Salem State Admissions Essay Layout

First-Year Admission Requirements

All applicants are reviewed for admission based on his/her academic course levels, grades and standardized test scores (if submitted).

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To apply to Salem State University, please submit a complete application, a non-refundable $50 application fee, official transcript(s), and SAT and/or ACT scores (if applicable)*.

Required 17 college prep units

English      4 courses 
Mathematics         4 courses (Algebra I and II and Geometry or Trigonometry, or comparable coursework) including mathematics during senior year of high school
Science3 courses (each with laboratory)
Foreign Language  2 courses (in a single language)
Social Science2 courses (including 1 course in U.S. history)
Electives 2 courses (from the above subjects or the arts, humanities or computer science)

Test Optional

Some applicants may be able to select "test optional" when completing his/her application. Learn how to select test optional and the requirements at

When test scores are submitted, we use a sliding scale based on a minimum grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) and a corresponding SAT or ACT score. If your grade-point average is 3.0 or higher and you have an SAT score above 990 (19 on the ACT), you will receive the highest consideration.

For students with a GPA below 3.0, this sliding scale will apply:

(evidence-based reading and writing, and mathematics) 
2.51 - 2.9999019
2.41 - 2.50103020
2.31 - 2.40107021
2.21 - 2.30 111022
2.11 - 2.20   114023
2.00 - 2.10118024

Nursing applicants**

**Nursing applicants should have mostly honors, IB and AP courses.

Please note that these are minimum admissions standards and do not guarantee admission. Some of our majors are highly competitive and require higher academic standards and early application submission. Information on this website is subject to change at any time.

What is MassTransfer?

MassTransfer provides Massachusetts community college students who complete associate degrees and enroll in linked MassTransfer programs with the full transfer of credit, guaranteed admission and a tuition discount (each based on final GPA).

Please be aware MassTransfer does not apply to every major at Salem State University. You  must complete a specific associate’s degree from your community college that is linked to one of our majors. Please visit the MassTransfer website for the most up to date agreements.



Your MassTransfer status will not be official until after you have completed the appropriate linked associate’s program. You can apply to Salem State University as a transfer student prior to receiving your associate’s degree, but your MassTransfer benefits will not apply until after your final transcript has been received. Please be aware, this is different from MassTransfer Block.


Students may submit the MassTransfer intent to enroll form, however we prefer the student submit our own online application. Our online application acts exactly the same way as the intent to enroll form, as we have an option to select you are a MassTransfer applicant.Benefits

After completing your associate degree with at least 60 credit hours you will be eligible to transfer into a linked MassTransfer program at a Massachusetts state university or University of Massachusetts campus with the following benefits: 

Benefits Final minimum GPA 2.0+ Final minimum GPA 2.5+Final minimum GPA 3.0+Notes
No application feeYesYes YesWe prefer you submit our online application. It will work exactly the same as MassTransfer application.
No application essayYesYesYesWe prefer you submit our online application. It will work exactly the same as MassTransfer application.
Automatic satisfaction of most of all general education requirementsYesYesYesReceiving institution may require no more than six additional credits/two courses.
Guaranteed transfer of creditsYesYesYes60 credits
Guaranteed admissionYesYesSpace permitting in the major and college. Please be aware, Salem State's minimum GPA for admission is a 2.2.
100% tuition waiverYesFor two years, provided the student:
  • Matriculates within one year of receiving associate degree;
  • Enrolls continuously (full- or part-time) in day program; and
  • Achieves 3.0 GPA in first two semesters

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