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Application Requirements

Required of All Applicants:

Deadlines
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  1. Completed online application with non-refundable $55 application fee.
  2. One set of unofficial transcripts from each university/college previously attended. For U.S. applicants, the degree must be from a regionally accredited university/college. An applicant with a pending degree must provide official verification of expected degree completion from institution's Registrar or school official. An undergraduate degree is required to apply to a master's program. A master's degree is required to apply for a doctoral program. Please note: if admitted you will need to submit official transcripts prior to enrolling.
  3. Applicants must have earned their Bachelor's and/or Masters' degrees from a regionally accredited institution. They must provide a background of academic preparation and/or professional experience that demonstrates their ability to pursue graduate level programs.
    • MA and Credential applicants: Minimum GPA of 2.75
    • Doctoral applicants: Minimum GPA of 3.0 from a graduate program
  4. Two current, signed letters of recommendation, noting suitability for graduate work.
  5. Current résumé.
  6. A Statement of Intent
    • All applicants should address the following prompt in their application: 'Outline the purpose for seeking admission to the specific School of Education graduate program being chosen; include career and academic goals.'

    Applicants to the following programs should also address these specific areas in their statement:

    • School Counseling: Describe previous experience and professional goals in counseling children, adolescents, or young adults. State your specific interest in the School Counseling program at USF.
    • Marriage and Family Therapy: Describe your interest in becoming a Marriage and Family Therapist and specifically discuss why you are applying to our program at USF as it relates to our program mission. Please address your journey as it relates to this career path and any relevant experiences you have in community mental health or working with underserved populations.
    • Higher Education and Student Affairs: Identify and analyze a current issue related to equity in higher education that is important to you. Explain what role you see higher education and student affairs practitioners playing in addressing inequity and promoting equity and social justice in higher education, and share how this aligns with your professional goals (limit is 2 pages, double-spaced).
    • Teacher Education – Urban Education and Social Justice: Include your experiences working with urban youth and your vision for enacting social justice as a teacher.

See these additional requirements for applicants in the following categories:

Catholic Education Leadership (CEL) Applicants

Applicants must submit evidence of three years minimum for the master's program, and five years minimum for the doctoral program, of Catholic school teaching experience at the elementary, secondary, or collegiate level, or permission by the CEL faculty to waive this prerequisite.

Credential Applicants

Teaching Credential Applicants must also submit:
  1. Complete the Basic Skills Requirement*
Multiple subject candidates can complete the CSET Multiple Subject exams PLUS the CSET Writing Skills exam to satisfy the Basic Skills Requirement. 
  1. Proof of subject matter competency (CSET for multiple subject candidates; CSET or waiver for single subject credentials).

Teaching credential applicants living outside California at the time of their application should contact the department for testing requirements.

MA Special Education Mild/Moderate Credential Applicants must also submit:
  1. Complete the Basic Skills Requirement*
Multiple subject candidates can complete the CSET Multiple Subject exams PLUS the CSET Writing Skills exam to satisfy the Basic Skills Requirement. 
  1. Proof of subject matter competency (CSET for multiple subject candidates).
Pupil Personnel Services Applicants must also submit:
  1. Complete the Basic Skills Requirement* and Copy of Certificate of Clearance

*Basic Skills Requirement – Candidates must complete the Basic Skills Requirement through one of the 8 available options:

