Beyond the Application: Additional Admissions Requirements

About this article
An application is not the only piece of information required by colleges and universities. This article provides information about the other requirements colleges and universities request from applicants.
View available schools

Along with an application, many colleges and universities may need you to submit some or all of the following materials:

  • Admission Test Scores (ACT/SAT)
  • Audition/Portfolio (Often needed if applying to a fine arts/art program)
  • High School Transcripts
  • Interview
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Personal Statement/Essay

Admission Test Scores

Admission test scores are often requested because they help determine a student's academic capability, especially at college-level work. They often involve national testing companies such as the College Board. Depending upon the college, you may have the option to take either the ACT or SATs (SAT I and SAT II), which are given many times during the year. You should always check to make sure you can register to take the test before your application deadline, though.

Audition/Portfolio

Auditions and/or portfolios are often necessary if you're applying for a program in the arts, music, or design. This will involve documenting prior work by way of an on-campus audition or by submitting slides, a tape or other work sample to demonstrate your ability. This type of specialization is usually not handled through the admissions office. Check with the department or school that you are applying to for additional guidelines and restrictions.

High School Transcript

Your high school transcript is either filled out by an official of your high school or an official copy is sent from your high school to the college you are applying to. If your college requires a written form, you need to give this to your guidance counselor so it can be completed as early as possible. Even if your high school simply sends an official copy to the college you are applying, inquire about the length of processing and delivery time. Plan ahead, so you won't be scrambling last minute to meet the deadlines.

Interview

Interviews are usually not required by most colleges or universities. Still, an interview will give you the chance to make a connection with someone who participates in the admission process, so it's always a good idea to arrange one if possible. If you're too far away for an on-campus interview, you could possibly meet with an alumnus in your community.

Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation are required by many private colleges. These colleges will ask you to submit at least one letter of recommendation from a counselor, teacher or other adult who knows you well. When asking for a letter recommendation, you need to give the letter writer two weeks or even more to complete it. Show them you are respectful to their time constraints. They may also ask for additional information, so they can write a well-prepared letter.

Personal Statement/Essay

A personal statement or essay is an important part of your college application as it lets the admissions board get to know you better. Often, the college will provide a specific theme or question. However, some colleges may give you a general question about your academic or personal life. This essay should be taken seriously. When writing the paper, try to be honest and express your individuality. Try not second-guess what you think they might want to hear. If you need additional help, ask a teacher or guidance counselor for advice.

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. George Mason University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Applied Behavior Analysis
      • Master of Health Administration in Health Systems Management
      • Master of Science in Health Informatics
      • Master of Business Administration
      • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Online Programs Available
    2. Georgetown University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Professional Studies in Sports Industry Management
      • Master of Science in Finance
      • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management
      • Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate
  • Online Programs Available
    3. Purdue University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Science in Communication
      • Master of Science in Education in Special Education
      • Master of Science in Engineering Technology
      • Master of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management
      • Master of Public Health
      • Master of Science in Education in Learning Design and Technology
  • Online Programs Available
    4. Saint John's University

    Program Options

    Doctorate
      • Ph.D. in Literacy
      • Ph.D. in Literacy: Educational Leadership
      • Ph.D. in Literacy: Special Education
      • Ph.D. in Literacy: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
      • Ph.D in Literacy: Literacy
    Master's
      • Master of Business Administration: Interdisciplinary Business
      • Master of Business Administration: Taxation
      • Master of Science in Accounting
      • Master of Science in Taxation
      • Master of Science in Library and Information Science
      • Master of Science in Library and Information Science: Academic Librarianship
  • Online Programs Available
    5. American University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication
      • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication - Advocacy and Social Impact Concentration
      • Master of Arts in Economics
      • Master of Public Administration and Policy
      • Master of Science in Agile Project Management
      • Master of Science in Healthcare Management
  • Online Programs Available
    6. Kaplan University

