Search within:

How to Apply as a Freshman

Ask any Bobcat about their time at Ohio University, and they'll fondly share stories about their experience. Why? Because the experiences you have at OHIO will stay with you for life. You'll become a part of a community that will cheer on your ambitions, equipping you to excel during your four years on campus, in your future career and beyond! With more than 250 academic majors, minors, and certificate programs, you're sure to find a place here.

The information on this page and in our Frequently Asked Questions will help you learn how to prepare for admission to Ohio University.

Admission Criteria

Undergraduate Admissions operates on a holistic, selective review and looks for evidence of academic preparation in a strong college-preparatory curriculum when reviewing applications for admission. We consider the following criteria:

  • Strength of curriculum
  • Performance in curriculum
  • Class rank
  • Grade point average
  • ACT and/or SAT scores (if provided)

Ohio University has implemented a test-optional pathway for admission to the Athens campus. Learn more about the test-optional pathway.

Learn about what you can do throughout high school

Criteria for More Selective Programs

Some of our colleges and programs have selective criteria above and beyond general admission guidelines. These include Biological Sciences, the College of Business, the Russ College of Engineering and Technology, the College of Fine Arts, Honors Tutorial College, the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism and the School of Nursing.

View selective program admission criteria

Academic Profile

The following items indicate the average ranges of the middle 50 percent of our fall 2023 freshman class in a variety of academic areas:

  • Top 11-43% of their graduating high school classes
  • Average composite ACT score of 22-28*
  • Average combined SAT score of 1100-1280 (math + evidence-based reading and writing)*
  • Average high school grade point average of 3.65 (on a 4.0 scale)

*Beginning with the 2021 class, test score values only reflect scores that were used in admissions decisions.

Suggested Coursework

Ohio University strongly recommends that all applicants complete the following college-preparatory high school coursework:

  • 4 units of English
  • 4 units of mathematics (including Algebra II or above)
  • 3 units of science
  • 3 units of social studies
  • 2 units of foreign language
  • 1 unit of visual or performing arts
  • 4 additional elective units

Application Materials

In addition to your application and $50 fee, you must have an official high school transcript submitted by your high school counselor. These items can be submitted electronically or mailed to:

Undergraduate Admissions
Chubb Hall 120
1 Ohio University Drive
Athens OH 45701

If you choose to submit SAT (school code 1593) or ACT (school code 3314) scores, they must be submitted directly from the testing agency or from your high school. Learn more about the test-optional pathway for freshman applicants to the Athens campus.

You can send optional application materials, such as essays, letters of recommendation, and/or lists of extra-curricular interests and activities to the address above or to

Home School Information

Ohio University welcomes applications for admission from students who have a home school background. Our home school review process is designed to recognize the unique experience of a home education while ensuring preparation for academic success at OHIO.

View the home school admission policy


Ready to apply? Ohio University is a member of The Common Application. Applicants are encouraged to apply using the Common App, which opens annually in August. For freshman applicants who do not want to use the Common App,  please complete the alternative online application. We also offer printable applications for those who need them.

Official high school transcripts and optional standardized test scores must be sent directly from the testing agency or from your high school.


CommonApp logo