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At the University of Central Florida, we’re committed to offering undergraduate students a range of flexible, high-quality learning experiences to accommodate diverse lifestyles and learning needs. And as a First-Time-In-College (FTIC) student, we recognize that going to college comes with many questions and options, and that getting the right answers and guidance on the pathway best suited for you is vitally important to your success.

While online education offers unparalleled flexibility and convenience, it’s crucial to consider your own learning preferences and time-management skills to make the most out of your experience. Rest assured, whatever path you choose, we’re committed to supporting you on your college journey.

How do I know if I am an FTIC?

First-Time In College (FTIC) students are defined by the number of college credits completed after high school graduation.Any student who graduates from high school and enrolls at UCF without completing more than 11 college credits between high school graduation and enrolling at UCF is an FTIC. College credits completed as part of a high school curriculum (including dual enrollment and the earning of accelerated credit such as AICE, AP, CLEP or IB) are not counted toward the 11-credit limit. Even students who have completed significant college credit, such as an AA degree, are FTICs as long as the credit or degree was earned while still enrolled in high school.

FTIC Enrollment: Traditional Students vs. UCF Online Student

If you’re a traditional on-campus student, depending on the available course options, you have the liberty to choose the format of your courses based on your preferences and needs each semester. Depending on the availability of the course, you can opt to take classes face-to-face, fully online, or mixed-mode (partially online and partially face-to-face). This mix-and-match approach gives you the opportunity to create a learning schedule that complements your lifestyle and commitments, enabling a balanced college experience.

Conversely, fully online students enrolled through UCF Online are committed to an entirely virtual learning environment. This means that all your courses will be conducted online, without the option of any face-to-face instruction. This option is tailored for students who thrive in a flexible and self-paced environment, prefer a commute-free academic experience, or have personal or professional commitments that make attending on-campus classes challenging.

Choosing the Path That’s Best For You

Deciding between a fully online education and an on-campus experience is a significant choice that can shape your college journey, particularly as an FTIC student. It’s essential to consider your lifestyle, learning preferences, and career goals when weighing these two options. For those who thrive on interpersonal interaction, value structured schedules, and enjoy experiencing the rich tapestry of campus life, the on-campus path could be a perfect fit. This traditional university environment allows students to engage in face-to-face interactions, participate actively in campus events, experience on-campus housing if desired, and fully immerse themselves in the vibrant life of UCF.

On the other hand, UCF Online has been crafted to meet the needs of learners seeking flexibility and convenience. This option is ideal for students balancing multiple commitments or those who learn better in a self-paced, online environment. UCF Online students have the opportunity to shape their learning journey, studying at their own pace, in their preferred environment, and at times that best suit them. It’s an empowering way to fit a high-quality education around your life, rather than trying to fit your life around a fixed academic schedule.

Whether on-campus or online, you’ll have access to the same renowned faculty, rigorous academics, and supportive community that are the hallmark of a UCF education.

Comparing Service Offerings for FTIC Students

As an FTIC student at UCF, your access to robust support services is a vital component of your educational journey, whether you choose to pursue your degree as a UCF Online student or as a traditional on-campus student. While the core of these services remains consistent in their dedication to student success, the manner in which they’re accessed can differ between UCF Online and the traditional on-campus experience. Here, we’ll outline these key differences, ensuring you’re well-informed about the support you can expect in each learning environment.

Amenities Campus-Based Programs UCF Online Programs
Academic Advising Yes Yes
Athletic Events Yes No
Campus Activities and Events Yes No
Career Services Yes Yes
Counseling and Psychological Service Yes No
Enrollment Restricted to Part-Time* Yes
Experiential Learning and Internships Yes Yes
Fraternity and Sorority Life Yes No
Health Services Yes No
LEAD Scholars Academy Yes No
Library Services Yes Yes
On-Campus Housing Yes No
Recreation and Wellness Center Yes No
Student Academic Resource Center Yes Yes
Student Accessibility Services Yes Yes
Success Coaches No Yes
UCF ID Card Yes Yes
Veteran Services Yes Yes
Waived Fees No Yes
Writing Center Yes Yes

*See FAQ below for details on the part-time enrollment requirement.

