Des Moines Area Community College is dedicated to helping individuals reach their educational and vocational goals. Admission to the College is open to all who apply and can benefit from courses and programs offered by the College. The College does reserve the right to guide the course placement of students on the basis of counseling, examination, preenrollment interviews and past academic achievement. Admission to the College does not guarantee acceptance into all courses or programs offered, and enrollment in some programs and courses depends on basic skill levels and/or available space.
DMACC operates under a continuous admissions process, so acceptance of applicants is granted when admissions procedures and requirements have been completed. Therefore, applicants will find it to their advantage to apply as soon as they have decided to seek admission to a program. After meeting program entrance requirements, those students who apply to a program already at enrollment capacity will be placed on standby status until an enrollment opportunity occurs.
Each program establishes the minimum entrance requirements for applicants. Proficiency in reading, writing and/or mathematics may be required for enrollment in selected courses within a program in addition to the program admission requirements.
Applying for Admission
Current and Returning Students: If you have submitted an admission application in the past three years, you do not need to reapply for admission. Contact the DMACC Admissions Office about your status.
- Complete an admission application and submit it online or at the DMACC campus nearest you. You may request a form by calling any DMACC campus. To apply online, visit the DMACC website at www.dmacc.edu. There is no fee for applying for admission to DMACC.
- Submit ACT or COMPASS exam results to DMACC (full-time or ESL only). Assessment guidelines can be found under the heading, Guidelines for Required Assessment.
- If you are not a resident of Iowa, provide proof of secondary education completion by submitting official high school or HiSET transcripts.
- If you have attended another college or university, submit official transcripts to meet any additional admission or program requirements.
- Complete any program prerequisites for your specific program.
Admission procedures and entry requirements vary by program. Check our website for specific program details, www.dmacc.edu/programs. Please note: Some programs accept a limited number of students. If you have met all of the program requirements and the program is full, you will be placed on a waiting list until a seat becomes available.
Once your application is received, it will be processed as soon as possible. You should receive communication from us within five working days informing you of your admission status.
Guidelines for Required Assessment
Assessment scores used for admission purposes must be five (5) years old or less from the test date.
DMACC requires a skills assessment of all new, full-time students. Full-time is defined as 12 credit hours or more during Fall and Spring semesters and 8 credit hours or more during the Summer term. This assessment provides information about students’ academic skills in reading, writing and mathematics.
Assessment information is used to assist with course selection and schedule planning.
The assessment requirement may be met by completing any one of the following options:
- Complete COMPASS (reading and writing) assessment and ALEKS math assessment. The COMPASS and ALEKS assessments are given to students who do not qualify under options 2 or 3.
- Submit ACT Scores.
- Provide evidence of successful college experience. An official college transcript from each prior college attended must be mailed to the Admissions Office. The following criteria are used to grant assessment waivers:
- Writing-grade of C or higher in a college-level writing course.
- Reading-grade of C or higher in a college-level reading-intensive course such as psychology, sociology, economics, etc., and/or vocational technical coursework requiring comparable reading skills.
- Math-grade of C or higher in a college level mathematics course.
- If college experience is older than five years, students are strongly encouraged to take the COMPASS test.
Assessment is especially important in the following instances:
- A mathematics assessment before enrolling in a math class or a course with a math prerequisite.
- A writing assessment before enrolling in any course that has writing expectations or requirements.
A reading assessment before enrolling in a course with substantial reading assignments.
COMPASS testing is provided on all DMACC campuses. (ALEKS math assessment can be taken on the Web Information System) Call one of the numbers below to make a testing appointment at the campus of your choice:
- Ames Hunziker Center: 515:663-6700 or 1-800-362-2127, ext. 6700
- Ankeny: 515-964-6595 or 1-800-362-2127, ext. 6595
- Boone: 515-432-5096 or 1-800-362-2127, ext. 5096
- Carroll: 712-792-1755 or 1-800-622-3334
- Newton: 641-791-3622 or 1-800-362-2127, ext. 3622
- Southridge Center: 515-287-8720 or 1-800-362-2127, ext. 8720
- Urban: 515-248-7218 or 1-800-362-2127, ext. 7218
- West: 515-633-2408 or 1-800-362-2127, ext. 2408
All students who wish to enroll in a mathematics course for the first time will be required to complete a placement exam offered by the College to determine which course(s) they may take and to help them succeed in their math course(s). Students must obtain a satisfactory score on the placement exam, ALEKS, before enrollment in a math course. Transfer students and current DMACC students including PSEO and Career Advantage students, who have earned a C- or higher in a prerequisite math course within 18-months will be exempt. Students who only need MAT 772 for their program of study are also exempt.
