Admission as a Degree-Seeking Student

UAB welcomes applications from all individuals whose preparation and abilities give them a reasonable chance of success in its programs. All applicants must offer acceptable evidence of ability and intent to meet the academic standards of the university. Degree-seeking graduate students are those accepted into a specific graduate program to work toward a specific advanced degree. In addition to the completed online application, the Graduate School requires an application fee and official transcripts. To be considered official, academic transcripts must be mailed to UAB directly from the college/university attended, sent electronically to the UAB Graduate School by the school’s Registrar’s Office, or submitted in a sealed envelope bearing a university signature or stamp across the seal.

Standardized academic test scores are not required by the Graduate School; however, they may be required by the academic program so applicants should check with the program to which they are applying. The Graduate School requires English proficiency for international applicants. This requirement is automatically waived for international applicants who earned a bachelor’s, graduate, or professional degree in the US with a minimum GPA of 3.00. All other international applicants are required to submit TOEFL/IELTS/PTEA test scores that meet these requirements: 80 on the TOEFL, 6.5 on the IELTS, or a 53 on the PTEA. Official test scores must be sent directly to UAB from the testing agencies. Academic programs may choose to waive academic test scores at their discretion based on the qualifications of the applicant. However, the English proficiency requirement may not be waived. 

Individual graduate programs often require additional items such as letters of recommendation, a personal essay, or a resume so it is important that applicants are aware of program specific admissions requirements. Complete graduate applications are reviewed by graduate program faculty who make an admissions recommendation to the Graduate School. All credentials submitted as part of the application for admission become and remain property of the university and will not be returned to the student, duplicated, or transferred to another institution.

Any change in a student’s record prior to enrollment will necessitate a new review of the application. Any omissions or misrepresentations on a student’s application for admission will automatically invalidate consideration by and acceptance to UAB. If, after a student is admitted to the university, information comes to light that indicates an applicant did not meet all admission requirements, the applicant's offer of admission will be rescinded.

The application for admission, application instructions, and application deadlines can be accessed at

Admission as a Non-Degree Student

Students who do not wish to pursue a graduate degree at UAB but would like to enroll in graduate courses orthose who wish to begin graduate study before being admitted to a degree program can apply as a graduate non-degree seeking student. Registration in non-degree courses requires departmental approval as not all graduate courses are open to non-degree seeking graduate students. There is no limit to the number of graduate non-degree (GN) credit hours a non-degree seeking student can accumulate. However, should a student later wish to enroll as a degree seeking student at UAB, no more than 12 semester hours earned as a non-degree graduate student may be applied toward an advanced degree at UAB. Students wishing to apply more than 12 semester hours are required to appeal to the Graduate School Dean for permission. Should a student be admitted to a degree program, the credit earned while in non-degree seeking status is not automatically acceptable toward the degree.  

Because of U.S. immigration requirements, international applicants (i.e., those who are neither U.S. citizens nor permanent residents) typically cannot be considered for the non-degree category unless already residing in the United States. Immigration laws should be consulted to determine eligibility of International students should consult immigration laws.

International Admissions

The University of Alabama at Birmingham welcomes international applicants. An international applicant is neither a citizen nor a permanent resident of the United States. International applicants should consult the Graduate School website at for information regarding additional admissions requirements.

Change from Non-Degree to Degree-Seeking Status

A student with a non-degree classification who wishes to change to a degree-seeking classification must apply via the degree-seeking application and submit the required documents (transcripts, applicable test scores, and program-specific supporting documents). Degree-seeking admission of non-degree students is neither automatic nor guaranteed.

Readmission as a Degree-Seeking Student

Students who have not registered for three (3) consecutive semesters will be changed to inactive student status and must apply for readmission before they will be able to register for courses at UAB. Degree-seeking students who meet the following criteria are able to apply for readmission by submitting an application for readmission by visiting the Graduate School homepage ( and clicking the “Apply Now” button. Readmission also requires payment of the readmission fee, which is $30 for the 2017 – 2018 academic year.

