International Application Review

We appreciate the unique insights international students bring to our campus. Whether you are a freshman or transfer applicant, your academic achievement is the best indicator of your future success at NC State. We take this into consideration with the many additional factors listed below in no particular order.

What We Look For

Your academic achievement

Freshman Applicants

We are looking for strong grades and competitive courses beginning your first year of high school. We’ll consider your courses in-progress as well, so finish out strong. Schools offer a variety of curricula so we don’t require specific courses. We encourage you to take challenging courses your school may offer that prove your ability for future success. If offered we recommend taking AP, IB, and A or AS-level courses. Strong grades in these courses will not only strengthen your academic record but you may also receive course credit for them at NC State.

Transfer Applicants

We recommend you have a minimum of 30 transferable college semester credit hours (or 45 quarter hours) before you apply to NC State. We will consider courses in progress as long as they are complete by June 1. If you are transferring from a U.S. institution, you should review our recommendations for competitive applicants. You must be eligible to return to each institution you have previously attended.

We are unable to determine how many of your credits will transfer to NC State when you apply. If you are admitted, and once you decide to attend, your department will then determine how many of your non-U.S. university credits will transfer toward your degree.

Your financial ability

If you require an F-1 or J-1 student visa to study in the U.S. you must prove your ability to cover the estimated school expenses by completing the Certificate of Financial Responsibility.

Your level of English language skills

If you are not from a country where English is the official or commonly spoken language then you need to provide proof of your English language skills by meeting one of the requirements. If you do not meet the minimum scores required for full admission or meet the minimum requirements but do not meet the minimum sub-section requirements you may be considered for conditional admission through the NC State Intensive English Program.


We will accept the Duolingo English Test (DET) to complete applications for Fall 2020. A minimum score of 110 on the current DET scale or 60 on the DET scoring scale prior to July 15, 2019) is necessary for full admission to NC State. To be considered for conditional admission, a minimum score of 85 on the current DET scale (or 28 on the DET scoring scale prior to July 15, 2019) is required. Your score must be reported directly to NC State Undergraduate Admissions from the testing agency.

Not required if you are a national of one of these countries

Australia, Bahamas, Belize, Canada (except Quebec), Dominica, Ghana, Grenada, Cayman Islands, Guyana, Ireland, Jamaica, Liberia, New Zealand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, United Kingdom

English proficiency can be demonstrated by meeting these requirements. Official TOEFL, IELTS Academic and PTE Academic test scores should be sent directly from the testing agency.

Options for Meeting Requirements Scores Required for Full Undergraduate Admission Scores Required for Conditional Admission
TOEFL IBT (code: 5496)
*electronic submission only
85 or higher (minimum of 18 in each sub score) 50 or higher
TOEFL Paper Based (code: 5496)
*electronic submission only
563 or higher 500 or higher
IELTS Academic
*electronic submission only
6.5 or higher (minimum of 6.5 in each sub score) 5.5 or higher
PTE Academic 62 or higher (minimum of 53 in each sub score) 45 or higher
Intensive English Program Completion of Level 6 with a grade of B or higher and meet all other exit criteria
English Composition I and II from an accredited U.S. College or University Grade of C or higher

Your interest in the program you are applying for

Let us know which academic program you are interested in and why. We look for related courses and activities you have been involved in.

Your accomplishments/involvement outside the classroom

We are interested in what you invest your time in outside the classroom, whether that may be the arts, sports, volunteering or working. This is your chance to brag about the company/organization you founded, the research you have been conducting, the first place trophy your robotics team won or other awards and honors you have received.

Your background and opportunities

We understand not every student has the same opportunities. We take into consideration the curriculum, course offerings, grading scale and activities offered at your school.

NC State is enriched through the varied knowledge and backgrounds of our students and we expect everyone to give of their talents, skills, time and effort to make NC State an environment of inclusive excellence for all.

Your individual story

We want to hear from you about distinctive experiences, skills, or successes you may have had. If you have a unique circumstance that may have affected your academic performance for a period of time or in a specific class, we encourage you to share your story.

Additional Considerations

Your interactive interview (Chinese applicants)

We strongly encourage Chinese citizens to submit a third-party unscripted interview. It gives you an opportunity to provide more information about your academic and personal background, your capabilities and potential, and your overall achievements. Contact InitialView or Vericant to set up an interview and submit it with your other materials by the application deadline.

Your SAT or ACT composite score (Freshman applicants only)

If you are completing high school outside the U.S., submitting ACT or SAT scores are optional. If you are completing high school in the U.S., you must submit ACT or SAT scores. If you have been attending high school in the U.S. for less than six months, please contact our office to determine if an English proficiency exam, such as TOEFL, is more appropriate for you. We expect ACT or SAT scores that align with your strong academic ability and encourage you to take the SAT or ACT more than once. It is important to submit all your scores, so we are able to look at your highest sub-score from each section across your test dates to create a super-score.