Freshman Application Requirements


The optional interview provides an opportunity for an applicant to have a meaningful conversation with a Stanford alumnus/a. This two-way exchange allows you to learn more about Stanford, and the Admission Office to learn more about you. Restrictive Early Action interviews occur during the first few weeks of November and Regular Decision interviews from mid-January to mid-February.

Interview Areas

For the 2018–19 admission cycle, the interview program will operate in 53 locations in the United States and U.S. territories and 58 international locations, as noted below.

United States and U.S. Territories

  • Forty-nine full states (all but California) plus Washington D.C., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • Fifty-two California counties: Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, Colusa, Del Norte, El Dorado, Fresno, Glenn, Humboldt, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Lake, Lassen, Los Angeles, Madera, Mariposa, Mendocino, Merced, Modoc, Mono, Monterey, Napa, Nevada, Orange, Placer, Plumas, Riverside, Sacramento, San Benito, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Joaquin, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Solano, Sonoma, Stanislaus, Sutter, Tehama, Trinity, Tulare, Tuolumne, Ventura, Yolo and Yuba. Additional California counties will be added in the future.

International Locations

  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Brazil
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Greece
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Kenya
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malaysia
  • Mexico
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Nigeria
  • Norway
  • Panama
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Qatar
  • Republic of Korea
  • Romania
  • Russian Federation
  • Singapore
  • Socialist Republic of Vietnam
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Turkey
  • Uganda
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United Republic of Tanzania

Interview Logistics

Interview Assignment

  • Applicants do not need to request interviews; if your high school is in an interview area (listed above), you are eligible for an interview with a local, trained Stanford alumnus/a volunteer. It may be that we do not have enough volunteers in your area to interview each applicant. Please do not worry if you are not contacted, as your application will be considered complete without an interview. Applications are not pre-screened for interview eligibility.
  • The majority of Stanford interviews are conducted in person; an interviewer will invite you to meet you in a public place, such as a coffee shop or library. You may be offered the opportunity to have a video chat interview on a mutually agreed upon platform, if necessitated by distance or schedule constraints.
  • The interview is a one-on-one experience between you and your interviewer. Parents, siblings and friends should not be present during an in-person or video chat interview. Parents who wish to meet the interviewer may do so prior to the start of the interview.
  • Since the program is based on high school location, and interviews are not yet offered in the San Francisco Bay Area, no interviews are offered on the Stanford campus. Applicants attending high schools not in an interview area are not eligible to interview in interview areas.

Accepting/Declining an Interview

  • Please frequently check the email address you provided on your application as this is the information the interviewer will use to contact you. If you do not respond promptly to accept or decline an interview invitation, you may be contacted by text or phone.
  • If you would like to accept an interview but are unable to make one of the times proposed by the interviewer, please respond suggesting times that work for you.
  • Should you wish to decline an interview please communicate this to the interviewer rather than ignore the invitation. Declining an interview will not negatively impact your admission decision.
  • If you or someone in your family knows the interviewer who contacts you, please clarify that with the interviewer so that we may match you with another volunteer.
  • To maintain a fair and unbiased interview program, we ask that you do not network with those who may know your interviewer.

Interview Preparation

  • Since the interview is meant to be an informal conversation, no formal preparation is needed. There is no set list of questions that interviewers are required to ask, which allows for each interview to be a unique conversation.
  • Prior to the interview, you may want to think about questions to ask your interviewer, as this is an opportunity to learn more about Stanford.
  • You are welcome to dress in typical high school attire.
  • Please be prompt for your interview. When scheduling the interview, you may want to ask for the best way to connect should you have a last minute complication.
  • The interviewers are provided with your name, high school name and contact information. Since they will not review resumes, transcripts or portfolios there is no need for you to present this material during your interview. The focus of the interview is conversation.
  • Please do not bring resumes, transcripts, test scores or other supplementary materials to share with interviewers. The interviewers are not provided this information by Stanford, and we ask that you do not provide it.
  • Prepare to have an enjoyable experience talking about yourself and learning more about Stanford.

After the Interview

  • You may think of information after the interview that you wish you had shared, however, we ask that you do not contact your interviewer to provide additional information or to ask follow-up questions.
  • Email if you have a question about interviews.
  • Email if you have a question about your application or admission.


Updated on December 14, 2018 11:53 AM