Transfer International Applicants

Consider Cornell

As an international scholar, you’ll find a world-class education strengthened by the global reach of our students, faculty, and staff. Whether your academic interests have changed or you are looking to continue your education after completing a two-year degree, make Cornell the next step on your journey.


Transfer International Application Timeline

Date Application Materials
March 1
Portfolio due for students applying to Architecture
March 15
Important Deadlines
  • The Common Application with Cornell transfer questions and writing supplement
  • $80 nonrefundable application fee or fee waiver
  • Official (final) high school transcript
  • All official college transcripts
  • College Report
  • Academic Recommendation (from a college instructor)
  • Mid-Term Report
  • Financial aid application materials for domestic and international students
  • Supplemental material required by specific programs
End of April through June
  • Admission decisions and financial aid awards announced weekly
  • Reply to offer of admission within 30 days

While Cornell University will not be accepting external transfer applications for Spring 2024, we encourage you to consider applying for Fall 2024. Please reach out to your college or school of interest with any questions, and we look forward to reviewing your application for fall!

Expand the information below to learn more about each aspect of the application and your Cornell journey.

International Applicant

You are considered as an international student if you do not hold US citizenship or approved permanent resident status (green card). Students whose permanent resident status is pending are considered international students. If your pending status changes to approved during the application process, please let us know and we will update your status. Undocumented students with or without DACA status are considered domestic students for admissions and financial aid.

Domestic applicants can find instructions for how to apply here.

Transfer Applicants

Students are considered transfer applicants if they have:

  • Completed a high school diploma (or an equivalent)
  • Earned at least 12 semester hours of college credit (not including exams such as Advanced Placement) after graduating high school

If a student has earned 12 or more semester hours of credit since completing high school (or earning an equivalent), they must apply as a transfer.

If a student has enrolled as a full-time student at another institution, they must apply as a transfer. 

If a student has enrolled in a dual-enrollment or early-college program and has not yet graduated from high school, they must apply as a first-year applicant.

If a student has previously earned a bachelor’s degree, they cannot apply for a second bachelor’s degree at Cornell. 

English Language Proficiency (ELP)

All Cornell students must have a strong command of the English language to be successful in their engagement in their university studies. If English is not your native language or if you have not attended high school in a country where English is an official language for the four years prior to your planned enrollment at Cornell, you may be asked to submit results from one of the following English language proficiency examinations listed below. We will consider and accept dozens of examinations and other qualifications from around the world in meeting the English Language Proficiency requirement.

The submissions and examinations that meet this requirement include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • TOEFL iBT (Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-Based Test)
  • iTEP (International Test of English Proficiency)
  • TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition
  • IELTS Academic (International English Language Testing System)
  • Duolingo English Test
  • PTE Academic (Pearsons Test of English Academic)
  • C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency (Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency) 
  • Initial View (IV) Assessment
  • Vericant Assessment

Minimum score requirements for admissions consideration and to be most competitive in our review process:

  • 100 and above on the TOEFL iBT and TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition
  • 5.5 and above on the iTEP
  • 120 and above on the Duolingo English Test
  • 7.5 and above on the IELTS Academic
  • 70 and above on the PTE Academic
  • 191 and above on the Cambridge English Scale
  • Note: Minimum score requirements are listed above for any and all assessments and proxies for which we have designated a minimum qualification. If no minimum score is listed above for a particular English Language Proficiency assessment or proxy, there is no minimum qualification, and assessment and proxy results will be considered during the admissions application review.

Note: We do not superscore results from these assessments.

How do I know if I need to take an English language proficiency examination?

You do not need to take an English proficiency examination if:

  • You are a U.S. Citizen/Permanent Resident and/or English is your native language.
  • You received a score of 650 or above on the SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing test OR a score of 30 or higher on both the ACT Reading and English Sections. Note: You must submit our English Language Proficiency Form which will be available in your application portal once you become an applicant.
  • You have studied your most recent four years in a high school, college, or university in the U.S. or other nations where English is an official language. Note: You must submit our English Language Proficiency Form which will be available in your application portal once you become an applicant.
  • You DO need to take an English language proficiency examination if you do not meet any of the criteria above.

Please note that Cornell does NOT waive the English language proficiency examination requirement for students who have attended an English-speaking school in a non-English speaking country.

College and School Transfer Admissions Requirements

Transfer Admissions Requirements

College and School Required Coursework

Cornell has required courses for most majors that should be completed or in-progress at your current institution by the time you apply. For more information, please view the required coursework for the Cornell college or school that interests you:


Application Fee or Fee Waiver

  • Pay the $80 nonrefundable application fee or a fee waiver. 
  • We are committed to making the application process accessible for all students. If the admissions application fee presents a hardship for you or your family, the fee will be waived. Students requesting an application fee waiver from Cornell should respond to the fee waiver prompts provided in the Common Application and select “You can provide a supporting statement from a school official, college access counselor, financial aid officer, or community leader.” You will not need to submit any supporting documentation to Cornell.

