International Admissions | LSU Graduate School

International Admissions

LSU welcomes and supports all international applicants.

In addition to the Graduate School's admissions requirements, you may need to submit documentation related to your international status. We encourage all international students to make contact with the LSU International Services Office (ISO) for additional support. ISO provides primarily U.S. immigration advisory services to international students regarding their educational, financial, immigration, personal and social concerns in relation to their status in the US. For more information, visit the ISO website or contact ISO directly.

2023 International Degree Requirements

International applicants must submit a credential evaluation from an approved National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) agency and all official transcripts and degree certificate/statements with the original signature of a school official or an original school seal conferring a U.S. equivalent bachelor’s degree. The credential evaluation must be issued within the last calendar year of application to graduate admissions, and should include the award of degree printed on the evaluation unless coursework is still in progress.

International applicants must submit an official or unofficial copy of their credential evaluation to expedite the admissions process and qualify for admission to the Graduate School on a provisional basis. Provisionally admitted students must submit an official transcripts and degree certificate/statement showing the degree awarded within 30 days after classes begin in the semester of entry. If official documents are not submitted 30 days after the first day of class, an admissions hold will be placed on the admitted student’s academic record preventing future registration.

College work from one institution posted on the transcript of another institution will not be accepted. Photocopies or other duplications of a transcript, such as notarized copies, faxed, or scanned documents are not considered official.

Credential Evaluation

Domestic and international applicants to LSU graduate degree programs must submit a credential evaluation of all foreign credentials from an approved National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) agency identifying the degree awarded and grade point average (GPA). A course-by-course evaluation is strongly encouraged for applicants who wish to transfer graduate level coursework. If you are unable to obtain a course-by-evaluation, a general evaluation listing the degree awarded, program completion, and grade point average (GPA) will suffice.

Applicants currently enrolled in coursework must submit a credential evaluation showing any coursework in progress for an admission decision. The final official transcript and degree certificate/statement showing the completion of your degree must be submitted. An updated credential analysis is not required.

Applicants who submit official evaluations approved by NACES must still submit the required official transcript/marksheets and final degree certificate/statement. Official English translation are no longer required.

Bachelor Degree Equivalency

Admission to the Graduate School requires all applicants to possess a U.S. bachelor's degree accredited by the appropriate regional accrediting agency or equivalent. An equivalent non-U.S. degree must be at least 4 but not more than 5 years of full-time U.S. equivalent college-level work, and bachelor's degrees in which the normal 4 years of work are completed in 3 years of full-time U.S. equivalent advanced college-level work.

Please refer to the graduate admissions list of comparable Bachelor Degree Equivalencies by county of origin.


English Language Proficiency

LSU requires every international student to submit official results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or Pearson's Test of English (PTE). Only score results received directly from the testing agency are considered official. Minimum score requirements for admission to the Graduate School are:

  • TOEFL
    • Internet-Based Minimum Score: 79
    • Paper-Based Minimum Score: 550
    • Computer-Based Minimum Score: 213
  • IELTS
    • Minimum Score: 6.5
  • PTE
    • Minimum Score: 59
The minimum score to satisfy the English proficiency requirement must be acquired in a single test. The Graduate School does not recognize Superscoring or MyBest Score as a valid cumulative score for admission purposes. Duolingo is not accepted.

English Language Proficiency Exemptions

U.S. Post-Secondary Degree

Applicants may be exempt from the TOEFL iBT/IELTS/PTE requirements if they have completed one of the following:
  • A bachelor's degree earned from an accredited U.S. institution;
  • A college-level degree showing the completion of post-secondary education in a country where English is the primary official language.
Official transcripts are required showing completion of one of the above before a student can be exempted from the TOEFL iBT/IELTS/PTE requirement. The office of Graduate Student Services reserves the right to require a satisfactory TOEFL iBT/IELTS/PTE score from any applicant.  

Country of Origin

International applicants from official English language qualifying countries are not required to submit English language proficiency score. 

  • American Samoa
  • Bermuda
  • Ghana
  • New Zealand
  • Anguilla
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Gibraltar
  • Nigeria
  • Antigua & Barbuda
  • Canada (except Quebec)
  • Grenada
  • Saint Kitts & Nevis
  • Australia
  • Cayman Islands
  • Guyana
  • Saint Lucia
  • Bahamas
  • Dominica
  • Ireland
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Barbados
  • Federated States of Micronesia
  • Jamaica
  • Turks & Caicos Islands
  • Belize
  • Gambia
  • Liberia
  • United Kingdom

Note: With few exceptions, international students (including those who were exempted from English proficiency requirements) are required to sit for an English Placement Exam.


Official vs Unofficial Transcripts

An official transcript, whether a physical copy or a secure .pdf document, ensures authenticity and content accuracy. Official transcripts must contain the University's seal and the signature of the University Registrar, Principal, Controller of Examinations, or Minister of Education. You must provide transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions for us to process your application. A transcript is considered official if it is sent directly from the applicant’s home institution to The Graduate School in one of the following ways:

  • Electronic: We accept electronic submissions of official transcripts over a secure network from a service such as Parchment, National Student Clearinghouse, SPEEDE, eScript-Safe, or your institution’s electronic delivery system. If using one of these services, please have transcripts delivered to gradtranscripts@lsu.edu.
  • Mail: A sealed original transcript sent from the issuing institution by postal mail directly to graduate admissions. Transcripts sent directly to departments must be submitted to graduate admissions sealed from the applicant or department representative.
  • In-Person: Applicants or departments may hand deliver with sealed copies of their official records to the Office of Graduate Admissions. Envelopes which have been opened or appear to have been tampered with will be considered unofficial.
  • LSU Departments:  Official transcripts sent directly to academic departments must follow the transcript submission requirements. Unsealed transcripts submitted from prospective students to academic departments are not considered official. If a department submits an unsealed official transcript, graduate admissions must verify the transcript was official upon receipt.
  • LSU A&M Current/Former Students: Applicants who have previously attended LSU A&M (LSU Baton Rouge) do not need to request their LSU A&M official transcript. All other non-A&M LSU system schools transcripts must be submitted.

Official hard copy transcripts can be mailed or hand delivered to:

Louisiana State University
Office of Graduate Admissions
114 West David Boyd Hall
Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70803​​​​​​

Applicants can submit unofficial transcripts to expedite the admissions process. Please note, these copies of transcripts are not considered official. All admitted students are required to submit official transcripts. Applicants may qualify for admission to the Graduate School on a provisional basis until official transcripts are received. All provisionally admitted students must submit official transcripts within 30 days after classes begin in the semester of entry. If official transcripts are not submitted 30 days after the first day of class, an admissions hold will be placed on the admitted student’s academic record preventing future registration. 

Unsealed transcripts submitted from prospective students to academic departments are not considered official. If a department submits an unsealed official transcript, the Office of Graduate Admissions must verify the transcript was official upon receipt.

Photocopies or other duplications of a transcript, such as notarized copies, faxed, or scanned documents are not considered official.

Please Note: The official transcript requirement will remain "Outstanding" on your Slate application checklist. However, this will not prevent your application from proceeding to "Departmental Review."