Coronavirus: Coronavirus

Prospective Applicants

Tours and Information Sessions

As LA County continues to open up, USC has adapted campus guidelines while keeping the health and safety of our campus and community members at the top of our mind. As part of our reopening, limited on-campus tours have resumed at reduced capacity. Please visit our On-Campus Tours page to learn more.

Due to limited tour guide staffing and small group sizes, prospective students are still encouraged to first sign up for one of our virtual programs.

Please know that we do not use demonstrated interest in our application reviews. Whether or not you are able to visit campus or attend our virtual sessions will not impact any future applications to USC.

Test-Optional Policy

After reflection and consideration, we have extended USC’s test-optional policy for two more years. First-year students may apply for admission and scholarships to USC for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 Academic Years without submitting SAT or ACT scores—though they may still submit them if they wish.

Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information about this policy.

International applicants whose native language is not English will still be asked to demonstrate their English proficiency through submission of TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic scores. This requirement can be waived if a student has earned a minimum score of 650 on the SAT Evidence Based Reading and Writing section or a 27 on the ACT English section. If a student wishes to waive the English proficiency requirement with an SAT or ACT score, they must indicate in their application that they want test scores considered. Please see our website for more information regarding English proficiency.

Evaluating 2021 Transcripts

We always take context into consideration when reviewing applications. The effects of COVID-19 will be considered as we evaluate applications for years to come. Common App is adding a section for students and schools to report any necessary information about the impacts of COVID-19 as it relates to the student’s home life as well as any changes implemented by the school.

Transfer students:

See our Transfer Credit Policy in our Transferring to USC brochure. Transcripts will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

At this time, we are not planning to change our scholarship or financial aid processes due to COVID-19.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

English Language Proficiency

We still require English Language Proficiency test results from students whose native language is not English. Applicants must submit test results from the TOEFL (or TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition), IELTS (or IELTS Indicator), Duolingo English Test or PTE Academic English proficiency examinations. We are unable to accept TOEFL ITP Plus for China.

This requirement can be waived if a student has earned a minimum score of 650 on the SAT Evidence Based Reading and Writing section or a 27 on the ACT English section. If a student wishes to waive the English proficiency requirement with an SAT or ACT score, they must indicate in their application that they want test scores considered.

Please note that students who submit results from the Duolingo English Test will still be required to take the International Student Exam. See our webpage for more details about English Proficiency Criteria.

Admitted First-Year Students

Final Transcripts

One of the conditions of admission for every USC first-year student is that they must provide final official high school transcripts showing proof of graduation. Please arrange to have a transcript that includes your graduation date sent to USC as soon as possible. This may require you to let your counselor or school registrar know where you plan to attend or for you to order the transcript yourself. Please follow whatever protocol your school uses.

We understand some schools will need more time than usual to send out final transcripts due to school buildings being closed and staff working remotely. We also know that students at international schools may not be able to provide proof of high school completion until much later in the summer. That will not impede your fall enrollment. However, we would like to complete your record as soon as possible, so we will continue to let you know that this transcript is missing until it has been received.

Class Registration and Orientation

Feel free to visit our Office of Orientation Programs website for up-to-date information on orientation programming. This is also where you will find information about placement exams.

USC Housing

Please refer to the university housing FAQs on the COVID-19 Resource Center for more information. If you have questions about your housing application, contact housing@usc.edu.

Health & Well-Being

Please refer to the Student Health Services section of the USC COVID-19 Resource Center and the USC Student Health website for campus health updates and ways to stay well during stressful times.

USC’s Plans for Fall 2021

Please refer to the Project Restart page on our COVID-19 Resource Center for more information.

Admitted Transfer Students

Please refer to our Admitted Transfer FAQ for additional information not covered on this site.

Transcripts

Please arrange to have your college send your transcripts electronically. If your school’s system requires an email address in order to send the transcript, please use etrans@usc.edu. Paper transcripts will not be processed as quickly, which may delay course registration or the creation of your Transfer Credit Report.

Class Registration and Orientation

Feel free to visit our Office of Orientation Programs website for up-to-date information on orientation programming. This is also where you will find information about placement exams.

USC Housing

University housing for transfer students is not guaranteed and is limited this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and local public health guidance. Please refer to the university housing FAQs on the COVID-19 Resource Center for more information. If you have questions about your housing application, contact housing@usc.edu.

Health & Well-Being

Please refer to the Student Health Services section of the USC COVID-19 Resource Center and the USC Student Health website for campus health updates and ways to stay well during stressful times.

USC’s Plans for Fall 2021

Please refer to the Project Restart page on our COVID-19 Resource Center for more information.

Admitted International Students

Please refer to the USC COVID-19 Resource Center page for International Students for the most up-to-date information.

Travel

When making plans to travel to the U.S., be advised of current government travel restrictions and plan your travel carefully. For information and tips about how to plan your trip in accordance with any restrictions, please see Travel Restrictions and Guidance on the International Students page of USC’s COVID-19 Resource Center.

I-20 Information

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, USC I-20 Processing continues to issue electronically signed digital I-20s under guidance from the Department of Homeland Security. International students who have been admitted, submitted their statement of intent, and paid their commitment deposit (if applicable) will receive their electronic I-20 via their USC email. Newly admitted students must claim their USC NetID to receive their I-20.

For more additional information about receiving your I-20 and other pertinent visa information, please visit our I-20 Processing page.

Transfer Admits:

Remember that in order for USC to issue you an I-20, you need to contact your current university and ask them to transfer your SEVIS record to USC. We cannot issue an I-20 until that process happens. Once it does, we will prepare a digital I-20 that will be available in your USC Google drive. Please refer to the email we sent titled “USC I-20 Process” and our I-20 website for more information.

SPRING TRANSFER ADMITS: If you plan to remain at your current university for the fall semester, please do not initiate the SEVIS record transfer until the end of the fall.

Visas*

If you are unable to obtain a student visa in time to arrive in Los Angeles for the start of the fall term, you may still enroll at USC this fall by taking your first-semester coursework remotely. If you pursue this online option, you won’t have to obtain your student visa until later this fall; you will still need it in order to start on campus in January.

*Canadian citizens are exempt from obtaining an F-1/J-1 visa as they do not need an F-1/J-1 visa stamp in passport to enter the U.S. in international student status.