  1. Were admitted to a UAB Graduate Degree-Seeking Program within the last five years, and
  2. Have registered for and successfully passed at least one graduate course at UAB after being admitted to a UAB Graduate Degree-Seeking Program BUT have not registered for courses for one academic year (3 semesters) or more, and 
  3. Have not attended any other university or college in the interim, and
  4. Wish to return to the graduate program to which they were previously admitted

Readmitted students must meet the degree requirements operative at the time of readmission.

Admission with Contingencies

Students lacking one or more admission requirements may be admitted to a graduate program contingent upon submission or completion of those requirements. Graduate students admitted with contingencies have until the end of their first  semester of enrollment to resolve all contingencies. Examples of contingencies that must be resolved are submission of official transcripts, official test scores, official degree statements, required course completion, etc. Students are informed of specific requirements for continued enrollment and the time allowed for completion at the time of admission. Failure to meet the requirements during the stipulated time will result in a registration hold until the contingency is resolved and may result in dismissal from the Graduate School.

Admission of Students Previously Dismissed

When any individual applies to a graduate program, a significant part of the admissions decision involves an estimate, based on the applicant’s academic history, of whether the applicant can perform satisfactorily at the graduate level. Applicants who have previously been academically dismissed from the Graduate School must present convincing evidence to program faculty and the Graduate School Dean that a substantial improvement has occurred so that it is probable that the applicant can now perform at the required level in graduate work. In general, students are not admitted to a graduate program from which they have been previously dismissed.

Dual Degree Programs

UAB offers many opportunities for students to pursue two advanced degrees concurrently.

Students wishing to be enrolled in two programs concurrently should must submit a degree-seeking application and be admitted to each program individually. The minimum number of credit hours required for each degree must be met. Courses may not be double counted and are only allowed to fulfill requirements for one degree.

Fast Track

UAB offers a limited number of Fast Track programs for students who wish to begin working on masters requirements while completing their bachelor’s degree. Students are often able to earn both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in five years although the exact time to complete the master’s degree varies based on program.

Concurrent Degrees

Students who do not qualify for a combined degree program but wish to begin work toward a second graduate degree may enroll in and earn up to 12 semester hours in the secondary program without special permission while simultaneously earning credit toward their original degree. However, no more than 12 semester hours earned while pursuing the first degree program may be applied toward the second degree without prior approval by both the graduate program and the Dean of the Graduate School.

UAB Employee Admission

To maintain university accountability, UAB faculty and staff who wish to take occasional graduate courses may only register for these courses after admission to the Graduate School as either a non-degree seeking student or a degree-seeking student. Admission of a UAB employee as a degree-seeking graduate student requires the concurrence of the applicant’s department chair and dean(s), as well as the approvals required for other applicants to the same program. For more information regarding Educational Assistance, visit the UAB Human Resources Web page at

UAB employees who wish to become full time graduate students and continue to work part time cannot work more than 10 hours per week outside their commitment to meet the requirements of their pre-doctoral program.

UAB employees who enroll in a Ph.D. program and continue to work full time must meet the following requirements:

  1. Are not eligible to be supported by a training grant
  2. Cannot be simultaneously supported by a UAB Graduate Assistantship/Traineeship
  3. Thesis or dissertation work may not be initiated until the student enrolls in a program (i.e. data generated by the employee/student prior to enrollment that has been submitted for publication or published cannot be included in a thesis or dissertation)
  4. Must meet the same set of program requirements as all other students
  5. The dissertation committee is responsible for assuring that these stipulations are met
  6. The Program Director and dissertation committee must agree in writing to a protracted course of study*

Equal Opportunity Policy

UAB administers its educational programs and activities, including admission, without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, national origin, disability unrelated to job performance or Vietnam-era or disabled veteran status. The full text of this policy can be found:

Office of Graduate Admissions

Mailing Address for Documents and Credentials:

G03 Lister Hill Library
1720 2nd Avenue South
Birmingham, AL 35294-0013

Physical Address:

1700 University Boulevard
Birmingham, Alabama 35294-0013
(205) 934-8227