Five Towns College 2023-2024 Catalog 
    Jul 18, 2024  
Five Towns College 2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]


Five Towns College seeks applicants who are both inquisitive and creative, and who have the interest and potential to benefit from the educational opportunities afforded by its programs. The College encourages applications from students who will engage themselves fully in its creative community, and who will contribute to the academic discourse with honor and integrity. The College values students whose interests reflect curiosity and commitment, as well as excitement for the spirit of intellectual pursuits.

Prospective students who are entering the College as transfer students, either with or without an associate degree, need to provide the College with an official/final high school transcript, as well as official/final college transcripts from all institutions attended after high school.

All prospective transfer students must make every effort to obtain their official/final high school and college transcripts. In the rare case when a conditionally admitted student is unable to secure transcripts, Five Towns College may obtain the documents on behalf of the student with the transcript request form signed by the student during the admissions process, allowing the College to request the transcripts on their behalf.  The cost per request is $50.00, which will be added to the student’s account.

Entrance Exams

Some entering freshmen will be required to take one or more placement exams. Most entering students may be reviewed and registered for classes before taking the exams, but for some entering students, the exam may be required in order to process their application for admission. These exams may be required of students who may benefit from more specialized advisement programs at the College such as the HEOP program. The exam may also be required when the Admissions Committee is unable to reach a consensus regarding the readiness of a candidate for admission to pursue college-level work. The exams may be computerized or written depending on the student’s needs.

Standards for Undergraduate Admissions

As an institution with a significant performing arts component, the College recognizes that the results from standardized tests and high school averages do not necessarily predict the likelihood that a particular student will be successful at Five Towns College. While the College generally admits students who have attained the equivalent of a high school average of 85% or better, the Admissions Committee will consider the entirety of a candidate’s application before rendering a decision. In some cases, students with lower grades and/or scores may be offered conditional acceptance, and in some cases students with higher grades may not. Students submitting GED or TASC scores of at least 2500 are also invited to apply for admission.

Audition/Interview/Portfolio Requirement

Select degree programs require auditions, interviews and/or portfolio reviews prior to admission. Specific requirements for each of the listed programs are available from the Admissions Office. Current Five Towns College students seeking to transfer into one of these programs are required to meet the same standards when they file a Program Change Request Form. Initial applicants, who do not meet the standards established for any of the elements indicated below, may still be permitted to matriculate into an aligned associate degree program and to transfer into the bachelor degree program at a later date - after they have demonstrated the appropriate standards pursuant to a Program Change Request Form.

Additional Audition/Interview/Portfolio Requirements by Degree Program
Program, Degree




Film and Television, B.F.A.
Interactive Media Arts, B.F.A., A.A.S.
Music, Mus.B.
  X X
Music Education, Mus.B. X       X X
Theatre Arts, B.F.A. X   X X X  

Additional Admission Standards for Music Education (K-12) Applicants

Candidates for admission to the Music Teacher Education Program are expected to have earned a New York State Regent’s Diploma (or the equivalent for applicants from other states) with a minimum unweighted high school grade point average of 80%. Music Education applicants should also, pass a comprehensive audition and interview, and have such other credentials as shall be acceptable to the Music Education Department Chair. Transfer students should have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher from a regionally accredited college or university.

Additional Requirement for Homeschooled Applicants

Five Towns College welcomes homeschooled applicants who have completed a secondary school education in a homeschool setting that is treated as a homeschool or a private school under state law in the jurisdiction in which they reside. Homeschooled applicants must meet all of the requirements for admission as set forth in this Catalog. 

