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To receive our counselor newsletter, please join the mailing list. In addition to regular updates, high school counselors on the mailing list will also receive a status report of their students after decisions are released. For more information, you may also view our counselor brochure.

The Admissions Process

We understand that the application process can be a bit confusing and stressful for you and your students. The entire process, from start to finish, requires a great deal of work on the student's part. As you know, no two schools are alike, and what any particular college or university is looking for in a student will vary. Please encourage your students to get a head start in the admission process by checking out various college websites, visiting different schools, attending college fairs, and planning ahead.

If your students are applying to Florida State University, we recommend that they apply as soon as the senior year begins by:

  • Reviewing freshman admission requirements.
  • Creating the Self-reported Student Academic Record (SSAR). To learn about SSAR, click here.
  • Applying online. The undergraduate application is available in August.
  • Submitting official ACT and/or SAT score reports for all tests taken. The ACT college code for Florida State is #0734; the SAT is #5219. If your students did not request test scores be sent to FSU, the scores can be ordered through ACT or SAT. Please let your students know that we will not penalize for multiple tests.
  • Applying for financial aid by submitting the FAFSA, available in October.
  • The 2017 essay should be no longer than 650 words and should address one of the below topics:
    • Describe an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped shape it.
    • Describe a time when you made a meaningful contribution to others in which the greater good was your focus. Discuss the challenges and rewards of making your contribution.
    • Has there been a time when you've had a long-cherished or accepted belief challenged? How did you respond? How did the challenge affect your beliefs?
  • Students applying to the CARE Summer Bridge Program are instead required to respond to the following essay topic:
    • Resiliency shows your ability to adapt and succeed in spite of obstacles or other challenges. In 650 words or less, please give an example of how you were resilient and what you learned from that experience.

If you are in Florida, remind your students to have their parents complete the Florida residency form so that they may qualify for in-state tuition. Please also let them know that the statement does not need to be completed prior to an admission decision; however, it must be on file before the first day of classes. It will have no bearing on our admission decision.

In addition to your students applying for admission to the University, they should be aware that some academic programs have different deadlines and require supporting information and/or auditions. Have your students visit the academic department website if majoring in dance, film (animation or production), music, or theatre.

Please note that letters of recommendation are not required and will not be used in the decision-making process.


All information necessary to make an admission decision must be received by the published deadlines. There are two deadlines and corresponding notification dates for freshmen who apply for either the summer or fall term. The University does not generally accept freshman applications for the spring term.

Applications And All Supporting Documents Received By: Decision Available Online:
October 19, 2016 December 8, 2016
January 18, 2017 March 16, 2017

The University always reserves the right to close freshman admission earlier if warranted by enrollment limitations and the number and quality of applications. We strongly encourage your students to complete their files by our first notification period, so they can receive all of our communications in a timely manner. Housing and financial aid are first come, first served.

Once an application has been submitted, your students will be able to monitor their progress through the Online Status Check (OSC), which is available to applicants 24/7. Applicants may check on the current status of their application. To access the OSC, students will go to and log in with the FSUID and password they created at the time of application. Because the University receives thousands of applications each year, please remind them that it takes time for files to be updated, especially around deadlines.

Many of our communications are sent to them electronically, so when speaking to your students, please remind them to make sure that we always have their most up-to-date email address. As they begin the application process, it may be a good idea for them to create an email address exclusively for the college admission process. To ensure receipt of our emails, they should include in their address book.

ACT/SAT Information

We require freshman applicants to submit at least one ACT and/or SAT test score to be considered for admission. Beginning with applications for 2017, Florida State no longer requires the optional ACT writing score or the optional SAT essay. We encourage applicants to take both the ACT and SAT, and to attempt each exam more than one time to earn the highest possible score.

In March of 2016, the College Board launched the redesigned SAT. Information about this and other changes to the test can be found on the College Board website. Students applying for 2017 admission can submit old and new SAT scores.

When evaluating students for admission, we use the highest earned ACT and SAT sub scores to calculate the ACT composite and/or SAT total (a process known as "super scoring"). Due to the scoring differences between the old, three-part, and new, two-part, versions of the SAT, FSU will calculate separate super scores for each version of the exam.

