Language Requirements

All international applicants are required to submit an official and current TOEFL or IELTS score report, with the following exceptions:

  • Applicants transferring from an approved U.S. institution with 30 or more credit hours and acceptable GPA;
  • Applicants demonstrating English-language proficiency using methods approved by University Admissions, including completion of a certified ELS program or Applicants with a degree from an accredited English-language university in the U.S. or another English-speaking country from the following list of countries:
    Antigua, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Barbuda, Belize, Bermuda, Canada (except Quebec), Dominica, England, Eritrea, Fiji, Ghana, Grand Cayman Islands, Grenada, Ireland, Israel, Jamaica, Kenya, Malawi, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & Grenadines, Scotland, South Africa, Trinidad & Tobago, Virgin Islands, Wales
  • Applicants with a diploma from a U.S. high school;

The required TOEFL scores for regular NMSU admission:

  • 68 on the iBT or 520 on the paper-based test for applicants to undergraduate degree programs.**
  • 79 on the iBT or 550 on the paper-based test for applicants to graduate degree programs.**

**Academic departments reserve the right to require higher TOEFL/IELTS standards.

The required IELTS scores for regular NMSU admission:

  • 6.0 overall for undergraduate applicants.
  • 6.5 overall for graduate applicants.

Prospective students who do not meet these language requirements can pursue a TOEFL waiver at The Center for English Language Programs (CELP).  Students who successfully complete the Academic (third) level of CELP courses will be considered as having achieved English proficiency equivalent to the TOEFL or IELTS score required by NMSU for admission.  For more information on CELP, please visit CELP.

Applicants may be admitted with scores lower than those listed above and in such cases would be conditional based on the TOEFL or IELTS score.

  • International Student and Scholar Services
  • (575) 646-2834
  • Breland Hall, Room 152
  • MSC 3567 / P.O. Box 30001, Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001


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