The Worcester Dining Commons at UMass Amherst
Undergraduate Admissions

Waitlist FAQ

The Spring Option for Waitlisted Students

At this time, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to accommodate all students who indicate an interest in attending UMass Amherst in January. Once we have closed the fall class, we will contact all students who have expressed interest in the spring option and direct their next steps.

No. Checking one of the options related to the spring semester simply advises Admissions that you may be interested in attending UMass Amherst for the spring term. If your grades and courses on the final high school transcript with graduation date are consistent with the academic record with which you applied, you will be considered for the spring semester, provided there are no disciplinary or criminal issues that might keep you from being admitted.

No.

Yes. You may enroll at another college or university during the fall semester before joining UMass Amherst in the spring. You are also welcome to explore online courses at UMass Amherst for the fall.

No. While most students enroll elsewhere in the fall, it is not required.

All students interested in joining UMass Amherst for the spring semester, and who will be attending another institution in the fall, should:

  • Take the writing placement test at the college or university. It is very important that you enroll in the suggested first-year English composition or writing course. UMass Amherst has a first‐year writing requirement.
  • Consult with your academic advisor at the college or university where you will be attending. Ask about courses typically taken by first‐year students in your major. Such courses may include foreign languages, social sciences, humanities, and natural sciences. Some courses may also fulfill some of your UMass Amherst General Education requirements.  
  • Take the math placement test and enroll in the suggested math course at the college or university.  

Courses taken at other institutions will be evaluated after you enroll at UMass Amherst for transfer credit in accordance with established policies. Students need to submit an official college transcript to UMass Amherst as soon as it becomes available. It will be helpful to your UMass Amherst academic advisor if you bring a copy of your fall class schedule or an unofficial copy of your transcript to your New Student Orientation session in January.

Yes. More information about New Student Orientation dates and processes, including information about on‐campus housing, will be provided in November.

Yes. Housing is provided for first‐year students who request on‐campus housing and who pay the enrollment deposit by the designated deadline.  

We encourage students to file the FAFSA form and to list UMass Amherst as a recipient of FAFSA information. For further information, please contact the Office of Financial Aid at 413‐545‐0801 or visit the Financial Aid website.

Yes. You can apply these awards to the spring semester, provided you have filed a FAFSA with our school code (002221), submitted your Koplik certificate or Adams award letter to the Financial Aid Office, and you meet other requirements published on the Massachusetts OSFA website. The amount of the award per term is $857.00.

For further information about the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship, please contact the Massachusetts Board of Education at 781‐338‐3678 or visit the website. For further information about the Stanley Z. Koplik Certificate of Mastery Award, please contact the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education at 781‐ 338‐6252 or visit the website

No. As a waitlisted student you may complete up to one semester’s worth of credit at another institution during the fall semester. If you complete more than a semester’s worth of credit, you would need to apply to UMass Amherst for admission as a transfer student.

Carefully and realistically consider all of the options available to you at this time. As mentioned previously, if you have been accepted at another school, then we recommend you secure your spot there. This way, you will not find yourself without a college to attend in the fall.

Important Information for All Waitlisted Students

For the fall 2021 first‐year class, we received more than 40,000 applications for a class of approximately 5,350. In such a competitive environment, and with a limited number of first‐year spaces, we are not able to admit all the students who presented strong academic credentials.

No. Denied means that the university has decided not to admit a student. Students on the waitlist are neither admitted nor denied, and, depending on our class needs, some may be admitted at a later date.

There are four waitlist options that you may choose:  

  • Fall option: If you are only interested in entering UMass Amherst in the fall semester (September)
  • Spring option: if you are only interested in entering UMass Amherst in the spring semester (January)  
  • Both (fall or spring): if you are interested in entering UMass Amherst in either the fall or spring semester  
  • Withdraw: If you are not interested in remaining on the waitlist

Yes. However, you cannot be admitted to any major from the waitlist unless you submit the waitlist response form, accessible through your applicant portal, by the May 15 deadline.

Except for the College of Nursing, there are opportunities to join more selective majors and programs at UMass after enrollment. Please check the specific department or college website for more information on requirements for internal transfers to these majors/programs.

Every year is different in terms of how many applicants are placed on the waitlist and how many students are selected for admission off the waitlist for either fall or spring semester. For that reason, and because circumstances are especially unpredictable given the global health crisis this year, we do not publish waitlist numbers.

The waitlist is not maintained in any priority/numeric order, and waitlisted applicants are not ranked.  As space becomes available in the class in early May, all students who choose to remain on the waitlist will be considered.

While we are delighted that UMass Amherst is your first choice, this will not influence the admission decision. The best way to enhance your chances is to reply to the waitlist response form as quickly as possible. You can access the waitlist response form in your applicant portal.

A student has to reply to the waitlist response form as quickly as possible to be considered for admission. The university will decide if it will draw from the waitlist around the May 1 National Candidate Reply Deadline, once we determine how many enrollment deposits have been paid. Students selected first from the waitlist will be those who reply to the waitlist response form by the May 15 deadline and who select either Fall (join the waitlist for only the fall semester) or Both (interested in both fall and spring semesters).

The best way to enhance your likelihood of being selected is to reply to the waitlist response form as quickly as possible. Choose either Fall or Both to indicate your interest in joining the waitlist.

You may wish to check with your school counselor to ensure that we have your most recent grades. Please do not send academic information that we received previously. In addition, you do not need to send additional non‐academic information (recommendations, etc.). Sending emails or letters, visiting our office, asking others to contact us on your behalf, or offering to pay the enrollment deposit immediately will not strengthen your chances.

The majority of students on the waitlist are not offered fall admission. However, waitlisted students may be considered for the spring semester, provided that:

1) The waitlist response form is returned by May 15 and you selected Spring or Both.

2) Your grades and courses on the final high school transcript with graduation date are consistent with the academic record with which you applied.

If we decide to admit students from the waitlist, Admissions will contact applicants in mid‐May. Students will be contacted at the telephone number and/or email address listed on their application. For students who indicate interest in being admitted, we will provide them with an admissions decision and ask them to make a commitment to UMass within two weeks. If the student decides not to accept our offer of fall admission, we ask to be notified promptly, so we can make waitlist admission offers to other students.

Yes, you should consider alternative college plans, since there is no guarantee that we will be able to offer admission from the waitlist. That is why we encourage students who have been waitlisted, and who have been accepted to another college or university, to confirm their place at that other institution by May 1.

It is unlikely that you will recover the cost of your enrollment deposit, as these are typically nonrefundable. Colleges and universities consider the enrollment deposit proof of your intention to enroll, and they have specific policies about refunds. Please contact the specific institution directly to see if your enrollment deposit, or any part of it, is refundable.