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Undergraduate Admission

Campus Visits

Prospective students are invited to explore the educational opportunities at Drake University by arranging a campus visit. During an individual campus visit, students can meet with an admission counselor and tour the campus with a Drake student. During the week, prospective students may meet with faculty to discuss academic programs and major areas of interest or attend a class. Additional meetings may be arranged if requested when scheduling the appointment. The Office of Admission is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. year-round except holidays. Campus visits are also available on selected Saturdays in the fall and spring. Visitors are encouraged to schedule appointments two weeks in advance of their visit.

In addition to individual visits, students are welcome to attend one of Drake’s Visit Programs, designed to showcase the academic and extracurricular experience at Drake. The Visit Programs include sessions that cover academic offerings, admission process and criteria, campus environment, extracurricular options and financial assistance programs. In addition, students tour the campus with a Drake student and have an opportunity to meet many members of the Drake community. These programs are held on specified dates, which are listed on Drake’s Web site.

To schedule a visit or register to attend a Visit Day, please contact Drake’s Office of Admission at 1-800-44-DRAKE, extension 3181, toll-free, or locally and outside the U.S. at 1-515-271-3181 or visit the admission Web site at

Application For Admission

Application for admission to undergraduate degree programs may be made for any fall, spring or summer term. The deadline for admission into the pre-pharmacy or PharmD programs is granted only in the fall term (see below for specific information). Applications may be obtained by contacting the Office of Admission, or through the Web site:

Office of Admission
Drake University
2507 University Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50311-4505
Toll-free: 1-800-44-DRAKE, extension 3181
Local/outside the United States: 1-515-271-3181
Fax: 1-515-271-2831
World Wide Web:

Applications and all supporting documents should be on file in the Office of Admission by the following dates:

First-year and transfer students, for all undergraduate programs except pre-pharmacy and PharmD:

Fall Term: March 1 to receive priority consideration for admission, financial aid, scholarships and housing.

Spring term: December 1

Summer term: April 15

Applications submitted after March 1 will be considered on a space- and funds-available basis.

Pre-Pharmacy and PharmD applicants:
(Please note that health sciences applicants follow standard first-year and transfer application procedures.) 

First-year pre-pharmacy students:  

Application deadline: December 1

Transfer PharmD students: 

Admission consideration is only at the professional program level. Applications are available through Pharmacy College Application Service (PharmCAS) at Supplemental application and fee required.  Deadline: by the January deadline posted on PharmCAS at

Applicants for the National Alumni Scholarship must apply for admission and submit all other required admission documents by the December 1, 2008, postmark deadline.

Admission to Drake University is selective and considers the complete record of a candidate for admission. Since the University prefers students with varied talents and interests, there is no single and inflexible set of admission standards applied to all candidates for admission. Prospective students bring a variety of academic preparation; therefore, Drake reviews the full record of each candidate for admission and makes a decision based on the qualifications of each individual. Admission is granted without regard to sex, color, creed, religion, race, age, national or ethnic origin or disability. Drake University admits students without regard to sexual orientation, to all rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded to or made available to students at the University.

Beginning October 15, applicants to all programs of study, except to the pre-pharmacy and the PharmD programs, are notified of an admission decision within 4 to 6 weeks after all required materials have been received in the Office of Admission. Candidates for admission to Drake University should address all correspondence to:

Office of Admission
Drake University
2507 University Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50311-4505.

First-year Student Non-Pre-Pharmacy Admission Requirements

High school seniors are admitted for the fall and spring semesters as well as the summer terms. Students are encouraged to apply for admission in the fall of the academic year. March 1 is the priority deadline for admission, financial aid, scholarships and housing; however, applications may be accepted after that date on a space available basis. Applications for the National Alumni Scholarship and all other required admission documents must be postmarked by December 1, 2008.

