The Committee on Admissions considers each applicant on the basis of high school academic performance, standardized test scores, activities, letters of recommendation, and the personal essay.
Secondary School Preparation
• November 15 – Early Decision I application deadline
• December 1 – Early Action application deadline (all Early Action applicants will be considered for academic scholarships)
• December 1 – Spring Semester Transfer application deadline
• January 2 – Early Decision II application deadline
• February 1 – Regular Decision application deadline
• March 1 – Sewanee Financial Aid Application and FAFSA Deadline
• April 1 – Fall Semester Transfer application deadline
• December 15 – Early Decision I notification
• February 1 – Early Decision II notification
• February 1 – Early Action and Academic Scholarship notification
• April 1 – Regular Decision and International notification
Enrollment Confirmation Due Dates
• January 15 – Early Decision I enrollment confirmation due
• February 15 – Early Decision II enrollment confirmation due
• May 1 – Enrollment confirmation due
Sewanee admits students who are prepared for its challenging academic environment. The following are typical of what we would expect to find in the application file of a competitive candidate:
- A challenging high school curriculum including at least:
- four years of English
- two or more years of a foreign language
- three or more years of math including algebra I and II and geometry*
- two or more years of lab science (most students have four)
- two or more years of social science, including history
- full high school transcript with strong high school GPA showing consistent or increased strength in class work
- either SAT I or ACT scores, OR complete an evaluative interview and submit a graded academic paper
- extracurricular activities such as clubs, sports, church groups, or work experience
- clearly written admission essay
- recommendations from teachers and school counselors with an optional recommendation from church leaders, work supervisors, or volunteer coordinators
*Three years of college preparatory mathematics (two years of algebra, one of geometry) are considered the minimum preparation for a student to attempt the required mathematics course at Sewanee; most entering students have taken four years of math.
College Entrance Examination Options
Applicants must submit either SAT I or ACT scores, or complete an evaluative interview and submit a graded academic paper. Information on the SAT and ACT is available from the applicant's secondary school or counselor.
Test of English as a Foreign Language
For non-native English speakers to be competitive in our applicant pool, Sewanee requires a minimum TOEFL score of 231 (computer-based), 550 (paper-based), or 80 (internet-based) respectively. Scores from any of the three testing formats may be submitted, but only one is necessary. The University does not offer a conditional admission program for students lacking fluency in English.
Sewanee welcomes applications from homeschool students. The Committee on Admissions asks that such applicants complete additional steps so that it can fully understand the talents, strengths, and accomplishments of each applicant.
- The Common Application’s Homeschool Supplement allows the homeschool supervisor to explain educational philosophy, grading scale, and outside evaluation.
- A letter of recommendation from a teacher, tutor, or professor outside the applicant’s immediate family provides insight into the rigor of curriculum.
- SAT I and/or ACT results provide the Committee on Admission with a standardized reflection of the applicant’s preparation for Sewanee’s rigorous curriculum.
- An interview with a member of the admission counseling staff may be conducted in person, by phone, or via teleconference.
Campus visits for prospective students are not required for admission but are strongly recommended. The campus visit is one example of student-initiated interest in the University, which the Committee on Admissions considers when making admission decisions. A typical visit includes a group information session with an admission counselor and a student-led tour with optional opportunities for attending a class, meeting with a faculty member or coach, or an informational interview with a current student. Other special visit opportunities include residential life tours, specialized facility tours, lunch with a student host, and a nature walk.
Students may schedule a visit by registering on the Office of Admission’s website. Group information sessions and campus tours are available year round and non-evaluative interviews are available during the academic year. Campus tours are offered regularly throughout the year in both the morning and afternoon. On select Saturday mornings during the academic year, a group information session with campus tour is offered at 10:30 a.m. All non-evaluative interviews are conducted by carefully selected and trained seniors in the college, and provide a formal opportunity for prospective students to engage with a current student. Interviewers are interested in learning about not only the student's academic achievements, but also their extracurricular activities and interests.
The Office of Admission, located in Fulford Hall, is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (Central Time).
Overnight visits in dormitories are available to high school seniors Sunday through Wednesday on a limited basis during the academic year. Prospective students wishing to experience an overnight stay in a dormitory must contact the Office of Admission at least 10 days prior to their visit.
Early Decision Plan
Early Decision is an option for those students who consider Sewanee as their number one choice. If admitted under Early Decision, an early decision applicant agrees to withdraw all applications to other colleges and universities and enroll at Sewanee. There are two Early Decision opportunities for which students may apply. Early Decision candidates are eligible to be considered for all potential financial aid awards through both the academic scholarship and/or need-based financial aid processes; however, financial aid awards are mailed to admitted students in March.
Applicants who are NOT
admitted under Early Decision are released from their binding agreement and may be deferred to the regular admission cycle. These deferred candidates must submit a completed Mid-Year Grade Report, along with any additional supporting documentation, if applicable, in order to receive full consideration under regular admission.
