Jun 21, 2024  
2020-2021 Catalog 
2020-2021 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]


How to Register

Registering for classes at Florida SouthWestern State College is easy and convenient using Florida SouthWestern State College’s student online services. Students can also register for classes by visiting the registration counter at one of Florida SouthWestern State College’s three campuses or the Hendry/Glades Center. Accommodations for Students with Disabilities are available upon request (see Academics and Academic Policies Relating to Students).

Please refer to the Official College Calendar for important dates, including registration dates, late registration information, the add/drop period, as well as refund and withdrawal deadlines. The Official College Calendar is published in this Catalog and can also be found on the FSW website.

Placement testing is required for non-exempt students as described in Florida Statute 1008.30 prior to registration. Exempt students may elect to take placement testing which will greatly assist in providing advice for majors and first year coursework. Testing is used to determine placement in English, Mathematics, and Reading Courses (please see Testing Services, in the Enrollment Services section of the catalog , for more information).

By registering for classes, all students assume the responsibility for familiarizing themselves with and abiding by the regulations, rules, policies, and procedures of Florida SouthWestern State College.

Student Categories

  1. Full Time: A student enrolled in 12 credits or more during the Fall, Spring or Summer semesters, or six credits or more during a mini-semester, is considered to be a full-time student.
  2. Part Time: A student enrolled in fewer than 12 credits during the Fall, Spring or Summer semesters, or fewer than six credits during a mini semester, is considered to be a part-time student.
  3. Freshman: A student who has earned less than 30 college credits is considered to be a freshman.
  4. Sophomore: A student who has earned 30 but less than 60 college credits is considered to be a sophomore.
  5. Junior: A student who has earned 60 but less than 90 college credits is considered to be a junior.
  6. Senior: A student who has earned 90 or more credits prior to completing baccalaureate requirements is considered to be a senior.
  7. First-Time-in-College (FTIC): A degree-seeking student who has not previously attended a college or university and who is not transferring credit from another higher education institution is considered to be a First-Time-in-College student.
  8. Credit: A student who enrolls for college credit in a current session will be considered a credit student.
  9. Non-Credit: A students enrolled in Continuing Education courses, which are not offered for college credit, is considered a non-credit student.
  10. Audit: A student who enrolls for no credit in a course normally offered for credit, will be considered an audit student.
  11. Transient Students: A student who is currently enrolled and pursuing a degree at a public post-secondary institution and who enrolls in a course offered by a public post-secondary institution that is not the student’s degree granting institution.

College Requirement: Cornerstone Experience SLS 1515

The Cornerstone Experience course at Florida SouthWestern State College is an integrative and interdisciplinary course designed to help first-year students acquire critical thinking and decision-making skills that promote academic success. In this course, students will learn about college resources and requirements, explore career objectives and programs of study, establish relationships with mentoring faculty, and develop a support group among peers.

All incoming degree-seeking* students who have earned fewer than 30 credits are required to take and successfully complete SLS 1515 - Cornerstone Experience    in the first semester. Successful completion is defined as earning a “C” or better in the course.

*Students who are admitted directly to limited access programs are not required to take SLS 1515.  This applies to students whose first coursework at FSW occurs after limited access program admission or to students whose first coursework after three consecutive semesters of non-attendance occurs after limited access program admission.

Academic Course Load

A student may not take more than 18 credit hours during the Fall, Spring, or Summer semesters or nine credits during a mini-semester without the written permission of an Academic Advisor. Florida SouthWestern State College reserves the right to limit the number of credits a student can enroll in if the student has been placed on academic warning or suspension.

Registration, Fees, and Refunds

Priority Registration

Registration priority dates for degree and certificate seeking (Veterans, Honors, Housing and Athletes) students are established each term and are published in the Academic Calendar. This includes Early College (Dual Enrollment), Transient and transfer students.

Open Registration

Open registration is for all active degree-seeking, certificate, and non-degree-seeking student. However, degree seeking and certificate students register prior to Open Registration.

