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Rackham Admissions and COVID-19

Rackham Graduate School understands there are many questions related to the admissions process during this global health crisis. We are doing our best to provide service while Rackham staff members work remotely while our office is closed. Below, you can find information and resources to assist you during this time. This page will be updated as new information becomes available, so please check back frequently.

Admissions and Enrollment

Is Rackham continuing to approve offers of admission?

Yes, the admissions staff is sending email communications confirming that admission is approved and providing instructions related to enrollment.

Can my application fee be refunded?

The fee is nonrefundable as it is used to defray administrative costs for the application system.

My university is closed and cannot send official transcripts by the deadline. What should I do as a newly admitted student?

If you have received an offer of admission on the condition that you will provide additional document(s) to Rackham, you must submit one official final transcript/academic record from the institution where you have earned or will earn a bachelor’s degree.

Students who received their degree from an institution outside of the United States should review the Required Academic Credentials from Non-U.S. Institutions page for transcript/academic record requirements by country or region. Refer to your admission email to see if you need to send an official final transcript/academic record. The official final transcript/academic record must be provided by the end of your first term.

If you attended an institution in China

If you attended an institution in China and you do not have an official and final transcript, Certificate of Graduation, and Degree Diploma, your transcripts and degree certificates can be verified by the China Higher Education Student Information and Career Center (CHESICC) and/or the China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Development Center (CDGDC).

Verification Report of China Higher Education Qualification Certificate (高等教育学历认证报告) (Paper or Online) from CHESICC.

Verification Report of China Higher Education Student's Academic Transcript (大学成绩认证报告) from CHESICC.

Verification Report confirming the award of the degree (bachelor’s, master’s, or Ph.D.) from CHESICC.

If you attended an institution in India

If you attended an institution in India, we only accept electronic transcripts from India sent via TrueCopy Credentials or request the Registrar (or Recorder of Records) send an electronic transcript and Transcripts/Academic Records Submission Form to racketranscripts@umich.edu. If it is not possible to include the Transcripts/Academic Records Submission Form, do not mail or submit separately.

Because of the interruptions caused by COVID-19, can my international university/college email my official transcript to Rackham?

Yes. Request that the Registrar (or Recorder of Records) send an electronic transcript and Transcripts/Academic Records Submission Form to racketranscripts@umich.edu. If it is not possible to include the Transcripts/Academic Records Submission Form, do not mail or submit separately.

Is it possible for the English proficiency tests to be waived because of interruptions caused by COVID-19?

No, however, ETS has expanded the availability of at-home testing for the TOEFL Exam. IELTS is offering the IELTS Indicator as an at-home test.

Will you accept the Duolingo English test?

Rackham Admissions is not accepting the Duolingo English test at this time. We accept the TOEFL, ECPE, IELTS, and MET/MELAB. Learn more about the English exams we accept on our Tests page.

Can I update my TOEFL/IELTS scores after submitting my application?

Updated test scores are acceptable as they become available.

Can I request a deferral of admission?

Graduate programs may grant a request to defer admission for up to one year following the original term of application. Send your deferral request to the graduate program. You must include the reason for deferral in your request. Decisions to approve deferral requests are made carefully, and not all requests may be approved.

International applicants approved for deferral by the graduate program do not need to submit financial documents until they receive further direction from Rackham.

Immigration Documents

When is the last date I can submit financial documents for fall 2021?

The deadline for submitting the required financial documentation for the issuance of the I-20 for the F-1 visa or the DS-2019 for the J-1 visa for fall 2021 is May 15.

I am taking classes remotely in winter 2021 and require a fall 2021 immigration document, when will I receive my fall 2021 immigration document?

For international students delaying arrival to fall 2021, Rackham's goal is to have the immigration document enroute to the students no later than June 1, 2021.

I deferred my admission to fall 2021, when will I receive my immigration document?

For international students deferring admission to fall 2021, Rackham's goal is to have the immigration document enroute to the students no later than June 1, 2021.

When will you process financial documents? Are immigration documents being processed?

The admissions staff is reviewing and approving the financial uploads daily. As the staff are working remotely, the processing time is longer than the normal three weeks. Please be patient. At this time, it takes a minimum of 20 business days, or four weeks, for financial documents to be processed. At this time, we are not able to guarantee a date by which the I-20 or DS-2019 can be shipped.

What forms of financial documentation are acceptable?

There are a number of options that are acceptable. An official dated bank statement, a detailed letter from the sponsor, or a letter from the University of Michigan program or department providing an award. Learn what forms of financial documentation are acceptable on our Immigration Documents for International Students page.

How can I receive my new initial I-20/DS-2019?

Once you have submitted all required financial documents to Rackham Admissions and you have matriculated into your program, sign up and pay for eShipGlobal. Your I-20 or DS-2019 will be shipped by the courier service (FedEx, or UPS) you select. Rackham is also sending an electronic I-20 which is acceptable to pay the SEVIS fee and to attend the visa interview.

When will I be able to obtain my SEVIS ID number?

The SEVIS ID can be obtained in your Wolverine Access Friend Account after your immigration document is created. The SEVIS ID number will allow you to obtain a visa interview and pay the SEVIS fee.

The hard copy of the I-20 may be required when you travel to the United States. We advise you to set up your Express Mail eShip Global account. eShip Global is a reliable delivery method to receive your immigration documents. Please follow the link for information on how to setup an eShip Global account.

Will I still be able to get a student visa?

The U.S. Department of State is resuming routine visa services in a phased-in process, based on local conditions. Check with the U.S. embassy or consulate nearest you to find out more about their plans and about your options for scheduling an appointment for a visa interview. Try to schedule your visa interview appointment as soon as possible. Once visa issuance resumes, there may be significant delays due to backlogs and new physical distancing protocols at embassies and consulates. In some cases, the option to schedule a visa interview through “expedited processing” may still be available.

Do I need to submit financial documents before I request a deferral?

No. International applicants approved for deferral by the graduate program do not need to submit financial documents until they receive further direction from Rackham Admissions.

I am an international student who is completing a degree program at another U.S. university. What is the latest date to transfer my SEVIS record to the University of Michigan?

For students admitted for fall 2021, the latest release date from your current school is August 16, 2021.

How do I receive my transfer in I-20 or DS-2019?

You are required to provide the documents as stated in the admission email notification and upload them in Wolverine Access.

Sign up and pay for eShipGlobal. Your I-20 or DS-2019 will then be shipped by the courier service (FedEx, or UPS) you selected.

I am a current University of Michigan student. How do I obtain my change of level I-20 or DS-2019?

You are required to provide the documents as stated in the admission email notification and upload them in Wolverine Access. Sign up and pay for eShipGlobal. Your I-20 or DS-2019 will then be shipped by the courier service (FedEx, or UPS) you selected.

Immigration Delays

What if there is a delay in scheduling a visa appointment?

It is appropriate to inform the graduate program.

What if there is a delay in obtaining visa approval?

If you experience a visa delay and cannot arrive on campus by August 23, 2021 for fall term 2021, complete the “visa assistance” form on the International Center website.

What if there is a travel delay?

If you are unable to arrive by the start of the fall 2021 term, consult your program about the options for enrollment.

Issues for Current Students

What should current students who have returned to their home country do to plan their return?

Students must consult with their program.

General Questions About Immigration Regulations

How do I learn about updates to the immigration regulations?

The International Center is providing guidance as the university learns of changes proposed and approved. Visit https://internationalcenter.umich.edu/.

Rackham and colleagues in other units throughout the university are focused on further understanding the impact and how to respond in ways that support you and your educational goals.