International Freshman - University of Houston
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Exceptional Education. Extraordinary Experiences.

Here, diversity is more than just a buzzword. It’s a way of life. It’s what happens when you drop a diverse student body into the middle of the fourth-largest city in America, surrounded by astronauts, Fortune 500 businesses, and magnetic sports teams. It’s what happens when your students come from over 45 states and 130 countries around the world. It’s what happens when your campus is truly a place for everyone. No matter who you are, we have a lot to off­er.


Admissions Requirements

You'll apply as an international freshman student if you plan to attend the University of Houston:

  •   with citizenship from a country outside the U.S.
  •   have no college coursework (or have less than 15 credit hours from an accredited university).
  •   have an equivalent GPA 3.0 or higher (4.0 scale).*
  •   meet English Language Requirements.* Learn more.
*Some majors have additional requirements other than the ones listed above, including SAT/ACT scores. For more information, visit
The University of Houston Cougar Statue

English Language Requirements

All applicants, regardless of citizenship status, must demonstrate proficiency in English to obtain admission to the university. To fulfill this requirement, you must satisfy at least one of the following criteria:

Earn a high school diploma, Associate of Arts, Associate of Science, bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited U.S. high school, college or university.
Complete the equivalent of a high school education or the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree in a recognized English-speaking country.
Take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) OR IELTS (International English Language Testing Service) OR the Duolingo English Test. See all test score minimums below.

Test Score Requirements

TOEFL (iBT) TOEFL (PBT) IELTS Overall Duolingo English Test SAT Total / Creative Writing* ACT Composite / English*
79 550 6.5 105 1170/530 24/21

The testing agency should mail official IELTS score reports to the University of Houston, Office of Undergraduate Admissions.

*SAT/ACT scores are only required for special programs.

Important Dates and Deadlines


Summer 2021 Application
April 1, 2021

Fall 2021 Application
May 31, 2021

Fall 2021 Scholarship Priority Deadline
November 8, 2020


Use these codes to send your test scores to us directly from the testing agency:

SAT: 6870

ACT: 4236

TOEFL 6870

Application materials may be due later than the application deadline. See all dates and deadlines.

Application Process


Apply Online & Pay Application fees

Go to or to apply. No essay required! Then, pay the $90 application fee.


Submit Test Scores

Send official test scores directly from the testing agency.  SAT/ACT scores are only required for special programs. Please note that TOEFL/IELTS test scores expire two full years after the test date.


Submit Academic Records

Send official* secondary school or high school academic records (transcripts, mark sheets, graduation certificate, etc.), preferably submitted electronically through your school counselor via email or the Common Application.


Check Your Application Status

Check your application status in your self-service portal.


Receive Your I-20

Admitted students are notified by email and provided instructions to receive an I-20.

Submit these materials after admission:

  • Passport ID
  • Financial Documents
  • International Address Form

Become an #OfficialCoog

Register for your mandatory Orientation in your self-service portal.

Then, complete the International Student Check-In. Learn more about the International Student Check-In process at

Receiving Your I-20

The following items are required to apply for an F-1 visa or maintain F-1 visa status. Upload your documents to your myUH self-service account at (All documents must be uploaded as a PDF file.) Please note that the I-20 form and its required items do not need to be completed by application deadlines.

  • Letter of Financial Backing Form

    The Letter of Financial Backing Form must be less than six months old from the date of the sponsor(s)’ signature(s).

  • Bank Statement

    The bank statement must be less than six months old, and it must indicate a minimum balance of USD $38,930 or the equivalent. To upload: If you have more than one page, please save all pages into one PDF file before uploading. 

  • Copy of biometric page of current passport

    Submit a copy of your biometric page of your current passport (and U.S. visa, if available).

  • International Address Form

    International students seeking an I-20 from the University of Houston must provide a physical address outside the United States in their home country using the International Address Form

Delivery and Pick Up Options

Choose how you want to receive your I-20 from the three options below.


Option 1: Regular Overseas Mail

Overseas mail takes 4-6 weeks. If you want your I-20 sent by regular overseas mail, no response is required. Your I-20 will be sent by regular overseas mail to the address indicated on your International Address Form. Please do not e-mail to confirm your overseas address.

Option 2: Express Mail

With this option, you will receive your I-20 within 5 days after processing. Express mail is at the expense of the student. To select express mail:

  1. Go to the University Express Mail Service (UEMS)
  2. Select "Student Sign Up"
  3. Create an account
  4. Select the University of Houston as your school and the Office of Admissions as the department
  5. Enter your mailing, payment, and myUH ID

Option 3: Pick Up

Student I-20’s will be available for pick-up upon receipt of the I-20 Release Form. A confirmation e-mail for pick-up will be sent 3-5 business days from the date the release form is submitted.

Student Life

  • Housing

    Want to learn and grow in your own space? Living on campus is still an option. We know how important it is to feel safe. That’s why we’ve increased cleaning for all common spaces, adjusted spaces to accommodate social distancing, and made single rooms available to all future residents.
  • Get Involved

    600+ student organizations. 35+ fraternities and sororities. 100+ multi-cultural organizations. 15 intercollegiate sport teams. No matter who you are, we have a lot to o­ffer. So, between classes and making memories that’ll last a lifetime, you’re going to have plenty to do.
  • Guided Virtual Tours

    The Office of Admissions is now offering virtual campus visits. Register for an opportunity to receive a live campus tour from a UH student ambassador and a brief information session from an admissions representative. This visit is approximately 30 minutes.

    International Student and Scholar Services (ISSSO) provides support for the special needs of international students and exchange visitors related to their status as non-immigrants of the United States. They offer many services such as facilitating official campus check-in and orientation, assisting with maintaining visa status and U.S. regulation compliance, providing counseling and advocacy services, and more.


Admissions representatives are experts when it comes to applying to the University of Houston. If you'd like to talk to an admissions representative for admissions support, you can schedule a virtual admissions advising appointment, or contact us by phone at (713)-743-1010, option 4 or by email at Please note that admissions representatives do not provide support with course selection or registration.

And even though we're currently not offering in-person visits, our virtual visits will give you a feel for student life and an in-depth look at the academic colleges. You can also request a call from a UH Student Ambassador  to get more insight into the student experience at UH.

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