Secondary School Program Admissions


Eligibility for 2020

The admissions committee is looking for mature, academically motivated students who meet both the following criteria:

  • Will graduate from high school and enter college in 2020, 2021, or 2022
  • Are at least 15 years old by December 1, 2019, and will not turn 19 years old before July 31, 2020

How To apply

The Secondary School Program application is open. Do not complete the application on your smartphone. Please use a laptop or PC. Keep in mind that you may only apply for the Pre-College Program or the Secondary School Program.

Complete an online application and provide supplemental materials, including:

  • The $75 nonrefundable application fee
  • Counselor report: you can request a link be sent to your counselor in the application.
  • Transcripts from ninth grade to fall 2019 grades: this can include progress reports, report cards, and educational summaries from your high school.
  • If English is not your native language, submit scores from the TOEFL iBT or IELTS language proficiency exam along with your application.

The account must be created, and the application must be completed by the prospective student and not by parents/guardians, agents, counselors, or anyone else.


Applications are now being accepted.

New student? To get started, you will need to create a DCEKey through the DCE Login Portal. 

Already have a Harvard Key or DCEKey? Simply log in to access the application.


Application Tips

  • No fee is required to start your application. You will be asked to pay the nonrefundable application fee only upon submitting the application. 
  • Choose your program before you start. Keep in mind that you may only apply to one program: the Secondary School Program or Pre-College Program.
  • Use a desktop or laptop when completing your application. You will be asked to write short essays as part of your application. This may be challenging to do on a mobile phone. Therefore, we advise using a desktop or laptop computer for completing your application.
  • Watch your inbox—you’ll receive an email prompting you to log in to check your application status. If you submit your application on or before January 31, you’ll be notified of the committee’s admission decision by February 25. If you apply between February 1 and March 13, you’ll be notified by April 7.

Admissions decisions are only valid for the summer term in which you apply. You may not defer admission to the program to a subsequent summer term. 

international students

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. Be sure to read International Student Guidelines

Harvard University continues to monitor the evolving outbreak of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). Out of an abundance of caution, we encourage you to be as flexible as possible with your summer travel plans. Proceed with your planning if it makes sense for you to do so, and consider alternative options if the situation continues to worsen. In addition to your own health and safety, please keep in mind payment deadlines and refund policies, visa application requirements, and travel logistics when making your decision. We recommend checking this advisory and the Harvard Coronavirus website frequently for updates.

2020 Application Deadlines

Financial aid application deadline:

Friday, January 31 at noon

Friday, March 13 at noon

International residential students: Monday, April 20
Domestic residential students: Monday, May 4
Commuting and online students:

Monday, May 4

Selection process

There will be two admissions deadlines for 2020: January 31 for early applicants, and March 13 for regular applications. After April 7, there will be rolling admissions, if spots are still available in the program.

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 your application. You want to be sure that we have all of your application materials on hand.

Apply Now

The Secondary School Program application is now open.

Get Started

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