Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

Skip to main content

FAQs for Applicants to Rensselaer

Accordion

General Questions

I submitted my application to RPI. What’s next?

Once we start processing applications (typically in October), within a few days you will receive an email (to the email address that you provided on the application) that contains your Rensselaer ID number (RIN) and login information for your online application portal where you may check the status of your application.

We highly encourage students to create a free web-based email account (such as Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.) to use solely for their college search/application process, rather than using a school-based email address. School-based addresses often have deliverability issues, and are no longer accessible after graduation.

This application portal is also where you will be able to view your admission decision when it becomes available. Please make sure that you are checking this email address and your portal regularly, and make sure that you check your spam/junk folders, as sometimes the confirmation email gets misdirected. If you need to change the email address we have in your file, please email adm_updates@rpi.edu. Nearly all of our correspondence concerning your application will be sent through email or made available on your portal.

I cannot find my application confirmation email. Can I have it resent?

Of course! Please email adm_updates@rpi.edu to request that the email be resent. Also, be sure to check your spam/junk folders, as sometimes the confirmation email gets misdirected. If the email address you provided is a school-based email, our emails are likely being blocked, so you should reach out to us at adm_updates@rpi.edu to provide a new email address for your account.

Where can I find my Rensselaer ID Number (RIN)?

Your RIN is a unique 9-digit number that begins with “66”. It may be found in both the subject line and body of your application confirmation email, and also near the top of your application status portal page. You should include this number whenever you contact our office concerning your application.

When will I be notified of my admissions decision?

We do not have rolling admissions for first-year fall applicants at RPI, so we release decision notifications for each applicant pool on a certain date (see below). Notifications are made through your application status portal. Be sure to ensure you have access to your portal well before the notification date!

Admission Round Fall 2022 Notification Date
Early Decision I 12/11
Early Action 1/29
Early Decision II 1/15
Regular Decision 3/12
B.S./M.D. Program Early April
Do all of my supplemental materials need to be submitted by the application deadline?

No – the application deadline is just for the application itself. It is okay for your supplemental materials to come in over the days/weeks following the application deadline. You should aim to have your application complete (all transcripts, recommendation letter(s), test scores if applicable) within two weeks following the deadline, if possible.

How do I submit documents to complete my application?

Most application materials need to be official, which means they need to be submitted by your school/counselor. Official documents include high school transcripts and recommendation letters.

Students may submit the following documents themselves, using their application portal: optional resume; first quarter/trimester grades (Early Decision and Early Action applicants); International Student Financial Statement/supporting documentation.

Depending on which application you submitted, there are several different ways documents may be submitted:

  • Common App: Documents may be submitted electronically through the Common App/Naviance system.
  • Coalition Application: Documents may be submitted electronically through the Coalition Application system.
  • Candidate’s Choice Application: Documents may be submitted electronically through SendEDU. As long as you provided your counselor’s email address on the application, they will receive information directly on how to submit your documents through SendEDU.

If you use the Candidate’s Choice Application, in order for us to receive documents your school sends through Naviance, you must indicate inside of Naviance that you are NOT using the Common App to apply to RPI. Once you do that, your counselor should be able to choose to send your supporting documents to us electronically through Parchment. Be sure to monitor your application portal to ensure that we receive all of your supporting documents.

We also allow counselors to create a free Slate.org account, which allows them to submit documents securely and directly to your file (no matter which application you used). Documents may also be submitted on your behalf through email at adm_updates@rpi.edu.

I applied using the Candidate's Choice Application. Can my school send my documents through Naviance/Common App?

If you use the Candidate’s Choice Application, in order for us to receive documents your school sends through Naviance, you must indicate inside of Naviance that you are NOT using the Common App to apply to RPI. Once you do that, your counselor should be able to choose to send your supporting documents to us electronically through Parchment. Be sure to monitor your application portal to ensure that we receive all of your supporting documents.

I submitted my Early Decision Agreement through the Common App, but it is not showing as received in my application portal.

Even though you have completed the Early Decision agreement form, the form may be awaiting receipt of a parent/guardian and/or guidance counselor signature. We do not receive the form from the Common App system until all signatures are provided.

Do you need my first quarter/mid-year grades?

To make a decision on your file, we do need to see at least one set of grades from your senior year. For Early Decision, Early Decision II, and Early Action applicants, we will want to see your first quarter/trimester grades.

For Regular Decision applicants, we will need to see a mid-year report/transcript sent from your school. We understand that all schools operate on different schedules, so please be sure to have your mid-year transcript sent to us as soon as it is available, or by mid-late February at the very latest.

