Stephen F. Austin State University encourages qualified applicants to apply for admission. Students seeking admission should make every effort to complete the appropriate procedures as soon as possible. Undergraduate application for admission, preliminary academic counseling and evaluation of previous college course work are available on campus in the Office of Admissions.
Applicants wishing to apply for admission to the university must complete the Texas Common Application. It is strongly recommended that applicants apply by completing the electronic version of the Texas Common Application, which is available at www.applytexas.org.
All new undergraduate applicants for admission are required to submit a non-refundable application fee of $35. Former SFA students are not required to pay an application fee. The application fee for international students is $50.
First-semester freshman applicants are those who have graduated from high school and have not attended a college or university since high school graduation. Students who have participated in a high school dual credit program or concurrent enrollment program while in high school are considered first-semester freshmen. Freshman applicants must submit official test results from either the American College Test (ACT) or the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT).
High School Preparation
SFA requires first-time freshman applicants to have completed the Recommended High School Program or the Distinguished Achievement Program to ensure they have received adequate preparation for college-level work. Applicants who have not completed one of these programs will need to demonstrate that they have completed a high school curriculum more rigorous than what is required of the Minimum Graduation Plan. Applicants from accredited private high schools and out-of-state high schools will be required to complete a curriculum similar to the Recommended High School Program.
Applicants for admission to SFA will be required to meet the following class rank and minimum test scores:
|High School Rank||SAT Reasoning Test Score||ACT Score|
|1st quarter||No minimum score||No minimum score|
*Students are required to submit the SAT Reasoning Test with writing scores or the ACT with writing scores. At this time, admission requirements do not include writing scores.
The admission files of applicants who do not have a minimum of the Recommended High School Program and those who do not meet the rank-in-class and test score requirements will be individually reviewed. Admission will be offered to those applicants who demonstrate potential for academic success. It is recommended that applicants complete Part II of the Texas Common Application, as this information will assist with the review process. Factors used in the review process include an applicant's high school record to include high school preparation, class rank and standardized test score on the SAT or ACT. Additional factors such as high school activities, responsibilities while attending high school, bilingual proficiency and region of residence will also be taken into consideration. Admission will be granted to students who have been awarded competitive scholarships by an official SFA scholarship committee.
Graduates of Non-Accredited High Schools, Home Schooled and GED Recipients
Those applicants who graduate from non-accredited high schools, who are home schooled or received a General Education Development (GED) certificate, will be assessed on an individual basis. Any student attending a non-accredited high school must submit an official high school transcript and official SAT or ACT scores. Home-schooled applicants must submit official SAT or ACT scores and academic records of their high school curriculum. GED applicants must submit official GED scores and SAT or ACT scores. Applicants whose academic background indicates probability of success may be admitted.
Freshman applicants who have attempted college-level courses while in high school must earn a 2.0 minimum grade point average on all attempted transferable college course work. Failure to do so may result in the imposition of academic probation during the first semester of enrollment or the withdrawal of the SFA admission offer.
Other than the Concurrent Enrollment Program, SFA does not admit any applicant for any semester that begins prior to the graduation of his/her high school class.
- Submit the Texas Common Application for freshman (www.applytexas.org) with a $35 non-refundable application fee.
- Arrange for official ACT or SAT scores to be sent to the university. Test scores from the junior year are acceptable, and the submission of multiple test scores is permissible. Students enrolling in the fall of 2007 and future semesters are required to submit the SAT Reasoning Test with writing scores or the ACT with writing scores. At this time, admission requirements do not include writing scores. The highest composite ACT or SAT (critical reading plus math) result is used to determine admissibility. Test results must be forwarded directly from the testing service to SFA. Be sure to designate Stephen F. Austin State University in the ACT or SAT application. (The SFA school code is 4188 for ACT and 6682 for SAT.)
- Arrange for an official high school transcript to be sent to the SFA Office of Admissions following completion of junior year. The transcript must indicate the applicant's numerical class rank at the conclusion of the junior year or first semester of the senior year.
- Arrange for official transcripts from all post-secondary educational institutions attended, to be forwarded to the Office of Admissions, regardless of whether transfer credit was earned or is desired.
