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Members of the Salem College community in the fine arts center

We welcome students from across the world. Located in the beautiful East Coast state of North Carolina, Salem College is an hour from the mountains and three hours from the beach. Most international students can get to Salem College with a direct flight, because we sit just 90 minutes from Charlotte International Airport, one of the busiest international airports in the world.

Our campus has been voted among the most beautiful in the United States. Check it out in a virtual tour!

Admission Requirements

Admission decisions are based on a review of your previous school records, including your overall GPA and standardized tests such as the TOEFL, SAT, ACT, or IELTS; a personal essay; two teacher recommendations; and a list of your extracurricular activities.

How Prospective Students are Classified for Admission

Those seeking admission as first-year students must have completed high school or the equivalent. Those seeking admission as transfer students must be well-qualified with 30 academic semester hours or more of college credit from a regionally accredited institution in the United States, or outside the U.S. with transcript evaluation by AACRAO (American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Each course you have completed will be evaluated.

English Language Requirements

A minimum TOEFL score of 79 on the internet version, 213 on the computerized version or 550 on the paper test is required for admission. For more information on TOEFL, please visit the TOEFL website. We also accept IELTS testing and require a score of 6.5.

Conditional Admission

American Language Academy™ (ALA) provides intensive English language program classes for students who require additional English language study prior to beginning their academic studies at Salem. Under an official memorandum of understanding between ALA and Salem College, students may be admitted to Salem College upon completing the ALA course of study in lieu of the TOEFL test, provided that they meet all other Salem admission requirements.

ALA™ Students may receive a Conditional Letter of Admission (CLA) to Salem College upon enrollment in our intensive English program. To apply for admission to American Language Academy™ , please visit or email for more information.

Financial Requirements

BCIS of the United States requires all prospective international students to provide documented evidence of your financial resources before the issuance of the immigration form I-20 (application for F1 student status) or IAP-66 (application for J1 student status). At Salem, the required amount for the first full academic year is US $38,703. This amount is based on our estimate of tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, medical insurance and miscellaneous living expenses. Some financial aid is available for international students; however, the college is unable to provide full scholarships.

Financial Support

We are able to offer limited financial assistance to non-immigrant undergraduate students. If you and your family can contribute toward your educational expenses, and if the academic program you are interested in is offered at Salem, we welcome your application. Please fill out the International Application for Financial Aid and the Certification of Finances (see form downloads below). The majority of your educational expenses must be provided by you and your family.

Salem cannot offer any sponsors to aid in your education. If you have specific questions or concerns about financial aid, please see affordability, e-mail us at or call 011-336-721-2621.

Students from Salem College abroad

Special Services for International Students

To ensure that the focus of your time at Salem College is on learning and extracurricular activities — and not spent stressing over details concerning visa documentation, etc. — Salem will work with you to arrange everything from your F-1 visa status to setting up cultural and social events.

Your health and safety are also of paramount importance to us. Between our excellent Department of Health and Counseling Services and the College’s Department of Public Safety, which is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, we provide you with the comfort and peace of mind you need to excel.

Salem also works with a number of international leaders in international admissions, including Career Abroad Visa and Immigration, Career Mosaic, Edu Plus Counselor, Edwise International, GoCool International, Kanan International, Leap GeeBee EdTech International, MakeStudy (Deepak Enterprises), RIEC Overseas, Studee Ltd, and TransGlobe Education.

Salem College students

How to Apply

  1. Complete the Undergraduate Application (see online application). Salem College also accepts the Common Application. There is no application fee for international students.  After submitting your application, please make sure to send us the other necessary documents listed below.
  2. Send us your completed application, including the essay (in English)
  3. Complete the Certification of Finances Form (see form downloads).
  4. Complete the International Student Financial Aid Application.  International students must submit evidence of sufficient finances to support their studies in the United States using this form.
  5. Provide Official Academic Transcripts.
  6. Provide Teacher Recommendations.
  7. Provide Official TOEFL or SAT scores, or an official certificate of graduation from American Language Academy’s course Level 5. We will accept official school copies of test scores.

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