DATE: April 9, 2009
TO: Deans, Chairs, Directors, Graduate Coordinators, Graduate Staff, and
FROM: Henry T. Frierson
Associate Vice President and Dean of the Graduate School
RE: Change to the Policy Related to International Students' Writing Skills
Graduate Council policy requires that international students meet a minimum score of 320 on the verbal portion of the GRE, and a minimum score on one of the following English language skills tests: 6 on IELTS, 77 on MELAB, 213 on Computer TOEFL, 80 on Internet TOEFL, or 550 on Paper TOEFL.
Current policy requires that students who fall below the required minimums must take a remedial writing course (EAP 5845 Academic Writing) as part of their conditional admission.
Effective immediately, the new policy is that individual programs will determine acceptable writing skills, using a holistic evaluation. Programs will be responsible for creating a plan for student success in academic writing. This plan must be included in the student's acceptance letter as a condition of admission. Students must still meet the UF required minimums on the above-mentioned tests or else be admitted conditionally.
The new policy is below.
New Graduate Council Policy effective immediately(Spring 2009):
"Graduate students must have sufficient writing skills to be successful in graduate education. In addition to checking that applicants meet the minimum IELTS, MELAB, TOEFL and/or verbal GRE scores required for graduate admission, admission committees must assess their applicants' writing skills and make reasonable admission decisions based on a holistic evaluation of the applicants' credentials. In cases where applicants are admitted but lack sufficient writing skills to maximize their education, the graduate coordinator must ensure that sufficient opportunities are available for the student to succeed. These opportunities include tailor-made instruction in the academic unit or courses and workshops offered at UF or elsewhere.
Graduate coordinators should review their students' writing indices (test scores such as the analytic writing portion of the GRE, letter of intent, writing samples, etc.) and, when appropriate, inform them of the need to improve their writing skills. Writing skills courses and screening tests are available through the UF's Academic Written English Program."
The Graduate School
University of Florida