Get Ready to Apply

You must submit a complete application for admission, including official transcript, IU-specific essay, and SAT/ACT (if applicable*) by November 1 to be considered for the early action (non-binding) deadline. Electronically submitted materials must be received by November 1, and hard copy materials must be postmarked on or before November 1.

*Admission to IU is now test-optional. To find out if this is the right path for you, learn more about our test-optional admissions policy.

See all deadlines

Admission to IU is selective, and we consider factors that emphasize academic performance and preparation, as demonstrated by the level and rigor of your coursework, the individual grades and cumulative GPA you have earned through these courses, your SAT and/or ACT scores (if applicable*), and the additional insights offered through your application essay.

*Admission to IU is now test-optional. To find out if this is the right path for you, learn more about our test-optional admissions policy.

High school graduation

You must earn a diploma from an accredited high school (or must have completed the Indiana High School Equivalency Diploma) to be eligible for admission consideration. Students who are homeschooled or attend an alternative school should submit credentials that demonstrate equivalent levels of achievement and ability.

Additional information for homeschooled students

Academic preparation

Applicants should complete at least 34 credits of college-preparatory courses, including:

  • 8 credits (semesters) of English, such as literature, grammar, or composition
  • 7 credits (semesters) of mathematics, including 4 credits of algebra and 2 credits of geometry (or an equivalent 6 credits of integrated algebra and geometry), and 1 credit of pre-calculus, trigonometry, or calculus
  • 6 credits (semesters) of social sciences, including 2 credits of U.S. history; 2 credits of world history/civilization/geography; and 2 additional credits in government, economics, sociology, history, or similar topics
  • 6 credits (semesters) of sciences, including at least 4 credits of laboratory sciences: biology, chemistry, or physics
  • 4 credits (semesters) of world languages
  • 3 or more credits (semesters) of additional college-preparatory courses; additional mathematics credits are recommended for students intending to pursue a science degree and additional world language credits are recommended for all students

If your high school does not offer the courses needed to meet one or more of the course requirements noted above, alternative college-preparatory courses may be substituted for those that are not available. Contact your IU admission counselor to discuss course substitutions.

When available and appropriate, we encourage students to enroll in a challenging curriculum that includes dual credit, Advanced Placement (AP)International Baccalaureate (IB), and/or Advance College Project (ACP) courses.

Grades in academic classes

Your cumulative GPA, as well as the grades you have earned in the 34 courses required for admission, will be an important part of the application review process. If your school computes a weighted GPA and includes this GPA on your transcript, we will consider it as part of our review for both the admission and scholarship processes.

For fall 2020, the middle 50 percent range for GPA for admitted freshmen was 3.61–4.00.

Application essay

The IU-specific essay that you submit as part of your application will be the same essay question regardless of which platform you choose. If you are applying through the Common Application, this essay is called the Writing Supplement for IU Bloomington. In 200–400 words, you’ll be asked to describe your academic and career plans and any special interest (for example, undergraduate research, academic interests, leadership opportunities, etc.) that you are eager to pursue as an undergraduate at Indiana University. Also, if you encountered any unusual circumstances, challenges, or obstacles in pursuit of your education, you may share those experiences and how you overcame them. Please note that this essay may be used for scholarship consideration.

Standardized test scores

COVID-19 Update: If you apply for the November 1 early action (non-binding) deadline for fall 2021 and haven’t been able to take the ACT or SAT, we have updated our process to allow you to apply test-optional at the point of application and if you wish, have your scores considered later. To learn more about this option visit our test-​optional website.

Please note: When you get to the test-optional section of the application, you will see that it says you cannot change your selection after applying. However, please know that we are making an exception to this process this year. 

IU's test-optional admissions policy allows you to choose at the point of application whether to have your SAT or ACT test scores considered as part of your admissions review—letting you decide how best to tell your academic story. Research indicates that for most students, high school GPA paired with test scores provides the best prediction of academic success at Indiana University. However, for some students a standardized test score may not show all that they are capable of or tell the full story of their potential.

While you will decide if you should apply test-optional, we provide various resources and guidance through our office, website, and your personal admission counselor.

If you choose to have your test scores considered as a part of your admissions review, you may share either official or self-reported scores. If you choose to self-report your scores, you can do so on your application. You will also have the option to self-report additional scores after submitting your application. If offered admission, the offer will be contingent upon receipt of official test scores from testing agencies, which must match or be higher than those self-reported during the admissions process.

We superscore, which means that if you choose to have test scores considered as part of your admissions review, when we are reviewing your application, we'll consider your best test scores. We’ll consider the highest Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing for the SAT. For the ACT, we’ll combine the highest scores for each subtest from different exams for a new ACT Composite. Due to the challenge some students are facing in having access to taking a SAT/ACT test, all undergraduate student populations applying for the 2021 terms are eligible to apply test-optional.

For future terms, some students will be required to provide SAT or ACT scores. Homeschooled students, students who have attended a school with non-traditional evaluation methods where traditional alpha or numerical grades are not assigned, and student-athletes subject to NCAA eligibility standards will be required to submit a standardized test score

Other decision-making factors

As part of our holistic review process, we may consider supplemental information—when provided—such as leadership experience, extracurricular activities, community service, work experience, and counselor or teacher recommendations. Please note, however, that letters of recommendation are not required. If you do choose to submit them, we will accept one counselor recommendation and one teacher recommendation.

Merit scholarships

Merit scholarships (IU Academic Scholarships) are awarded based on the academic information you provide through your application for admission.

