The Graduate School makes admission decisions based on a composite of qualitative and quantitative information that include, but are not limited to, the following: the applicant's statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, the academic standing of the student in program(s) in which the applicant has studied, relevant professional activities and achievements, admissions test scores, previous grades, and the recommendation of the faculty in the area to which the applicant is seeking admission. Each application is considered in the context of other applications to the same area, with due consideration given to the availability of space in the program at the time the student applies, the need to maintain a pool of students of superior potential, and other goals of the program. A department may set higher admission standards for doctoral students. Not every student whose credentials meet stated quantitative standards is admitted.

 
An applicant may apply to only two programs at a time and, upon acceptance to each, pursue only two programs at a time. Application to each program will be considered separately. The timeline for each program is based on the admission term for each, the degree completion requirements of each, and so forth. A student who pursues two programs must apply for candidacy and meet the degree requirements for each program. See Degree Requirements for additional information.
 
Persons are admitted to a specific program of study as specified on the application. A request for a change of program or continuation beyond an original purpose is viewed as a new application and is subject to current procedures and standards.
 
Admission to graduate studies at The University of Alabama is valid for 12 months after the requested entrance date. In some departments, students must seek pre-approval if they wish to change the entrance date initially requested on their applications. International students requesting a change in their entrance date should also be aware that their TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores must be less than two years old at the time of initial enrollment at the University. Should the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE become more than two years old prior to enrollment, the student will be required to retest and submit an acceptable score prior to enrolling. If a student applies but does not complete any coursework within 12 months of the requested entrance date, a new application and an accompanying appropriate fee must be submitted. If a student enrolls for classes but then fails to register for three consecutive years, the student must reapply for admission.
 
The dean of the Graduate School is the only person authorized to waive any requirement, admit applicants to the Graduate School, or otherwise notify applicants of the disposition of their applications.
 
Additional requirements may be stated in the divisional and departmental sections of this catalog.
 
Admission requirements are subject to change without prior notice. Being admitted to a graduate program does not mean that each course required in the student's program of study will be available each semester or in a specific semester.

A person holding a bachelor's degree (or who is a senior) from a U.S. regionally accredited institution (or the foreign equivalent for an international applicant), is eligible for consideration for admission to the Graduate School of The University of Alabama.

Types of admission are described below.

Regular Admission

An applicant whose credentials meet both of the following minimum requirements may be considered for regular admission:

  1. GPA requirement: The applicant must have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 overall, 3.0 for the last 60 semester hours in a degree program, or 3.0 for a completed graduate degree program.
    AND
  2. Entrance exam score requirement: The applicant must have a 300 on the GRE, a score at the 50th percentile on the MAT, or a 500 on the GMAT, if required by the department or degree program to which the applicant is seeking admission. (See the departmental sections of this Catalog or contact the Graduate School for specific information.) Admission test scores must be less than five years old. The purpose of an admission test score (i.e. GRE, MAT, GMAT) is to provide a measure of an applicant’s potential for success at the graduate level. If an applicant, through obtaining a graduate degree, has shown the ability to succeed at the graduate level, the completion of a graduate degree is used in place of the admission test score requirement as a measure of potential for success. The admission test score is also waived if the prospective department can demonstrate that the applicant has five or more years of experience in a field related to the graduate degree. Individual degree programs may require an admission test score even if the applicant has a master’s degree or the required work experience.

These are minimum requirements; divisions or departments may set higher standards.

Exceptions to Admissions Policy

Under exceptional circumstances, an applicant may be considered for admission if he or she meets either the GPA requirement for regular admission (GPA of 3.0) or the entrance exam score requirement as outlined above. If such an applicant is admitted, he or she will need to obtain permission to continue in the program, after the first 12 semester hours of graduate-level work have been completed. Permission to continue is earned by achieving a GPA of “B” or better (3.0) in the first 12 semester hours. If the 12 hours are completed in a term in which the total credits exceed 12, the evaluation is made on the basis of all graduate-level work completed at the end of that term of enrollment.  Students admitted under this circumstance who do not meet the 3.0 requirement after their first 12 hours of graduate-level work will not receive permission to continue in their graduate program, and will be dropped from the program.