Do I need to send my official AP/IB scores to you?

We do not require official AP scores to be submitted as a part of the application process. We will see any scores you self-report on your application; however, we will evaluate those in conjunction with the grade you received in the actual course itself. 

If you are admitted and enroll, your official scores will need to be sent to our Registrar’s Office in order for you to receive any credit for the exams.

I have taken some college courses. Do you need those official transcripts?

If the courses and grades appear on your official high school transcript, you do not need to submit anything further as a part of the application process. If the courses do not appear on your high school transcript, then we will need to have the transcripts as a part of your file.

If you are admitted and enroll, your official transcript(s) will need to be sent to our Registrar’s Office in order for you to receive any credit for the courses.

If I am applying using my SAT/ACT scores, do you need my official scores sent now?

No - you may self-report your SAT/ACT scores on the application or by using the form on your application status portal. If you are accepted and enroll at Rensselaer, we will need official scores sent for all scores that you self-reported during the application process.

While I am waiting for my decision, how can I learn more about RPI?

We are so glad you asked! We offer a variety of webinars, virtual tours, and other special virtual events - also don’t forget to follow us on Instagram (@RPIAdmissions) for faculty, staff, and student takeovers.

If you have a general question about RPI, please contact admissions@rpi.edu.

To ask our students a question, email ADMambassadors@rpi.edu.

Accordion

Changes to Your Application

My course schedule has changed since I submitted my application.

You should report any changes to the information you submitted on your application to us so it may be added to your file. Any updates/changes may be emailed to adm_updates@rpi.edu.

I already submitted my application, but now I’d like to change my major.

Please complete the "Change in Major Form" found on your application portal. The link may be found on the far right-hand side of your portal page, under “Helpful Links”. Our operations staff will be in touch through email once the change is confirmed.

Please note that while many of our students do pursue minors and/or dual degrees, students may begin their time at RPI with only one major. If you are accepted and choose to enroll at Rensselaer, you should speak with your adviser about adding a dual degree or minor after your first semester is complete.

How can I change how I applied (Early Decision to Regular Decision, etc.)?

If you would like to change the round (Early Decision, Early Decision II, Early Action, Regular Decision) you applied to, please use the form found on your application portal. The link may be found on the far right-hand side of your portal page, under “Helpful Links”. Please note that depending on when you make your request, a change may not always be possible.

I submitted my application, but now I’d like to withdraw my application.

We are sorry to see you go! Please use the form found on your application portal to formally withdraw your application. The link may be found on the far right-hand side of your portal page, under “Helpful Links”. Or, you may email us at adm_updates@rpi.edu - be sure to include your full name and Rensselaer ID number (RIN).

I would like the change my test-optional status.

On the application, you indicated whether or not you'd like us to consider your ACT/SAT scores as a part of your application file. If you'd like to change your answer to this question, please email adm_updates@rpi.edu.

Please note that depending on when you make your request, a change may not always be possible.

Test-Optional FAQs

Accordion

International Applicants

How can I request an English Proficiency Waiver?

Please complete the English Proficiency Waiver form found on your application portal, and we will review your request. The link may be found on the far right-hand side of your portal page, under “Helpful Links”. Email requests will not be accepted.

Can I wait to submit my ISFS and supporting documents after I am accepted?

No - we require the ISFS and supporting documentation to be submitted in order to complete your application for review. We will not review your applciation until all required documents have been submitted.

I submitted my financial documents, but I’m still seeing “International Student Financial Statement Sufficient” has a red “X” on my portal. What does this mean?

When you submit your financial documents, our staff reviews them to ensure they meet our requirements (both the completed ISFS form itself, and supporting financial documents showing two years’ worth of liquid funding).

When we receive your documents, we mark them as “received”, and once they are reviewed and found to be sufficient, they will be marked as “sufficient”.

Please allow 5 days for our staff to review your documents once they are submitted. Once they are reviewed, your application portal will be updated appropriately.

I am currently in the U.S. on a temporary, nonimmigrant visa (E, H, L, or O visa). Do I still have to submit the International Student Financial Statement (ISFS)?

If you are currently in the U.S. on a valid, temporary, nonimmigrant visa and do not intend to apply for an F-1 student visa, you do not have to submit the ISFS. Please email adm_updates@rpi.edu to confirm your intentions and request the ISFS waiver.

If your circumstances or your intentions change, please notify the Office of Admissions immediately. The ISFS is required if you intend to apply for an F-1 student visa.

I am currently in the U.S. as an asylee or refugee. Do I need to submit the International Student Financial Statement (ISFS)?

