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Admissions Information

Admissions Process

In order to enroll in classes at the College, you must first apply and receive your acceptance information. To apply, click here.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the College by meeting the following requirements:

  • A diploma from an accredited high school or
  • A state equivalency diploma (GED®).

Applicants who are 18 years of age and older, and have not earned a high school diploma or state equivalency diploma (GED®), may be eligible for admission and may qualify for a Commonwealth Secondary School Diploma by means of the General Education Development (GED®) test. An applicant may also earn the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Diploma upon enrollment and completion of 30 college-level credits. Students in the latter category must request that a transcript of their academic record be sent to the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Applicants without a high school diploma (GED®) are not eligible for financial aid.

Placement Testing
Applicants are required to take a placement test in reading, writing and mathematics. An applicant may be eligible for a placement test waiver if he/she has earned college credits at an accredited college or university or received acceptable scores on the SAT and/or ACT tests.

The College reserves the right to require applicants to take developmental classes or to limit the number of courses in which they may enroll based on placement test results.

Select Program Admission
There are certain programs of study that have additional entrance requirements. Applicants planning to enter one of these select programs of study must follow the prescribed steps for admission in each program. Please click here to see the select programs which are identified with an asterisk. Applicants must first complete all course prerequisites, take applicable tests and/or submit requested materials as part of the admission process for select programs. As a result of the steps that must be completed before entry into a select program, an applicant will be placed into a non-select program of study at the time of acceptance to the College. The admission process for select programs is competitive, space may be limited and only qualified students will be admitted.

Applicant Categories

Applicants who want to earn an associate’s degree, academic certificate or proficiency certificate at the College are considered degree-seeking students. Academic certificates prepare students for a variety of opportunities, including workplace preparation. Academic certificates require two semesters of college-level English and one semester of college-level math. All coursework transfers seamlessly into the College’s associate’s degree programs.

Proficiency certificates are short-term, focused course offerings that are primarily developed to prepare students for employment. Students may also continue their education, since all credits earned through the proficiency certificates transfer seamlessly into an academic certificate or associate’s degree program in a related field.

Applicants must choose a degree program, academic certificate or proficiency certificate with a requirement of 16 or more credits to be eligible for financial aid.

New Student

Applicants who have never attended a college or university (including Community College of Philadelphia), and who possess or are about to obtain a high school diploma or state equivalency diploma (GED®), should apply to the College as new students. Detailed instructions on getting started at the College are available by visiting our Getting Started page.

Transfer Student

Applicants who have attended another college or university with earned college credits should apply for admission as transfer students.

Applicants are responsible for having their prior earned college credits evaluated prior to course registration to avoid duplication. Transfer credits are granted for courses in which the applicant earned a grade of "C-" or better unless otherwise specified by the program requirements. Click here for more details.

Re-admit Student

Applicants who have previously attended Community College of Philadelphia and have not taken credit-level courses in two or more years are eligible for admission as re-admit students and must complete an admission application online to update their student records.

Applicants who only took noncredit courses at the College are not considered re-admit students and should apply as new students following the New Student Process.

International Student

International students who are eligible to study in the United States are also eligible for admission to the College. Community College of Philadelphia is authorized to issue Form I-20 and other immigration documentation to qualified students who wish to study in the United States and earn a degree. All applicants must complete all admission requirements by July 1 for the fall semester and November 1 for the spring semester. International students holding an F-1, J-1 or any non-immigrant visa cannot be classified as legal residents of Philadelphia or Pennsylvania. Visit our International Student page for more information.

Currently Enrolled High School Student or Home School Student (Dual Enrollment — Advance at College)

Applicants who are enrolled as 11th or 12th grade students in high school, including home school students, may apply to enroll for classes at Community College of Philadelphia for the purpose of earning college credits prior to high school graduation. Eligible students must possess the academic skills, as evidenced by the College’s placement test, needed to meet the challenges of college-level courses. For further information, visit our Advance at College page.

In extraordinary cases the College may grant admission to applicants who have completed at least the eighth grade, and demonstrate academic skill and maturity necessary for college work. Prior to acceptance, applicants must demonstrate an ability to benefit from instruction in a collegiate setting as evidenced by the College’s placement test, submit a portfolio for appropriate subject areas and interview with the director of Admissions. Applicants must place at college-level on the placement test and are not allowed to take developmental courses. The goal of the interview with the director of Admissions is to discuss expectations of college faculty, coursework and awareness of mature content in subject areas. Applicants must be accompanied by a legal guardian or parent when attending the admissions interview.

Guest Student

Guest students are those applicants who are attending another college, do not plan to earn a degree from Community College of Philadelphia and plan to attend the College only occasionally to take courses which will be transferred to their home institutions. Upon completion of the admission application, applicants will receive an email with instructions to activate their MyCCP account and can take advantage of web registration for desired courses. Visit our Guest Student page for more details.

Guest students are not eligible to receive financial aid from Community College of Philadelphia and should contact their home school’s Office of Financial Aid to inquire about consortium agreements if they wish to be reimbursed.