Readmission

Applicants for readmission who are in good standing should write to The University of Alabama, Graduate School, Box 870118, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0118 or email gradschool@ua.edu, at least six weeks in advance of the desired date of registration to request registration materials. Some departments may have earlier deadlines; applicants should contact their departments for specific deadlines. For students without proof of all required immunizations, the Student Health Center may access a fine, and registration may be blocked.

Readmission of Service Members

The University complies with laws concerning readmission of service members.

A student who has been admitted to or enrolled in The University of Alabama Graduate School may ask for a military leave to fulfill a U.S. military obligation. The student should notify the dean of the Graduate School of a call to military service and provide documentation. Upon return from military service, the student also should notify the dean of the Graduate School of the intent to return to graduate school and provide documentation of honorable discharge.

A student called to active military duty, unless dishonorably discharged, and eligible for readmission as defined by law, will receive an extension of the degree time limit equal to the term of eligible service, with a cap on the number of years in the extension. The extension is subject to the five-year limit as applicable to readmission provisions in the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (Section 484C of the HEA) and implementing regulations in 34 CFR Section 668.18.

Admissions Examination Criteria

Graduate admission examinations are required for applicants to most programs and must be less than five years old. Most departments require a score of 300 on the revised GRE test or a 1000 on the GRE test. Some departments may allow substitution of the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) for the GRE. Applicants to the Manderson Graduate School of Business are required to submit acceptable scores on the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) although some departments allow the use of the GRE. Applicants should consult the department descriptions in this catalog or contact departments directly for more specific information about admissions examination requirements.
 
The following departments have received approval to eliminate or modify criteria for graduate admissions test scores:

  • Advertising and Public Relations (MA): No admissions test required for Accelerated Master’s Program applicants
  • Art (studio art): No admissions test required for any applicant. GPA of 3.0 required for regular admission. NOTE: Portfolio or audition required for all applicants.
  • Book Arts (MFA): No admissions test required
  • Communication Studies (MA): No admissions test score is required if the applicant is
  1. an undergraduate Communication Studies major at The University of Alabama applying for admission into the University Scholars Program and
  2. has at least a 3.3 GPA overall with a GPA of at least 3.7 in the major.
  • Creative Writing (MFA): Admission test recommended but not required. No minimum admission test score. GPA of 3.0 required for regular admission. Portfolio required for all applicants.
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP): No admissions test scores required for post-MSN applicants. GPA of 3.0 is required. In lieu of test scores the applicant must provide evidence of active professional nurse licensure, advanced specialty certification where available, an interview with DNP faculty, and a writing sample outlining a scholarly project idea.
  • Engineering:  A student participating - or who has participated - in the Accelerated Master's Program (AMP) at The University of Alabama is not required to provide an admission exam score. The GMAT is accepted in lieu of the GRE for admission to any College’s dual degree programs with the MBA if the applicant has a bachelor’s degree in engineering or computer science from an ABET/EAC or ABET/CAC accredited program with a GPA of at least a 3.0. The LSAT is accepted in lieu of the GRE for admission to any College’s dual degree programs with the JD if the applicant has a bachelor’s degree in engineering or computer science from an ABET/EAC or ABET/CAC accredited program with a GPA of at least a 3.0. No admission test score is required for applicants from the Navy Civil Engineering Corps (CEC) Graduate Program if the applicant has a bachelor’s degree in engineering from an ABET/EAC accredited program with a GPA of at least a 3.0. No admission test score is required if the applicant participated in the Brazilian Scientific Mobility Program and completed their “Academic Training” at UA.
  • Health Sciences, Human Nutrition, General Human Environmental Sciences (Consumer Science) (master’s programs): No admissions test required for regular admission if GPA is 3.0; admission with permission to continue requires a GPA of 2.5 and a minimum GRE score of 300 (revised GRE test) or 1000 (GRE general test).
  • German (MA): No admissions test required for applications for the MA in German. GPA of 3.0 required for regular admission. NOTE: Writing sample required for all applicants.
  • Marketing (MS): No admission test score required for Accelerated Master's Program students
  • Mathematics (MA): No admission test score required for Accelerated Master's Program students 
  • Music: No admissions test required for any applicant.  GPA of 3.0 required for regular admission, GPA of 2.5 required for admission with permission to continue. NOTE: Portfolio or audition required for all applicants.
  • Nursing (MSN): No admissions test required for applications with a GPA of 3.0 or above.
  • Physics (MS): No admissions test required for Accelerated Master’s Program applicants
  • Social Work (MSW): No admission test required for regular admission if GPA is 3.0; admission with permission to continue requires a GPA of 2.5 and GRE of 300.
  • Special Education (MA) Multiple Abilities Program: Graduates of the UA undergraduate Multiple Abilities Program with a minimum GPA of 3.0 
  • Theater: No admissions test required for any applicant. GPA of 3.0 required for regular admission. NOTE: Portfolio or audition required for all applicants.

