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Contact Us
International Student & Scholar Services
Debra DeBode, Director
Tel: (406) 994-4031
Fax: (406) 994-1619

MSU Office of International Programs
Montana State University
P.O. Box 172260
400 Culbertson Hall
Bozeman, MT 59717-2260
Office of International Programs
International Undergraduate Student

Important Deadlines
Applications must be submitted by the following deadlines:

  • May 15 for Fall Semester
  • October 15 for Spring Semester
  • March 1 for Summer Term

Applications received after these dates may be considered for the following term.

Notification of Admission
Applicants are reviewed for admission when all required final and official credentials have been received at the Office of Admissions. Successful candidates will promptly be issued a letter of acceptance and an I-20 form necessary for obtaining an F-1 student visa. A packet of information regarding orientation, the registration process, and other important information will follow directly in a separate mailing.

Freshmen & Transfer Students & Special Circumstances
Freshmen & Transfer Students
1.    Application Fee. A US$30 nonrefundable fee is required of all applicants before the application can be processed. Checks must be made payable to Montana State University. This fee cannot be waived, deferred or refunded.

2.    Application for Admission. Applicants must submit the International Undergraduate Application for Admission (enclosed).

3.    Evidence of Financial Support. The International Student Financial Certificate is found on the lower back page of the Application form. It guarantees the required minimum funds per academic year, is mandatory for each student, and must be signed by the student's sponsor. A bank statement is also required.

4.    English Language Proficiency. A score of 525 (195 CBT, 71 iBT ) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or IELTS score 6 or completion of Level 6 at the American Cultural Exchange Language Institute at MSU is required to qualify for admission. Only official score/grade reports sent directly from the language testing center will be accepted. Certificates of completion with official grade reports and the instructor's recommendation from alternative English as a Second Language programs may be considered. Those students who are citizens of countries where English is the native tongue need not submit proof of English language proficiency, unless English is not the student's native language.

5.    Academic Records. In order for the MSU Office of Admissions to evaluate academic qualifications and placement level:

FRESHMEN must submit official secondary transcripts posting date of completion. Official transcripts (bearing the school seal and signature) should be sent directly from the school to the University and must include an English translation. Certified true copies of original transcripts are acceptable. Any GCE A-level examination results must also be submitted and will be considered for transfer credit.

TRANSFER STUDENTS must request official transcripts from each international or U.S. post-secondary institution attended, directly from the institution(s) to Montana State University.

Special Circumstances
If you are a non-degree seeking student, a freshman foreign student graduating from a U.S. high school, or permanent resident, please view the Application Instructions for Special Circumstances.

Physical Examination & Medical Insurance
Physical Examination
All students entering Montana State University are required to have a record of a recent physical examination showing a physician-validated immunization record for two measles, two mumps, two rubella, diphtheria, tetanus and skin testing for tuberculosis.

The Physical Exam and Health History Form must be on file at the MSU Student Health Center before the student will be permitted to register for classes. The physical examination is to be performed by a personal physician in the student's home country (An English translation must be provided.) or in the U.S.  Examinations in the U.S. cost approximately $75.  A Health History Form will be sent to you upon receipt of your application.

Download Health History FormThe HEALTH HISTORY FORM is available to download and print in Adobe Acrobat PDF format.  

Medical Insurance
All MSU students are required to carry medical insurance and will be charged for the MSU student group policy upon registration. (Students may receive a refund if, prior to registration, they show proof of equal coverage from another current policy.) The cost for insurance on the MSU student group policy is approximately $1,404.00 per calendar year. Insurance for spouses and dependents will cost at least $3,000.00 per year extra and can be purchased at MSU upon registration. Coverage for Spring semester automatically continues through the Summer session for insured students and dependents.

I-20 Form or DS-2019 Form & Visa Application
I-20 Form or DS-2019 Form
Upon final acceptance for admission to Montana State University, an I-20 form will be sent to the applicant. The I-20 is necessary for obtaining an F-1 student visa or for legal transfer from another institution in the U.S.. Exchange Visitor Program participants need an DS-2019 form to obtain a J-1 visa. If, for any reason, a student cannot attend during the term planned, the I-20 must be returned with notification of a future enrollment date or notification that the student will not be coming to MSU. For students who will enroll in a later term, a new I-20 will be sent by MSU to the student upon final acceptance to the new term.

Students must attend the school named on the certificate of eligibility presented at the United States port of entry. Page three of the I-20 should be retained by the student for later endorsement by the MSU Registrar and for future reentries into the U.S. For J-1 visa students the pink sheet of form DS-2019 must be endorsed for reentry into the U.S. Students who will leave the U.S. and return to MSU need to have the endorsement of the MSU Registrar in order to show that they are students in good standing and, therefore, permitted to continue their studies at the University.

Students present their passport, Form I-20 ID or DS-2019 and entry permit (I-94 card) at the Office of International Education upon arrival at Montana State University. Copies of documents must be kept on file according to immigration regulations.

Visa Application
International students must appear before a United States consulate in order to secure an F-1 student visa. The following items must be presented: Form I-20 (certificate of eligibility issued by Montana State University), a valid passport, proof of sufficient financial support and proof of payment of SEVIS fee. Form I-20 is also used to obtain F-2 visas for dependents and proof of marriage is necessary in order to obtain a visa for the dependent spouse. Students are encouraged to apply for a visa as early as possible.

Exchange Visitor Program participants entering the United States on the J-1 visa should follow the above procedures, but must submit the Form DS-2019, issued by the sponsor, instead of the Form I-20.

Students with F-1 status who are transferring from an educational institution in the United States should consult with the international student adviser at their present school for instructions on the Immigration Service's transfer process. This should be done as early as possible to avoid any difficulties.

