A freshman student is defined as a student who has not enrolled in a postsecondary institution anytime after the summer following high school graduation.

A student may apply to Lake Superior State University anytime throughout their final year of high school. The best time to apply is at the beginning of a student’s senior year. Applications are processed continuously. When all necessary materials have arrived, the student will be notified of a decision as soon as possible.

The primary factors used to determine admission are cumulative grade point average (GPA) and high school course curriculum. LSSU recommends students follow a college preparatory curriculum mirroring the Michigan Merit Curriculum. The middle 50 percent of the entering freshmen class have high school GPAs ranging from 2.80 to 3.70. Students with a high school GPA of 2.0 or less will be reviewed through our holistic review process. Letters of recommendation or personal statements are considered, but not required. Students are encouraged to submit any additional materials that may aid the Admissions Office in the decision-making process where unusual circumstances may have impacted high school performance.

A student’s admission will be contingent upon satisfactory completion of current coursework and receipt of a final high school transcript with verification of graduation from an accredited school or passing of the GED. All transcripts and/or test score reports must be mailed from the high school guidance office or testing agency directly to Lake Superior State University to be considered official. Transcripts delivered via approved platforms will also be considered official. Please contact the Admissions Office for more information regarding approved current electronic delivery methods.

LSSU assigns each student an individual student identification number. A student number will be provided upon admittance. While LSSU does not use social security numbers for student identification purposes, the university does use it to match an application record with other permanent records. Financial aid applications will not be processed without a student’s social security number. Social security numbers should be included on the application for admission. Canadian and international student applicants should not report his or her social insurance number. LSSU will use the assigned student identification number.

Anchor Advantage Admission Policy

New freshmen applicants with a high school GPA of 2.0 or less and new transfer applicants with a combined previous institution(s) GPA of less than 2.0 will be reviewed through a holistic review process. The Admissions Committee may require additional documentation in the form of essays or recommendations. Applicants are encouraged to submit additional materials that may aid the Admissions Committee in the decision-making process. The committee may recommend students for admission with required academic support into the Anchor Advantage Program.

Students admitted through the Anchor Advantage Policy:

  • May enroll in no more than 13 credit hours for two consecutive semesters (6 credit hours in the Summer.)
  • May enroll in no more than one online class per semester (no online classes may be taken, if starting in the summer term.)
  • Are assigned an academic advisor through their major department
  • Are assigned an Anchor Advantage Coordinator through the library and Academic Services.

Students admitted through the Anchor Advantage Policy must:

  • Earn a minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA while in conditional status
  • Meet with their departmentally assigned academic advisor each semester
  • Meet with their Anchor Advantage coordinator and follow the academic support plan outlined by their coordinator.

After the completion of two consecutive semesters and earning a cumulative 2.0 GPA or higher the student will transition to regular status and the semester credit hour limitation will be removed.

Early/Middle College

Students participating in Early/Middle College 13th year programs are considered first-time in any college (FTIAC) students for admissions. Lake Superior State University uses a holistic review process and will consider all coursework, both high school, and college, in the evaluative process for admission. Early/Middle college students are considered FTIAC with advanced standing for credits earned.

Early/Middle College or Dual Enrollment from Another Institution

Students participating in early/middle college or dual enrollment in high school must have official transcripts from the college or university awarding course credit sent directly to Lake Superior State University. Credit will not be granted without an official transcript. Contact the college or university’s Registrar’s Office to have an official transcript sent. Transcripts sent by facsimile or hand-delivered are not considered official. All transcripts become the property of Lake Superior State University and are not returnable.

Home-Schooled Students

Lake Superior State University does not have separate requirements for home-schooled applicants. Like all applicants, home-schooled students will need to provide a transcript of his or her high school coursework. Admission will be based on high school grade point average and coursework completed.

Transfer Students

A transfer student is defined as a student who enrolls in a postsecondary institution anytime after the summer following high school graduation.

Transfer students must possess a 2.00 cumulative college GPA for regular admission. Students below a 2.00 cumulative college GPA, please consult the Anchor Advantage Policy.

