Incoming Students

First Year Students

First-Year students are defined as those who have been directly admitted to an undergraduate degree program at American University and have not attended another postsecondary institution (not including dual-enrollment credits completed during high school tenure). The housing status will be parallel to how the Office of Admissions has classified an incoming student. Students apply through the First-Year application process.

  • 2024 - 2025 Housing Application Opens: April 2, 2024; 12:00 PM (noon)

  • Priority Application Deadline: May 7, 2024; 11:59 PM

Abroad at AU Students

Students participating in the Abroad at AU program receive an email from Housing and Residence Life sharing the application process and available residence halls.

  • 2024 - 2025 Housing Application Opens: April 2, 2024; 12:00 PM (noon)
  • Priority Application Deadline: April 12, 2024

Transfer Students

Transfer students are defined as those who have been directly admitted to an undergraduate degree program at American University and have previously attended another postsecondary institution. The housing status will be parallel to how the Office of Admissions has classified an incoming student. Students apply through the transfer application process.

  • 2024-2025 Housing Application Opens: May 22, 2024: 12:00 (noon)
  • Priority Application Deadline: July 3, 2024; 5:00 PM 



Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

No. There is no residential requirement to live on-campus. However, almost all first-year students and many transfers chose to live with us to ensure their transition to AU is successful and they can connect with the larger AU community.

First- and second-year students who meet the housing application deadlines are guaranteed housing. Third- and fourth-year students are provided the opportunity to apply for on-campus housing but are not guaranteed. We do not provide housing for graduate students. Off-campus housing support is offered through our off-campus housing page.

Students enrolled in an on-campus undergraduate program at American University are eligible to live on campus. Students must be part-time or full-time, either in-person or online.

All first- and second-year resident students are required to enroll in a meal plan.

Visit One Card & Dining Services for more information.

All residence halls are open over Thanksgiving and Spring Breaks, but will close for the Winter Break period. Only one residence hall will be open over Winter Break. Interested residents will complete a Winter Break application and will pay a separate fee for housing over the break.


See the first-year and transfer pages for more details on which residence halls are available to you.

Students who are seeking a single room as a medical accommodation should reach out to the Academic Support and Access Center. Otherwise, single rooms are not available to incoming students. 

Requests must be received by ASAC by May 7, 2024 for first-year students and July 3, 2024 for transfer students. 

Students must deposit to AU before consideration of a housing accommodation request.

Black Affinity Housing is a live-in theme program located in Roper Hall. The housing celebrates the diversity of Black and African American students and culture at American University. All American University undergraduate students who reside in the Black Affinity Housing help foster a warm and vibrant community supporting social, personal, and academic success. The community is open to all undergraduate students.


We encourage you to talk with your roommate - avoid using social media as the only means to get to know each other. Create time to interact with your roommate over the phone, Facetime, or Zoom. Do not just text! Find common interests or take the opportunity to learn about something new to you that your roommate enjoys and can teach you about. Do not forget that your Community  Advisor (CA) can be a great resource to help you in this endeavor.

20 Open-Ended Questions to Help You Break the Ice:

  • What are three things that you are really good at?
  • What is a food that you would never want to eat?
  • What would you do if you suddenly won $100,000?
  • What is your favorite food?
  • How can people tell when you are annoyed?
  • What is a cause that you are incredibly passionate about?
  • What is one of your favorite things about your hometown?
  • How do you like to spend your free time?
  • What is your favorite snack?
  • How would your friends at home describe you?
  • Where is your favorite place in the world?
  • What is your favorite color?
  • What do you need when you are stressed?
  • If you could meet anyone from any time or place, who would it be?
  • What is your favorite movie?
  • What kinds of things make you angry?
  • How would you describe your family?
  • What is your proudest moment?
  • What kind of music to you like?
  • What kinds of things make you really happy?

You and your roommate(s) will share a unique relationship during your time together. You may not always get along with each other, care to spend a lot of time together, or become good friends, but you will share part of your lives with each other. Our philosophy is to encourage roommates to work through initial concerns and perceptions of each other rather than expecting a roommate switch.

  • Before move-in: Due to high occupancy on campus, there will not be vacancies to change around students after the initial assignment. The Residence Life and Housing staff are available over the summer and through the start of the semester to help students navigate building connections with their assigned roommate(s).
  • After move-in: A room change freeze is active the first three weeks of the semester as housing confirms arrivals and assignments. An open room change process (emailed to students and available online) will allow students to request room changes within their assigned living community. Please note some communities will remain at high occupancy and room changes may not be an option and staff will assist students in identifying possible room swap opportunities. 

Move-In and Living

Move-In typically happens in late August, you can find specific dates and more information on our Opening and Closing webpage.

Visit our packing list for information on what to bring and what to leave at home.

AU Mail Services will provide instructions for mailing and shipping items for the start of the fall semester. Confirm these dates to avoid issues with items arriving early and being returned to sender.

Well, that's up to you! But for some AU-specific ideas, you can check out the Best Nest Contest images. To learn about a variety of vendor product and services available to you, you can also check out the webpage, Personalize Your Room.