State Employee Fee Waiver

Pursuant to Section 1009.26 of the Florida Statutes, students may request permission to register for up to six credit hours without payment of tuition if they qualify as state employees under the guidelines. State employees must register between the first day and the last day of the “add/drop” period for classes on a space available basis only. Some courses may be full and therefore unavailable. Students must pay any applicable special fees.

Registration Restrictions

The following registration restrictions are in place that could restrict a Florida SouthWestern State College student’s ability to register for classes:

  1. Courses requiring the instructor’s consent cannot be added to students’ schedules until the instructor’s consent is obtained.
  2. Students who owe balances from prior terms must pay the outstanding balances before they are permitted to register.
  3. Students on academic probation must see their Academic Advisor prior to registering.
  4. Students who have not attended any classes for a year must seek readmission through the Office of Admissions.
  5. Students who do not meet the published prerequisites for courses will not be allowed to register for those courses.
  6. Students are not permitted to register for more than one section of a course per term.

Payment of Registration Fees

Registration fees are assessed at the time of registration and must be paid by the payment due date. Registration is not finalized until all registration fees are paid. The student’s registration may be canceled if payment is not made by the due date. Registration fees for courses added by the student after payment of initial registration fees must be paid for by the new payment due date, or the student must drop the course(s) by the last day to drop with a refund. Students who fail to drop an unpaid course are billed by the Business Office for all applicable fees and are responsible for payment of those fees.

Schedule Adjustment Period

The schedule adjustment period is the time between the first instructional weekday of an academic term and the last day that students are permitted to add a class, change sections of a course, drop a course without financial penalty, or change from credit to audit or audit to credit. After the “Registration Add” date has closed, additions to approved schedules will not be permitted.

Refund Policy

Refunds of matriculation, tuition and special fees are made only if the student drops the class by the Add/Drop deadline as published in the College Calendar.

In the case of extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control, and that occur prior to the midpoint of the semester, a student may appeal for an exception to the College Refund Policy (College Operating Procedure, COP 03-1711) by submitting a Request for a Late Drop or a Late Withdrawal to the Office of the Registrar.  Appeals should fully explain the extenuating circumstances and include supporting third party documentation. In all cases, the situation must have interrupted the student’s ability to attend class(es) for a substantial length of time and/or to complete the semester. The Request for a Late Drop or a Late Withdraw Form is available online, or in the Registrar’s Office, and must be received no later than one year from the last day of the term for which the tuition requested to be refunded was paid to the College.

Financial Aid Recipients Note

If a Refund Appeal is approved for a recipient of federal and/or state financial aid (grants and loans), and the student’s original course registration is canceled and/or tuition liability is eliminated as a result, federal/state regulations dictate that all financial aid previously applied to the student’s College account and/or disbursed to the student in the form of an over-payment refund must be returned to the respective loan/grant program. This action may result in an outstanding balance on the student account; in certain scenarios, that (new) balance owed may be in an amount greater than was incurred via the initial registration/aid disbursement.

A student who is withdrawn from a class or classes because of administrative action, except for disciplinary reasons, is entitled to a full refund of matriculation, tuition, and special fees.

A student who is withdrawn from a class or classes for disciplinary reasons is not entitled to a refund of matriculation, tuition, and special fees. Florida SouthWestern State College reserves the right to apply any refund due to the student’s account if the student has outstanding financial obligations.

Adding, Dropping, Auditing or Withdrawing from a Course

Adding or Dropping Courses

Students can add or drop courses, or change sections through the last day to do so, as published in the Official College Calendar. Students are financially liable for all courses that they are registered in after the last day to drop. Although the College may drop students for non-payment, it is, ultimately, a student’s responsibility to drop any course for which they enroll but do not plan to attend.


After the “Registration Add” date has closed, additions to approved schedules will not be permitted. Exceptions will be granted only by petition. Petitions will be approved only on the basis of clearly documented clerical error or third party documentation demonstrating unusual and extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control. Being dropped for non-payment is not considered an extenuating circumstance. Petition for Reinstatement will only be considered the week immediately following the close of registration and require the signatures of the course instructor and the Dean. Students having approved petitions to “late add” are required to pay at the time the class is added.

