Recruitment and Admission Services

The Admissions Office is responsible for making undergraduate admissions decisions, awarding Renewable Entrance Scholarships and Named Entrance Awards, and overseeing University Preparatory (UPrep) courses. Recruitment is responsible for the promotion of Saint Mary’s programs and services to prospective students.

Type Telephone Email
General Inquiries: 902-420-5415
Applying & Entrance Scholarships 902-420-5415
Application or Scholarship Decisions & Status 902-491-6438
Student Loans 902-420-5582
Residence 902-420-5598

Students seeking program information and/or applications can find complete details at:

To book a campus tour, please visit Campus tours | Future Students | Saint Mary's University ( or contact us at

Visitors to our campus are advised to park on Robie Street, and enter through the McNally Main Entrance (unless otherwise instructed) where you will be met by a student ambassador.  Please note that Saturday tours may not be as comprehensive as week day tours, as some areas are not accessible.

Each tour is approximately 60 minutes in length. Participants have the opportunity to visit our classrooms, library, bookstore, residences, athletics facilities and dining halls. One week advance booking is recommended.

Centre for New Students - New School, New People, New Place

As a new student at Saint Mary’s, you may have a lot of questions you need answered.  That’s what the Centre for New Students is for - to help you find answers to your questions.  Located in the main entrance of the McNally Building, the Centre for New Students welcomes new and prospective students.  At the Centre, students can be linked with the appropriate academic department, support services, or given information about what the Saint Mary’s community has to offer.

The Centre for New Students provides:

  • Pre-admission information for high school students interested in full-time or part-time studies.
  • A “home base” information area for all new students once they arrive on campus.
  • Referrals to the appropriate academic, administrative or support services.
  • Assistance for new students in understanding the course selection process and determining their academic timetable.

Students are invited to drop by anytime to chat or to take advantage of the many brochures and other publications designed to help with the transition to university life at Saint Mary’s University.

If you would like to schedule an appointment with the Centre for New Students, please call 902-491-8691 or e-mail us at

Admissions Information

Students seeking admission to an undergraduate program at Saint Mary’s University can apply online.  Details can be found at 

Written correspondence and supporting documents should be sent to:

Admissions Office
Saint Mary’s University
923 Robie St.
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H 3C3

Telephone: 902-491-6438
Fax: 902-420-5073

1. Procedures for Admission to Undergraduate Programs

 a. Admission Timelines: There are four admission terms:  September, January, May and July.

Completed applications are considered on an ongoing basis and students can expect to receive a reply within two weeks of receipt of the application and all supporting documents.
“International” applicants should apply early enough to obtain their study permit and “Transfer” applicants must ensure that official transcript(s) arrive in the Admissions Office at least 4 weeks prior to the beginning of the term start date to ensure adequate time for admissions assessment and for advanced standing assessment.

bDocuments: Applicants are required to submit all requested supplemental items before their application will be reviewed. Interim Transcripts may be accepted for in-progress courses. Applicants will be required to submit official transcripts of final grades once they are available. Current Nova Scotia high school students who provide their provincial student ID number and consent should not submit additional transcripts as the University will access these electronically. Applicants who have completed courses at another post-secondary educational institution must request an official transcript be sent to Saint Mary’s University. Failure to report all previous post-secondary institutions attended will result in dismissal from the University.

c. Former Saint Mary’s University students: Former Saint Mary’s University students not enrolled in the previous academic year must re-apply through the Admissions Office.  

2. Requirements for Admission to Undergraduate Programs

a. General Considerations

Possession of the minimum requirements does not establish the right of an applicant to be admitted or readmitted to the University. The University reserves the right to accept or reject any applicant.

bHigh School (Secondary School) Admission

Students are required to have completed the equivalent of grade 12 level university preparatory English and 4 other university preparatory courses.  The overall average should be equivalent to at least 70% with no individual grade below 60%.  Specific program requirements are as follows:

  • Bachelor of Arts
    • English
    • 4 other academic university preparatory courses
  • Bachelor of Environmental Studies
    • English
    • 4 other academic university preparatory courses
  • Bachelor of Commerce
    • English
    • Academic Mathematics
    • 3 other academic university preparatory courses
  • Bachelor of Science
    • English
    • Pre-calculus Mathematics
    • 1 Science
    • 2 other academic university preparatory courses
  • Diploma in Engineering
    • English
    • Pre-calculus Mathematics
    • Chemistry
    • Any other science (Physics recommended)
    • 1 other academic university preparatory course

For a list of requirements by specific curriculum or region, visit the Future Students pages of our website or see the Undergraduate Viewbook.

c. International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma

Students may be admitted if they have completed the IB Diploma with a total score of 24 points and a minimum grade of 3 in required courses.  Specific course requirements are the same as those in 2b above.  
Students who have scores of 5, 6 or 7 in HL and/or SL courses may be eligible to receive university credit for these courses.  Students with total points of 30 or above may receive up to 42 credit hours of university credit.
Students with a combination of IB Diploma courses and regular courses will be considered for admission if they meet the specific course requirements as in 2b above.

d. Quebec

In order to be considered for admission, students must complete one year of CEGEP and satisfy the specific subject requirements as noted above in 2b. Credits for students with two years of CEGEP will be assessed separately.

e. Access Program

Canadian high school graduates who do not satisfy the normal admission requirements for their chosen program may be eligible for admission to the Access Program.  Students must demonstrate strong potential for success in university studies.  If admitted, students must comply with any additional program requirements as specified by their Dean.  Students should contact the Admissions and Recruitment Office for details on the application process.

