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Frequently Asked Questions

Undergraduate Admissions

Admissions FAQ

What does the admissions committee consider when reviewing applicants?

We review everything that we ask you to submit: your high school transcript, standardized test scores when applicable, personal statement, letters of recommendation and extracurricular activities. Evaluating all of these factors helps us select students that best fit Salve Regina academically and personally.

What is the average GPA for accepted students?

The average GPA was a 3.4 for our most recent freshman class. Like most college admissions staffs, we recalculate your GPA on a 4.0 scale, taking only college preparatory core academic subjects into consideration. We don't include classes like physical education, general music and art (with the exception of AP courses), and other electives. We do give added weight to honors, Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses.

How many applications did Salve Regina receive last year? What was the percentage of applicants accepted?

Admission to Salve Regina is competitive. From an applicant pool of 5,000 for the most recent freshman class, we admitted just over 3,000 students. In the past three years, our acceptance rate has averaged 65 percent.

I am applying to the nursing program, are there specific criteria I should be aware of?

Admission to the nursing program is highly selective, and only 40 percent of nursing applicants are typically admitted. Students must apply by either the early action I or early decision deadline of Nov. 1 to be considered for this program.

The average SAT score (combined critical reading and math) of students recently offered admission was 1220. Students who chose to take the ACT had an average composite score of 26. The average high school GPA (recalculated on a 4.0 scale at the completion of junior year) was a 3.80. Students accepted to the nursing program had four or more years of science with no grade lower than a B- in those courses.

How important is my personal statement? Does someone actually read it?

Since the purpose of the personal essay is for us to get to know you better, it's very important. The Common Application offers five options for your essay. Since you know that your personal essay is in fact read, take pride in what you submit - edit it yourself, and then have it proofread and critiqued by a teacher, parent or friend.

Are interviews a part of the admissions process at Salve Regina?

We conduct optional, informational interviews at Salve Regina. Our admissions counselors are available to meet one-on-one with you on campus, at your high school or while they are traveling in your area. During the pandemic, we encourage you to sign up for a video call with your counselor. To find your representative and to register, visit our Meet Your Counselor page.

When is the admissions application deadline?

The early action I (non-binding) and early decision (binding) admissions deadlines are Nov. 1. All nursing applicants are required to apply using one of these deadline options. Early decision applicants are notified by Dec. 15, followed by early action I applicants by Jan. 1.

In addition, Salve Regina offers an early action II application plan. The deadline is Jan. 5 and students will be notified of their decision by Feb. 15.

The regular decision priority deadline is Feb. 1. Those who submit an application for Feb. 1 will receive a decision by April 1. Any application postmarked after Feb. 1 will be reviewed on a space available basis.

After I've sent my application, about how long will it take for me to get an admission decision?

Early decision applicants are notified by Dec. 15. Early action I decisions are mailed by Jan. 1. Students taking advantage of the early action II plan will receive decisions by Feb. 15. For those that apply by our regular decision deadline of Feb. 1, decisions will be mailed on a rolling basis, but no later than April 1.

Would I be a good candidate for the binding early decision plan?

If you are confident that Salve Regina is your first choice, you are encouraged to apply under our early decision plan, which offers the chance to be the first to hear from us and make your commitment if admitted, removing the pressure of the college decision process from the remainder of your senior year. Early decision is different than early action - if you apply early decision, you agree to commit to Salve Regina if you are admitted and must withdraw your applications from other colleges and universities.

Because early decision is a binding program, students who have concerns about their ability to afford higher education should not apply under this option.

Application deadline: Nov. 1
Supplemental materials deadline: Nov. 15
Notification date: Dec. 15*
Enrollment deposit deadline: Jan. 15

*Students who are not admitted under early decision may have their application deferred to the regular admission pool. Students who are deferred are released from the terms of the early decision agreement. Applicants to the nursing program who are denied admission but offered admission to another University program are also released from the terms of the early decision agreement.

Benefits of Early Decision

  • Be the first to hear, and be the first to know where you are attending college in the fall.
  • By making a clear declaration of your intention to attend Salve Regina if admitted, your chance for admission to the University increases.
  • Because you will be among the first to commit, you will be the first to receive access to registration for campus housing and Orientation.

If you are considering early decision, we encourage you to have a conversation with your admissions counselor to determine if this option makes sense for you. You will find their contact information here.

To be considered for financial aid, which forms must I fill out?

To apply for financial aid, you must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The priority deadline for this form is March 1. For more financial aid information or to access the required forms online, visit the Office of Financial Aid.

Am I able to defer my offer of admission to a future semester?

We understand that it is sometimes necessary for students to defer their admission to Salve Regina and attend at a later date. If you are considering this option, we encourage you to contact Rita Winthrop, assistant director of admissions and coordinator of transfer admissions, at (401) 341-2627 or to discuss the process.

