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Office of the Provost

Academic Common Market

Applying for ACM

The Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) Academic Common Market (ACM) allows students from participating states to pursue eligible programs at a reduced tuition rate. Follow the steps below to apply for ACM.

Who Can Apply for ACM?
Incoming freshmen or current students from SREB states are able to apply for ACM if they are currently admitted into or enrolled in an ACM eligible program.

What Programs are Eligible for ACM?
Each state has a specific list of programs eligible for ACM. To determine your state's list of programs, visit USC's Participating States page.

What are my Next Steps?
To receive the ACM tuition reduction, you must declare an eligible program for your state of residence, apply for ACM through your state ACM office, and meet USC's ACM deadline. More information is available below.

Confirming Your Program Enrollment
Admitted incoming students may confirm their major by contacting the Admissions Office at (803)777-7700. Current students may confirm their major by accessing Self Service Carolina.

Declaring an ACM-Eligible Program
Admitted incoming students that have not yet declared an ACM-eligible program may do so by contacting the Admissions Office at (803)777-7700. 

Current students wishing to declare an ACM-eligible major may make an appointment with an Exploratory Advisor

You must submit an application through your state ACM office in order to receive a ACM Certification of Eligibility. You are responsible for compiling documentation. 

Letter Confirming ACM-Eligible Major
All state ACM offices require a letter on University letterhead confirming that you are admitted or enrolled in a specific ACM-eligible program, as of the semester you are applying for ACM. For incoming students, your letter of admission (which shows your ACM eligible program) will be what you attach to your ACM application. Submit a request for a new letter via the USC form if you declared a new major after receiving your letter of admission. Current students must request a letter confirming ACM-eligible program. Submit a request for a new letter via the USC form. 

Other Required Documents 
Visit the USC Participating States page for a link to your state ACM website and application, which lists additional state ACM application requirements. 

Apply for ACM
A complete ACM application must be submitted to your state ACM office in order to apply to receive an ACM Certification of Eligibility. Visit our Participating States page for a link to your state ACM application. While ACM is not merit based or a scholarship, you must meet all of your state ACM office's criteria in order to receive an ACM Certification of Eligibility. Transfer students are strongly encouraged to contact their state ACM coordinator regarding application timelines.

How Long will it Take? 
Most state ACM offices have application processing times of 4-12 weeks. Some state ACM office have application deadlines. As the USC ACM Office does not process your ACM application, we cannot update you on the status of your application or answer questions regarding state ACM applications. We recommend that you follow-up with your state ACM coordinator regarding the status of your application and any questions you may have regarding state-specific application requirements.

USC Deadlines
*The USC ACM office must receive your state ACM Certification of Eligibility by the USC deadline for the semester you applied for ACM. Certifications for past or current (ongoing) semesters will not be approved. To ensure you meet the USC deadline, submit your state ACM application at least 6-12 weeks in advance of the USC ACM deadline for the term you wish to receive ACM.

Notification of Certification
State ACM Offices send Certifications of Eligibility to USC via email. Students will be notified via USC email once the USC ACM Office has received the ACM Certification of Eligibility.

USC ACM Approval
You must register for full-time coursework* and remain in your specific ACM-eligible major in order to be approved by USC for the ACM tuition reduction. If you are an incoming student, you will register for full-time coursework at New Student Orientation.

When will ACM Appear on my Account?
Once the USC ACM Office approves a student to receive the ACM tuition reduction, the tuition reduction will appear on your account within 24 hours at (once bills have posted).

What will my bill Look Like Under ACM?
ACM is a tuition reduction equal to the difference between non-resident and resident-level tuition. It is not a scholarship. You will be billed for non-resident tuition. Once approved for ACM by the USC ACM Office, ACM will reduce your non-resident tuition to the resident level.

University-Granted Scholarships and ACM
University-granted scholarships are usually made up of two parts: a tuition reduction and a monetary award (such as $250 a semester). ACM is a tuition reduction. While the University cannot "stack" reductions, you can receive the higher of the two tuition reductions and the monetary award from your scholarship. Since ACM is the highest tuition reduction offered, will reduce your tuition to the resident-level, and is also not merit-based, it will be placed on your account once you are approved by the USC ACM Office.

Do I Need to Apply for ACM Each Semester?
You do not need to apply for ACM again so long as you:
  • Remain in your ACM-approved program
  • Stay fully and continuously enrolled
  • Maintain good academic standing (GPA and course progression of your ACM-approved program), and
  • Choose only secondary programs that are ACM-eligible for your state of residence
Visit the USC Maintaining ACM page for more information, including exceptions to full and continuous enrollment.

 USC Academic Common Market Approval

*Students are responsible for submitting application materials to state ACM offices with enough time for states to meet USC ACM deadlines. ACM Certifications must be received by USC ACM Office deadlines in order to be processed for approval. Processing of ACM Certifications may take up to 7-10 business days. Students Certified by their state for the Summer semester do not need to register for full-time coursework to be approved for ACM. ACM Certifications for semesters underway or already completed will not be approved.  

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