The student applying for early decision should:
1. Indicate “Early Decision I” or "Early Decision II" on the Common Application. Complete and submit the binding Common Application Early Decision Agreement.
2. Submit all required documentation on or before November 15 for Early Decision I, or January 15 for Early Decision II. If all documentation requirements are not met by the respective application deadline, the application will be treated as a regular decision application.
3. A student admitted to the University under either binding Early Decision plan agrees to withdraw any applications to other colleges and to enroll at Sewanee.
Early Admission After the Junior Year
Students may apply for admission after the junior year of high school. Although Sewanee does not encourage early admission to the college, this plan is sometimes appropriate for select students. The early admission candidate should have exhausted most of the academic courses offered by his or her high school and be ready academically, emotionally, and socially for the college environment.
An early admission candidate must complete the same requirements and meet the same deadlines as a regular candidate with the following additions:
1. An interview is required on campus with either a member of the admission staff or a member of the Committee on Admissions.
2. Written recommendation and approval must be received from the candidate's counselor, principal, or headmaster for early admission action, including a statement that the student is prepared emotionally, academically, and socially for success in the college environment.
3. The candidate should present academic credentials as strong as or stronger than the average student who typically enrolls at Sewanee (i.e., an A-/B+ average in academic courses from high school and at least 1860 on the SAT or 28 on the ACT).
4. The candidate must state (in writing to the Committee on Admissions) why he or she wants to forego the senior year in high school and enter college as an early admission student.
Although the committee prefers that the candidate meet all requirements for the high school diploma, this is not a requirement for acceptance as an early admission candidate.
Students seeking to transfer to the college from other accredited colleges must complete the Common Application for transfer students, the College Instructor Evaluation form, and the Registrar’s Report. In addition, transfer applicants must submit a final high school transcript, official transcripts from each college attended, and either official SAT I or ACT exam scores.
Credit for transfer students is subject to approval by the Office of the Associate Dean of the College. The College Standards Committee, in consultation with the chair of departments concerned, may be called upon to evaluate transfer credit for courses of uncertain interpretation.
Quarter hours are converted to semester hours at two-thirds face value. Thus five quarter hours equal three semester hours.
To receive a degree, students transferring from other institutions must meet the college's graduation requirements. Each such student must spend at least four semesters in residence in Sewanee enrolled on campus as a full-time student. Because each student must earn at least 64 semester hours of credit at Sewanee, transfer credit is limited to 64 semester hours.
The application deadline for transfer candidates is April 1 for the fall semester and December 1 for the spring semester.
Advanced Placement & Baccalaureate Credit
Graduation credit for general education requirements and elective courses may be obtained through many of the Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) Higher Level tests. Credit will be awarded subject to the following guidelines: A student earning a 4 or 5 on a given AP examination may be deemed to have met one General Education Learning Objective aligned with that AP examination, as determined by the Curriculum and Academic Policy Committee.
• A maximum of one elective course credit (four semester hours) may be awarded for an AP examination score of 4 or 5 or a higher-level IB examination score of 5, 6, or 7. in any of the following subject areas: anthropology, art history, biology, chemistry, Chinese, computer science, economics, English, environmental studies, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Latin, mathematics, music, physics, psychology, Spanish, statistics, and studio art.
• If a student presents satisfactory scores on two distinct examinations in the subject areas of history (European history, United States history, or world history) or politics (United States government and politics or comparative government and politics), a maximum of two elective course credits (eight semester hours) may be awarded in those areas.
• Satisfactory examination results in subject areas other than those specified above will be assessed to determine comparability to courses offered by the College of Arts and Sciences and applicability toward a University of the South program of study.
• If a student presents satisfactory scores on AP and IB examinations in the same subject area, credit is awarded for only one examination.
• Students may earn a maximum of eight course credits (32 semester-hours) for satisfactory AP or IB examination results.
Some students, particularly non-degree-seeking students, may wish to audit or “sit in” on a class for the sake of learning. To register for an audit, a student obtains written permission from the instructor and from the associate dean of the college. Auditors are expected to attend class regularly. The extent to which an auditor participates in graded exercises (e.g., submits papers, takes tests) and the extent to which an instructor grades an auditor’s work are by mutual agreement between the instructor and the auditor. Although neither formal academic credit (semester hours) nor grade is given for auditing, the designation AU may be recorded on an official college transcript for a registered auditor whose instructor indicates that the student has met the instructor’s expectations for auditing by submitting to the registrar an AU designation on a grade sheet provided at the end of the term in which the audited course occurred. The course add deadline applies for audited courses as well as for courses taken for semester hours credit. In other words, a student cannot initiate the auditing or change the status of a course being taken for credit to that of auditing after that deadline. The charge to non-degree-seeking students for auditing is determined each year and for 2013-2014 is $210 per credit hour.