How much is the application fee?
The non-refundable fee is $100 USD. The fee can be paid by money order, check or online with a credit card. The non-refundable application fee for the spouse, sibling, parent, or child of a current UF student is $50.
How do I apply?
The fastest, easiest way is to apply online.
What do I need to do if transferring to the ELI from another school?
Go to your current international student advisor and request to transfer. Your advisor will obtain the correct form from our office. You must submit the required documents (see What is required to apply?). The ELI will contact your advisor to confirm the transfer date. We will mail an acceptance letter and acceptance packet to the address you provide. You may pick up your new I-20 at the ELI office when you arrive for the new semester.
What is required to apply?
Please see application requirements.
Do I need to have my diploma/transcripts translated or evaluated?
You do not need to have your diploma or transcripts translated or evaluated for admission to UF ELI. However, you must have this done for the University of Florida, Santa Fe College, or any other college or university in the United States.
How long does it take to get an I-20?
As soon as we receive all the required documents we will FedEx or DHL the I-20 to you. Depending on your location and FedEx or DHL services, the package should get to you in less than a week.
How do I get a visa?
Make an appointment with the US Embassy or Consulate nearest you. Make sure you take a copy of every document you have sent us regarding your admissions. If you are applying for an F-1 visa, be sure to have a receipt for payment of the SEVIS fee.
Do you offer scholarships?
The ELI does not offer scholarships or financial aid for incoming students. We do offer three merit-based scholarships for students already attending. Please see our Scholarships page for the description of the Jayne C. Harder Memorial Scholarship and the JC Casagrande Peace Scholarship, as well as the Dr. Valentina Komaniecka Memorial Scholarship. Contact the ELI for questions.
Can I use a credit card or cash to pay for tuition?
We accept a credit card (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express) online or in person. We also accept traveler’s checks and money orders. We do not accept cash or personal checks.
How do I get to the ELI from the airport?
The ELI does not provide airport transportation. Please check with your hotel for shuttle service from the Gainesville (GNV) airport. A bus is available from the Gainesville airport to UF campus (RTS website). Google “Taxis Gainesville FL” to get a list of available companies.
What if I arrive and the ELI office is closed? Where can I stay?
If you arrive early, especially during a holiday, the office will be closed and Gainesville will be very quiet! You must find your own hotel, and be sure to mention the University of Florida rate. If you know when you will be arriving, please call our office. We can help you find a good hotel.
Here is a list of several nearby Gainesville hotels that offer airport shuttle service from GNV: Best Western Gateway Grand, Hilton University of Florida Conference Center, Holiday Inn University Center, Spring Hill Suites, and Sweetwater Branch Inn Bed & Breakfast
This is the university hotel located on campus (does not offer shuttle service): Reitz Union Hotel
How can I find housing?
Please note that ELI students are not eligible for residence hall accommodations on campus (dormitories), and homestays are not common in Gainesville. The ELI does not arrange housing for ELI students directly. Find information about housing here.
Academic and Cultural Information
What will I do during Orientation Week?
Orientation week is a busy time. You will attend Welcome & Registration to sign enrollment documents, and Cultural, Health, and Academic Seminars. At these Seminars, you will receive information about the UF campus and life in Gainesville, insurance and health issues, transportation, shopping and entertainment. You will also take a placement exam, receive your class schedule, and meet your teachers and classmates.
Does the ELI provide health insurance?
Students are required to show proof of health insurance coverage for the entire ELI term (NOT month-by-month). You will not be allowed to attend classes without it. We strongly recommend that you buy insurance when you arrive at the university. You can learn more from the UF International Center. If you choose to buy insurance in your country, your plan must meet these requirements (PDF).
Is smoking allowed on UF campus?
No. UF is a tobacco-free campus, so if you smoke, you must leave campus to do so. UF has resources to help students quit smoking. You can find more information about those resources here.
Do I have to buy a computer?
