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Tulane University welcomes applications from students of good character, intelligence, motivation, and achievement. Through its Admission Committee, Tulane selects those students who will succeed academically and enrich the educational experience of their fellow students. An ability to contribute constructively to campus life outside the classroom and through public service in the larger community is valued as well. Diversity among its students is a necessary component of an outstanding educational experience at Tulane University.

Application Procedures

All applicants for admission as full-time students must submit a completed application form, a secondary school transcript, a letter of recommendation, and official results of either the SAT or ACT examination with writing sample. Applicants must also submit a personal statement.

Transfer students also must submit official transcripts from all colleges they have attended and a statement of good standing from the last institution attended. Individuals may apply for undergraduate admission under the provisions of either Early Action (by Nov. 1) or Regular Decision (by Jan. 15).

Students applying for a Dean’s Honor Scholarship are required to submit their admission and scholarship applications by December 15.

Applicants are informed of the admission decision no later than April 1. Notification of the decision is sent as soon as possible after the file is complete. Individuals interested in applying for admission may do so by completing Tulane’s online application or use the Common Application (available online and in secondary school guidance offices).

The deadlines for applying for admission as an undergraduate student vary by the semester for which the applicant seeks admission, the admission option selected, and the type of admission sought (e.g. as a freshman or as a transfer student.) The table following summarizes the deadline dates.

Freshman Applicants

  Early Action November 1
  Regular Decision January 15

Transfer Applicants

  Fall June 1
  Spring November 1

Early Action Admission Option

Students who wish to complete the admission process early in their senior year may apply through the non-binding Early Action admission option. Applicants must submit all application material and supporting credentials by November 1, and will be informed of the admission decision by December 15. Students who are offered admission under the Early Action Plan may apply to other institutions and will have until May 1 to respond to Tulane’s offer of admission.

Criteria for Admission

For Those Seeking Admission Directly From Secondary School

The Committee on Admission seeks students who have had strong high school preparation. Using a holistic assessment strategy, the committee carefully reviews each applicant’s secondary school record examining grades earned, the rigor of coursework completed (i.e. Honors, Advanced Placement, etc.), and class rank. The committee is interested in evidence of a student’s intellectual ability as demonstrated by a strong performance in a rigorous curriculum of traditional college preparatory subjects. The committee supplements its evaluation of the secondary school record with recommendations from the secondary school principal, headmaster, or guidance counselor.

The recommended secondary school program for those seeking admission to Tulane University is shown following.

Subject: English Years of study: 4 years
Comment: Extensive focus on reading and writing
Subject: Mathematics Years of study: 4 years
Comment: College preparatory mathematics. For students majoring in the sciences, engineering, and business pre-calculus and calculus are recommended
Subject: Foreign Language Years of study: 2-3 years
Comment: Classical or modern foreign language
Subject: Laboratory Science Years of study: 3-4 years
Comment: Chemistry and physics are recommended for students majoring in the sciences or engineering
Subject: Social Studies Years of study: 3 years
Comment: With an emphasis on history
Subject: Electives Years of study: 2-3 years/courses
Comment: Focus on academic electives

While a student’s academic record is the most important criterion for admission, the committee can make a more thorough evaluation of a prospective student by also considering other important indicators of the individual’s ability. Applicants for admission must present either the SAT or ACT, including the writing component. Although not required for admission, applicants are may submit scores from any of the College Board SAT II Subject Tests. The results are sometimes used to determine a student’s placement level in a particular subject area.

The admission committee also considers a number of other factors, including the applicant’s record of extracurricular and co-curricular activities that indicate that the applicant will enhance the diversity of perspectives and opinions on important matters in and out of class.

Home-schooled Students

Home-schooled students seeking admission to Tulane University should submit the following: 1.) a completed application for admission, 2.) four SAT II test scores (English, science, math, foreign language), and 3.) a comprehensive explanation of their curriculum. This explanation must include citations of books used in coursework, accreditation of the home-schooled program, and thorough descriptions of classes taken.

International Students

Tulane University welcomes international students. Students from other countries, who have successfully completed a rigorous, university preparatory program in high school, and have a strong command of English, are encouraged to apply. The application for admission can be found on the university web site.

In addition to submitting complete, translated, notarized credentials of all secondary school and university work completed by the applicant, international students applying as first-year students are required to take the SAT I or ACT examination. These tests should be taken in time to allow the results to be sent to the admission office no later than February 15. Applicants whose native language is not English also must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Students may submit the IELTS examination in place of the TOEFL.

International students also must submit a certified financial statement indicating that sufficient funds are available for all of their college expenses. We will not review an application without this Certificate of Finance. Tulane does offer financial assistance to a maximum amount of $15,000 a year.

Like other students, international students are required to maintain acceptable standards of English in all their work. Academic, governmental, and personal counseling is available to students from other countries through the Center for International Students and Scholars.

Students Transferring From Other Institutions

A student who has satisfactorily completed some work at another accredited college or university after high school graduation (excluding summer school) may be admitted to Tulane University as a transfer student, with credit toward degree awarded for relevant college-level work done elsewhere. Tulane University recommends that transfer applicants present a cumulative grade point average of approximately 3.0 (B average) in all college-level coursework with greater strength in coursework closely related to the intended field of study. While coursework in technical areas is considered, the Committee on Admission looks for A’s and B’s in coursework that is challenging and academic in nature, including English composition, mathematics, liberal arts, and sciences. Students applying for transfer to Tulane must meet the same standards for admission required of freshmen, which includes satisfactory scores on either the SAT or ACT. All parts of the application, including transcripts from high school and each college attended, should be received by the following deadlines: June 1 for the fall semester, November 1 for the spring semester. All transfer applicants must be in good standing at the colleges attended and eligible to continue or reenter these colleges at any time. Transfer applicants are requested to send a course catalog or photocopies of course descriptions for all college courses they have taken.