Auditing a Course

Students who intend to register for a college credit course for which they do not want college credit may register as audit students with the registration office. This cannot be done via online registsration. Students are not allowed to change from audit status to credit status, or from credit status to audit status, once the last day to change audit/credit status has passed. Audit registration fees are the same as for credit. Audit students may participate in class activities but are not required to take examinations and will not receive a grade or credit.


A student can withdraw from any course by submitting the necessary form to the Office of the Registrar, or withdrawing on line, before the last day to withdraw, as published in the Official College Calendar. Withdrawals after that date may be granted only through established Florida SouthWestern State College procedures (please see the Course Withdrawal Policy in Academics and Acadmic Policies, for more information).

Please note: Students who officially withdraw from a course or courses before the withdrawal deadline receive a grade of a “W.” Students are limited to two withdrawals per course. Upon the third attempt, the student is not permitted to withdraw from the course and must receive a grade for the course.(Florida State Board of Education Rule 6A-14.0301)

Withdrawing from a course or courses may affect a student’s financial aid status, may result in the student having to pay the third attempt course surcharge to retake the course, will not generate any refunds, and may affect the student’s anticipated graduation date.

Students should speak with their professor before withdrawing from a course and should meet with an Academic Advisor to discuss the impact of a withdrawal on the student’s education plan. Withdrawing from a course will increase the cost of your education and may affect your financial aid status or Bright Futures. Students also should speak with a Financial Aid Specialist to discuss the impact of a withdrawal on the student’s financial aid.

Late Withdrawals

Florida SouthWestern State College requires students to withdraw from any courses by the published withdraw deadline. If students face extenuating circumstances and wish to withdraw from a course after the deadline, they may petition the Registrar’s Office by submitting a “Late Drop/Late Withdrawal Form” which is available at the Registrar’s Office or on the website. Requests for withdrawals after the published last day to withdraw must be supported by third party documentation and approved by both the instructor and appropriate Academic Dean. Decisions are based on the extraordinary nature of the student’s circumstances and the timeliness of the petition. The petition does not alter or waive a student’s responsibility for paying tuition and other fees. Students who stop attending courses without officially withdrawing or without an approved Registration Form will receive a grade of “F.”

Class Cancellations

Florida SouthWestern State College attempts to honor its commitment to provide the classes scheduled for a given term. However, at times and usually due to low enrollment, it may be necessary to cancel a class. In such cases every effort will be made to find an appropriate alternate class for the student.

Student Online Services Access (Portal)

Florida SouthWestern State College students can register and pay for classes, view grades, financial aid and transcript information, and obtain additional services by accessing student online services. Students must use their Banner ID number, which is a nine-digit code beginning with @ and followed by eight numbers, and their Personal Identification Number (PIN), which is initially the student’s date of birth in a six-digit format (mmddyy), to access the student online services. Students are required to change their initial PIN to a unique PIN the first time they access the student online services.

Enrollment Verification, Final Grade reports, Grade corrections

Enrollment Verifications

Students needing official verification of their enrollment should submit a completed Enrollment Verification Request to the Office of the Registrar at least one week before the verification is needed. Enrollment Verification Requests should include the specific information needed, including actual dates of attendance, full-time/part-time status, residency status, etc. Enrollment Verification Requests are only processed for the current or previous semesters. Future semester enrollment verifications are only processed after the last day to drop with a refund for that semester. Enrollment Verification Requests are not processed for any student or alumnus with an obligation to Florida SouthWestern State College such as unpaid fees, overdue loans, library books, audiovisual equipment, or whose admission records are not complete. Students are encouraged to contact the National Student Clearinghouse for official enrollment verifications.

Final Grade Reports

Final grades are available to students after the end of each semester through Florida SouthWestern State College’s student online services (Portal) or through the Florida Virtual Campus at www.floridashines.org. Florida SouthWestern State College does not mail final grade reports.

Grade Corrections

A request for a grade correction must be made during the semester immediately following the semester in which the incorrect grade was assigned. The instructor who taught the class and the appropriate Academic Dean must approve the grade correction. No grade will be changed after a degree is awarded.

