How to Get into The Bronx High School of Science
Bronx Science is one of the 8 specialized high schools of New York City for which you have to take the SHSAT (specialized high school admissions test). Bronx Science has produced eight Nobel Prize-winning alumni, more than any other secondary school in the country. Here's what you need to know about the admissions process...
Cover photo by Bxsstudent.
Bronx High School of Science Overview
Bronx Science is one of the 8 specialized high schools of New York City for which you have to take the SHSAT (Specialized High School Admissions Test). All of these schools are known for their academic rigor, driven students, great course offerings, and exciting extra-curricular opportunities – and Bronx Science is no exception.
Bronx Science has produced eight Nobel Prize-winning alumni, more than any other secondary school in the country. Ivy Tutors Network’s Founder, Lisa Speransky, is also a Bronx Science grad!
Where Is Bronx High School of Science?
Bronx Science is located at 75 W 205th St in the Bronx.
Most students get there by either taking the subway (4 train to Moshulu Parkway, B/D to Bedford Park Blvd, or 1 train to 231st Street and then a short bus ride) or by taking a private bus that picks up at various locations in Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan.
Many freshmen start out by taking the private bus, and as they become upperclassmen, start to take public transportation. While NYC public school students are eligible for free metrocards, the private bus service must be paid for and is somewhat costly….
What Does Bronx High School of Science Specialize in?
As the name suggests, Bronx Science students tend to be very strong in science and math, but all students are required to take on a well-rounded and rigorous academic course load.
To graduate, students must pass Regent exams in:
- Global History
- U.S. History
- Integrated Algebra, Geometry, and Algebra 2 & Trigonometry
- a Regents in any World Language
You don’t need to be a math or science genius to attend Bronx Science. In fact, many humanities-focused students thrive at Bronx Science. But you do need to be academically-minded and seek out challenging coursework.
Bronx Science offers all of the AP courses, except for AP German Language and Culture – that’s 37 AP classes! In addition to the many college-level language, literature, and history classes available, students who favor the humanities can work on the literary journal, the student-run weekly news show, the newspaper, the yearbook, or join the Speech and Debate team, which is ranked #1 in the entire country! It was even profiled in New York Magazine and Fox 5 recently.
Similarly, students who are excited about design, engineering, tech/programming, and business can take high level courses in those subjects and join one of the exciting programs at Bronx Science’s IDEAS institute.
Above all, Bronx Science is known for its first-rate teachers and faculty.
What Rank Is Bronx Science?
According to US News, Bronx is ranked #5 for New York High Schools and #35 in National Rankings.
But statistics like Bronx Science’s 8 Nobel-prize winning alumni make it #1 in many people’s eyes.
Notable Bronx Science Alumni
Notable alumni of Bronx Science include Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Jon Favreau, Ronald Lauder, Harold Bloom, Min Jin Lee, 8 Nobel laureates, and 8 Pulitzer Prize winners!
Bronx High School of Science Admission Requirements
To get into Bronx Science, you must score relatively high on the SHSAT compared to other students who took it that year. Bronx Science has the third highest SHSAT cut-off score. The SHSAT is the only criterion for entry. In other words, Bronx Science does not look at past standardized test scores, transcripts (grades), attendance, or writing samples. There is no interview either – just the SHSAT, which is typically given the last weekend of October.
The approximate cut off score for acceptance to the specialized high schools of NYC are listed below with their corresponding 2022 numbers.
SHSAT Score Cut-offs 2022
- Bronx Science 524
- Stuyvesant 563
- Brooklyn Latin 497
- Brooklyn Technical 506
- HSMSE @ CCNY 532
- HSAS @ Lehman 516
- Queens Science @ York College 523
- Staten Island Tech 527
Who Can Go to Bronx Science?
All current eighth grade or first-time ninth grade students who live in New York City are eligible to take the SHSAT, and therefore seek admission to Bronx Science.
Bronx High School of Science Acceptance Rate
Admission to Bronx Science is very competitive. Approximately 28,000 students take the SHSAT in a typical year, and out of this number, only 800 will be accepted to Bronx Science, which is an acceptance rate of under 3% .
Bronx High School of Science Admissions Process
The only criterion for admission to Bronx Science is to have received a high enough score on the SHSAT. This 3-hour test is open to all current eighth grade or first-time ninth grade students who live in New York City.
IMPORTANT. If you want to get into Bronx Science, you must rank it as your first choice school when registering for the SHSAT unless you are also interested in Stuyvesant High School. The way the process works, you are automatically placed in your highest choice school for which you score higher than the cutoff. You cannot change your first choice after the test. This means that if you score high enough for Bronx Science, but ranked Brooklyn Tech first, you will get into Brooklyn Tech but NOT Bronx Science.
Before registering for the SHSAT, we highly recommend doing some research on the specialized high schools (including attending virtual and in person school tours, if available) and giving some thought to how you are going to rank them.
Getting Into Bronx High School of Science: In 5 Steps!
- Research Bronx Science and the other specialized high schools. You can learn more about the specialized high schools here and by visiting each of their individual websites. We highly recommend attending any tours or information sessions that are available, either in-person or online.
- Take a diagnostic SHSAT. This will provide you with a better sense of your strengths and weaknesses, and a valuable roadmap for topics to review and testing skills to master. We can help administer this test and provide a comprehensive report to help organize the test prep process.
- Study for the SHSAT. We recommend students start studying for the SHSAT in the second semester of 7th grade if they are taking it as an 8th grader, or the second semester of 8th grade if they are taking it as a 9th grader. The key to mastering the SHSAT lies in consistent practice. Students not only need to learn the material covered on the test, they also need to practice essential testing skills, such as time management.
- Take additional proctored practice tests after several months of study, and/or a month before the test date, to gauge the student’ progress, inform their long-term test prep plan, and build their confidence in test taking. Like the diagnostic test, these tests should be timed and proctored (by a parent or tutor), re-creating the actual test conditions so that the student can accurately assess their test taking skills. Students should make sure they understand why they got the problem wrong (yes, all of them!) before moving on to the next test.
- Register for the SHSAT. Finally, you will need to register for the SHSAT and rank your school choices. Registration opens in the fall and can be done through your MySchools account or a school counselor.
Ivy Tutors Network has helped thousands of students improve their scores by learning essential test-taking strategies, filling in content gaps, and building confidence. Regular SHSAT Tutoring is a great way to create the structure students need to consistently practice and see results.
Our SHSAT Strategies course is another great way to get students ahead of the curve. In this small group online workshop, students take a diagnostic exam, review content, and learn tricks and strategies for excelling on the SHSAT.