Each completed application for admission is reviewed individually. Drake University considers this criteria to be important in evaluating qualifications for admission:

  • The quality of preparation for college-level work achieved in high school in terms of coursework and grades. Each high school record is evaluated to determine potential to achieve academic success at Drake University.
  • Satisfactory scores on the American College Test (ACT) or the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT-I).
  • Evidence of involvement and leadership in activities.
  • Written communication as demonstrated through a writing sample.

The admission of high school seniors is contingent upon successful completion of graduation requirements with grades comparable to those upon which the admission decision was based. After graduation, students must provide final, official transcripts showing graduation date, final semester course grades and final rank in class. Failure to provide all necessary documents may result in the cancellation of admission or registration. It also precludes the release of a Drake transcript.

First-year Student Pre-Pharmacy Admission Requirements

Health Science applicants follow standard first-year student application procedures. Admission to the pre-pharmacy program in the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (CPHS) is offered only for the fall term.

Applying for direct admission to the pre-pharmacy program within the CPHS differs from applying to all other undergraduate programs of study in two ways. There is a strict application deadline, and students are selected from a pool of applicants rather than on a rolling-admission basis. Admission may be granted directly to the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences or to one of Drake’s other colleges and schools.

  • December 1, 2008, is the deadline for direct admission to the CPHS. The application and all required documents must be postmarked no later than December 1, 2008. All required documents must reach the Office of Admission no later than December 10, 2008. Notification of admission decisions for priority applicants is made in January.

First-Year Student Application Requirements

  • Completed application for admission with the $25 non-refundable application fee (waived for students who apply online.)
  • Official high school transcript.
  • Official test scores from either the American College Test (ACT) or the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT-I).
  • High School Report and Counselor Recommendation Form.
  • Personal essay is required.

Prospective students who graduated from high school four or more years prior to applying for admission and who did not take the ACT or SAT-I examination should contact the Office of Admission. Students who were enrolled at other colleges or universities must submit official transcripts from each institution attended. Failure to provide official transcripts from each institution attended or any misrepresentation on the application for admission may result in the cancellation of admission or registration. It may also preclude the release of an official Drake transcript.

Equivalency Diploma

Candidates for admission who are at least 18 years of age and hold equivalency diplomas issued by state departments of education are eligible for admission consideration. To be considered, candidates must submit an official transcript of all high school work attempted and a transcript of General Education Development (GED) credentials. Prospective students who did not take an ACT or SAT examination while in high school or within four years of leaving high school are required to take the Minnesota Scholastic Aptitude Test (MSAT) and should contact the Office of Admission.

Veterans and current members of the U.S. Armed Forces who have completed the GED, the Comprehensive College Test or the General Examinations of the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) should apply to their state department of education for equivalency diplomas. Official certification should be sent by the state department of education directly to the Drake Office of Admission.

Transfer Student Non-pharmacy Admission Requirements

Drake welcomes transfer students from two- and four-year institutions. Transfer applicants with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 (“C”) on a 4.0 scale, or the equivalent, for all college work attempted at an accredited institution are considered for admission to Drake University. However, a 2.5 minimum cumulative GPA is recommended for admission. Transfer applicants must be in good academic standing at the last institution attended. Admission to specific programs and majors may require a higher GPA.

Transfer applicants are encouraged to submit the application for admission and supporting documents by March 1 for entrance to the fall term and by December 1 for entrance to the spring term.

Transfer Student Non-pharmacy Application Requirements

  • Completed application for admission with the $25 non-refundable application fee (waived for students who apply online.)
  • Official transcripts from all postsecondary institutions attended, including summer terms.
  • If fewer than 24 semester hours of successful college work have been completed at the point of application, transfer applicants also must submit final, official high school transcripts and ACT or SAT-I scores. Or, when appropriate, an alternative test may be required.
  • Personal essay is strongly encouraged.

A final, official transcript of all college work must be provided prior to enrollment.

A student suspended for academic or other reasons at another institution, or otherwise not in good standing, is not eligible for admission to, or enrollment in Drake University for one year following the imposition of the suspension.