Petitions, Appeal of an Academic Petition


The petitions process is designed to review, based on a student’s written request, Florida SouthWestern State College policies or procedures related to:

  1. Exception to the Maximum Attempts Policy;
  2. Exception to the Multiple Attempt Course Surcharge; or
  3. Exception to Registration Polices or deadlines.

Students begin the process by completing an official Petition Form available from the Office of the Registrar, The Office of Advising, or the Campus Director’s Office. Completed petitions must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar by the end of the semester immediately following the semester in which the event occurred. Petitions more than one academic year old are not considered.

The Office of the Registrar makes a determination based on the information collected by the Registrar’s Office or provided by the student and may request a meeting with the student for further information or clarification. If necessary, additional college administrators responsible for the area of the petition may be involved in the decision. The Office of the Registrar will inform the student of the decision by Florida SouthWestern State College email. Petitions without third party supporting documentation will not be considered.

Appeal of an Academic Petition

A student has a right to appeal a decision made on an academic petition. A student wishing to appeal a decision must submit a written appeal request and return it to the Office of the Registrar or the Campus Director. The appeal is forwarded to the College Registrar.  A copy of the original petition is automatically part of the subsequent appeal. An appeal is not simply a review of the original petition decision but a request to reverse the original decision. The student must supply new, relevant, previously-undisclosed information, or present an argument as to why the original petition decision should be reversed. For an appeal to be successful, new information must be critical to the case, and new consideration or arguments should prove the student’s case conclusively. A meeting for additional information and/or clarification may be requested. The College Registrar has the responsibility for making the final academic decision for Florida SouthWestern State College.

Release of student information, Student Holds, Transcripts

Release of Student Information

Florida SouthWestern State College may, without the written consent of the student, release information from the student’s education record to a court of competent jurisdiction in compliance with a court order of that court or to the attorney of record pursuant to a lawfully issued subpoena, provided that in advance of compliance with the court order or subpoena Florida SouthWestern State College notified the student. A student who objects to the release of his or her records must file a motion to invalidate the court order or subpoena and provide Florida SouthWestern State College with copies of the relevant legal documents. All releases of student information are made in compliance with state and federal regulations.

Student Holds

Holds are placed on a student’s account, records, transcript, grades, diploma, or registration if the student does not fulfill all financial or other obligations to the College. Before a hold can be released by the appropriate College office, students must satisfy any outstanding obligations to the college and/or office.


Students needing an official Florida SouthWestern State College transcript can request one using our online Transcript Ordering Services through Credential Solutions.  Official transcripts may also be requested via Florida SouthWestern State College’s student online services or directly through the Credentials Solutions link on the FSW website.  Credential Solutions will require the following information to process a transcript request:  full name, correct mailing address, social security number, date of birth, name and address of recipient, and payment.  If the student is not automatically authorized, an additional authorization form with the student’s signature and date will be required. Transcript requests are not processed for any student or alumnus with an obligation to Florida SouthWestern State College such as unpaid fees, overdue loans, library books, audiovisual equipment, or whose admission records are not complete. Students who attended Florida SouthWestern State College prior to 2001 may have a non-electronic (microfiche) record.  The need to convert the record to our electronic system may delay the transcript process an additional 3-5 working days. There is a $5 charge for an official transcript and rush and International delivery is available at an additional cost. Unofficial transcripts may be obtained via Florida SouthWestern State College’s student online services.

Records And Registration

Transfer of Credits

Florida SouthWestern State College has a number of articulation agreements ensuring the transfer of credit from other schools, colleges, and universities into Florida SouthWestern State College programs and from Florida SouthWestern State College programs into programs at other colleges and universities. The Florida Department of Education also has agreements ensuring transfer of credit across state colleges and universities. These agreements are summarized here.

High School and Technical Centers

In accordance with the Florida Department of Education, Florida SouthWestern State College provides articulation opportunities to high school and technical center graduates from Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Hendry, and Glades School Districts.. Florida SouthWestern State College and these districts are partners in the Career Pathways program, which offers students the opportunity to focus on technical high school electives that will help train them for high-skill, high-wage occupations. While high school or technical center students are preparing for careers and postsecondary education, they can earn college credit that may be applied toward an Associate in Science degree at Florida SouthWestern State College.

