to the program if they're interested in taking one course. Download the provisional application for ninth graders.

Selection process

Admissions decisions are made on a rolling, first-come, first-served basis, and the selection process is very competitive.

There is no minimum GPA requirement. We evaluate all information submitted—including transcripts, counselor reports, and your GPA—when considering your application. You are welcome to submit PSAT, SAT, or ACT test scores, but they are not required.

Application tips

  • Apply early, as space in the program is limited.

  • If English is not your native language, take one of the required proficiency tests early to ensure you get your scores in time to apply early in the application cycle.

  • Track our receipt of your supplementary materials by logging into online services. You want to be sure that we have all of your application materials on hand.


Course registration opens March 1 at 9 am (Eastern Time) for students who have been admitted to the program. Most courses do fill up quickly, so plan to register early.

Learn more about courses

If you are admitted to the program as a residential student, you will also request housing online beginning March 1. Housing is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis to eligible students, so be sure to request housing early.

Have a question?

Our Enrollment Services team is here to help.

Request Information

Register for courses

Now through May 16, you may register for summer 2016 courses. Browse the course catalog

See how to register