Texas Success Initiative (TSI)
The Texas Success Initiative is the statewide program in Texas to promote academic success for all students by ensuring that they are well prepared for college-level work. To support that goal, the TSI program requires students to earn exemption from placement testing or undergo assessment in the areas of reading, writing and mathematics.
- According to SFA and state regulations, you are exempt from TSI requirements ONLY if you satisfy one of the following conditions:
- You possess an associate or baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution of higher education.
- You scored at a particular level on the SAT, ACT, or TAKS. (See the Academic Advising Center, Ralph Steen Library 203, for details or visit the department's Web site: www.sfasu.edu/go/advising).
- You are not a matriculated (degree-seeking) student.
- You have already met collegiate readiness standards at another public college or university in Texas and provide documentation of this status.
- You have earned college-level credit from an accredited higher education institution in designated reading, writing and mathematics courses with a grade of "C" or higher in each course.
- You are serving on active duty as a member of the armed forces, the Texas National Guard, or as a member of a reserve component of the armed forces and have been serving for at least three years preceding enrollment.
- You have been honorably discharged, retired or released from active duty as a member of the armed forces or the Texas National Guard on or after Aug. 1, 1990.
- If you are not exempt by any of the above provisions, you must have TSI test scores on file prior to registration. The following tests have been approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for TSI assessment: ASSET, COMPASS, ACCUPLACER, THEA.
- Passing TSI Scores:
Math Reading Writing Essay THEA 230 230 220 5 ASSET 38 41 40 5 COMPASS 39 81 59 5 ACCUPLACER 63 78 80 5
- A student whose scores fall below the passing scores must enroll in the appropriate developmental course(s). The student is considered college ready after earning a grade of C or above in the required developmental course(s).
- Students may retest at any time on any of the four approved TSI tests. If a passing score is attained on any area of the retest, the student is recognized as college ready in that area.
- Students who are not college ready must be enrolled in developmental work immediately and continuously until they have demonstrated college readiness with the exception that developmental work in math may be delayed until work in reading has been completed.
- A student who has completed 12 or more credit hours in courses numbered 100 or above is not required to register for developmental courses in summer. Students with fewer credit hours must register for one developmental course during their first term of summer enrollment.
- Contact the Academic Advising Center in Ralph Steen Library 203 to verify TSI status, complete an individual TSI Action Plan, submit new test scores or register for developmental courses. The Advising Center's phone number is (936) 468-5803; the fax number is (936) 468-7611. Visit the Web site: www.sfasu.edu/advising/.
- All students must satisfy all provisions of the Texas Success Initiative program before receiving an undergraduate degree.
Mature Student Admission
Applicants who have not attended high school in the previous five years or who have not attended college for an extended period of time may apply for mature student admission. Eligibility for admission will be based on their ability to succeed at SFA utilizing their individual educational, work and personal life experiences. Military service veterans with honorable or general discharges are eligible to apply for mature student admission. Applicants who did not graduate from high school are required to submit official GED (General Educational Development Test) scores.
Procedures for Mature Student Applicants
- Submit a completed Texas Common Application for Admission (www.applytexas.org) with a $35 non-refundable application fee.
- Arrange for high school transcript to be sent to the SFA Office of Admissions (required whether or not applicant graduated).
- Submit a copy of the GED (if not a high school graduate).
- Arrange for transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended to be forwarded to SFA Office of Admissions, whether or not transfer credit was earned or desired.
- Submit a copy of the DD-214 (if a veteran).
- Submit a completed Mature Student Supplemental Information Form printed from the web (www.sfasu.edu/admissions). Additional documentation indicating probability of success in college may be required.
- Mature students are subject to all applicable Texas Success Initiative requirements.
Students who have previously attended a regionally accredited institution must apply as transfer students.
Those college transfer applicants who have completed less than 15 semester hours of transferable college credit must have an overall 2.0 grade point average on all transferable work attempted and must also satisfy eligibility requirements for first-semester freshmen. Transfer applicants who have completed more than 15 semester hours must:
- not currently be on suspension from another educational institution, and
- have an earned grade point average of at least 2.00 (on a 4.00 scale) on all transferable work attempted.
- Submit a completed Texas Common Application (www.applytexas.org) for Transfer Students with a $35 non-refundable application fee.