Articulated credit may be awarded to the eligible student who meets the following criteria:

  1. The student must have completed an approved technical program of study (at least three high school courses or an earned technical center certificate);
  2. The student must be currently enrolled and seeking an Associate in Science degree in a correlating* discipline at Florida SouthWestern State College. The student must successfully meet all requirements that apply to associate degree seeking students as stated in the Florida SouthWestern State College Catalog;
  3. The student must successfully complete a minimum of 12 credit hours at Florida SouthWestern State College.

*A correlating program is one in which the coursework the student proposes to articulate in aligns with the degree program in which the student proposes to enroll. For example, networking technology courses correlate to the AS in Network Systems Technology, but would not correlate to the AS in Accounting Technology.

In addition, the State of Florida has approved statewide articulation agreements for transfer to an Associate in Science degree for students who complete an approved technical program of study and earn a technical center certificate. The State of Florida has approved awarding college credit for certain qualifying industry certifications. Please note: the State of Florida is continuing to develop these articulation agreements.

Credit from Military Service Schools

Note:  Joint Services Transcripts/Military transcripts MUST be sent to Florida SouthWestern State College and be evaluated before a student receives any benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), regardless of transferability of courses on their transcript(s).

Florida SouthWestern State College follows the guidelines in Florida State Board Rule 6A10.024 (and Veteran’s Affairs) for awarding credit for Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES) Subject Standardized Tests (DSST) exams. FSW grants credit for the United States Armed Forces Institute (USAFI) and College Level Examination Program (CLEP). Florida SouthWestern State College is a Servicemembers Opportunity College (SOC) and uses the American Council on Education (ACE) guidelines in evaluating military learning experiences.


Florida SouthWestern State College may award college credit for military service school training in accordance with the following conditions and stipulations:

  1. The person must be applying or transferring as a degree seeking student.
  2. The person making the request must submit DD214 Form or DD295 (if the applicant is currently enlisted).
  3. In addition to the documents required in (2) above, U.S. Army Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) schools/courses must provide a Joint Services Transcript regardless of possible transferability of course work to the Registrar’s Office at Florida SouthWestern State College to be evaluated and kept in the student’s permanent file.

DANTES Subject Standardized Tests (DSSTs)

Florida SouthWestern State College will award college credits for qualifying DANTES Subject Standardized Tests (DSSTs) examination scores per FAC 6A-10 guidelines and the Articulation Coordinating Committee Credit-By-Exam Equivalents adopted September 19, 2001, as follows:

Since a grade of “S” for satisfactory will be assigned, no grade points will be assigned for credits awarded through the DSST Program. http://www.fldoe.org/core/fileparse.php/5421/urlt/0078391-acc-cbe.pdf (see DSST Examination Program.)

Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC) 

As part of the Army Training and Doctrine Command, the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC) provides resident instruction at the Presidio of Monterey in two dozen languages.  Florida SouthWestern State College awards college credit for qualifying DLIFLC examinations based on standards recommended by the Florida Department of Education Articulation Coordinating Committee. http://www.fldoe.org/core/fileparse.php/5421/urlt/0078391-acc-cbe.pdf  (See Defense Language Proficiency Test).

Transfer Information and Policies

Transfer Classification

A student is classified as a transfer student if he/she has previously registered at any college or university prior to Florida SouthWestern State College, regardless of the amount of time spent in attendance or credit earned. Students may transfer credit from other institutions into Florida SouthWestern State College; however, to be awarded a certificate or degree, at least 25% of the program or certificate credit must be earned at Florida SouthWestern State College.