Non-Matriculating Student

  • While the College’s primary focus is to provide academic experiences for students seeking credentials, individuals with a successful record of college performance who do not plan to earn a degree or certificate and plan to attend the College only for personal or professional enrichment are considered non-matriculating students.
  • Non-matriculating students are permitted to enroll in only one course (not to exceed four credits) per semester with a maximum of three courses (not to exceed nine credits) before matriculation is required.
  • Course pre-requisite requirements must be followed and applicants must abide by the processes relating to pre-requisite course requirements.
  • Applicants are responsible for providing a college transcript or a copy of a college diploma from a regionally accredited institution showing evidence of completed coursework. Non-matriculating students are not eligible to receive financial aid.

Senior Citizen

Applicants who are at least 65 years old and residents of Philadelphia can register for one tuition-free credit course per semester on a space-available basis. An online admission application must be completed. Course registration will begin two weeks prior to the start of the semester. Noncredit courses are not included in this offer. A Senior Citizen Registration fee is charged for seniors who participate in this program. Click here for tuition and fees.

Enrollment Status—Part-Time or Full-Time

For financial aid determination, enrollment verification and other reasons, students are classified based upon the number of credits for which they are enrolled in a semester.

  • 12 credits or more — full-time
  • 11 credits or less — part-time
  • 7-11 credits — three quarter-time
  • 6 credits — half-time
  • 5 credits or less — less than half-time

A student who wants to enroll in 18 credits or more in a regular semester or more than 8 credits in a summer term must request the approval of the vice president for Academic Affairs or designee.

Residency Requirement

Tuition rates at Community College of Philadelphia are determined by a student’s domicile. Domicile is the place where one intends to and does, in fact, permanently reside. The College establishes its residency policy in accordance with the Pennsylvania Code, Title 22, Education Chapter 35. International students holding an F-1 or J-1 visa cannot be classified as legal residents of Philadelphia or Pennsylvania.

First preference for admission to the College, and particularly to select programs of high demand, is given to Philadelphia residents. To qualify as a legal resident of Philadelphia, an applicant must meet all of the following requirements:

  1. Must be a citizen or a permanent resident alien of the United States or be admitted on an immigrant visa to the United States.
  2. Must have resided in Pennsylvania for at least 12 months prior to the first day of the 15-week term of the semester at Community College of Philadelphia.
  3. Must have resided in Philadelphia for at least three months prior to the first day of the 15-week term of the semester at Community College of Philadelphia.

The College will require at least two items of documentary evidence or statements from disinterested persons in order to establish proof of residence.

Examples of documentation that may provide convincing evidence toward meeting the residency policy requirement include the following:

  1. Current apartment lease or purchase of a permanent independent residence.
  2. Payment of appropriate state and local taxes. Special attention shall be given to payment of Commonwealth taxes on income earned during periods of temporary absence from this Commonwealth.
  3. Transfer of bank accounts, automobile and other registered property to this Commonwealth.
  4. Current Pennsylvania driver’s license or state ID.
  5. Pay stubs with Philadelphia home address showing payment of Philadelphia wage taxes.

Cases shall be decided on the basis of documentation submitted, with qualitative rather than quantitative emphasis. The determination of residency in each case is one of the subjective intentions of the student to reside indefinitely in this Commonwealth.

Persons on active duty with the U.S. Armed Forces and stationed in Philadelphia are considered Philadelphia residents. Persons on active duty with the U.S. Armed Forces, stationed in other parts of the country or world, who maintain their legal residence as Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, are considered Philadelphia residents.

Effective July 1, 2009, a member of the armed forces who is on active duty (or the spouse or dependent child of a member), whose domicile or permanent duty station is in Pennsylvania, will be charged no greater than the in-state tuition rate. This provision remains in effect for each member, spouse or dependent while continuously enrolled at the College, even if there is a subsequent change in the permanent duty station of the member to a location outside the state.

Change of residency for tuition and mailing purposes is the sole responsibility of the student. Any changes made to residency after the third week of a semester will be reflected in the following semester.

Students attending the College for the first time may challenge their permanent residency classification by filing a written petition with the director of Admissions prior to beginning classes.

Continuing students may challenge their permanent residency classification by filing a written petition with the director of Student Records and Registration before the last day of the term's refund period (15-week during fall/spring, 7-week during summer).

College Placement Test

The College maintains an Assessment Center in which new students are given placement tests prior to their orientation and registration. Untested continuing and returning students may satisfy the placement test requirement by arranging to be tested in this Center.

  • The placement test helps us place you into courses appropriate to your academic preparedness.
  • The test measures reading, writing and math skills.
  • The College utilizes computerized testing. You may request a paper/pencil version of the test.

YOU MUST BE TESTED IF:

  • You want (or are required) to enroll in an English or mathematics course.
  • You want to enroll in more than one course (or 4 credits) at the Main Campus or a Regional Center.

Test scores are valid for two years. Students must be retested after a two-year period unless they have successfully completed an English and/or mathematics course during this time. Admissions tests for select programs and placement tests for specific courses are also administered.