- Arrange for official transcripts from all post-secondary educational institutions attended to be forwarded to the Office of Admissions regardless of whether transfer credit was earned or is desired.
- Following receipt of the completed application and all transcripts, previous collegiate studies are evaluated for transferable credit. Applicants are notified by mail of their admission status and the transferability of course work.
SFA accepts transfer credit from regionally accredited institutions on a course-by course basis as determined by the Office of Admissions. All courses are examined in terms of content, level and credit hours awarded and are subject to the following conditions:
- Courses are evaluated and transferred to SFA on a course-by-course basis by comparing the levels, content and course prefix. Grades and course credits are transferred exactly as they appear on the official transcript of the institution where they were taken.
- Credit hours for courses are transferred based on the number of hours that are shown on the official transcript of the institution where they were taken and not on the credit value of the SFA course equivalent.
- General en bloc credit is assigned to a course that is transferable but is not an exact equivalent by level or by description. In this case, the student's academic dean will determine its acceptability into degree programs.
- Junior/community college courses transfer as lower-level (freshman or sophomore level) credit. Credits from senior colleges/universities transfer at the same level at which they were taken (lower or upper-level). Graduate level courses that are used as upper-level courses to complete a bachelor's degree may not be used later in a graduate degree.
- Most academic credit is transferable with the exception of remedial or developmental courses. Some departments may limit the number of credits that may be applied to a degree.
- A maximum of 66 academic hours plus 4 hours of kinesiology activity from junior or community colleges may apply toward a bachelor's degree. If more than 66 hours are transferred, the student's academic dean will determine which hours will be included in the 66 and how those courses will be substituted in the degree plan.
- A repeated course is considered only once and the best grade is used when computing the transfer grade point average needed for acceptance into SFA.
- Grade points from transferable courses are not calculated into SFA's grade point average and appear on the student's record as transfer credit.
- Quarter hours convert to semester hours based of the following formula: 1 quarter-hour = 2/3 of semester hour. All other types of credit are converted to semester hours.
- There is no limit for credits transferred from senior colleges/universities. However, all students must complete a minimum of 42 semester hours in residence at SFA in order to earn a bachelor's degree.
- Course work earned from educational experience obtained in the armed forces is accepted in transfer on a limited basis. The "Guide to the Evaluation of Experience in the Armed Services" is used by the Office of Admissions for evaluating military credit. Military transcripts such as the AARTS, SMART, Community College of the Air Force, and the Coast Guard Institute are used in the evaluation review process.
- Credit for vocational/technical, WECM and experiential learning can only be used in the Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences degree program (BAAS) or in certain approved signed articulation agreements. Individuals wanting additional information on the BAAS degree program should contact the Dean's Office of the College of Liberal and Applied Arts.
Students may repeat courses taken at SFA at other accredited institutions. Transfer hours will, however, be governed by the following rules:
- The grades earned at SFA will remain on the transcript;
- The hours attempted at SFA will not be changed as a result of course work completed elsewhere;
- Transfer credit for a course originally taken at SFA has no effect on the grade point average for work attempted at SFA;
- Transfer hours of repeated work may be used to satisfy degree requirements other than those related to grade point average.
Equivalency Guides for all Texas community colleges are available at www.sfasu.edu/go/transfer. Two-year planning guides for all major degree programs using the TCCNS are available through the Office of Admissions and on the Web. Transfer students from community colleges are encouraged to discuss their degree program and course selection with an admissions counselor in the Office of Admissions.
Transfer of Core Curriculum
In accordance with the Texas Legislature, if a student completes the common core curriculum at a state-supported institution in Texas, that block of courses may be transferred to any other institution of higher education and must be substituted for the receiving institution's core curriculum. A student also will receive credit for each of the individual courses transferred that meet the core requirements. Students who are Core Complete at any Texas school are considered as Core Complete at SFA.
Transfer Credit Dispute Resolution
Students transferring to SFA may appeal the non-transferability of lower-division course work in accordance to the guidelines set forth by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
Written notice of non-acceptable courses must and will be sent to the student as well as to the sending institution. Reason for denying credit may be requested from SFA. Students wanting to dispute the denial of credit must contact the designated official at the sending or receiving institution. The Office of Admissions is the designated official at SFA.
