Nondegree Graduate Student Admission Requirements

If you wish to take graduate classes on campus, on either a part-time or a full-time basis, but are not seeking a graduate degree at Iowa State University, you should apply as a nondegree graduate student.


If you have earned a bachelor's or advanced degree from a college or university accredited by a U.S. regional accrediting association and have a cumulative undergraduate grade point average of 3.00/4.00, you are eligible to apply as a nondegree graduate.

If you earned your degree from a non-U.S. college or university that is recognized by the Ministry of Education of that country, the degree is comparable to a US bachelor's, and your academic performance is deemed similar to a 3.00/4.00 grading scale by the Office of Admissions, you are eligible to apply as a nondegree graduate.

Please write the name of the institution where you earned your degree(s) on the application, the full name of the degree you obtained, and the month and year it was earned, and your GPA. The university reserves the right to verify this information with your previous school(s).

If you have less than a 3.00 cumulative GPA, you may request individual review by submitting your official academic transcripts and a letter indicating your educational goals in enrolling as a nondegree graduate.

If you wish to later apply for an advanced degree at Iowa State University, you will need to submit a degree-seeking graduate application, application fee, and official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.

If you are admitted to a graduate degree program, your program of study committee will recommend to the Graduate College which of your nondegree graduate courses (if any) will count toward your degree program, up to a maximum of 9 semester credits.

If English is not your primary language, you need to show that you have met the university's minimum English proficiency requirements before taking classes. This can be done by submitting one of the following items:

  1. An Internet-Based TOEFL score of 79
  2. A Paper-Based TOEFL score of 550
  3. An IELTS score of 6.5
  4. A bachelor's, master's, or doctorate degree from the U.S. or a country in which English is the only official language

If you have a Student Visa or Exchange Visitor Visa, and require an F-1 or J-1 visa eligibility form (Form I-20 or Form DS-2019) from Iowa State University, you must submit official academic transcripts from the last school you attended, and a statement of your educational goals for enrolling as a nondegree graduate.

You should also provide proof of sufficient financial resources to cover your tuition and living expenses for full-time study for the duration of your stay (Review Estimated Expenses.) This is necessary to meet U.S. government requirements in issuing the visa eligibility form. (International students at other U.S. universities who want to attend summer session(s) only do not need a visa eligibility form from Iowa State.)

Nonimmigrants on other visas should check with an international student adviser in the International Student and Scholars Office for information regarding restrictions that may apply under their visa status.

If you have been charged with a violation of law, you may be required to furnish the university with copies of all official documentation explaining the final disposition of the proceedings.

If your records have been expunged pursuant to applicable law, you are not required to answer yes to that question on the application. An answer of yes will not automatically exclude you from admission, but it will be considered when evaluating your application. If you are unsure whether you should answer yes to this question, we suggest that you answer yes and fully disclose all incidents. By doing so, you can avoid any risk of disciplinary action or revocation of an offer of admission.

You should not apply as a Nondegree Graduate Applicant. Select Graduate on the application page.