f. American School System

i. In order to be considered for admission, students must complete Grade 12 with 16 points. Students seeking admission to Arts must have 4 points in English and 12 points in other academic subjects. Students seeking admission to Engineering and Science must have 3 points in mathematics and at least 3 points in science subjects. Students seeking admission to Commerce must have 3 points in mathematics.

ii. Students must arrange to provide the Admissions Office with a high school transcript, and SAT score results.

g. British Patterned System of Education

For students studying a British patterned curriculum (i.e. CXC, CAPE, AICE, GCE, GCSE, IGCSE or WASSCE) must meet the following requirements:

i. Students must pass at least five subjects, two of which must be at the Advanced Level, and satisfy the specific subject requirements in 2b. Students who achieve above average results in a minimum of five subjects will be considered for admission.

ii. Students who receive a final grade of A, B or C in approved GCE A Level examined subjects will be eligible for advanced standing credit, to a maximum of 18 credit hours.  The official examination certificate from one of the examination boards ((AQA, OCR, Edexcel, WJEC and CCEA) must be sent to the Admissions Office.

Students who receive a final grade of I, II or III in approved CAPE Advanced Level examined subjects will be eligible for advanced standing credit, to a maximum of 18 credit hours.

h. International High School (Secondary School) Admission

For international applicants, the general requirements for admission for each program are comparable to those in 2b, with the noted exception that we will consider a senior-level language course in the applicant's native language in lieu of the grade 12 English language course requirement. Applicants must also meet the English language proficiency requirements outlined in 2o.

i. Transfer Admission

Applicants who have been enrolled in an academic program at another university are required to have achieved a minimum average of C and meet the minimum core course requirements, as outlined in 2b, for admission to their intended program. If admitted, transfer students may receive advanced standing credit hour recognition in conformity with the principles and procedures stated in Academic Regulation 20.  For all courses from non-Canadian post-secondary institutions, detailed course syllabi and/or course outlines descriptions must be submitted before any advanced standing will be evaluated. Failure to report all post-secondary institutions previously attended may result in dismissal from the University.

j. Mature Admission

To qualify for admission as a mature student, the applicant must be at least twenty-two years of age and must show, through educational upgrading, work experience or community volunteer work, ability to benefit from university level education. Normally, mature applicants must have been out of school for at least five years.

k. Open Studies Admission

i. Individuals interested in taking one or more courses at the University without being registered in an academic program can seek admission as an Open Studies applicant. Open Studies applicants must apply through the Admissions Office. A separate application is required for each academic year or summer session(s) in which the student is enrolled with this admission basis.

ii. Open Studies students must meet the stated prerequisites for any course(s) for which they register. Open Studies students may take no more than thirty (30) credit hours of courses. If Open Studies students wish to continue to study at Saint Mary’s beyond thirty (30) credit hours, they must apply for and be formally admitted to an academic program. Those Open Studies students who are subsequently admitted to academic programs from an Open Studies status may count the university credit hours that they have earned as Open Studies students.  All courses attempted at the University will remain a part of the students’ permanent records.

iii. Under special circumstances and with the permission of the appropriate Dean, those applying directly from high school may be admitted as Open Studies students in Saint Mary’s courses for which they have the necessary prerequisites.

l. Upgrading Admission

i. Applicants who already hold a degree or professional certificate may apply to enroll in a course(s) to upgrade their qualifications. A separate application is required for each academic year or summer session in which the student is enrolled with this admission basis.

ii. Upgrading students are required to follow normal registration procedures. Such students must meet the stated prerequisites for the course(s) for which they register. The maximum number of courses in which a student is permitted to register under this admission category is thirty (30) credit hours. The Dean of the Faculty in which a course(s) is offered may authorize an additional course(s) over this limit.

mAuditing Admission

Applicants who are interested in auditing a course (see Academic Regulation 2) are required to apply for admission. If admitted Auditing students are required to follow normal registration procedures and pay regular tuition fees. These students must meet any stated prerequisites for the course(s) for which they register.

n. Visiting Student on a Letter of Permission (LOP)

i. Applicants currently enrolled at another institution, who have letters of permission to take courses at Saint Mary’s University for transfer of credit hours to their home institution, must apply for admission as a Visiting Student. If admitted, Visiting students are required to follow normal registration procedures.

ii. In addition, these students must file a Letter of Permission with the Admissions Office at Saint Mary’s. Visiting students from institutions in Halifax will have their grades sent automatically to their home institution.  All other students must formally request transcripts to be sent to their home institution. This can be done at the Service Centre.  Saint Mary’s shall not be held responsible for meeting the deadlines for submission of grades of other universities.

o. English Language Proficiency Requirement

Students whose first language is not English, and who have not attended an English language secondary school, are required to take one of the following standardized English language proficiency tests.

  • International Test of English Language Testing System (IELTS): minimum 6.5 with no individual score below 6.0
  • Cambridge B2 First, C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency: minimum score of 176 with no individual score below 169
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): minimum score of 80 overall with no band score below 20
  • Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL): minimum score of 60 with no individual band below 50
  • Pearson PTE score of 58 or better
  • Duolingo English Test (DET): score of 120 or higher
  • Completion of university preparatory English at a Languages Canada accredited school recognized by Saint Mary's University
  • Completion of three (3) years in a Canadian, British or an American-patterned secondary school where the language of instruction and examination is English

3. Graduate Admission

Admission to a graduate program at the University is covered in the Graduate Academic Calendar.

4. Entrance Scholarship and Awards

Renewable Entrance Scholarships and Named Entrance Awards are awarded by the Admissions Office. More information can be found online at

The Scholarship and Bursary program for current students is administered by the Financial Aid & Awards Office. Visit our website for more information: