Jul 21, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
    
2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Admissions


 


 

Northwest Florida State College (NWFSC) is an open-door institution that admits high school graduates or GED certificate holders. However, some programs may require additional admissions criteria or have a selective admissions process. All applicants must complete the online NWFSC Admissions Application. An applicant is limited to one application per semester. If an applicant needs to make any changes to the application, they must complete the Request for Exception: Admissions Form. Upon admission, the student is bound to the program requirements outlined in the College Catalog in effect for the semester of admission. If the applicant fails to enroll during the semester of their initial admission, they will be required to complete a new Admissions Application for a future semester. 

Get Started

  1. It’s FREE to apply to NWFSC! Apply online at www.nwfsc.edu/admissions.
  2. Submit proof of high school completion:
    • A final high school transcript showing your graduation date
    • GED transcript showing your completion date
    • Affidavit of Home School Completion (the affidavit must be notarized; please see affidavit for specific information outlining required supporting documentation)
    • Note: Proof of high school completion must be received prior to the start of the semester of admission; if applicable documentation is not received, a registration hold will be placed on the student’s account that will prohibit all registration activity until it is received.
  • Official transcripts (including military transcripts such as Community College of the Air Force and the Joint Services Transcript) are not required for General College Admissions for Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 but must be submitted for students to receive credit for prior post-secondary work completed. It is the student’s responsibility to submit official transcripts for evaluation prior to advising and/or registration. Students may not receive a refund for a course they choose to take at NWFSC if they subsequently receive transfer credit for that same course but failed to submit all transcripts prior to advising and registration.
    • Beginning Summer 2024: All official transcripts will be required prior to the second semester of enrollment. If transcripts are not received by the end of the first semester of attendance, a registration hold will be placed on the student’s account that will prohibit all registration activity until received.
  • Official transcripts from every post-secondary institution attended may be required for those programs with additional admissions criteria and/or a selective admission process. Applicants should review their intended program’s specific admission requirements prior to applying.
  • Send official transcripts to Northwest Florida State College, Office of Academic Records and Enrollment, 100 College Blvd. East, Niceville, FL 32578. Electronic transcripts may be sent to registrar@nwfsc.edu, but are only accepted if sent by a secure third-party provider (i.e., Clearinghouse, Parchment, etc.; transcripts from a personal email account will not be accepted). Students should contact their prior institution for assistance with requesting their official transcript.

 4. Official score reports from national testing agencies such as ACT, SAT, AP, CLEP, DANTES, or AICE are not required but must be submitted to receive course credit and/or meet pre-requisite requirements. It is the student’s responsibility to submit official score reports for evaluation prior to advising and/or registration. Students may not receive a refund for a course they choose to take at NWFSC if they subsequently receive credit-by-exam for that same course but failed to submit all score reports prior to advising or registration. Students should contact their testing agency to request their official score reports.

  • Send official score reports to Northwest Florida State College, Office of Academic Records and Enrollment, 100 College Blvd. East, Niceville, FL 32578. Electronic score reports may be sent to registrar@nwfsc.edu, but are only accepted if sent by a secure third-party provider (i.e., Clearinghouse, Parchment, etc.; score reports from a personal email account will not be accepted). Students should contact their prior institution to request their official score reports.

Each applicant will be notified by email of their admission status to the College. Once admitted, students are assigned an NWFSC student email account and student identification number. The student is expected to provide their student identification number to assist in verifying their identity when discussing any information related to their education record here at the College. The NWFSC student email account serves as the official method of communication to the student from the College. The student will be expected to use this email account when communicating electronically with the College. The NWFSC student email account serves as the official method of communication to the student from the College. The student will be expected to use this email account when communicating electronically with the College.
For Financial Aid Students Only: Until NWFSC receives and evaluates official copies of all transcripts, you will not be eligible to receive financial aid or scholarships.

Re-Admission

An application is good for one semester. A student who is admitted but does not enroll within that semester must re-apply. In addition, a student who has previously attended NWFSC, but who has not been in attendance within one year (3 semesters) must re-apply to update personal data, verify their intended program of study, and declare their current residency status. The student will complete program requirements under the catalog in effect for the term of re-admission.

In compliance with our Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Defense, DoD Instruction 1322.25, and NWFSC Board of Trustees Policy SS 7.00, service members shall be readmitted to a program with the same academic status as they had when last attending the school or accepted for admission to the school if they are temporarily unable to attend class or have to suspend their studies due to service requirements.

The student must notify the school of their military service and intention to return to school as follows:

  • Notification of military service. The student must give oral or written notice of such service to the school as far in advance as is reasonable under the circumstances. This notice does not have to indicate whether the student intends to return to the school and may not be subject to any rule of timeliness. (Timeliness must be determined by the facts in each case.) Alternatively, at the time of re-admission, the student may submit an attestation of military service that necessitated the absence from school. No notice is required if precluded by military necessity, such as service in operations that are classified or would be compromised by such notice.
  • Notification of intent to return to school. The student must also give oral or written notice of their intent to return to the school within three years after the completion of the period of service. A student who is hospitalized or convalescing due to an illness or injury incurred or aggravated during the performance of service must notify the school within two years after the end of the period needed for recovery from the illness or injury. A student who fails to apply for re-admission within these periods does not automatically forfeit eligibility for re-admission but is subject to the school’s established leave of absence policy and general practices.

Contact the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment at registrar@nwfsc.edu for more details.

Transfer Students

A student who has attended another college or university before enrolling at NWFSC in a degree program is considered a transfer student, regardless of the grades received or the transferability of the courses attempted.

Official transcripts (including military transcripts such as Community College of the Air Force and the Joint Services Transcript) are not required for General College Admissions for Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 but must be submitted for students to receive credit for prior post-secondary work completed. It is the student’s responsibility to submit official transcripts for evaluation prior to advising and registration. Students may not receive a refund for a course they choose to take at NWFSC if they subsequently receive transfer credit for that same course but failed to submit all transcripts prior to advising and/or registration.

  • Beginning Summer 2024: All official transcripts will be required prior to the second semester of enrollment. If transcripts are not received by the end of the first semester of attendance, a registration hold will be placed on the student’s account that will prohibit all registration activity until received.

Official transcripts from every post-secondary institution attended may be required for those programs with additional admissions criteria and/or a selective admission process. Applicants should review their intended program’s specific admission requirements prior to applying.

Admission to the A.A. Degree Program

Students who have already received an A.A. from another institution are not eligible for admission into the A.A. degree program at NWFSC. Students who are initially admitted into the A.A. degree program but are subsequently discovered to have already received an A.A. degree will be switched to Non-Degree Seeking status and instructed to either re-apply to the College or submit a Update My Application Form as applicable to each student’s specific situation.  

Admission to an A.S. Program with a Companion Certification

Many of the college credit certificate programs offered by NWFSC provide the initial step in meeting selected course requirements for an A.S. degree in a related area. Courses from those certificates are the same as or equivalent to comparable courses in the companion degree program. Likewise, courses used in the degree program may be applied to a certificate in a related area; in many cases, completion of courses in the degree program can automatically qualify the student to receive the companion certificate. To ensure that students receive every credential earned here at NWFSC, students who are admitted to an A.S. degree that contains a companion certificate will automatically have that certificate added to their program of study at the time of admission. This will ensure that once the student has met all course requirements for the companion certificate, they will be reviewed during the auto-graduation process. Students who have met all the requirements for a certificate will automatically be awarded the applicable credential at the end of the semester in which all certificate requirements have been fulfilled.

Certificate Admission Requirements (CCC or CCP)

An applicant for admission to either the College Credit Certificate (CCC) or Career Certificate Programs (CCP) may be accepted to the College but should review selective admissions process*.

*If the CCC or CCP program is a selective admissions program, transcripts from previous post-secondary institutions may be required as part of the selective admissions process.  

