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Policy

GCAC-305 Admission Requirements for International Students

Procedure

As outlined in P2 - Determining Academic Eligibility for Admission of International Students – Academic Credentials, Graduate Enrollment Services admission coordinators review applications for eligibility criteria.

A program offer of admission should not be made if eligibility is in question due to low or missing official TOEFL/IELTS scores.  If while reviewing the application, an admission coordinator determines that a score is missing or deficient a note will be added to GRADS.  Not every application is reviewed prior to the graduate program review so it is important for graduate program faculty and staff to be mindful of the policy.

  1. If the program wants to proceed with admission, the program must take the action(s) as described in the following scenarios:
  1. If the applicant only provided self-reported scores, the program must contact the applicant to request official scores be sent to the Graduate School by the testing agency.
  1. If the applicant’s scores do not meet the minimum eligibility standards, including the standards set for provisional admission, the program must contact the applicant to inform them that retaking the exam and attainment of the requisite score will be necessary for admission.
  1. If the applicant has attained marginal scores on the TOEFL or IELTS that meet the standards set in GCAC-305 for provisional admission, the program must submit a request for provisional admission through the Graduate Request Management System (GRMS). The GRMS approval will outline the requirements the student will have to complete to have the provision removed. The program is responsible for conveying these requirements to the applicant. Typically, the student will need to complete a remedial English course(s) with a grade of B or better in their first semester of enrollment according to the following scenarios:
    • Applicants with an overall TOEFL score of 80 or higher and a 16, 17, or 18 on the speaking section must complete ESL 114G (American Oral English for Academic Purposes).
    • Applicants with a TOEFL score of 76, 77, 78 or 79 and a 19 or greater on the speaking section must complete ESL 114G or ESL 116G (ESL/Composition for Academic Disciplines) depending upon sub score results.
    • Applicants with an IELTS composite score of 6 must complete 114G (American Oral English for Academic Purposes) and/or ESL 116G (ESL/Composition for Academic Disciplines) depending upon sub score results.
  1. Exceptions may be requested under certain pre-defined circumstances; further information on English proficiency exceptions can be found for graduate programs on the internal Graduate School Resource Portal.
  1. If the program does not support admission or it has been determined that the applicant does not meet English Proficiency requirements, Graduate Enrollment Services updates GRADS and notifies the applicant of the ineligibility by electronic mail.

Revision History

Approved by The Graduate School, May 6, 2024

Approved by The Graduate School, Feb. 12, 2020

This page was generated on June 16, 2024 at 4:59 PM local time. This may not be the most recent version of this page. Check the Penn State Graduate School website for updates.