    Program Options

    Doctorate
      • Master of Science - DNP Executive Leader
      • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
      • Master of Science - DNP Path (Doctor of Nursing Practice)
    Master's
      • Master: Legal Studies
      • MS in Psychology
      • Master : Business Admin
      • Master: Psychology/General Psychology
      • MSPY - Industrial/Organizational Psychology Specialization
      • Master of Public Health
    Bachelor's
      • Undergraduate in Legal Studies
      • Bachelor: Liberal Studies
      • Bachelor of Business Admin
      • BSBA - Investment
      • BS in Liberal Studies Leadership
      • Bachelor: Nutrition Science
    Associate's
      • AASBA in Business
      • AAS in Legal Support and Services
      • Associate: Business Admin.
      • Associate: Business Admin. - Office Mgmt
      • Associate: Criminal Justice
      • Associate: Accounting
    Certificate
      • Psychology
      • Medical Assisting Certificate
      • Certificate in Human Services
      • Medical Office Administration Certificate
      • Human Services Certificates in Child and Family Services
      • Postbaccalaureate Certificate - Pathway to Paralegal
  • Online Programs Available
    7. Baker College Online

    Program Options

    Doctorate
      • Business Administration - DBA (Doctorate)
    Master's
      • General Business (MBA)
      • Human Resource Management - MBA
      • Information Systems - MBA (Master's)
      • Accounting - MBA (Master's)
      • Finance - MBA (Master's)
      • Information Systems - MSIS (Master's)
    Bachelor's
      • Criminal Justice - Bachelor
      • Psychology - Bachelor
      • Business Administration - Accelerated Program - Bachelor
      • Accounting - Bachelor
      • Finance - Bachelor
      • Law Enforcement Academy (Police) - Bachelor
    Associate's
      • Business Administration - Associate
      • Accounting - Associate
      • Information Technology - Associate
  • Online Programs Available
    8. Johns Hopkins University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Arts in Communication
      • Master of Liberal Arts
      • Master of Arts in Science Writing
      • Master of Science in Applied Economics
      • Master of Science in Geographic Information Systems
      • Master of Science in Bioinformatics
    Certificate
      • Post-Master's Certificate in Sequence Analysis and Genomics
      • Post-Bachelor's Certificate in Biotechnology Enterprise
  • Online Programs Available
    9. Post University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • B.S. in Business Administration
      • B.S. in Legal Studies
      • B.S. in Business Administration / Accounting
      • B.S. in Finance
      • B.S. in Management / Entrepreneurship
      • B.S. in Management / International Management
    Associate's
      • A.S. in Criminal Justice
      • A.S. in Legal Studies
      • A.S. in Management
      • A.S. in Accounting
      • A.S. in Marketing
    Certificate
      • Certificate: Paralegal (Legal Studies)
      • Certificate: H.R. Management
  • Online Programs Available
    10. Colorado State University Global

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Project Management
      • Master of Finance
      • Master of Professional Accounting
      • Master - Information Technology Management
      • Graduate Specialization - Healthcare Administration
      • Master - Human Resource Management
    Bachelor's
      • BS - Communication
      • BS - Human Services
      • BS - Accounting
      • BS - Project Management
      • BS - Marketing
      • Undergraduate Specialization - Criminal Forensics
    Certificate
      • Graduate Certificate - Human Resource Management
      • Undergraduate Certificate - Project Management
      • Graduate Specialization - Accounting
      • Graduate Certificate - Cyber Security

Featured Schools

George Mason University

  • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Master of Health Administration in Health Systems Management
  • Master of Science in Health Informatics

What is your highest level of education?

Georgetown University

  • Master of Professional Studies in Sports Industry Management
  • Master of Science in Finance
  • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management

What is your highest level of education completed?

Purdue University

  • Master of Science in Communication
  • Master of Science in Education in Special Education
  • Master of Science in Engineering Technology

What is your highest level of education?

Saint John's University

  • Ph.D. in Literacy
  • Ph.D. in Literacy: Educational Leadership
  • Master of Business Administration: Interdisciplinary Business
  • Master of Business Administration: Taxation

What is your highest level of education?

American University

  • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication
  • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication - Advocacy and Social Impact Concentration
  • Master of Arts in Economics

What is your highest level of education?

Kaplan University

  • Master of Science - DNP Executive Leader
  • Master: Legal Studies
  • Undergraduate in Legal Studies
  • AASBA in Business
  • Psychology

Which subject are you interested in?

Baker College Online

  • Business Administration - DBA (Doctorate)
  • General Business (MBA)
  • Criminal Justice - Bachelor
  • Business Administration - Associate

What is your highest level of education?

Johns Hopkins University

  • Master of Arts in Communication
  • Master of Liberal Arts
  • Post-Master's Certificate in Sequence Analysis and Genomics
  • Post-Bachelor's Certificate in Biotechnology Enterprise

What is your highest level of education?