Applied Technology Diploma (ATD) Admission Requirements

An applicant for admission to an Applied Technology Diploma (ATD) program must be a high school graduate or GED holder and submit one of the documents as described above as part of the application. Transcripts from previous post-secondary institutions are not required for admission but must be submitted if the student is seeking any type of transfer credit for previous college or university coursework successfully completed. *

*If the ATD program is a selective admissions program, transcripts from previous post-secondary institutions may be required as part of the selective admissions process.  

 

Baccalaureate Degree Admission Requirements

NWFSC is approved by the State of Florida Board of Education to offer baccalaureate degrees. NWFSC offers the Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.S.), Bachelor of Science in Education (B.S.E.), and Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) degree programs. All bachelor’s degree programs are designed to provide a career ladder for those who have already completed an associate degree (or 60 transferable credits for the B.A.S. and B.S.E. degrees). All bachelor’s degree applicants must complete the NWFSC Admissions Application. Students who do not have an associate degree (or 60 transferable credits for the B.A.S. and B.S.E. degrees) are not eligible to apply and should speak with a Student Success Navigator to determine the appropriate program in which the student may be eligible. Students may call (850) 502-2895 or email studentsuccess@nwfsc.edu to speak with a Student Success Navigator.

Bachelor of Applied Science in Project Management
Bachelor of Applied Science in Management and Supervision

An applicant for admission to the Bachelor of Applied Science in Project Management or the Bachelor of Applied Science in Management and Supervision degree program may be admitted with the following:

  • Completion of NWFSC Admission Requirements as outlined for the A.A., A.A.S., and A.S. degree programs.
  • Completion of 60 transferable credits. Students who have completed an A.A. degree may be asked to complete additional credits in a professional area (e.g., accounting, computer science, general business, etc.) in lieu of the additional general education credits required of the A.S. and A.A.S. students.
  • Completion of all developmental coursework.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

An applicant for admission to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) degree program may be admitted with the following:

  • Completion of NWFSC Admission Requirements as outlined for the A.A., A.A.S., and A.S. degree programs.
  • Completion of an associate in science degree in nursing (A.S.N.) or a nursing diploma program prior to enrollment.
  • Completion of all developmental coursework.
  • Documentation of a clear and active R.N. License. Recent graduates of nursing programs who have not yet obtained an R.N. License may apply and may be accepted on a conditional basis for one semester and may not take courses that include experiential learning components. The conditional status will be removed once the student provides a copy of their R.N. License.
  • Documentation of a grade point average (GPA) of 2.75 or higher in all college credit coursework and a grade of “C” or higher in all courses (core and General Education) applicable to the R.N. to B.S.N. degree program. Depending on program capacity, students with less than a 2.75 GPA may be admitted on a provisional basis. However, in all cases, the student must have earned a “C” or higher in all courses needed for the B.S.N. degree. Provisional status will be removed if the student earns a GPA of 3.0 or higher for their first eight upper-division nursing credits at the College. If this benchmark is not met, the student will not be permitted to continue in the R.N. to B.S.N. degree program. Ideally, pre-requisite and General Education courses should be completed prior to enrolling in upper-division nursing courses; however, all pre-requisite and General Education courses must be completed before the student can take NUR 4615C and subsequent B.S.N. courses.

Contact the B.S.N. Department at (850) 729-6444 for additional information.

Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education

An applicant for admission to the Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education degree program may be admitted with the following:

  • Completion of NWFSC Admission Requirements as outlined for the A.A., A.A.S., and A.S. degree programs.
  • Completion of an A.A. or A.S. degree from a regionally accredited college or university, or at least 60 transferable credits of post-secondary education from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • Completion of all developmental coursework.
  • Completion of all General Education Requirements and the lower-division state-mandated common pre-requisite with a minimum grade of “C” in the pre-requisite course.
  • A minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale for the General Education component of the undergraduate studies or have completed the requirements for a baccalaureate degree with a minimum Cumulative GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale from an approved college or university.
  • Agreement to submit to background checks by both the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth through Four

An applicant for the Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education may be admitted with the following:

  • Completion of NWFSC Admission Requirements as outlined for the A.A., A.A.S., and A.S. degree programs.
  • Completion of an A.A. or A.S. degree from a regionally accredited college or university, or at least 60 transferable credits of post-secondary education from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • Completion of all developmental coursework and a minimum of 18 credit hours of transferable General Education courses.
  • Completion of state-mandated prerequisites with a minimum grade of “C”.
  • A minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Agreement to submit to fingerprinting as required by Early Childhood facilities.

 

Selective Program Admissions

Selective programs are those programs that have limited slots, a competitive selection process, and may require additional Admission Requirements. The following programs are selective admissions programs:

  • •    Aviation Airframe Mechanics
    •    Aviation Powerplant Mechanics
    •    Criminal Justice Training Programs
    •    Emergency Medical Services
    •    Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)
    •    Firefighting
    •    Firefighter/EMT-Combined
    •    Medical Laboratory Technology
    •    Nursing A.S./R.N.
    •    Paramedic
    •    Physical Therapist Assistant
    •    Radiography
    •    Welding

Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)

The Emergency Medical Technician program is approved by the Florida Department of Health.  Emergency Medical Technicians are part of the Emergency Medical Services team. EMTs are trained to provide basic life support and transportation of the sick and injured. The EMT program prepares students to apply for the examination to become a Florida licensed and National Registry Emergency Medical Technician-Basic.

The Emergency Medical Technician program is 300 clock-hour program and is conducted over one (1) semester. Applicants to this program must have a high school diploma or its equivalent and meet other applicable Admission criteria (including fingerprinting, a background check, and a drug screen). Contact the Public Safety Office at publicsafety@nwfsc.edu or (850) 729-5378 for additional information.

Firefighting

Firefighters are trained to extinguish and control fires in response to situations where property, life, or the environment is in danger.  At the scene of an emergency, firefighters perform tasks assigned by their commanding officer.  Depending on the situation, they may need to provide medical attention, break through debris, operate fire hoses, or enter a burning building.  Firefighters are often first responders to car accidents, heart attack scenes, and other medical emergencies that do not involve fire. 

The Firefighting Certificate program is one (1) semester that consists of two classes: Fire Basic I and II.  Applicants to this program must have a high school diploma or its equivalent and meet other applicable Admission criteria. Prior to admission to the program, all applicants must 1) earn a Postsecondary Education Readiness (PERT) score that demonstrates college readiness (score information)  or 2) pass Tests of Adult Basic Education (TABE) with a completion level 10, unless otherwise exempt. 

Contact the Public Safety office at publicsafety@nwfsc.edu or (850) 729-5378 for additional information.

Firefighter/EMT-Combined

Entry into the Firefighter/Emergency Medical Technician-Combined Program requires meeting the standards established by the Florida Division of State Fire Marshal, Bureau of Fire Standards and Training.  A copy of these requirements is available through the Public Safety Division of NWFSC.

The Firefighter/EMT Certificate program is a two semester program that consists of Firefighter standards and EMT training. Prior to admission to the program, all applicants must 1) earn a Postsecondary Education Readiness (PERT) score that demonstrates college readiness (score information)  or 2) pass Tests of Adult Basic Education (TABE) with a completion level 10, unless otherwise exempt. 

Contact the Public Safety office at publicsafety@nwfsc.edu or (850) 729-5378 for additional information.

Medical Laboratory Technology

The program leads to an Associate in Science (AS) in Medical Laboratory Technology degree. Graduates are eligible to apply for certification to become Medical Laboratory Technicians and/or continue their education at the bachelor’s or higher level.

New students will be accepted annually at the end of the summer semester. Applicants must complete specific requirements in addition to the College application to include performance in prerequisite coursework. Students selected for the program will be required to complete a background check and drug screen before admittance to the clinical phase of the program. Interested students should review all application material and selection criteria on the NWFSC MLT program website. Contact a Student Success Navigator at (850) 502-2895 or studentsuccess@nwfsc.edu for advising or additional information. 

Nursing A.S./R.N.

