Incoming Exchange Students

The information below is intended only for those students officially nominated by one of The University of Akron’s international exchange partners for the exchange program between the two institutions.  For more detailed information, please download and read carefully the Incoming Exchange Handbook from the “Forms” section below.  Questions may be sent to

All other students should consult the main International Admissions section of the OIP website and submit inquiries to

Required Documents for Admission

For more information about Immigration, click here.

Below is a list of the documents required for admission to The University of Akron as an exchange (guest) student.

  • Letter of Nomination from home university coordinator, including:
    • Full, legal name as it appears on the passport
    • MajorTerm of exchange
    • Date of birth (mm/dd/yyyy)
    • City and country of birth
    • Country of citizenship
  • Official University of Akron application*ǂ
  • Completed Declaration and Certification of Finances Form
  • Original bank statement for student and/or sponsor in the equivalent amount of USD 6200 for one semester or USD 12400 for an academic or calendar year.  An official letter from the student or sponsor’s bank will also suffice.  In in a language other than English, and English-language translation must be submitted, as well.**
  • Legible copy of passport information page
  • Proof of English-proficiency (see below)
  • Official transcripts for all universities, colleges or professional schools the student has attended, along with exact English translations. If not addressed on the transcript, active coursework up to the exchange term at UA must be included separately. This documentation is necessary in order for the student to be registered for classes at UA.**
  • Signature Verification Form

While paper copies will continue to be accepted, electronic submission is highly preferred and encouraged.  **Please note: Electronic copies of bank statements and academic transcripts may only be accepted through the home institution coordinator.  We cannot accept electronic copies of those documents directly from the student.

*The application fee is waived for exchange students, though graduate students must pay the fee and request a refund.
ǂStudents should select the option to apply as a “Guest Student”.

English Proficiency

Students must demonstrate sufficient English proficiency by submitting TOEFL, IELTS or MELAB exam results no older than 2 years.  Minimum scores vary by exam, level and program:

  • Undergraduates
    • TOEFL: 71 iBT, 197 cBT or 527-530 pBT
    • IELTS: 6.0
    • MELAB: 69
  • Graduates
    • General
      • TOEFL: 79 iBT, 212 cBT or 550 pBT
      • IELTS: 6.5
    • English and History
      • TOEFL: 92-93 iBT, 237 cBT or 580 pBT
      • IELTS: 6.5
    • Biomedical Engineering
      • TOEFL: 96-97 iBT, 243 cBT or 590 pBT
      • IELTS: 7.0

Additional Requirements for Graduate Students

Graduate students may be admitted for one semester only as guest students; full admission is required for academic year placements.

Depending on the program, additional requirements such as GRE, GMAT, MAT or LSAT results may be placed on graduate students.

Immigration Documents

Once all of the above documents have been received and the student has been admitted to The University of Akron, the students file will be forwarded to one of the International Student and Scholars Services Advisors to create the student’s SEVIS record and generate the appropriate immigration document.  Most exchange students will receive a DS-2019 to apply for a J-1 Exchange Visitor visa; however, on very rare occasions, a student may receive an I-20 to apply for an F-1 Student Visa.

While our advisors will attempt to generate the document as quickly as possible, please understand that they work with a large number of students in a variety of capacities.  Generation of the immigration document may take up to two weeks.

After the document is generated, the Office of International Programs will send the complete Welcome Packet to the student’s host coordinator for distribution.  Please note that all packets to a single institution will be sent together.

Exchange Student Academic Worksheet

While it is not required for admission, it is critical that exchange students complete the Exchange Student Academic Worksheet in advance. We will make every effort to register exchange students before their arrival in Akron. Once a schedule is set, changes to it can become difficult, especially after arrival. Late submission of the worksheet will result in registration during International Student Orientation, a time when many class capacities have already been reached, leaving students with few class options.


In order to facilitate interaction with US students, as well as several other reasons, exchange students are strongly encouraged to live on campus in UA residence halls.  The Office of International Programs will work together with the Office of Residence Life and Housing to reserve spaces in one or more of the lowest cost residence halls for incoming exchange students.

The housing contract for on-campus residence will be sent to students through the home university coordinator.  Once received and completed, students should be sure to email the contract to and copy by the application deadline for that term (May 1 or October 1).  The housing deposit is waived for international students.

Students looking for housing off-campus should consult the Office of Off-Campus Student Services.

Courses and Registration

Descriptions of UA classes and any applicable prerequisites are available in the Undergraduate and Graduate Bulletins available on the website of the Office of the University Registrar.  However, not every class listed in the bulletin is offered each term.  Students should consult the Schedule of Classes in order to determine which classes are offered in their given term.  Undergraduate students are not permitted to take graduate-level courses (500 and above).

The Office of International Programs will work with academic advisors as much as possible to register undergraduate students prior to arrival using the Exchange Student Academic Worksheet.  Students also will have the opportunity to meet with an advisor during the week of International Student Orientation to complete or change their registration.

Graduate students must register directly through a departmental advisor.

International Student Orientation

International Student Orientation is mandatory for all new international students.  While exact dates will be announced in the Welcome Letter students receive with their immigration documents, International Student Orientation generally takes place the week prior to the start of classes.  Students should plan to arrive in time to attend.  Those students living in university residence halls must consult with the Office of Residence Life and Housing ( to make arrangements for moving in early.

Health Insurance

International students are required to carry health insurance that will cover them during their full stay in the US.  Our system is designed so that it is assumed a student will subscribe to The University of Akron’s Student Health Plan.  However, exchange students with adequate alternate coverage may request a waiver of the insurance requirement by emailing the request along with their coverage information to

Current minimum coverage requirements are:

  1. Medical benefits of at least $50,000 per person per accident or illness
  2. Repatriation of remains in the amount of $7,500
  3. Expenses associated with medical evacuation in the amount of $10,000.
  4. Deductible that no greater than $500 per accident or illness
  5. Must meet other standards specified in the regulations.

Rates are available here: International Student Insurance Fee. Pro-rated rates are available for exchange students studying for Spring Semester only.

Requesting an Official UA Transcript

Due to US privacy laws, the Office of International Programs is unable to request official transcripts on a student’s behalf.  Therefore, students themselves must be sure to request an official UA transcript be sent to their home institution coordinators.  Students who retain access to My Akron may make the request directly through that system by following these directions: How to Request and Official Transcript.

Students who no longer have access to My Akron must submit a Transcript Request Form, available from the Office of the University Registrar.