Admission to the freshman class is highly selective and is contingent upon successful completion of required high school courses at a level consistent with the university’s admissions standards. The primary criteria for admission are the high school transcript and SAT/ACT scores. Other criteria, including the level of academic challenge, extracurricular activities, work, etc., are also considered.
A complete application includes the following material:
- A complete Common Application (including the UMass questions)
Official high school transcript (grades 9 -11)
First-term senior grades should be sent as soon as possible.
- SAT I and/or ACT scores sent electronically by the testing agency.* The SAT is required for all freshman applicants, though UMass Amherst neither requires nor recommends the optional SAT essay. The ACT is an option for students to use in the admissions process. All scores must be sent directly from the testing agency. The UMass Amherst SAT code is 3917 and the ACT code is 1924. We are unable to process “rush” test score reports. Test scores are not required for students who have been out of high school for three or more years.
- Letter of Recommendation
- Application fee of $80
- *Learning-disabled Massachusetts residents who submit documentation of disability are eligible for exemption from the standardized test score requirement. A letter is required from the high school guidance counselor confirming that the student has a diagnosed learning disability.
High School Unit Requirements
Minimum subject matter requirements must be met (see chart below). The rigor of the curriculum is strongly considered. We appreciate applicants who take challenging courses, including honors, Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) courses, if available.
When assessing academic achievement, course grades as well as grade trends are important, including course selection and grades in relation to the desired major. A strong senior schedule helps show the applicant’s commitment to higher education. If the high school provides a class rank, that is taken into consideration as well.
- English: 4
- Mathematics (Algebra II minimum): 4 including math in the senior year of high school
- Natural Science (3 labs): 3
- Social Science (one course in US history): 2
- Foreign Language: 2 of same language
- Electives (from areas above, arts and humanities, or computer science): 2
Applicants to the College of Engineering, Isenberg School of Management, or the Computer Science major must have four math units including an advanced math course, such as pre-calculus, calculus or trigonometry. Applicants to the College of Engineering must also have chemistry and physics.
Architecture, Art, Dance, and Music Majors
Applicants to the Architecture, Art, Dance, and Music majors are encouraged to contact the appropriate department and apply as early as possible to allow enough time for an audition or portfolio review. Students must have their admission application on file with Undergraduate Admissions before auditions or portfolio reviews will be scheduled.
UMass Amherst seeks to admit students who will contribute fully to campus life, inside and outside the classroom. Therefore, all non-native speakers of English must demonstrate English language proficiency. The following are ways in which you can satisfy the English language proficiency requirement:
- TOEFL: A minimum composite TOEFL score of 80 on the Internet-based TOEFL with minimum of 17 on each subscore (code #3917)
- IELTS: A minimum composite IELTS score of 6.5 on the academic test with minimum of 6.0 on each subscore
- English education: Entire secondary education is at a school where English is the primary language of instruction
- Unscripted interview: While not required for admission, all international students may choose to submit a third-party unscripted interview. If you choose to submit an interview, companies that provide this service include InitialView.
If you are providing proof of English language proficiency based on one of the test scores listed above, please note that the score reports must be less than two years old and come to Undergraduate Admissions directly from the testing service.
Please note: Waiver of the English proficiency testing requirement will be granted only after our verification that the applicant has satisfied one of the above waiver criteria, based on official documentation contained in the student's application materials. The official verification process will be conducted after the student's application has been submitted and reviewed.
ESL Placement Exam: Some applicants may also be required to take a University-administered English language proficiency examination to determine their eligibility for placement in the university’s English as a Second Language (ESL) course sequence.
Home-schooled applicants are required to submit all of the application materials required for freshman applicants, including standardized test scores, a personal statement, and a transcript. It is understood that the transcript of a home-schooled student may differ from that of a traditional high school student. Regardless of the format, a transcript should include all 9th to 12th grade courses (including those in progress) and the timeframe of each course (academic year and semester). In addition, an assessment of performance (a letter grade, percentage, narrative assessment, etc.) is needed. Occasionally, applicants are asked to submit additional information describing the curriculum and/or texts used.
Home-schooled students who are admitted are required to provide the University with proof of graduation in one of the following ways:
- An official final transcript from the local school district.
- An official final transcript from a home-school association or agency.
- An official GED/HiSET score report.
- An official college transcript(s) showing successful completion of 27 college credits
Home-schooled students who have completed AP exams and/or college coursework must request that those official score reports and transcripts be sent directly to the Admissions Office.