For more information consult: www.dmacc.edu/mathplacement.
ESL Test in COMPASS
DMACC offers English as a Second Language ESL Test in COMPASS for students whose first language is not English. All full-time and part-time students whose first language is not English are required to take and pass the ESL Test in COMPASS as a requirement for admission. This requirement may be waived in certain circumstances based on TOEFL, ACT or IELTS scores or previous college coursework. Placement in ESL courses, college preparatory courses or college-level courses is based on minimum scores. Please contact the DMACC Testing Center at the campus nearest you for more information.
Students With Disabilities
Students taking the COMPASS test who are in need of an accommodation due to a disability may apply and provide documentation to the Disability Services Coordinator at 515-964-6850. This request must be submitted prior to the test, and the student should make accommodation arrangements with both the Testing Center and the Disability Services Coordinator in advance of the test date. Accommodations are generally granted for access to assistive technology for the COMPASS test.
Admission of High School Students
DMACC offers the opportunity for high school students to enroll in credit courses. Juniors and Seniors: Complete steps 1 and 2 below if enrolling as a part-time student. Complete steps 1, 2 and 3 if enrolling as a full-time student. Freshmen and Sophomores and Home-Schooled Students: Complete steps 1, 2, 3 and 4. Freshmen and sophomores are limited to no more than two credit courses each semester and must remain part-time students.
- Submit a completed Application for Admission.
- Submit a completed DMACC High School Permission Form.
- Complete COMPASS (reading and writing) assessment and ALEKS math assessment or submit ACT scores. Course placement is based on the COMPASS/ALEKS or ACT scores.
- Meet with a DMACC advisor or counselor prior to registration.
This procedure does not apply to high school age students enrolling under the Postsecondary Enrollment Options Act, Career Advantage or other special contractual agreements, except to the extent that full-time students must meet the Guidelines for Required Assessment.
Admission of Pre-High School Students
In limited circumstances, DMACC may allow pre-high school students to enroll in credit courses. Completion of all the steps listed below is necessary before the College will make a decision about admitting and enrolling any person who is not at least a freshman in high school:
- Submit a completed application for admission.
- Submit written approval from a parent/guardian and from the school counselor or principal on the DMACC High School Permission Form.
- Complete COMPASS (reading and writing) assessment and ALEKS math assessment or submit ACT scores. Students not meeting minimum scores for placement in college-level courses will not be allowed to enroll. Course placement based on test scores will be mandatory.
- Student must provide documentation that they have been identified as talented and gifted.
- Any specific course or program prerequisite must be met.
- Students are limited to no more than two credit courses per semester.
- Student must meet, without the parent being present, with the appropriate instructor, program chair, or dean for an evaluation of readiness for each desired course. A determination that a student is not ready either academically or emotionally will prohibit enrollment in that course.
Admission of Guest Students
Guest Students: Students whose primary enrollment is at another college and are enrolling at DMACC:
- Submit a completed DMACC Application for Admission. Always apply as Liberal Arts, no matter what your major.
- Provide proof of enrollment, such as an acceptance letter or valid student ID from primary school of attendance.
- Must remain part-time during the Fall and Spring semesters, but can be full time during the Summer.
Note: Guest students are not eligible for financial aid.
Admission of International Students
International students are persons in the United States who have a nonimmigrant visa, including an F-1 visa. Specific requirements must be met before being admitted to Des Moines Area Community College.
No admission decision will be made until the International Student Office receives all required documents.
Deadlines for New International Students
All Applications for Admission and supporting documents must be received NO LATER THAN 30 days prior to the first day of the semester.
||July 19, 2015
||Dec. 20, 2015
If the paperwork is received after the deadline, DMACC will process the application for the next semester.
Example: For students who apply to attend school for the Fall semester and the documentation arrives after July 19, 2015, DMACC will process the application for the Spring semester.
Deadlines for International Transfer Students
||Aug. 2, 2015
||Dec. 20, 2015
International Student Applicants
New Full-Time International Student Applicants
New full-time international students need to obtain Certificate of Eligibility Form I-20 to receive a student visa through the U.S. Consul or Embassy in their country. The I-20 indicates that all admission requirements have been met to enter the College. This document is issued through SEVIS, the Student Exchange Visitor Information System. The U.S. Consulates make the final decision regarding whether students will be allowed to enter the United States to study.
All international students must report to DMACC by the date stated in the I-20 forms. Late-arriving students will not be allowed to register for class.
International students requesting admission and issuance of an I-20 must provide:
- A completed and signed DMACC International Application for Admission. Do not apply online.