High School Transcript

Official high school/secondary school final transcripts must include coursework and grade performance from 9th through 12th grade. 

Your high school should submit official high school transcripts in one of these ways:

  • Common App: In the Program Materials section, under Recommendations, use the High School Official Recommendation Request to ask your high school official to upload your final high school transcript. In the Personal Messages/Notes section, let your high school official know that you are only requesting a transcript and that a recommendation letter is not required.
  • Online document delivery services such as:
    • Parchment
    • SCOIR
    • Scribbles
    • an online ordering system or eTranscript service
  • Postal mail or delivery service in an envelope sealed by the issuing institution.

All official transcripts/documents must be issued in English. If not, an official translation of all documents must be provided along with the original language documents. Cornell accepts English translations done by a teacher or school official. 

College Transcript

Submit all official college transcripts from all institutions the applicant has attended in one of these ways:

  • Common App: In the Academic History section, under Colleges Attended, order your official transcript. 
  • Online document delivery services such as:
    • Parchment
    • SCOIR
    • National Student Clearinghouse
  • Postal mail or delivery service in an envelope sealed by the issuing institution.

College Report

The College Report confirms that the applicant is in good academic and disciplinary standing at their most recent institution. Both the applicant and a college official must complete the form. Applicants should complete the Student Section, and a college official (such as a registrar or advisor who has access to the applicant’s academic records) should complete the College Official Section.

The college official should submit the College Report in one of these ways:

  • By email with the subject line “College Report Email Submission” to, from the official's college email address.
  • By mail or courier service.

Academic Recommendation

The Academic Recommendation should come from instructors who taught the applicant in a full-credit college course. If an applicant has not been enrolled in school for two or more years, the instructor recommendation may be replaced by a personal or employer recommendation.

The instructor should submit the Academic Evaluation in one of these ways:

  • Common App (list your instructor in the Program Materials section’s Recommendations tab)
  • Email to

Mid-term Report

Applicants complete the Mid-term Report when mid-term grades are available for their current college courses. Upload the completed Mid-term Report to your Cornell Application Status Page.

If your college does not give midterm grades, ask your professors to assess your current performance in class. 

If you are unable to get mid-term grades or are not currently enrolled in college courses, upload an explanation in place of the Mid-term Report to your Cornell Application Status Page.

Standardized Testing

SAT or ACT scores are neither required nor expected for transfer candidates.

Students should self-report AP, IB or A-Level exam scores in the Academic History section of the Common Application.

Cornell Transfer Questions and Writing Supplements

Add Cornell University to your Common App to see the Program Materials required by Cornell:

  • In the Questions tab, select the college or school at Cornell to which you are applying to see the college/school-specific Writing Supplement question. Your response should be no longer than 3000 characters.
  • In the Documents tab, upload a 250- to 650-word essay answering “How does continuing your education at a new institution help you achieve your future goals?”
  • Applicants for the Nolan School of Hotel Administration are required to upload a resume in the Documents tab.

Additional Application Items

The following majors require additional material from transfer applicants:

  • Architecture: Required portfolio
  • Art: Required portfolio
  • Design and Environmental Analysis: Required design supplement
  • Fashion Design and Management: Required design supplement
  • Hotel Administration: Upload a resume/CV through the Common App (Program Materials section, Documents tab).
  • Landscape Architecture: Required portfolio. Must be sent to Jamie Vanucchi, Director of Undergraduate Studies at  Please include your full name in the email header to ensure your portfolio is correctly matched with your application.
  • Majors in the College of Arts and Sciences: Submit a list of all college courses you have taken, or are currently taking, that are prerequisite courses or required courses for your intended major(s), along with course syllabi/descriptions. Students intending to major in STEM fields, including Economics, should also submit course syllabi/descriptions for all math courses taken at the college level. Please cut and paste the syllabi/descriptions for your courses into a single PDF or Word document. You will then upload this document via your Applicant Status Page. Use the drop-down menu to select “TR – Course Descriptions.” Please give it the following file name: Last Name, First Name – Course Descriptions. You can find the courses that are required for admission to and completion of Arts & Sciences majors on the college’s departmental websites. 
  • Majors in the College of Engineering: Upload your completed major-specific course description form and course syllabi to your Cornell Application Status Page.

International Financial Aid

All financial aid awarded by Cornell is based on financial need. We do not offer merit, athletic, or talent-based aid to students.

Cornell University admissions decisions for international applicants are need-aware. This means that they will be evaluated for admission with consideration of the ability of students or parents to pay educational costs. Applicants who anticipate the need for financial assistance at any point during their undergraduate course of study at Cornell must apply for aid when they apply for admission. International applicants who are admitted and did not apply for financial aid when they applied for admission will not be eligible to apply for financial aid at any time as an undergraduate at Cornell. To apply for the university’s need-based financial aid program, applicants must complete and submit the CSS Profile by the deadline.