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Transfer Application Process

The George Washington University (GW) considers anyone who has graduated from high school and completed at least one college course since high school graduation to be a transfer student. Each year we welcome nearly 350 new transfer students from more than 300 different colleges and universities. We seek transfer students who have succeeded academically at another college or university and have the motivation to thrive at GW.

Our review of your application package includes an evaluation of your academic background at each institution of higher education previously attended. We also take into consideration your high school record and standardized test scores (if applicable), essays, letters of recommendation, extracurricular activities and interest in the university.

All prospective transfer students will apply to GW by submitting the Common Application. Please note that while you can submit certain materials, including your transcript, recommendations and essay through the Common Application, GW will also accept documents that are sent via mail and email.

Don’t Miss Out on Becoming a Colonial—Apply on Time

Transfer Application Steps

Submit an Application

Complete and submit the Common Application online.

Note that there are multiple decision plans at GW. We offer Early Decision I, Early Decision II, as well as Regular Decision. Early Decision plans utilize a binding agreement, meaning that you are required to attend should you be admitted to the university. The Early Decision agreement form can be found on the Common App website. Be sure to pay attention to application deadlines.

The essay portion of the application provides an opportunity for applicants to demonstrate their English language writing skills. Applicants will choose one of five specific prompts that best allows them to share their story with the Admissions Committee. The essay will be 250 to 650 words and detailed instructions can be found in the Common Application.

In addition to the Common Application essay, the applicant must complete the 250 word Writing Supplement. The GW supplemental essay question is a chance to show their personality and make connections between your experiences and GW’s institutional values.

Please note: The application is not complete and we cannot begin the application review until we receive all required forms. The application requires a nonrefundable application fee of $75 for students. Be sure to complete the last step after Summary and Review, which finalizes payment of the fee, and be certain it is successfully submitted. The Common Application opens in early August for fall and spring admission.

Supporting documentation, including School Report, transcripts, and letters of recommendation can be submitted electronically via the Common Application, via email to [email protected], or via mail to our office:
     The George Washington University
     Office of Undergraduate Admissions
     2121 I Street NW, Suite 201
     Washington, D.C. 20052

Please note that electronic submission is the preferred method of submitting documentation to the Admissions Office and will allow us to complete your application in a timely manner.

Please allow us several weeks from the time the application is submitted to process all documents and post them in the GW Admissions Portal. During the busy application period, the portal is the best resource, as we are continually updating students' applications and documents. You will receive a link to the portal with instructions on how to log in after your application is submitted.

On the Common Application and corresponding documentation, please ensure the applicant’s name is written as it appears on their passport or government identification. Students should use the Common Application's “preferred name” field to include a preferred name, if it differs from the name on official identification. All international applicants must provide a permanent, physical mailing address (that is not a post office box).

Submit a Writing Supplement

GW requires all students to submit additional supplemental information as a part of their Common Application, including an additional supplemental essay. Applications will not be considered complete without the writing supplement. The writing supplement is accessible via the Common Application website.  


If you are applying to any of the special programs listed below, complete the required supplemental essay(s), submit a portfolio, and/or schedule an audition. Further information about these programs can be found on our undergraduate admissions website.


If you are applying to any of the special programs listed below, complete the required supplemental essay(s), submit a portfolio, and/or schedule an audition. Further information about these programs can be found on our undergraduate admissions website.

  • School of Media and Public Affairs
  • BFA Programs in the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design

Send Official Transcripts

Transfer applicants must submit an official transcript from each college or university you previously attended. If you have less than 30 college credits, you will need to submit high school transcripts. These credentials are required (whether or not credit was earned or is desired) and should be sent directly from the registrar's office to GW's Office of Admissions. Email transcripts must be sent directly from the sender's school email address in order to be considered official.

For international applicants, if your original transcripts are not in English, please submit both the original documents as well as certified English translations.

Send Optional Test Scores

GW is test-optional, meaning students applying for freshman or transfer admission are not required to submit standardized test scores (SAT or ACT), except in the following select circumstances:

  • Applicants applying to the accelerated Seven-Year B.A./M.D. Program
  • Applicants who are homeschooled or who attend an online high school
  • Applicants who attend secondary schools that provide only narrative evaluations rather than some form of grading scale
  • Recruited NCAA Division I athletes

Because we take a holistic approach to the application review process, we have no minimum GPA or SAT/ACT requirements for admission. However, admission to GW is competitive and admitted students are typically strong academic students in their high school graduating class.

GW’s member screen on the Common Application asks applicants whether they would like test scores considered as part of their application. Once that selection has been made and the application submitted, it cannot be changed. If an applicant has previously submitted test scores to our office but indicates on the application that they would not like their scores considered, test scores will not be viewed during application review. Please note that following the release of our admissions decisions, we will ask admitted students to submit test scores for research purposes.

Should you submit SAT or ACT scores, please be mindful of GW’s test score codes:

     SAT Code: 5246
     ACT Code: 0664


Note, we consider only the critical reading and math sections of the SAT for admission.

Submit a Faculty Recommendation

GW requires one recommendation from a faculty member through the Academic Report form on the Common Application. To request the recommendation:

  1. Go to your Common Application Dashboard.
  2. Click the "Recommenders and FERPA" link.
  3. Select "Invite Academic Evaluator."
  4. Follow the Release Authorization directions.
  5. Enter the information for the person completing the form on your behalf.

The letter can be submitted directly by the recommender online through the Common Application's Academic Evaluation form, emailed to [email protected], or mailed to our office.

Submit a College Report

You must submit the College Report (formerly called the Registrar’s Report or College Official’s Report) form from your current or most recent college where you were enrolled full time. This form should be completed by the registrar or appropriate dean or college official who can verify your enrollment and academic/disciplinary standing. To access the College Report form:

  1. Go to your Common Application Dashboard.
  2. Click the "Recommenders and FERPA" link.
  3. Print the "College Report" form.
  4. Take the form to the Registrar, Dean of Students, Academic Advisor or designated office at your campus to have the form completed.
  5. You must complete the form for your current or most recent school/institution where you were enrolled full time.

Check Your Application Status

After submitting your application, please allow 7-10 business days for GW to receive it. Upon receipt, we’ll send you an acknowledgement email with instructions about how to log in to your GW Admissions Portal where you can track application materials and view your admission decision.

Please allow several weeks from the date you submit your application to process your documents and post them in your GW Portal. During the busy application period, your GW Portal is your best resource, as we are continually updating students' applications and documents.

If you have any questions about the application process, visit our contact us page.