General FAQs

1. Admissions

How do I get admitted to the PAR program?

Undergraduate students apply to FAU and to PAR concurrently. Click here for application instructions. To be accepted into the PAR program, students must have a minimum grade average of 3.0 or higher on the U.S. grading scale. The program is designed for students who have previous knowledge of the English language. Students who need beginner level training in English will be referred to the Intensive English Institute.

Graduate students should contact the PAR Program at parinfo@fau.edu for current admissions and application procedures.

What is the average class size?
PAR classes are small, usually between 14 and 20 students.

How long do I have to be in the PAR program before I can enroll in university-level courses?

The PAR program is designed to be completed in 9 months. At the beginning of each semester the PAR program holds testing sessions for all new students. Students are placed into the correct level of study based on their test results. In the last level of the program, students enroll in English courses and university courses concurrently.

Does admission to PAR give me admission to FAU?
Upon admission to the PAR program you have received conditional admission to FAU. This means that after you successfully complete the PAR program, you may be fully admitted to the university.

2. Visa

How do I apply for a U.S. visa?
Upon acceptance to the PAR program, you will be asked to provide required documentation to obtain the F-1 visa eligibility document – called Form I-20. Form I-20 will only be issued after you are conditionally admitted to the university and after you provide proof that you have financial support for enrollment in the PAR program. The form is issued for a 12 month period. For recommended deadlines, click here.

3. Housing

What are my housing options and where will I live?
Most undergraduate students will live on campus in FAU Residence Halls and Apartments. Graduate students may live on campus, in an apartment off campus, or with friends or relatives in the area. You will receive details about your housing options when you receive notification that you have been accepted to PAR. Most students will be placed in Heritage Park Towers , Innovation Village Apartments North or Innovation Village Apartments South . (Click for a virtual tour.)

Where can I find Internet access?
All of the FAU campus has free, high speed Internet access. High-speed Internet access is provided in all Residence Halls and Apartments as part of the room rate. Students will need to have wireless device or bring an Ethernet (NIC) card to access the Internet.

4. Student Life

The University’s division of student affairs provides programs and services to promote academic success and total student development, helping students become intellectually engaged and more informed about civic responsibility. Health services, campus recreation, career development, volunteer opportunities, counseling and academic assistance are available.

Many student activities are available to complement and enhance your overall educational experience. Your involvement can expose you to a variety of social, cultural, intellectual, spiritual, and recreational opportunities and challenges. Take advantage of your opportunities to interact with other students, faculty, and staff and learn outside the classroom while making lifelong friendships! There are over 300 student organizations on the Boca Raton Campus. You can get involved in a variety of co-curricular activities, including: Special Interest organizations, Fraternities and Sororities, Diversity Appreciation organizations, Professional associations, Spiritual and Religious groups, Recreational, Student Government Association, Student Media, Sports clubs, and more.

What are some of the challenges about student life at FAU?
For some students the biggest challenge is balancing your academic load with all the fun attractions that South Florida has to offer. For other students, it’s being far from home.

What kind of academic support services do you provide?
PAR students will have ample opportunities to meet one-on-one with the professors teaching their courses for additional academic support. PAR teachers will have office hours to facilitate this service.Additionally, students will be provided opportunities during PAR to meet their future FAU advisors.

Does FAU have sports teams?
The Owls athletic program features nearly 500 student-athletes competing in 19 Division I sports. A 29,419-seat football stadium opened on the Boca Raton campus in October 2011. Also, there are informal intramural leagues you might be able to join for friendly competition with other students.

5. Living in the U.S.

Do I need to open a U.S. bank account?
It’s not a requirement but we strongly recommend that you do. The University has established a special banking relationship with BB&T and the OWL CARD also serves as BB&T's ATM card.BB&T operates a full service bank branch on the FAU Boca Raton campus. This branch is located in the Student Services Building West, across from the Breezeway Food Court. BB&T also operates 7 Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) on the Boca Raton campus as well as one ATM each in the Davie and the John D. MacArthur Campuses. While there are other banks in the local area that students may use for their banking needs, you are encouraged to take advantage of the convenience that an on-campus bank offers. BB&T offers free services to students and staff, such as free basic checking with no monthly fees, no minimum balances, and no ATM fees at any of the on-campus ATM's or any BB&T ATM's.

How do I get money from my country to the U.S. and from the U.S to my country?
In general, the easiest way is to open a bank account in the U.S. Some countries have restrictions on moving money into and out of the country. You should check with a local bank in your country and ask them their procedure for making electronic bank transfers to and from the United States.

Do I need to bring or buy a computer?
FAU provides many desktop computers available in the library, the student union and various study centers and buildings around campus. Both PC’s and Macintosh computers may be used. While these are useful for checking email and Internet access, it is recommended that students have their own computers for more in depth schoolwork and use in the dorms.

Will my computer, iPod and other electronics work in the U.S.?
If you come from a country where 220/240 volts is used, most of your electrical appliances, such as computers and iPods will work in the U.S. Many of them already have the ability to work with the U.S. electrical current (110/120 volts) and do not require a transformer.

Do I need a car?
Students are permitted cars on campus, however they are not encouraged. Students who live on campus typically find that bicycles are more convenient and offer transportation to the many nearby shops and restaurants.

Do I need a mobile phone?
Depending on your current phone’s manufacturer you may be able to purchase an inexpensive SIM card that will enable your current phone to work in the U.S. Please contact the manufacturer and your local phone service. However, as phone service is generally very inexpensive in the U.S. you might find that it is far more economical for you to purchase a mobile phone and phone service in the States.

What will happen if I get sick?
As a PAR student you will be required to have health insurance coverage. The health insurance fee is in addition to the program cost. You will have access to Student Health Services on the university campus. Board-certified physicians, advanced registered nurse practitioners, registered nurses, a board-certified dentist, dental hygienists and well-trained support staff work cooperatively to provide comprehensive quality health care. The FAU Pharmacy serves PAR students and is conveniently located on the Boca Raton campus. A wide selection of over-the-counter items and prescription medications are maintained or are typically available within 24 hours.

6. Expenses

Is it expensive to go to school in Boca Raton?
This depends on the country you are coming from and how strong the currency is compared to the U.S. dollar. Estimated personal expenses for a full-time PAR student in 2014 are $5,322 for 12 months.

How do I pay my application and program fees?
Upon acceptance to the PAR program, you will receive a link to pay these costs online via FAU’s payment gateway. Most major credit cards are accepted. Please verify that your credit card is authorized to process international transactions prior to paying any fees online.

What about costs for accommodation and eating?
The cost for accommodation and food are included in your PAR programs fee. Students who do not stay in campus housing will pay a reduced PAR program fee.

Students receive a meal plan which provides for 15 meals per week on campus at the Center Marketplace plus $100 flexbucks (extra money you use at dining retail locations) per semester.

Are there additional university fees?
University fees are included in the PAR program fee.

When will I be able to take FAU courses?
Students will take 3-6 credits in academic courses during Level B. The fees for these courses are in addition to the PAR program costs.

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 Last Modified 12/18/14