F-1 International Student Admission Requirements

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International Student Admission Requirements (F-1 Visa)

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Application Deadlines

High school graduates, ESL (English as a Second Language) students and college/university transfer students planning to attend Hillsborough Community College (HCC) on an F-1 visa need to apply by the following deadlines:
Term Initial F-1 Students Transfer F-1 Students
Fall (August-December) June 15 July 15
Spring (January-May) November 1 November 15
Summer (May-August) March 15 April 15
Students entering the United States on an initial F-1 student visa should begin the application process at least three months prior to the start term to allow for visa processing and arrange personal and academic affairs upon arrival.

Application Requirements

  1. Apply Online at international.hccfl.edu! Complete the International Student Application (Initial or Transfer Student). Upload all required documents in your application. Incomplete or inaccurate information will delay the processing of your application.   
  2. $50 Application and Processing Fee (non-refundable). The fee may be paid by:
    • Credit card through HCC’s Payment Gateway at https://www.hccfl.edu/paying-college/payment-information (click on “Pay Online for Health Sciences Application, Testing, Other Fees,” complete the student information and select “International Student Application Fee” under Item Information).
    • Cashier’s/certified bank check, money order (payable to “Hillsborough Community College”), international wire transfer through www.flywire.com, or in person at the campus bursar. Please do not mail cash!
  3. Financial Documents 
    • Affidavit of Financial Support (included in the application) completed and signed by your sponsor.  
    • Current financial document/bank letter. This document must be in English, on official institution letterhead and bear the sponsor’s name. It must be dated within six months of the I-20 program start date and show funding for at least one year of study at HCC (two semesters).  
      • Students with government sponsorships or grants/loans (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, etc.) must submit final, official financial guarantees or current financial documents for admission purposes.
  4. Academic Records
    To be eligible for admission to an associate degree program at HCC, applicants must submit documentation that they have the equivalent of an Associate or higher degree, or a standard high school diploma, or a high school equivalency certificate (GED)
    • High School 
      • If you graduated from a high school in the United States, please request that final, official transcripts be sent to HCC in a sealed envelope or electronically from your high school prior to admission. Transcripts must include your final grades and graduation date.  Opened transcripts are considered to be unofficial and will not be accepted. 
      • If you graduated from a high school outside of the United States, your transcripts, graduation certificates and/or exam results may have to be evaluated by a NACES-approved agency (www.naces.org) to prove equivalency with a U.S. high school diploma (general or document-by-document evaluation) and translated, if documents are not in English. Completed evaluations must be submitted prior to admission.  
      • If you graduated with an International Baccalaureate (IB), final, official IB Diploma Programme results must be submitted directly from International Baccalaureate to the Center for International Education.
    • ‚ÄčCollege/University 
      • Students who attended or are currently attending a U.S. university or college must submit official transcripts prior to admission. Transcripts may be submitted either in a sealed envelope from the institution or electronically. If final, official transcripts have not been received by the I-20 program start date, a review of transfer credit for your first term at HCC can no longer be guaranteed, and you may be required to take the college placement test before enrolling in classes.
      • If you have attended a university or college outside of the U.S., you must submit a course-by-course evaluation of your transcripts by a NACES-approved agency prior to the I-20 program start date for use within the first term. Evaluations may not be submitted at a later time. Acceptance of foreign transfer credit toward degree requirements at HCC is subject to review by the HCC Transcript Office and cannot be guaranteed
  5. Proof of English Proficiency
    Applicants from non-English speaking countries must provide proof of English proficiency for admissions purposes in one of the following ways:* 
  • TOEFL score of 61 (iBT) (www.toefl.org; HCC Institution Code: 5304) 
  • IELTS Academic overall band score of 5.5 or better (www.ielts.org)
  • iTEP Academic score of 4.0 or better (www.itepexam.com)
  • Duolingo English Test score of 90 or higher (https://englishtest.duolingo.com/home
  • Pearson PTE Academic minimum score of 46 or higher
  • Cambridge English: C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency, minimum score of 165 or higher
  • STEP Eiken minimum score of Grade 2A or higher
  • GTEC CBT score of 1051 or higher; new GTEC unified score of 1075 or higher
  • SAT test score of 24 or higher in Reading, or ACT score of 19 or higher in Reading, and 17 or higher in Writing
  • Successful completion of EAP 1851
  • Successful completion of Kaplan High-Intermediate Level
  • Successful completion of Level 4 at INTO USF
  • Successful completion of Academic English - Advanced Levels (Level 109) at an ELS English Language Center
  • Successful completion of Level 6 Advanced at Tampa Language Center
  • Successful completion of Advanced Level 2 at OHLA Open Hearts Language Academy Schools
  • Successful completion of High-Intermediate Level 4 (Elite Certificate) at Oxford Elite Academy
  • Graduation from a U.S. high school with a standard high school diploma after attending that school for at least two years (not including ESOL classes) and attaining a grade of “C” or higher in English
  • Official transcript proving successful completion of ENC 1101 at a regionally accredited post-secondary institution.

*NOTE: All new students, unless exempt, are required to take the college placement test in English and Math to determine course placement. Students may be exempted from the placement test ONLY if they submit proof of successful completion of ENC 1101 or qualifying SAT/ACT scores. Request your official score reports to be mailed directly to the CIE from the College Board (SAT) or the ACT respectively.  Award dates (certificates and diplomas) and scores (TOEFL, IELTS, SAT, ACT, etc.) must be dated within two years of the term start date.  
  1. Copy of your passport’s biography page. The passport must be valid at least six months into the future at all times.
  2. Proof of Health Insurance. All international F-1 students must submit proof of health insurance. Enroll in the HCC-endorsed plan at www.insuranceforstudents.com. Proof of insurance is due before attending the mandatory New Student Orientation!
F-1 STUDENTS TRANSFERRING FROM ANOTHER U.S. INSTITUTION: Also submit a copy of your F-1 visa, current Form I-20 and the electronic Transfer Clearance Form recommendation, completed by your current International Student Advisor.

F-2 VISA HOLDERS: F-2 applicants should submit the following documents by the given admission deadlines to the Center for International Education: Completed online International Student Application, application fee (see #2), transcripts/academic records (see #4), proof of English proficiency (see #5), and a copy of their passport, F-2 visa and current I-20.



Center for International Education
4001 W Tampa Bay Blvd, DSSC 322
Tampa, FL 33614 USA
Phone: 1.813.253.7009
Email: international@hccfl.edu
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