YOU MAY BE ELIGIBLE FOR A TEST WAIVER IF YOU MEET ONE OF THE FOLLOWING:

  • You have already earned a college degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • You earned a grade of "C-" or better in a college-level composition and/or math course from an accredited U.S. college.
  • You have ACT scores of 21 English, 17 math or SAT scores of 510 critical reading, 470 math within the past two years.
  • You received a minimum of 213 on the TOEFL computerized test AND a 5 on the TOEFL writing test; or you received minimum of 560 on the TOEFL paper/pencil test AND a 5 on the TOEFL writing test; you received a minimum of 77 on the TOEFL Internet-based test and a 20 on the TOEFL Internet writing test.

Bring your transcript, diploma, or your SAT or ACT score report to the Transfer Credit and Placement Office (MG-17) on our Main Campus or to any of our Regional Centers and ask for the waiver.

Scheduling a Placement Test

If you need to request accommodations due to a documented disability, contact the Center on Disability before you schedule your placement tests. You can schedule and/or change your placement test through MyCCP after submitting your application for admission. Follow these steps to set up your user name, password and placement test:

  • Go to MyCCP.
  • Click on “How do I get a username and password?" (You will need your student ID and Social Security number to get started.)
  • After logging in, go to Banner Self Service and click on "Student Services."
  • Select the "Schedule Placement Test" option and follow the instructions.

If you cannot keep your test appointment, you may reschedule it through MyCCP or by calling the Admissions Information Center at 215-751-8010. You can find a complete description of the placement test here.

Advanced Placement

Students entering the College may take waiver examinations in some courses. Success in such tests will permit students to enroll in more advanced courses. Students should contact the appropriate department head for further information.

Prior Learning Assessment

Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) can help students succeed by awarding college credit for learning achieved outside the traditional college classroom. Credit is awarded for learning that matches a particular course in your Program of Study. Course credit based on prior learning is given at the discretion of the department offering the course. Not all departments offer these options. PLA is available for students who have knowledge attained through professional experience, independent study or similar learning experiences comparable to subjects and courses taught at Community College of Philadelphia. Please refer to Policy Number 7, Credit by Examination for more information.

Pathways to Earn College Credit for Prior Learning

Applied Studies Program
The Applied Studies curriculum is designed for students who seek a degree that recognizes the value of experience and work as part of college learning. Refer to the Applied Studies program page for more information.

Credit by Exam
Some courses may be challenged by taking a standardized exam, such as CLEP, or a departmental exam.

Evaluation of Non-Credit or Alternative Instruction
Examples include professional training programs such as the Police Academy, Military Training, non-credit courses as well as some career and technical programs.

Assessment by Portfolio
Students may develop a portfolio for individual assessment of college-level learning. Prior authorization must be obtained from the Academic Department in which the course is taught in order to pursue this assessment method.

Act 48 - Continuing Professional Education for Certified Educators

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, on November 23, 1999, passed into law Act 48. This law addresses requirements for professional education planning and requires all certified educators (teachers, principals and superintendents), every five years, to earn six college credits, six continuing professional education credits, or 180 clock hours of continuing professional education, or any combination of collegiate studies, continuing professional education courses, or learning experiences equivalent to 180 hours.

Act 48 regulations recognize collegiate credits from accredited institutions of higher education as appropriate for professional education purposes. Community College of Philadelphia is considered an approved higher educational institution by the Department of Education for providing continuing professional education credits or hours.

Individuals requiring Act 48 certification should complete an Act 48 Certification Form, which may be obtained at Enrollment Central on the ground level of the Bonnell Building at the Main Campus or at any of the three Regional Centers.

Veterans Education Benefits

Veterans must be certified to receive VA benefits. To be certified, the Application for VA Benefits (VA Form 1990) must be completed and students must be registered for classes. Alternatively, students may file the veterans application (VONAPP) online at http://vabenefits.vba.va.gov/vonapp/. Veterans should apply early each semester to allow the College and the Veterans Administration time to process benefits. To apply, submit your Community College of Philadelphia Veterans Benefits Registration form along with a Notice of Basic Eligibility, Certificate of Eligibility or form DD-214 to the School Certifying Official located on the Main Campus at Enrollment Central on the ground level of the Bonnell Building.

Veterans must also report any changes in registration by completing a Community College of Philadelphia Veterans Benefits Registration form and submitting it to the School Certifying Official in Enrollment Central on the ground level of the Bonnell Building. Changes include selecting additional courses, dropping a course, changing to a different course or withdrawing from school.

All students except those receiving benefits under Chapters 31, 33 and 35 must report attendance on a monthly basis to the VA. Attendance should be reported the last day of each month by calling 1-888-442-4551 or on the Web at www.gibill.va.gov and selecting "Verify Attendance."

Chapter 31 - Vocational Rehabilitation

All Chapter 31 Veterans need to be certified for their program of study by the local Veterans Administration Office. The local VA office address is:

Veterans Administration
5000 Wissahickon Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19101
1-800-827-1000

For more information about veterans education benefits, see the Veterans Education Benefits section and the VA website at www.gibill.va.gov. You can also contact the Veterans Resource Center, located on the ground level of the Bonnell Building, Room BG-43, for more information and services to help you achieve your goals at the College. For more information, email Veterans Resource Center.