Academic Programs Catalog

Undergraduate Education

Freshman Admission

A high school student planning to apply as a freshman should submit an application as soon as possible at the beginning of the senior year. There are many advantages to applying early. For example, some programs are filled on a first-admitted basis. Students interested in being considered for merit scholarships should apply by November 1, and all students are strongly encouraged to apply by January 1. Students should apply using the online application available at www.admissions.msu.edu.

The university requires students to have a high school diploma or equivalent. Students must submit official transcripts from all high schools attended, proof of GED (if applicable), a personal statement, and official ACT or SAT scores.

The university seeks to admit students who provide evidence of intellectual performance, good character, and potential, which will permit them to profit from programs of the academic rigor of those offered by Michigan State University. The admission decision takes into account all available academic data, including grades, test scores, caliber of high school program and principal and counselor comments. The university may consider non-academic factors in its admission decisions, including information it receives on an applicant’s leadership qualities, exceptional talents, conduct and community involvement record. Typically, the most important element in the admissions process is high school academic achievement. Each application receives individual attention. Applicants who are admissible will be granted admission pending confirmation of satisfactory status with regard to final grades and other admission criteria.

Priority is given to applicants who have strong high school records supported by comparable test scores. The chief academic officer of the university has authority to grant waivers of usual entrance requirements.

Admission to the university is conditioned upon the applicant providing accurate and current admissions information and upon the applicant updating such data if circumstances arise that make the previously provided information inaccurate, misleading or incomplete in an important way. Submission of an application authorizes the university to investigate the accuracy of statements made and data provided by the applicant and those who submit materials or information on behalf of the applicant. Falsifications, misrepresentations or omissions in application answers or supporting data may constitute grounds to deny or revoke admission to the university. Admission to the university may be denied or revoked if the university learns that an individual has engaged in conduct that indicates to the university that the individual is not ready to be a responsible member of the university community.

The university encourages all applicants to visit campus. Admissions presentations and campus tours are available Monday-Friday throughout the year and on select Saturdays during fall and spring. There is no charge, but pre-registration is required. For more information, please visit www.admissions.msu.edu/visit.


Examinations

Michigan State University requires scores from either the ACT or the SAT for every domestic freshman applicant. Freshman applicants are recommended to take the writing portion of either the ACT or the SAT. SAT II exams are not required by Michigan State University.

Scores should be sent to MSU directly from the testing agency. MSU's ACT code is 2032; MSU's SAT code is 1465. Information on the ACT is available at www.act.org and on the SAT at www.collegeboard.com.


High School Requirements

Entrance Requirements:  Michigan State University continues to support a multifaceted approach to admissions where factors such as grades, test scores, talent and experience are considered along with a critical component of specific course requirements. MSU recognizes that there will be students who have potential for academic success at Michigan State University, but who have not precisely met the high school course requirements, e.g., high-achieving students, students whose high schools do not offer all of the appropriate courses, non–traditional students, and international students. The absence of any particular component of high school course work should not be an insurmountable barrier to admission. Michigan State University urges all interested individuals to apply for admission.

High School Curricular Requirements:  Michigan State University recognizes that adequate preparation for collegiate level programs demands comprehensive work in the academic subject matter areas and substantial training in writing. High school course work requirements provide the foundation on which university work is built by providing basic competencies in the following areas.

English:  Four (4) years of college preparatory composition and literature courses. The ability to comprehend what is being read and to read critically is fundamental for success in college. A student must come to college with the basic ability to recognize assumptions, to identify intentions, to acknowledge the various forms of literary expressions, and to understand and react to the author's message. It is expected that a high school student is familiar with a wide range of literature representing all literary forms and drawn from a variety of cultures.

Clarity of expression is also important. College programs typically require the ability to organize, present and evaluate information and concepts in written form. A student must be able to use the conventions of written English to convey ideas in an effective and efficient manner. The successful student will be able to write analytically and critically, to construct arguments, and to see relationships between content and form, while reorganizing, revising, and refining to achieve a logical sequence of ideas leading to a conclusion.

Mathematics:  Three (3) years of college preparatory mathematics, including two years of algebra and one year of geometry.  College bound students must understand the language, notation and deductive nature of mathematics and be able to express quantitative ideas with precision. They must have skill in such basics as the solution of equations and inequalities, and the simplification of algebraic expressions. Students who take less than four years of mathematics in high school, or who do not take mathematics in their senior year, often find it necessary to make up a deficiency prior to beginning work in their major area of concentration.  Students are strongly advised to pursue mathematics courses beyond the three–year minimum required for admission. In particular, it is recommended that a calculus preparatory course be included.

Biological and Physical Sciences. Two (2) years of college preparatory science courses from the areas of biology, chemistry, physics, and earth science. As science and technology become increasingly important in everyday life, college bound students, in particular, need an understanding of fundamental scientific concepts. They must know enough about laboratory and field work to ask appropriate scientific questions and to recognize experimental approaches to the solution of such questions. They should understand in some depth scientific concepts and should have some experience in laboratory methods. Additional science courses are highly recommended, particularly if a student is considering a scientific or technical field of study.

History and the Social Sciences:  Three (3) years of college preparatory work in history and the social sciences with at least one year of history and one year of social sciences (from such areas as anthropology, economics, geography, government, political science, psychology or sociology). Through their study of history, college-bound high school students should be able to recognize historical trends and relationships. Students should understand the interactions among peoples of different civilizations, races, and cultures, and know the chronology of major historical events or periods and social movements. It is equally important to understand the underlying political, economic, social, or psychological forces that shape those events. Students should have basic factual knowledge of major social, political and economic institutions within their historical context, as well as introductory knowledge of the content and concepts of the social sciences. A course which shows how the scientific method can be utilized in the social sciences to examine major issues and to address problems will be particularly useful.