This two (2) year Nursing program, which is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), 3390 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 1400, Atlanta, GA, 30326, http://www.acenursing.com/accreditedprograms/programSearch.htm, (404) 975-5000, leads to an Associate in Science (A.S.) in Nursing degree. Graduates of the Nursing program are eligible to apply for licensure by examination to become Registered Nurses (R.N.s). They are also prepared to continue their education and can smoothly transition into the R.N. to B.S.N. program offered at NWFSC.

The Associate in Science in Nursing has a twice-a-year admissions process to begin nursing coursework in the Fall or Spring semester. Those who plan to apply to the program may wish to complete specified General Education coursework to prepare a more competitive application. Applicants must complete a program application in addition to the College application, must meet or exceed the minimum cumulative GPA requirement, and must pass the Nursing Admission Examination to be considered for selection into the program. Students selected for this program must meet matriculation criteria, including fingerprinting, a criminal background check, drug screen, proof of immunization, and CPR Certification, as required by clinical facilities. Interested students should review all application materials and selection criteria on the Nursing website. Contact the Nursing Department at (850) 729-6400 or asnursing@nwfsc.edu for additional information. 

Paramedic

The Paramedic program is accredited by the Committee on Accreditation for the EMS Professions (CoAEMSP). Paramedics are the highest trained and educated pre-hospital provider of emergency medicine. In the Paramedic program, students are provided the highest quality education to prepare to become competent leaders in the high pace work of Emergency Medical Services. The Paramedic program is three (3) semesters beyond the Emergency Medical Technician - Basic level and prepares students to apply for the Florida or National Registry Paramedic board examination. The Paramedic Certificate program is a Selective Admissions College Credit Certificate. Students admitted to this program must have a high school diploma or its equivalent and meet other applicable Admission criteria (including documentation of current Florida Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Certification, fingerprinting, a background check, and a drug screen). The curriculum for this program forms the core of the Associate in Science in Emergency Medical Services degree program. Contact the Public Safety Office at publicsafety@nwfsc.edu or (850) 729-5378 for additional information.

Physical Therapist Assistant

The Physical Therapist Assistant Program leads to an Associate in Science (A.S.) in Physical therapist Assistance degree. Students are admitted annually at the end of the fall semester to begin technical courses in spring. Admissions requirements and procedures are subject to change. Interested students should review all application materials and selection criteria on the PTA Program website. Applicants must complete specific requirements in addition to the College application. Students selected for the program will receive conditional acceptance pending completion of a background check and drug screen. Graduates are eligible to apply for licensure by examination to become licensed PTAs. Contact a Student Success Navigator at (850) 502-2895 or studentsuccess@nwfsc.edu for advising or additional information.

The Physical Therapist Assistant Program at Northwest Florida State College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), 3030 Potomac Ave., Suite 100, Alexandria, Virginia 22305-3085; telephone: (703) 706-3245; email: accreditation@apta.org; website: http://www.capteonline.org. If needing to contact the program/institution directly, please call (850) 863-6511 or email pta@nwfsc.edu

Radiography

The Radiography program is a two-year selective admissions program that leads to an Associate in Science (A.S.) in Radiography degree. New students are accepted annually for enrollment in the Summer term. Students selected for the program will receive conditional acceptance pending completion of a background check and drug screen. The admission criteria and process are subject to change; students should refer to the Selective Program Admissions Radiography webpage for the most current information. All courses in the Radiography program, including required general education and core courses, must be completed with a minimum grade of “C” to graduate with the Associate of Science in Radiography degree. Graduates are eligible to sit for the ARRT certification exam. For additional information, contact the Health Technology Department at (850) 729-6444.

The Northwest Florida State College Radiography program is accredited by the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). For more information on the current accreditation status, please contact The Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology, 20 North Wacker Drive, Suite 2850, Chicago, Illinois 60606-3182, (312) 704-5300, mail@jrcert.org. 

 

Programs with Additional Admission Requirements

Aviation

The Aviation Airframe and Powerplant Mechanics Career Certificate programs provide instruction consisting of a sequence of courses that involves the theoretical knowledge and practical laboratory training to develop the skills necessary to fulfill the FAA eligibility requirement for testing.

Prior to admission into the program, all applicants must 1) earn a Postsecondary Education Readiness (PERT) score that demonstrates college readiness (score information)  or 2) pass Tests of Adult Basic Education (TABE) with a completion level 10, unless otherwise exempt.

Contact the Aviation Program at aviation@nwfsc.edu or (850) 200-4169 for additional information.

Criminal Justice Training Programs

The Law Enforcement Officer Basic and Correctional Officer Basic Career and Technical Certificate Programs are certified through the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). The College is designated as Florida Criminal Justice Training Center Number 21 and students enrolling in these certificate programs must meet FDLE requirements (including fingerprinting and background check, and a medical exam), possess a standard high school diploma or its equivalent, successfully complete the Florida Basic Abilities Test (FBAT) and the Physical Agility Test (PAT), as well as satisfy all other NWFSC Admission standards. Contact the Criminal Justice Program at criminaljustice@nwfsc.edu or (850) 729-5378 for additional information.

Emergency Medical Services

The Associate in Science in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) curriculum forms the last stage of a career ladder program progression from Emergency Medical Technician to Paramedic to the associate in science degree. The A.S. EMS curriculum includes and is made up of the EMT curriculum, the Paramedic curriculum, and the general education requirements of NWFSC. Students entering the EMT and Paramedic programs must meet additional criteria including background checks, physical exams, and drug screening). Successful completion of the EMT and Paramedic programs as well as other college requirements, enable students to apply for the Associate in Science in EMS. Contact the Public Safety Office at publicsafety@nwfsc.edu or (850) 729-5378 for additional information.

Welding

Welding and Advanced Welding Technology are Selective Admissions Career Certificate programs.  New students are accepted for Admissions annually in both the Spring and Fall semesters.

Prior to admission to the program, all applicants must 1) earn a Postsecondary Education Readiness (PERT) that demonstrates college readiness (score information)  or 2) pass Tests of Adult Basic Education (TABE) with a completion level 10, unless otherwise exempt.

The NWFSC Welding program provides you the skills, knowledge, and customized training required to be a professional welder.  Students accepted into the program have the opportunity of obtaining NCCER credentials.  Each certificate level is acknowledged by the industry as proof of acquired skills in various forms of welding, cutting, base metal preparation, welding inspection, safety, and metallurgy.  Interested students should review all application materials and selection criteria in the Welding program guide.

Contact the Welding Office at (850) 200-5224 or visit the Welding website for additional information.

 

Non-Degree Seeking Students

Many students attend college to upgrade employment skills, meet specific pre-requisite requirements, or for personal interest and enjoyment. Students who attend college but do not wish to pursue a degree or certificate are classified as non-degree seeking. Students interested in taking courses in a non-degree seeking status must complete the NWFSC Admissions Application. While non-degree seeking students are not required to provide evidence of prior educational coursework, those seeking enrollment in courses with pre-requisites and/or additional admission requirements, or students seeking financial assistance, may be required to provide evidence of prior educational course work. A student will not be permitted to enroll in any college credit English, Humanities, Mathematics or Gordon Rule Social Science course unless they have provided proof that they have met the State of Florida mandated minimum scores on an approved placement test, provided documentation verifying they have met the pre-requisite, or by proving that they are exempt from placement testing.

 

Prior Learning/Transfer Credit

Overview

Northwest Florida State College (NWFSC) recognizes that valid learning can take place in non-traditional and non-collegiate environments. We acknowledge the prior learning experiences of both current and prospective students by awarding college credit, where appropriate. Prior learning could include credit by alternative means of study, nationally recognized testing and certifications, workplace learning, and military experiences and training. Credit may be granted under the following circumstances: 

  • The student has completed the admissions process, is a degree-seeking student, and enrolled in a qualifying NWFSC program. The course is applicable to the student’s declared program of study (to meet certificate, A.A., A.A.S., and A.S. degree programs as appropriate). 
  • The credit does not duplicate previous college credit.
  • The student demonstrates the achievement of course objectives at a level that is comparable and acceptable in the classroom. 
  • The satisfactory level of achievement is documented.