Applicants who plan to earn a degree or certificate at Florida SouthWestern State College (FSW) must provide official transcripts from all previously attended colleges or universities. Though not required for admission, military transcripts must be submitted to the Registrar’s Office for possible credit and are required by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to be evaluated and on file to receive Military Educational Benefits. Official Transcripts should be mailed from the institution holding the record to Florida SouthWestern State College, Office of the Registrar, Thomas Edison (Lee) Campus or sent via secure electronic transmission from the institution holding the record within the first semester of enrolling. Faxed transcripts or those emailed directly from students to FSW are not considered official. Transcripts will not be evaluated until transcripts are received from all institutions (including official examination scores from CLEP, AP, IB, and AICE).  Evaluations are generally completed within 5 business days following receipt of all documents, but evaluations may take up to 10 business days during peak periods. Once all transcripts are received and evaluated, transfer credit appears on the FSW transcript. Unofficial transcripts can be viewed using the student portal. 

Acceptance of Military Credits

Eligible members of the United States Armed Forces must have an official copy of their Joint Services Transcript (JST)/military transcripts forwarded to the Registrar’s Office. As required by the VA to receive educational benefits, Joint Services Transcripts/military transcripts will be reviewed for possible credit according to the recommendations of the American Council on Education (ACE) and certified to the VA.

Acceptance of Transfer Credits from Regionally Accredited Institutions

All credits earned at other colleges or universities accredited by one of the seven regional accrediting bodies will be recorded as transfer credit and placed on the student’s permanent record (transcript). Courses will be equated to a similar course or an appropriate unclassified elective. For students pursuing a baccalaureate degree, all earned credits will be recorded at the appropriate level (i.e., freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior level). 

Acceptance of Transfer Credits from Non-Regionally Accredited Institutions

Florida SouthWestern State College may accept credits from institutions that are not regionally accredited in accordance with the State of Florida K-16 Articulation Agreement, which recognizes courses approved in connection with the Florida Department of Education Statewide Course Numbering System.

Acceptance of credits from non-regionally accredited institutions of higher education will be based upon evaluation and recommendation from the Florida SouthWestern State College instructional department responsible for the course subject area(s). Credits awarded at institutions not regionally accredited may be accepted by Florida SouthWestern State College and placed on the transcript if the credits represent collegiate level coursework relevant to the program of study and course credit and level of instruction, resulting in student competencies that are at least equivalent to those of students enrolled in comparable instruction at Florida SouthWestern State College. The following factors will be considered in determining whether courses are transferable and, if so, how they will be recorded.

  1. 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.;
  2. Qualifications of the faculty member(s) providing the instruction;
  3. Age of credits;
  4. Recommendations through other established credit assessment bodies (e.g., ACE);
  5. Institutional accreditation via other professional assessment/accrediting bodies (e.g., AMA, NLN, state agency);
  6. Secondary documentation of course competencies (e.g., professional certification, standardized exam scores, etc.).

School of Education Bachelor Degree Programs

Students may transfer equivalent courses as determined by the Statewide Course Numbering System. However, Florida SouthWestern State College reserves the right to deny common course number credit for courses in which practicum or internship components reside. Students must fulfill all required competencies, standards, skills and dispositions within the  program and may be required to submit additional documentation to support completion requirements.

College/University Transcripts from Outside the United States or U.S. Territories

Students must have an English translation and course-by-course evaluation performed, at the students’ expense, by a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) www.naces.org.

Recording Transfer Credits on the Student’s Permanent Record (Transcript)

While evaluating credits, Florida SouthWestern State College reserves the right to delay the recording of transfer credits on the student’s permanent record. Final award or posting of credits to the student’s permanent record may be contingent upon successful completion of one or more of the following requirements:

  1. Florida SouthWestern State College residency requirement;
  2. Successful completion of higher-level courses in the student’s program of study;
  3. Successful completion of subsequent courses in the subject/course sequence;
  4. Demonstration of specific lab/clinical skills or other applied competencies;
  5. Additional supplemental independent/directed study in the subject area;
  6. Presentation of a portfolio of coursework substantiating the competencies;
  7. Verification of faculty credentials at the transferring institution.

Once accepted, transfer credits will be recorded on the student’s permanent record as externally awarded and will indicate the original institution awarding the credit. Credits recorded as transfer credits are not guaranteed to meet specific degree requirements for the student’s program. The College may limit the number of transfer credits applicable towards the student’s degree. Where appropriate, an equivalent Florida SouthWestern State College course number may also be indicated. When Florida SouthWestern State College does not offer an equivalent course, or if the course differs substantively from the suggested Florida SouthWestern State College course, the transfer credits may be listed on the transcript as an elective course. Final determination of how transfer credits may apply to a specific degree program lies with the Academic Dean, in consultation with the Faculty Chair and Registrar.

