Admissions requirements and process

Undergraduate Admissions

As a student in the College of Arts & Sciences, you will live at the center of an academic community that is constantly generating new ideas. You will learn from excellent teachers who will challenge you to expand your imagination, while you sharpen your critical and creative responses to all encounters. And you will join a group of impressive, independent and diverse thinkers, who will help you forge your own path to discovery and transformation.

Undergraduate Admissions Requirements:

As you prepare to apply to the College of Arts & Sciences, please review the following requirements for First-Year Students:

A&S requires the following High School Coursework:

  • 4 units of English
  • 3 units of Mathematics (including pre-calculus)
  • 3 units of Science
  • 3 units of one foreign language (For heritage speakers or students who have initiated a foreign language sequence before high school: completion of at least the third level (e.g. Spanish 3))
  • Also recommended: an additional unit of advanced mathematics and science.

In addition to the Common Application (CA), A&S requires the following Application Materials:

  • Official Secondary/High School Transcript followed by a Mid-Year Report when it becomes available
  • Counselor Recommendation and School Report
  • 2 Teacher Evaluations
  • Test Scores:
    • For Fall 2025 applicants to the College of Arts & Sciences, the submission of SAT/ACT test results is recommended for both Early Decision and Regular Decision.
    • For Fall 2026 applicants to the College of Arts & Sciences, the submission of SAT/ACT test results is required for both Early Decision and Regular Decision.
    • International students: You may be asked to submit results from an English language proficiency exam.
  • Cornell Writing Supplement 
  • $80 application fee or Fee Waiver

Supplemental Materials

Undergraduate applicants to the College of Arts & Sciences who believe that their musical abilities will enhance their application (regardless of their intended major) are encouraged to supplement their applications with music recordings. All recordings must be electronic, no longer than 10 minutes in length, and highlight the applicant. All recordings submitted through the Department of Music’s online portal are evaluated by Cornell faculty for our Admissions Committee.

With the exception of musical recordings, the College of Arts & Sciences does not review art portfolios, films, creative writing samples, academic papers, or other supplemental materials provided outside the parameters of the Common Application.


The College of Arts & Sciences does not require, nor offer, on-campus interviews. Due to the high volume of applications we receive each year, we are unable to extend an interview to every candidate and thus, in the interest of fairness and equity, interviews are not part of our Admissions process. To learn about the university and our programs, we encourage you explore Cornell's Virtual Visit information, watch our 4-part virtual information sessionmeet some of our most recent graduates, and explore our academic departments.

Click here to find more information about Cornell's First-Year admission requirements.

Have additional questions about undergraduate admissions?

Explore the Undergraduate Admissions Office's FAQs.

Email us.

Call us at 607-255-4833.

Ask a current Arts & Sciences Cornell student about academics, clubs and activities, or life in Ithaca.

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Transfer Admissions

Prospective students should review the information, timeline, and FAQs relevant for all Cornell transfer applicants.

Transfer applicants to the College of Arts & Sciences:

  • You will need to complete a minimum of 60 credits at Cornell and four semesters in residency in the College of Arts & Sciences.
  • If you wish to transfer to the College of Arts & Sciences as a junior, you need to have fulfilled the prerequisite coursework for your intended major. Information on major prerequisites and requirements can be found in Cornell's Courses of Study.
  • For more information on transfer credits, see Transferring Credits.

If you have questions, please contact us at

Transfer Option

The Transfer Option (TO) is offered to a select group of first-year applicants to encourage them to apply to enter the College of Arts & Sciences as sophomores after completing one year of full-time study at another institution. Please be aware that a TO is not an acceptance to Cornell and that although successful completion of the requirements outlined below makes one a highly competitive transfer applicant, doing so is not a guarantee of future admission.

  • Completion of two semesters or three quarters of full-time study at a regionally accredited, degree-granting institution during the upcoming academic school year (this does not include the summer semester).
  • Enrollment in a variety of courses in the liberal arts and sciences, including at least one writing-intensive composition course (Note that at Cornell, students can only place out of one of two required first-year writing courses with AP or IB credit).
  •  Earning a cumulative GPA. of at least 3.5 with no grades earned below a B.

