Undergraduate Admission Policies 

Northern Michigan University seeks to admit students who exhibit potential to succeed in the program of their choice. Applications for admission to NMU are individually reviewed with strong emphasis given to prior academic performance at the high school or college level. Northern also has a long-standing policy of providing opportunity for students whose previous academic records may indicate gaps, but who can show other evidence of their potential for success. However, the university retains the right to exercise judgment as to the eligibility of applicants for specific courses of study.

Applicants may be admitted to the university in these ways: regular admission, conditional admission, or admission restricted to a specific program. Applicants may be asked to supply additional  information, or denied admission until the student can demonstrate potential for success at the college level. When a student is admitted, the admission is to the university, not into a particular academic degree program. Academic departments may have additional requirements for admission to specific programs. A student may be asked to agree to certain conditions as part of his or her enrollment. Applicants denied admission to the university may appeal to the Admissions Review Committee. 

NMU policy requires that admitted students must provide updated transcripts and continue to meet admission standards as they complete any additional academic work prior to enrolling at NMU. Applicants must disclose all college attendance and provide all college transcripts. The university also retains the right to withdraw an offer of admission or change the admission status if a student’s academic record significantly changes between the date of admission and enrollment or if the applicant falsifies or withholds information requested on the application for admission.

Freshman (first-year) - no college/university attendance after high school graduation/GED:

Baccalaureate program admission requirements: 

  • High school graduation with grade point average of 2.25 or higher (4.0 scale) (or equivalent GED completion).


Associate, certificate, diploma-level or certification program admission requirements:

  • Meet standards for baccalaureate programs or meet the specific admission requirements for intended program. These vary and information can be found here.

Applicants with a cumulative high school GPA of 2.25 or higher will be admitted to NMU.

For applicants with a cumulative high school GPA less than 2.25, we will review courses, grades, grade trend, the academic program selected, and any other information provided, which could include test scores if the applicant provided them.

A student may be regularly admitted to the university, conditionally admitted, admitted with restriction to a specific program, asked to supply further information, or denied admission until the student can demonstrate potential for success at the college level. Conditional admission requires participation in academic success programming.

Transfer - college or university after high school graduation/GED:

  • Cumulative college grade point average of 2.00 (4.0 scale) in all college-level courses taken after high school graduation/GED;
  • Eligible to return to the last institution attended;
  • High school GPA requirements must also be met if the applicant has earned fewer than 12 college-level credits after high school graduation.

Re-entry - undergraduate students who have not been enrolled at NMU for at least one year:

  • Must be eligible to enroll based on the NMU Academic Proficiency Policy;
  • If suspended or dismissed from NMU following their last enrollment, must submit appeal to the Admission and Academic Policies Committee through the Academic and Career Advisement Center;
  • Students who attended other colleges or universities after their NMU enrollment must be eligible to return to the last institution attended.

Post-baccalaureate - hold a baccalaureate or higher degree and wish to pursue another undergraduate degree (in a field other than that of previous degree/s) or seek an initial secondary/elementary provisional teaching certification or take undergraduate courses for personal/professional development

  • Earned baccalaureate or higher degree from a regionally accredited college or university. 

Non-degree (general) - enrollment in classes for personal/professional development and not to attain a degree or certificate:

  • Must have graduated from high school or earned a GED, or have earned a degree;
  • Must be eligible to enroll at last post-secondary institution attended;
  • Generally limited to a maximum enrollment of eight credits per semester.

Credit earned as a non-degree student may be applied toward degree programs after being admitted as a degree-seeking student.  Assessment will be made after receipt of an admissions application indicating desired academic program and all required documentation, and will be based on the transfer or post-baccalaureate requirements noted above. 

There are some special categories of non-degree enrollment with varying requirements and privileges:

Non-degree high school (dual enrollment, concurrent enrollment, middle college) - enrolled in high school and wish to be enrolled in NMU courses prior to high school graduation:

  • Must have completed the 10th grade of high school prior to NMU enrollment;
  • Must have achieved a minimum 3.00 high school grade point average;
  • Limited to taking eight credits per semester.

Exceptions are possible based on various circumstances. Please see the Northern Promise section of the NMU website for details.

Non-degree post-baccalaureate – earned bachelor’s degree or higher but wish to take undergraduate courses for personal/professional development and not seek a degree or teaching certification:

  • Earned baccalaureate or higher degree from a regionally accredited college or university.

Non-degree guest – intend to apply NMU credit to degree at another institution where enrolled:

  • Must be regularly enrolled at and eligible to return to home college/university;
  • May not register as degree candidates at NMU;
  • Must have the NMU courses approved in advance by the registrar of their home institution;
  • Must arrange to have any credit earned to be sent to the home institution;
  • Are limited to a maximum of two regular semesters or 32 credit hours and must submit a new guest application for the second semester.

Non-degree international (exchange, English Language Institute) – Requirements vary for these programs, but a minimum requirement is attainment of the U.S. equivalent of a high school diploma or post-secondary degree.

International applicants must meet the academic admission requirements as noted above based on their status as a freshman, transfer, re-entry, post-baccalaureate or non-degree status.  There are some exclusions and also some additional requirements to satisfy U.S. immigration requirements:

  • Non-native speakers of English must prove an adequate level of English language proficiency for admission into an academic degree-seeking program;
  • Documentation of financial support must be provided prior to issuance of an I-20 form.

You will find details about required documents, process and procedure here.

Contact Information

We are happy to help you with any questions you have! If you have submitted an application to NMU you can use the Application Status Check to see which items we still need to complete the processing of your application.  If your plans have changed, please let us know.

We invite you to meet our staff and connect with your NMU admissions counselor.

Helpful Tip: When completing the application for admission, enter the e-mail address you check most frequently. If you are currently in high school it's best not to use a high school e-mail address since schools often prevent some messages from reaching you and also expire upon graduation.

Phone 906-227-2650

Toll-Free 800-682-9797

Fax 906-227-1747