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Freshman Admissions Criteria

The University at Buffalo welcomes international first-year students (freshmen) who are prepared to take advantage of the opportunities offered by a top-quality public research university.

Am I a freshman or a transfer applicant?

Freshman or transfer status has a strict definition which is based upon the facts of your educational background.

What is a freshman?

  • You have never studied or enrolled in any college / university or postsecondary studies after completing secondary school.
  • You are a freshman even if you have “advanced standing” for which you may receive university credits. This includes A Levels, International Baccalaureate (IB) and Advanced Placement (AP).

What is a transfer?

  • You have completed secondary school and you subsequently enrolled or studied one or more subjects in a college or university.
  • You may or may not have passed the class(es); you may or may not have earned university credit for the class(es); you may or may not have changed your major or stopped studying because you did not like your major.
  • If you engaged in any study in a college or university, you must apply as a transfer applicant; you cannot “choose” to be a freshman.

Still not sure if you are a freshman or transfer? Take this test.

If a minimum of one item in statement 1 and all of statement 2 is true, then you are a freshman applicant. Otherwise you are a transfer applicant.

 

STATEMENT 1:   A minimum of one item must be true.

A.  I am currently studying in high school (secondary school).

B.  Even though I am not in high school, I am studying a secondary school curriculum.

C.  I have completed high school.

 

AND

 

STATEMENT 2:   This statement must also be true.

I have never enrolled in or studied at a postsecondary institution after completing secondary school.

 

Both are true?  You will apply as a Freshman.

Any part not true?  You will apply as a Transfer.

What is required for freshman admission?

  • Admission to the freshman class at the University at Buffalo is based on more than just your grades. We perform a holistic review of your application that considers your academic marks, test scores, essay and recommendations.
  • We are looking for students who excel academically, engage in extracurricular activities, and maintain a good school-life balance.

What do the admissions counselors consider?

  1. Secondary school academic performance (transcripts, mark sheets, grade point average, board exam results).
  2. Standardized test scores (SAT/ACT)
  3. English language proficiency
  4. Beyond your grades and test scores, we want to learn more about you as an individual. That is why we ask you to submit a personal essay. The essay topic will be determined by the application method that you choose. The SUNY, Common and UB International applications all have specific topics for you to write about.
  5. In addition, you must submit 1-2 teacher recommendations written by teachers who are familiar with your academic work. You can also ask for recommendations from staff at your school, or from people in your community who are familiar with your work outside the classroom.