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International Doctoral Graduate

If you have completed secondary school and started, but not completed, a university degree in the United States or any other country, you should apply for admission as an undergraduate transfer student. International undergraduate transfers applying for admission must meet all admission requirements and submit the required materials by the application deadline.

Admission Deadlines

*To ensure sufficient review time, all required materials must be submitted two weeks before deadline. 

  • 1 July - applications to begin study in fall semester
  • 14 August – SEVIS transfers (applications for students currently in the USA with a valid F-1 visa)
  • 15 November - applications to begin study in spring semester

Admission Requirements

1. Cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or above at any and all previous colleges or universities.

2. High school (secondary school) transcript with grade point average equivalent to 2.6 on a 4.0 scale.

3. Demonstrate English language proficiency by meeting one of the following:

Non-Native Speaker of English

TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)

  • 71 or higher (iBT)
  • 530 or higher (paper test)

IELTS (International English Language Testing System)

  • 6.0 or higher


  • ACT English 18+ OR SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing 500+

ELS Language Center

  • Successful completion of the ELS English for Academic Purposes level 112

Cambridge International Examinations

  • English subject O-Level with B or higher
  • English subject A-Level with C or higher

International Baccalaureate (IB)

  • IB English A (4 or higher) or IB English B (6 or higher)

High School (Secondary School) Diploma from an American High School

  • International students who graduated from an American high school may be eligible to have the English proficiency waived if they have a 2.6 or higher high school GPA and an official ACT or an SAT test score.

English Composition Course

  • Successful completion of an English composition course at an accredited U.S. institution with a grade of C or higher.

American College or University Degree

  • Earned undergraduate degree from an accredited American college or university (official final transcripts required).

Native Speakers of English

English Language Proficiency

  • Native speakers of English may have the English proficiency waived if they have the equivalent of a 2.6/4.0 or higher GPA (grade point average) AND an official ACT or an SAT test score.

Application Procedure

  • Submit your completed application
    Apply Online with Common App
  • $20 USD application fee is non-refundable
  • Fee must be paid before your application will be processed and must accompany your application. Credit card payment accepted at the finish of the online application. If using the paper application, you may pay with a credit card by phone by calling 1-877-269-6837
English Language Proficiency Documents
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores must be submitted within two years of examination date. Official scores must be sent from the testing agency. Certified true copies may be submitted for initial review.
  • TOEFL institutional code for USD is 6881
Official Transcripts
  • Official transcripts from all secondary and post-secondary institutions attended. The transcript should be in original language with English translations.
  • The Office of Undergraduate Admissions retains the right to require an Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE) or World Education Services (WES) transcript evaluation if deemed necessary. Students who have earned college/university credit outside of the United States and want to transfer those credits to the University of South Dakota must provide a course-by-course credential evaluation from ECE or WES. No non-U.S. credit will be reviewed for possible transfer acceptance until a report is received; however, students can be reviewed for admission before a credential evaluation is received.
IMPORTANT: Admission decisions are made without regard to financial ability. However, to avoid delays the following documents are required at the time of application.
  • Valid, unexpired passport. Copy of the page(s) containing the photo, date of birth, passport number, date of expiration and signature (if any). If your passport contains a current extension stamp, please also include a photocopy of that page.
Official Statement of Finances
  • All students are required to demonstrate financial ability to pay for at least one year of academic and living expenses before being issued a certificate of eligibility for nonimmigrant status (I-20) by the University of South Dakota.
Submitting Materials
  • Hard copy materials may be mailed to the following address:

University of South Dakota
Office of Undergraduate Admissions
414 East Clark Street
Vermillion, SD 57069-2390

Transfer from U.S. College or University

Students who are already in the United States on an F-1 visa must have their SEVIS record transferred to the University of South Dakota after admission. Detailed background information about the SEVIS transfer process can be found on the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement website or you may contact the International Office at

Contact Information

Contact us with any questions about the admission requirements of the application process 1-877-269-6837 or

Related Links

Additional Information

USD recognizes IB and AP credits per South Dakota Board of Regents’ guidelines:
International Baccalaureate (IB)