Please note:

  • Those intending to pursue Biology, Computer Science, Economics, or a(nother) STEM field are strongly encouraged to carefully consult Cornell A&S department websites and enroll in core prerequisite courses for the intended major. 
  • We are unable to provide 1-on-1 evaluations or approvals for first-year coursework planned elsewhere; successful applicants will receive a complete credit evaluation when admitted.
  • Students cannot defer their Transfer Option to the following year.

If you have questions, please contact us at

Internal Transfer

Students wishing to transfer from another college at Cornell into the College of Arts & Sciences (A&S) must follow three steps:

  1. Determine Eligibility
  2. Review A&S College Requirements
  3. Submit an Application


Note: IT admission into the College of Arts and Sciences is selective. Meeting the eligibility requirements below does not guarantee that a student will be accepted.

  • You must be in good standing in your home college with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 and must earn at least a 3.0 in the semester during which you apply.
  • First-year students: The first opportunity to apply is as a rising sophomore, or at the end of your second semester. Applications submitted after a single semester will be denied.
  • (Rising) juniors or beyond: You must submit documentation that you have been formally accepted into an A&S major (see below). Applicants who are not ready to formally enter an A&S major will be denied (note that provisional/conditional acceptance will not suffice).
  • Juniors and seniors: the last opportunity to apply is at the end of your first semester as a junior. 
  • You must be on track for “on-time” graduation from Cornell after internal transfer: students for whom internal transfer will result in needing additional time to complete their degree beyond the senior year will be denied.
  • External transfers to one of Cornell's other colleges/schools may only apply at the end of their second Cornell semester.
    • Note for external transfers: Students who transfer to Cornell from another institution must complete a minimum of four semesters in residence at Cornell and a minimum of two semesters in residence in A&S. Please review the A&S residency requirement. Please note that the College of Arts & Sciences will reevaluate your external transfer credit to determine how it can apply towards Arts & Sciences degree requirements. Shortly after admission, please carefully review your DUST report so that you have a thorough understanding of your progress towards your degree.
  • Students on a leave of absence: If you are withdrawn from Cornell or on a required leave of absence from your home college, you must get permission to apply. Please email

Questions? Email us at: (Please note that the A&S Advising Office does not take appointments for prospective internal transfers to the College.)


  • Before applying, carefully review the degree requirements for the College of Arts & Sciences as well as the prerequisites and requirements for your intended major on the appropriate departmental website.
    • (Rising) junior or beyond: the Director of Undergraduate Studies in your intended major must submit documentation that you have been formally admitted to the major. This documentation must be received by June 1 (for May 1 applications) or January 1 (for Dec. 1 applications). You may need to wait to ask the department for major approval until all final grades for the semester have been posted. Applicants who are not approved to enter a major may be denied.
    • (Rising) juniors or beyond: you must submit with your application a detailed academic course plan for your remaining semesters. This plan should clearly outline how you plan to complete not only your major requirements, but also the Arts & Sciences graduation requirements (including the foreign language requirement). Applicants who do not submit an academic course plan may be denied.
  • Note that the next internal transfer application deadline is May 1, 2024 (major approval forms for (rising) juniors are due May 15, 2024). 
  • The Internal Transfer Application is available here.
  • Applicants do not need to meet with an advisor in the College of Arts & Sciences.
  • Applications will be reviewed  after all final semester grades have been posted. 
  • Late Applications: Requests to apply after the official deadline should be sent to

Internal Transfer Information Sessions

  • Fall Information Session dates to be announced

Transfer to Another College

Current Arts & Sciences students who wish to explore the option of internally transferring to another college or school should contact the internal transfer coordinator of the target college or school.

Graduate Admissions

From cutting-edge research in theoretical physics to in-depth studies of global issues, as a graduate student working in the College of Arts & Sciences you will have access to prize-winning faculty who are pioneers in their fields and fellow students who are top researchers from around the world.

You'll be treated as a colleague in the pursuit of knowledge and join the culture of collaboration that permeates the College and creates multiple opportunities for interdisciplinary research and area studies.

If you are interested in learning more about graduate study opportunities in Arts & Sciences, we encourage you to explore our graduate fields, the College's departments and programs, as well as the website of Graduate School at Cornell University.

Have questions about graduate admissions?

Please review the contact information on the Graduate School website.

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