Undergraduate Study


This section includes admission and academic policies for students seeking to study in undergraduate programs at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.


Admission policies and procedures vary according to each applicant’s educational goals and prior educational experiences. This section contains information for First Time Freshmen, Transfer Students, Returning UMSL Students, Visiting Students, Non-Degree Students, and UMSL Express for senior citizens. The Office of Admissions contains links to applications for all categories of applicants.

Admission for First-Time Freshmen

The University of Missouri System has a uniform policy for admission of freshman students to its four campuses. The procedure for regular admission from high school is based on high school class rank, performance on a standardized college aptitude test, and required high school units. Veterans and others who have been out of high school for five or more years should refer to the Veterans and Mature Adults section.

Application Procedures
Students applying as first‑time freshmen (i.e., students without previous college work) need to submit the following:

1. A completed Undergraduate Application

2. Application Fee of $35.00 ($40.00 for international students) may be paid by:

  • A check or money order made payable to UMSL
  • A credit card during the online application procedure
  • Cash by appearing in person at the office of the Registrar in 351 Millennium Student Center.

3. High School Transcript and Class Rank.
A transcript must be sent directly from your high school to the UMSL Office of Admissions. The transcript should indicate class rank (if the school computes it), all coursework, and, when available, date of graduation. College aptitude test scores are required and may be submitted via this transcript or directly from the testing agency.

Students from Non-Ranking High Schools
Students applying for Undergraduate Admission who attend high schools that do not rank graduating seniors must present an ACT Composite score of 24 or higher or an SAT composite score of 1090 or higher.

4. College Aptitude Test
Freshman admission requires that a test score be submitted from one of the following:

  • American College Testing Program (ACT) The ACT is administered at many locations across the country. Information is available from http://www.actstudent.org/, or your high school counselor.
  • Scholastic Aptitude Test  (SAT) The SAT is administered at many locations across the country. Testing information is available on the Collegeboard website

When to Apply
Qualified applicants are admitted and notified by letter of their admission in the order that completed applications are received.  Applications are accepted after September 1 for the next fall semester on the basis of six or more high school semesters.

Admission Requirements
Any high school graduate who graduated in1997 or later may be admitted with evidence indicating he or she meets the following requirements:

At least 17 units of credit (One unit=one year in class) as follows:

In addition to the 17-unit requirement, each applicant will be evaluated on high school rank and test score (ACT or SAT). Applicants with a composite ACT score of 24 or SAT of 1100 will be admitted without regard to class rank. Class rank will be used to determine eligibility for admission when the applicant's ACT score is from 17 to 23 (SAT is 800 to 1090). 

If the ACT Composite score is 17 to 23 or the total of SAT Verbal and Math scores is 800 to 1090, the applicant must meet the following high school class rank requirement to qualify for admission.

SAT Total
Verbal, Math
High School Class
 Percentile Rank 













Automatic Admission

Applicants that

A. Rank in the top 10% of the graduating class of a Missouri high school; and

B. Complete the college preparatory curriculum, which includes at least 17 units of credit (four units each of English and math, three units of social studies, two units of a single foreign language, and one unit of fine art); and

C. Submit an ACT/SAT score.

Will be eligible for automatic admission to any campus of the University of Missouri.

Applicants that

A. Graduate from a Missouri high school that does not rank its graduates;  but

B. Have taken a college preparatory curriculum which includes at least 17 units of credit (four units each of English and math, three units of social studies, three units of science, two units of a single foreign language, and one unit of fine art); and

C. Achieve a 3.5 GPA on a 4.0 scale in these core courses; and

D. Submit an ACT/SAT score.

Will be eligible for automatic admission to any campus of the University of Missouri.

Applicants who do not meet these criteria may still be admitted, depending on other evidence of likely success and campus enrollment objectives.

Additional factors considered for admission may include:

For additional information regarding admission requirements, contact the Office of Admissions at 314-516-5451 or by e-mail at admissions@umsl.edu.

Upon graduation, applicants must submit a final high school transcript indicating their class rank and graduation date. First‑time freshmen may be required to take a placement examination in mathematics.

Advanced Standing for Entering Freshmen.
UMSL grants credit hours to entering freshmen who, through their performance on College Board Advanced Placement Tests and faculty‑administered tests, demonstrate proficiency in certain college‑level courses such as biology, chemistry, English, foreign languages, history, mathematics, political science, and physics. For further information and applications, contact College Board Placement. AP Services by phone (888) 225-5427 or email apexams@info.collegeboard.org. The score‑reporting institution code number for the University of Missouri ‑ St. Louis is 6889. College Board will send the scores directly to the Director of Admissions. 

Dual Credit
Accredited programs such as the Advanced Credit Program at the University of Missouri-St. Louis enable qualified high school juniors and seniors the opportunity to earn college credits while completing high school. Further information about the Advanced Credit Program may be obtained online or by calling 314-516-7005.

