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English Proficiency Requirement


English proficiency for international students may be demonstrated in several ways:

TOEFL, IELTS, DET score reports

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

Test of English as a Foreign Language

  • 79 iBT (internet-based)
  • 550 pBT (paper-based)

International English Language Testing System

  • Overall band 6.5

Duolingo English Test (for undergraduate admission only)

  • Total minimum score = 100

Successful completion of a U.S. academic program

Students must have received a high school diploma, associate degree or higher from a U.S. institution within the previous two years prior to beginning studies at SFA.

Transfer students

  1. Cumulative GPA of at least 2.50
  2. completion of at least 24 semester credit hours at time of transfer
    • and completion of equivalent of ENGL 1301 and ENGL 1302 with a minimum grade of B in each and verified for transfer credit by SFA

ELS and TIEP students

ELS students

  • Completion of Level 112 at an ELS Center

Texas Intensive English Program students

  • Completion of Level 160 with no grade lower than B (not B-), or
  • Level 150 with no grade lower than A (not A-) at TIEC

Several graduate programs require a higher English proficiency level: Educator Preparation Program, Counseling program, and the Student Affairs and Higher Education program.


Some students may qualify for a waiver from English proficiency testing. A student who claims a waiver takes the responsibility of being able to perform at an academic level appropriate for their studies. Read the information below carefully to determine if you qualify.

Waivers are not available for applicants to any Educator Preparation Program, Counseling program or Student Affairs and Higher Education program.

English Proficiency Waiver countries

Students educated and earning a diploma or degree in these countries at the secondary or post-secondary level in English will be exempt from additional English language testing.

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Anguilla
  • Australia
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Bermuda
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Canada (except Quebec)
  • Cayman Islands
  • Dominica
  • Fiji
  • Ghana
  • Gibraltar
  • Grenada
  • Guyana
  • Ireland
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Kiribati
  • Liberia
  • Malta
  • Marshall Islands
  • Mauritius
  • Micronesia
  • Montserrat
  • New Zealand
  • Nigeria
  • St. Kitts and Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Singapore
  • South Sudan
  • St. Vincent and Grenadines
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turks and Caicos
  • United Kingdom and Northern Ireland

Secondary Waiver countries

Students educated and earning a degree in these countries at the post-secondary level in English will be exempt from additional English language testing.

  • Botswana
  • Gambia
  • Namibia
  • Sierra Leone
  • Uganda
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Note: This exemption does not apply to the Master of Arts in professional counseling or Master of Arts in student affairs and higher education graduate programs. Applicants to these programs are required to submit a TOEFL score of at least 90 iBT or an IELTS of 6.5, if they do not have an exemption from another category.

Any original documents you wish to send should be routed to one of the following addresses:

Regular mail and DHL
Office of International Programs
P.O. Box 6152, SFA Station
Nacogdoches, Texas 75962

Express mail - FedEx, UPS:
Office of International Programs
905 E. Library Drive
Steen Library
Nacogdoches, Texas 75962


Office of International Programs
Fax: 936.468.7215
Staff directory

Come see us:
Steen Library, Suite 103