Students seeking federal financial aid need to supply a final high school transcript (or GED score report) if transferring fewer than 60 credit hours without an earned associate degree.

Contact the University’s Registrar’s Office or high school guidance office to have an official transcript mailed to Lake Superior State University. Transcripts sent via facsimile or hand-delivered are not considered official. All transcripts become the property of Lake Superior State University and are not returnable.

Transfer Credit Evaluations

Official evaluation of transfer credit is made upon acceptance to LSSU. The Admissions Office will help with an unofficial transcript review upon request.

If a course taken at another institution is not offered at LSSU, elective credit may be granted.

To receive transfer credit, students will need to earn a grade of C- (1.7) or higher.

The Admissions Office completes transfer credit evaluations based on equivalencies determined by the faculty. The decision on courses and transfer credit granted may be appealed first to the academic dean and then to the provost.

Articulation Transfer Agreement

Secondary Articulated Credit

Through statewide and other State of Michigan Articulation agreements, Lake Superior State University partners with the Michigan Department of Education, the Michigan Office of Career and Technical Education, and Michigan High Schools to work with students who would like to transfer qualifying high school and Career and Technical Education credits. Articulation agreements are formal contracts between these parties and LSSU that recognize credits earned through secondary programs aligned with required state standards and technical skills. Credits that meet these contractual criteria are transferable to LSSU for specified degree programs, and as determined by the faculty of those specific programs.

Articulation agreements and applications for articulated transfer of credits are available on the Provost Office webpages at

Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA)

In order to satisfy the MTA, students must successfully complete at least 30 credits from an approved list of courses at a sending institution with at least a grade of 2.00 in each course. These credits, which will be certified by a sending institution, should be completed according to the following distributions:

  • One course in English composition
  • A second course in English composition or one course in communication
  • One course in mathematics
  • Two courses in social sciences (from two disciplines)
  • Two courses in humanities and fine arts (from two disciplines excluding studio and performance classes)
  • Two courses in natural sciences including at least one with laboratory experience (from two disciplines)

Students admitted to Lake Superior State University who have the MTA stamp on his or her transcript are recognized as having completed the general education requirements at Lake Superior State University.

Students who do not complete the entire block of courses required by the MTA will receive credit for the courses they do complete on the basis of individual course evaluation and established transfer equivalencies.

It is important to note that the MTA is not the best fit for all programs. There are many programs in Michigan for which the MTA is not a good fit. Students are encouraged to work with their advisors at their destination institution (LSSU) in order to select a path that is best for them.

MACRAO Transfer Agreement

Important Notice:  MACRAO Transfer Agreement sunset in Fall 2019.

Michigan community college students admitted to Lake Superior State University who have the MACRAO stamp on their transcript are recognized as having completed the general education requirements at Lake Superior State University.

Residency Requirement

There is no limit to the number of transfer credits allowed from other institutions but students are required to complete LSSU’s Residency Requirements. (Please see degree requirements)

Former Students

Former Lake Superior State University students who miss one or more semesters (not including summer) must submit an application for readmission prior to the semester of re-entry. If a student attended another college during the period of absence, the student must submit official transcripts and meet LSSU’s transfer student admissions requirements. Students who were academically dismissed must meet the requirements for re-enrollment or appeal to the Scholastic Standards Committee.

Guest Students

Students enrolled at another college or university may be admitted to LSSU for one semester as a guest student. An extension of one additional semester may be granted for extenuating circumstances. If students intend to enroll full-time for more than one semester, they must submit an application for admission as a transfer student. Guest students assume responsibility for determining if LSSU courses apply to their program of study at the college from which the student intends to graduate.

Ontario Students

Ontario student applicants must satisfy entrance requirements comparable to those of United States students. Please refer to the “Freshmen” and “Transfer” sections of the catalog for details. Ontario students are not required to take the SAT/ACT for admission consideration.

If a student has completed grade 13 or OAC courses before September 1990, he or she will receive transfer credit at the university for each course in which the final mark was at least a 60 percent. Transfer credit is not given for any OAC courses taken after September 1990. However, completion of OAC courses prepares some students to earn credit through testing. See the section titled “Credit by Examination”.