Dual High School/University Enrollment
Superior high school students may be admitted in a special student category to take one or more university courses on campus during their junior or senior years of high school or during the summers. Students must submit a dual enrollment application and a recommendation from the counselor or principal. Students are admitted on the evidence of academic excellence. Admission is limited and governed by available space, and students must meet the  prerequisites for the course or courses selected. After reviewing the Dual Enrollment website, students or counselors may contact the College of Arts and Sciences at 314-516-5501 for more information.

College Level Examination Program
Applicants may earn advanced credit through the College Level Examination Program (CLEP).  CLEP offers subject examinations for credit in specific areas. These examinations can be taken any time, provided the student has not taken a college credit course in the test area. Consultation with a UMSL advisor is highly recommended before taking an exam.  CLEP tests are given in the Campus Testing Center by appointment only.  Contact the Campus Testing Center at 314-516-6396, in person in 412 SSB, or through their website

Credit for Military Service
Credit may be allowed for service training programs conducted by the various Armed Forces branches. The American Council of Education’s recommendations in A Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services generally serve as a basis for granting such credit. To count toward a degree, the credit granted must be appropriate to the student's curriculum.

Probationary Admission
It may be possible for applicants who do not meet the regular admission standards to be admitted on a trial basis. Applicants who do not meet minimum admission requirements can submit a letter of appeal to request probationary admission. The Admission Committee reviews each letter of appeal and makes decisions on a case-by-case basis.

High School Equivalency Applicants
Individuals may seek admission on the basis of passing the General Education Development (GED) test with a minimum score of 2500 (for tests taken after January 1, 2002; minimum score of 250 required for tests taken prior to January 1, 2002).

In addition, the following must be submitted:

Home-Schooled Students
UMSL welcomes home-schooled students. To be admitted for undergraduate admission, home-schooled applicants must present the following:

Veterans and Mature Adults
 Applicants may be admitted as degree or non-degree-seeking students if they are veterans of military service or over age 21 and have not previously earned college credit, have not been in school for several years, have not earned a high school diploma or passed the GED; or if they have a diploma but do not meet regular admission requirements from high school. Non-degree-seeking students can become degree candidates on the basis of their performance in university course work.

Admission Information for Prospective Students With Prior College Credit

UMSL values transfer students, defined as a student transferring from another college or university with at least 24 earned semester hours of college-level work.

A transferring student who has completed fewer than 24 hours must apply under the procedures for admission to the freshman class with the additional requirement that they submit official transcripts from all college-level courses attempted at previous institutions that document at least a 2.0 overall grade point average (4.0 system).

Students transferring from other colleges and universities with at least 24 hours must submit the following information:

All credentials submitted for admission become the property of the university.

Suspended and Dismissed Transfer Students
Students under suspension or dismissal from another institution or whose previous record is of unsatisfactory quality may apply but will need to appeal to the Faculty Senate Committee on Admissions and Financial Aid to be admitted to UMSL.

Missouri State Transfer Agreement.
Although transfer students should be aware that requirements for degrees vary from institution to institution so some transferred credits may not apply to UMSL programs, UMSL has attempted to minimize the loss of credits by adhering to the Missouri Coordinating Board of Higher Education (CBHE) Articulation Agreement. The agreement outlines statewide undergraduate general education requirements that satisfy the general requirements for students transferring into UMSL and students transferring out of UMSL to other public universities in the state.

UMSL requires mathematics and writing proficiency beyond the general requirements in the CBHE Statement.  Please refer to the General Education requirements for details.

Transfer Credit
The articulation agreement among public institutions within the state of Missouri governs transfer of credit to UMSL from colleges and universities within the state of Missouri. These guidelines also apply to students transferring to UMSL from schools located outside Missouri. Advanced standing in the form of credit hours may be allowed for work satisfactorily completed in another public or private college or university of recognized standing located in the state of Missouri, as long as the work satisfies the requirements of the student's major.

The transcript at each institution includes all courses attempted. Grades of D or better earned in college-level work at an accredited or approved institution of higher education should receive full credit when transferred to UMSL. The university, however, will treat all grades on courses attempted on the same basis as that of a UMSL student. For example, if a program requires a UMSL student to repeat a specified course having earned a D grade, a transfer student will also be required to repeat the same course if it carries a D grade.

To maximize transfer credits from community colleges, UMSL has transfer guides and articulation agreements with area colleges. Should community college students have any question about the transferability of courses not in the articulation agreement, they should contact the appropriate Transfer Coordinator, preferably prior to taking a course.

Advanced Standing
Advanced standing includes credit by examination, examination that may or may not appear on a transfer student’s transcripts, including College Board Advanced Placement (AP), the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), and Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES). It also includes credit by portfolio review (Bachelor of Fine Arts only). These lower-division credits may not apply at the senior level. For examination credit, students should submit appropriate verification documents to the Office of Admissions before their first semester at UMSL. Students interested in the portfolio review should contact the Art and Art History Department. Early attention to these matters is essential to avoid unnecessary course work or repeats that can lead to loss of credit. If examinations are completed at a later date, verification documents should be submitted as soon as they are available.