Information concerning the GRE is available from the Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ 08540. The GMAT and MAT are given by the testing services of The University of Alabama and by most colleges and universities and may be taken by appointment. Applicants should plan well in advance so the results of the required examination will be available when needed to support an application for admission. Braille editions of both the GRE and MAT can be obtained from The University of Alabama, Testing and Data Management Services, Box 870108, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0108.

Interested persons with restrictions that prevent the use of our online application should contact The University of Alabama, Graduate School, Box 870118, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0118 or 1-877-UAGRADS; telephone 205-348-5921; email gradschool@ua.edu.

Other Types of Admission

Admission to Doctoral or EDS Programs from Master's Programs in the Same Department at The University of Alabama

In participating departments, master's students enrolled at The University of Alabama may apply for admission to doctoral or EdS programs in the same program by completing the Master's to Doctoral program application. Departments determine if submission of a statement of purpose, a new test score, or a new transcript is required. Interested students should contact their departments to ask if they accept the simplified application and if there are any additional departmental requirements.

Expedited Admission for University of Alabama Seniors 

Undergraduate seniors in participating departments enrolled at The University of Alabama who have completed at least 91 hours, have overall GPAs of 3.0 or better, are recommended by the faculty in their departments, and wish to apply for admission to graduate study in their current fields may be eligible for an expedited admissions process by completing the Bachelor's to Master's/Doctoral program application. Students should contact the department or program for details. Students who plan to seek scholarships or fellowships are strongly encouraged to follow the application procedures outlined under "Regular Admission."

Irregular Postgraduate (IPG) Admission

A person who applies but is not admitted to the Graduate School may, on the recommendation of the department or division concerned and with the approval of the dean of the Graduate School, seek admission as an irregular postgraduate (IPG) student, for the purpose of attempting to qualify for admission to the Graduate School. An applicant who is denied admission must not assume that this procedure is available to all; specific instructions will be given to those who are eligible.

Work taken as an irregular postgraduate cannot be counted as graduate credit at the time it is taken or at a later date. IPG students register as undergraduates and receive undergraduate credit for all work completed. Upon completion of the required program of IPG studies (no less than 12 semester hours of advanced-level undergraduate credit taken from full-time graduate faculty of The University of Alabama), the student must request a review of the application for admission to the Graduate School within 12 months of the initial requested entrance date, or a new application accompanied by a nonrefundable application fee must be submitted.

The Accelerated Master's Program (AMP)

The Accelerated Master's Program is intended for gifted and highly motivated candidates for bachelor’s degrees at The University of Alabama whose objectives include degrees at the master's or doctoral level. In participating AMP departments, with a related undergraduate and graduate program, qualified students apply to begin graduate study in their senior year. Although AMP students will typically complete the requirements for the bachelor’s degree prior to the graduate degree, such a program may lead to simultaneous completion of requirements for both graduate and bachelor's degrees. New College students can participate in any of the programs listed below if they have the approval of both the director of New College and the Graduate Program director. A student may enroll in only one AMP program.  

AMP students are classified as undergraduates until they complete the requirements for their undergraduate degrees, and therefore may not hold graduate assistantships until their classifications are changed to graduate status. At that time, AMP students will also become eligible for graduate fellowships and scholarships. 

