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Application Requirements

Required of All Applicants:

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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.
    • MA and Credential applicants: Minimum GPA of 2.75
    • Doctoral applicants: Minimum GPA of 3.0 from a graduate program
  3. Two current, signed letters of recommendation, noting suitability for graduate work.
  4. Current résumé.
  5. A Statement of Intent outlining 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 professional career goals in counseling children, adolescents, or young adults, as well as personal interest in the program. Describe earlier formal or informal experiences working with children or adolescents.
  • Higher Education and Student Affairs: Address the question: What do you see as the role of higher education leaders and student affairs practitioners in promoting diversity, equity and social justice in higher education?
  • Administrative Services Credentials: Address the question: What do you see as the role of school leaders in promoting diversity, equity and social justice in K-12 education?
  • Teacher Education-Urban Education and Social Justice: Include your experiences working with urban youth and your vision for enacting social justice as a teacher.

Please note: 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.

See these additional requirements for applicants in the following categories:

Credential Applicants

Teaching Credential Applicants must also submit:
  1. Passing CBEST scores. Multiple subject candidates can substitute the Multiple Subject CSET Writing Exam.
  2. 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. Passing CBEST scores. Multiple subject candidates can substitute the Multiple Subject CSET Writing Exam.
  2. Proof of subject matter competency (CSET for multiple subject candidates).
Preliminary Administrative Credential Applicants must also submit:
  1. The Preliminary Administrative Services Credential program is open to applicants who hold a valid clear or life California based credential (i.e., a valid clear teaching credential, PPS credential, or Library Science credential), have a minimum of three years full-time experience with that credential, and are currently employed full-time in an educational setting. Applicants who do not meet these criteria will not be considered for this program.
    1. Evidence of an earned baccalaureate degree
    2. Valid clear or life California based credential (i.e., a valid clear teaching credential, PPS credential, or Library Science credential)
    3. Minimum of three years full-time experience with that credential, and are currently employed full-time in an educational setting
    4. Passing CBEST scores
    5. Teaching/PPS/librarian experience must total 5 years after completion of the Administrative Services program

    Verification of all credential(s) and experience(s) must be on school district letterhead and signed by a school district official.

Pupil Personnel Services Applicants must also submit:
  1. California Basic Teaching Credential or Copy of Certificate of Clearance
    If you do not hold a valid Certificate of Clearance, you can apply for one through the School of Education Credential Analyst. Please review the Certificate of Clearance Information Sheet for more information.
  2. Passing CBEST scores.
ALL APPLICANTS: Copies of passing scores can be accepted until official scores are submitted.

INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS are not eligible to apply for California state credential programs, including Teaching, School Counseling, Special Education, Teaching Reading, and Administrative Services.

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).

The GRE® Program Announced New Test Preparation Tools to Help Prospective Graduate School Students

ETS issued a press release noting that "(t)he GRE® Program has unveiled new test preparation tools for the GRE® revised General Test to help prospective graduate and business school students do their best on test day. The new tools are available in a wider variety of media to provide more test preparation options." One of the tools is a test preparation video "GRE® Success Starter: The test maker's guide to doing your best." For more information about this video and other GRE® test preparation materials, go to: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/gre-program-unveils-test-preparation-140100067.html

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
  1. Copy of passing TOEFL, IELTS or PTE scores. Required scores are the following:
    • TOEFL*
      580 (Paper Test) or 92 with no sub score lower than 20 (Internet-based Test) for M.A. applicants
      600 (Paper Test) or 100 (Internet-based Test) for doctoral applicants
    • IELTS
      7.0 for M.A. and doctoral applicants
    • PTE
      62 for M.A. applicants
      68 for doctoral applicants
  2. Certificate of Finances.

The USF TOEFL code is 4850.

International applicants are encouraged to apply early.

Important Notice
For international applicants currently living and attending school in the USA as of April 2003:

  1. Inform the international student advisor (ISA) at your current school or college that you have been accepted to USF and plan to transfer here.
  2. Ask your current school or college ISA to release your SEVIS record to USF as soon as possible. The release date will probably be the end date of your current school’s academic session/semester/quarter. If you need USF to issue your SEVIS I-20 form before the academic session end date, you may request an earlier release date.
  3. Once the release date has passed, USF will have access to your SEVIS record so we can issue and mail a SEVIS I-20 to you.

* The following exceptions apply to USF’s English language proficiency test score requirement:

Applicants who have completed a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, or two years or more of studies in a degree program in English at a higher education institution in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom, American Samoa, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grand Cayman, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad/Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, or Republic of Palau are not required to submit an English language proficiency test score

Applicants from countries where the government requires 11 years of mandatory English instruction may be exempt from providing an English language test score according to the discretion of an individual graduate program (for example, Scandinavian countries such as Norway). 

Please note: The University reserves the right to request additional English proficiency exams from any applicant based on the entirety of the application review; or, if the applicant’s proficiency in English should prove inadequate after admission to a program.

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.