Regular decision application questions

In order for students to apply regular decision, we're looking for a completed Common Application, high school transcripts (9-12 grade), two essays and a letter of recommendation submitted by January 15.

How to apply

You can definitely have your counselors submit your predicted grade card. We can give it consideration during application review!

We require one letter of recommendation but will accept up to three.

We require TOEFL or IELTS scores as proof of English proficiency, unless you've spent 2 or more years at a U.S. high school. We do not need to receive your proof of English proficiency until after you have received your admission decision.

We require a 75 TOEFL with a 19 writing subscore for all majors except those in our College of Engineering & Applied Science, which requires an 83 and 19 writing subscore. If submitting IELTS scores, for all majors we require a 6.5 total with a 5.5 writing subscore.

English proficiency requirements

We don't have a specific minimum score as part of our holistic review process. We'll be looking at your scores as well as the course selection, course rigor, your essays and letters of recommendation. We'd love to see 5s, 6s and 7s across your subjects.

We can also provide course credit for IB and AP courses.

Credit for course work or exams

Applicants do not need to provide any conversions. We have evaluators and readers who recognize your school system and the different grading scales within countries. However, if your transcript is in your native language, we will require an English translation of your transcript as well.

Transcript requirements

We review each application on an individual basis and there is no quota for students we admit from a specific high school.

Academic history is at the core of our review process, but we will take into consideration information about extracurricular involvement and leadership to complement your overall application.

Selection process

Since we conduct a holistic review, we look at the opportunities available to students where they are located, so we do not hold it against students if the opportunities or programs are not available in your area.

We practice a holistic review process in which we take into consideration your overall academic profile as well as secondary factors. We will certainly take into consideration any life circumstances or experiences when reviewing your overall application, if you have included this information in your essays or additional information section on the Common App.

We do not require SAT or ACT scores from non-US citizens (unless you are graduating from a US high school). If you submit these scores, you will automatically be considered for our merit-based scholarships. Check out the scholarship types and requirements here:

CU Boulder Chancellor's Achievement Scholarship

Presidential Scholarship

Make sure that you have at least one score submitted by our January 15 deadline for You will have until May 1 to submit any other test scores for reconsideration.

We look at both high school grades and your test scores for scholarship consideration. We don't consider TOEFL or IELTS for an admission decision or scholarships (only to meet proof of English proficiency in order to issue your I-20 for your visa). The overall requirements for scholarships varies slightly each year because it's based on the top 25% or 1-3% of all students, so it will depend on the overall applicant pool, your overall high school grades and your test scores.

The Chancellor's and Presidential Scholarships are for out-of-state (including international) students. We award the top 25% of students a $25,000 scholarship divided across four years of attendance. For the top 1-3% of students, we award a $55,000 scholarship divided across four years of attendance. We recommend looking at our scholarship website for more specific information on qualifications for these scholarships. We also have a scholarship database and link posted on that webpage for additional scholarship options. We recommend checking with the EducationUSA office in your region as well who can often connect you with funding ideas.


We have a robust onboarding program for our international students, including a great international orientation week where there are social events for you to get to know other students, and you get to know the campus and the city of Boulder as well! There is also a program called International Student Guides which you can opt in for, and be matched with a current student for the first few weeks who will help you navigate the start of your semester.

Once you're settled in, there is also a Student Involvement week where you learn about all the different student clubs and organizations and you can joins as many as you can manage with your class schedule.

After a student is admitted and confirms their intent to enroll, they can then access and submit a Residence Hall Student Application. Housing and Dining Services will work with you to find the right place.

Housing process

Once we have reviewed your application and a decision has been made, you will receive an email stating that your status has changed on your application status page. You will need to log in to your application status page to read your decision.

For students who have been admitted and have chosen to come to CU Boulder, we use DHL to ship the acceptance letter and I-20. You can track your package from start to finish through DHL. We ship both documents several business days after you confirm your intent to enroll.

If you have any further questions please visit our find your counselor page or email us at

Find your counselor