Any department that offers a graduate program may, with the approval of the dean of the Graduate School, participate in AMP. The following programs currently are approved to participate in AMP:

Department Degree Dual-counted hours Admission test score waiver Minimum Overall GPA for admission Length for completion (years);
Art and Art History Art History 15 No 3.3 5
Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics MS Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics 12 Yes 3.3 5
Advertising and Public Relations MA 12 If major GPA >= 3.75 3.3 5
American Studies MA 15 No 3.3 5
Biological Sciences MS 15 No 3.5 5
Chemical and Biological Engineering MS Chemical Engineering 15 Yes 3.3 5
PhD Chemical Engineering 15 Yes 3.3 7
Chemistry MS Chemistry 15 No 3.5 5
Civil and Environmental Engineering MS Civil Engineering 9 Yes 3.3 5
Communication Studies MA 10 If major GPA >= 3.7 3.3 5
Computer Science MS Computer Science 12 Yes 3.3 5
Consumer Sciences MS Consumer Science 15 Yes 3.3 5
Criminology and Criminal Justice MA 9 No 3.3 5
Curriculum and Instruction MA Secondary Education (Physics or Math) 15 No 3.3 5
Economics, Finance, and Legal Studies MA Economics (Culverhouse College of Business) 15 No 3.3 5
MA Economics (College of Arts and Sciences) 15 No 3.3 5
MS Finance 12 No 3.3 5
English MA 15 No 3.5 5
Electrical and Computer Engineering MS Electrical and Computer Engineering 6 Yes 3.3 5
Geography MS 15 No 3.5 5
Geological Sciences MS 15 No 3.5 5
Health Sciences MA Health Studies 15 No 3.5 5
History MA 15 No 3.75 5
Human Nutrition and Hospitality Management MS in Human Nutrition 15 Yes 3.5 5
MS General Study HES (Hospitality Management) 15 Yes 3.5 5
Information Systems, Statistics & Management Science MS Operations Management 15 (12 for the Enterprise Integration track) No 3.4 5
MS Applied Statistics with Math BS 12 No 3.3 5
Journalism MA 12 No 3.5 5
Marketing MS 15 Yes 3.3 in Marketing/3.5 Overall 4.5
Mathematics MA 15 Yes 3.75 5
Mechanical Engineering MS 9 Yes 3.3 5
PhD 9 Yes 3.3 7
Metallurgical & Materials Engineering MS Metallurgical Engineering 9 Yes 3.3 5
Modern Languages and Classics MA Romance Languages - French 12 No 3.3 5
MA German 12 Yes 3.3 5
Physics & Astronomy MS Physics 15 No 3.3 5
Political Science MA 15 No 3.75 5
MPA Public Administration 15 No 3.75 5
PhD 15 No 3.75 7

Students may start the AMP program once they have earned 90 or more undergraduate hours. Typically, this would mean that an AMP student will apply to the Graduate School in the final semester of their junior year. Once admitted, an AMP student is approved to take up to 15 hours of graduate courses that will count towards both the bachelor’s and graduate degrees. At the time of application they must have overall undergraduate GPAs of not less than 3.3 in all courses (or higher if required by their program). Many programs require a higher GPA for admission and/or do not permit the full 15 hours to dual-count (see table). Permission to take graduate courses will be granted by the Graduate School if the student has met the criteria above as well as other minimum requirements for graduate admission. Upon admission to the Graduate School, an AMP student will begin a program of study leading to the master's or doctoral degree, as approved by his or her department and by the dean of the Graduate School. It is advised that prospective AMP students meet with the Graduate Program director for their prospective AMP program at the beginning of their junior year. Programs may have specific coursework requirements and graduate class prerequisites for which an AMP student must be prepared.

Nondegree Admission

An individual who is interested in earning graduate credit but who is not an applicant for a graduate degree at The University of Alabama may be admitted for nondegree studies with the recommendation of the department or program in which the course is offered and approval of the Graduate School dean. Admission may be granted to a qualified student holding a bachelor's degree from a U.S. regionally accredited institution or the equivalent for international applicants, or to a graduate student in good standing at another U.S. regionally accredited graduate school. Nondegree application forms are available at the Graduate School's Website.

International applicants for nondegree status must submit transcripts (with English translations) and a diploma showing degree earned.  They also must have a TOEFL score of at least 550 on the paper-based version, a score of 79 on the iBT, a 6.5 on the IELTS, or 59 on the PTE. Applicants also must meet all current immigration requirements.

