The Admission Process

Test Waiver Policy

Test Waiver Policy

For first-year students applying for a 2021 or 2022 term, official test scores (ACT/SAT) will be not required for admission. Students will have the option to select on the application whether or not they will be submitting test scores for review. Please contact your admissions counselor with any questions! 

View our Test Waiver Policy


Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as engaged global citizens who understand their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Office of Admissions furthers this mission by recruiting, admitting and enrolling a diverse and competitive body of undergraduate students whose experiences and talents benefit the Appalachian community. As the front door to Appalachian, our leadership in service and collaboration with campus partners sets the tone for the unique experience awaiting future Mountaineers.

Appalachian prohibits discrimination based on age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, and veteran status, as defined by federal and state law and UNC system policies.

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Holistic review

At Appalachian, you are more than the sum of your GPA and test scores – we want to learn about who you are, what you are passionate about and what you can contribute to the Appalachian Community.

All students are reviewed holistically, and submitting all recommended materials will improve your chance of admission.

Academic Profile

Below are the GPA/test score ranges of the middle 50% of first-year admits. 25% of admitted students fall either below or above these levels:

  • Weighted GPA: 3.82-4.34
  • SAT (new – evidence-based reading and writing and math): 1100-1270
  • ACT (composite): 22-28

The cumulative GPA range of the middle 50% of admitted transfer students: 2.82-3.58

Minimum Requirements

All state institutions in North Carolina have minimum course requirements and admission requirements as established by the Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina System. Meeting these minimum requirements does not guarantee admission. Students under the age of 21 with less than 24 transferable hours must have taken the following courses and meet these requirements. Students graduating from a NC Cooperative Innovative or Early College High School with a completed associates degree may be exempt from these requirements. For questions regarding waivers of any of these requirements, please contact your admissions counselor.

Students currently attending a GEAR UP high school that meet the following academic requirements and application deadlines are guaranteed admission to Appalachian.

To Qualify: 

Required Materials:

  • A non-refundable application fee of $65 (USD) – Appalachian accepts Official Application Fee Waivers from Common App, the College Board, ACT and National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC)

  • Official high school/secondary school transcript

  • College transcripts (of any completed coursework)

  • Application essay (a response to one of the seven Common App prompts)

Students meeting the GEAR UP Guarantee requirements can anticipate an admission decision within two to six weeks after completing the application for admission. 

Students that do not  meet the requirements of the GEAR UP Guarantee will still be considered for admission and are encouraged to apply as early as possible as Appalachian holistically reviews each application for admission. We encourage all students to discuss their individual college goals and pathways with a school counselor or college advisor. 

Aspire Appalachian is a co-admission program between Appalachian and partner community colleges intended for successful students who plan to transfer to Appalachian after completing the Associate of Arts (AA), Associate of Science (AS), or Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degrees through an institutional or state-wide articulation agreement. The program creates predictable pathways from a partner community college to Appalachian and is designed to provide North Carolinians affordable access to higher education. Aspire Appalachian also provides advising support for students during their education at a partner community college and prepares them for a successful transition to Appalachian.

  • A high school diploma or its equivalent;
  • Four English courses;
  • Four mathematics courses, including Algebra I, Algebra II, geometry, a higher level mathematics course for which Algebra II is a prerequisite; or any one of the following courses: AP Calculus, AP Statistics, Pre-Calculus (formerly Advanced Math), Discrete Mathematics, IB Mathematics Level II, Integrated Mathematics IV and Advanced Functions and Modeling;
  • Three science courses, including at least one in a life or biological science (biology); at least one course in a physical science (physical science, chemistry, physics) and at least one laboratory course;
  • Two courses in social studies including one in US history; and
  • At least two units of a single foreign language – please note that American Sign Language satisfies this requirement.

College timeline

It's never too early to plan for college. Here’s a timeline to help you get started.

  • students at Appalachian have a rich collection of coursework, find out which courses we recommend and talk with your guidance counselor
  • test scores are an important part of your college application, start practicing for college entrance exams now at Khan Academy or
  • one of the most intriguing aspects of Appalachian is the diversity of campus life so make time for extracurricular interests such as dance, community service, technology, music, sports or other clubs
  • explore majors
  • take a virtual tour of Appalachian!
  • admission counselors at Appalachian are super helpful, connect with yours now!
  • research our scholarships and talk with your guidance counselor about local scholarships
  • take the PSAT in October – Appalachian is home to many National Merit Scholars
  • meet a representative of Appalachian at a college fair or financial aid workshop near you
  • Appalachian is a beautiful and friendly place – schedule a visit to see for yourself at
  • take the SAT and/or the ACT in the spring to see how you might line up to Appalachian’s academic profile
  • look up application and scholarship deadlines and requirements
  • take the SAT or ACT again – nearly all students at Appalachian take these more than once
  • talk to your family about completing the FAFSA – most Appalachian students receive financial aid
  • begin your applications for admission and scholarships as early as August to allow time for proofing
  • request letters of recommendation for scholarships early
  • complete the FAFSA as early as October
  • plan for spring event dates at Appalachian
  • update Appalachian with any changes to your coursework and keep your grades up
  • discuss your financial aid package with family and Appalachian’s financial aid staff
  • once admitted, submit your enrollment deposit!
  • make sure that Appalachian has received your latest official high school and college transcripts
  • log in to your MyMountaineer portal to follow your next steps as a Mountaineer!

  • Early college/middle college students still apply as a first-year students at Appalachian and are subject to first-year deadlinesStudents graduating with an AA or AS degree will have a choice to be evaluated with or without respect to UNC Minimum Admission Requirements after submitting the application.
  • College transcripts are required for the admission process and all college credit hours will be considered if it will help you be more competitive for admission.
  • Begin thinking about what degree program the would like to pursue.

    • Programs requiring admission to upper divisions (nursing for example) are highly selective, and these students should plan on earning all As if possible in every college course.

    • Programs with heavy course sequencing may require three to four years of college coursework to complete, even if a student has an AA or AS degree.

  • Look at the Transfer Guides and Baccalaureate Degree Plans.

  • If you have any course selection or credit evaluation questions, reach out to the Office of Transfer Services.

To learn about transferring from a four-year or community college, view the information for transfer students.

Find your counselor

Each North Carolina county and out-of-state region has an admission counselor dedicated to mentoring applicants through the admission process. Find your counselor today!

High school & community college counselors

Check out our counselor resources on our list of frequently asked questions and our forms.

AP, IB, CLEP, Cambridge International & college courses

Not only can taking Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB),  The Cambridge International A-AS level exams and dual enrollment courses give you college credit, they can make you more competitive for admission! Appalachian also awards credit for many College Level Entrance Program (CLEP) exams. Find out more about the credit that we offer for these exams and what college courses typically transfer to Appalachian.

The Cambridge International A-AS level exams now count as transfer credit for many courses at Appalachian. Students entering with this coursework will be articulated in the same way as AP and IB scores are considered. The Cambridge curriculum, similar in concept to the IB curriculum, is offered in many high schools throughout the country as well as internationally. Learn more about the curriculum and course offerings.

Learn about unique opportunities


Explore opportunities available to incoming Appalachian students like Student Support Services through our Student Learning Center.

Frequently asked questions

Have a question? Check out our list of frequently asked questions. If you don't find the answer there, feel free to contact our office to speak with an admission counselor.