Admitted Ontario students must provide verification of ability to pay in order to receive a Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant (F-1) Student Status (Form I-20) required to attend a university in the United States. This is not an admissions requirement for Ontario students; however, an I-20 form is required for a student to cross into the U.S. to attend classes. Please refer to “Verification of Ability to Pay” section in the catalog for details. If a student is a permanent resident or able to be in the U.S. with another form of documentation, the student is required to submit a copy of this documentation.

If a student is a Canadian Aboriginal or Native American (excluding METIS) with at least 50% blood quantum and has J-treaty privileges (carries a tribal ID), the student is exempt from needing an I-20 form. The student must provide a copy of his or her tribal ID and an official tribal-issued letter showing proof of blood quantum.

Ontario students planning to attend part-time (fewer than 12 credit hours) and commute to the university will be issued a new I-20 form each semester upon the verification of the payment of tuition and fees, or after submission of financial information as outlined above.

Ontario students are required to provide a copy of a valid Provincial Health Card (both sides) verifying coverage under a provincial health care program. LSSU highly recommends that students purchase adequate health insurance coverage while in the U.S. Students, however, may request to waive the purchase of additional health and accident insurance.

International Students (Excluding Ontario Students)

LSSU recommends international applicants submit all application materials by July 15 for the fall semester and by November 15 for the spring semester. Students will be required to provide official transcripts evaluated by World Evaluation Service (WES), Education Credential Evaluators (ECE) or Spantran on a comprehensive course-by-course basis. This applies to first-time in college students and transfer students.

International applicants must also provide verification of ability to pay, proof of English language proficiency, and purchase health and accident insurance through the university-sponsored program. Please refer to those sections for specific information.

Applicants are not considered admitted to LSSU until all required documents have been provided to the university and they have received an official letter of acceptance. Following the letter of acceptance, the I-20 form is sent, as required by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Services.

If a student is a permanent resident or able to be in the U.S. with another form of documentation, a copy of this documentation is required.

International students are required to purchase health and accident insurance through the university-sponsored program.

Verification of Ability to Pay – Ontario and International Students

The U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) require that LSSU have verification of a student’s ability to pay for tuition/books and expenses before a Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant (F-1) Student Status (I-20) can be issued. This form is required for international students to cross the border into the United States.

An acceptable financial document must have been submitted not more than nine (9) months before the term the student intends to enroll at LSSU. The document needs to be current within the last 90 days. Inclusion of false information in the financial statements is grounds for dismissal. Verification may be documented by the following: personal savings or verification of loans or scholarships received, a parent or sponsor, government or sponsoring agency, or by LSSU anticipated support.

As of September 1, 2004, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has implemented a rule requiring F-1 visa applicants to pay a one-time fee to supplement the administration and maintenance costs of the Student and Exchange Information System (SEVIS). Because LSSU will be issuing the student an initial I-20 form, the student will be required to pay this SEVIS fee. Information about payment of the fee and the processing of an I-20 form upon entry to the U.S. will be provided to the student upon receipt of the initial I-20 form. Students may also check our website for additional information:

Proof of English Proficiency

Proof of English proficiency is required for admission to LSSU as an international student. English proficiency can be proven in several ways:

  • Score 500 or above on the paper-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or a score of 61 on the internet-based TOEFL. Please use institutional code 1421 to report scores directly to LSSU.
  • Score of 72 on the Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB). Write:
    English Language Institute, MELAB Testing
    3020 North University Building
    University of Michigan
    Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1057, U.S.A.
  • Completion of Level 112 at any ELS Language Center located in the U.S. More information can be found at: or at, 1-609-750-3500 or
  • APIEL – Advanced Placement English Language Test with a score of 3 or higher.
  • SAT critical reading score of 480 or higher for tests taken before March 1, 2016, minimum overall score of 965 or higher, ACT equivalent is 20. For SAT tests taken after May 2016 an evidence-based reading and writing score of 510.
  • Completion of two (2) years of study at a school, college or university located in an English-speaking country.
  • IELTS – International English Language Testing System with a score of 6.0 or higher.
  • PTE Academic test score of 44 or higher.
  • Duolingo Score of 85 or higher.