The January SAT and February ACT are the latest tests that we will use in the admission process for applicants applying for the summer or fall term.

Both ACT and the College Board now offer test preparation programs. ACT has partnered with Kaplan Test Prep and will offer an ACT preparation program at no cost to low-income students and to all students at a significantly lower cost than traditional prep programs. The College Board has partnered with the Khan Academy and offers free, personalized SAT practice based on the student's PSAT/SAT test results students and to all students at a significantly lower cost than traditional prep programs.

Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success

Florida State University is a member of the Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success, a consortium of 90+ public and private universities in the U.S. that have come together to offer a new college planning and application platform. The Coalition platform will allow high school students to set up an account and begin learning about the application and the financial aid process as early as the ninth grade. The platform includes three main features: a Virtual Locker where the student can collect and store information that maybe useful when they apply to college; a Collaboration Platform where teachers, counselors, employers, and mentors who are supporting the student's college search can offer feedback; and finally, an Application Portal where the student can select information from their virtual locker that they would like to include with their application to Coalition member universities.

Florida State University will continue to use its institutional online application for 2017 admission. We expect to be able to accept the Coalition application starting August 2017.


2016-2017 Undergraduate Costs Graphic

Undergraduate Costs 2016-2017

Estimated costs cover two semesters
(15 hours per semester)

Florida Residents
Non-Florida Residents
$ 6,516
$ 21,683
$ 6,550
$ 6,550
Food (Meal Plan)2
$ 3,998
$ 3,998
$ 1,000
$ 1,000
$ 18,064
$ 33,231
Health Insurance3
$ 2,262
$ 2,262
$ 20,326
$ 35,493

1 Click here for rental rates by residence hall.

2 Click here for the various meal plan options and the associated costs.

3 FSU has a mandatory health insurance policy for new students admitted to the University. The cost represents the annual individual premium for domestic students. (The premium for international students is $2,266.) Costs of meeting this requirement will be included in financial aid considerations. Students who currently have health insurance may show proof of comparable coverage and may not be required to purchase the University policy. Refer to for additional information.

University Admission Scholarships

University Freshman Scholarship
Accepted freshmen will be automatically consider for our University Freshman scholarship. A separate application is not required. Scholarships are competitive and awarded based on academic merit (combination of cumulative grade point average AND test scores). The award is $9,600 distributed over four years. Students admitted in December will have priority consideration.

Presidential Scholar Scholarship
Accepted freshmen that have received the University Freshman Scholarship are eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholar Scholarship. The scholarship application deadline is January 25th, 2017. Students selected for the Presidential Scholars award will receive the $9,600 University Freshman Scholarship plus a separate $9,600 Presidential Scholarship, both distributed over four years. An additional $12,000 will be granted for educational enrichment opportunities. The total value of this scholarship is $31,200 over four years. Out-of-state applicants will also receive a full out-of-state tuition waiver. Detailed information about this scholarship can be found at

Benacquisto Scholarship (formerly Florida Incentive Scholarship Program)
This prestigious scholarship is available to National Merit Finalists that are Florida residents graduating with a Florida standard high school diploma or the equivalent. This award equals the institutional cost of attendance (minus the sum of Bright Futures and the National Merit scholarship). The total value of this scholarship is over $80,000 over four years and guarantees admission into FSU's University Honors Program.

National Merit Finalist Scholarship
This scholarship is available to non-Florida residents listing FSU as their first choice with the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. The award includes a waiver of the out-of-state portion of the tuition cost, the $9,600 University Freshman Scholarship and the national merit scholarship. The total value of this scholarship is over $69,000 over four years and guarantees admission into FSU's University Honors Program.

Tuition Waiver Scholarship

Full Out-of-State Tuition Waiver
Awarded to a limited number of non-Florida freshmen based on academic merit. The total amount of this award is a 100% waiver of the out-of-state portion of tuition cost (approximately $14,444 based on 30 semester hours for the academic year). The waiver amount is only applied toward the tuition cost and does not include other fees, nor can it be used for a study-abroad program.

Partial Out-of-State Tuition Waiver
Awarded to a limited number of non-Florida freshmen based on academic merit or special talent. The total amount of this award is a 50% waiver of the out-of-state portion of tuition cost (approximately $7,222 based on 30 semester hours for the academic year). The waiver amount is only applied toward tuition cost and does not include other fees, nor can it be used for a study-abroad program.