- A completed International Student Information Form.
- A Financial Resource Statement verifying the ability of the student or the student’s sponsor to meet all educational and living expenses for one year while attending DMACC. This must be signed and sealed by a notary public and accompanied by a letter or bank statement dated within six months of the application. Financial support of approximately $18,034 (USD) is needed per year. (In addition, a refundable deposit of $4,000 (USD) is required. Refer to #7 for more deposit details.) Students who are issued an F-1 visa to study in the United States are not permitted to work off-campus unless they receive authorization from the government. There are very few opportunities to work on campus.
- A non-refundable payment of $100 (USD) made payable to DMACC. This may be sent in the form of a bank draft or an international postal money order. Payment must be made before an I-20 will be issued.
An official transcript that provides evidence of graduation from a secondary school and transcripts from all postsecondary institutions attended. Photocopies may be accepted if they are properly notarized as true copies. Transcripts must be translated into English.
Students who wish to transfer credits from a college or university from outside the United States to apply toward degree requirements at Des Moines Area Community College must have transcripts reviewed by a commercial service. The review must be completed at the subject analysis or catalog level. Students are responsible for the additional fees. Contact the International Student Office for further information.
The college issues an I-20 Certificate of Eligibility form after students complete the steps above and qualify for admission.
The following items must be provided upon the student’s arrival at DMACC to complete the admission process:
Official evidence of English proficiency. All full-time and part-time students whose native language is NOT English are required to take and pass the ESL Test in COMPASS as a requirement for admission. This test is available at the assessment centers located on each DMACC campus. This requirement may be waived by providing any of the following:
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score of 173 on the computer test, 500 on the paper test, or 61 on the iBT Internet-based version (45 if speaking not completed) in order to enroll in credit courses. The code for DMACC is #6177.
Official transcripts from an accredited United States college or university showing successful completion (‘C’ or better grade) of a college-level writing course and 6 hours of college-level academic coursework requiring reading.
ACT score of 19 or higher in Reading and Writing. The ACT code for DMACC is 1272.
IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score of 5.0.
A refundable deposit of $4,000 (USD) is required for new or transfer F-1 students and must be paid before course registration. It may not be used to pay educational expenses until the last semester the student is enrolled.
Proof of medical insurance. Students who purchased their own medical insurance must provide proof of insurance within the first 15 days of the semester. If no proof of insurance is provided, insurance will be provided and a fee of approximately $900 per year will be assessed to the student.
Completion of the “Guidelines for Required Assessment” and any additional entry requirements for the program of study.
Transfer International Student Applicants
Students who apply to Des Moines Area Community College as transfers from a college or university within the United States must provide the same items as new students listed as 1-9 above. In addition, transfer students must submit:
A completed DMACC International Student Inquiry Form, completed by the current school’s International Student Advisor.
Copies of passport including the VISA pages, I-94 form and all previously issued I-20 forms.
New International Guest Student Applicants
Students who are enrolled full-time at another college or university within the United States and wish to enroll part-time at DMACC must provide items 1, 6 and 11 from above, plus a copy of their student ID card from the primary school. Students should designate “Liberal Arts” as their major program of study.
All other types of applicants should contact the International Student Office.
Requirements for proof of Iowa residency are established for community colleges by the Iowa Department of Education. Please note that a student cannot be a resident of two states at the same time. If your home is in another state and you are living in Iowa for the purpose of attending school, you are a resident of your home state and not a resident of Iowa.
You will be considered a resident of Iowa for DMACC tuition and fee purposes if you are:
- Permanently domiciled in Iowa (not living in Iowa primarily for educational purposes); and
- Have resided here for a period of not less than 90 days prior to the first day of the semester in which you will be attending; and
- You provide supporting documentation issued/dated on or before the appropriate date on the timeline below to prove your Iowa residency. (See list of acceptable documents under Application Process below.)
Iowa has established a public-private, non-profit organization called Iowa Sister States to promote cultural and economic partnerships. DMACC recognizes this formal relationship by allowing individuals from the following “states” to be eligible for resident tuition fees:
- Hebei Province, China
- Kosovo (nation)
- Shijiazhuang, China
- Saint Etienne, France
- Provincia di Catanzaro, Italy
- Veneto Region, Italy
- Kōfu, Japan
- Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan
- Terengganu, Malaysia
- Naucalpan, Mexico
- Yucatan, Mexico
- Stavropol Krai, Russia
- Taiwan (the entire country/state)
- Cherkasy Oblast, Ukraine
Proof must be given showing that the student is actually from the Sister State.
