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Undergraduate Application Process

Undergraduate Admissions

Students may apply to Hillsdale College after completing their junior year of high school. All students are automatically considered for academic scholarships; no additional paperwork is required. Need-based aid applications require the Confidential Family Financial Statement, which can be completed after being admitted; the FAFSA is non-applicable.

Application Deadlines

Early Action I

November 1

Priority date for leadership scholarship consideration. Notification early December. Deposit by May 1.

Early Action II

December 15

Priority date for merit scholarship consideration. Notification early February. Deposit by May 1.

Regular Decision

March 15

Notification early April. Deposit by May 1.

Spring Admission

November 1

Decision notification in mid-November. Deposit by December 15.

Admissions Counselors

 Find Your Counselor

 Application Checklist

Applicants can apply using Hillsdale’s online application or via The Common Application. Equal consideration is given to both, and neither online application requires a fee.

Apply Online Apply Via The Common Application

In addition to the application, applicants must also submit the materials below. Applications and supplemental application materials should be received prior to final deadlines, at which time all files will be reviewed as submitted. Artificial intelligence tools may not be used in any part of the application process.

Official High School Transcripts

We require official grades from all institutions in which you have enrolled or are currently enrolled. This includes both high school and college. If a transcript includes grades from past institutions, those institutions do not need to send a separate transcript.

Two Academic Letters Of Recommendation

Students applying via The Common Application will use the Common Application recommendation template. Recommendations for Hillsdale’s online application can be submitted through the application’s online form, or by using the recommendation template below.

Download Recommendation Template

Essay and Short Answers

Applicants using The Common Application will respond to a Common Application essay prompt and Hillsdale Member Screen short answer questions. Applicants using Hillsdale’s online application will respond to a Hillsdale essay prompt and short answer questions via a Writing Supplement form. All responses should represent your own work.

Official ACT, CLT, or SAT Scores

Applicants may further demonstrate academic preparedness by supplementing the application file with an official ACT, CLT, or SAT score, or may choose to apply without a standardized test score. Application files with standardized test scores and those without will receive equal consideration for admission and scholarship.

For those submitting scores, the highest composite from a single sitting will be considered. Hillsdale does not super-score. Hillsdale College’s SAT code is 1295. Hillsdale College’s ACT code is 2010. Hillsdale also accepts The Classic Learning Test. A labeled high school transcript with complete scores is an acceptable substitution for an official score report if sub scores and testing dates are included.


A résumé of extracurricular activities, leadership, volunteerism, and work experience is required. Please include dates/class years for all items.

Admissions Interview

All applicants to Hillsdale College are strongly encouraged to sit for an Admissions interview before or soon after applying. Campus visits serve as the best means of arranging such an appointment. Regional interview opportunities, as well as virtual interviews for distance candidates, are occasionally available. Contact your admissions counselor for additional details. Applicants are welcome to interview as soon as they feel prepared, but to ensure sufficient time for consideration, the interview is recommended no later than two weeks before the chosen application deadline.

Special Instructions

Students With College Credit: Students wishing to receive Hillsdale College credit for any college coursework taken while in high school must submit official transcripts from the institution(s) granting credit. A student who has taken and received one or more college credits but has never enrolled full-time as a degree-seeking student should select “Freshman” on the application.

Transfer Students: A transfer student is any applicant who is presently or was once enrolled full-time at another institution working towards a degree. In addition to the application requirements listed, transfer students must submit official transcripts from any institutions at which college credit was received, as well as a Dean of Students Transfer Form.

Download Transfer Form

Homeschool Students: Candidates for admission from homeschooling backgrounds are required to submit high school transcripts from the primary educator. We prefer that courses be listed on one page, be organized by year/level, and include grades. Notations may be made if courses were taken in a variety of contexts (i.e. co-op, guild, association, etc.). Detailed course descriptions, textbooks used, and/or a high school reading list may be submitted in addition to a transcript, but should not exceed five pages. If a homeschool student dual-enrolled at the college level during his or her high school education, please submit official college transcripts once the courses are concluded to be considered for transfer credit.

Letters of recommendation should be written by individuals not related to the applicant. If the primary educator is a parent, a third letter should be submitted by him/her.

International Students: Candidates for admission from other countries follow the customary entrance procedures while also being responsible to submit all transcripts with English translation. If this service is not available, evaluations may be performed by one of the approved credential evaluation agencies, such as World Education Services (WES) or Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. (ECE). Other reputable agencies can be found on the NACES website. Students whose first language is not English must demonstrate proficiency by submitting the results of the TOEFL or an equivalent test (ACT, CLT, IELTS, MET, SAT, or WAEC are also acceptable, as is the Skills for English test at level B1 or higher, ECCE at level B2, or completion of level 108 or higher of an ESL course).

Guest & Special Students: Guest students are students in good standing at another institution who plan to return to their home institution but desire temporary enrollment at Hillsdale College. They should obtain an application form in the records office of their home institution, or by contacting Hillsdale’s Undergraduate Admissions Office.

Permission is granted to a limited number of Special Students to enroll for fewer than the minimum number of credit hours carried by a regular student. These students pay the per-credit-hour tuition fee and enroll for not more than eleven hours of coursework each semester. They must follow the standard application procedure.

Veteran Admissions: Veterans who have served honorably follow the usual undergraduate application process. A Commanding Officer Endorsement and the last two performance evaluations will supplement the typical two required letters of recommendation from academic/civilian references for Freedom Scholarship consideration. An interview will also be required for Freedom Scholarship consideration. Once admitted, a copy of form DD214 Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty will be part of the final financial aid consideration process.

Freedom Scholarship

How to Submit Application Materials

Hillsdale College Application

Students using the Hillsdale online application will have the opportunity to upload most supplementary items using their admissions account.

Transcripts or additional items can be mailed to:

Admissions Office
Hillsdale College
33 E. College Street
Hillsdale, MI 49242

These materials can also be emailed to:

[email protected]

Common Application

Students using The Common Application may submit all supplemental materials directly through The Common App.


If you have any questions regarding the admissions process, or need help submitting an application, please contact us by phone during regular office hours, or by email.

Phone: (517) 607-2327Email: [email protected]