International Students

With students from more than 100 countries, Suffolk is truly an international campus.


International students from our partner institutions may apply as exchange visitors for one or two semesters. Individual international visiting students who wish to study at Suffolk for one or two semesters only are considered Study Abroad Boston students. These two categories have different application forms/criteria and information.

The University is authorized under federal law to enroll non-immigrant alien students. Prospective students who do not hold US citizenship must submit the following materials along with their admission application:

TOEFL and Other English Proficiency Exams

Applicants whose primary language is not English must be able to demonstrate proficiency in reading and writing English. To do so, applicants are expected to submit official TOEFL scores with their application materials.

A minimum score of 550/213/77 on the paper/computer/internet TOEFL exam is required for direct admission into a degree program. For students, who fall below the minimum score, evaluation of English proficiency is based on a combination of teacher recommendations, performance in mainstream English courses and/or evidence of English exposure. Students may be admitted conditionally after a complete review of the admission application. This includes a review of all academic course work and demonstrated exposure to English. (Application Essay included at the time the student applies will be used and academic recommendations.) In most cases standardized testing scores that range from 50-71 will be offered conditional admission in the English Language Institute at Suffolk. This program is a non-credit, year-long program that is structured to help students attain a score above 71 on the IBT so that they can begin degree courses with the university the following year. For consideration of direct admission into a degree program, students that submit the IELTS testing results, should have achieved a score of band 6.0 or higher.

Suffolk University also accepts the IELTS, CPE, CAE, and FCE.

Academic Records

International students are required to submit an official copy of all records of academic coursework, accompanied by an official English translation. This includes:

  • Official secondary school records with courses taken and grades received
  • Official records from each college or university attended showing the number of lecture and/or laboratory hours taken and grades received (for transfer applicants)
  • Official documents verifying the awarding of all secondary diplomas and/or academic certificates with the title and date awarded.

In certain instances, applicants may be required to have their credentials evaluated by a professional evaluation service.

Suggested agencies include:

Certification of Finances

International applicants must submit the Confidential Declaration and Certification of Finances form to show evidence of their ability to pay educational and living expenses while studying in the US. Please request this form from the Office of Undergraduate Admission, complete it, and submit it with the application for admission. The information provided must demonstrate ability to pay the annual cost of approximately $50,019 and be certified by a bank seal.

The Certificate of Finance should be sent well in advance of any deadlines. An I-20 form will not be issued unless this form has been received by the Undergraduate Admission Office.

Financial Assistance

International students are ineligible for all forms of federal and state financial aid, but they may apply for all University-funded employment programs.

Merit Scholarships

Merit scholarship assistance is available to international students. Students are automatically considered for merit scholarship funding when applying to Suffolk University for admission.

The student's transcript and standardized test (SAT/ACT or TOEFL) scores are considered in determining merit scholarship offers. Merit scholarship funding is limited. Entering freshmen interested in applying and being considered for merit scholarship funding should submit the admission application as early as possible.

Honors Program

International students who are entering as freshmen are eligible to apply to the University Honors Program. This program requires all application materials to be submitted to the Office of Undergraduate Admission by March 1, 2014.

There is no separate application for the honors program, but consideration is given only to those who have submitted their application and supplemental materials by the deadline above.

International Baccalaureate (IB) Policy

Students who have completed the full IB diploma with a total of 28 or more points are eligible for sophomore standing. Students who have received fewer than 28 points may receive 6 credits for each higher level examination passed with a score of 4, 5, 6, or 7. Students who are awarded IB credit may also be eligible for merit scholarships.

A-level Policy

Suffolk awards credit for scores of C and higher for candidates with A-level results. Five strong O-level passes are required for admission.