 

General Guidelines

The following provisions apply to Prior Learning and Articulation Analysis credit applied to the college record at Northwest Florida State College: 

  1. No certificate or degree will be awarded unless the student meets graduation requirements and 25% of the credits required for the degree (residency) is earned at NWFSC.  
  2. Selected career/technical, career certificate, and advanced and professional course credits may be awarded if the prior learning aligns with the objectives of the course requesting credit. This credit will appear on the student’s college transcript with a grade of “P” (passing). This credit does not apply toward credit computations for financial aid programs or student GPA; however, it is included in earned hours. 
  3. Per degree  program, not more than thirty (30) credits will be awarded to an individual student through this articulation plan. An exception is the Paramedic program, the completion of which may be applied in full to the EMS program. 
  4. If program accreditation or licensure issues in certain programs preclude the awarding of PLA credit, the College will not award PLA credit for coursework in that program. 
  5. Credits awarded through this articulation plan will not appear on the student’s college transcript until successful completion of at least 25% of the credits required for the degree or certificate at NWFSC. 
  6. Where multiple options exist for the award of college credits, preference should be given to general education and program core courses over elective courses. Otherwise, the student must choose from the college courses . 
  7. NWFSC credits earned through prior learning assessment may not transfer to another institution as such determination is the receiving institution’s decision. 
  8. Award of such credits does not accelerate or guarantee admission to limited access programs. In such cases, students must meet all the eligibility requirements for the program, as well as go through the full application and selection process for the program. If selected for admission to the program, the courses earned through this articulation will apply to program completion as appropriate.
  9. Student appeals regarding the PLA process shall be directed to the Vice President of Academic Affairs whose decision is final. To appeal, please contact the PLA Coordinator.    

 

Final decisions regarding the award of credits rests with the Vice President of Academic Affairs and the recording of credits on the student’s transcript rests with the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment.   

 

Types of Prior Learning Recognized

Credit from Other Institutions:

  • NWFSC will make every attempt to maximize a student’s past postsecondary academic history by carefully evaluating credits students want to transfer from another institution and applying them to equivalent NWFSC courses or using those transferred credits for electives in programs where applicable. The award of credits based upon previous college or technical center coursework requires that the student earn a minimum grade of “C” in the applicable course(s). In some cases, a higher grade and/or additional verification of skills may be required .
  •  Transfer credit will only be awarded to those courses for which the College has designated as eligible for transfer and applicable to an NWFSC credential. Transfer courses listed as “In Progress” on the transfer institution’s official transcript will not be awarded credit until such time as an updated official transcript is received showing a final grade. Transfer courses in which a grade of “W” (withdrawal) or “X” (audit) was awarded by the transfer institution will not be added to the student’s official NWFSC permanent record.
  • Once accepted, transfer credits will be recorded on the student’s permanent record as externally awarded and will indicate the original institution at which the course was completed. Beginning with the 2015 - 2016 Catalog, transfer grades are not used in the official NWFSC cumulative GPA calculation. However, please note that some Selective Admissions programs do have a minimum cumulative GPA requirement for admissions; in these cases, transfer grades are calculated in the cumulative GPA for admissions purposes but are not used in the cumulative GPA calculation that appears on the student’s permanent record. For Selective Admissions purposes, a transfer grade of “I” is considered the equivalent to an “F” for calculation purposes. Where appropriate, an equivalent NWFSC course number will be indicated. When the College does not offer an equivalent course or if the course differs substantively from the suggested NWFSC course, the transfer credits may be listed on the transcript as an “unclassified” course. The unclassified credits will be further described as an open elective, a subject area elective, a general education elective, or a general education subject area course, as appropriate.

 

  • NWFSC will accept credits from colleges or universities with institutional accreditation from an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USED), including:
  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Higher Learning Commission
  • New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education
  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
  • Western Association of Schools and Colleges

For students entering with credit from an accredited non-public institution participating in the Statewide Course Numbering System (SCNS), NWFSC will reference the comprehensive listing (https://flscns.fldoe.org/ReportsMaint.aspx) of all non-public institution courses in the SCNS inventory, as well as each course’s transfer level and transfer effective date.

 

NWFSC may accept credits from colleges or universities with accreditation from other agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education if the credits represent college-level coursework relevant to the program of study, with course credit and level of instruction resulting in student competencies at least equivalent to those of students enrolled in comparable instruction at NWFSC, and the instructor(s) of the course(s) possessed the minimum academic credentials and experiences as required of comparable NWFSC faculty at the time the instruction was received by the student. Credits from colleges or universities that are not accredited by agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

 

Students will need to complete the Transfer Credit Petition Form found in the Forms section of Raider Central on the main website for the credits to be evaluated. Acceptance of credits from non-USED accredited institutions of higher education rests with the appropriate faculty/instructional staff in consultation with the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment.

 

All attempted credits will be evaluated for transferability to the student’s permanent record (transcript) as follows:

•For students pursuing an associate degree or college credit certificate, all attempted credits at the freshman and sophomore levels, and

•For students pursuing a baccalaureate degree, all attempted credits at the freshman, sophomore, junior and senior levels.

 

Credits recorded as transfer credit on the student’s permanent record (transcript) do not guarantee that these credits will meet specific degree requirements for the student’s program. The College may limit the number of transfer credits applicable to the student’s degree. The determination of how transfer credits may apply to a specific degree program rests with the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment in consultation with the appropriate faculty/instructional staff.

The following factors will be considered in the evaluation of credits for transfer. The factors will be used in determining whether the course is transferable and in determining whether the course is recorded as a direct equivalent to an NWFSC course, not a direct equivalent but fulfilling a specific general education or degree requirement, or as a general elective:

 

•Breadth, depth, and rigor of course content as evidenced by course syllabi, prerequisites, placement test scores, exit requirements, student portfolios, textbooks, writing or oral communication requirements, grading standards, catalog descriptions, etc.

•Qualifications of the faculty member(s) providing the instruction

•Age of credits

•Recommendations through other established credit assessment bodies (e.g., ACE)
•Institutional accreditation via other professional assessment/accrediting bodies (e.g., AMA, NLN, a state agency)

•Secondary documentation of course competencies (e.g., professional certification, standardized exam scores, etc.) 

 

Authority for Acceptance of Equivalent Courses

Section 1007.24(7), Florida Statutes, states:

“Any student who transfers among postsecondary institutions that are fully accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education and that participate in the statewide course numbering system shall be awarded credit by the receiving institution for courses satisfactorily completed by the student at the previous institutions. Credit shall be awarded if the courses are judged by the appropriate statewide course numbering system faculty committees representing school districts, public postsecondary educational institutions, and participating nonpublic postsecondary educational institutions to be academically equivalent to courses offered at the receiving institution, including equivalency of faculty credentials, regardless of the public or nonpublic control of the previous institution. The Department of Education shall ensure that credits to be accepted by a receiving institution are generated in courses for which the faculty possess credentials that are comparable to those required by the accrediting association of the receiving institution. The awarding of credit may be limited to courses that are entered in the statewide course numbering system. Credits awarded pursuant to this subsection shall satisfy institutional requirements on the same basis as credits awarded to native students.”

Exceptions to General Rule for Equivalency

Since the initial implementation of the Statewide Common Course Numbering System (SCNS), specific disciplines or types of courses have been exempted from the guarantee of transfer for equivalent courses. These include courses that must be evaluated individually or courses in which the student must be evaluated for mastery of skill and technique. The following courses are exceptions to the general rule for course equivalencies and may not transfer. Transferability is at the discretion of the receiving institution.

  • Courses not offered by the receiving institution
  • For courses at non-regionally accredited institutions, courses offered prior to the established transfer date of the course in question
  • Courses in the _900-999 series are not automatically transferable and must be evaluated individually. These include such courses as Special Topics, Internships, Apprenticeships, Practica, Study Abroad, Theses, and Dissertations
  • Developmental courses
  • Graduate courses
  • Internships, apprenticeships, practica, clinical experiences, and study abroad courses with numbers other than those ranging from 900-999
  • Applied courses in the performing arts (Art, Dance, Interior Design, Music, and Theatre) and skills courses in Criminal Justice (academy certificate courses) are not guaranteed as transferable. These courses need evidence of achievement (e.g., portfolio, audition, interview, etc.)

