Below are answers to some frequently asked questions regarding admission to the McIntire School of Commerce:
I am a first-year student who has completed all of the prerequisite courses. Can I apply?
The School requires that students complete a minimum of 54 credits (60-63 credits recommended) and strongly recommends students be enrolled full-time for a minimum of two academic years before enrollment as this is critical for student's academic and emotional maturity. First-year students may apply if they have completed all requirements before enrollment; however, it is strongly discouraged and extremely rare that a student be admitted after only one year of full-time college-level coursework. It is the philosophy of the McIntire School of Commerce that students should be broadly educated to deal with the complex issues of the business community and society at large.
Students who wish to graduate in three years may consider working toward an undergraduate degree in the College of Arts & Sciences or another school of enrollment at UVA and may wish to pursue the M.S. in Commerce Program after graduation.
Can I apply as a third-year at UVA?
Third-year students may apply but should realize they must complete a five-year baccalaureate program; they may wish to consider other opportunities, including the McIntire Business Institute (MBI) and the M.S. in Commerce Program.
Do I need to have all of the prerequisites completed by the time I apply to McIntire?
All prerequisites, including the foreign language prerequisite, must be completed by the time a student enters the School in the fall of their third year, not by the time the student applies. It is quite common for applicants to be enrolled in several prerequisites during the spring semester of their second year. Students who are not enrolled in the prerequisites upon submitting their application must detail on the application how they plan to complete the missing prerequisite course(s) and demonstrate successful progress toward completion. Students who are missing prerequisite course(s) are strongly encouraged to attend walk-in advising.
What is the application process actually like? Is there a sample application I can review?
The process of applying to the McIntire School begins in mid to late November, with the application due at the end of January. The application is available online in the fall. View a sample version of the application here.
What factors are considered by the Admission Committee?
The Admission Committee reviews each applicant holistically, and no one factor guarantees admission. Factors taken into consideration include academic performance (GPA, performance in courses related to business, degree of difficulty of courses, and course load taken); co-curricular activities including volunteer and work experience; and evidence of solid communication, teamwork, leadership, and personal skills. Students must have both solid academic and co-curricular performance and display a level of maturity to show they will contribute to the McIntire classroom.
What GPA do I need?
GPA is only one factor in the Admission Committee's review of applicants. There is no minimum GPA, as the committee evaluates multiple criteria in the holistic evaluation process. The average GPA for current UVA students and external transfer students has remained relatively steady over the years, with a wide range between lowest and highest cumulative GPA of students accepted and denied admission.
I received a C in a prerequisite. Should I still apply?
Absolutely. No single factor or grade will determine the admission decision and there is no GPA cut-off or minimum GPA requirement. The Admission Committee reviews applications holistically, and the application itself allows for students to tell their story through their academic performance, activities and essays.
Will my standardized test (SAT I, ACT, TOEFL) scores be considered as a part of my application?
Effective fall 2018, SAT or ACT scores are no longer required for applicants. For prospective transfer applicants, it is recommended that non-native English speakers take the TOEFL or IELTS to be competitive for admission.
Should I submit letters of recommendation with my application?
For current UVA students, no. The Admission Committee does not require or accept letters of recommendation. Applicants should use the application to demonstrate academic performance, activities and personal characteristics.
For prospective transfer students, yes. The Common Application accepts "Academic Evaluator" recommendations. It is recommended that one or more be submitted as the Admission Committee uses them in the holistic evaluation of each applicant.
Is an interview required for admission?
Do I need professional experience on my application to have a better chance at being accepted?
The Admission Committee does not weigh business-related activities over other co-curricular or extracurricular experiences. The committee considers many factors, including academic performance, co-curricular and extracurricular activities, and personal characteristics. Professional experience, such as a job, internship, networking experience, or conference, are all valued activities which help students develop hard and soft skills and learn more about this business world; however, the committee would like to see students broadening their perspectives and experiences, gaining skills and exploring interests.
When are students notified of their admission decision?
UVA students should receive decision letters no later than the Friday of spring break via UVA email. Applications are either accepted, deferred, or denied at this time. The Admission Committee defers applications so that they can learn more about the applicant through an additional essay and spring semester grades. Students whose admission is deferred are notified by UVA email in late May or early June.
Transfer applicants are notified by the UVA Office of Undergraduate Admission and should follow the deadlines set by that office.