The divisions grant transfer credit only for courses completed at regionally accredited institutions and which are applicable toward the degree sought in the division. (See divisional sections for further information.) A candidate for a degree must complete a minimum of 60 credits at Tulane University. The maximum value or amount of acceptable credit shown on the official transcript from the institution(s) previously attended is the maximum transferable amount. Tulane University utilizes a semester-hour system and all transferable credits will be evaluated on a semester-hour basis. For example, a transferable three semester-hour course will be accepted as three credits, a transferable four quarter-hour course will be accepted as 2.67 credits. (See divisional sections for further information.)

If, at the time of application the student is enrolled in another institution and is acceptable for admission, acceptance is tentative until an official transcript is presented showing successful completion of courses the student was taking at the time of application as well as all courses attempted and completed previously. Graduates in liberal arts curricula of accredited junior colleges who wish to transfer to Tulane University to complete a bachelor’s degree are encouraged to apply.

Correspondence and CLEP (College Level Examination Program) credits are not accepted as credit toward degree. Credits and advanced placement granted by other institutions are not acceptable unless the official College Board AP or Foreign Language SAT II Test scores are validated. Credit and placement will be awarded as recommended by the appropriate Tulane academic departments. Transfer credits are not included in the computation of Tulane University grade point averages. Tulane-sponsored programs such as semester or year-long Study Abroad, Washington Semester, and geology field camps award Tulane credit, not transfer credit.

Transfer students should arrange for the Office of Undergraduate Admission to receive transcripts and course descriptions for courses in progress at the time of application well in advance of the beginning of classes to allow a timely evaluation of credits. Transcripts that arrive late may result in students repeating courses for which they already have earned acceptable credits. In such cases, the Tulane credit is disallowed when the transcript shows completion of the equivalent transferable course.

Advanced Standing for Freshman Applicants

Advanced Placement

The university offers advanced placement or credit toward degree to entering first-year students demonstrating superior training and ability by earning high scores on the College Board Advanced Placement (AP) Tests. The individual academic departments determine the placement or credit in each subject area. Departments usually award a minimum of three credits for scores of “4” or better and may award advanced standing in the subject area for a score of “3.” A list of approved credit and placement for AP subject areas can be obtained from the Office of Undergraduate Admission.

International Baccalaureate

Tulane will award credit toward degree or advanced placement for IB scores of “5” or greater on a higher-level test. No credit or placement will be awarded for the subsidiary tests. Academic departments make the final decisions regarding credit awarded toward degree requirements.

Financial Assistance for New Students

Need-Based Financial Aid

Tulane University administers a need-based financial aid program to assist the families of qualified applicants who, because of resource limitations, would not be able to attend Tulane University. To be considered for need-based financial aid, students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) with the federal processor and the College Scholarship Service Profile form. (Please refer to the Financial Aid section for details regard policies regarding applying for need-based financial aid.)

Merit Scholarships

Each year Tulane University recognizes a number of applicants for first-year admission as outstanding scholars and awards a variety of merit-based scholarships to these individuals, including full-tuition scholarships. All scholarships are awarded on a competitive basis and students are notified about financial aid at the time of admission.

Special Admission Categories

Admission as a Special Student

Students who must pursue college work part-time and those students interested in non-degree status are encouraged to seek admission to the School of Continuing Studies. (See the School of Continuing Studies section for details.)

Those already holding a baccalaureate degree may be admitted as special students on a part-time basis for the purpose of pursuing an additional degree and are governed by curricular regulations in effect at the time of their readmission. Graduates who want only additional coursework (i.e., not seeking a second degree) should apply to the School of Continuing Studies.

Admission as a Guest Student

Sophomores and juniors in good standing at other accredited institutions may enroll full-time for one or two semesters in the undergraduate divisions of Tulane University as guest students. These students must have the approval of their deans at their home schools and are subject to the regulations for special students. Guest students wishing to change their status to degree-seeking must have their academic records re-evaluated prior to admission to the university.

Readmission to Tulane University

Students Returning to Tulane after an Absence

A student whose studies have been interrupted without the benefit of an authorized leave of absence must file a readmission application with the Newcomb-Tulane College dean’s office at least four weeks prior to the date of the desired reenrollment.

If the student has attended another regionally accredited institution while away from Tulane, a statement of good standing and an official transcript showing all college or university coursework attempted or in progress during the absence must accompany the application for readmission. Transfer credit for such coursework is subject to approval by the appropriate Tulane departments. Credit earned at 2-year colleges will not be accepted for transfer once a student has matriculated at Tulane. Students who voluntarily left Tulane and are readmitted within one year will return under the degree requirements in effect for them at the time of their departure. Readmitted students who involuntarily left the university or are readmitted after having been away more than one year are subject to the curricular requirements in effect at the time of readmission. All readmitted students must complete the last 30 credits for the degree while in residence in the division. They may not participate in priority registration and will not receive registration materials until after their readmission has been processed.

Students Returning to Tulane after an Absence Caused by a Medical Condition

Students whose enrollment is interrupted by a medical withdrawal may be required to receive medical clearance from a physician at the Student Health Center before they can register for a subsequent semester.