Stephen F. Austin State University

English Proficiency Requirements

English Proficiency Requirements

Stephen F. Austin State University offers Conditional Admission pending English proficiency for international students at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. This means that you do not need English proficiency to be accepted into an academic program. You do, however, need English proficiency in order to begin your academic studies.

PLEASE NOTE THAT ALL APPLICANTS MUST SUBMIT SOME KIND OF PROOF OF ENGLISH PROFICIENCY WITH THEIR APPLICATION MATERIALS - NO STUDENT WITH A TOEFL BELOW 51 OR IELTS BELOW 5.0 WILL BE CONSIDERED FOR ADMISSION, CONDITIONAL OR OTHERWISE.

English proficiency may be demonstrated in several ways:

All English tests must have been taken within the last 2 years to be considered valid for admission.

If an accepted student fails to demonstrate English proficiency upon their arrival, they will be placed in the appropriate level of our English Language Institute (ELI) and must successfully complete this program prior to beginning their academic program.

* The Graduate Mathematical Sciences program and Performing Artist Certificate program have set their English proficiency requirements at TOEFL 70 iBT/500 pBT, IELTS 6.0, and PTE 48.

Option to complete proficiency through the SFA English Language Program (ELI):

Please note that the ELI does not provide beginning English instruction. Students should already possess an intermediate level of English proficiency. To succeed in the ELI program, students should enter with skills equivalent to a score no lower than a 58 on the TOEFL or a 5.5 on the IELTS. Students should have a solid grasp of English grammar, be able to comprehend and respond to conversational English, read and comprehend lower-level academic texts, and write complex sentences. For most students, a minimum of three years' previous study of English is necessary for success in the program.

A student may be considered for conditional admission 'with caution' if a TOEFL score of 51+ or an IELTS score of 5.0 is presented. However, the student will be cautioned that they may be required to repeat at least one level of the English program.

If applicants submit TOEFL or IELTS scores (no more than 2 years old) with their applications, they will be placed as follows:

TOEFL iBT Score IELTS Score Resulting Placement
51 - 57 5.0 ELI Level 3 with caution
58 - 68 5.5 ELI Level 3
69 - 78 6.0 ELI Level 4
79 - 120 6.5 and above University classes
Students will be required to pay $50 fee to take an English Proficiency, if they do not agree on their level placement and wish to be 're-tested' / Placement test through our office before semester classes begin and will be placed into the appropriate level of instruction based on the test results.