For highest scholarship consideration—including consideration for the IU Academic Scholarships and the Selective Scholarship Application (SSA)—you must submit a complete application for admission, including official transcript, IU-specific essay, and self-reported or official test scores (if applicable*) by November 1.

*Admission to IU is now test-optional. To find out if this is the right path for you, learn more about our test-optional admissions policy.

Learn more about this scholarship deadline

Additional scholarships

You can also look for additional scholarship opportunities within your community and at your high school.

Get more information about scholarships

Ready to apply right now? We highly recommend that you read the application tips and FAQs in Step 2 of our application process before starting and submitting your application.

You will need to submit the following materials to apply for admission:

  • The application. Freshman applicants may apply using any one of the application platforms listed below.
    • Apply IU Application
    • Common Application
    • Coalition Application
  • A brief essay. As part of your application, regardless of which platform you choose, you will need to submit the IU-specific essay. If you are applying through the Common Application, this essay is called the Writing Supplement for IU Bloomington. In 200–400 words, you’ll be asked to describe your academic and career plans and any special interest (for example, undergraduate research, academic interests, leadership opportunities, etc.) that you are eager to pursue as an undergraduate at Indiana University. Also, if you encountered any unusual circumstances, challenges, or obstacles in pursuit of your education, you may share those experiences and how you overcame them. Please note that this essay may be used for scholarship consideration.
  • The $65 application fee. The application fee is non-refundable. If you experience any payment issues, please contact us at ADMSBUS@indiana.edu or 812-855-0661.
  • Your high school transcript and full senior year schedule (not just fall courses), which must come directly from your high school or may be uploaded and submitted as part of your application. Make sure you submit your transcript and full senior year schedule early enough to meet the November 1 deadline.
  • SAT/ACT scores (if applicable*). If you took the ACT or SAT, you may share either official or self-reported scores. If you self-report your scores and are offered admission, the offer will be contingent upon receipt of test scores from official testing agencies, which must match or be higher than those self-reported during the admissions process.

*Admission to IU is now test-optional. To find out if this is the right path for you, learn more about our test-optional admissions policy.

COVID-19 Update: If you apply for the November 1 early action (non-binding) deadline for fall 2021 and haven’t been able to take the ACT or SAT, we have updated our process to allow you to apply test-optional at the point of application and if you wish, have your scores considered later. Self-reporting your scores is only applicable if you decide to have your test scores considered at the point of application.

Please note: When you get to the test-optional section of the application, you will see that it says you cannot change your selection after applying. However, please know that we are making an exception to this process this year. 

Before you apply, make sure you spend some time exploring our different schools and 200+ majors.

When you fill out your application, you’ll be asked to choose an intended major. If you know what you’d like to major in, select that major.

If you don’t know what you want to major in, that’s OK. IU students who have not yet chosen a major are considered exploratory students. It’s fine to spend time discovering the path that’s right for you. Indiana University promotes academic exploration above all else. It’s why most freshmen begin their studies in University Division (UD), where they fulfill the general requirements needed to certify into a degree-granting school or college.

Learn more about being an exploratory student

Most new students at IU begin their studies at University Division to complete the general requirements needed to certify into a degree-granting major or school. However, each year, about 40 percent of incoming students are directly admitted into a school or college.

The following IU Schools offer direct admission:

The eligibility requirements, processes for receiving direct admission, and notification processes for direct admission are different for each school or college. To learn more about direct admission, you’ll want to visit each school’s admissions page.

IU awards AP and college credit that can help you get a head start on your degree program.

Read more about advanced placement, credit, and exemptions

If you took a college class while you were in high school, you might be able to transfer that credit to IU Bloomington.

To be considered for credit at IU, the course you took in high school must be taken from an accredited institution and must correspond to a course in our curriculum—in content and credit value. You must also earn a grade of C or better in the course.

If you are admitted to IU, we will evaluate your transcript(s) and supply you with a detailed Credit Transfer Report showing how previous college coursework will transfer. You can access your Credit Transfer Report via One.IU. Please be aware that it may take four to six weeks to process and evaluate the transcript once it arrives in our office.

Learn more at our Credit Transfer Service

If you are a student with limited financial resources, you may be eligible for an admission application fee waiver.

To obtain a fee waiver, you must request a fee waiver when completing your application.

  1. If you are submitting the Apply IU Application, you will then need to submit a completed ACT, SAT, or NACAC fee waiver form that has been verified by your high school counselor.
  2. If you are submitting the Common Application, you will need to complete the fee waiver section on your profile and your counselor will need to verify your eligibility.
  3. If you are submitting the Coalition Application, you will answer questions within the application that will determine your eligibility. No additional form or counselor verification is required.

We will not process your application or make an admission decision until we receive a completed fee waiver or the non-refundable $65 application fee.

If you are a 21st Century Scholar or a Balfour Scholar, the application fee will be waived if you indicate you participate in one of these programs when you complete your application.

We’re thrilled that you want to attend IU Bloomington. Students from around the world are part of what makes our campus so dynamic and diverse. To apply for admission, contact the Office of International Services, who will guide you through the admissions process for international students.

If you’re interested in the Jacobs School of Music, you may apply using Apply IU, the Common Application, or the Coalition Application. After submitting only one of these applications, you must complete the Jacobs Schools of Music supplemental application and submit an additional fee.

Learn more about Jacobs School of Music requirements

Ready to complete your application?

Go to step 2