Nondegree admission is granted for attending special institutes and workshops, for meeting professional training requirements, for taking off-campus courses, or for special conditions approved by the dean of the Graduate School. Departments may set restrictions on the number or type of classes in which nondegree students may enroll, may limit nondegree enrollment to one semester only, or may prohibit nondegree admission. A maximum of 12 semester hours of graduate work may be taken as a nondegree student and later applied to the credit-hour requirements for a degree, if the student is later admitted to a degree program. Individuals enrolled as nondegree students cannot register for more than 12 hours without providing written verification to the Graduate School that they do not plan to pursue graduate degrees at the University. No more than 12 semester hours of this nondegree coursework can be evaluated for degree credit. Application of any nondegree credit toward an advanced degree will be contingent upon an evaluation made after the student has been admitted to the Graduate School to pursue a degree program. Responsibility rests with the student to observe the limitations imposed on credit hours, coursework, and transfer of credit. Procedures and online application for this type of admission are available at the Graduate School's Website. Students who have had an application to a degree program formally rejected are not eligible for nondegree status.

If a student is not eligible for consideration for admission to a degree program, the grades the student earns as a nondegree student will not make the student admissible for the degree program.

Each student taking nondegree courses through the University's programs offered at international sites must submit an official transcript (with an English translation) and a diploma showing a bachelor's degree from a U.S. regionally accredited institution (or the equivalent for an international applicant).

Nondegree students are not permitted to hold graduate assistantships. Nondegree students may not be eligible for federal financial aid and loan programs. For more information, contact the Office of Student Financial Aid, Box 870162, Tuscaloosa, AL, 35487-0162 ; telephone 205-348-6756.

Admission of International Students

Applicants who are citizens of countries other than the United States are welcome at The University of Alabama. Highly qualified students from around the world have been extremely successful in our graduate programs, and the contributions made by our international students in the areas of teaching, research, and general cultural enrichment have been great. Standards for admission and financial aid are extremely competitive, ensuring academic excellence.

Interested students should visit our online application center to apply electronically. Applicants with restrictions that prevent the use of our online application should contact the Graduate School, Box 870118, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0118, U.S.A, email gradschool@ua.edu. The request should contain information on the student's citizenship, formal academic preparation, English language ability, standardized test scores, financial situation, proposed major, and date of entry. Requests for application materials receive initial reviews from the Graduate School dean's office.

The fall semester begins in August and is considered the beginning of the academic year, and international students are strongly advised to plan to begin their studies then. Many of our departments and programs will consider applications for the spring semester, which starts in January, but fewer openings for new students are available at that time.

The University of Alabama recognizes that, to be accurately evaluated, applications from international students require more time and more supporting information than do domestic applications. For this reason, international applicants applying from outside the U.S. are encouraged to have complete applications, with all supporting documents, at least 180 days before the beginning of the semester for which application is made. All applications must be complete at least 120 days before the beginning of the semester for which application is made. Some departments have earlier deadlines; applicants should contact the departments in which they are interested to obtain information about department deadlines and other requirements. Applications completed after the deadline will automatically be considered for the following semester. The student whose application is completed well in advance of our deadlines is more likely to be admitted and to receive admission and immigration materials in time to make travel arrangements.

Each international application must hold the equivalent of a U.S. four-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution to be eligible for graduate admission. While individual departments may have more stringent requirements, bachelor degrees from Bologna Accord-certified institutions are considered to meet this criterion.

A student whose first language is not English must submit an official score report for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Testing System (IELTS), or the Pearson Test of English (PTE). The minimum score for admission to a degree program or for nondegree admission is 550 on the paper-based TOEFL or 79 on the iBT. The minimum IELTS score for admission to a degree program or for non-degree admission is 6.5. The PTE minimum score for admission to a degree program or for non-degree admission is 59. TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores must be less than two years old at the time of intended initial enrollment at The University of Alabama. Should TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores become more than two years old prior to enrollment, the student will be required to retest and submit an acceptable score before enrolling. The TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE will not be required from any applicant who has earned a degree from an accredited U.S. college or university within the past three years. The Test of Spoken English (TSE) is recommended for international students who wish to be considered for teaching assistantships. For information on registering for the TOEFL, or TSE available worldwide, IELTS, and PTE visit the testing center websites or contact U.S. embassies, consulates, USIS offices, Institute of International Education offices, AMIDEAST offices, and other organizations concerned with international education.

