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International Students

Am I considered an International Student?

At Barnard, the term "international student" may apply to:

  1. a citizen of a country other than the U.S. who has been educated abroad
  2. a citizen of a country other than the U.S. who has been educated in the U.S.
  3. a U.S. citizen who has been educated abroad
  4. a U.S. citizen or citizen of a country other than the U.S. who has been educated at an international school which follows a system similar to the U.S.

Our enrolling student statistics for the Class of 2018 by citizenship is as follows:

International Citizens: 7.1%
US Citizens Educated Abroad: 2.7%
Permanent Residents: 3.7%

Perspective in Context

Applications for admission to Barnard College are always read with careful consideration of contextual information that might affect student course selection, i.e. the rigor of the curriculum, a student’s individual life circumstances, and, in the case of international students (as defined by all the categories above), especially, global and cultural perspective. The Barnard Office of Admissions acknowledges that students who live abroad may have education experiences that differ from their peers who studied in the U.S. and recognize this important factor as we review applications. We also value the fact that international applicants, regardless of citizenship, have much to offer from their backgrounds and experiences as global citizens.

Application Requirements

The Barnard community includes undergraduates from all over the world. Barnard welcomes applications from international students following the same application procedure and presenting the same credentials as domestic candidates. Fluency in the English language is essential for admission. Please submit materials as described under the Application Requirements for First-Years or Transfers (no separate International Student application is required). In some cases, additional credentials may be required, as described below.

Secondary School Curriculum and Credentials

Barnard will expect each applicant to challenge herself in the most demanding curriculum available. In order to help us understand your transcript better, please note the following:

  • Students must request that their high school and/or college send an official TRANSCRIPT or EXAM RESULTS via e-docs or mail. (Certificates or copies of certificates are NOT required and should NOT be submitted)
  • Students with transcripts and official documents not issued in English need to provide certified English translations along with the official documents.
  • Students who apply for admission during their last year of secondary school should clearly state the name of the certificate or degree they expect to receive and when they will receive it.
  • Students who have taken external national or board examinations should submit examination results as well as transcripts for each year of secondary-level study.
  • Students should not submit other academic or activity certificates.

Required Testing for International Students

All students are required to submit official results from either the College Board SAT Reasoning Test with two SAT Subject Tests (Subject Tests are not required for International Transfer students) OR results from the ACT Assessment Test with Writing. Learn more here about the SAT exam and the ACT exam.

In addition to SAT/ACT requirements, students whose primary language is not English and who have studied in English for less than five years should submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).  Contact us with questions if you are unsure whether these exams would be required.

If students are able to travel to a country where the SAT is offered, it is strongly recommended that they do their best to sit for the required testing. (For students in China, for example, the SAT is offered in Hong Kong and the ACT is offered at several sites in China. We also recognize that SAT exams have been restricted in Korea this year.  Please let us know if you have specific questions and we will consider minor adjustments to testing requirements based upon circumstances for international students.)

The most competitive candidates for admission generally receive score of 7 or higher on the IELTS or a TOEFL score of 600 or above on the written test, and 100 or above for the internet-based test. 


An interview with a representative of the Barnard community (senior interviewer, staff member, alumna) is an option available, but not required, for first-year applicants in their senior year of high school.  International students are invited schedule an interview online if they plan to be on campus between mid-June and mid-December.

On-campus interviews for applicants plannign to enroll Fall 2015 are no longer available.

If students are unable to travel to campus, it may be possible to arrange an off-campus interview with an alumna near your home between mid-September and December. Alumnae interviews take place between mid-September and December and are available only to students who live outside the tri-state area. Interviewees must be first-year applicants in their senior year of high school.

The deadline to request alumnae interviews has passed.

Please do not wait until you submit your application before requesting an interview!

For students in China, we often have far fewer alumnae interviewers than we have requests. Additionally, the time difference between the US and Asia further complicates our ability to offer Skype interviews, so we have connected with two organizations who offer comprehensive interviews. For one fee, either company will send your interview video/report to all of the colleges on your list. Please contact the two organizations below directly for more information.


If you are concerned that fees would present a hardship for you and your family, please do not hesitate to contact us for an alternate solution.  Please contact us at international@barnard.edu.

Visa and Financial Information (once admitted to Barnard)

In order to enter the United States for the purpose of study, admitted Barnard international citizens will need a visa—usually an F-1 Student Visa. A link to the I-20 request form will be sent to all admitted international citizens to be used in obtaining this visa. To apply for it, admitted students will be required to submit to the United States Embassy or Consulate in their own country: 1) a valid Form I-20 Certificate of Eligibility (sent from the college where you intend to enroll, once you are admitted and indicate you plan to enroll), 2) a valid passport, and 3) evidence of financial support. If an admitted student is already studying in the U.S., the following two documents will also be required: 1) SEVIS number, 2) a copy of any existing I-20 form (an F-1 transfer certification).  If all documentation is in order, an I-20 Certificate of Eligibility will be provided. Information noted here, including financial certification, does NOT need to be submitted with the application for admission.

Financial Aid for International Students

Barnard’s financial aid program supports the College's institutional priorities of access, quality, and diversity. All Barnard aid is based on financial need and we are committed to offering the College's educational opportunities to as many students as possible. Unfortunately, limited federal and state aid funds severely restrict Barnard's ability to cover the need of all eligible international applicants. A small number of need-based scholarships are available to international students each year. Selection for these scholarships is extremely competitive and, given that Barnard meets full demonstrated need for admitted students, the review of applications for admissions for International Students is need sensitive. International students with financial need should review International Financial Aid information and submit the appropriate forms by the dates required.

Students who are not U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents are considered international or foreign applicants for financial aid purposes. However, if a student’s parents file a U.S. federal income tax return, the family should complete a CSS PROFILE Application instead of the College Board International Student Financial Aid Application.

College Board PROFILE Form for International Students

Students who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents are considered international applicants for financial aid purposes. Given that international applicants are not eligible for federal and state aid resources, Barnard’s ability to assist all eligible international applicants with institutional funds alone is seriously constrained. Barnard College has designated a small fund to provide scholarships for entering first-year international students. Consideration for these awards is extremely competitive. Applicants who wish to be considered for aid should complete the College Board PROFILE form for International Students by February 1 and must submit documentation of foreign income to Financial Aid. Please note: International students who have not applied for aid at the time of admission should not expect financial assistance during future years at Barnard. In addition, please note that we are unable to assist transfer international students.

United World College Students

United World College (UWC) students bring a wealth of experience from all over the world to the Barnard College community. Through a unique partnership, any UWC graduate admitted to Barnard with financial need will receive a scholarship of up to $10,000 provided by the Shelby Davis Fund. Please note that UWC graduates will be evaluated for need using the same guidelines as all other Barnard financial aid applicants.