If the student is from a state that issues a secondary school completion credential to homeschools, a secondary school completion certificate is required. As established by the New York State Education Department (CEO 02-06), homeschooled students cannot receive a high school diploma. Only public schools or registered nonpublic schools are permitted by law and regulation to issue diplomas. Self-reporting homeschooling is not acceptable for financial aid purposes. To establish eligibility for New York State student aid (not the issuance of a postsecondary degree), the following options are available to a homeschooled student in New York State:

  • Obtain a letter from local school district officials confirming that the student has received an education “substantially equivalent” to instruction given to students graduating high school in the public schools;
  • Take and pass the GED/TASC test; or
  • Achieve a satisfactory score on an ability-to-benefit test approved by the U.S. Secretary of Education (may not be used for admissions purposes at Five Towns).
In addition, homeschooled applicants should submit:
  • A transcript from a reputable home school correspondence/umbrella program, or a detailed roster of academic coursework at the secondary level;
  • Other formally presented work of any kind that well represents the range of academic and extracurricular accomplishment;
  • A short narrative, written by the person other than the applicant who has been most responsible for the student’s academic life, describing the nature of the applicant’s secondary level education. The document should not be a recommendation, but rather a description of your instruction in recent years
  • Scores from nationally recognized standardized tests, such as the ACT or SAT, and/or results from New York State Regent’s Examinations or similar state assessments.

International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program (DP)

Five Towns College recognizes the IB DP and will award academic credit for the International Baccalaureate curriculum. The IB curriculum consists of six subject areas. Each area may be awarded six (6) semester credits for those students who earn a score of 4 or higher on the Higher-Level Examinations, provided that such credit is applicable towards the student’s degree program.

Concurrent High School Students

In rare cases, the College will admit high school students to enroll concurrently at the College prior to earning a high school diploma. In such cases, students attend as non-matriculated students, but are subject to all of the policies and regulations pertaining to regular students. In such cases, the student does not receive an offer of admission. Rather, the high school issues a written consent to the College, whereby it certifies that upon the completion of specified Five Towns College courses it will issue a high school diploma. Concurrent High School Students are not eligible for financial aid.

Typically, such students must be at least 17 years of age and have compelling reasons for concurrent enrollment. Five Towns College is highly selective when approving Concurrent High School Students. Concurrent High School Students typically are approved for one semester. Upon the successful completion of the semester and award of a high school diploma, these students may apply for matriculation. Prospective students interested in this program should consult with the Director of Admissions for additional information.

Exceptionally Talented High School Students Early Enrollment Track

Exceptionally talented high school students or adult learners with compelling reasons for not completing high school prior to matriculation may be admitted to the College with permission of the Provost, provided that they pursue a program of study that also leads to the New York State General Equivalency Diploma within one year of entering the College. Students admitted through the Exceptionally Talented Track are not eligible for Financial Aid until they have earned the GED/TASC.

As established by Section 100.7 of the Regulations of the New York State Commissioner of Education, a Five Towns College student can receive a high school equivalency diploma when the student has completed 24 college credits as a recognized candidate for a degree at the College. If a student never completed high school or is otherwise unable to document high school completion, the college can admit a student, and once the student has completed 24 college credits as the equivalent of having the GED, the student is eligible for NYS TAP, provided the credits satisfy the appropriate course distribution requirements specified in section 100.7 of the Commissioner’s Regulations as amended.

The required distribution is 6 credits of English, 3 credits of math, 3 credits of natural science, 3 credits of social science, 3 credits of humanities, and 6 credits applicable to the student’s program.

Rolling Admission

The College is guided by a rolling admission policy that allows applicants for admission to be filed at any time. Applicants seeking to begin their studies in any fall semester are encouraged to file a complete application no later than April 1. Spring semester applicants should file by January 1. All supporting materials, including auditions, interviews, portfolio reviews, and letters of recommendation should be on file for an application to be deemed complete. Admissions decisions are generally provided within two to four weeks thereafter.

Due to the nature of performing arts and skills-based programs, the College may establish enrollment caps for various programs from time-to-time. In furtherance thereof, the College reserves the right to close admission to any program prior to the published deadlines. Students seeking admission to performance and skills-based programs are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

Offers of Admissions

Offers of admission are conveyed in writing and signed by the Director of Admissions. A place will be held for admitted students for a period of 30 days. Applicants are required to accept the offer of admission within that period by submitting the required enrollment deposit.

Wait List

The number of seats available to new freshmen and transfer applicants in each degree program and major area of concentration are limited. Students placed on the wait list are notified as soon as a place becomes available, but typically by May 1 for fall admission and January 2 for spring admission.