Transfer applicants must request that each postsecondary institution previously attended send an official transcript of all work attempted directly to the Office of Admission. Attendance at each institution must be reported whether credit was earned and regardless of the applicant’s preference. Failure to report all previous academic work is considered sufficient cause for rejection of an application or cancellation of admission or registration. It also may preclude the later release of a Drake transcript.

Transfer Student PharmD Application Requirements

Transfer students are considered for admission only to the professional level of the Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) program. Admission is not offered to transfer applicants at the preprofessional level. All professional-program applicants must complete the application through the Pharmacy College Application Service (PharmCAS) available at, as well as the supplemental application. The Drake University application cannot be accepted for this program.

Drake’s application deadline is December 1, 2008 for fall 2009 admission, and early application is strongly recommended. Applicants must sit for the PCAT no later than October 2008 and scores must be submitted directly to PharmCAS at code [0104].

International Student Admission Requirements

Applications for admission to undergraduate degree programs or to the Intensive English Program are submitted to the Office of Admission. Students are strongly encouraged to apply for admission before March 1, the priority deadline for scholarship and financial aid consideration. Applications may accepted, however, throughout the year if space is available. Students may apply for admission for the fall or spring terms. Pre-pharmacy and PharmD applicants should refer to the first-year and transfer-student sections for specific information on application guidelines and deadlines.

International undergraduate students are eligible for all merit scholarships awarded by the Office of Admission with the exception of National Merit Scholarships. Please refer to that section for detailed information about these awards. They are also eligible to receive aid based on financial need. For more information, see the Financial Aid section of the catalog.

Applicants wishing to improve their language proficiency before beginning an academic program may apply for admission to both an academic program and the Intensive English Program. Drake offers conditional admission to all programs of study at the undergraduate level (except pre-pharmacy) to applicants who meet the University’s academic requirements but first need to improve their English. To enroll in Drake degree courses on a full-time basis, students must achieve a TOEFL score of at least 71 (iBT), 197 (CBT) or 530 (PBT). Students with scores between 54 and 71, 157 and 197, or 480 and 530 may be approved to enroll in both degree courses and English classes, each on a part-time basis. Students whose TOEFL scores are less than 54, 157 or 480 are asked to enroll in English classes on a full-time basis.

Drake University is authorized by federal law to enroll nonimmigrant students and exchange visitors. International students are required to submit proof of financial resources before an I-20 or DS-2019 is issued respectively for the F-1 or J-1 visa.

Students who have sat for the General Certificate of Education Advanced Level Examinations can be awarded six to eight hours of credit per subject passed at the Advanced Level. Other national examinations may yield advanced-standing credit. Applicants who have completed the full International Baccalaureate diploma program are eligible for approximately one year of advanced-standing credit. Credit for both higher and standard levels is awarded through course-by-course evaluation. Partial completion of the IB requires a course-by-course evaluation. For more information, see the Advanced Placement and College Credit section of the catalog.

Part-Time Undergraduate Students Admission Requirements

A student enrolled in fewer than 10 credit hours of coursework during any fall or spring semester is considered a part-time student. Applicants considering completing a Drake degree on a part-time basis through evening classes should contact the department chair in disciplines of their proposed majors to make certain all required courses are available as evening classes.

Part-time degree applicants are required to meet the same standards for admission as full-time applicants.

Transfer of Credit

Drake considers for admission transfer applicants with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 (“C”) on a 4.0 scale, or the equivalent, for all college work attempted. However, a 2.5 minimum cumulative GPA is recommended for admission. Once a student is admitted, the Office of Admission coordinates the evaluation of official transcripts documenting previous college-level work completed.

Transfer students must request that a transcript bearing the official seal and signature of the official in charge of records be sent directly to Drake’s Office of Admission by each college or university previously attended. Transcripts that have been in the student’s possession are not considered official documents.

Drake University considers full transfer credit for courses in which the applicant received a grade of “A,” “B,” “C” (where “C” is equal to 2.00), or the equivalent of “P” on a pass-fail system where “P” is specifically designated as indicating a quality of work no lower than “C” on a conventional grading scale.

