Undergraduate Information

Undergraduate CATALOG

It is the responsibility of the student to become informed and to observe all regulations and procedures required by the program the student is pursuing. Ignorance of a rule does not constitute a basis for waiving that rule. The Undergraduate Catalog, current at the time of the student's most recent admission, gives the academic requirements the student must meet to graduate. However, a student can change to the requirements in a later catalog published while the student is enrolled as an undergraduate. Changes to administrative policies and procedures become effective for all students as soon as the campus community is notified of the changes. The Undergraduate Catalog is available to students in electronic format. Electronic versions of the Undergraduate Catalog may be updated more frequently to reflect changes approved by, and communicated to, the campus community. As such, students are encouraged to refer to the most recently available electronic version of the Undergraduate Catalog. This version is available at the CSM website. The electronic version of the Undergraduate Catalog is considered the official version of this document. In case of disagreement between the electronic and print versions (if available), the electronic version will take precedence.

Admission Requirements

Colorado School of Mines seeks to admit a diverse and dynamic student population representative of the state of Colorado, the nation and beyond. CSM admits students who have demonstrated the ability to accomplish classroom and laboratory work and benefit from our programs. The decision to admit a student is based on our confidence in one's ability to earn a degree at CSM. Criteria considered in evaluating students include:

  1. pattern of course work in high school or college,
  2. grades earned in those courses,
  3. ACT or SAT test scores,
  4. rank in class, and
  5. other available test scores,
  6. other factors and characteristics of a successful student.

No single criterion for admission is used; however, the most important factor generally is the academic record and rigor in high school or college.

The admission requirements below are minimum requirements for consideration and  may change after a catalog has been finalized. Admission is competitive and not guaranteed. The Board of Trustees, CSM governing board, reserves the right to deviate from published admission requirements. In such cases, changes in admission policy would be widely publicized.


Admission is competitive. The minimum requirements for admission consideration for all high school graduates who have not attended a college or university are as follows:

  1. An applicant must be a graduate of an accredited high school.
  2. An applicant should rank in the upper quartile of their graduating class. Consideration will be given to applicants below this level on evidence of strong motivation, superior test scores, and recommendation from principal or counselor.
  3. The following 17 units of secondary school work must be completed upon graduation from high school:
    Advanced Mathematics (including Trigonometry)1.0
    History or Social Studies3.0
    Academic Elective2.0
    Laboratory Science3.0
    Foreign Language1.0
    Total Semester Hrs17.0
    One unit of laboratory science must be either chemistry or physics. The second and third units may be chemistry, physics, biology, zoology, botany, geology, etc. with laboratory. Both physics and chemistry are recommended for two of the three required units. General Science is not acceptable as a science unit, however it is acceptable as an academic elective unit.
  4. The 2 units of academic electives (social studies, mathematics, English, science, or foreign language) must be acceptable to the applicant’s high school to meet graduation requirements. For applicants submitting GED Equivalency Diplomas, these units may be completed by the GED test.
  5. Applicants from the United States and Canada are required to submit the scores of either the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT-I or SAT-R) of the College Entrance Examination Board or the American College Test (ACT) battery. Applications for either the SAT or ACT may be obtained by consulting with one's high school counselor, or by contacting:

    Educational Testing Service
    P.O. Box 592
    Princeton, NJ 08541 (for the SAT)

    or to the: American College Testing Program
    P.O. Box 168
    Iowa City, IA 52243 (for the ACT)

    You may also register online at www.collegeboard.com (SAT) and www.act.org (ACT).

Transfer Students

Admission is competitive. An applicant to CSM is considered to be a transfer student if he or she has enrolled in coursework at another college after graduating from high school. The minimum requirements for admission consideration for all transfer students are as follows:

  1. Students transferring from another college or university must have completed the same high school course requirements as entering freshmen. A transcript of the applicant’s high school record is required. ACT or SAT test scores are not required if the student has completed a minimum of 30 credit hours of college credit.
  2. Applicants must present official college transcripts from all colleges attended. Applicants must have an overall, cumulative college grade point average of 2.75 or better. Students presenting a lower GPA will be given careful consideration and acted on individually.
  3. An applicant who cannot re-enroll at the institution from which he or she wishes to transfer, or from any previously attended institution because of scholastic record or other reason will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  4. Completed or "in progress" college courses which meet CSM graduation requirements are eligible for transfer credit if the institution is regionally accredited, and the course is not remedial or vocational, and the grade earned is a "C" or better.  For more information see: http://catalog.mines.edu/undergraduate/undergraduateinformation/academicregulations/

Former Students

The minimum admission requirements for those students who have previously attended CSM are as follows:

  1. Any student who has attended another college or university since last enrolling at CSM must re-apply for admission through the Admissions Office.
  2. Any student who did not complete the semester immediately preceding the beginning of the period for which he or she wishes to enroll must be re-admitted to CSM by the Admissions Office.
  3. A former student, returning after a period of suspension, must apply for admission to the Admissions Office and must furnish an approval for such re-enrollment from the Readmissions Committee of Colorado School of Mines. Appropriate forms to apply for admission may be obtained from the Admissions Office. Official transcripts for all coursework completed while away from Mines must be submitted to the Registrar's Office for review of transferability of the credit.

