Jul 20, 2024  
2024 - 2025 Catalog 
2024 - 2025 Catalog

Admission to the College

General Admission

Individuals are eligible for admission to Tidewater Community College if they are high school graduates or the equivalent, or if they are 18 years of age or older and are able to benefit academically from study at the college, as demonstrated by assessment in reading, writing, and mathematics. Applicants 18 years of age or older who have not earned a high school diploma, a VCCS Accepted Diploma, or GED, may be admitted as demonstrated by assessment scores in reading, writing, and mathematics using the Virginia Placement Test.  

Individuals may submit applications online at tcc.edu. A paper version of the VCCS Common Application for Admission is available by request only from the Admissions and Enrollment office. TCC advises all prospective students to consult with the Outreach or Academic Advisors to discuss their educational interests and the requirements for admission to specific curricula. Applicants may be admitted as curricular or non-curricular students.

By submitting an application to the college, an applicant makes a voluntary decision to participate in a collegiate experience and abide by the policies, rules, and regulations of TCC and the State Board for Community Colleges. In granting admission to an applicant, the college extends the privilege of joining the college community. Students may remain a part of that community as long as the required academic and behavior standards of the college and the VCCS are met.

Tidewater Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions including lactation, age (except when age is a bona fide occupational qualification), status as a veteran, national origin, or other non-merit factors in its programs or activities. Inquiries related to the college’s nondiscrimination policies may be directed to the Associate Vice President of Human Resources, Post Office Box 9000, Norfolk, VA 23509-9000, 757-822-1711.

Curricular Admission

Students accepted for general admission who have been admitted to one of the college’s academic programs are considered curricular students. Curricular students may be either full-time or part-time students.

Upon admission, all curricular students:

  • may submit official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended. Graduates who complete secondary school in a home school setting must provide a graduation date and may be required to provide documentation of coursework. (Note: The VCCS Student Information System academic records are sufficient for students transferring coursework within the VCCS.)


  • may be required to submit additional information with the application to determine admission eligibility or admission to specific curricula.

Admission to Specific Curricula

Some curricula may specify admission requirements in addition to the college’s general admission requirements. Students who do not meet all program admission requirements may be able to make up deficiencies by successfully completing prescribed developmental courses or other course prerequisites. TCC advises all students to consult with counselors or academic advisors to discuss their educational interests and the requirements for admission to specific curricula.

Admission to the college does not guarantee admission to credit programs with restricted enrollments or competitive admissions requirements. Information on restricted admissions programs is available elsewhere in this catalog, from campus division offices, and at tcc.edu/policies.

Admission Priorities

When enrollments must be limited for any curriculum, priority shall be given to all qualified applicants who are residents of the political subdivisions supporting the college and to Virginia residents not having access to the curriculum at their local community college, provided such students meet required prerequisites and apply for admission to the program prior to registration or by a deadline established by the college. In addition, residents of localities with which the college has clinical-site or other agreements may receive equal consideration for admission.

Curriculum Changes

To change curricula, students should consult with counselors or academic advisors to discuss academic requirements and to make sure that all prerequisites for admission to the new curricula have been met (if applicable). Students may request curricula changes by completing the online Curriculum Change Request Form. Students certified for veteran’s benefits must notify the Veterans Affairs Office of the change at their campus of record. Students receiving financial aid should consult with a financial aid staff member to discuss curricula changes and the impacts on aid eligibility.

Non-Curricular Admission

Non-curricular students are those who have not been formally admitted to a credit-bearing program of study. International students requiring issuance of an I-20 or students receiving Federal or State aid are not eligible for this classification. 

Non-Immigrant Aliens

TCC is authorized under Federal Law to enroll non-immigrant alien students.

Applicants with Disabilities

Applicants with disabilities are not required to identify themselves. However, students wishing to request special assistance or academic accommodations because of disabilities or chronic health problems should complete a new student intake form 30 days prior to the first day of classes. Students seeking accommodations or program modifications must provide completed documentation of the disability in the form of a report or a letter from a doctor containing detailed information about the disability.

