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 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 five or more years.
- Letter of Recommendation
- Application fee of $75
- *Learning-disabled Massachusetts residents who submit documentation of disability are eligible for exemption from the standardized test score requirement. Documentation includes a copy of either the Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or Section 504 plan OR a letter 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): 3*
- Natural Science (2 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 (Algebra I & II, Geometry, and an advanced math course, such as Pre Calculus, Calculus or Trigonometry). Applicants to the College of Engineering must also have Chemistry and Physics.
* Mathematics units will change to 4 for the class entering in the Fall 2016
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.
All applicants who are non native speakers of English are required to demonstrate their English language proficiency in one of the following ways:
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or IELTS. Official copies of scores must be submitted. For the TOEFL, a minimum score of 80 or better on the internet-based TOEFL (iBT) or 213 or better on the computer-based TOEFL is required, although achieving this score does not guarantee admission. The UMass Amherst TOEFL code is 3917. An IELTS score of 6.5 or higher is also acceptable.
Prueba de Aptitud Academica (PAA): Applicants applying directly from Puerto Rico may take the TOEFL or the PAA and must submit official score reports.
TOEFL/IELTS Exemption: Applicants with strong SAT/ACT scores may receive a TOEFL/IELTS waiver.
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 be different 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 three 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.
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.