Frequently Asked Questions

Other Scholarships/Financial Assistance

To ensure the greatest likelihood of receiving financial support to attend Florida State University, your students should apply early for admission and financial aid. The Office of Financial Aid awards assistance each year to eligible students in the form of scholarships, grants, work-study, and loans. Additionally, Florida State has resources that can help your students find private sources of aid to attend college. In order to apply for need-based financial aid, applicants must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the appropriate academic year. To begin researching scholarships, your students might start in their own school or community library. They should also check out local civic organizations and businesses to see if they currently offer any scholarships. Beyond the local level, they can search through several Internet scholarship search programs.

Below are other avenues they can consider when researching scholarship opportunities.

  • Air Force, Army, and Navy ROTC Scholarships
    The military offers various scholarship programs for students who are interested in attending college and serving their country through the Armed Forces. For more information, please call the Air Force (850.644.3461), the Army (850.644.1016), or the Navy (850.599.3989) for details.
  • Athletic Scholarships
    Available to men and women who represent the University in intercollegiate sporting events. It is highly recommended that the student's high school coach contact the Athletic Department at Florida State.
  • Florida State Service Scholar Program
    Renewable scholarships for entering freshman and returning students who have a distinguished record of community involvement and a desire to continue to learn through service. Refer to the Center for Leadership and Social Change website for more information.
  • Talent Scholarships
    Offered in the areas of Music, Dance, and Theatre to both freshmen and transfers. Consideration for these awards is based upon auditions. Additional information can be obtained directly from the individual academic departments.
  • Southern Scholarship Foundation (SSF)
    The Southern Scholarship Foundation was established to provide outstanding students needing financial assistance with an opportunity to obtain a college education. The Foundation provides rent-free housing to deserving students in a cooperative living environment. The SSF currently operates 14 scholarship houses at Florida State University. Additional information can be obtained from the SSF, 322 Stadium Drive, Tallahassee, FL 32304, or by calling 850.222.3833.
  • Florida's Bright Futures Scholarship Program
    The Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program for Florida residents is the umbrella program for all state-funded scholarships based on academic achievement in high school. Applications and information regarding eligibility and renewal criteria for the various programs can be obtained from any Florida high school guidance office or by contacting the Florida Department of Education at 1.888.827.2004.
  • Other Scholarships
    The Florida State University Office of Financial Aid website contains information on various other types of scholarships.

Financial Aid

The Office of Financial Aid at Florida State exists to assist students with securing federal, state, and institutional financial aid to achieve their degree. Each year, they award and administer more than 350 million dollars in financial aid to eligible students. Students receive aid in the form of scholarships, grants, work study, and loans - funds that help them to focus on their education and complete their degree.

Here are some hints to make the financial aid process go smoothly for your students:

Apply early for:

  • Financial Aid - Beginning with the 2017-2018 FAFSA, the White House will allow students to file the FAFSA using prior-prior year (PPY) tax data. As a result of this change, the soonest that you can submit the FAFSA for the 2017-2018 academic year is October 1of 2016. (Summer applicants must submit a FAFSA for 2016-2017 and 2017-2018.) The FAFSA is available online. The institution code for Florida State University is 001489. Review the FAFSA Changes Fact Sheet for more information.
  • Admission - Once the Office of Financial Aid has received financial aid data from the federal government, they can make an award — unless your student hasn't been admitted to the University.

The FAFSA is available online. The institution code for Florida State University is 001489.

Keep up with the paperwork! Once the FAFSA is processed by the government, your students will be sent a document called a Student Aid Report (SAR). It's important that they check their SAR for accuracy, because that's the data Florida State will use in determining their eligibility for need-based aid.

Changes to the FAFSA Process for 2017-18

Much like our discussion of basic costs, it is important to compare financial aid packages very carefully. Remind your students and their parents to not be fooled by the package offering the most overall dollars. Instead, they should figure out their total out-of-pocket cost, including future loan repayments.