Foreign Languages: Two years of college preparatory work in a single foreign language. Students intending to major in areas that require foreign language are encouraged to complete additional work.

Additional Recommended Course Work:  The courses noted above constitute minimum preparation for degree programs in the university. To enhance your application for admission and further prepare for academic success at Michigan State University, a minimum of five additional academic college preparatory courses is recommended.

 


Advanced Payments and Deposits

Refer to Costs in the General Information, Policies, Procedures and Regulations section of this catalog for information.

 


Office of Supportive Services

The Office of Supportive Services (OSS), located in Room 209 Bessey Hall, is an academic support unit specifically designed for TRIO students and other MSU students, who, feel the need for additional support to prepare for the rigorous demands of higher education.

OSS assists students in developing their abilities and skills and in planning realistic objectives and goals. Special services designed to facilitate the development of coping and self–management skills in students are available. OSS services include academic advising, tutorial assistance, academic skill enrichment workshops, social counseling, career exploration, peer counseling, graduate study planning, and orientation programs.

Students are encouraged to utilize the intensive services regularly until they have established satisfactory academic progress and have made the necessary adjustments to the rigorous demands of the University.

 


Opportunities for High-Achieving Students

Michigan State University recognizes the educational value of a number of pre-matriculation programs by granting academic credit, waiving requirements, and/or placing students in advanced courses. Please refer to the listed online guides for current information. Other special opportunities for high-achieving students are described in the Scholastic Honors section.

 


Advanced Placement Program

Credit or advanced standing may be granted to students who have earned specific scores on College Board Advanced Placement (AP) Examinations.

Equivalencies for waivers or Michigan State University course credit are available at www.admissions.msu.edu/documents/MSU_AP_Equivalencies.pdf. Students must have their AP scores sent directly to the Office of Admissions.

Students who wish to request removal of Advanced Placement credit from their academic record, need to submit their request to their advisor before the end of the first term of enrollment. After the first term of enrollment, the associate dean of the student’s college will review each case, including its accordance with federal financial aid policy, and  may recommend the addition or the removal of Advanced Placement credit by submitting a request to the Office of the Registrar. 


College-Level Examination Program

The College Board has examinations designed to assess competence usually attained by taking beginning college-level courses. Individuals desiring recognition of CLEP examinations for credit at Michigan State University must present official CLEP Examination reports for all exams taken.

CLEP equivalencies are available at www.admissions.msu.edu/documents/MSU_CLEP_Equivalencies.pdf.

 


Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support - Subject Standardized Tests

Prometric has examinations designed to assess competence usually attained by taking college-level courses. Individuals desiring recognition of DANTES Subject Standardized Tests (DSST) examinations for credit at Michigan State University must present an official DSST Transcript for all exams taken.

DANTES equivalencies are available at http://admissions.msu.edu/documents/MSU_DANTES.pdf.


International Baccalaureate Program

Michigan State University accepts the results of the International Baccalaureate Examinations for placement and course credit.

International Baccalaureate (IB) equivalencies are available at www.admissions.msu.edu/documents/MSU_IB_Equivalencies.pdf.



Opportunities for High-Achieving High School Students

Michigan State University offers programs for high-achieving high school students to take courses at Michigan State University and earn college credit while pursuing their high school programs. Credits earned in the High Achieving High School status may be applied to a Michigan State University undergraduate degree. For additional information on course applicability see the Dual Enrollment by High School Students section of this catalog. Details and admissions requirements for High Achieving High School programs are available at www.gifted.msu.edu.

A student must complete the Application for Admission for High Achieving High School Student, submit the high school transcript, and be recommended by the high school counselor or principal. Permission to enroll under the High-Achieving High School Students enrollment status is determined by the following criteria: (a) courses in which enrollment is desired represent advanced study for that student at a level not offered by the high school and are approved by the high school counselor/principal and representative of Michigan State University's Honors College as compatible with that student's academic program and qualifications. Performance in these courses will be monitored as a condition of continued high-achiever status; and (b) enrollment of a student as a high achiever does not assure regular admission to Michigan State University upon completion of high school graduation requirements.

Students who enroll in a course are charged lifelong education course fees and receive Michigan State University credit for each course successfully completed. Students who enroll in courses in the semester immediately preceding matriculation as a degree candidate will be charged regular undergraduate tuition and fees for those courses. Students are subject to all university rules and regulations which apply to regularly enrolled students.  Coordination of high school class schedules with enrollment at Michigan State University, transportation arrangements to and from the university, and parental approval for participation are the responsibility of the student and the high school.

Students enrolled under the High-Achieving High School Students enrollment status who wish to be admitted as undergraduate candidates must make regular application for their desired degree programs with the Office of Admissions in accordance with established application deadlines. Application information may be found at www.admissions.msu.edu.

 


Dual Enrollment by High School Students

Effective for freshmen entering Fall 2013.
High school students who dually enroll for courses at accredited institutions of higher education may receive credit for work taken at these institutions for courses that have been recognized for transfer to Michigan State University in accordance with the University’s transfer credit policy. For information on transfer courses and credits, visit:
http://www.reg.msu.edu/AcademicPrograms/Print.aspx?Section=505