International Degree Equivalency Guide & Required Academic Credentials
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 US 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.
In the U.S. educational system, bachelor's degree recipients have 16 years of formal education — 12 years of elementary and secondary education plus 4 years of post-secondary study. A bachelor or equivalent degree, as determined by the U.S. Department of Education, normally requires at least 4 but not more than 5 years of full-time equivalent college-level work.
When reviewing academic records from a school outside the U.S., we assess whether the applicant has reached an academic level equivalent to a U.S. bachelor's degree.
Please refer to the graduate admissions list of comparable Bachelor Degree Equivalencies by county of origin.
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:
Note: With few exceptions, international students (including those who were exempted from
English proficiency requirements) are required to sit for an English Placement Exam.
English Language Proficiency
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:
Country of Origin
International applicants from official English language qualifying countries are not required to submit English language proficiency score.
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:
Note: With few exceptions, international students (including those who were exempted from English proficiency requirements) are required to sit for an English Placement Exam.
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. Official transcripts sent directly to academic departments must follow the transcript submission requirements.
Current or former students at the Louisiana State University and A&M College in Baton Rouge do not need to request transcripts. All other schools in the LSU System are required to submit official transcripts.
LSU reserves the right to require official transcripts at any time during the admission process and to rescind any offer of admission made if discrepancies between unofficial and official transcripts are found.
Official vs Unofficial Transcripts
Applicants can submit an official transcript using either of the following options.
- 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 email@example.com. This e-mail address is designed for receipt of submitted transcripts. Do not attempt to correspond through this e-mail address.
- Hard Copy: Newly admitted students have a few options regarding the process for submitting
- Official hard copies sent directly from the institution.
- Official hard copies in a sealed envelope delivered via delivery service (UPS, FedEx, etc.).
- Official hard copies in a sealed envelope delivered by student.
All physical copies of official transcripts can be sent to:Louisiana State University
Office of Graduate Admissions
114 West David Boyd Hall
Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70803
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.
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. Students provisionally admitted to the Graduate School are not permitted to register for a second term until official copies are received.
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."