Shortly after all official transcripts and other verifications are on file, students' previous academic records are evaluated to determine which courses are applicable, and students receive a written report of the results. Degree checks determining whether courses meet a specific degree requirement and whether courses are accepted as a part of the student's academic major are made in the office of the appropriate dean or advisor. Should there be any question concerning applicability of any courses, students should discuss this with that advisor.

Associate Degree Transfers from Community Colleges
A student admitted to the university and holding an associate degree applicable toward the baccalaureate degree will be accepted in junior standing. Students fulfilling the general education requirements outlined by the Missouri Coordinating Board of Higher Education and certified by the sending institution will have met the lower division general education requirements at UMSL.  Students with AA degrees from Missouri that include a CBHE approved general education core may transfer more than 64 credit hours for lower division courses.  Any additional lower division course credits above 64 credit hours must be applicable to the baccalaureate degree or must be a prerequisite for an upper division course in the major.  However, this does not exempt the student from meeting specialized lower-division degree requirements of specific departments. Courses completed in the associate degree program are evaluated for application to specific degree requirements by the same criteria used for transfer students from other colleges and universities.

Transfers Without an Associate Degree
Transfer applicants who do not have an associate degree will have their transcripts evaluated on a course-by-course basis and will be allowed to transfer a maximum of 60 credit hours from two year institutions. Students who have fulfilled the general education requirements outlined by CBHE and certified by the sending institution will meet UMSL's general education requirements.

Transfers Within the University of Missouri System.
A student not in good standing at another campus of the University of Missouri (suspended or dismissed) must submit an appeal to the Senate Committee on Admissions and Student Financial Aid to be admitted to UMSL.

Any course that leads to an undergraduate degree on any campus of the University of Missouri shall be accepted in transfer toward the same degree on any campus of the university offering that degree. Grades, including D and F grades, and honor points earned in such courses will also transfer and will be included in the cumulative grade point averages.  Unresolved problems related to transferability of credit may be appealed to the office of the appropriate dean.

Students within the last 30 hours of graduation may take a limited number of courses at another campus in the UM system, provided the last 15 hours are taken at UMSL and the work is approved by their respective dean and department.

Midwest Student Exchange
The Midwest Student Exchange Program is an initiative designed by the Midwestern Higher Education Commission to increase interstate educational opportunities for students in its member states. The program enables residents of Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Wisconsin to enroll in the institutions and specified programs located outside their home state at reduced tuition levels. Contact Admissions for more information.

Students from Other Countries
Prospective students living outside the United States and its possessions should contact the Office of International Student and Scholar Services (below) at least one year before the date of desired admission for information about application to the university.  Applicants will be expected to supply official original secondary and college/university transcripts from all schools attended as well as other official original documents.  International students must also pay a $40 application fee.  All students should make arrangements to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) well in advance of their admission date. 

Since 1998, all students in F-1 and J-1 status have been required to purchase an inexpensive insurance policy with coverage for illness and accidents, billed to the student’s UMSL account.  For details contact:

Office of International Student and Scholar Services
261 Student Millennium Center
One University Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63121-4400
Phone: 314-516-5229
Email: iss@umsl.edu
Or visit the Office of International Students website

Returning UMSL Students

Returning undergraduate students who are admitted and/or enrolled will be automatically eligible to register without having to reapply for the period of one academic year. Students who do not attend for two semesters will be required to complete a returning student application and provide official transcripts from other colleges and universities attended since last enrolled as a UMSL student.

The returning student application is available on line or by calling the Office of Admissions at 314-516-5451.

Admission for Students Not Seeking a UMSL Degree

Visiting Students
A visiting student is one who has completed at least one semester at another institution and plans to return to that college or university after attending UMSL.  To qualify as a visiting student, applicants must be an actively enrolled student at another college or university.  Visiting student applications are available on line. Transcripts are not required for visiting students.  At the end of the session, students must request that their grades be reported by transcript to their respective schools. Financial aid is not available for visiting students.

Non-Degree-Seeking Students

A non-degree-seeking student is someone interested in taking classes but not wanting a degree from UMSL. Often these are students who have degrees but want to take additional undergraduate classes for personal or professional development. To become a non-degree-seeking student, applicants complete the application for admission and mark "non-degree-seeking." No transcripts are required; however, the admission applies only for that particular semester. To attend for another semester, the student must reapply. The non-degree application is available on-line, in person at 351 Millennium Student Center, or by calling 314-516-5451.  Financial aid is not available for non-degree seeking students.

UMSL Express
UMSL Express provides Missouri’s senior citizens (65 and older) easy access to undergraduate courses without limit on an audit (not for credit) space-available basis.  Graduate courses are not available through this program.  Students are subject to:  non-refundable $25 registration fee, a parking fee, and course-related fees.  Former UMSL Express students who reapply for the program must again pay the registration fee.  UMSL Express applicants may obtain a registration form on-line, in person at 351 Millennium Student Center, or by calling 314-516-5451.  Students should complete and return the form with proof of age to the Office of Admissions on the day before classes are scheduled to begin.