  1. Pass the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST) – Individuals only need to pass the CBEST once; CBEST passing scores remain valid indefinitely for all credential purposes. To pass the CBEST, one must obtain a minimum score of 41 in each of the three sections—reading, writing, and mathematics. However, a score as low as 37 on an individual section is acceptable if the total score is at least 123. Any or all sections of the CBEST can be repeated as many times as necessary to obtain a passing score.
  2. Pass the CSET: Multiple Subjects plus the CSET: Writing Skills Examination – Passing the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET): Multiple Subjects examination in combination with the CSET: Writing Skills examination meets the basic skills requirement. Passing exam scores on the CSET: Multiple Subjects examination used only for purposes of meeting the basic skills requirement remain valid indefinitely. The CSET: Writing Skills may not be used alone and must always be used in combination with the CSET: Multiple Subjects examination.
  3. Demonstrate proficiency on the California State University (CSU) Early Assessment Program  Demonstrating proficiency on the CSU Early Assessment Program (EAP) (English and Mathematics sections) is sufficient to meet the basic skills requirement. For use of the EAP, individuals must achieve a score of “College Ready” or “Exempt” for both math and English.
  4. Demonstrate proficiency on the California State University (CSU) Placement Examinations – Demonstrating proficiency on the CSU Placement Examinations (English Placement Test [EPT] and Entry Level Mathematics [ELM]) is sufficient to meet the basic skills requirement. For use of the EPT, individuals must achieve a score of 151. For use of the ELM, individuals must achieve a score of 50.
  5. Pass a Basic Skills Examination from Another State – The Commission will accept basic skills examinations from other states. There is no recency requirement for the date the examination was passed. The list of Basic Skills examinations from other states accepted by the Commission can be found on the CTC website
  6. Achieve the minimum acceptable scores on the College Board SAT examination – Individuals who achieve a score of at least 500 on the SAT English exam and a score of at least 550 on the SAT mathematics exam are determined to have met the basic skills requirement.
  7. Achieve the minimum acceptable scores on the ACT examination  Individuals who achieve a score of at least 22 on the ACT English exam and a score of at least 23 on the ACT mathematics exam are determined to have met the basic skills requirement.
  8. Achieve the minimum acceptable scores on selected College Board Advanced Placement (AP) examinations – Individuals who achieve:
    1.  A score of 3 or higher on the College Board AP English exam
    2.  A score of 3 or higher on the AP Calculus exam or AP Statistics exam, are determined to have met the basic skills requirement.

See full details on CTC website.

ALL APPLICANTS: Copies of passing scores can be accepted until official scores are submitted.

Doctoral Applicants

Doctoral applicants must also submit:
  1. MA thesis (excerpt or complete copy) or graduate level paper.
  2. Official scores for either the Graduate Record Examinations or Miller Analogies Test (MAT). Test scores must be sent directly to USF by the Education Testing Service (GRE) or the Psychological Corporation (MAT). No photocopies of the results will be accepted. Scores must have been obtained within the past five years.

USF's GRE Code is 4850 (no department code is required).

Note to all Doctoral Applicants: The initial admission to a School of Education doctoral program is a preliminary decision. During their first year, students develop a portfolio in order to demonstrate competence in research methodology and department-specific content. Completion of portfolio requirements is necessary for final admission into a doctoral program.

International Applicants

International Applicants must also submit
  • Copy of passing scores for one of the following: TOEFL, IELTS or Pearson Test of English Academic. Passing scores are listed below.
  • Please refer to the Graduate Admission website for exceptions to the required international applicant testing and additional information.

    • TOEFL* (Note: The USF TOEFL code is 4850.)
      • 580 (paper test) or 92 with no sub score lower than 20 (Internet-based test) for master's applicants
      • 600 (paper test) or 100 with no sub score lower than 20 (Internet-based test) for doctoral applicants
    • IELTS
      • 7.0 for master's applicants and doctoral applicants
    • PTE
      • 62 for master's applicants
      • 68 for doctoral applicants
  • Certificate of Finances
International Applicants applying to a credential program must also submit

International applicants are encouraged to apply early.

Immunization Requirement

For students who plan to live on University-owned property, proof of immunization is required before registering for classes. For more information, please see our Immunization Requirements page.

Undocumented and DACA Approved Applicants

The University of San Francisco considers applications for graduate programs, regardless of citizenship status, based upon academic merit and achievement. Please visit the Undocumented Students page for more resources or contact the schoolofeducation@usfca.edu for questions about School of Education programs or application.