Founded as a seminary in 1820, Indiana University is a Doctoral/Research-Extensive institution, offering doctoral programs in 86 disciplines, master's degrees in 125 fields, professional degrees in two areas, and bachelor's degrees in 98 subject areas. The University/Bloomington has many strong programs in a broad range of fields, but has historically been noted for its strength in the arts, humanities and social sciences, excelling in areas such as sociology, comparative literature, foreign languages, area studies and music. It has some programs, such as folklore and Central Eurasian studies, that are pre-eminent in the country. Additional programs include military service, professional practice, continuing education, and special summer session programs. As one of the leading research universities in the United States, IU is also home to an impressive array of centers, institutes, labs, and research areas.

There are eight IU campuses located throughout the state of Indiana. For the fall semester 2012-2013, the all-campus enrollment was 91,102 students (graduate and undergraduate). The Bloomington campus accounts for the largest portion of the fall 2012/13 total: 42.6 percent of the total.