International Students

In addition to the general admission requirements of the college, all international applicants pursuant to F-1 status must meet the admission requirements established by International Student Services (ISS) before enrolling at the college. Applicants who have already acquired F-1 status and who are enrolled full-time at other SEVIS approved institutions may be eligible for admission to TCC as transfer students. Contact the ISS office, located at the Virginia Beach Campus, by phone at (757) 822-7296 or via email at iss@tcc.edu. Students may visit the ISS website for specific application deadlines and admission procedures to the college pursuant to F-1 status. Applicants in non-immigrant classes other than F-1 are required to meet with the international student advisor to determine admission eligibility and/or limitations.

Transfer Applicants

Transfer students who are eligible for re-entrance at the last college of attendance are also eligible for admission to the community college. Transfer students who are ineligible to return to a particular curriculum in a previous college generally may not be allowed to enroll in the same curriculum at TCC until one semester elapses or until an approved preparatory program at the college is completed. The college shall decide on each case and can impose special conditions for the admittance of such students.

Senior Citizens Higher Education Act

Any person 60 years or older who has been domiciled in Virginia for a minimum of one year and whose Virginia taxable income in the preceding year was not more than $23,850 qualifies for free tuition benefits for credit classes on a space available basis. Anyone 60 years or older, regardless of income level, who has been domiciled in Virginia for a minimum of one year qualifies for free tuition to audit credit classes or non-credit classes on a space available basis. For further information, contact Admissions and Enrollment Services on any campus about credit classes, and contact Workforce Solutions for non-credit classes.

Admission for High School and Home School Students

High school juniors and seniors and home school students studying at the high school junior or senior levels who meet requirements for participation in the college’s dual enrollment programs may be admitted according to Virginia Community College System and institutional admission criteria. Although high school and home school students are not normally qualified for general admission, the college may offer admission to those students who meet additional criteria. Home school students must provide a copy of a home school agreement approved by the school district or a letter from the local school board, or a copy of the letter filed by the parent/legal guardian declaring home school status. Documentation of parental permission is required for all dual enrollment students.

Because admitting high school freshmen and sophomores is considered exceptional, the college-ready status of each prospective freshman and sophomore student will be treated on a case-by-case basis and formal approval by the college president or designee is required for admission.

All students admitted under this section must demonstrate readiness for college, as determined by placement testing or acceptable scores on standardized examinations recognized by the college. Eligibility for continued enrollment will be reviewed each term.

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) regulations may be discussed with applicants and parents to clarify disclosure regulations concerning personally identifiable information.

For additional information regarding admission of high school or home school students, visit www.tcc.edu/dualenrollment.

Admission Refusal or Revocation

The college reserves the right to evaluate and document special cases and to refuse or revoke admission if the college determines that applicants or students pose threats, are potential dangers, are significantly disruptive to the college community, has provided false information or any information for a fraudulent purpose, or if such refusals or revocations are considered to be in the best interest of the college. The college also reserves the right to refuse admission to applicants who have been expelled or suspended from, or determined to be threats, potential dangers, or significantly disruptive by other colleges.


Students who have interrupted their enrollment at the college for more than three years must reapply by submitting updated Applications for Admission online or to campus Admissions and Enrollment Services.


To learn more about establishing domicile in Virginia, visit TCC’s website at tcc.edu, search keywords: in-state tuition. Additional information can also be found on The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) website at schev.edu.

Military Exceptions to Domicile

Commonwealth of Virginia Code and United States Code, as amended by the Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014, the Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020, and the John M. McHugh Tuition Fairness for Survivors Act of 2021 allow for the following individuals to be charged the in-state tuition rate, or otherwise be considered a resident, for tuition purposes:

  • Anyone using any Veterans Affairs education benefit under Chapter 30, 31, 33 or 35 of United States Code who lives in the Commonwealth of Virginia, attending a school located in the Commonwealth of Virginia, regardless of their formal state of residence.
  • Anyone described above while he or she remains continuously enrolled (other than during regularly scheduled breaks between courses, semesters, or terms) at the same institution.
  • Active duty service members stationed outside of Virginia are charged the military contract rate which includes a capital fee.
  • Active duty service members (and their dependents) who are stationed in Virginia or a contiguous state may apply for a domicile exception to receive in-state tuition rates.

Each student must submit a Domicile Exception Application to qualify. Contact an Admissions and Enrollment Services Office on any TCC campus for more information. The Domicile Exception Application may be accessed on the TCC website, search key word: in-state tuition. Current military exceptions to domicile information can be found on The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) website