Admission by Degree Program and Undeclared Majors

Five Towns College admits students into a specific degree program and/major area of concentration (major or concentration). New students seeking to change degree programs and/or majors prior to the first semester of study should contact the Admissions Office. After the start of classes, students seeking to change degree programs and/or majors must file a Program Change Request Form with the Registrar’s Office. Students seeking to change degree programs or majors must meet the admissions standards in effect for the new program at the time of application. Decisions consider many factors, including the availability of seats in the new program of study.

Five Towns College does not accept undeclared majors. Prospective students who are uncertain of their career choices and who prefer to sample the curriculum prior to choosing a degree program are encouraged to consider enrolling in the program in Liberal Arts leading to the A.A. degree, since this program provides the widest range of elective choice and transfer-up opportunities.


Students seeking to return to the College after withdrawing, resigning, or having been dismissed are deemed to have surrendered their matriculated status and must file an Application for Readmission. Five Towns College is selective in its readmission practices. Former students have no expectation of readmission. Unless permission is granted in writing, readmitted students are governed by the College Catalog in publication at the time of readmission, and not by their original Catalog.

Students who withdrew in good academic standing and seek to return within one year meet with the Registrar’s Office to process their Application for Readmission, update their files, and to register for classes.

Students who were not in good academic standing or who resigned or were dismissed for any reason, or those who seek to return after a period of more than one year are processed through the Admission’s Office. These applicants must provide a letter that fully explains the circumstances surrounding the interruption of their studies that documents how any obstacles to their academic success have been resolved. In cases involving medical, legal, family, or financial difficulties, a letter from a third-party on official letterhead stationary should be submitted in support of the Application for Readmission. Letters from healthcare providers, attorneys, courts, governmental agencies, clergy and public officials are most helpful.

Upon receipt of an Application for Readmission, the Academic Standards Committee will conduct a full review of the applicant’s academic, disciplinary and financial record with the College. In appropriate circumstances, the Office will determine how much prior coursework must be made up to allow the applicant to regain Satisfactory Academic Standing with the College. A diagnostic examination designed to evaluate subject-matter knowledge may also be required. The College reserves the right to deny an Application for Readmission for any reason, in the exercise of its sole discretion.

An Application for Readmission may be made at any time. Decisions are made on a rolling basis. All students applying for readmission to Five Towns College must pay a non-refundable, $35.00 Application for Readmission Fee.

Multiple Learning Modality

Five Towns College offers a distributed and multiple learning modality. As such, classes are offered in a traditional on-ground format, and in a fully online or hybrid format. Students who enroll at Five Towns College do so with the acceptance and understanding that any and all coursework offered by the College may be delivered in any of these formats, or in such other formats as may be developed. When a course is offered in a fully online or hybrid format, the College may then also offer the course in a traditional on-ground format when it determines that there is a sufficiency of enrollment.

Students attending online and hybrid courses acknowledge that a personal camera and a microphone are course requirements, and that these devices must be functional and turned on during the class session. Students who do not have such equipment may be removed from the class session. Regardless of the course modality, students in any class consent to the recording and archiving of the course and their participation therein, and that the College may, subsequently, make use of that archival material for any educational purpose it determines to be appropriate in the exercise of its sole discretion, without exception, royalty, or other fee.

During periods of a declared public emergency, the College reserves the right to change the learning modality of any class without advance notice. Tuition and fees paid to the College shall not be adjusted as a result of learning modality or change in learning modality.

Residency Requirements

Degree Program Residency Requirement

Students must complete their last 30 credits in residence in order to be eligible for an associate degree; 60 credits for a baccalaureate degree. Master’s degree candidates may be permitted to transfer up to 12 credits from other acceptable institutions. Doctoral program candidates seeking to transfer credit should make a written request prior to matriculation at the College. Transfer credit decisions for doctoral candidates are made on a case-by-case basis for good cause shown.

Major Area of Concentration Residency Requirement

Students must complete the last 50% of any major area of concentration in residence in order to have the major area of concentration noted on their official transcript.