  • All students deferring their acceptance are required to complete the deferral form and send a final high school transcript, if not already on file, in order to be eligible.
  • Although any student is eligible to defer for up to one year, nursing students will be re-evaluated and do not maintain a guaranteed spot in the class. Additionally, nursing students who have attempted college coursework elsewhere are not eligible to re-apply for this major.
  • Students are not required to submit a deposit to be considered for deferral. However, if you have already submitted your deposit, we will honor this payment for the term you enroll at Salve Regina within your one year deferral timeframe.
  • Deferred students need to complete the reactivation of application form by Dec. 1 for the spring semester or April 1 for the following fall semester.
  • Deferrals are offered for up to one year from date of admission. If your plans are to return to Salve Regina after a longer period of time, please complete the reactivation of application form the semester prior to when you hope to enroll.
  • For students who attempt a post-graduate (PG) year or college coursework, at the time of reactivation you will need to supply this additional academic work for consideration. Your application will be re-evaluated and it may also affect your academic merit scholarship and/or financial aid package.
  • For students who do not engage in any additional academic work, your merit scholarship and financial aid package will remain the same during your one-year deferral.
  • For students deferring to the following fall semester, you will need to complete the new year's FAFSA to receive an updated financial aid package. This can be done beginning Oct. 1 prior to the fall semester.

If my school changes my grading to pass/fail (or changes my academic requirements), will that impact my enrollment for or admission to Salve?

In these unprecedented times, many secondary schools and colleges have made adjustments to best support the success of their students. In some cases, students are being allowed to drop courses or to take courses pass/fail instead of being awarded a letter grade. We also understand that some states have or will be waiving statewide testing.

  • For seniors who have already been admitted to Salve Regina, we will be flexible with your final grades. Our expectation is that you remain steadfast in completion of your work and fulfill the graduation requirements for your high school.
  • For students in their first through third year of high school, we encourage you also to remain diligent in your schoolwork and complete your work as outlined and required by your individual school.
  • For transfer students who are at colleges making similar accommodations, we are happy to work with you individually on expectations for admission to Salve Regina for this coming fall and/or future semesters.

We have always and will continue to do a full holistic review of each applicant, including academic work, involvement, accomplishments and goals, with an understanding that many of your opportunities have been paused or changed. If you have any specific questions or concerns, we encourage you to email to speak with your admissions counselor directly.

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Test Optional FAQ

Will I be at a disadvantage if I decide not to submit standardized test scores?

No. There is no negative impact on your application should you decide not to submit test scores.

Can I be considered for a merit scholarship if I do not submit test scores?

Yes. All applicants are eligible for merit scholarship consideration whether or not they submit SAT or ACT scores.

Are there any exceptions to this policy?

Yes. Students applying to the nursing and education programs are required to submit SAT or ACT scores, as are homeschooled students. International students with a native language other than English are required to submit their TOEFL or IELTS scores as part of their admissions application. International students who have taken the SAT or ACT may submit those scores in lieu of the TOEFL or IELTS.

Please note: For all 2021 and 2022 applicants, the submission of SAT or ACT scores is optional at Salve Regina. This also applies to students applying to nursing or education and home-schooled students (we realize there are currently unique challenges for testing.) Students who do not submit scores will not be disadvantaged in the admissions process. If English is not your first language, the results from a TOEFL, IELTS or Duolingo English proficiency test is still required.

How do I indicate that I do not want my test scores to be considered for admission?

When completing your Common Application, you must complete the required member's page, which includes a question about whether you wish us to consider your test scores. If you do not complete this question, your scores will be used. If you do not complete the question and you do not submit scores, your application will be considered incomplete until the scores have been received or until you notify us in writing of your preference. If you indicate that you do not wish us to consider your test scores, but you have applied to either the nursing or education programs, we will (a) use any scores that have been submitted, or (b) consider your application incomplete until the scores have been received.

What if I have already submitted test scores and do not want them to be considered?

If you have already submitted test scores or they appear on the high school transcript and you prefer not to have the scores considered, the scores will not be used as part of the application review process if you have indicated that preference on the Common Application supplement.

What if I change my mind after I have submitted my application?

If you have already submitted your application, you must notify us in writing of any changes by emailing No changes can be made to your test-optional preference after the committee has reached an admission decision.

How does this affect transfer students?

Transfer students applying to an education program must submit official test scores. These are used to determine eligibility for the program in conjunction with Rhode Island Department of Education testing standards. For more information, contact Jennifer Booth, chairwoman of the Department of Education, at

Does this change the way that Salve Regina evaluates my application?

The most important part of our application review process has always been and will continue to be your day-to-day performance in a strong curriculum. Our best applicants have always been those who challenge themselves beyond the minimum requirements. We also consider your personal statement, letters of recommendation and interests and extracurricular activities.

Why would I choose to submit standardized test scores if they are not required?

If you feel that your test scores provide further evidence of your ability to succeed at Salve Regina, you may wish to submit them. However, if you do not feel your scores are indicative of your academic ability, you may not wish to submit them. You will not be penalized if you decide not to submit scores.