Admission Updates for 2021 Applicants

We know COVID-19 has caused many disruptions in every part of your life, including the college admissions process. Starting early August, you can apply to NC State for spring or fall 2021 through the Common Application or the Coalition Application. To maintain our commitment to access for all students and continue to cultivate a diverse and inclusive community at NC State, we’ve made a few updates to our application process.

Learn more about what it takes to be a competitive applicant and our review process by registering for a virtual admissions information session here and reading the updates below.

Application Review

Consideration of Pass/Fail Grades

  • High School Courses – We are aware many schools have allowed the option of “Pass” or “Credit” for courses during COVID-19. Grades of “Pass” or “Credit” will not negatively impact your application review. However, “Pass” grades will not be included in your GPA calculation. Many factors of your academic performance are taken into consideration in our admission review process including your grades and course curriculum as well as your class rank and test scores, if provided. If you apply by our November 1 early action deadline, you will have the opportunity to upload your grades to your applicant portal showing your progress in your fall courses through November 15.
  • College Classes – During the semesters associated with COVID-19, NC State will honor and award credit for courses with a “pass” or “satisfactory” grade from any regionally accredited community college or university. During the application process, pass/fail grades will be reviewed but will not be calculated into your cumulative GPA, which is considered in the admission review process. If you are currently enrolled in courses for the fall term, we encourage you to submit your transcript at the end of the fall term so it reflects your most up-to-date academic performance.

Test Score Consideration in Admission Decisions

For first-year students applying for the spring 2021 or fall 2021 they will no longer be required to submit SAT or ACT scores. You will have the option to indicate on your common or coalition application if you would like your scores used in our review process. For this year, test scores will only be used to enhance your application. Not submitting scores will not adversely affect your application in any way.

Application Updates

Optional Short Answer Question Regarding COVID-19

We know your personal and academic life has been greatly impacted by the pandemic and we want to give you the opportunity to provide insight on your experience if you choose. This is an optional short answer question. If you choose not to answer this question, your application will not be negatively impacted.

School Counselors will also be given the opportunity to indicate how the school environment was impacted by COVID-19 and to explain any changes to the school grading scale or other ways students may have been impacted.

Required Short Answer Question About Diversity

To further our commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive community at NC State, we now require all applicants to respond to the following:

“NC State University is committed to building a just and inclusive community, one that does not tolerate unjust or inhumane treatment, and that denounces it, clearly and loudly. Please describe what those words mean to you and how you will contribute to a more diverse and inclusive NC State environment.”

Honors and Scholars Program Consideration (First Year Applicants Only)

NC State offers Honors and Scholars Programs to enrich the educational experience of high-achieving students. You may indicate your interest in applying for the Honors and/or Scholars Program when completing the Coalition Application or Common Application by submitting an additional essay of no more than 500 words.

  • Honors Program Prompt – One of the key components of the University Honors Program is a set of special courses called HON seminars. You can learn more about them here. These discussion-based seminars are designed to expose students to the ways multiple disciplines approach and solve problems.
    Discuss why you think courses like these are an important part of an undergraduate experience and how they would enhance your development and challenge your intellectual curiosity.
  • Scholars Program Prompt – To apply for admission to the University Scholars Program, please write an essay of no more than 500 words that responds to the question below. Part of the mission of the University Scholars Program is to offer students unique academic and enrichment programs that challenge them to be culturally-connected, informed, and engaged citizens. What does this mean to you and how does it connect to what you hope to be and who you hope to become?

Fee Waiver for Active Military Applicants

Applicants now have the opportunity to indicate on the Common Application and Coalition Application if they are active-duty military personnel to receive a fee waiver for the application fee.