SFA, the sending institution and the student shall attempt to resolve the transfer of the course credit in accordance with board rules and guidelines. If the dispute is not resolved to the satisfaction of the student or the sending institution within 45 days after the date the student received written notice of denial, SFA must notify the commissioner of its reasons for denial of credit. The commissioner of higher education or the commissioner's designee shall make the final determination concerning a dispute and will give written notice of the decision to the student and to the institutions.
The Coordinating Board shall collect transfer disputes data and the disposition of each case that is reported to the commissioner.
If SFA has cause to believe that a course being presented by a student for transfer is not of an acceptable level of quality, it will first contact the sending institution and attempt to resolve the problem. In the event SFA and the sending institution are unable to come to a satisfactory resolution, SFA may notify the commissioner of higher education who may investigate the course. If its quality is found to be unacceptable, the board may discontinue funding for the course.
Texas Common Course Numbering SystemSFA is a participant in the Texas Common Course Numbering System (TCCNS). The purpose of the system is to assist students who are transferring between participating institutions. The system utilizes single unique course alphabetic prefixes and numbers to identify freshman and sophomore-level courses that are common between two or more member colleges or universities. The appropriate common course identifier appears parenthetically following each course title in the departmental section of this bulletin. Refer to the Appendix in the back of this Bulletin for a listing of currently approved TCCNS courses or contact the Office of Admissions for additional information.
Admission Policy for Former Students
Students who have previously attended SFA and who have not enrolled for the previous fall or spring semester must satisfy the following re-enrollment requirements:
- submit a completed Texas Common Application (www.applytexas.org) for Former Students;
- submit official transcripts from all post-secondary educational institutions attended since last enrolled at SFA.
Former students must have earned a 2.0 GPA on all transferable course work completed at other institutions since their last enrollment at SFA. Students currently on academic suspension from other institutions are not admissible. Former students are not required to submit an application fee.
Additional Procedures for All New Students
Prior to registration, all new first-semester freshmen and transfer students should:
- Apply for on-campus housing online and submit the $50 deposit to the University Business Office, P.O. Box 13053, SFA Station, Nacogdoches, Texas 75962-3053. All students are encouraged to take advantage of the benefits of on-campus housing. Single students under the age of 21 with fewer than 60 semester hours of college credit are required to live in university housing unless otherwise approved by the Residence Life Department under rules detailed in the Residence section of this Bulletin. Residence at SFA is not assigned until students have been admitted. Therefore, it is to their advantage to complete the admission application process early.
- Satisfy Texas Success Initiative (TSI) requirements [see previous section].
- Submit a copy of their immunization record to the Student Health Clinic, P.O. Box 13058, SFA Station, Nacogdoches, Texas 75962-3058.
- All new students admitted for the fall semester are encouraged to attend one of the Summer Orientation sessions. Applications for Summer Orientation are available online at www.sfasu.edu/ccs/orientation and are mailed, starting in January, to all admitted students.
- All new students seeking financial assistance through federal, state and institutional sources should apply as early as possible to ensure full consideration for all available awards. [See Fees, Expenses, & Financial Aid for further information.]
First-semester freshman applicants who graduate from high school, but fail to satisfy other admission requirements as a result of significant extenuating circumstances, may appeal for admission through the SFA Academic Opportunity Program (AOP) by completing and submitting the AOP form and two letters of recommendation to the Office of Admissions. The deadline for fall semester freshman applicants is July 1 and November 1 for spring semester applicants.
Applicants who were denied admission as transfer students may appeal for admission through the Transfer Appeals Program by completing and submitting the Transfer Appeals form and two letters of recommendation to the Office of Admissions. The deadline for transfer admission appeals for the fall or spring semester is 8 am on the first day of class of the applying semester. It is best to appeal well before the first-class-day deadline.
Appeals are initiated in the Office of Admissions by filing the appropriate materials. Appeals are reviewed by the Admission Appeals Committee. Following review of appeals, the committee submits recommendations to the executive director of enrollment management and the provost/vice president for academic affairs for the final decision. Students admitted through this procedure are assigned to the Academic Advising Center for advisement. Students may also be assigned to the Academic Assistance Resource Center for tutorial assistance.