 

Transfer Credit Petition

A student may petition either the equivalency determination or denial of transfer credits by submitting the Transfer Credit Petition Form found in the Forms section of Raider Central on the main website. The final determination will be made in consultation with the appropriate faculty/instructional staff normally responsible for the subject matter in question and the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment.

Application of Transfer Credits to Baccalaureate Degree Programs

Lower-division college credits in technical areas not generally applicable at the upper (baccalaureate) level will be reviewed according to the following factors prior to their acceptance as satisfying NWFSC upper (baccalaureate) degree requirements:

  • Breadth, depth, and rigor of course content as evidenced by course syllabi, prerequisites, placement test scores, exit requirements, student portfolios, textbooks, writing or oral communication requirements, grading standards, catalog descriptions, etc.
  • Qualifications of the faculty member(s) providing the instruction
  • Age of credits
  • Recommendations through other established credit assessment bodies (e.g., ACE)
  • Institutional accreditation via other professional assessment/accrediting bodies (e.g., AMA, NLN, a state agency)
  • Secondary documentation of course competencies (e.g., professional certification, standardized exam scores, etc.)
  • Where questions of applicability remain following such a review, the credits may still be used to meet lower-division degree requirements subject to one or more of the following conditions:
  • Successful completion of related higher-level courses in the student’s program of study
  • Successful completion of subsequent courses in the subject/course sequence
  • Successful completion of complementary lower-division coursework in the subject or related area
  • Demonstration of specific lab/clinical skills or other applied competencies
  • Completion of additional supplemental independent/directed study in the subject area which augments the skills/content of the technical course
  • Presentation of a portfolio of work substantiating the breadth, depth, and rigor of the course content to include both theory and applied competencies
  • Analysis of clusters of course credits where a combination of technical courses may represent baccalaureate level competencies when viewed as a package (e.g., eight credits in technical coursework may correspond to a three-credit traditional transfer course in a given subject area)

 

International Students

International students submitting international post-secondary transcripts for evaluation must have them translated and evaluated by one of the credential evaluation agencies sanctioned by the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services, Inc. (NACES). A list of NACES agency members can be found at www.naces.org. Students will need to have the official evaluation sent to NWFSC, Office of Academic Records and Enrollment, 100 College Blvd. East, Niceville, FL 32578. Each course on the evaluation will be individually assessed for transfer consideration. Normally, these credits will come in as elective credit only, unless the student can provide a translated course syllabus that details the course description, course pre-requisite or co-requisite requirements, and the student learning outcomes of the course. Credits will be awarded on a course-by-course basis.

 

Credit-by-Exam:

NWFSC follows the Florida Department of Education guidelines in acceptance of credit for nationally standardized accelerated mechanisms, allowing students to proceed toward their educational goals as rapidly as possible. Credit is awarded in accordance with recommendations established by the statewide Articulation Coordinating Committee (ACC). Section 1007.27(2) Florida Statutes requires the ACC to establish passing scores, course, and credit equivalents for the following:

  • Advanced Placement (AP)
  • Cambridge A-Level & AS-Level Examinations (AICE)
  • International Baccalaureate (IB)
  • College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)
  • DSST (DANTES)
  • Defense Language Proficiency Test (DLPT)
  • Excelsior/Regents College Examinations

 

Scores must be submitted on an official score report from the organization administering the examination. Students must be cognizant of initial testing and retake policies for each exam. Some exams require students to wait a specific amount of time before they can retake the exam. For graduation purposes, exams must be taken and successfully passed prior to the last date of the month in which graduation is sought.

 

Educational Credit for Industry Certifications: 

There are several acceleration methods associated with Industry Certifications. These acceleration opportunities allow students who are progressing to the next level of education to earn a guaranteed number of college credits toward the A.A.S. or A.S. degree.

 

The Gold Standard Articulation Agreements provide information on the identified industry certifications approved by the Florida State Board of Education. Contact the Coordinator of Career & Technical Education for additional information. 

 

Students may request academic credit for specific Industry Certifications that relate directly to NWFSC courses. To be eligible, the Industry Certification must be valid and five years old or newer. The award of credits based upon industry certification will be made only after receipt of official documentation of the certification via the certifying agency or testing vendor.

 

Technical Credit by Examination:   

Technical credit by examination (TCE) may be available when no nationally normed advanced placement test exists. Academic Departments will create a preapproved list of courses eligible for TCE. Students may request and the College may agree to prepare and administer examinations to assess specific technical course objectives at the discretion of the appropriate Department Chair/Director. 

Technical credit examinations may require written and verbal tests, performance test, portfolio review, or other evaluations. TCE is not available for all courses. 

  • The PLA Coordinator requests TCE to the Director/Chair of the program for which the course is under, which must be approved before moving forward.  
  • Students can attempt TCE for specific courses only once unless the Dean or designee approves a re-test request. 

Upon successful completion of TCE, the Director/Chair and the appropriate Dean sign the Articulation Analysis form and the PLA Coordinator sends the form to the Executive Director of Academic Records and Enrollment who will record a “P” on the student’s record. Documentation of the test results will be retained in the student’s record.  

Educational Credit for Non-Credit Training: 

Students may request academic credit for non-credit workforce training completed through NWFSC. The student must register as a degree-seeking student in an approved and related program. To be considered, the workforce training must be five years old or newer and the student must receive a completion certification indicating successful completion of the training.  

 

Credit for Military Training & Experience:

In recognition of the advanced academic and technical content of many military educational experiences, NWFSC may grant appropriate credits for military training that is suitable for postsecondary credit. Credit will be awarded in accordance with the state’s Articulation Coordinating Committee’s (ACC) document: Credit or Clock Hour for Military Experience Equivalency List. Courses not listed will be evaluated at the discretion of the College, who will consider recommendations from the American Council of Education (ACE) Guide. These are advisory only and not binding on the College.

 

Students who wish to receive transfer credit for military service in the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, and Coast Guard must provide an official Joint Services Transcript (JST). If no JST record is available for the service member, the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment will accept a copy of the service member’s DD Form 214. Order transcripts at the JST website. Students who wish to receive transfer credit for service in the Air Force must provide an official transcript from the Air University. Order transcripts at the Air University website. NWFSC does not accept certificates or other training documents for evaluation.

 

NWFSC will award credit for ACE recommendations in the associate and baccalaureate categories for the service member’s documented military courses. Students seeking credit for their military occupation experience must complete an electronic Transfer Credit form for the credits to be considered. Approval to award both undergraduate and clock hour credit will be based on a service member’s occupation. Awarded credit will be in consultation with the appropriate faculty/instructional staff and the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment.

 

Military courses in which ACE has provided optional credit recommendations will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and a final determination will be made in conjunction with the appropriate faculty/instructional staff with the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment. While ACE recommendations will be considered for credit during the evaluation of the JST, they are not binding to the College. All direct course equivalents and general education electives will be posted to the student’s academic record. A maximum of 18 non-general education electives will be posted. All credit awarded is posted to the student’s record as transfer credit with a grade of “P”. In such cases that the service member has no transferable experience documented on his or her JST, the service member will receive 4 hours of elective credit for their military experience. Although credit-by-examination scores such as CLEP and DANTES may appear on the JST, the service member is still required to provide an official score report from the respective examination authority for credit to be awarded from these alternative examinations.

 

Please note that the Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) and Air University (AU) are degree granting institutions accredited by the regional accrediting body Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), and as such, falls under the College’s general transfer credit policy, not this policy specific to the evaluation of the JST.


Credit for Law Enforcement Training:

In recognition of the advanced academic and technical content earned as a law enforcement officer, NWFSC may grant appropriate credits for law enforcement training and experience suitable for postsecondary credit. Credit will be awarded in accordance with the state’s Articulation Coordinating Committee’s (ACC) document: Credit or Clock Hour for Law Enforcement Experience Equivalency List. Courses not listed will be evaluated at the discretion of the College.