Exchange Students

All students participating in the CSM Exchange Program (coming to CSM and CSM students going abroad) must be enrolled in a minimum of 15 semester credit hours at CSM or the foreign exchange university.

International Students

For purposes of admission, international applicants are students in a non-immigrant status who are not U.S. citizens or do not have approved and finalized U.S. permanent residence, refugee status or political asylum. International students usually need an F1 or J1 visa to study in the United States. 

Generally, international applicants seeking admission to Colorado School of Mines must meet the same academic standards for admission as those required of American applicants. Admission is competitive. There are wide variations, however, between educational systems throughout the world that make exact comparisons of educational standards difficult. International applicants are selected on the basis of their prior academic work, probability of success in the chosen curriculum (as evidenced by prior work in the academic area involved) and proof of English proficiency. After admission but prior to enrollment, certification of adequate financial resources is required.

International applicants must submit a completed international application form; a $50 nonrefundable international document processing fee; translated secondary schooling records, and/or a credentials evaluation report; notarized affidavit of financial sponsorship; and when applicable, translated college transcripts.

TOEFL/English Proficiency

Student applicants whose primarily language is not English, must prove proficiency in the English language by achieving one of the following:

  1. A TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score of 550 on the paper-based test, or a score of 79 on the internet Based TOEFL (iBT).
    Subject Internet TOEFL (iBT) Paper TOEFL (PBT)
    Reading 20 54
    Writing 17 55
    Listening 21 55
    Speaking 21 N/A
    Total 79 550
  2. An IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Score of 6.5, with no band below a 6.0.
  3. Pearson Test of English/PTE Academic: Minimum overall score of 53 with no communicative skills score below 50.
  4. Transferable credit from an accredited US institution of higher education equivalent to 30 credits or more including 6 credits of freshman English composition at a U.S. college or university with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.

The above English Proficiency requirement applies to students currently studying in the United States and for students outside the country.

Advanced Credit for International Evaluation

The following methods are used by Colorado School of Mines to validate the awarding of advanced standing credit for international students who have completed work in their home countries at the postsecondary level:

  1. Credit is granted based upon recommendation by recognized academic publications, primarily provided by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers.
  2. Courses are evaluated by a comparable credit-granting department at Colorado School of Mines. 

Enrollment Requirement - English Language

All new students whose primary language is not English must demonstrate English Language proficiency before enrolling for the first time at the university. This requirement applies to international and non-international, permanent residents, immigrants, transfer and non-transfer students alike.

Enrollment Requirement - All Admitted Students

All admissions are ultimately contingent upon successful completion and submission of final transcripts reflecting academic achievement similar to assessment at the time of admission. Students are expected to continue to prepare at a similar level of academic rigor, and with similar or better results as the enrollment date approaches. If final transcripts/documents are received that reflect information different from the admission assessment, Colorado School of Mines reserves the right to review the admission offer again, and to take appropriate action. This may include a change in conditions or terms of admission, or a rescission of the admission offer.

Fraudulent Applications

Individuals who withhold or provide fraudulent information on applications for undergraduate admissions or readmissions are subject to immediate dismissal from the university. The decision for immediate dismissal will be made by the Associate Vice President of Enrollment Management and/or the Director of International Admissions. This decision will be made after a complete and thorough review of the situation and an individual conference with the student involved. The individual dismissed has the right to appeal the decision to the committee on academic policy and procedure, whose decision will be final.

All admissions are required to report any academic or behavioral suspensions or expulsions from an educational institution and any charges, convictions, or deferred judgments received after they submitted their application for admissions to the Director of Admissions.

Nondegree Students

A nondegree student is one who has not applied to pursue a degree program at CSM but wishes to take courses regularly offered on campus. Such students may take any course for which they have the prerequisites as listed in the CSM catalog or have the permission of the instructor. Transcripts or evidence of the prerequisites are required. An applicant for admission to the undergraduate school who does not meet admission requirements may not fulfill deficiencies through this means. Exception to this rule can be made only by the Associate Provost for Enrollment Management. A maximum of 12 hours of nondegree credit from Colorado School of Mines may be used toward an undergraduate degree program. A nondegree student who has completed a Bachelor degree or higher, regardless of course level in which one wishes to enroll, must utilize the graduate nondegree process.  Courses completed as a non-degree student at the undergraduate level will be included in the overall undergraduate grade point average.