Division of Undergraduate Studies

Most of your students will begin their academic careers within the Division of Undergraduate Studies. All of the various offices within this Division, from Honors to CARE, work to assist your students with their academic careers, ensuring that they develop sound academic preparation for their major field of study.

Choosing a Major at Florida State University

As you know, studies have found that most college students will change their majors at least once before they graduate. What can you do to help your students identify the majors and career paths that are right for them? Suggest they read "Choosing a Major at Florida State University" and feel free to include this guide in your Career and College Placement Offices. It's filled with helpful websites, exercises, and activities designed to help students identify a major that will meet their career goals.

Degree Programs

Most of our baccalaureate degree programs require 120 semester hours of specific earned credit to graduate. While there are many ways to accumulate the 120 hours, the original concept is still the same...for students to earn 15 semester hours per term, for two terms each year, for a total of four years.

With this goal in mind, we provide our students with all of the necessary resources to graduate on time, including an academic map of their major. The Academic Program Guide provides you and your students with a detailed program description of each degree (including contact information), an eight-semester plan for graduation (the student's academic map), and a link to the degree program's website.

Accelerated Credit

Up to 45 semester hours of credit can be awarded by taking AICE, AP, IB, or CLEP tests and achieving appropriate scores. To receive credit, official test scores must be sent directly to the Office of Admissions. Credit will be awarded only once for the same subject, whether from credit by examination, dual enrollment, transfer credit, or FSU course credit. Credit awarded for dual enrollment or transfer courses takes precedence over credit by examination.

Students enrolled in college coursework prior to graduation from high school (dual enrollment) may be awarded college credit. An official college transcript will be required for the posting of credit. We will not post college credit from a high school transcript.

Study Abroad Opportunities

Florida State University's International Programs (FSU IP) is consistently ranked in the top 15 of U.S. universities in the number of students who study abroad. Every year we send approximately 1,600 students across the world to study in our multiple locations.

FSU IP offers two freshman programs, First Year Abroad (FYA) and First Semester Abroad (FSA) that may be of interest to your students. The FYA program allows students to complete the first twelve months of their Florida State careers studying abroad at any of their study centers in London, England; Florence, Italy; Panama City, Republic of Panama; and Valencia, Spain. Upon completion of this year abroad, FYA students who are non-Florida residents for tuition purposes may be assessed in-state tuition rates for the remainder of their first undergraduate degree on the FSU main campus. The FSA program allows our freshman applicants who were offered Spring (January) admission the opportunity to begin their studies in the Fall studying at one of the IP study centers.

Accepted Students

As the counselor of newly admitted Florida State students, we want you to also have the most up-to-date enrollment information so you will know what to expect and how to advise. However, if you have any questions along the way, don't hesitate to contact us. We want you and your students to be as informed as possible.

After admission, it is important to apply for on-campus housing as soon as possible. Historically, we have not had room to house all of our freshmen on campus, so the earlier your students apply, the greater the odds of being able to live on campus in the residence hall of choice. They should not delay submitting the housing contract, even if they are not certain Florida State will be their final choice. If they decide not to enroll, all but $50 of the $225 pre-payment is refundable if they decline admission by May 1.

After your students apply for housing, the next time-sensitive decision involves paying the enrollment deposit. Florida State, as well as most selective schools, requires an enrollment deposit to be paid to the University by May 1 to reserve the student's place in our freshman class. It can be paid at any time prior to May 1, but please remind your students and their parents that it is non-refundable! Since most students are considering many schools, they can wait until May 1 to pay the deposit. If they do not pay the enrollment deposit by May 1, their admission offer will be withdrawn. Your students can pay the admission deposit by accessing the online status featureadmission deposit by accessing the online status check of their application.

After the deposit has been paid, your students must also sign up for Orientation by May 1. Orientation is a mandatory program for new students designed to familiarize them with our University and our many activities and programs. During Orientation, they will meet with an academic adviser and register for classes. Parents will be invited to participate in a family program which runs concurrently with, but separate from, the student orientation.

Preview is a series of special visitation days for students who have been admitted to the University. Visit the Preview website for more information.

Your students' final high school transcripts and official college/university transcript(s) if dual enrolled, must be received in our office no later than mid-July (students should refer to their conditions of admission found in the Enrollment Information section of their Online Status Check).