International First-Year Student Requirements

Approximately 1,500 international students from 100 countries are currently enrolled at Kent State. We’re excited to have you join us as a First-Year Undergraduate Student and are here to help you every step of the way. We take a holistic approach to the application review process and consider a variety of factors in the admissions decision. Good luck!

Admissions Criteria & Requirements

Before you begin your application, please review Kent State’s requirements.

Education Level

New first-year applicants must finish secondary school in their home country by the time of enrollment to be eligible for university (comparable to the completion of senior high school in the U.S.). A student who has previously enrolled in a post-secondary (higher education) institution is required to apply as a transfer student.

GPA Requirements

First-year undergraduate applicants should meet the minimum requirement of GPA 2.5 on a U.S. 4.0 scale. Check for specific majors' selective requirements. Students who want a particular program but do not meet the minimum requirements may be considered for the pre-major.

If you are applying for first-year or transfer admission, you are not required to submit standardized test scores (ACT or SAT) as per Kent's Test-Optional Policy.


International students with outstanding intellectual and creative ability are encouraged to apply to the Honors College. Honors students participate in special classes, taught by distinguished faculty, which are small and emphasize active participation.

English Language Proficiency

All international undergraduate applicants must submit an English language proficiency test score to be considered for a Kent State program unless they meet specific exceptions or apply for conditional admissions.

All undergraduate applicants must obtain one of the following:

  • TOEFL iBT: 71; Home Edition iBT: 71
  • Revised PBT: 18 (average score)
  • IELTS Academic and IELTS indicator: 6.0
  • Duolingo:100
  • PTE Academic: 48
  • Completion of the Kent State University ESL Center Level 8 Intensive English program with a minimum of 3.75 out of 4.0 GPA
  • ELS Level 112 Intensive English Program completion
  • SAT: a minimum of 510 evidence-based reading and writing
  • ACT: a minimum of 21 in English

Please note, Kent State accepts MyBest™ scores for the TOEFL iBT® test, in addition to TOEFL iBT scores from a single test date.

Conditional Admission

Undergraduate applicants who do not meet the minimum language score for admission may be admitted conditionally if they meet academic requirements.

Conditional Admission means students will take English language classes at our ESL Center before entering their programs.

Submitting your English test score

When applying as an undergraduate or graduate student to Kent State, there are a variety of ways to submit your score depending on which type of test you took.

Students should request that ETS send official TOEFL scores directly to Kent (institution code: 1367).

An IELTS or PTE report needs to be uploaded as a scanned PDF into our online application system.

All English scores will be verified for authenticity. Students with fraudulent documents will result in denial of admission or immediate dismissal.

English Proficiency Waivers

Depending on your educational background, you may be eligible for an English language proficiency waiver, meaning you do not need to take a language exam. See our country list and related requirements.


Academic Resources

Once you are enrolled and throughout your time with Kent State University, there are numerous academic resources that you can take advantage of such as tutoring, peer mentoring, advising drop-ins, study groups, language or conversation clubs. We offer a variety of options to assist you with your academics and your personal wellbeing too.


Application Deadlines

  • Oct. 1 Spring Semester Application Deadline
  • June 1 Fall Semester Application Deadline

Late applications are accepted but we recommend that international students apply as early as possible to allow for pre-departure requirements.

Application Process & Steps

Follow the steps below to become part of the Kent State community. If you have any questions, please reach out to us any time.

Submit Your Online Application

Submit an online application and a non-refundable application fee of $70.

Once we receive your application and fee, the process continues with an evaluation of your foreign credentials and English proficiency. The professional staff of the Office of International Admissions will make a decision based on this evaluation and the other information you submit on your application. 

Prepare Your Application Documents
  • A copy of your Passport Biographical Page.
  • English Language Proficiency scores
  • Secondary School Graduation Certificate/Diploma/Attending Certificate (Certified English translation and original language).
  • Secondary School Transcripts/detailed mark sheets (Certified English translation and original language).
  • Additional documents if required. Check website for specific majors' selective requirements.
  • Financial guarantee (bank statements) that show sufficient funds to cover educational and living expenses. *
  • Kent State Affidavit of Financial Support is required when you are funded by a sponsor(s). For example: parent, sibling, relative, friend, government, organization or institute/school.*
  • *Financial documents are only required after acceptance.
Submit Your Application Documents
  • For faster processing, documents should be scanned as PDF documents and uploaded after submission of your online application. 

  • TOEFL scores must be submitted through ETS (institution code: 1367), SAT through College Board (institution code: 1367) and ACT (institution code: 3284) through ACT to be considered.

  • For admission purposes, we accept scanned documents of official international credentials and scanned copies of official U.S. credentials (it can be a scan of what was issued to the student). When an applicant is admitted, his/her final and official transcript and diploma should be brought to the International Admissions Office for verification. This should be done within the first semester (or the first module for ESL students). Otherwise, the student's account will be put on HOLD.  

  • International applicants can also mail the application to the address here:

         Office of Global Education (Mailing Address Only)
         Kent State University
         106 Van Campen Hall 
         625 Loop Rd
         Kent, OH 44242 USA

Check Your Admission Status

Please remember that it is your responsibility to check your application status to ensure that we have received all the documents. As a reminder, you are able to monitor the status of your application online. Please note that items sent to Kent State become the property of the university and will not be returned.

Apply for Immigration Documents (I-20)

Now that you are admitted, you will need an immigration document in order to obtain your student visa. Please check the immigration document page for additional information.

Transfer Your SEVIS record (If Applicable)

If you are an F-1 student transferring from a school in the United States, please review the Transfer In Guide regarding your SEVIS record transfer. F-1 students must transfer their SEVIS record in order to maintain their F-1 status.

Provide Final Documents After Arrival

When an applicant is admitted, his/her final and official transcript and diploma should be brought to the International Admissions Office for verification. This should be done within the first semester (or the first module for ESL students). Otherwise, the student's account will be put on HOLD.