The University of Alabama offers intensive English language instruction to prepare students for further academic study at colleges and universities in the United States. In addition, the University maintains (through the English Language Institute) the International Teaching Assistant Program (ITAP), a program that all graduate assistants with any teaching or instructional activities who are non-native speakers of English must successfully complete before they are allowed to teach. Students are recommended for ITAP by their departments. For information about these programs write to the Director, English Language Institute, Box 870250, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0250, U.S.A. Admission to the English Language Institute does not constitute admission to a graduate program at The University of Alabama.

Students whose applications to the Graduate School are approved will receive housing and health-service information, a letter of admission, and an immigration document (usually Form I-20 or DS-2019). Upon arrival in Tuscaloosa, students should report to Capstone International Programs and Services in order to obtain registration materials and information on the special orientation session for international students that is held prior to the beginning of each semester.

Nonresident foreign students who are offered graduate assistantships are limited to a maximum .50 FTE (half-time) assistantship. Additional employment outside the University is not permitted.

Students are encouraged to direct any questions they may have concerning immigration, housing, or the health service to the Director, Office of International Student and Scholar Services, Box 870304, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0304, U.S.A. Questions concerning admission procedures should be directed to the Graduate School.

Requirements and deadlines for submitting applications are subject to change; applicants should review the specific instructions on the application forms for current requirements and deadlines.

Conditional Language Admission for International Graduate Students

An international graduate applicant to The University of Alabama may be considered for conditional language admission if he or she does not meet the minimum TOEFL score requirement of 550 on the paper-based TOEFL or 79 on the iBT, 6.5 on the IELTS, or 59 on the PTE and/or does not have an admission test score (e.g. GRE/GMAT/MAT). The applicant must meet all other admission criteria as stated for regular or conditional admission earlier in this Catalog, meet all financial and immigration requirements, and be recommended by the individual University of Alabama graduate department to receive conditional language admission. A student holding conditional language admission may not hold an internally funded graduate assistantship.

Students who have conditional language admission are accepted to the Graduate School but must attend full-time intensive English language instruction at the English Language Institute (ELI). If the student does not hold an admission test score, the admission test must be taken while the student is enrolled in ELI classes. A score that meets admission requirements for regular admission must be submitted to the Graduate School prior to enrolling full time in regular graduate classes. The student must complete the ELI’s Intensive English Program with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in the advanced levels (levels 4, 5, and 6) or earn a score of at least 550 on the PBT, 79 on the iBT, 6.5 on the IELTS, or 59 on the PTE before he or she will be allowed to enroll in graduate courses, hold teaching assistantships, or hold internally funded research assistantships. Students who have conditional language admission are eligible to hold only externally funded research assistantships.

NOTE: In special circumstances, a student may initiate the following requests to his or her department chair. The student’s request and the specific course to be taken must be approved by the student’s department, advisor, course instructor, ELI, and the Graduate School:

  1. If a student has a TOEFL score of at least 500 on the paper-based TOEFL PBT, 61 on the iBT, score of 61, an IELTS score of at least 6.0, PTE score of at least 52, or initially places in ELI level 5 or 6, then after official evaluation by ELI staff, he or she can be considered for approval to take one carefully selected graduate level course per semester for a maximum of two semesters while completing ELI, or
  2. If student has enrolled in and completed ELI Level 4, 5, or 6 with a 3.0 GPA, he or she can be considered for approval to take one carefully selected graduate level course per semester for a maximum of two semesters while completing ELI.
  3. If a student has a UA institutional TOEFL score of 500 and either has completed ELI Level 4, 5, or 6 with a 3.0 GPA or has placement into ELI Level 5 or 6, he or she can be considered for approval to take one carefully selected graduate level course per semester for a maximum of two semesters while completing ELI.

When a student with conditional language admission begins enrollment in graduate courses, he or she must meet all other requirements for conditional admission, as in the Admission Criteria section of this Catalog.

