Departmental Guidance

Admission Steps

Applicants may be considered for admission to an undergraduate division by graduation from an accredited high school, as college transfer students, or by entrance examination.

Prospective students should obtain a University of Houston undergraduate/post-baccalaureate admission application. This publication contains detailed information on application procedures.

Students will be considered for admission based on the admission requirements in effect for the semester in which they apply. Students who do not enroll for the semester for which they are approved must contact the Office of Admissions to reapply.

The Texas Skills Initiative test (TSI) is now an entrance requirement for Texas colleges and universities. This test is designed to be an assessment of academic preparation. (The TSI is in addition to any ACT, SAT, TOEFL, etc. requirements already established for college and universities). Because of this all new undergraduate students must go to the Academic Advising Center in Room 320 of the Student Services Building to be advised on the TSI requirement before being advised by their major department. For more information on this exam please contact your high school counseling service or the Academic Advising office at the university, (713) 743-1046.

Engineering majors are encouraged to take advanced placement and/or achievement tests in American history, political science, chemistry, and English prior to admission. Course work in these areas will be waived with appropriate scores.

All entering students who have not completed any college level mathematics courses must take the math placement exam. All students who have not fulfilled their English requirements by transfer credit must present TSWE or ACT English scores or, in the case of international students, take the PENNSE exam (this is in addition to the TOEFL). Additional information on all of these exams including advance registration requirements may be obtained from the Office of Counseling and Testing (713) 743-5454.

Foreign nationals who hold student (F-1) or other temporary visas are subject to requirements specified in the Admission Information or International Undergraduate Students brochure. This brochure may be obtained from the Office of Admissions.

Freshman Admission Requirements

You will be evaluated as a freshman for admissions purposes if:

  • You are a graduate from a US high school and have earned fewer than 15 semester hours of college-level credit; or,
  • You are an international student who has completed the equivalent of 12 years of elementary and secondary schooling and have never been enrolled in post-secondary study.
Rank in Class SAT
Math (M) + Critical Reading (CR)
Critical Reading (CR)
ACT Composite ACT English
1st Quarter 1200 570 26 24
2nd Quarter 1260 570 28 24
3rd Quarter 1340 570 30 24
4th Quarter 1370 570 31 24
Unranked 1370 570 31 24
ReCOMMENDED High School Courses for Engineering Majors Credits
English 4
Social Studies 3
Chemistry 1
Physics 1
Mathematics (including two units/credits in algebra, one in geometry, and one-half in either elementary analysis or analytical geometry) 4
Mechanical Engineering Majors Only:  Course in mechanical drawing/drafting in the tenth, eleventh or twelfth grade.  A deficiency in this area may be made up during the first year at the University of Houston.  


Admission Option for Academically Superior High School Students

Special freshman admission options are available to academically superior students based on test scores, grade point average, and other criteria. The university offers dual (concurrent) enrollment and summer courses for students who wish to take college courses while still in high school. Early enrollment is available to a select group of students who have superior high school academic records and who wish to begin university level work after the completion of their junior year of high school. Please contact the Office of Admission for details regarding these admission options.

Transfer Student Admission Requirements

The admission requirements for transfer students (and for those wishing to change major) are listed here.

Post Baccalaureate Students

Post baccalaureate students are students who have earned a bachelor's degree or higher at an accredited institution. All post baccalaureate applicants must submit an official transcript from each college or university attended. Courses taken in the post baccalaureate status may be applied toward a graduate degree, but there are limitations that particularly affect those students whose goal it is to earn a graduate degree at the University of Houston. These restrictions include the following:

  1. Enrollment in graduate-level courses in some colleges is either prohibited or severely limited (as in the Cullen College of Engineering).
  2. Application of course work completed as a post baccalaureate student toward a degree is restricted and is subject to the approval of the individual department after enrollment as a graduate student.

Students who wish to obtain status at the University of Houston should submit an application for undergraduate admission and an official transcript from their previous institution showing the bachelor's degree posted.

The Cullen College of Engineering requires post baccalaureate applicants to have a 2.5 grade point average overall and separately in math, science, and english composition.

Foreign nationals who hold an F-1 or any other temporary visa cannot be admitted as post baccalaureate students.

Summer Transient Student

Undergraduate students in good standing at another US college or university may be considered for admission as summer transient students by completing an application. Summer transient applicants who wish to take courses in the Cullen College of Engineering must bring copies of their college transcripts and confirm with a representative of the college that they meet the UH prerequisites for the courses in which they plan to enroll.

Former Students

Former students of the University of Houston do not need to reapply for admission. However, official transcripts must be submitted to the Office of Admissions from all colleges attended since last enrollment at UH. If the absence has been for more than 13 months, the student becomes subject to the new degree plan and catalog in effect at the time of readmission. Courses at the 3000 level and above in the major which are more than 7 years old at the time of graduation may not be used to satisfy degree requirements.

International Students

In addition to the general admission requirements, the following regulations apply to those who are not citizens of the United States, including those who have immigrant/permanent status. 

