Certificate Program Requirements

Required Units

Credit-bearing courses carry a unit value. You must enroll in at least 12 academic units in your program by the first day of each quarter to maintain your student visa status. At least 8 units must be in the classroom and no more than one online class.

We recommend you enroll early. Courses fill quickly and if you are unable to get into the required minimum of 12 units, you jeopardize your F-1 visa status. You can take advantage of the “early bird” discount if you enroll in the course at least 30 days before the start date.

All courses must be taken ‘For Credit/Letter Grade’ to count towards the 12 units required to maintain F-1 visa status.

Advanced Standing and Course Waivers

In your first quarter, you can petition to have required or elective courses waived if you have completed the coursework elsewhere. You must submit certified academic transcripts to your academic advisor. If a waiver is granted, you will be credited with units of advanced standing allowing you to finish your program sooner. You will be able to discuss advanced standing and course waivers with your certificate program advisor.

Required Grades—Grade Point Average (GPA)

Certificate students must pass all required courses and maintain a minimum GPA as required by your certificate program. The minimum GPA varies for each program. Contact the certificate program advisor for the GPA you need to maintain in your program or view the grading details on the Grading Scale.

Earned F grades do not count toward your GPA so you must re-take any course in which you get a grade of F.  Your allotted time for study remains the same. So, you may have to skip a vacation quarter to complete your program on time and bring your GPA up to the required minimum.

Supplemental English Courses

International applicants are required to submit the minimum TOEFL, IELTS or iTEP Academic score required for their certificate program.

Students who are admitted with the minimum score but have a TOEFL iBT score of less than 100, an IELTS overall band score of less than 7.0, or a score of less than 5.0 on the iTEP Academic are required to take supplemental English courses along with the certificate program courses.

You will be placed into English courses according to the score you received:

English Language Test Scores Required UCLA Extension ESL Courses

TOEFL: 83-90

IELTS: 6.5 with 6.0 or below in writing

iTEP Academic: 4.5

ESL X433B and ESL X433C

TOEFL: 91-99

IELTS: 6.5 with 6.5 or above in writing

iTEP Academic: 5.0


TOEFL: 100 or above

IELTS: 7.0 or above

None required

Students who are admitted to their certificate program by completing Level 107 or higher in the Academic Intensive English Program (AIEP) are required to pass ESL X433C.

Each English course counts toward the 12 units of courses that you are required to take each quarter as an F-1 student. English courses are worth four units each. You may enroll in one English course per quarter plus two certificate program courses. For further inquiry about supplemental English courses, contact the American Language Center (ALC) at alc@uclaextension.edu or (310) 825-9068.

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