International graduate applicants should inform the Graduate School that they wish to be considered for conditional language admission when they submit their graduate application forms.

International Bridge Program

According to current University of Alabama graduate policy, "each international applicant must hold the equivalent of a four-year bachelor's degree from an accredited institution to be eligible for graduate admission." The University of Alabama International Bridge Program is intended for the international graduate applicant who holds a three-year bachelor's degree from a country where that credential is not deemed equivalent to the four-year U.S. bachelor's degree. By completing a fourth year, or bridge year of undergraduate study at The University of Alabama, an international student from a recognized foreign institution with a three-year bachelor's degree will have the opportunity to enter graduate study without completing a separate four-year bachelor's degree. The student will complete a "bridge year" of University of Alabama undergraduate coursework and then begin the graduate degree program.

International applicants interested in the International Bridge Program should consult the list of participating departments that are approved to accept applications for the bridge program. If the intended major is listed as participating, then the international applicant will apply for the International Bridge Program following the same graduate application process as other international graduate applicants to the degree program. International applicants may apply electronically using the Graduate School 's website or the print application forms. International applicants meeting the Graduate School 's and department's minimum GPA, GRE, and TOEFL requirements for regular admission to a graduate degree program and who receive the department's recommendation will be considered for admission in the International Bridge Program. Students admitted into the International Bridge Program will hold a regular graduate admission for a degree program, but will first complete the bridge year of University of Alabama undergraduate coursework and then begin graduate study to complete their graduate degree program.

Each department that participates in the International Bridge Program will provide a written description and specific departmental requirements for their bridge students. Bridge year requirements include the following, at a minimum:

  • A student in the International Bridge Program will be classified as an international bridge student while he or she completes the bridge year. The bridge year is defined as a 30 semester hour undergraduate curriculum designed to meet basic core curriculum requirements missing from the three-year international degree. A student's course load during the bridge year may not exceed a total of 15 hours per semester.
  • Each graduate program participating in the bridge year program will provide a list of specific undergraduate courses required for their international bridge students. Each department's program will include 6 undergraduate credits of specific courses in each of the following five general curriculum areas:
    1. written English proficiency,
    2. information technology or mathematics,
    3. humanities and fine arts,
    4. history and social-behavioral sciences, and (e) natural sciences.
  • During the time the student is classified as an international bridge student, he or she will be eligible to hold only externally funded research assistantships, and departments will provide careful review of the student's course load and academic progress before granting assistantships. An international bridge student may not hold an internally funded graduate assistantship or fellowship.
  • International bridge students must complete the bridge year and earn at least a 3.0 GPA for all coursework completed during the bridge year before progressing into the graduate degree program.
  • All courses for the bridge program must be completed through The University of Alabama (no transfer credit). Courses completed as part of the student's three-year international degree may not be repeated for credit in the bridge program at the University.
  • Upon successful completion of all bridge year coursework and other department requirements, the department will consider the student for approval to take coursework in the graduate degree program and for possible graduate assistantships and fellowships. The graduate degree will be awarded upon satisfactory completion of the graduate degree requirements.

Admission of Faculty Members for Graduate Work

The University normally does not permit members of its own faculty to earn advanced degrees from the University. A faculty member who wants an exception to this rule must present an extremely compelling case and must receive prior approval from

  1. the dean of the Graduate School,
  2. the dean of the division in which the faculty member holds appointment,
  3. the dean of the division in which the faculty member wants to study, and
  4. the executive vice president and provost.

A faculty member seeking an exception to the rule should begin by arranging an appointment with the dean of the Graduate School.

Seniors at The University of Alabama Taking Graduate Credit

A senior at The University of Alabama who has completed no fewer than 91 hours and has earned at least a 3.0 GPA overall may petition to take graduate courses toward a graduate career. Permission to take a particular course is granted based on approval by the instructor, the instructor's department chairperson, the dean of the student's division, and the graduate dean. The total course load for an undergraduate taking graduate courses should not exceed 15 hours a semester. A senior may accumulate no more than 9 hours of graduate credit. With the exception of seniors officially admitted to the University Scholars Program, graduate courses taken by a senior cannot also be applied to the undergraduate career.