You do not have to purchase a computer. If you do get a laptop, UF has free wireless internet all over campus. As an ELI student you will have access to all UF computer labs and libraries. Downtown Gainesville also offers free wireless internet, and several restaurants and coffee shops, and public libraries in Gainesville provide wireless service.
In which months does the program begin?
Please see Calendar & Fees for dates, tuition, and other fees.
You may start in January (Spring C), March (Spring B), May (Summer C), July (Summer B), August (Fall C) or October (Fall B).
Spring C (January – April) and Fall C (August – December) are 14-week semesters. Summer C (May – August) is 12 weeks.
Spring B (March – April), Summer B (July – August) and Fall B (October – December) are 7 week-semesters.
How does the ELI decide my level?
During Orientation Week you will take a placement exam. You will be tested on listening, grammar, and writing. You will be placed in the appropriate level for each skill.
What classes will I take?
Full-time students must take 23 hours of class at the ELI. You will take Grammar (5 hours a week), Listening/Speaking (8 hours a week), Reading/Writing (10 hours a week). You may also take additional elective classes like Pronunciation, Business English, Grammar for Writing, TOEFL and IELTS depending on your level and when enrollment allows.
Are there TOEFL and IELTS preparation courses available?
Sometimes. These courses are electives offered each semester when enrollment allows. The IELTS and TOELF courses are usually offered from 7:30 to 8:30am or from 5:00 to 7:00pm.
What activities do you offer?
Afternoon and weekend activities are provided by the Cultural Immersion Program (CIP). Typical afternoon activities are sports, conversation over coffee, and movies. Weekend trips include kayaking, canoeing and swimming, in Florida’s beautiful springs, picnics and barbeques, paintball, Walt Disney World, Busch Gardens, Universal Studios, and trips to beautiful beaches! Another popular activity is Volunteer Day. ELI students can participate in volunteering activities in the Gainesville community. The CIP also arranges for students to have one-on-one conversation partners. Follow the CIP on Instagram @UFLELI.
Are the afternoon and weekend activities included in the program fee?
Yes, all activities are covered in your tuition. However, park entrance fees (Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, etc.), some transportation fees, food, and souvenirs are not included.
Admission to University of Florida
Can I attend UF after the ELI?
You may attend UF after the ELI. However, admission to the ELI is NOT the same as admission to UF. You will not receive credit for the courses at the ELI. Please see UF Admissions for all admission requirements to the University of Florida.
Santa Fe College will waive the TOEFL requirement for students who reach the advanced levels at the ELI.Graduating with an A.S. or A.A. degree from Santa Fe College or other Florida community colleges guarantees admission to a public university in Florida. Please see SFC Admissions for more information about admission requirements to Santa Fe College.
Does UF offer conditional admission?
Typically for undergraduate courses, UF does not accept international students conditionally. Conditional admission is available on a departmental basis to the UF Graduate School. Students who exit the ELI do not have to submit English test scores to the Graduate School. Please see UF Graduate School for a list of UF departments which offer graduate degrees.
What are the required SAT, ACT, TOEFL, or GRE scores for admission to UF?
For undergraduate students, UF requires a combined score of at least 950 on the critical reading and mathematical reasoning sections of the SAT with a minimum score of 440 on each. On the ACT with writing test, a composite score of 19 is required with a minimum of 17 on the English subsection, a minimum of 19 on the math subsection and a minimum of 18 on the reading subsection. [Average scores for UF Freshman: High School GPA 4.0 – 4.4 (on a 4.0 scale), SAT 1210-1400, and ACT 26-31.] For more information, click here.
For graduate students, a TOEFL score of 550 (computer-based), or 80 iBT. For all other graduate test score requirements (GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT, etc.) students must contact the department directly. Successful completion of the ELI may be substituted for UF’s TOEFL requirement on a departmental basis. For more information, click here.
Does UF offer scholarships or financial aid for international students?
UF offers limited financial assistance for international undergraduates. Graduate departments may offer fellowships or scholarships, but you must contact the department directly to get specific information.