As a Christian institution providing higher education in the liberal arts and selected professional areas, Southwestern Adventist University welcomes applications from students who will share the vision, values, and ideals of the university.  And whose desire for a successful education experience will enable them to commit to the total program of learning, development and service. The university is committed to equality and does not consider race, gender, age, disability, color, or national and ethnic origin in determining qualifications for admissions.

Admission is granted to applicants who meet admissions requirements and who will uphold the standards of the university in accordance to the Christian principles as taught by the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

Students are advised that admission is contingent upon the integrity of the information submitted to the University. Discovery of false information could be grounds for withdrawal of the offer of admission or for immediate dismissal. Dismissal would result in forfeiture of all charges paid and academic credits earned.

Freshman Admission

To receive priority processing and scholarship consideration, applications should be submitted by March 15 for the fall semester and November 15 for the spring semester.

Regular admission requirements

Transcript: submit one of the following

  • Official secondary school transcript with a grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.50 (on a 4.00 scale)
  • General Education Development (GED) test average score of 500 with no score below 450
  • Home school transcript with courses, grades, and dates of completion with a state-issued certificate of secondary school completion if applicable.
  • General Certificate of Secondary Education: must have five (5) passes or more

Test Scores: one of the following

  • ACT minimum composite of 17
  • SAT minimum of 830 for mathematics and critical reading

Early Admission Requirements

  • Official secondary school transcript with a GPA of 2.75 or above

ACT or SAT will be required to be submitted no later than June 15 for merit scholarship and enrollment in fall. Students whose test scores do not meet the minimum requirement may have their admission status changed from Early to CORE Enrichment.

Recommended high school curriculum

  • 4 units of English
  • 3 units of mathematics to include Algebra I and Geometry
  • 2 units in physical science and biology
  • 4 units of social studies

The University encourages a more rigorous high school program that will increase a student's opportunities for academic success.

  • 4 units of English
  • 4 units of mathematics, especially an advanced unit during the senior year
  • 4 units of science to include both physical and natural science
  • 4 units of social studies
  • 2 units of one foreign (non-English) language

Applicants taking Advanced Placement classes should consult the AP examination program in the Academic section of this Bulletin.

CORE Enrichment

Students who wish to enroll at Southwestern, but fail to meet one of the two minimum admission requirements (GPA or SAT/ACT) must participate in CORE Enrichment.  Learning takes place in a three-week session prior to the beginning of the freshman year and provides developmental learning support in the areas of math, reading, and writing.  At the end of the session, student progress will be assessed and students will receive new course placements for fall semester.  CORE Enrichment includes one (1)  which will apply toward the requirements for a degree.  For information on session fee refer to Bulletin section on Finances.

Transfer Admission

To receive priority processing and scholarship consideration, applications should be submitted by March 15 for the fall semester and November 15 for the spring semester.

Transfer Admission Requirements

  • Official transcripts of all college/universities attended with a GPA of 2.0
  • Students with less than 24 credits will need to submit ACT/SAT scores and proof of secondary school completion.

Academic credit earned from regionally accredited colleges and universities will be accepted as transfer credit subject to the following guidelines:

  • Courses with grades of C- or higher will transfer
  • Even though credit hours are transferable, the hours may not necessarily apply toward a particular degree program or general education requirements
  • All courses taken at a community college transfer as lower-division hours only
  • Courses considered technical, developmental/remedial, continuing education, co-operative education, extension, English as a Second Language, and non-credit classes will not transfer
  • Transcripts submitted from non-accredited institutions are evaluated on a course by course basis
  • Transcripts from universities outside the United States must be evaluated for the student by an independent evaluation service.  Southwestern recommends the use of World Evaluation Services

Transfer students who have not completed the general education mathematics requirement and/or the freshman composition requirement prior to enrollment at the University should submit the ACT or SAT for math placement prior to registering for classes.  An SAT math score of 500 or an ACT math score of 21 is a prerequisite for MATH 110.  An SAT critical reading score of 450 or an ACT English score of 17 is a prerequisite for ENGL 121.

Applicants who do not meet the published requirements may be considered for admission on academic probation.  A letter of intent to succeed along with two references need to be submitted to the Office of Admissions for consideration by the Admissions Committee.

Admission to the Fire Science Program

1.  Meet all admission requirements for enrollment at Southwestern Adventist University.

2.  Complete all steps in the Fire Science Application Process.

3.  Complete all Fire Science pre-requisites:

            a.  Minimum score of 11 on the Nelson Denny

                        Students scoring minimums may enter the program on a probationary basis and must take RDNG 021.

            b.  Minimum SAT score of 450 in Critical Reading or ACT score of 17 in English

                        Students scoring minimums may enter the program on a probationary basis and must take ENGL 021.

            c.  Minimum of 500 SAT Math or 21 ACT Math

                        Students scoring below minimums may enter the program on a probationary basis and must take MATH 013.

            d.  Minimum score of 70 on the Computer Proficiency Test

                        Students scoring below 70 may enter the program on a probationary basis and must take CSIS 102.

            e.  Minimum high school GPA of 2.75

                        Transfer students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5.

Admission to the Nursing Program

All Application materials must be submitted, to the Admissions Office, by August 15, application deadline. Late applications and incomplete files will not be considered.

