Aerial photo of the Montclair State campus

Resources for Counselors

Information for High School Counselors

Montclair Bound Counselor Newsletter Fall 2023

Download and review our Fall 2023 Montclair Bound Counselor Newsletter! This newsletter includes a letter from the Director of Undergraduate Admissions, information on our Counselor Workshop and Webinars, Student Stories, Important Dates and Deadlines, and more.

Resource Flyers for Counselors

We’ve created a suite of downloadable flyers for you to have on hand should any of your students need additional information on How to Apply, Combined Degree Programs and more! Check back frequently for more flyers.

Office of Student Belonging

The mission of the Office of Student Belonging is to provide a variety of cohort-based experiences that promote a strong connection to the university, for students who are freshmen, transfers, international, first-generation and military-affiliated. By building interdepartmental partnerships, we will foster a strong sense of belonging for students entering the university through holistic and intentional experiences, increasing opportunities for student success and retention.

Learn More

Counselor Workshops

The Office of Undergraduate Admissions invites you to our Counselor Workshop. The workshop will feature guest speakers, a campus update, and an overview of the college admissions process.

All attendees will earn Professional Development hours. Additionally, you will be able to network with Admissions staff, other departments on campus, and school counselors from the tri-state area. This year, we have in-person and virtual options.

Learn More

Presentations: Learn More About Montclair
Getting to know Montclair State University

We know students walk onto our campus and feel its wow factor. Over and over, we hear that students visited Montclair and instantly felt at home. So much of that feeling, though, is owed to the incredible sense of community and the pride current students, faculty, and staff feel about being Red Hawks. To help students get a sense of what it’s like to join Red Hawk Country and be an important part of our community, we’ve curated a number of in-person and virtual experiences:

Students can:

  • Create a Custom Viewbook and explore only the academic programs, career opportunities and clubs that they’re interested. This personalized viewbook will help them envision exactly what their life would be like in Red Hawk Country.
  • Join us for a walking Campus Tour!
  • Register for Open House to hear from our Deans and current students, learn more about our academic programs and experience a virtual campus tour.
  • Take a virtual tour, explore our campus, and learn more about our community through our Video Viewbook and Interactive Campus Map
  • Get help navigating the admissions process, learn more about applying as a transfer student, or attend an information session for prospective freshmen by signing up for a webinar.
  • Schedule a telecounseling session for one-on-one support from our admissions counselors.

Counselors – would you like to set up a virtual visit and information session for your students with one of our Admissions Counselors? 

We’re ready to “meet” your students and help them launch their college search process with a live information session with one of our Admissions Counselors. Vanessa Devericks, Lead Admissions Counselor for Recruitment Coordination, will help you set up your session. Reach out to her today at

Answers to Questions for Current and Future Applicants

How will pass/fail grading impact admissions decisions—now and in the future?

Montclair State University has a long history of conducting a holistic review of all applicants. Unlike many large institutions, every single application at Montclair is thoroughly reviewed by an admissions counselor. Since becoming the first public four-year institution in New Jersey to adopt an SAT/ACT optional admissions policy in 2014, our focus has been even more keenly targeted on student performance in the classroom. The transcript tells that story, and we interpret it by considering factors like trends in performance year-over-year, the rigor of courses students are taking, and their performance in courses (like Algebra II, English, and other writing-intensive courses) that are indicators of success.

With many schools—Montclair included—adopting expanded pass/fail grading policies, we do not expect any significant change to the way in which we review applications will be necessary. We will still conduct a holistic review, considering all factors– including the uniqueness of this moment in our history and its impact on students– and we will always err on the side of giving students the benefit of the doubt.  As school counselors, you help us make those decisions by providing us additional backstory in your letters of recommendation. These are particularly helpful when students have complicated stories to tell.

How will the cancelled SAT dates impact admissions decisions?

Montclair has a test-optional admissions policy, so students applying to the University will be at no disadvantage during the application process if they missed the opportunity to sit for the SAT in 2020.

Is Montclair State University changing its policy on Advanced Placement (AP) credit given the new testing model?

We recognize that these are extraordinary times, so we will not make any changes to our existing policies related to accepting AP scores for college-level credit. 

Answers to Questions for Accepted Students

How do students create their course schedules for the fall semester?

All incoming freshmen complete the First-Year Questionnaire. This survey helps advisors build first-year students’ fall and spring schedules in advance of orientation. After the schedule is built, the academic advisor will invite the student to a virtual welcome meeting to talk about what to expect before the fall semester begins.  Students will connect with their academic advisor during various Orientation activities this summer.  At these meetings, they’ll learn more about creating an educational plan and be able to ask any questions about their schedules or next steps.

Direct students to the Accepted Students Checklist for more information on the First-Year Questionnaire.

What about placement testing?

In most cases, your student’s academic advising team will use information from the student’s prior high school or college record to determine placement into courses at Montclair.

Foreign Language Placement Testing
All students at Montclair State University must complete or transfer in 6 credits of world language coursework to meet graduation requirements. If you plan to continue studying a world language you have studied previously, you must complete the Foreign Language Placement Test. Learn more about the test

Math & Chemistry Placement for Students in Majors within the College of Science & Mathematics
Incoming freshmen do not require any placement testing. Your advising team in the College of Science & Mathematics (CSAM) will determine which level of math and/or chemistry in which to place you based on the courses you took in high school and how well you did in them. 

Special considerations: 

– If you have completed or are currently enrolled in a college-level math course or will complete a relevant math AP exam, you must email as soon as possible with the course and grade/score that you expect to or have earned. CSAM majors who have not completed at least Algebra II in high school will not be able to take any CSAM courses and should contact immediately for advising. 

– Students admitted to the Health Careers and/or EOF programs must take the Accuplacer and/or Chemistry Readiness Test (CRT). 

Students can contact the Academic Success Center at 973-655-5425, 973-655-4476 or email for questions about placement into courses.

My students have concerns about paying for college because their families’ financial situations have changed. Who can they talk to?

Each situation is different, so we recommend your students schedule time to speak one-on-one with a Financial Aid Counselor who can best advise on their unique circumstances. Have them schedule a Telecounseling appointment with a Financial Aid Counselor today!

Students have other questions about financial aid, billing or registration. Who can they talk to?

A one-stop resource for any questions about paying for college, navigating our systems or planning for the fall, is Red Hawk Central. Please reach out to them for additional support at or 973-655-7600.