Visiting Student FAQ

Thank you for your interest in USF. As you begin to consider your studying at USF, please take time to carefully read through the questions below to help you understand the process.

Frequently Asked Questions

I am not currently a student at the University of San Francisco. How can I take a class?

Persons not currently enrolled at USF may take classes by completing a short application for admission as a Visiting Student (

I am interested in taking graduate classes as a Visiting Student. Can I?

Yes. Persons taking graduate classes as visiting students will be approved by the department and professor teaching the class and complete a short application for admission as a Visiting Student. Email for assistance.

I’m an international student. Am I allowed to take classes as a visiting student?

International students may take classes as a visiting student provided they do not hold a B1 or B2 visa, and are not participating in the visa waiver program. Prior to study, international students should submit the University of San Francisco Visiting International Student Request Form. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your eligibility to study, please contact Enrollment Operations at or call us at (415) 422-6612.

Do I need to apply as a visiting student if I am approved for USF tuition remission benefit?

Yes. USF employees or their family members need to apply as visiting students each semester for which their tuition remission benefit is approved. For more information about tuition remission, please visit the Tuition Benefits page. Apply as a visiting student.

How do I apply online as a visiting student?

Go to our Visiting Student website to learn more before applying. Information about being a visiting student as well as links to the online applications are available on the Visiting Student website.

When can I apply?

Please visit the Visiting Student page to review our visiting student application dates.

As a visiting student do I need to apply to a specific college or school?

Yes. When you submit your visiting student application you are asked to select a college/school. We recommend you choose the college or school that most represents the classes you expect to take as a visitor, though you can still take classes from multiple college/schools.

  • College of Arts and Sciences - Arts: humanities classes, such as history, arts, and philosophy.
  • College of Arts and Sciences - Science: science classes, such as biology, chemistry, and computer science.
  • School of Management: business focused classes, such as management, finance, and accounting.
  • School of Nursing and Health Professions: classes specific to the nursing and health professions fields, such as nutrition, pharmacology, and nursing fundamentals.

When will I hear if I’ve been accepted as a visiting student?

You will receive a decision within two (2) weeks of submitting a completed application.

When do visiting students register for classes?

Please visit the Visiting Student page to review our visiting student application dates.

How much do classes cost?

The listing of tuition and fees can be found on our Billing and Tuition website. Please note that summer undergraduate classes taken at USF’s Hilltop campus in San Francisco are reduced by a third from the cost of tuition during Fall and Spring semesters.

Can a Visiting Student receive financial assistance?

No. USF does not offer financial assistance to visiting students. Visiting students’ home schools may provide aid to students taking classes at another institution.

When must I make payment for tuition?

Information on payment due dates can be found on the Billing & Tuition website. Students who register after the University’s billing date will have to make payment in full in order to register.

How do I pay my bill?

Tuition charges are applied to your account when you register for classes. Students may pay their tuition using online e-check, personal checks, international bank wire transfer, or by signing up for a payment plan. Go to Methods of Payment for more information.

How can Visiting Students residing outside of the Bay Area make a payment prior to registration but after the payment due date?

Visiting students may make a pre-payment in order to register by following instructions for online payment, and selecting "Tuition Prepayment."  For more information visit the Student Enrollment Services page, then click on "Billing and Tuition." Click on "View and Pay" to make your tuition pre-payment. 

Can I live on campus?

Visiting students may only live on campus during the summer session. Visiting summer students must apply through Student Housing and Residential Education.

As a Visiting Student, whom do I see for advising and other related issues?

Visiting students should work with their home institutions on appropriate classes to take. USF’s Office of the University Registrar serves as an overall advisor to visiting students.

I don’t need academic credit. Can I take a class without receiving a grade?

Visiting students can audit classes and will not receive class credit or a grade. The same tuition charges apply for audited classes. Visiting Students should check with the academic department for the course they are interested in auditing to ensure auditing is allowed for that specific class.

Does USF offer classes that I need to get into medical school?

Yes. We offer pre-health classes in biology, chemistry and physics required for medical and other professional health graduate programs.

Can I take a science class without taking the lab? Can I take a science lab without taking the class?

Yes. Approval from the instructor and Dean’s Office is required.

How many classes may I take as a Visiting Student?

Visiting Students may register for up to 18 units in the fall and spring semesters. Intersession is limited to 4 units. We recommend no more than 8 units in the summer.

Are there any restrictions or limits on classes for non-USF students?

Course prerequisites or restrictions (e.g. space limitations, major requirement) apply for both USF and visiting students. If those prerequisites or restrictions are not met additional authorizations are required before a student can register for the class.

How will I know if there are class prerequisites or restrictions?

When you go to the schedule of classes to find a class, the "Class Listing" will include, at the top of each course section listed, under "Sections Found," the class title, number, and section. If you click on this information, you will be taken to "Detailed Class Information." There you will find any restrictions. You will also find information on the capacity in the class.

Can I take a class with prerequisite requirements or other restrictions and how would a register for such a class?

Yes. Access to classes with prerequisites or other requirements require approval from the appropriate faculty, department or dean’s office, and may require supporting documentation such as your transcript or syllabi for pre-requisite courses. Classes that are already full, or have a wait list also require authorization from the school or college and appropriate department. In order to get registered in a restricted class, use the add/drop form to acquire the necessary signatures and bring the completed form to Student Enrollment Services in Lone Mountain. Please note you will need to pay for your classes at the time of registration, if you have not already done so.

If you are attempting to get into a business class that has a restriction or pre-requisite, please contact Deanna Pachinger, Assistant Dean,, for assistance.

How can a visiting student get class prerequisite or restriction waiver approval before registering online?

Students may not register online for classes with prerequisites or restrictions. Access to some classes require approval signatures. Once you’ve completed the add/drop form filled out with the necessary signatures, bring the form to Student Enrollment Services in Lone Mountain. Please note you will need to pay for your classes at the time of registration, if you have not already done so.

What if I need to withdraw from the classes I’m taking? When can I withdraw without a penalty?

The last date to drop a class with a 100% tuition refund can be found in the online class schedule. Refund information will also be listed on your student account statement.

How do I request a transcript?

Requests for official transcripts are made online. Visit our Transcript website for further information.

Will my USF credits transfer to other institutions?

Visiting students should confirm with their home institution whether classes taken at USF will transfer to their degree program.

Where do I purchase books for my classes?

Class information in the class schedule includes a link with information on required books, and options to buy online. Students may also purchase books at the USF bookstore in the University Center 1st Floor.

More Questions?

If you have additional questions regarding visiting student information, please email An admission or registrar representative will respond as quickly as possible.