 

Prior Learning Assessment Portfolio: 

Credit may be awarded for properly documented college-level learning or experience achieved outside the college classroom. Students are responsible for defining, demonstrating, and documenting how they meet course objectives through a portfolio. The portfolio used to demonstrate the required learning includes the following: 

  • A summary statement from the student explaining what the evaluator will find in the portfolio and what the student hopes to accomplish as a result of the PLA evaluation 
  • One portfolio will be required for each course being requested for review.
  • Documents should ensure validity, i.e., measure what is intended. Excessive documentation, attractively presented, may not compensate for deficient performance in assessment or questionable relevance of learning to the objective. 
  • Varied forms of evidence of learning reflecting multiple types of assessment 
  • Students requesting credit for prior learning must do so prior to registration for the course involved and not while enrolled in the course.

 

Transient Students from Other Institutions

Students who are currently enrolled at another Florida post-secondary institution as a degree-seeking student but wish to take courses at NWFSC that will transfer back to their home institution are considered Transient Students. Transient students within the state of Florida are required to submit an online FloridaShines application. A FloridaShines application showing approval by the home institution is required to be admitted to NWFSC as a Transient Student. A new FloridaShines application will need to be submitted for each semester that the student intends to enroll at NWFSC. At the end of the semester, NWFSC will send a copy of the student’s official transcript back to the student’s home institution on the student’s behalf.

Students who are currently enrolled at a non-Florida post-secondary institution but wish to take courses at NWFSC that will transfer back to their home institution are considered standard Non-Degree Seeking students at NWFSC and should complete the College’s regular online Non-Degree Seeking application. If the student is seeking to enroll in coursework that requires a pre-requisite, the student will need to provide a copy of their transcript (or applicable score report) showing that the pre-requisite has been completed or submit their home institution’s authorization of course selection to the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment prior to initial registration.

 

International Students

International students should begin the Admissions process at least four months prior to the beginning of any college semester. International mail delays, transcript verification, international monetary transfers, consular appointments, travel, housing, and advisement and/or testing requirements must be anticipated many months in advance of enrollment. The desired date for application materials to be received by the College is April 1st for Fall, October 1st for Spring, and February 1st for the Summer semester. International students seeking college credit on the F-1 or M-1 Visa must satisfy all requirements for admission as a regular student and meet the following requirements:

  • Fill out the online International (F1-VISA) application located on the Admissions website.
  • Transcripts: Official transcripts of secondary school records from outside of the U.S. must be evaluated by a third-party agency at the student’s expense. The evaluation agency must be sanctioned by the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services, Inc. (NACES). A list of NACES agency members can be found at www.naces.org. Official post-secondary transcripts are not required for General College Admissions but must be submitted for students to receive credit for prior post-secondary work completed. Official transcripts from every post-secondary institution attended may be required for those programs with additional admissions criteria and/or a selective admission process. Official transcripts of post-secondary school records from outside of the U.S. must be evaluated by a third-party agency at the student’s expense. The evaluation agency must be sanctioned by the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services, Inc. (NACES). A list of NACES agency members can be found at www.naces.org. A course-by-course evaluation is required for all post-secondary record evaluations. Students will need to have the official evaluation sent to Northwest Florida State College, Office of Academic Records and Enrollment, 100 College Blvd. East, Niceville, FL 32578. Though not required, requests for the acceptance of career and technical level transfer work must also be evaluated by a NACES sanctioned evaluation service at the student’s expense. Recommendations from the evaluation service will be considered in determining what courses may transfer, however, the final determination will be made by the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment in consultation with the appropriate academic department representatives, if applicable. Once the original transcript evaluation documents are received and processed by NWFSC, they are considered the property of the College and are only considered as ‘official’ for internal academic and business processes. These documents will not be returned to the student, nor will they be forwarded to another college or agency. Students seeking an exception to this policy may submit a written request to the Executive Director of Academic Records and Enrollment for consideration.
  • Financial Support: An official statement from the applicant’s (or sponsor’s) bank or other financial institution or government agency verifying the availability of sufficient funds for tuition, matriculation, books, living expenses, etc., must be submitted (Approximately: $26,000 for the academic year). With the exception of athletic scholarships, financial assistance for international students is not available from NWFSC. An international student must be able to finance all school expenses and transportation. Before obtaining a visa, the U.S. government will require a copy of the financial certification given to NWFSC. Employment is not permitted unless permission to work is given by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). College fees are subject to change without notice.
  • Language Proficiency: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) results are required of applicants for whom English is not the primary language. The minimum required score is 173 for the computer-based TOEFL cBT and 61 on the Internet-based TOEFL iBT. Students, who have evidence of English proficiency in lieu of a passing TOEFL score, may submit a Request for Exception: Admissions Policy Form. NWFSC does NOT administer the TOEFL test.
  • Health Information: Health insurance with hospitalization coverage and a repatriation clause is required. This insurance should be obtained prior to the international student’s first registration and must be maintained while attending NWFSC.
  • An official notice of acceptance or denial will be sent to applicants. Applicants should not make definite plans to arrive in the U.S. until he or she has been notified of acceptance to the College. Being in the U.S. will not affect the admission decision. Completing the application process does not guarantee acceptance to NWFSC. When all admissions documents, academic credentials, and test results are on file and meet minimum standards for the College, an acceptance letter will be sent along with the U.S. Immigration Form I-20. The Form I-20 is the document required to obtain the Student (F-1 or M-1) Visa. Final approval for a visa is determined by the American Embassy or Consulate representative and not the College. If the student cannot enroll for the semester written in the notice of acceptance and wishes to enroll in a different semester, the NWFSC International Student Success Navigator must be informed immediately.

NWFSC does NOT provide on-campus housing; therefore, international students must find available housing in the community. There is limited public transportation service in the area; students must provide their own transportation to and from the College. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) regulations require that foreign students enroll in a full-time course of study during two (2) of the yearly terms. USCIS regulations also restrict work opportunities for such students. International students should consult with the International Student Success Navigator and present his or her student visa and evidence of health insurance prior to registration.

 

Collegiate High School

         

 

The Collegiate High School is an A+ charter school that is part of the Okaloosa County School District. This innovative public school is operated by Northwest Florida State College and is located on the college’s Niceville campus. The Collegiate High School provides a unique educational environment for motivated high school students in grades 9, 10, 11, and 12. The school’s rigorous program of study enables students to complete a high school diploma and an associate degree simultaneously.

The Collegiate High School is fully accredited by AdvanceED and is free of charge to students. Admission is open to any student eligible to enter grades 9, 10, or 11 and who meet the CHS entrance requirements. The Collegiate High School offers a wide selection of hundreds of college-level courses and students may customize their program of study to meet the criteria for the career path they intend to pursue. Students may earn an Associate in Arts or an Associate in Science degree.  

For more information visit the Collegiate High School website at https://chs.nwfsc.edu/ or call the office at (850) 729-4949.

 

Dual Enrollment for High School Students

Dual Enrollment provides the opportunity for qualified high school students to enroll in NWFSC courses while being simultaneously enrolled in high school. Students receive both high school and college credit for courses completed successfully. The terms and eligibility criteria of Dual Enrollment are defined by Florida Statute (1007.271), college policies and procedures, and articulation agreements between the College and area schools and Districts. Articulation Agreements are established with the Okaloosa County School District, Walton County School District, and Private Schools, along with Districts that border Okaloosa and Walton counties as requested. A Homeschool Articulation Agreement is also established.  All agreements are reviewed annually and are located on the Dual Enrollment website.

Students must meet all eligibility requirements to enroll in the Dual Enrollment program. Student success is impacted by academic readiness and social maturity.  Students who are Dual Enrolled are expected to participate fully in their college classes. Dual students may request an advising appointment with a Student Success Navigator and have full access to services provided by the Zoghby Learning Resource Center, such as tutoring and math lab.  Dual Enrollment students are exempt from tuition, matriculation, and laboratory fees and will be provided the required instructional materials through the Barnes and Noble Bookstore on the Niceville campus. All books should be returned to Barnes and Noble at the end of the semester.  Dual Enrollment students are encouraged to engage in Raider Life activities and experiences that promote student development and engagement.