  1. Apply Online to Southwestern Adventist University at
  2. Obtain three professional reference letters from teachers, employers, and/or church pastor, which attest to professional competence, scholastic ability, emotional stability, and physical health. Send completed forms to the Admissions Office.
  3. Send official transcripts from all schools attended(high school, colleges and/or universities) to the Southwestern Adventist University Office of Admissions.
  4. Complete and send in all health records:(physical and health record forms are available at

    1. Physician’s Report of Physical Examination
    2. Proof of current immunizations or positive titer as required by the State of Texas (Tdap, MMR, Varicella, Hepatitis B, Meningitis, Influenza)
    3. Current TB Test (negative PPD yearly or chest xray every three years)
    4. Current CPR for the Healthcare Provider
  5. Successfully complete at least 49 semester hours of pre-nursing requirements, including courses in progress.
  6. Pass the HESI Nursing Admission Assessment Exam.
  7. Complete an interview with a nursing advisor.

Admission of International Students

The application deadline is May 1 for the fall semester and October 1 for the spring semester. The acceptance process must be completed by June 1 for the fall semester and November 1 for the spring semester to allow sufficient time for the student to obtain an I-20 and student visa.

In addition to meeting the freshman or transfer acceptance requirements, an international student must send official copies of all education documents that are validated by school or national officials.  These should be in the original language, accompanied by a certified English translation.

Students for whom English is not their native language must demonstrate English language proficiency by submitting one of the following:

  • Minimum score on the TOEFL * (Test of English as a Foreign Language) of 550 on the paper based test, or 225 on the computer based exam, or 75 on the internet based test or
  • IELTS 6.0
  • Minimum score of 80 on the Michigan * test or
  • Minimum score of 430 on the SAT critical reading component or
  • Minimum score of 17 on the ACT English section or
  • Transfer of a minimum of 24 semester credit hours from a college or university where English is the language of instruction

International Student I-20 process - F1 Visa

All students needing an I-20 must meet the following:

  • Be academically accepted
  • Submit legible copy of valid passport
  • Submit Certificate of Finance form that documents available funding to pay all expenses at Southwestern
  • Submit bank statements that give evidence of support to the financial claims on the certificate of finance form
  • Submit the international student deposit of $1000 which includes the $100 residence hall room deposit, and a $100 non-refundable processing fee.
  • Pre-payment of $6500* for undergraduate students or $5500* for ESL students

*If a student is not granted a visa and does not enroll, these funds will be returned minus the processing fee and any transaction fees.

As required by law all international student information is entered in the Student & Exchange Visitor System (SEVIS) when an I-20 is issued including when the student enrolls or does not enroll, falls below a full-load of classes (12 hours), changes their address or withdraws from the university.

Current immigration laws allow an international student with an F-1 Visa to work on campus up to 20 hours per week during the semester and up to 40 hours per week during vacations provided that the student is registered for the subsequent academic semester.  While there are many campus jobs available, Southwestern does not guarantee student employment.

Major medical insurance coverage must be purchased through Southwestern at registration. If you a student is already insured through the SDA system, he/she must provide documentation of equivalent insurance coverage. No insurance coverage refunds will be made after the second week of classes.

International students should not leave their homeland until they have the following:

  • A letter of acceptance from Southwestern Adventist University
  • An I-20 from Southwestern Adventist University
  • A valid passport and F-1 Visa for travel to the United States of America

English as a Second Language

Students must meet all University admission requirements for acceptance into the ESL program. Non-degree seeking ESL students may enter the ESL program without academic transcripts. However, if the student is a US citizen or permanent resident and is seeking federal aid they must be degree seeking.

Application Procedure for Admission

Prospective students can apply at no cost online at or request an application packet from the Enrollment Services Office at

  • Completed paper applications should be sent to the Admissions Office with an application fee of $25.00.
  • It is the responsibility of the student to request all transcripts and SAT or ACT scores to be sent to the Admissions Office at Southwestern Adventist University.  These will become the property of the University.
  • When all documents have been received, the application, transcripts and test scores will be reviewed and the Admissions Office will notify the applicant of the decision.

Commitment Deposit

New students who are accepted must pay a $50.00 Commitment Deposit in order to reserve their place in the entering class.  Priority deadline is May 15 for the fall semester and November 15 for the spring semester.  Commitment deposits are applied to the student's account and are none refundable if the student does not enroll.

Admission of Non-Degree Students

Special permission to register is extended to a variety of students wishing to take classes at the University. Academic transcripts are not required.  Tuition and fee charges for these students are provided in the financial section of this Bulletin.

Non-degree students desiring to change to degree status must apply and meet all regular admission requirements.

Audit. Students who plan only to audit a class must submit an application and a request for registration.

Individual Distance Learning (IDL).  Students taking on-line courses who do not wish to enroll for a degree program must submit an application and a request for registration.

High School Students. The University has several programs available to high school students to take University courses on-line, on-campus, or at a Union academy.  Students interested in these programs should contact the Office of Admissions and submit an application and a request for registration.

Teacher Certification. Individuals who need specific courses for certification must submit an application and a request for registration.  Students interested in certification should consult the Department of Education section in this Bulletin.

Transient. Students enrolled at another college or university who wish to take a course must submit an application, a guest letter from their college or university and a request for registration.

Readmission to the University

Students seeking readmission must reapply and submit official transcripts from any subsequent college or university to the Office of Admissions.

Returning students will be readmitted provided there are no academic sanctions, disciplinary actions, or financial holds restricting enrollment.  Students who are readmitted after two or more semesters of non-attendance must meet the degree requirements of the Bulletin in effect at the time of readmission.

Admission of Post-Baccalaureate Students

Southwestern Adventist University offers four-year graduates of any accredited college or university, including Southwestern, the opportunity to take additional undergraduate classes, to complete another undergraduate degree or to apply for graduate studies. Admission policies will apply to these students as follows.

  • Additional classes only as a non-degree student
  • Additional undergraduate degree as a transfer student
  • Graduate study admission policies are described in the Graduate Bulletin

The tuition discount for post-baccalaureate students is described in the Finances section of this Bulletin.