English Language Proficiency Requirement (TOEFL / IELTS / PTE)

All graduate study applicants, regardless of citizenship, whose native language is not English must demonstrate English language proficiency. To demonstrate your English language ability, you should submit an official Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language testing System (IELTS), or Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic score report to the Division of Graduate Studies. If you earned a U.S. Bachelor's or Master's degree, the English language testing requirement will be waived.

Minimum Scores:

The MBA, MSA and MSBA program minimum TOEFL, IELTS, and PTE Academic scores are:

TOEFL  (www.toefl.org)

  • 570 Total score on the paper based test
  • 88 Overall score on the internet based test (iBT TOEFL)


IELTS (www.ielts.org)

  • Overall band score of 6.5


PTE Academic (www.pearsonpte.com)

  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic overall score of 59.

TOEFL, IELTS, and PTE Academic scores should be sent to San Francisco State University directly by the testing service. Please note that TOEFL, IELTS, and PTE Academic scores are only valid for two years after the test date. Expired scores will not be considered. TOEFL score reports should be sent to SFSU directly by ETS (Institution Code: 4683).

IELTS score reports should be mailed by the exam center to:

International Graduate Admissions
San Francisco State University
1600 Holloway Avenue, ADM 250
San Francisco, CA 94132

For the PTE Academic test, when ordering test score reports, select San Francisco State University as an official test score recipient from the PTE database of institutions and programs that recognize the PTE.

Note: Some graduate programs require higher English language testing scores than the Division of Graduate Studies. Some graduate programs do not accept the IELTS or PTE Academic test in place of the TOEFL test. We recommend that you review your intended program's website for additional admission criteria.

The Division of Graduate Studies does not offer conditional admission to students who do not meet the minimum English language proficiency requirement. For students who do not meet the English language requirement at this time, we recommend you enroll in the American Language Institute (ALI) right here on campus and apply to graduate study when you do meet the English language requirement. Visit the American Language Institute (ALI) website for more information.