3.4.3 Admissions Policies

Comprehensive Standard 3.4.3: Admission Policies

The institution publishes admissions policies that are consistent with its mission.

Compliance Partial Compliance Non-compliance


The University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee (USF Sarasota-Manatee) publishes admissions policies that are consistent with its MIssion Statement: “The University of South Florida Sarasota‐Manatee provides high quality bachelor’s and graduate‐level education and scholarly activity in a personalized learning community that prepares successful leaders and responsible citizens.” The faculty encourage students to embrace academic excellence, freedom of inquiry, diversity and inclusion, and accountability. These attributes are consistent with USF Sarasota-Manatee’s Values. USF Sarasota-Manatee’s Admissions Webpage and Academic Catalog publish Freshman Admission Criteria, Transfer Admission Criteria, International Admission Criteria, and Graduate Admission Criteria.

Admission to USF Sarasota-Manatee is regulated at the state and institutional levels. Florida Board of Governor’s (BOG) Regulation 6.001(1) mandates that “based on minimum standards adopted by the Board of Governors, university boards of trustees . . . establish the criteria, policies, and procedures by regulation for the admission of students.” In addition, the BOG regulates admissions at state universities for first-time-in-college (FTIC) (BOG Regulation 6.002), transfer (BOG Regulation 6.004), and international students (BOG Regulation 6.009). Accordingly, the USF Board of Trustees (BOT) established general admissions policies for undergraduate (USF System Regulation 3.018) and graduate (USF System Regulation 3.008) applicants. These admissions policies provide information regarding required credentials and documents necessary for application review as well as applicant responsibilities.

USF Sarasota-Manatee participates in the Florida 2+2 Articulation Agreement, which establishes specific guidelines for Associate of Art (AA) and Associate of Science (AS) degree applicants in Florida Statute 1007.23. This agreement specifically states that at least one member of the State University System (SUS) must grant AA and AS recipients admission to an upper-division program. In addition, USF Sarasota-Manatee adheres to the Florida Statewide Course Numbering System requirements in Florida Florida Statute 1007.24.

Freshman Students – First Time in College (FTIC)

As outlined in the Academic Catalog – Freshman Admissions and on the Freshman Admissions Webpage, USF Sarasota-Manatee accepts freshmen as First-Time-in-College (FTIC) students based on a variety of factors, including strength of the high school curriculum, a record of academic achievement, and ACT and/or SAT test scores. USF Sarasota-Manatee values special talents in and out of the classroom and recommends the following minimums for admission consideration:

  1. A high school grade-point average (GPA) of a 3.3 or higher. This GPA is a weighted, recalculated GPA based on a student’s academic core coursework in English, Math, Natural Science, Social Science, and Foreign Language.
  2. A 500 on the SAT Critical Reading, Math, and Writing sections
    A 21 on the ACT Reading, Math, and Combined English/Writing sections.

Students must also meet the State University System of Florida (SUS) minimum number of academic units of high school credit (BOG Regulation 6.002).

Applications are valid for one academic year from the original term of application. In addition, a denied student has the right to request an appeal of their admissions decision by review of a faculty committee. It is recommended that these students submit a formal letter of appeal listing any factors or qualifications to be considered in the appeal, as well as new grades and/or test scores as part of the appeal process.

Undergraduate Transfer Students

As published in the Academic Catalog – Transfer and on the Admissions Webpage – Transfer, USF Sarasota-Manatee accepts transfer students who have completed credits from a regionally accredited institution. Transfer applicants must have a cumulative 2.0 grade-point average (GPA) in all college work attempted and be in good academic standing at the last institution attended. The Academic Renewal policy and/or Academic Regulations Committee decisions, as described in the Academic Catalog and on the Academic Advising Webpage, allow reinstatement. Applicants with prior legal and/or conduct situations must submit appropriate supporting documentation and obtain clearance to proceed in the admissions process by the USF System Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, in Tampa. Applicants to limited access programs, such as those within the College of Business and College of Education, may be required to demonstrate achievement of a higher cumulative transfer GPA. For example, the GPA requirement for these limited access programs is a 2.75 Minimum for Business Majors and a 2.5 Minimum for Education Majors.

Former USF System students who left in good academic standing may reapply after being inactive for one academic year. However, readmission to USF Sarasota-Manatee and to the program in which the student was previously enrolled is not guaranteed. Applicants have the opportunity to update their term of entry if they wish to defer their matriculation. Applications are valid for one academic year from the original term of application. In addition, a denied student has the right to request a review by a faculty committee.

Graduate Students

Graduate students must meet the minimum USF Sarasota-Manatee admissions requirements as well as the college/program requirements when applying for admission. The USF Sarasota-Manatee Academic Catalog – Graduate and the Admissions Webpage – Graduate contain graduate admission requirements that vary by program.

The Academic Catalog states that each applicant to a graduate program within the USF System is required to meet the following minimum requirements:

  1. An applicant must have one of the following:
    1. A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and satisfying at least one of the
      following criteria:
    2. “B” average or better in all work attempted while registered as an undergraduate student
      working for a degree, or
    3. “B” or better average in all work attempted while registered as an upper division
      undergraduate student working for a baccalaureate degree.
    4. A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and a previous graduate degree from a regionally accredited institution.
    5. The equivalent bachelor’s and/or graduate degrees from a foreign institution.
  2. Submission of a GRE/GMAT score is required unless specifically waived by the College.
  3. All specific and additional requirements of the graduate program to which admission is sought (including requirements to submit standardized test scores).

Standardized testing requirements and supplemental application materials vary by program. For program-specific admissions requirements, the programs list their requirements in the Academic Catalog and their webpage (Examples: MA in Criminal Justice Administration Catalog and MA in Crimal Justice Administration Webpage; MBA Catalog and MBA Webpage; MAT Catalog and MAT Webpage). For consideration as an exception, students should present evidence of their potential for academic success. It is at the discretion of the program faculty and college dean to accept exception requests.

For readmission consideration, students must submit a new graduate application, application fee, and any required supporting materials. Readmission is at the discretion of the program faculty and college dean and is not guaranteed.

International Students

USF Sarasota-Manatee applicants whose native language is not English must demonstrate English proficiency by meeting the minimum test score requirements of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) as follows: 550 on the paper-based, 79 on the internet-based TOEFL (IBT), or 6.5 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). USF Sarasota-Manatee admits International students under the same requirements as domestic students; however, international students must also provide an official evaluation of any post-secondary course work completed in a foreign country if the institution does not hold a regional accreditation from a U.S. regional accrediting body. The Academic Catalog – International and the Admissions Webpage – International contain detailed information on admission requirements for international students.

Alternative Types of Enrollment

In continued support of USF Sarasota-Manatee’s Mission and Values, community members have the opportunity to enroll as non-degree-seeking students in for-credit courses. However, academic-prerequisite standards still apply to specific courses. The Academic Catalog – Degree/Non-degree explains the difference in the definitions of degree and non-degree students. The Registration Webpage contains detailed information for non-degree-seeking students. USF Sarasota-Manatee also offers non-credit, tuition-waived programs, with specific requirements, through the local Senior Citizen Tuition Waiver Program. Neither non-degree-seeking students nor students participating in the senior citizen tuition waiver program are matriculated students. Records and Registration processes their forms and registration.


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