Prospective students and their parents may seek additional information by phone at (850) 729-5205, via email at dualenrollment@nwfsc.edu  or by visiting the Dual Enrollment website for the most current admission information and procedures.

 

Florida Residency for Tuition Purposes

NWFSC offers one of the lowest tuition rates in the state of Florida. In order to take advantage of this and receive in-state tuition, students must prove Florida Residency by submitting the Florida Residency Declaration and provide all applicable supporting documentation. The Florida Residency for Tuition Purposes policy is based upon state statutes, rules of the two higher education governing boards in Florida, and statewide guidelines developed by college and university administrators in conjunction with the Statewide Residency Committee and the Florida Department of Education.

Students are classified as Florida residents, Border State residents, or Non-Florida residents for the purpose of fee assessment at the time of initial registration. Criteria for determining residency status are detailed in Florida Statutes and the administrative rules of the State Board of Education. A Florida resident for tuition purposes is a person who has (or a dependent person whose parent or legal guardian has) established and maintained legal residence in Florida for the 12 months immediately preceding the first day of classes of the term for which enrollment is requested. Residence in Florida must be for the purpose of establishing a permanent home and not merely incident to enrollment at an institution of higher education.

To qualify as a Florida resident for tuition purposes the student must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident, or certain individuals granted indefinite stay by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service. Living in Florida for the express purposes of attending school does NOT constitute legal residence. Students who depend on out-of-state parents for support are presumed to be legal residents of the same state as their parents unless one parent has established legal residence in Florida for more than 12 months. Two (2) documents supporting the establishment of legal residence must be dated or issued 12 months before the first day of classes of the term for which Florida residency is sought. Supporting documents for residency classification must be submitted to the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment prior to the first day of classes of the term to be considered as in-state for tuition purposes. If a student’s schedule includes only courses that are part of a non-traditional part-of-term that begins after the start of the regular semester, that student must submit supporting documents for residency classification prior to the first day of the earliest non-traditional part-of-term for which they are enrolled. Students cannot hold out-of-state driver’s licenses, vehicle registrations, etc., and be eligible for Florida residency.

The Office of Academic Records and Enrollment verifies through the student’s submitted documentation whether the student is eligible to be designated as a Florida resident for tuition assessment purposes. Note that while the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment makes every attempt to validate residency documentation, the ultimate responsibility to ensure that residency requirements have been satisfied belongs to the student. If the student fails to prove their Florida residency status (or Border State residency status), the student will be charged tuition at the out-of-state (non-resident) rate.

Providing false residency information is a violation of Florida law and may result in disciplinary action. The College will correct the fees assessed for those students who misrepresent their place of legal residence. An invoice will be issued for the increase in the student’s tuition.

Dependent

Students who are claimed on their parent’s tax return as a dependent for the previous calendar year shall be considered to be dependent. In addition, a student, whether or not living with their parent, who is eligible to be claimed by their parent as a dependent under the federal income tax code shall be classified as dependent. In general, the IRS requires that a “qualifying child” or “dependent” meet six (6) tests:

  • The child must be your son, daughter, or stepchild.
  • The child must be: (a) under age 19 at end of the year; (b) under age 24 at end of the year AND a full-time student; or (c) any age if permanently disabled.
  • The child must have lived with you for more than half of the year subject to IRS exceptions.
  • The child must have NOT provided more than half of his or her own support for the year.
  • The child is NOT filing a joint return for the year (unless that joint return is filed only as a claim for refund).
  • If the child meets the rules to be a qualifying child of more than one person, you must be the person entitled to claim the child as a qualifying child.

Independent

A student who meets any one of the following criteria shall be classified as an independent student for the determination of residency for tuition purposes. Evidence that the student meets one of these criteria will be requested by the College.

  • The student is 24 years of age or older by the first day of classes of the term for which residency status is sought at a Florida institution.
  • The student is married.
  • The student has children who receive more than half of their support from the student.
  • The student has other dependents that live with and receive more than half of their support from the student.
  • The student is a Veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces or is currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training.
  • Both of the student’s parents are deceased or the student is, or was (until age 18), a dependent or ward of the court or in foster care.
  • The student is determined as an unaccompanied homeless by a school district homeless liaison, emergency shelter, or transitional housing program.
  • Documentation is provided showing the student provides more than 50% of their support for the year.

Qualification by Exception

Other persons not meeting the 12-month legal residence requirement may be classified as Florida residents for tuition purposes if they fall within one of the limited special categories authorized by the Florida Legislature [Florida Statute 1009.21(10)]. These exceptions are listed below.

Documentation in support of these exceptions is required:

  • Active duty service members of the U.S. and active drilling members of the Florida National Guard stationed in Florida (spouse and dependent children included).
  • Active duty service members of the U.S. not stationed in Florida but whose legal state of residence is Florida (spouse and dependent children included).
  • Full-time instructional and administrative personnel employed by the State public school system, college system, or university system (spouse and dependent children included).
  • A dependent child who has lived with an adult relative (who is not a parent or legal guardian) for at least three years.
  • Persons who were enrolled as Florida residents at a state institution of higher learning but who abandon Florida residency for less than one year.
  • Latin American/Caribbean Scholars.
  • U.S. citizens living on the Isthmus of Panama who has completed 12 consecutive months of college-level coursework at the FSU Panama Canal Branch (spouse and dependent children included).
  • Full-time employees of state agencies or political subdivisions of the State when the student fees are paid by the agency or subdivision for the purpose of job-related law enforcement or corrections training.
  • Qualified beneficiaries under the Florida Pre-Paid Postsecondary Expense Program as provided in Florida statute.
  • A dependent child whose parents are divorced, separated, or otherwise living apart, will be considered a resident for tuition purposes if either parent is a legal resident of Florida, regardless of which parent claims the minor for tax purposes.

The law allows non-U.S. citizens such as lawful permanent residents, temporary permanent residents, asylees, parolees, and refugees who have applied for and been approved for such status and who otherwise meet the 12-month legal residence requirements, to be eligible to establish Florida residency for tuition purposes. For a list of non-immigrant categories (visa categories and INS classifications) eligible to establish Florida residency for tuition purposes contact the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment at registrar@nwfsc.edu.

Re-Classification

Students classified as out-of-state residents for tuition purposes may re-apply for in-state residency at such time as they have completed the requirements for establishing legal Florida residency. Students requesting re-classification should email registrar@nwfsc.edu and request a Florida Residency Reclassification Review. Students seeking re-classification will be required to submit an updated Declaration of Florida Residency form and supporting documentation to the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment. A minimum of three (3) documents that support clear and convincing evidence of Florida legal resident for the previous twelve (12) consecutive months will be required. Supporting documents for reclassification must be submitted to the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment prior to the first day of the semester in order to be considered. If a student’s schedule includes only courses that are part of a non-traditional part-of-term that begins after the start of the regular semester, that student must submit supporting documents for residency reclassification prior to the first day of the earliest non-traditional part-of-term for which they are enrolled.

Students who become eligible for in-state tuition in the middle of a semester shall have their record adjusted to reflect the in-state tuition rate effective the next semester of enrollment. Tuition will not be adjusted for the current semester.

Residency Appeals

In cases where the student expresses a desire to appeal the residency classification, they must submit a Residency Appeal Form to the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment. This form may be obtained by contacting the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment at registrar@nwfsc.edu. Once submitted, the appeal will be referred to the Residency Appeal Committee in accordance with the College’s official appeal process. The Residency Committee will render the final residency determination and the reasons for the determination in writing to the student.