First-semester freshman applicants not meeting the admission requirements may become eligible for regular admission by enrolling in the Summer Pathways to Discovery Program. More information about their program may be obtained by calling the Office of Admissions at (936) 468-2504.
Transfer students with less than a 2.0 grade point average who are not currently on academic suspension at another institution are eligible for provisional admission to the summer semester through the Transfer Provisional Program. Students who complete up to nine semester hours, excluding developmental courses, of work as approved by their academic dean and earn at least a 2.0 grade point average on all work attempted may be eligible to enroll for the fall semester.
Students who do not successfully complete the Transfer Provisional Program as specified by their academic dean may only be re-admitted to SFA upon presentation of academic credits transferred from one or more other institutions for which the overall grade point average is 2.0 or higher. Calculation of this grade point average will be based on all non-SFA academic credits earned; it will include credit earned both before and after participation in the SFA Transfer Provisional Program.
International student applicants are evaluated on the quality, content and level of previous academic work. Graduates from international secondary schools who have completed the equivalent of at least an American high school diploma may apply for admission to SFA. Applications may be submitted electronically at www.applytexas.org or by writing to: SFA Office of Admissions, P.O. Box 13051, SFA Station, Nacogdoches, Texas 75962-3051.
Applicants whose native language is not English are required to provide an official TOEFL score report to SFA from the Educational Testing Service, Box 6153, Princeton, N.J. 08541-6153, USA. SFA requires a minimum composite TOEFL score of 525 on the paper-based test, 193 on the computer-based test, or 69 on the Internet-based test. However, the files of applicants who do not meet minimum TOFEL scores will be individually reviewed. Alternatives to TOEFL are successful completion of the American English Language Institute (AELI) or a score of 6.0 on the IELTS exam with no band scores below 5.5.
Applicants who have attended international post-secondary schools and are transferring to SFA must provide certified copies of official transcripts from each college, university or technical school attended. Students are required to submit certified English translations of all documents. International transfer students are considered eligible for admission if they are not currently on suspension from another educational institution and have a grade point average of at least 2.0 (on a 4.0 scale) in transferable courses.
International students also must satisfy all applicable requirements of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Students must complete all applicable pages of the International Freshman or Transfer Student Application and submit a $50 application fee, all transcripts, evaluations and test scores to determine admission status. A letter to the student will confirm admission to SFA and provide information on the amount of financial guarantee that must be provided in order for SFA to issue the I-20 for an F-1 (student) or DS-2019 for the J-1 (exchange student) visa. Complete the Statement of Financial Support (mailed to the student with the acceptance letter) showing complete financial verification. The student who wishes may provide this information with the initial application using the International Student Application (pages 1-4). The estimated cost for an academic year of nine months with a 12-hour academic load each semester is $20,300. This amount includes out-of-state tuition, fees, housing and food, required student insurance, books and supplies. This estimate may be significantly reduced for those qualifying for various scholarship programs offered by or through SFA. Students with an F-1 visa are eligible to work on campus for up to 20 hours per week; they are not eligible to work off campus.
Upon issuance of the I-20, the student should present the I-20, the letter of admission and all financial documents at the nearest U.S. Embassy or consulate to apply for the appropriate F-1 or J-1 student visa. All of these documents will be needed upon arrival in the United States when clearing customs/ immigration at the border or airport. New students are required to attend International Student Orientation at the beginning of each semester. Provisions are made for transportation to SFA from IAH (Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston) upon arrival in Texas.
Although not a requirement for admission, all international students are subject to all applicable TSI requirements as mandated by the state of Texas.
Students interested in participating in the AELI Program should consult www.sfasu.edu/aeli for information on topics, schedules and costs. Information also may be obtained from the Office of International Programs, P.O. Box 6152, SFA Station, Nacogdoches, TX 75962-6152.
SFA welcomes applications from individuals who wish to enroll in a limited number of courses solely for self-improvement or personal enrichment. Usually, these applicants wish to enrich their lives through lifelong learning experiences and are 55 years of age and above. For these applicants, no SAT or ACT scores or transcripts are required. Applicants should contact the Office of Admissions for application forms and additional information.
Admission in this category does not constitute matriculation to the university nor are these applicants eligible for financial aid or veterans' benefits. Applicants are also subject to all applicable Texas Success Initiative regulations.