Appeal of Transfer Credit Denial

A student may appeal the denial of transfer credits by submitting a Credit Review Request to the Credit Review Committee. Credits in question will be reviewed by the Academic Dean and an area of experts from the instructional department normally responsible for the subject matter in question. Appeals must be accompanied by course descriptions, faculty credentials and syllabi. All decisions are forwarded to the student in writing via their FSW email account. Florida SouthWestern State College reserves the right to deny common course number credit for courses in which practicum or internship components reside.

State University System Articulation Agreement

Florida law provides that Associate in Arts degree graduates of a Florida state/community college must be granted admission to an upper-division program offered by a state university or college, unless that program has been designated limited access (see Transfer Guarantees). If limited access minimum standards are not met, universities may deny both acceptance into the desired program and acceptance into the university. The law gives priority to state/community college Associate in Arts graduates over out-of-state students for admission to a state university. Florida state/community colleges have similar articulation agreements with the Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida (ICUF).

Effective Fall 2000, all graduates of an Associate in Science degree program listed in the Statewide Articulation Manual shall be granted admission into a corresponding baccalaureate program at the state universities or colleges, except for limited-access programs and those requiring specific grades in particular courses for admission. The Florida Department of Education stipulates the integrity of the general education program will be recognized by all public institutions of higher education in Florida. Any questions about the general education program should be addressed to an Academic Advisor.

Transfer Guarantees

Florida College System Associate in Arts graduates are guaranteed the following rights when transferring to a state university under the Statewide Articulation Agreement (State Board of Education Rule 6A-10.024):

  1. Admission to one of the state universities or colleges, except to limited-access programs which have additional admission requirements.
  2. Acceptance of at least 60 credit hours by the state universities toward the baccalaureate degree.
  3. Transfer of equivalent courses under the Statewide Course Numbering System (SCNS).
  4. Acceptance by the state universities of credit earned in accelerated programs (e.g., CLEP, Advanced Placement, Accelerated Programs, International Baccalaureate).
  5. No additional general education core requirements.
  6. Equal opportunity with native university students to enter limited-access programs.

The universities determine the courses and prerequisites that must be taken to receive a baccalaureate degree. Although all credits earned toward an Associate in Arts degree will transfer to a university, not all credits earned will meet program prerequisites or course requirements for a baccalaureate degree. Therefore, students must assume responsibility for knowing the course requirements of the intended program and taking the appropriate course(s) while pursuing the Associate in Arts degree.

Excess Hours

Section 1009.286, Florida Statutes, establishes an “excess hour” surcharge for a student seeking a baccalaureate degree at a state university. It is critical that students, including those entering Florida colleges, are aware of the potential for additional course fees.

Excess hours are defined as hours that go beyond 120% of the hours required for a baccalaureate degree program. For example, if the length of the program is 120 credit hours, the student may be subject to an excess hour surcharge for any credits attempted beyond 144 credit hours (120 x 120%).

All students whose educational plan may include earning a bachelor’s degree should make every effort to enroll in and successfully complete those courses that are required for their intended major on their first attempt. Florida college students intending to transfer to a state university should identify a major or “transfer program” early and be advised of admission requirements for that program, including the approved common prerequisites. Course withdrawals and/or repeats, as well as enrollment in courses non-essential to the intended major, may contribute to a potential excess hours surcharge.

Transfer Services

Students who plan to transfer to an upper level college or university program are encouraged to consult with an Academic Advisor concerning transfer requirements. Students should also reference the catalog and list of requirements from the institution they expect to attend. Information provided at FloridaShines.org  offers a variety of student services and resources to help students succeed in postsecondary endeavors and prepare for careers.Students anticipating transfer should begin a preliminary application to the college of their choice in the Fall session of their sophomore year. Students who plan to transfer to Florida SouthWestern State College bachelor programs should meet with a Student Success Advisor.