Grades earned in courses accepted for transfer are not included in the GPA to be maintained at Drake University. The credits, however, do count toward the total number required for graduation. Because of differences in major requirements for various degrees, there is no assurance that all courses transferred will apply toward the college/school or major degree requirements.

Transfer students may receive credit for academic courses taken at postsecondary institutions that were regionally accredited at the time the courses were taken. Courses accepted for transfer credit must parallel courses offered at Drake University or otherwise be appropriate for college-level credit. Additional courses may be accepted for credit at the discretion of the dean of the Drake college or school in which a student is enrolled.

Credit may be granted for a combination of relevant work completed in (a) college-level nondegree, extension or correspondence courses offered through an accredited collegiate institution that accepts the credit for its own degree or (b) courses satisfactorily completed in noncollegiate organizations that are recommended at the baccalaureate level by the American Council on Education.

Transfer students may be awarded credit for satisfactory scores in subject-matter tests of the College Level Examination Program. For more information, see the Advanced Placement and College Credit by Examination section of the catalog.

Drake University accepts a maximum of 66 semester hours of transfer credit from two-year institutions if the courses completed are parallel to courses offered at Drake, appropriate for college-level credit or are in accordance with current course articulation agreements with a specific community college. A total of 16 semester hours of elective credit may be granted for vocational-technical courses at the discretion of the dean of the Drake college or school in which a student is enrolled.

A maximum of 94 semester hours of transfer credit may be applied to any Drake degree (with the exception of pharmacy students, where up to 178 hours of transfer credit may be applied). A maximum of 66 hours of acceptable college credit may be transferred from courses completed at two-year institutions as any part of the first 94 semester hours (178 hours for pharmacy) toward a bachelor’s degree.

Transfer students must successfully complete their last 30 hours in residence at Drake University.

A preliminary degree audit of transfer credit is forwarded to prospective students following admission. When final, official transcripts have been received, a final degree audit is completed and mailed to the student.

The degree audit represents evaluation of remaining major, minor and other degree requirements to earn a Drake degree. Audits are prepared by a representative of the dean’s office of the Drake college or school in which the student plans to enroll. In consultation with the dean, transfer students may elect to satisfy either the major requirements outlined in the Drake catalog from the time of matriculation at the first college or the major requirements in the Drake catalog current at the time of transfer.

Unclassified Students (Non-degree)

A student interested in taking courses for academic credit but who is not seeking a degree is welcome to enroll as an unclassified student. Students who have been denied admission to Drake are not eligible to enroll as unclassified students without the permission of the vice president of admission and financial aid. Nondegree students (unclassified) are held to the same probation and suspension standards as admitted, degree-seeking students. Hours earned as an unclassified student may or may not apply toward a degree program.

Once 24 credit hours have been accumulated, the student will be contacted concerning his/her academic goals, past performance and intent to be admitted to the University. If the student does not intend to pursue a Drake degree, he/she may continue as an unclassified student. Unclassified students who want to become degree-seeking candidates must submit the application for admission and official transcripts of all courses attempted at all postsecondary institutions attended.

Applicants are required to meet the same standards for admission as transfer students. The Office of Admission evaluates credit for the courses completed, including hours earned at Drake. The dean’s office of the appropriate college or school decides how each course accepted applies toward Drake’s degree requirements.

Credit for Educational Experiences in the Armed Services

Drake University follows the recommendations for baccalaureate credit in the Guide to Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services of the Office on Educational Credit of the American Council on Education. Credit is allowed as specified in the upper-division baccalaureate category and the lower-division baccalaureate/associate degree category.

Re-enrollment for Undergraduate Students

Degree-seeking full- or part-time undergraduates whose studies are interrupted for a period of one or more fall or spring semesters, are required to submit an application for re-enrollment through the Dean’s Office of the college or school of their last enrollment. Students are encouraged to begin the re-enrollment process at least two months prior to the beginning of the semester or summer session in which they intend to re-enroll. Re-enrollment forms are available from the Office of the Student Records and Academic Information and at /cgi-bin/reenrollment.cgi. Returning students who intend to apply for financial assistance are encouraged to submit all required documents by March 1.