Here are 10 Points to Remember When Applying for a Non-Immigrant Visa

English Proficiency & Admission with Conditions
English Language Proficiency
In order to succeed academically at the university level, students must have a good mastery of English language skills. Proficiency in English for study at the undergraduate level may be demonstrated by a 525/195 CBT or 71 iBT or better score on the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), with an IELTS score of 6, or completion of Level 6 at the Language Institute on the MSU campus. Alternative courses undertaken at recognized ESL programs may be considered. TOEFL scores must be sent directly from the Educational Testing Services (ETS) to the MSU Office of Admissions. Official score reports can be ordered by writing to: TOEFL Score Reports, P.O. Box 6153, Princeton, NJ 08541-6153 USA or via the website at

Arrangements to take the TOEFL can be made by writing to: Educational Testing Services, Princeton, NJ 08540 USA ( Allow sufficient time for test registration procedures (about one month) and score results (one additional month). Entering the Montana State University school code (4488) on the test form will ensure that an official score report is sent directly to the Office of Admissions.

To take the IELTS, a program jointly managed by University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations (Cambridge ESOL), British Council and IDP Education Australia: IELTS Australia, please go to: Students taking the IELTS will need to take the following address along with them on their test date in order to write it on the test form and have the score results sent directly to the Office of Admissions: MSU International Admissions, 400 Culbertson Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA. Please allow approximately two weeks from the test date for the score to arrive at MSU.

Admission with Conditions
Students who do not have the required TOEFL score for full admission to MSU, but are academically qualified, may be considered for "admission with conditions." Any student who wishes to be admitted with conditions should submit a letter with the application that explains: 1) his/her level of English proficiency, 2) the reason that a TOEFL score is not available or that the score is lower than 525, and 3) indicates a willingness to take an English Placement Test (EPT) at the on-campus Language Institute upon arrival at MSU and to take any required ESL classes, if any part of the EPT is not passed.

Students must understand that, depending on the results of the EPT, a student may be 1) granted full admission, 2) required to take part-time ESL courses while beginning one or more academic courses, or 3) required to take full-time ESL courses until the required level of English proficiency is reached or the student scores 525/195 CBT on the TOEFL.

Financial Capability & Fees
Financial Capability
All students with non-immigrant visas must provide certification of financial support for the time period that they will be enrolled at Montana State University. Admission cannot be considered until the International Student Financial Certificate on the Application form is signed by the student's sponsor along with a bank statement. The Financial Certificate guarantees that the required minimum funds, in U.S. dollars, will be available to the student during the academic year. Applicants must also plan to meet expenses for subsequent years of study.

Financial assistance to international undergraduate students is not generally available. Students are eligible to compete for small departmental scholarships based on need and academic performance. Entering freshmen may apply for the extremely competitive MSU Presidential Scholarship (20 awarded annually to superior students, mandatory personal interview). The deadline for this academic scholarship is in early January for the following fall semester. Contact: University Honors Program, 108 Quad D, Bozeman, MT 59717, USA, for an application and details.

Successful applicants will need approximately $12,000 at the beginning of each semester for registration and payment of fees, room and board payments, insurance, and book purchases. Married students who plan to bring their spouse and children should plan on additional yearly expenses of $8,000 for a spouse and $5,000 per child.

Holders of the F-1 student visa may work at jobs on campus providing their employment does not displace a U.S. citizen. This work generally pays minimum wage and is limited to 20 hours per week while classes are in session (40 hours during vacation periods). Employment of this type is not guaranteed. F-2 visa holders (spouses) may not work under any circumstances. Off-campus employment is limited to practical training in a position that relates closely to the student's program of study. Practical training cannot start until after the first nine months of an academic program and many regulations apply. For clarification of employment regulations, contact the Foreign Student Adviser upon arrival.

New Int'l Undergraduate Student Scholarships
All international undergraduate applicants will automatically be considered for new student scholarships valued between US$500 and US$4,000. Documents required in the international undergraduate application will determine eligibility, and no separate scholarship application is required.

These scholarships are available only to new students during their first year of study at MSU and are non-renewable. Selection is based on previous academic achievement, test scores, potential for success at MSU, and overall fit with the institution and its academic programs. Scholarships will be available until all are awarded; therefore, students are encouraged to submit their MSU application early.

Contact Information
MSU on the Web at:

American Cultural Exchange Language Institute
1106 S. 6th Ave., Bozeman, MT 59715 USA
(406) 585-9832, fax: (406) 585-9838, e-mail:

Family Housing (On-campus houses and apartments)
1502 Garfield, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA,
(406) 994-3730, e-mail:

Graduate Admissions
108 Montana Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-4145, e-mail:

International Programs (Foreign Student Adviser)
400 Culbertson Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717
(406) 994-4031, fax: (406) 994-1619,

New Student Services (International Representative)
120 Hamilton Hall, P.O. Box 172190, Bozeman, MT 59717-2190
(406) 994-2452, US toll-free 888-MSU-CATS
fax: (406) 994-1923

Residence Life and Food Services (Residence halls)
31 Hedges Complex, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-2661, fax: (406) 994-1918
(Faxed housing contracts are not accepted.)

College of Agriculture
202 Linfield Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-3681, e-mail:

College of Arts and Architecture
217 Cheever Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-4405, e-mail:

College of Business
412 Reid Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-4681, e-mail:

Office of Student Services - College of Business
338 Reid Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-4681

College of Education, Health and Human Development
250 Reid Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-4731, e-mail:

College of Engineering
212 Roberts Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-2272,
see website for individual department e-mail addresses

College of Letters and Science
2-205 Wilson Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-4288, e-mail:

College of Nursing
101 Sherrick Hall, Bozeman, MT 59717 USA
(406) 994-3783, e-mail:


View Text-only Version Text-only Updated: 10/5/06
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