May I take COMM courses at a higher level before being accepted?
COMM 1800, 2010, and 2020 are the only courses with the COMM mnemonic that are required prior to enrollment. COMM 3410 "Commercial Law" may be taken before enrollment and is included in students' 39 required Commerce hours if taken at UVA. For students transferring from other institutions, Commercial Law will transfer, but students will need to take an additional Commerce class to meet the 39 Commerce credit requirement. No other 3000- or 4000-level courses taken before enrollment may be used to satisfy Commerce major requirements.
Can I major in something else in addition to Commerce?
The McIntire curriculum allows for electives to be taken inside or outside the Commerce School. After enrollment at McIntire, a minimum of 39 Commerce hours is required over the four semesters. For the Commerce Class of 2017, 20% of Commerce students completed a second major or minor outside the McIntire School.
What are Commerce classes really like?
Through McIntire's Integrated Core Experience, Commerce courses are dynamic, interactive, and engaging. Students are expected to interact with each other and their professors, actively participate in the course discussion, and work on team projects.
McIntire faculty design courses that are transformative. Take a look at a COMMTalk from Professor Ryan Nelson, "Designing Your Life: How We Use Design Thinking at McIntire" to get insight on our faculty's approach to creating excellent, interesting, and applicable courses for every McIntire student.
In addition, Commerce Professor Sherri Moore describes her approach to teaching and very popular COMM 3410 "Commercial Law" course here.
I am an Echols Scholar. If accepted, what will happen to my Echols Scholar status?
Echols Scholars find the McIntire School a great academic environment to continue their academic pursuits. The only real impact Echols Scholars will experience on transferring to the McIntire School is loss of priority registration; however, once enrolled in McIntire, priority registration is much less important due to the small size of the School and classes. The Echols notation from entry year will always remain on the transcript, and once selected for the Echols program, students will always be welcome at Echols events and alumni activities.
What is the tuition at the McIntire School?
Recognizing the value-added benefits of McIntire's undergraduate business program, the UVA Board of Visitors approved a "differential" tuition amount to be added to McIntire students' UVA tuition amount. The differential tuition amount is included in the students' cost of attendance for financial aid purposes, and students continue to apply and receive aid through the University's Student Financial Services Office. McIntire continues to support AccessUVA, the University's financial aid program, allocating a significant portion of McIntire tuition revenues to the program, as well as adding $300,000 of private scholarship funds to support new undergraduates entering McIntire in 2018 and beyond. More information about differential tuition can be found here.
Does the Virginia Prepaid Education Program (VPEP) cover the cost of differential tuition?
VPEP does not cover the additional McIntire tuition. VPEP's contract states that "if there are additional charges for a specific course of study, such as nursing or engineering, or for more than a full-time course load, these additional costs are not covered by VPEP."
Can I pursue my degree online?
At this time, the B.S. in Commerce is delivered in-person and cannot be completed online.
McIntire continually innovates its courses and curriculum to deliver engaging and effective content to its students. COMM 2010 "Introduction to Financial Accounting" and COMM 2020 "Introduction to Managerial Accounting" are now being offered online. Why? Professor Roger Martin explains in his COMMTalk, "Creating Time and Space: Emerging Online Offerings at McIntire."
The McIntire Business Institute offers several certificate programs in an online format, including the Certificate in Business Fundamentals, the Certificate in Sustainable Business, and the Certificate in Cybersecurity for Business Leaders.
Can I graduate in less than four years at McIntire?
No. The McIntire School's B.S. in Commerce degree is a two-year, full-time program. Students are not allowed to complete the Commerce degree in less than four fall/spring semesters, nor are they allowed to remain for more than four fall/spring semesters. Students must complete a minimum of 57 credits over four semesters in order to graduate with a McIntire degree. Learn more about McIntire graduation requirements here.
Can I study abroad while completing my McIntire degree?
Absolutely. The School encourages all students to have a significant global experience and McIntire offers both short-term and semester-long study-abroad options for current and prospective students. McIntire's Global Programs Office looks forward to meeting with any student interested in engaging in a global experience.
Should I go to the Commerce School if I want to go to graduate school?
Of 2,000 McIntire alums surveyed, 40% earned graduate degrees. Some graduates go straight to law schools and M.S. in accounting programs. Others work for a few years and then enroll in M.B.A. programs.