Requirements vary by college or school. Students must pass each language course with a minimum grade of C- to move up to the next course level.
College of Arts & Sciences
- Bachelor of Arts: 3 consecutive semesters of the same language
- Bachelor of Science: 2 consecutive semesters of the same language
School of Management
Only students completing the Bachelor of Science in International Business have a language requirement: 3 consecutive semesters of the same language.
School of Nursing & Health Professions
No language requirement.
Specific majors and minors may also require additional semesters of language study. Please check with the appropriate department or your academic adviser.
Accelerated Foreign Language Options
USF offers two accelerated languages (Greek and Latin) where students can fulfill their three-semester requirement in only two semesters. Each course is worth 6 credits.
Students can also take the intensive language class in Spanish, French, Japanese and Chinese (forthcoming) to fulfill their two-semester requirement in one semester. Each course is worth 8 credits.
Areas of Study & Courses
Majors, Minors, Certificates and Courses
Advanced Placement Credit
The establishment of equivalent proficiency determined by results of the Foreign Language Placement Test
Foreign Language CEEB Advanced Placement Examination
AP Language Exam
If you scored a 4 or 5 on the AP language exam, you are automatically exempted from Third Semester (201) and, therefore, satisfy your foreign language requirement. If you plan to continue studying the language at USF, please contact the Coordinator or Director of that language.
AP Literature Exam
If you scored a 4 or 5 in the AP literature exam you are automatically exempted from Fourth Semester (202) and, depending on your level of proficiency, you may also receive credit for another 200 elective. We strongly recommend that you contact the coordinator or director of that language to determine which course might be the best fit for you.
International Baccalaureate Exam Credit
If you scored 4-7 in the Higher Level exam you are automatically exempted from Third Semester (201) and therefore satisfy your language requirement. If you plan to continue studying the language at USF, please contact the Coordinator or Director of that language.
Learn more about Advanced Placement Credit
Transferring Language Credits
USF generally accepts all college-level courses completed at regionally accredited institutions for transfer. Once your official transcript has been processed, talk to the appropriate coordinator or director or take the Foreign Language Placement Test to ensure you enroll in the right class.
Non-English Speaking Background
I am originally from a country where a language other than English is spoken.
If you studied up to eighth grade in a country where a language other than English is spoken and can provide transcripts for completed classes, you may automatically test out of our language requirement. If you do not have any transcripts, and the language you speak is offered at USF, then you must take the Foreign Language Placement Test to determine your proficiency level.
I was raised in a Spanish-speaking environment. Will that affect my language requirement?
You may be able to enroll in Spanish 221. This class will count toward the third semester language requirement.
I speak a foreign language that is not offered at USF. Can I get credit for that language?
Students proficient in any language not offered at the USF who believe they might qualify for a language waiver should contact the appropriate Embassy (or Consulate General) and obtain supporting documentation of proficiency. Validation of school transcripts, which should be equivalent to an eighth grade education, may also be obtained at these locations.
Department of Modern and Classical Languages