Frequently Asked Questions

AARO (Academic Advising, Registration, and Orientation) is the first part of the orientation process designed to assist you in making a comfortable transition to University life at SMU. It is a two-day program for First-Year students who will be enrolling in the Fall at SMU.  Sessions are designed to offer information to assist you in your transition to Southern Methodist University.  Programs provide academic requirements and expectations, campus resources, involvement opportunities and the chance to meet current students.  During your AARO session, you will also meet one-on-one with an academic advisor and register for fall classes.

You cannot register for orientation until your admission deposit is paid, and your final transcript from previous colleges and universities has been received and processed by the Division of Enrollment Services.  This process takes a minimum of two weeks.

Please do not make travel arrangements until you have registered for orientation and received a confirmation email for your AARO session.  Registration for AARO will be available in March for students who have paid their deposit.

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Students may earn credit in advance of attending SMU through AP exams, IB higher level exams and dual credit programs. This advanced credit can help you progress through your degree plan more quickly. Complete policies can be found in the Undergraduate Catalog available at

For admission to a degree program in Lyle Engineering, a student must:

  • have completed 24 credit hours
  • must attain a 2.0 or higher cumulative GPA
  • must attain 2.5 or higher GPA in the following courses:
  • ENGL 1301 or equivalent
  • ENGL 1302 or equivalent
  • MATH 1337
  • MATH 1338
  • And a minimum of two courses as follows for each Lyle major

About 2,000 students call the halls "home." However, the residence halls are more than a convenient place to sleep! SMU is committed to providing an exceptional residential experience of living and learning together. Many factors combine to form this experience, including programs that support student learning and communities that support residents and help them feel more connected to the University. For most students, residence halls are an introduction to group living. This can be a wonderful and rewarding experience that residents value for the rest of their lives.

Priority for residence hall assignments is made on a first-come, first-served basis. Although housing is guaranteed for first-year students, you must return your signed contract, completed housing application, and $550 nonrefundable deposit by May 2 for priority consideration.

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Studying abroad can be one of your most meaningful learning adventures while a student at Southern Methodist University. You earn academic credit while attending a foreign university and living with host families, in international dorms or with other U.S. students also experiencing a new culture. Many say studying abroad is one of the most transformative times of their lives.

It is important that you choose the right study abroad program for you. Different students have different academic needs and personal goals. Selecting the appropriate program from the more that 130 approved SMU programs is essential for a successful study abroad experience.

SMU offers academic year, semester, summer and winter programs in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, Europe, Asia and the South Pacific. The programs offer a wide range of academic subjects and teaching styles. In fact, some SMU courses taught on campus have study abroad experiences embedded into them, as components of the semester course.

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Our 4+1 Accelerated master’s program allows you to warn both your engineering bachelor’s degree and master’s degrees in just five years. We have created a graduate-level scholarship for students in our 4+1 program that can be worth up to 75% of your fifth-year tuition. The ability to earn a graduate degree in five years, instead of six, is a tremendous benefit, especially when the fifth year of tuition could be of no cost to you.

Depending on your GPA and volunteer and leadership contributions to the Lyle School, up to 75% of the tuition of your 7 graduate level 4+1 courses could be covered.

  • 3.750-3.899 SMU GPA could earn a scholarship of 50% tuition
  • 3.900-4.000 SMU GPA could earn a scholarship of 75% tuition