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Glossary of Terms and Acronyms

Undergraduate - term used to describe a student studying for the first degree after secondary school. Undergraduate studies are either two or four year programs. Flagler College only offers four year programs.

Graduate – term used to describe education pursued after an initial four year degree is earned. These are also known as post-graduate studies.

Freshman – A U.S. term used to describe students in their first year of secondary school or college/university studies.

Sophomore - A U.S. term used to describe students in their second year of secondary school or college/university studies.

Junior - A U.S. term used to describe students in their third year of secondary school or college/university studies

Senior - A U.S. term used to describe students in their fourth year of college/university studies.

Transfer - A U.S. term used to describe students who have completed some courses at another college or university. If you are an international student applying to Flagler College as a transfer student, you should complete the transfer student application instead of the international student application.

Dual citizenship - If you have passports from more than one country, and one of those countries if the U.S., please list both or use your U.S. citizenship. Although your country of citizenship does not factor into an admission decision, your U.S. citizenship will make you eligible for financial opportunities not available to international students. If you have two or more passports from countries other than the U.S., it usually makes no difference which nationality you choose to use.

Country of citizenship – This means the country or countries from which you have a passport in your name.

Visa status – You may be asked if you have a “visa”. Visas are official stamps in your passport allowing you to enter a country for a specific reason. In the U.S. we have visitor’s visas, student visas, work visas and many more. You can find all visa types at http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/general/all-visa-categories.html. If you have never visited the U.S., you should not have a visa. If you visited for holiday or vacation, you may have a visitor’s visa. If your family is international but lives in the U.S., you will have a visa. Whatever kind of visa you may have, when you enroll in a college or university as an international student, you must change and have a student visa. When you choose your college or university, they will provide you with a document called the “I-20” to take to the U.S. embassy in your country. The visa officer in your country will either approve your visa or deny your visa.

“I-20” - When you choose your college or university, they will provide you with a document called the “I-20”. The “I-20” is a document you to take to the U.S. embassy in your country to obtain a student visa. The “I-20” will state that you have been admitted to that college, it will outline how long your study period is (usually four years), the annual cost of the college, and the source of your funding to finance your education. To obtain the I-20, your college or university will require a bank letter or other financial document to prove you have sufficient financial support to finance your first year at college.

Bank letter/statement – Colleges and Universities will require a “bank letter” or “bank statement” to prove you have sufficient financial support to finance your first year at college before they will issue an “I-20”. This also can be a form called “Certification of Finances”. Most colleges do not require this financial documentation until after you have been admitted to the college, though some may require this information at the time of application. Flagler College will ask for the bank letter after your formal admission. Additionally, we require full payment for your first semester before an I-20 is issued.

Early Decision - when a student applies to a university to which they want to attend and requests an admission decision well before the normal admission notification date. There is a specific deadline for this plan. The student may be admitted, denied or deferred to the general pool of applicants. If the student is admitted, it is a binding admission plan. This means the student signs a contract and agrees to withdraw applications from all other schools to which he/she has applied. For Flagler College, early decision applications are due by November 1 and notification will be sent to you by mid-December.

Merit-based scholarships – scholarships awarded for academic performance, talent, leadership and athletics. Each college/university may require a specific application, portfolio or performance to make these awards. Flagler College awards academic scholarships to U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. Any international student or U.S. citizen can receive an athletic scholarships Athletic scholarships are awarded directly by coaches.

Need-based financial aid – is money awarded to you on the basis of financial need. Each college/university will require specific forms and applications to assess your financial need. Flagler College awards need-based financial aid to U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. We do not offer need-based financial aid to international students.

FAFSA – this is a form used by citizens of the United States to apply for financial aid. You can find the form at www.fafsa.ed.gov . If you parents live outside the United States and are unfamiliar with the financial aid process, email admission@flagler.edu and request information on “completing the FAFSA for U.S. citizens outside the U.S.”

Standardized tests - this is a term used to describe any examinations offered nationally or globally. Find the most common standardized tests described below:

TOEFL – TOEFL is an acronym for Test of English as a Foreign Language. It is a test required by Flagler College to assess your ability to study in an environment where English is the language of instruction. It is not the only choice of testing to meet this requirement. Whether you are an international student or a U.S. citizen who lives overseas whose first language is not English, you can take the TOEFL in place of the SAT or ACT.

IELTS – IELTS is an acronym for International English Language Testing System. It is an alternative test required by Flagler College to assess your ability to study in an environment where English is the language of instruction. Whether you are an international student or a U.S. citizen who lives overseas whose first language is not English, you can take the IELTS in place of the SAT or ACT.

SAT – SAT is an acronym for the Scholastic Aptitude Test. The SAT exam is only required of students who come from country where the home language is English and the student does not have a British-patterned or international education system. If you come from a school system where you will take the BGCSE, GCSE, IGCSE, CXC, CSEC and /or CAPE exams in English language, you can submit these scores instead of an SAT. 

ACT- ACT is an acronym for American College Testing. This test is an alternative test to the SAT.

IB – IB is an acronym for the International Baccalaureate Program. This is a secondary school curriculum offered at many international schools throughout the world. Your school may not offer this curriculum.

AP- AP is an acronym for the Advanced Placement examinations. This is s U.S.-based examination program offered at high school in the U.S. and in U.S. patterned high school outside the U.S.

Transcripts- transcripts is the word used in the U.S. for your academic record for at least the last three years of your education. This includes of all academic coursework for the last three years including certificates of completion, external examination results and/or diplomas.

Extra-curricular activities – many colleges, including Flagler College, will ask you to tell us what activities you have been involved with in the last four years. We are especially interested in activities where you have made a significant contribution or held a leadership role.

GPA – GPA is an acronym for Grade Point Average. In the United States, we use a 4.0 scale where 4.0 is the highest. Most U.S. university grading systems follow this scheme:
A = 4.0 (excellent)

B =3.0 (good)

C = 2.0 (average)

D = 1.0 (poor, but passing)

F = 0 (failure)

Your secondary school system may or may not calculate a GPA. Do not be concerned if they do not calculate a GPA or if your grading system is on another scale, we will calculate it ourselves.

Class Rank - This is a calculation used by many secondary schools in the U.S. that assigns a numerical rank to each student in relation to his/her position in class. It is based on academic performance alone. For example, the student who has the highest grades in the class is ranked 1. The ranks is listed as a fraction like 1/105 students, or can be a percent (top 5%, 10%, 30% etc.) or in quartiles. You may want to discuss this with you college counselor or your head of school to see if your school calculates class rank.

Deadline – deadlines for applications is the latest date by which you need to submit all the required documents for each student. You can submit documents any time after you apply and prior to the deadline. All documents do not have to be submitted on the same day. Flagler College has an Early Decision deadline of November 1 and a Regular Decision deadline of March 1. Learn more about Early Decision and Regular Decision on the How to Apply page.

Need more explanations on terms used in U.S. Education?

Try these sites:

CollegePrep101

Universitylanguage.com

Contact Us

We are here to help! Reach out to our admissions office for any questions you may have about applying to Flagler. Office of Admissions | 1-800-304-4208 | 904-819-6220

internationaladmissions@flagler.edu