If you have an Arrival Departure Record (I-94) from the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) with one of the following designations: “asylum granted” or “refugee”, please send a copy, as an attachment, to adm_updates@rpi.edu.

If you do not have an I-94 with either of those designations, you may submit other documentation that demonstrates that you have applied for asylum. Please send a copy of your documentation, as an attachment, to adm_updates@rpi.edu. We will review your documentation and either waive the ISFS requirement or be in touch to request additional information.   

Accordion

Financial Aid

I indicated on my application that I am interested (or not interested) in Financial Aid; however, I need to change that response.

No problem! Email adm_updates@rpi.edu and let us know you want to change your response. Be sure to include your full name, date of birth, and Rensselaer ID number (RIN) if possible.

Please note: Your response to this question on the application is purely for our information, so we know whether we should expect to receive your financial aid forms, and to alert you if we have not received them. If you answered “no”, but are eligible for aid and file the required forms, you will be considered for need-based aid. 

I submitted my financial aid forms, but they are not showing as received on my application portal.

As Rensselaer is listed on your application(s), you can be confident we will receive your information. If you have specific questions about the forms or financial aid, please reach out to their office directly at finaid@rpi.edu.

Do I have to submit BOTH the CSS Profile and FAFSA?

If you would like to be considered for a need-based financial aid award, you will need to submit BOTH the CSS Profile and FAFSA by the appropriate deadline. Please note that we will continue to accept these online documents after the specified deadline, but it is best to submit as soon as possible. The FAFSA automatically considers eligibility for federal aid, including grants, loans and College Work Study. Our college code for the CSS Profile is 2757 and our FAFSA code for our Troy campus is 002803.

I am not interested in need-based aid. Do I need to file the FAFSA and CSS Profile?

If you are not interested in being reviewed for need-based aid, you do NOT need to file the FAFSA and/or CSS Profile. If you are a U.S. Citizen/Permanent Resident, you will automatically be considered for merit-based aid.

Please note that the items will still remain on your Financial Aid checklist.

Accordion

Deferred and Wait Listed Students

I applied Early Decision/Early Decision II and was deferred. What does that mean?

Sometimes, we feel that we may need more information about you to make a final decision on your file. This usually means we want to see a set of grades from your senior year (first quarter/trimester), or to see your mid-year grades. In these cases, the Committee will reconsider your credentials and any new information sent with the Regular Decision applicant pool, and you will be notified of your final decision on the date of Regular Decision notification. Be certain that we receive a mid-year school report and any other information that you would want us to consider during this second review.

If you are a U.S. Citizen/Permanent Resident, and you plan to apply for need-based aid from Rensselaer, please also be sure that you have filed both the CSS Profile and the FAFSA.

I applied Early Action and was deferred to Regular Decision. What are my next steps?

The Early Action applicant pool is typically very strong; we receive thousands of qualified applicants for a limited number of spots. There are some students who we would like to reconsider their application with our Regular Decision applicant pool.

The Committee will reconsider your credentials and any new information sent with the Regular Decision applicant pool, and you will be notified of your decision on the date of Regular Decision notification. Be certain that we receive a mid-year school report and any other information that you would want us to consider during this second review.

If you are a U.S. Citizen/Permanent Resident, and you plan to apply for need-based aid from Rensselaer, please also be sure that you have filed both the CSS Profile and the FAFSA.

I was offered a spot on the waitlist. Now what?

Every year, we have many more qualified applicants than we have room to admit. So, we offer some students an opportunity to join our wait list. Each year is different - some years we utilize the wait list, and if we do, how many we admit from it varies. As deposits come in throughout the spring, we start to have a better idea of which programs we may need to fill from the wait list.

We do not rank our waitlist. There are a number of factors that contribute to a student being called from the waitlist, including the student’s desired major and interest level in enrolling at Rensselaer. We may begin wait list activity in April, but the process may continue into May or June as well. So, you still want to make sure that you pursue other options as well.

We try to take interest level into account when we consider our wait list candidates. If you have not already, please make sure that you fill out the online form through your application portal that indicates you would like to remain on the waitlist. Choosing to stay on the waitlist is not binding. Also, please feel free to reach out to your regional counselor to reiterate your interest.

If there is anything else that you would like to add to your file, such as testing results we did not have the first time around, or another marking period of grades, please feel free to send them to adm_updates@rpi.edu.

If you are offered a spot from the waitlist, we will reach out to you directly.

You may elect to remove your name from consideration at any time. As soon as we feel confident that further openings are unlikely to occur, we will notify all remaining candidates by email.