If you are classified as an out-of-state student, it is your responsibility to submit the appropriate documents needed to prove Iowa residency. In-state residency status is not automatically changed after a certain period of time.
Residency Application Timelines
To meet the 90-day requirement, you must provide documentation proving that you began residing in Iowa on or before the following dates:
||On or before May 22, 2015
||On or before October 13, 2015
||On or before February 24, 2016
If you seek to be reclassified after the term begins, your new classification will be effective beginning with your next term of enrollment. Residency status cannot be reclassified once the term begins.
To apply for reclassification from nonresident to resident status, follow these steps:
- Complete the DMACC Request for Residency Status form.
- Submit supporting, dated documentation demonstrating residency in Iowa to any DMACC campus prior to the first day of the semester for which you are registering. To show that your purpose for living in Iowa is for more than attending school and to show that you have been a resident of Iowa for 90 days or more, you must provide one of the items listed in A through E below as evidence. The second document you provide may be from A through G.
- Iowa driver’s license
- Iowa vehicle registration form
- Iowa state income tax return, signed and dated
- Iowa voter registration card
- Proof of Iowa Homestead credit on property taxes
- Written and notarized documentation from an employer that you have been employed in Iowa for a minimum of 90 days prior to the start of the semester
- Other indicators of Iowa residency, such as apartment lease dated and signed by both you and the manager, utility bills, bank statements, etc., dated and showing your Iowa address.
If you are a lawful permanent resident (LPR) of the United States or an approved refugee, you may apply for residency status. International students who are in the United States on any type of student visa (e.g., an F-1 or F-2 visa) cannot establish in-state residency while studying in this country.
For more information, see our website at www.dmacc.edu/admissions/residency.asp or contact the Registrar’s office at 515-964-6320.
In general, students who are in good standing and have not enrolled for one or more consecutive semesters do not need to apply for readmission to the College. Prior to registration, students must verify the accuracy of their existing information. It is recommended that students visit with a counselor/advisor to review their academic records.
Students accepted to a limited enrollment or selective admission program and who did not start when planned or withdrew for one or more semesters must contact the department chairperson to request enrollment as a “Restart” student.
Students who have been suspended due to failure to meet the College’s academic standards must meet the requirement for readmission as found in the Academic Standards section of the catalog before reenrolling.
Students who have been suspended for a disciplinary reason may not reenroll until they have met all requirements imposed at the time of suspension.
Transferring Credit to DMACC
Evaluation of Previous Training and Education
Students must request that a transcript bearing the official seal and signature of the official in charge of the records be sent directly to the DMACC Admissions Office by each college or university previously attended. Transcripts that have been in the student’s possession will not be considered official documents. Transcripts must be sent from each previously attended institution; all previous records may be summarized on one transcript. DMACC will accept credit from an institution only when submitted by the institution where the credit was earned.
Students that have earned credit from an institution whose transcript is in a language other than English must have the transcript evaluated and translated by an approved credential evaluation service. Contact the DMACC Credentials staff for more information.
A maximum of 43 semester credit hours of transfer credit is applicable toward associate degree requirements. The total grade point average of credits transferred to DMACC must equal 2.0 or higher. Some programs may require a minimum grade of “C” in each course that fulfills a degree requirement. Since the student’s DMACC grade point average is calculated from coursework taken at DMACC only, grades earned at other colleges or universities will not be used in the computation of the student’s GPA at DMACC.
Upon completion of the transfer credit evaluation, students can access their DMACC degree audit using the web information system to view transfer award.
The acceptance and use of transfer credit is subject to limitations in accordance with the educational procedures of the College.
Credit for Educational Experience in the Armed Forces
Credit earned through educational experiences in the armed forces can be validated and accepted by the College. Credit is accepted based on statewide policies at Iowa colleges and universities and based on its applicability toward meeting the requirements in the student’s program of study. An American Council on Education (ACE) publication, “Guide to the Evaluations of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services,” is generally used in making these determinations.
Credit is awarded only for significant learning experiences as recommended by the ACE guide. No credit will be awarded based on the Military Occupational Specialties (MOS) evaluation program.
Credit may be awarded for coursework completed via correspondence, classroom study and/or examination through the United States Armed Forces Institute. Credit may also be granted on the basis of scores earned on the Subject Standardized Test of the Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Educational Support (DANTES). Copies of transcripts showing such work will be evaluated by the Credentials Office.
Prospective students are invited to visit any or all of the DMACC campuses during “Discover DMACC Day.” Individual tours may be arranged by calling 1-800-362-2127 and selecting the campus of your choice, clicking the “Visit DMACC” link at www.dmacc.edu or by calling the individual campus at: