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P-M

ACADEMY ADMISSIONS

PRE-MASTER'S PROGRAM

Gain admission to one of USC’s highly selective master's programs while improving your language proficiency, academic skills, test scores, and potential for success.
WHO IS THIS PROGRAM FOR?

Outstanding international students who want to pursue graduate studies at USC, but may have not taken the TOEFL, IELTS, GRE or GMAT (or whose scores don’t meet requirements for direct admission to USC).

WHAT ARE THE MINIMUM ENTRY REQUIREMENTS?
  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Cumulative 3.0 GPA
  • High-intermediate English level
ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Admission requirements vary depending on your master’s degree program of interest. See the list of participating USC master’s programs for information on each program’s minimum TOEFL/IELTS and GPA requirement for Pre-Master’s students.
ACADEMIC BACKGROUND

In order to qualify for admission, Pre-Master’s applicants must have earned a Bachelor’s degree that is recognized by their home country’s Ministry of Education and is equivalent to a four-year U.S. bachelor’s degree.

A cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 U.S. grading scale is also required, though some master’s programs require a higher cumulative GPA.

To check if you are an academically viable candidate for admission, please carefully review the website of your master’s program of interest.

ENGLISH PROFICIENCY

Pre-Master’s applicants must have at least a high-intermediate level of English to be considered for admission. Depending on your chosen degree program, this is equivalent to:

  • TOEFL iBT 75+ / IELTS 6

OR

  • TOEFL iBT 61+ / IELTS 5.5

If you have not taken the TOEFL or IELTS, you will be required to take International Academy’s English Proficiency Exam at one of USC’s international offices to help determine a study plan right for you.

Meeting minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to any USC degree program
Applicants with scores of TOEFL iBT 61+/IELTS 5.5 OR TOEFL iBT 51+/IELTS 5 (depending on the minimum requirements of your chosen master’s program) can apply and be enrolled in gateway courses before progressing to the Pre-Master’s program.
DURATION OF STUDY
To help you understand this chart, first find your USC master’s degree of interest on the Participating Master’s Programs page and check its Pre-Master’s English proficiency requirement.
If your master’s program has a minimum Pre-Master's English requirement of…
… and upon applying
you have a score of…
… you will be required to study in the
Pre-Master’s Program for:
TOEFL iBT 75 / IELTS 6
TOEFL iBT 85+
IELTS 6.5
TOEFL iBT 75
IELTS 6
1 Semester
(4 months)
2 Semesters
(8 months)
TOEFL iBT 61 / IELTS 5.5
TOEFL iBT 75+
IELTS 6
TOEFL iBT 61
IELTS 5.5
1 Semester
(4 months)
2 Semesters
(8 months)

Note: All students will be given a placement exam upon arrival which will confirm the number of semesters you are required to take.

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DATES AND COSTS
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PROGRAM DATES

Each semester is 14-15 weeks long (approximately 4 months) and takes place in the fall, spring, and summer.

2017
Spring Semester:      January 11, 2017 – April 21, 2017
Summer Semester:   April 27, 2017 – August 4, 2017
Fall Semester:            September 5, 2017 – December 15, 2017

 

2018
Spring Semester:       January 10, 2018 – April 20, 2018
APPLICATION DEADLINES

 

Fall 2017 Application Deadline:
Round 1: June 23, 2017
Round 2: July 7, 2017

Priority consideration will be given to students who apply by the Round 1 deadline. Students are advised to apply as early as possible.

PROGRAM COST (PER SEMESTER)

Program Fee:     $10,000 USD
University Service Fee:     $950 USD

The required university service fee covers the cost of textbooks and materials, health insurance, access to campus facilities (medical center, gym, computer labs, & more), airport shuttle transportation, and FedEx mailing of immigration documents.

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HOW TO APPLY
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STEP 1: COMPLETE THE ONLINE APPLICATION.

To begin the process, please go to USC’s online application system and create an account. When applying, you may select the Pre-Master’s Program under “Certificate” in the Program Level and “International Academy” as the School.

STEP 2: PREPARE SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS.
  • Official transcripts*
  • Financial Statement*
  • Copy of your passport page*
  • Copy of English language test results (TOEFL/IELTS,if available)
  • Copy of your bachelor’s degree diploma (if you have already graduated)
  • CV (if applicable)

*required

STEP 3: PAY APPLICATION PROCESSING FEE.

The total application fee is $175 USD and is non-refundable. The fee is paid online when you submit your application.

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SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS

All supporting documents should be uploaded to the Supporting Documents section of the online application system. If you are experiencing problems uploading documents, please email us for further instructions: iapm@usc.edu

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OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS

You must submit academic transcripts from all colleges, universities, and post-secondary institutions you have previously attended. If you have not yet completed your bachelor’s degree, submit transcripts showing completion of at least six semesters of coursework.

Official transcripts must show all courses and subjects taken and all grades (marks) received.

IMPORTANT: If the language of instruction at your institution was not English, then you must provide:

  • Original-language copies of all transcripts and diplomas/academic certificates.
  • A separate, word-for-word, English-language translation of all academic records you submit to us. The translation should either come directly from the school itself or a professional, certified translator. It must contain all information shown on the original-language documents and “mirror” them as precisely as possible. Dual-language transcripts are acceptable.

If admitted, please bring hard-copies of your official transcripts with you to USC International Academy. For more details on preparing for your arrival, please visit our Before You Arrive page.

FINANCIAL STATEMENT

The United States government requires all international applicants to provide proof of ability to pay tuition and living expenses before a formal letter of admission or the forms needed for obtaining a visa can be issued.

Your financial statement must show a minimum available balance of:

  • One semester – $17,264 USD
  • Two semesters – $34,528 USD

This amount would be enough for all of your educational and living expenses.

One of the following is required for your financial statement:

  • A current personal bank statement or letter from your bank
  • A bank statement from your parent, guardian, employer or sponsor PLUS a current letter of support
  • A scholarship letter from your government or sponsoring organization

Please note that the name on these documents must be written in English.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE TEST RESULTS (TOEFL/IELTS)

If you have taken the TOEFL or IELTS exam, please enter your scores directly to the online application system. Scores must be dated no earlier than 2 years (24 months) prior to the start date of your intended first term at the Pre-Master’s Program to be considered valid.

If you do not have a valid TOEFL or IELTS score, you will be required to take the Academy’s English Proficiency Exam at one of USC’s international offices. One of our Admissions Officers will contact you to schedule an exam date upon receipt of your complete application.

CONFIRMING YOUR ADMISSION

Application processing takes on average 6-8 weeks after we receive your completed application. If your eligibility to the Pre-Master’s Program is approved, you will receive notification by email that includes an acceptance letter by USC International Academy. The letter includes some details about your study plan, including your start date options.

To secure your space in the Pre-Master’s Program, you must confirm your intent to enroll online and pay the $2500 tuition deposit within 30 days of receiving your admission decision. After you confirm your enrollment and pay the deposit, we will mail you a Welcome Packet that includes the Form I-20.

  1. Receive acceptance letter from USC International Academy
  2. Declare your intent to enroll by paying $2500 deposit
  3. Receive Welcome Packet (includes Form I-20) by mail