International Application Instructions

Admission to Northern Michigan University requires completion of the steps below and meeting the requirements as specified under the applicable applicant status (first year, transfer, etc).

Once a student is admitted, NMU will request immigration-related documentation in order to issue an I-20AB form to the student.  Northern Michigan University offers you the opportunity to receive or ship your documents through a safe, quick and dependable delivery service. If you need your documents more quickly than shipped via regular postal service, you may, at your expense, request to use an express mailing service that will allow you to receive the documents through DHL or FedEx in three to five days. For more information, please read the section about University Express Mail Services.


Four students taking a selfie in front of NMU's Wildcat Statue

1. Apply

You may apply online or by using a printed form.


Students working in the lodge

2. Submit Application Fee

Submit the non-refundable $35 application fee. Students may mail a check or money order or can pay by credit card by calling 1-800-682-9797 or 1-906-227-2650. 

3. Submit Transcripts

Admission decisions are made on official documents. Request official, original transcripts of ALL secondary and post-secondary academic work, which could include official certificates showing results of any standardized examinations taken in your home country ("O" levels, "A" levels, etc.), and have them submitted directly to the Northern Michigan University Admissions Office. Certified translations are required for any documents not originally in English. These translations must be complete, word-for-word, and in the same format as the original document. Follow these instructions for submitting secondary school documents. 

  • Note: If you have completed more than the equivalent of 12 U.S. college-level semester credits after secondary school completion, you may submit only post-secondary transcripts.
  • Note: If you select WES ICAP or ECE for your evaluation service, your transcripts will come to NMU via that agency. See below.

4. Education Credential Evaluation

Submit all non-U.S., non-Canadian* post-secondary academic records to an external agency for a credential evaluation (please submit secondary school documents following these instructions). A "Course-by-Course" report --or equivalent--must be selected. NMU uses the information on the report to help determine admissibility and any transfer of credit. (NMU will notify you if a subject analysis report is needed to determine transfer credit.)  If at the time of application to NMU, you have course work in progress at a non-U.S./non-Canadian* institution, you must also submit your additional documents for evaluation upon completion of your current study. There may be an additional fee to the agency for this. Upon receipt of the final report, NMU will review your admission status again to ensure that you meet admissions requirements.  *An evaluation of credits may be requested for some Canadian institutions' documents.

NMU accepts evaluations from these three agencies (and others may be considered if part of NACES):

  1. Education Credential Evaluators (ECE)  This service allows applicants to submit their official educational documents only once--to ECE.  NMU would then receive the verified documents from ECE along with the credential evaluation.
  2. World Education Service (WES)  Students may elect to order the WES ICAP service.  This service allows applicants to submit their official educational documents only once--to WES. NMU would then receive the verified documents from WES along with the credential evaluation.
  3. North American Educational Group (NAEG)

5. Prove English Proficiency

Non-native speakers of English must prove an adequate level of English language proficiency for admission into an academic program.  English language proficiency for admission can be demonstrated in one of the following ways:

English proficiency tests:

TOEFL - minimum score of 61 iBT/173 CBT/500 PBT
IELTS – minimum overall band score of 6.0
MELAB – minimum score of 69
ITEP – minimum score of 3.7
PTE Academic – minimum score of 50

Other ways to demonstrate proficiency:

  • Diploma from a U.S. high school (other proof may be required if courses on transcript are listed as ESL)
  • Diploma from an international school with U.S. regional accreditation (as verified by AdvancED)
  • Diploma from IB curriculum school whose medium of instruction is English (as verified by IBO World Schools). If applicant went to an IB school with two or more language of instruction, the applicant’s transcript must specify that their program was English language.
  • Diploma from high school/secondary education in a country where English is the official language. Transcript must show four years of high school English (composition and literature-based) with C or better grades. List includes:
  • Antigua & Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada (except Quebec), Dominica, Fiji, The Gambia, Ghana, Grenada, Guyana, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati, Liberia, Micronesia, Namibia, Nigeria, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, St. Lucia, St. Vincent Grenadines, St. Kitts & Nevis, Trinidad & Tobago, United Kingdom, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
  • SAT - tests prior to 2016:  Scores of 500 or higher on both Critical Reading AND Writing sections.  SAT - tests from 2016 and later: A score of 28 or higher on the SAT Writing and Language section AND a score of 560 or higher on the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section.
  • A score of 21 or better on ACT Combined English/Writing
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher in 12 or more college-level semester credit hours from a U.S. institution of higher education.  Credits must include college-level English composition and/or speech with grades of C or higher.
  • Successful completion of Level 112 in the ELS Language School

*Other proof of English proficiency may be considered on an individual basis.

Northern Michigan University also offers an English as a Second Language (ESL) Program. The program aims to help non-native English speakers gain confidence and fluency in using the English language


Northern Lights Dining Hall

Certification of Finances

Admitted students will receive instructions from the staff in International Education Services about additional documentation needed for immigration purposes.   This will include documentation of financial support.

Other Important Information

NMU Housing Policy - All single undergraduate students are required to live in the residence halls while enrolled for classes at Northern, except students who:

  • Have reached junior status (56 or more hours of college credit) prior to registration for classes, or
  • Have resided four (4) or more semesters in residence halls, or
  • Are twenty-one (21) years of age or older on or before the last official day of registration, or
  • Are residing with their parents or legal guardians within commuting distance. This housing requirement is a condition of enrollment which must be met throughout the academic year. Northern's housing contract provides a variety of meal options. Exceptions to the housing requirement must be requested in writing to the Housing and Residence Life Office, 1401 Presque Isle Avenue, Marquette, Michigan, USA 49855-5372. Your application for admission does not constitute an application for housing. Information will be sent to you after you are admitted to NMU.

Occupancy During Vacation/Break Periods - You may remain in your room during Thanksgiving and spring vacation breaks at no additional cost. Services and meals, however, are not provided during these periods. All residence halls are closed on Sunday at 9:00 a.m. after the end of the fall examination week and the day after spring commencement for summer break. Halls reopen on the Saturday before classes resume in January and August. Students planning to enroll for a summer session may secure housing in Spooner Hall for the summer and may arrange to stay in Guest Housing for a nominal charge during the winter holiday break. Students may also make their own arrangements for off-campus housing during these periods.

Health Insurance - All international students and their dependents must enroll in a health insurance plan designated for them by NMU which will provide full and continuous coverage through a U.S. based insurance company. The charge for this insurance will be added to the student's first semester billing and then will be billed each fall semester.

Academic Calendar - Fall semester classes generally begin on the last Monday in August and conclude in mid-December. Winter semester classes generally begin in mid-January and conclude in late April. Spring/Summer sessions run in varying lengths in May, June, July, and early August.

Orientation - All new international undergraduate students are required to participate in orientation. For international students, the sessions which seem to work best are the ones held 5 days prior to the start of the fall and winter semesters. You will receive information about orientation once you are admitted to NMU.

Your application will not be processed until all requested information is received by the Admissions Office.