Re-enrolling students who have registered at other college(s) after leaving Drake must provide official transcripts from all institutions attended. Students are subject to the academic regulations and requirements in effect at the time of re-enrollment.

High School Visiting Student Program And Post-Secondary Enrollment Options Act (PSEO)

Drake University provides students who are currently enrolled in high school and desire the challenge of academic study above and beyond what is available in the high school curriculum to investigate the opportunity of dual enrollment. Students are eligible to take a maximum of two courses during the fall and spring semesters in day or evening courses and one course per summer session as visiting students at Drake University while completing their remaining high school graduation requirements. Enrollment in requested courses is subject to course availability. Students in the Visiting Student Program also may qualify under the Post-Secondary Enrollment Options Act for financial assistance.

To qualify as visiting students to take courses while still in high school, students must provide a copy of their high school transcript, rank in the top one-third of their classes and have scored a composite of 90 on the PSAT, 900 (critical reading and math only) on the SAT-I, 21 on the ACT PLAN or 21 on the ACT. Applicants to this program must complete a Visiting Student Form, available in the Office of Admission or at their high schools, and receive approval from their school counselor.

Admission to Summer Sessions

Prospective students who want to begin a Drake degree program during the summer session must apply for admission through the Office of Admission. Students who wish to enroll in Drake summer courses for personal enrichment or for transfer to another institution may do so without formal admission to a Drake degree program.

Visiting Students

Students who regularly attend other colleges or universities and register at Drake University for the purpose of earning credit to transfer to their home institution are required to complete the Visiting Student Form, available at the Office of Admission. Visiting students are encouraged to seek course-by-course approval from their home institutions prior to registering for specific courses at Drake.

Students who want to attend Drake University beyond one summer session or fall or spring semester must submit the application for admission and required documents.

Following Admission

Drake University supports the National Candidates Reply Date, which allows admitted students to choose without penalty among offers of admission and financial aid until May 1. Full-time admitted students planning to enroll at Drake for the fall semester are required to submit the Enrollment Reply Card with a nonrefundable $250 tuition deposit. Professional PharmD transfer students are encouraged to submit the Enrollment Reply Card and required enrollment deposit of $350 by May 1. The nonrefundable deposit is credited to the first semester’s tuition account. Part-time students must return the Enrollment Reply Card, but are not required to submit the deposit. Comprehensive instructions for replying to the offer of admission are mailed with admission notification.

Full-time students must live in the Drake residence halls during any period of University enrollment within two years following high school graduation unless they are married, live at home or live with relatives. Other students may choose to live in student residence halls if space is available.

Residence hall contracts are mailed to students with notification of admission. The contract should be submitted with the required $100 housing deposit to the Office of Residence Life. Students are encouraged to return the student residence contract and housing deposit as soon as possible after admission. The $100 housing deposit is fully refundable until May 1.

For more information about Drake University, write:

Office of Admission
Drake University
2507 University Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50311-4505

Or call:

Toll-free: 1-800-44-DRAKE, extension 3181
Local/outside the U.S.: 1-515-271-3181
Fax: 1-515-271-2831

So that Drake may respond appropriately to your inquiry, please include in your correspondence the following information about you and your interests:

  • Are you seeking information about undergraduate or graduate programs?
  • Do you have a degree? If so, please specify.
  • Would you be an entering first-year student, transfer student or graduate student?
  • Are you an international student?
  • Please indicate your anticipated term of enrollment.
  • Please indicate the school you are currently attending (high school or college) or have most recently attended.
  • Please provide your full mailing address, telephone number and e-mail address.

Summer Registration/Orientation

Drake University offers several summer orientation and registration programs for new undergraduate students. Information about these programs is forwarded to new students following admission.

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