Degree/Program Change Form

Students are admitted into Five Towns College by degree and program, based upon the supporting materials submitted with their Application for Admission. Students who seek to change their degree and/or their major area of concentration are required to file a Degree/Program Change Form and to obtain the prior approval of the Division Chair and College Registrar. When changing programs and majors, students are required to meet the admissions standards for the new program/major in effect at the time they seek to change. Since changing programs may impact a student’s class standing and financial aid eligibility, they are encouraged to also meet with their Academic Advisor and Financial Aid Office prior to changing programs.

Gainful Employment Disclosures

In accordance with federal regulations, Five Towns College discloses information regarding the cost, financing, and completion rates for students enrolled in each of its programs. These Gainful Employment Regulation disclosures are published on the College website. Prospective students are advised to review these disclosures at prior to enrolling at Five Towns College.

Student Retention and Graduation

Rising academic standards and significant investments in faculty, technology, and infrastructure over the last decade have led to higher persistence, retention, and graduation rates across the institution. Of the First-Time Full-Time Freshman (FTF) who entered a bachelor’s degree program offered by the College for the Summer and Fall 2022 semester, 75% returned for the Fall 2023 semester. That retention rate, disaggregated by academic division is approximately as follows: Business Division 68%, Film and Television Division 59%, Interactive Media Arts Division 75%, Mass Communication Division 83%, Music/Music Education Division 100%, and Theatre Arts Division 100%. While the College’s overall on-time Graduation Rate for FTF who entered during the Summer and Fall 2019 semester is 43%, the 150% rate tracked by the United States Department of Education for the FTF Summer and Fall 2017 Semester is 49%. The College submits updated data to the National Center for Educational Statistics. Information about its Rates can be found here:

Placement of Graduates

Five Towns College regularly conducts surveys to determine its career placement rates for those students who enter the College as first-time full-time freshman bachelor degree candidates, and who then graduate within 150% of the time normally allotted for program completion. The surveys are conducted using a variety of methods including email, telephone calls, formal graduate surveys, and a review of professional social media websites such as

A survey was conducted of the first-time full-time freshman who began their studies in the Fall 2017 semester and graduated by 2023. Of those graduates, 43% (N=29) responded. Of those who responded, nearly 100% indicated that they were employed, with the survey data further revealing that 79% were employed in a job directly related to their program of study at the College. In addition to reporting placement rates for first-time, full-time freshman, because many students attend Five Towns College after transferring from another college or university, Five Towns also conducts a survey of all graduates, regardless of their freshman or transfer status or when they began their studies.

In addition to reporting placement rates for first-time, full-time freshman, because many students attend Five Towns College after transferring from another college or university, Five Towns also conducted a survey for graduates for each academic year. For the most recent closed academic year, 2021-22, of those graduates, 43 % (N=66) responded. Of those who responded, nearly 100% indicated that they were employed, with the survey data further revealing that 85% were employed in a job directly related to their program of study at the College.

Teacher Education Supply and Demand

The supply and demand for licensed teachers can vary greatly by subject, geographic area, and time period. Both the New York State Education Department and the New York City Education Department post online information regarding the job market for licensed teachers. Prospective, new and current students are advised to stay informed about the labor market supply and demand for licensed teachers in New York State by attending periodic job market seminars sponsored by both the Education Division and the Career Services Office, and by visiting the State and City Departments. Additional workforce and industry data is available here:[1].pdf. Additional workforce and industry data are available online from the New York State Department of Labor at

Immunization Requirements

In compliance with New York State Law and Regulations, all Five Towns College students born on or after January 1, 1957 must submit documentation acceptable to the New York State Department of Health of immunization against Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) before they may attend classes. Additional information about this mandatory requirement is available from the Admissions Office.

In addition, current revision of New York State Public Health Law (PHL) requires that all students sign a Meningococcal Meningitis Vaccination Response Form indicating whether or not they have been vaccinated to protect against meningitis. This inoculation is mandatory for all Residence Hall students.

This supports the institution’s mission that is committed to having a safe and secure campus and one that protects the health and wellness of everyone on campus. The exemptions as stated under NYS PHL 2165 are provided below. Should anyone seek either exemption, supporting documentation and the appropriate request must be submitted to the institution in writing for consideration and approval.