Undocumented Students

Students who are undocumented are considered domestic students, not international students for admissions consideration. They must meet regular admission requirements. Undocumented students are not eligible for financial aid or scholarships.


All new students (including transfer students) attending the main campus are required to attend and participate in orientation. Orientation is when students learn important information on academic policies and procedures that students are expected to follow while attending LSSU. Students will also learn about the wide range of services available to assist them in having a successful university experience.

Part-time Enrollment

Students may enroll as part-time students and take up to 11 credit hours per semester in courses for which they have sufficient academic background. United States citizens or permanent residents attending part-time who are not seeking financial aid, a degree, or certificate, do not have to formally apply for admission.

Canadian (commuter) students wishing to attend part-time must apply for admission and be accepted into a degree program. All other international students must maintain full-time enrollment (12+ credit hours) to maintain F-1 status.

Part-time students (non-degree) are not assigned a faculty advisor. Students are encouraged to seek assistance in selecting courses from the appropriate academic departments.

Current high school students should refer to the section regarding early/middle college.

Career and Technical Education

Lake Superior State University recognizes the excellent academic achievement of students completed through the Career and Technical Education programs throughout the state by awarding university credit for work completed while in high school. Through this partnership, students are able to begin their university studies by completing their CTE curriculum. Lake Superior State University is a proud partner with the Michigan Department of Education, Michigan High Schools, and Michigan Career and Technical Education Centers in providing direct pathways for students to continue with post-secondary education. Through coordinated Articulation Agreements, LSSU assists students to realize a seamless and systematic transition, maximizing the use of resources and minimizing duplication of content as students move from a secondary to postsecondary educational experience.

Credit by Examination

A student may earn university credit by examination. The university grants credit from Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate (IB), College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and departmental exams. If a student is already attending Lake Superior State University, they may earn credit through both CLEP and departmental exams.

Students must meet the following criteria before credit by examination will be entered on the transcript:

  • be an admitted full-time student, and
  • be enrolled at Lake Superior State University.

Advanced Placement Program (AP)

Advanced Placement Exams are administered through high schools each May. LSSU grants credit in select AP exams passed with a score of three or higher. If an essay is part of an individual exam, it must be submitted to university testing services for evaluation. To receive credit, the essay must be satisfactory and the student must have a minimum score of three on the test. Credit for AP is granted as shown on the table.

International Baccalaureate (IB)

Lake Superior State University offers college credit for students who complete IB coursework with strong results. LSSU will grant credit only for Higher Level exams and scores of 5 or above. Credit for IB is granted as shown on the table.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Students may take CLEP exams at a computer testing center, including Lake Superior State University’s Testing Services. LSSU offers CLEP exams by appointment. Credit for CLEP is granted as shown on the table.

Students may receive credit toward specified courses that meet general education requirements. CLEP general and subject examination credit may not be used to repeat courses previously taken unless permission is granted from the academic department offering the course.

Grades for general examinations are recorded as credit without grade points. Credit may be earned for individual courses by passing CLEP subject examinations.

Dantes ACE Credit

LSSU is proud to accept credit for prior military experiences. Once LSSU receives an official transcript, the transcripts (including military training) will be evaluated and credit will be granted based on American Council on Education (ACE) recommendations. If a student’s Dantes equivalence is not listed, contact the Registrar’s Office for further review. Credit is granted as shown on the table.

Departmental Exams

Departments may provide their own examinations for certain courses. Students must have the written approval of the appropriate dean to take the examination. The Credit by Departmental Exam Application Form can be found online and in Anchor Access. There is a fee charged per credit hour. An examination grade of 2.00 or better is required for credit to be earned. Credit earned by exam is recorded as transfer credit on the student’s transcript. Some universities may not accept transfer credit earned by departmental exam.

Note: Information in the admissions section of the catalog is for information only and not part of an enrollment contract.