FAQ Graduate

The following is a list of questions frequently asked by International Students. Throughout this document, Northern Michigan University is referred to by its initials, NMU.

Is NMU a public or private school? - NMU is a publicly funded State university.

What NMU graduate programs are available to international students? -



Business Administration (MBA)

*Criminal Justice




Public Administration

  • Master of Public Administration (MPA)


*Online only.

What is the Graduate Program TOEFL requirement at NMU? – 213 computer-based, 550 paper-based, or 79 iBT. IELTS of 6.5 or better. If English is your native language, a TOEFL is not required. Our school code is 1560.

What exams are required for admission to NMU graduate programs? GRE exam results are needed (no minimum score required) for admission to the Biology, Biology/Biochemistry, Psychology, and Public Administration programs. A GMAT score of 500 is desired for the Business Administration (MBA) program. Students with lower GMAT scores may be conditionally accepted if they have a superior GPA and writing skills.

What is the minimum graduate program GPA requirement? – A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for admission to most programs; however, certain fields of study may have acceptance GPAs that are higher or lower, based on the competitiveness of the program.

What does it cost to attend NMU? – To attend for ONE year (TWO semesters) your costs would be approximately as follows (based on 2013-2014 tuition):

One year
(Two semesters)
Undergraduate Graduate MBA ESL
Tuition & Fees $14,113 $10,482 $10,618 $14,113
Room & Board $8,696 $8,696 $8,696 $8,696
Books & Supplies $800 $800 $800 $800
Health Insurance $1,478 $1,478 $1,478 $1,478
Personal & Travel $1,850 $1,850 $1,850 $1,850
Total Cost  $26,937 $23,306 $23,442 $26,937

Is there financial assistance available to International Students? – Yes, students formally enrolled in an NMU graduate program can apply for graduate assistantships. International students should apply one year prior to their expected enrollment date to ensure sufficient time for application processing. Application deadline for the fall assistantship is July 15, winter assistantship is November 15, and the summer assistantship is March 15. In addition to a stipend of approximately $8,900 USD, most assistantships include a tuition waiver. It is advantageous for an applicant to hold a high GPA. Click here for the graduate assistant handbook. Click here for a printable application.

How do I apply to an NMU graduate program? – 1) Complete the International Graduate Student Admissions Application here. 2) Pay US$50 application fee (must be in U.S. Funds). 3) Mail official transcripts with professional translation. 4) Prepare Credential Evaluation with ECE or WES. 5) Supply English proficiency and other test scores required by your specific graduate program. 6) Submit supporting documentation if required by your program. 7) Provide certification of finances with bank verification. International students must apply for admission one year prior to their expected start date to ensure time for application processing.

Does NMU accept international students to online graduate programs? – Yes, but you will not be granted a visa to study these degrees because they are entirely online. NMU’s online graduate programs include Education.

Where is NMU located? – In the northern mid-west region of the U.S.A. Marquette is a small city in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, on the southern shore of Lake Superior, the largest freshwater lake in the world. Three major airline hubs serve Marquette: Detroit, Michigan - 750 km; Chicago, Illinois - 640 km; and Minneapolis, Minnesota - 645 km.

Is it cold that far north? – NMU is located in the northern part of the U.S.A., so winters have cold weather and snow. The average winter temperature is -5 degrees C. However, the NMU campus has many covered walkways that allow students to move between many buildings without going outside. The winter months also provide opportunities for fun activities such as skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing.

Is NMU a safe campus? – Yes, NMU offers a very secure environment. Being a medium sized campus, located in a city of only 23,000 people in a rural part of Michigan, the crime rate is low.

Do I need a car to attend NMU? – No, NMU is an easily navigable, compact campus in a small city; many students do not have cars. Students have access to the Wildcat Shuttle, which offers students, faculty and staff free, reliable bus transportation. For more information, visit http://www.nmu.edu/publicsafety/node/226.

How many students attend NMU? – Approximately 9,300 students attend NMU.

What is the typical class size? – Class size is generally fewer than 12 students.

Are the international students at NMU active? – Yes, the International Students at NMU have an active organization on campus called the All Nations Club. The club organizes an International Food Festival as well as other fun cultural activities.

Can I work while attending NMU? – You may be able to work for the university for up to 20 hours per week during the fall and winter semesters, and 40 hours per week during the summer. Pay rates may vary, but expect to earn approximately US$7.40 per hour (graduate assistant pay rate and hours differ.) Visa restrictions prohibit International Students from working for an employer other than NMU.

Does NMU have adequate housing for students? – NMU has adequate housing on campus for all students. Students under the age of twenty-one must live on campus for two years (four semesters) or live with a host family; however, prior approval is required.

To contact the Office of Graduate Education and Research, e-mail graduate@nmu.edu, call 906-227-2300 or fax 906-227-2315.