Tuition and fees vary between UCF Online students and traditional on-campus students. For a complete official tuition and fee schedule, please visit the UCF Student Account Services website. To better understand the Fee Waiver’s available to UCF Online students, visit the UCF Online Fee Waiver page.

The current estimated cost of attendance for Florida residents and nonresidents can be found on the UCF Financial Aid website. All costs are estimated and may vary by your local cost of living.

Eligibility Requirements for UCF Online FTIC Students

FTIC students applying to the Summer 2024 term and beyond are eligible for admission to UCF Online programs. FTIC students will be limited to part-time enrollment (<12 credit hours) in their first major semester (Fall or Spring) but may opt for a full-time credit load thereafter.

Students who have not enrolled in any in-person classes remain eligible to opt-in to UCF Online in a future semester. Requests to opt-in or change major to UCF Online must be made no later than three business days in advance of classes starting for the fee waivers effective to be applied in that given term. For requests submitted after this deadline, the fee waivers will be effective starting the next term. Any student ineligible for UCF Online may still take online courses and complete UCF Online majors or programs but will be subject to campus-based fees. Contact the UCF Online Connect Center for further information, or to appeal ineligibility for UCF Online.

Contact Us: UCF Online Connect Center

Considering enrolling as an FTIC student through UCF Online? Our team of dedicated success coaches are here to guide you through the decision-making process and answer any questions you might have about whether UCF Online is the right choice for you. Whether you want to explore program options, understand the application process, or have any other inquiries, don’t hesitate to reach out to our UCF Online Connect Center. We are committed to helping you succeed in your academic journey at UCF Online.

Frequently Asked Questions

This section will provide answers to common questions related to FTIC students considering enrolling as a UCF Online student.

First semester enrollment is limited to part time to assure students’ academic success. UCF Online students do not commonly have in-person access to resource offices and faculty.  First time in college (FTIC) students are new to the college experience and are given a major semester (Fall or Spring) to become accustomed to UCF’s online services and class modalities, after which they are able to enroll in a full-time class load, if desired. If an online student requires full time enrollment for scholarship purposes, they are encouraged to contact the Undergraduate Admissions office regarding a possible waiver.

Yes. Online is an instructional mode at UCF, just like face-to-face or mixed, and many programs give you the option of taking some or most courses virtually. There are lots of traditional students who take a combination of classroom-based courses and online or mixed, and you will find both UCF Online students and campus students in the same online classes with the same faculty. However, for the UCF Online student, there is only one mode of instruction – online. If you are interested in campus life or student housing, you should not enroll in UCF Online, and you can still take as many online classes as you like (campus-based fees will be assessed). Students can opt-out of UCF Online by contacting their UCF Online connect center coach.

Yes, students are free to visit campus, use the library, meet with faculty, advisors, and other resource offices. Online students may not reside in campus housing. Some campus services and resources that are fee-supported (e.g., the Recreation and Wellness Center), may not be available to UCF Online students. See table above for more details.

UCF Online is intended for students who either cannot or choose not to participate in campus life. Therefore, they do not pay student fees for services like transportation, health services and recreation facilities. This is a savings of over $55 per credit hour for undergraduate students. See table above for a full list of services available.

UCF Online students may only enroll in courses offered in the W and V modalities. Classes in the in-person modalities will not be visible in the enrollment portal. View for more information on UCF class modalities.

Online students’ most important resource is their individual student coach, available by phone, video or email. The coach is the students’ campus advocate and can connect students with all standing UCF resources that provide services at a distance.  Students have access to financial assistance, academic advising, library services and more. Visit for more about resources available to UCF Online students.

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