Admission Information

Freshman Academic Requirements

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Admission to USF is more competitive than ever, but the process of applying is not difficult. We consider each applicant individually, taking into account grades, rigor of curriculum and standardized test scores. Here’s the profile of our most recently admitted class:

ADMITTED STUDENT PROFILE (MIDDLE 50%)

Summer 2022

  • GPA: 3.62-4.12 
  • SAT: 1100-1190  
  • ACT: 22-25  

Fall 2022

  • GPA: 4.00-4.50  
  • SAT: 1240-1390  
  • ACT: 27-31  

Think you have what it takes? Discover what’s required for admission consideration.

GPA Requirements

Competition for space in the freshman class is rigorous. For determining admissibility to USF, we will recalculate your high school GPA based on grades earned in high school only in core academic subject areas, as well as specified AP and IB fine and performing arts courses. USF will add the quality points outlined below for approved AP, IB, AICE, honors and dual enrollment courses provided you earn a "C" or better.

Course Type

Quality Point

Advanced Placement

1.0

International Baccalaureate

1.0

Dual Enrollment

1.0

AICE

1.0

Honors

0.5

Taking weighted courses can have a positive impact on your recalculated GPA as long as you are reasonably successful in these advanced-level courses.

Test Requirements

USF requires freshman applicants to submit official results of at least one college entrance exam (SAT or ACT). USF does not currently require or consider the optional essay section of the SAT or the ACT for the admission or scholarship review processes. Likewise, SAT subject tests are not considered for admission or placement. USF's code for SAT is 5828 and for ACT is 0761.

In Fall 2022, mid-range SAT and ACT scores for admitted freshmen were: 

  • SAT: 1240-1390  
  • ACT: 27-31  

In Summer 2022, mid-range SAT and ACT scores for admitted freshmen were:

  • SAT: 1100-1190  
  • ACT: 22-25  

Superscoring

USF considers your highest submitted section scores across all SAT and ACT test dates. Final admission decisions will be made using only your highest cumulative scores. Each time you submit test scores to USF, we will update your record with any new high scores. We strongly encourage you to submit your scores each time you take the SAT or ACT. Sending your scores each time you take the SAT or ACT can benefit you by allowing us to consider you for all available enrollment-related opportunities.

Testing Recommendations

Because the SAT and ACT measure college readiness through different means and formats, we strongly encourage you to take each exam once during the spring of your junior year in high school. You are likely to prefer (and even to perform better) on one test over the other, which would allow you to focus on that test during the fall of your senior year. Except in rare cases, you should not take either test more than three times, as significant improvements on performance are unlikely at that point. 

Course Requirements

You must complete a minimum of 18 approved units of high school work in the five core subject areas in addition to three approved academic electives. If you graduated from high school in 2011 or thereafter, you must have completed four units of math—including one course above and beyond Algebra II.

Although you may take one fewer academic elective unit, applicants who are the most competitive for admission to USF typically complete a minimum of 20 academic units, which averages five per year in grades nine through twelve.

Subject Area

Graduated Before 2011

Graduated 2011 or Later

English

4

4

Mathematics

3

4

Natural Science

3

3

Social Science

3

3

Foreign Language

2

2

Electives

3

2

TOTAL UNITS

18

18

Foreign Language Entrance Requirements (FLENT)

Students must have completed two academic units of the same foreign language in high school or two semesters of the same foreign language or American Sign Language (ASL) in college to be considered for admission. If you already have fulfilled this requirement, submit official transcripts showing the foreign language or ASL courses completed. Refer to the following bullets for methods to meet the requirement and possible exemptions. 

Foreign Language Waiver

USF requires that students have completed two units (two years) of instruction in a foreign language to be considered for admission. However, you may document proficiency in a second language to meet this requirement.

In Florida, the course number that is designated to indicate a foreign language waiver is 0791920 and has a course title of "Bright Futures Foreign Language Proficiency Waiver." For a listing of ways to document proficiency in a second language for a foreign language waiver, see the Florida Counseling for Future Education Handbook. In the event you meet waiver requirements, you are encouraged to work with your guidance counselor to document the waiver on your transcript or via letter to the Office of Admissions.

Additional Requirements

In addition to GPA, test scores and course requirements, we consider several other factors when evaluating your application for admission.

STRENGTH OF CURRICULUM

Your high school coursework serves to prepare you for the rigors of college courses, particularly at a research institution like USF. We strongly encourage you to challenge yourself by taking coursework at the highest levels in which you can be successful, including Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), AICE and dual enrollment courses.

In addition, we expect that you will complete additional academic coursework beyond minimum state requirements, particularly in the areas of math, science and foreign language.

GRADE TREND

One of the most overlooked areas of importance in the admissions process is your grade trend, particularly in your junior and senior years. Grade trend refers to how your grades have progressed throughout high school – whether they have gone up, stayed the same or gone down.

Generally, the higher your grades the better, and we prefer to see more As and Bs than Cs (although a few Cs may be acceptable, particularly in the most challenging courses). Ds and Fs are cause for concern.

DUAL ENROLLMENT GPA

Taking dual enrollment courses is a great way to get a head start on meeting college graduation requirements. To be considered for (and maintain) an offer of admission, we require a minimum GPA of 2.50 (unweighted) in dual enrollment courses.

 If you have taken Dual Enrollment, USF will require an official transcript from each college or university prior to starting at USF. We give additional consideration to applicants with a postsecondary GPA of 3.00 or higher, as they have proven themselves capable of being successful in college-level work.

NO ESSAY REQUIREMENT

No essay or personal statement is requested to be evaluated for admission to USF.  Any submission of an essay or personal statement will not be opened or reviewed.

Home School Requirements

Many of USF's best students have completed home education programs. As a home-schooled student, you must meet the same admission criteria as your peers graduating from traditional high schools, including:

  • A Self-Reported Student Academic Record.
  • An official SAT or ACT score.
  • A portfolio or additional documentation may be requested if deemed necessary to complete an appropriate evaluation for admission.
  • Additional factors are also considered for home schooled students, such as strength of curriculum, grade trend, or dual enrollment GPA. Dual enrollment courses must be approved by the State University System to meet unit requirements.

GED Requirements

  • Applicants submitting a GED diploma must have a minimum passing score on each section of the test.
  • Admission to the university is selective. Therefore, having a passing score does not guarantee admission.
  • An official SAT or ACT score.
  • A high school transcript with secondary coursework completed before earning the GED may be requested.
  • Other admission factors may also be considered, if applicable.

 NOTE: Simply meeting minimum GED requirements does not guarantee admission. Many GED recipients are encouraged to earn the Associate in Arts degree at a public Florida community college prior to transferring to USF.

Students With Disabilities

Applicants with disabilities apply for admission under the same guidelines as all applicants. Applicants who are denied admission and would like to request reconsideration based on a documented disability that a student believes may have had an impact on grades, course choice, or standardized admission test scores may appeal the admission decision by submitting an appeal letter to the Office of Admissions with the necessary official documentation to demonstrate that the failure to meet standard admission requirements is directly related to a disability. In that appeal process, applicants may request a substitution of university guidelines. USF can only accept documentation regarding a disability on appeal of an initial denial decision or during the review for accommodation after admission. Prior to that time, USF will return any disability documentation to the applicant.

USF provides a full range of excellent services to qualified students with disabilities. Admitted students may contact the Office of Student Accessibility Services to initiate the process of applying for academic accommodations. 

Learn more on the USF Journey Through Admission or our virtual information session.