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New Paltz Essay Topics


Admission to SUNY New Paltz is very competitive.

SUNY New Paltz typically receives in excess of 13,500 applications for a freshman class of 1,150.

What kind of high school program is required?

A college preparatory program containing the five core subject areas: 

  • 4 units of English
  • 3-4 units of social sciences/history
  • 3-4 units of college prep mathematics (Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II/Trigonometry)
  • 3-4 units of laboratory science
  • 2-4 units of a language other than English

What is the high school average needed for consideration?

Our review of an applicant's academic work will be by academic year so that we can get a clear, year-by-year picture of achievement and motivation throughout the course of the applicant's high school career.

Weighted high school averages: As so many high schools use weighted averages, we will recalculate the overall average in accordance with the high school profile.  We use only the five core subjects when recalculating the average.

The middle 50% high school averages of our accepted freshmen:  90.0 - 95.0

What is the SAT or ACT score needed for consideration?

SAT: Middle 50% combined EBRW and Math score of accepted freshmen: 1140 -1270

ACT: Middle 50% composite score of accepted freshmen: 24 - 29

We will "super score" the SAT and ACT.  Please include all test results.

What makes an application complete?

  1. Official high school transcript.  We do not accept any self-reported high school transcripts.
  2. Official SAT or ACT scores.  We do not accept scores hand-written on transcripts, student copy score reports, scores listed on the Student Profile of the Common Application or on the SUNY Supplemental Application.
  3. An essay as part of the Common Application or as part of the SUNY Supplemental Application.
  4. A letter of recommendation from the guidance counselor or an academic teacher.

Can additional information be submitted?

Yes, we welcome additional information such as mid-year grades, additional test scores, letters of recommendation (please, no more than three total).

We will not wait for additional material in order to make a decision if the application, test scores, essay and letter of recommendation have already been received.

Does New Paltz accept home schooled students?

Yes, information for home school applicants can be found here.

Does New Paltz accept graduates from online correspondence high schools?

Information for online correspondence high school students can be found here.

Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) Admission Information can be found here.

Applying to New Paltz

Complete either:

Common Application


SUNY Application

The Application fee is $50.00 and is non-refundable.

Please use only one application.

Does New Paltz offer EARLY ACTION?

Yes, Early Action applications must be received and complete by November 15.

Are there application due dates?

Completed applications must be received by:

  • Early Action                                           November 15
  • Regular Admission                                May 1
  • Educational Opportunity Program         April 15
  • Seven-Year Medical Program                 January 15
  • Seven-Year Optometry Program            January 15

SUNY New Paltz reserves the right to alter due dates at any time without prior notification to applicants.


SUNY New Paltz Admission uses email as its official method of communication. In order to assure that applicants receive all communications related to their application, applicants must make sure that the email address provided on their application is correct. Applicants should add SUNY New Paltz to their address books to avoid emails from admissions@newpaltz.edu being sent to spam folders.

Does New Paltz schedule personal interviews?

Given the large number of freshmen applications we cannot honor requests for individual interviews.

Campus Visit Information

We offer daily and weekend Information Sessions (30 minutes) and Student Ambassador -led campus tours (90 minutes).  Schedule your visit online at: www.newpaltz.edu/admissions/visit.html.

Contacting the Office of Undergraduate Admission:

Office hours: Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (academic year); 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. (summer)

  • Address: Office of Undergraduate Admission
  •                100 Hawk Drive
  •                New Paltz, New York 12561
  • Telephone: (845) 257-3200, menu option #2
  • Fax: (845) 257-3209
  • Email: admissions@newpaltz.edu


Freshmen Profile Fall 2017*

Freshman Class1,147
Traditional Freshmen997
Freshmen HS Average (mid 50%)90.0 - 95.0
SAT (EBRW & Math) (mid 50%)1140 - 1270
ACT (mid 50%)24 - 29
EOP Freshmen
EOP Freshmen HS Average (mid 50%)82.0 - 88.0
EOP SAT (EBRW & Math) (mid 50%)930 - 1050
EOP ACT (mid-50%)18 - 22

 * all information as of June 12, 2017

Freshmen Demographic and Geographic Profile (Fall 2017)

New York State95%


NYS Regions:


Hudson Valley


Long Island


New York City


Other New York State



Supplemental Item Packet Submission
Assemble and submit in ONE COMPLETE PACKET the following items:

  • Official College Transcripts:

    Request one set of transcripts from all-post-secondary institutions including transfer colleges and any school where college credit was earned during High School.  If you are in the process of completing a degree, please send an official transcript that shows your current progress.  You will need to submit a final official transcript once your degree has been conferred.  When requesting transcripts, have them sent to your own address.  If the college or university’s policy does not permit official transcripts being sent to a student address, then use the Graduate School’s mailing address. However, clearly note in your application packet which transcript is being sent directly to the Graduate School. Otherwise your application will be coded as incomplete.

    INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS: You must provide a translation and/or an evaluation of your transcript.  We accept translations/evaluations by member organizations of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (www.naces.org).

  • Letters of Recommendation:

    Collect three letters of recommendation from former professors, employers, and/or colleagues who are in a position to comment on your potential for graduate study.  Letters from former professors who taught you in an advanced course would be ideal. Using the letter of recommendation form provided in the supplemental item packet, fill out the top portion and submit the form to your recommender. Ask each recommender to seal his/her letter in a self-addressed envelope that you provide, to sign it across the seal and to return it directly to you.

  • Graduate Admissions Essay:

    Compose a Graduate Admissions Essay that clearly addresses the following:

    • How have your previous experiences contributed to your decision to enter the program?

    • How will graduate study assist you in achieving your future career and educational aspirations?

    • What are your professional goals?

    Your essay should be typed, double-spaced, and between 400-500 words.  Since your essay provides us with a sample of your writing, it should reflect exemplary organization, writing style, and mechanics.  Certain programs have specific guidelines for the admission essay; therefore, refer to your intended program of study's description in the graduate catalog or the departmental website and focus your essay to meeting your program's requirements.

  • Additional Admissions Criteria:

    Some programs require satisfactory scores on standardized tests, verification of a teaching certificate, portfolio or audition as part of the application process. For further information see Admission Requirements.

    English Language Proficiency:

    Prospective international students for whom English is not the native language, and any applicant whose undergraduate degree is from a country where English is not the main language of instruction are required to demonstrate English Language Proficiency.  Review this chart for methods of demonstrating language proficiency.  NOTE: Individual departments may require a score higher than the minimum acceptable score, so students should consult their departments. 

  • Once the Graduate School receives your packet of supplemental items, you will be notified of your student ID and PIN.  To check the status of your application, login using your new student ID and PIN, then select “Processed Applications” from the Application Menu and click on the link for the term that you applied for admission (e.g., Spring 2018).

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