  1. A non-refundable admission/evaluation fee of $25.00 for U. S. citizens and $75.00 for internationals must be submitted along with the application. Applications will not be considered unless the necessary fee is paid.
  2. Two copies of the official transcripts of all secondary schools and any college or university studies attempted must be on file with the Office of Admissions before an evaluation of academic qualification can be made. An official English translation of the transcripts must be included if the academic transcripts are in a foreign language. Where university level studies are to be considered for possible undergraduate transfer credit, a syllabus, catalog, or similar bulletin must be submitted, which describes the courses in sufficient detail for proper evaluation.
  3. Applicants on non-immigrant visas must have signed statements guaranteeing their ability to pay expenses while studying at the university. This statement must be signed by a parent, guardian, bank or other reliable financial institution or by a United States citizen who will be responsible for financial needs. The statements can be found in the Admission Information for International Undergraduate Students brochure.
  4. Applicants on non-immigrant visas must submit two passport-size photographs before enrollment.
  5. Scores earned on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) must be submitted before admission will be granted. Minimum scores for admission consideration are 79 on the internet based exam or 213 on the computerized exam. For more information, go to:
    The following applicants are exempt from TOEFL requirements: Native speakers of English usually from Australia, New Zealand, the British Isles, and Canada; Students who qualify for admission on the same basis as United States high school graduates; Students who have earned a bachelor's degree or higher at an accredited United States college or university.
    Students who have been admitted and are seeking a degree, regardless of classification, must take a second English test upon arrival at the University of Houston.
  6. All credentials must be on file by April 1 for that fall and summer semesters and by October 1 for the spring semester.
  7. International students on non-immigrant visas must carry medical and hospitalization insurance.
  8. Only the Director of Admissions may issue an official notification of acceptance for admission.
  9. Visas issued for the purpose of study do not normally carry employment privileges. Government regulations require international students to certify that they have finances deemed sufficient by UH to pursue a full course of study without employment.
  10. Holders of student (F-1 and J-1) visas must enroll for full load of courses. For both undergraduate and graduate international students, the minimum full course load is 12 semester hours.
  11. New students on non-immigrant visas are required to enroll for the orientation program which takes place at the beginning of the semester. For more information go to:

Only international students who have attended United States high schools are required to submit SAT or ACT scores as part of their credentials for admission. The Office of Admissions may specifically request these scores from students who have not attended a United States high school. Students who have graduated from a United States high school must meet the admission requirements for U. S. high school graduates.

Applicants on immigrant visas will be considered under the same academic criteria as United States citizens, although if they have not graduated from a United States high school, they will also need to meet the minimum TOEFL score requirements for international students.

Information about graduate studies and admission requirements may be found in the Graduate and Professional Studies catalog. 

Intra-System Transfer Policy

When undergraduate students transfer from one University of Houston System campus to another, all undergraduate semester credit hours are transferable, although they will not be automatically applied to the specific degree program to which the students have transferred. Determination of the applicability of such credit for a specific degree program is the responsibility of the particular academic unit, department, college, school, etc. into which the students transfer.

Within this overall general policy, certain limitations exist due to the distinct role and scope of the specific campuses of the University of Houston system. Upper level campuses may set a maximum number of lower division semester credit hours that they will accept for transfer. Transfer credit will not be allowed for remedial courses. Finally, all transfer policies within the University of Houston System are subject to and must conform with state policies.

Transfer of College Credits

Students who have taken 15 or more credit hours at another institution are considered as transfer students. Evaluations of transfer work are made in the Office of Admission, usually after students are enrolled and complete transfer records are on file. The application of transfer credits toward a degree at the university cannot be determined until the transcript has been evaluated and a degree plan made. Prospective evaluations, based on unofficial transcripts, are done for counseling purposes by the Office of Admissions or the Engineering Dean's Office.

Former students should notify the Office of Admissions of any schools attended since the last enrollment at the University of Houston, submit transcripts, and request an evaluation of credits.

General Regulations for Transfer of Course Credit

  1. The college from which credit is to be transferred must be accredited.
  2. Courses transfered to the University on the same level and with the corresponding number of hours as earned at the other institution. A student's grade point average for UH evaluation is established only on work done at the university. Courses taken at other institutions in which grades are below C are not transferable or applicable toward degree requirements at UH.
  3. Courses taken at other colleges may satisfy the core curriculum requirements only if the courses are equivalent to UH courses approved for the core curriculum, and if a grade of C or higher was earned.
  4. Courses taken at other colleges that do not correspond to courses offered at the university may transfer as elective credit. Such courses may fulfill degree requirements at the discretion of the major department and dean.
  5. The following courses are not accepted by the university in transfer: Vocational courses, orientation, remedial course work, bookkeeping, general education development tests on high school or college level, courses from unaccredited seminaries or Bible colleges.
  6. Courses in technology from accredited schools will be considered for transfer credit as technology courses only and may not be substituted for engineering courses.
  7. Credit may be granted for courses taken at military service training schools based on recommendations made in the Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experience in the Armed Services.
  8. Credit may be granted for courses taken through various non-collegiate organizations based on recommendation made by the Commission on Educational Credit when such training is considered by the university to be at the baccalaureate level and consistent with the student's educational objective.
  9. A maximum of 12 semester hours in religion from an accredited college is accepted toward a degree.
  10. A maximum of 2 semester hours in physical education activity courses is transferred; 2 semester hours fulfill the requirement.
  11. Students will be allowed to apply toward a baccalaureate degree at the university a maximum of 66 semester hours from a community college. If a student transfers more than 66 hours from a community college, the dean of the college of the student's major at UH will determine which of the hours, not to exceed 66, will apply to the University of Houston degree.
  12. Once a student has enrolled in the Cullen College of Engineering, he must obtain approval in advance to attend another college and transfer work back to the University of Houston. This approval is obtained by petition to the Engineering Dean's Office.
  13. To earn a degree at the university, the last 30 semester hours must be completed in residence on this campus. Only grade points earned at the University of Houston are averaged for the degree.
  14. Students must complete a minimum of 30 semester hours in engineering in residence at UH.
  15. Transfer credit for mechanical engineering courses will be accepted only from mechanical engineering programs which are accredited by ABET.
  16. Unless prohibited by one or more of the general regulations above, the dean of the college in which the student majors will make the final decision concerning the application of transfer credit to the degree program.