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Conditional Language Admission

Currently, only certain graduate programs at Clemson University have agreed to consider applicants for conditional letters of admission (CLAs) pending successful completion of an approved English as a Second Language (ESL) program. Those programs are listed under the “Review the Program” section below.

Approved ESL programs

Currently, the Graduate School recognizes these ESL programs as meeting the CLA requirement:

  1. Agape English Language Institute (AELI) — Greenville or Columbia, SC — Level 6
  2. ELS Language Centers — any location — Level 112

Criteria for recognizing other ESL programs:

  1. Accreditation: regional accreditation, or ACCET (Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Teaching), or CEA (Commission on English Language Program Accreditation)
  2. EnglishUSA membership
  3. Level equivalency to CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference) C1

Application process 

Review the program

The programs listed below have agreed to consider applicants for conditional language admission. Please review the list to see if the program you are interested in is included. If so, please review to determine whether or not the qualifications you possess make you a viable candidate for conditional admission.

Please note: Admission to Clemson’s graduate programs is highly competitive. Meeting or exceeding minimum requirements specified in the academic profile in no way guarantees admission to the program with a CLA.

Programs that allow conditional language admission:

Administration and Supervision
Applied Sociology

Architecture (MArch)
Architecture (MS)
Business Administration
City and Regional Planning
Computer Science
Curriculum and Instruction
Digital Production Arts
Educational Leadership (Higher Ed)
Educational Leadership (P-12)
Environmental Engineering and Science
Historic Preservation
Human Centered Computing
Landscape Architecture
Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management
Real Estate Development
Special Education
Teaching and Learning

Submit the application

Submit your degree seeking online application for admission and pay the associated application fee (credit card required).

At the bottom of page 2 of the application, select “yes” to the question, “I am interested in Conditional Language Admission?” Then, choose the ESL program you plan to attend. Currently, we will accept Agape English Language Institute Level 6 and ELS Language Center Level 112. If you plan to study with a different program, we will need to approve that program and level first.

Please note: the ESL program nearest to the Clemson campus is Agape English Language Center, which is located in Greenville, SC. Greenville is located 45 minutes from the main campus.

Upload the required support materials

Upload all required materials directly to your online application (transcripts, resume, personal statement, etc.). Letters of recommendation and personal statements may be submitted electronically unless otherwise stated by the department. You may submit standardized exam scores (such as TOEFL and GRE) if you have already taken the exam. Use school code 5111 when requesting GRE, GMAT, or TOEFL scores to be sent to Clemson University. If you have not taken the exam, exam scores are NOT required for applications being considered for a conditional letter of acceptance.

Check your application status

You may check the status of your application online at any time by selecting “Online Graduate Application” in the Application Menu located on the application page. Please allow several weeks for your completed application to be reviewed. If the academic department to which you applied has an application deadline, you should wait several weeks following that deadline to check the status of your application.

Additional requirements

If you are selected for admission, an official conditional letter of admission will be posted to the Application Portal. If the academic department to which you have been admitted indicates that you need to meet additional requirements prior to matriculation at the university (for example, presenting acceptable scores on the GRE or GMAT, or prerequisite course requirements), these will be specified in the conditional letter of admission.

Conditionally admitted

Confirm conditional acceptance

If you have been accepted for conditional language admission and plan to accept your offer, please use the application portal to confirm your attendance by clicking “Online Graduate Application” from the Application page.

Enroll in an ESL program

Enroll in an approved ESL program:

Coordinate and complete

Coordinate your anticipated program start date with the Graduate Admissions office (

Complete the ESL requirement and submit your certificate to the Graduate Admissions office.

Additional requirements

Complete all additional requirements, such as taking the GRE or GMAT. Submit official test scores to Clemson University, school code 5111.

Since admission to Clemson University’s Graduate School is competitive, you must achieve a competitive score among other applicants requesting admission to the program for your intended term of matriculation. For guidance, you can view median GRE and GMAT test scores of students who were recently offered admission into Graduate School programs: Median GRE and GMAT scores for previously admitted students.

Following conditional admission

Complying with additional conditions

Comply with any additional conditions imposed by the academic department prior to matriculating at the university. It is the student’s responsibility — and the student must agree — to meet all conditions pursuant to conditional language admission. For example, if the academic department requires you to take and post an acceptable score on the GRE prior to matriculating into the university, you must prepare for the exam while concurrently enrolled in an ESL program, take the exam in a timely manner, and request that an official score report be released from ETS to the Graduate School at Clemson University. Clemson’s institutional code is 5111.

ESL completion verification

Following successful completion of the ESL program, you must request that your ESL program send an official transcript verifying completion of the expected level by email to ( or by mail (Graduate Admissions, E-209 Martin Hall, Clemson, South Carolina 29634).

Admission letter

Upon verification that you have met all the requirements for conditional language admission, Graduate Admissions will issue you a new decision letter, viewable at the application portal.

SEVIS record request

Contact the ESL program and request for your SEVIS record to be transferred to Clemson. The designated school official at the ESL program will advise you on the appropriate documentation (such as your fully admitted admission letter) that must be provided prior to transferring your record.

I-20 issuance

The Office of International Services will issue your I-20 once your SEVIS record has been transferred and released to Clemson University and OIA has determined your eligibility for I-20 issuance. Questions regarding transferring SEVIS records to Clemson and I-20 issuance should be directed to the Office of International Services. Contact information is available at