 

Out-of-State Residency Tuition Waivers

The state offers a variety of exemptions and waivers for the out-of-state portion of tuition, found in Florida Statute 1009.26. The most commonly awarded waivers by NWFSC are below. Students must first submit a Residency Declaration for Florida Residents before a tuition waiver can be requested. A waiver will only be awarded once the student demonstrates he or she does not qualify for Florida residency. Students with questions regarding residency waiver eligibility should contact the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment at registrar@nwfsc.edu

Florida High School Graduate

House Bill 851 amended section (s.) 1009.26, Florida Statutes (F.S.), fee waivers, to authorize an out-of-state fee waiver for students who have attended a Florida high school for 3 consecutive years immediately prior to graduating from a Florida high school. These students must have applied to a Florida College System institution or State University System within 24 months after their high school graduation. This waiver can be applied to recent Florida high school graduates regardless of their immigration status to include DACA and undocumented students. Applicants who do not qualify for in-state residency but are eligible for this waiver should submit an official Florida High School transcript and complete the Out-of-State Fee Waiver: Florida High School Graduate Form

VA Eligible Students (for Veterans and their Dependents)

House Bill 7015 created the Congressman C.W. Bill Young Veteran Tuition Waiver Program and amended section (s.) 1009.26, Florida Statutes (F.S.) fee waivers, to authorize an out-of-state fee waiver for honorably discharged Veterans and their dependents of the U.S. Armed Forces, U.S. Reserve Forces or the National Guard who physically reside in Florida. Veterans students and their dependent(s) are required to submit the Declaration for Florida Residency and the College must officially determine that they are not eligible for in-state tuition before the Veteran and/or dependent(s) can pursue an out-of-state fee waiver. 

NWFSC shall waive the out-of-state tuition for Veteran students and their dependent(s) who meet the following conditions:

  • The Veteran student and/or dependent’s sponsor received an honorable discharge as a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, U.S. Reserve Forces or the National Guard.
  • Proof of honorable discharge confirmed on Veteran’s DD214 (member copy 4).
  • Proof of physical residence in the state may include but is not limited to, submission of an annual lease and/or a Florida Driver’s License reflecting the Veteran’s name.

To be eligible for the waiver, students must submit the Out-of-State Fee Waiver: VA Eligible Student Form for consideration. Once approved, this waiver is good for only one academic year.  Once the waiver has expired at the end of the academic year, students are required to submit a new Florida Residency Declaration and the College must officially determine that they are still not eligible for in-state tuition before the Veteran and/or dependent(s) can pursue an out-of-state fee waiver again. If the student is still classified as not eligible for in-state tuition, then they must submit a new Out-of-State Fee Waiver: VA Eligible Student Form for it to be applied to the upcoming academic year.

Active Duty Service Member

House Bill 799 was signed into law July 2016 and amended section (s.) 1009.26, Florida Statutes (F.S.), fee waivers, to authorize an out-of-state fee waiver for a person who is an active-duty member of the Armed Forces of the United States residing or stationed outside of the state of Florida. Active-duty students are required to submit the Declaration for Florida Residency and the College must officially determine that they are not eligible for in-state tuition before the active-duty service member can pursue an out-of-state fee waiver. 

To be eligible for this waiver, students need to submit the Out-of-State Fee Waiver: Active-Duty Service Member Form and provide a copy of their current active-duty orders to the Office of Academic Records and Enrollment. Once approved, this waiver is good for only one academic year.  

Once the waiver has expired at the end of the academic year, active-duty students are required to submit a new Declaration for Florida Residency and the College must officially determine that they are not eligible for in-state tuition before the active-duty service member can pursue a new Out-of-State Fee Waiver: Active-Duty Service Member Form for the upcoming academic year. 

 

Additional Resources

Florida Statutes

  • 1009.21 Determination of Resident Status for Tuition Purposes. This statute outlines the broad legal parameters for establishing residency for tuition purposes in Florida public higher education institutions.

State Board of Education Rules

  • 6A-10.044 Residency for Tuition Purposes. The purpose of this rule is to establish consistent policies for the classification of students as residents for tuition purposes in accordance with criteria set forth in Section 1009.21, F.S.
  • 6A-20.003 Florida Residency as a Requirement for the Receipt of State Student Aid. Students that attend a Florida post-secondary educational institution must show eligibility to receive funds from state student financial assistance programs by following proving Florida residency as outlined in 1009.21, F.S.

Board of Governors Residency Regulation

Florida Residency Guidelines

  • Articulation Coordinating Committee’s Guidelines on Florida Residency for Tuition Purposes. This Residency Guidelines document was adopted by the Articulation Coordinating Committee to assist college and university administrators in implementing Section 1009.21, Florida Statutes; Rules 6A-10.044 and 6A-20.003, Florida Administrative Code; and the Board of Governors (BOG) Residency Regulation. The guidelines, as maintained by the Statewide Residency Committee, are used to determine residency status for tuition purposes in public colleges and universities. The Florida Residency Guidelines for Tuition Purposes were first adopted by the Articulation Coordinating Committee on September 6, 2006.

 

Alabama Residency for Tuition Purposes

The Florida Legislature allows the option of providing Alabama residents a different tuition assessment for post-secondary classes. At NWFSC, the Alabama Border State Fee, at a rate of an additional $1.00 per credit hour to the current in-state tuition rate, will be assessed for all eligible Alabama residents.

To be eligible for the Alabama Border State Fee the student must complete the Declaration of Alabama Residency Form and provide verification of a current Alabama driver’s license, Alabama vehicle registration, or Alabama voter’s registration card.

 

Admission of Sexual Offender/Sexual Predator

The presence of students officially designated as Sexual Offenders/Sexual Predators on campus would be disruptive of the orderly process of the College’s programs and/or would interfere with the rights and privileges of other students. In accordance with Section 1001.64(8a), Florida Statutes, the College may consider the past actions of any person applying for admission or enrollment and may deny admission or enrollment to an applicant because of past misconduct if it is determined to be in the best interest of the College.

Accordingly, the College will deny admission/enrollment to students who are officially designated as Sexual Offenders/Sexual Predators. An applicant wishing to contest their denial of admission/enrollment should follow the appeal process outlined below. If an academic term has already begun at the time the College receives a notification of past misconduct that would classify the student as not eligible for admission, the student’s admission will be revoked, the student will be administratively dropped from all courses and refunded for fees paid for the term in progress. The student may also receive credit for required textbooks purchased for classes from which the student is dropped. This decision may be appealed to the Chief Student Success Officer.

To submit an appeal the student must send a letter to the Chief Student Success Officer and address the following:

  • The reason the student believes an appeal should be granted.
  • Documentation of the legal proceedings that led to the student being listed with the State of Florida as a Sexual Offender/Predator including police reports, court proceedings, adjudication, time served, and parole information. If this information is not received with the letter of appeal, the Chief Student Success Officer may attempt to collect it through other means.
  • The names and contact telephone numbers of at least three professional references who can attest to the student’s ability to function without harm to a learning community (which includes persons under the age of 18.) This could include probation officers, therapists, employers, and clergy.
  • The name and contact information for the therapist of the sex therapy group that was required as part of the legal sanction or in which the student/applicant participated.

Once the full documentation is received, the Chief Student Success Officer will review it, conduct telephone interviews with references provided, share all of the information with the College President and talk with the appellant about the situation presented. If there is sufficient reason at this point to believe an appeal may be granted, the Chief Student Success Officer will conduct a face-to-face meeting with the student to determine the risk the student poses to the campus learning environment. The final decision will be made based on the full documentation received and the meeting with the student. The student will receive a letter of the decision from the Chief Student Success Officer. The Chief Student Success Officer will monitor the student’s enrollment each term through their degree completion at NWFSC. Any behavioral issues will result in immediate and permanent expulsion from NWFSC.

 

Applicant Records

Applicant Records (the pre-attendance record) include records relating to an individual’s application for admission to NWFSC prior to their actual attendance as an enrolled student. Although not considered education records (because an applicant is not yet a student), Section 1006.52, Florida Statutes does define Applicant Records and provides that such records are confidential and exempt from Sections 119.07(1), Florida Statutes and 24(a), Art. I, Fla. Constitution.