The College announces that, in the absence of governmental rules, regulations or laws, that it will require that all students, faculty and staff participating in any on-ground activities to demonstrate proof of a CDC approved COVID-19 vaccination as of the Fall 2021 semester.

Exemptions from Immunization Requirements

Any student or faculty member who participates in any activity offered or sponsored by the College without obtaining recommended or required immunizations, regardless of the reason – including medial or religious exemption, assumes all of the risks associated with such activity and expressly waives any liability on the part of Five Towns College, its employees, agents, and assigns that results therefrom.

Medical Exemption

If a licensed physician or nurse practitioner, or licensed midwife caring for a pregnant student certifies in writing that the student has a health condition which is a valid contraindication to receiving a specific vaccine, then a permanent or temporary (for resolvable conditions such as pregnancy) exemption may be granted. This statement must specify those immunizations which may be detrimental and the length of time they may be detrimental. Provisions need to be made to review records of temporarily exempted persons periodically to see if contraindications still exist. In the event of an outbreak, medically exempt individuals should be protected from exposure. This may include exclusion from classes or campus.

Religious Exemption

A student may be exempt from vaccination if, in the opinion of the Institution, that student or student’s parent(s) or guardian of those less than 18 years old holds genuine and sincere religious beliefs which are contrary to the practice of immunization. The student requesting exemption may or may not be a member of an established religious organization. Requests for exemptions must be written and signed by the student if 18 years of age or older, or parent(s), or guardian if under the age of 18. The institution may require supporting documents. It is not required that a religious exemption statement be notarized.

In the event of an outbreak, religious exempt individuals should be protected from exposure. This may include exclusion from classes or campus.

COVID-19 Testing Requirements

Five Towns College may require any student at any time, regardless of their vaccination or prior medical history, to be tested for COVID-19. Students who fail or refuse to participate in these texts may be barred from campus.

Coronavirus Social Distancing Requirements

The College fully adheres to the public health guidelines issued by the Center for Disease Control (CDC).  Periodically the College will issue rules and regulations in furtherance of CDC guidelines or those promulgated by the NYS Department of Health. In such instances, students are required to abide by such regulations.

International Students

Five Towns College is authorized by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to enroll non-immigrant students from other countries. Students from countries where English is not the native language must be able to demonstrate English language proficiency. Students can do this through one of the following; submit scores from an English language proficiency exam (i.e. TOEFL), or sit for an interview with a Five Towns College evaluator. Interviews via teleconference are also acceptable.

Foreign students must also be able to demonstrate sufficient financial resources to attend Five Towns College and to support themselves for the entire period of enrollment. Typically, international students document the ability of family or sponsors to support them. Foreign students seeking to transfer to Five Towns College from another post-secondary school within the United States must be in-status and eligible for a transfer I-20. International students are encouraged to contact the Five Towns College International Student Advisor early in the admissions process.

While International students attending Five Towns College on an F-1 Student Visa are eligible to apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT), the final decision on whether to grant OPT approval rests with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. As such, the College makes no guarantee that any international student attending the College will be approved for OPT.

Before an I-20 A/B Form is issued by the College, international students must submit proof of graduation or completion of a program of secondary-school studies equivalent to a U.S. High School Diploma. Such documentation must be evaluated by an Independent Third-Party Evaluation firm acceptable to the College. In addition, if such documentation is in a language other than English, it must also be accompanied by a certified English translation.

International Student Housing

International students seeking to remain in residence halls during the Winter Intersession and Spring Break may request this but it is subject to approval and payment of related costs. Please review the section about Intersession Housing.

Adult and Continuing Education (ACE) Admissions Pathway

Five Towns College offers a unique pathway for the admission of non-traditional adult learners seeking to continue their education.  To be eligible for this pathway, applicants must be:

  • at least 24 years of age;
  • employed full-time by an approved employer, which is a member of a participating chamber of commerce;
  • a high school graduate;
  • enrolled in one of the following three programs:
  • Liberal Arts (A.A.)
  • Business Administration (A.S.)
  • Business Management/ Marketing or Management concentration (A.A.S.)

Through ACE, Five Towns College seeks to remove the barriers to higher education faced by adult learners, particularly those from underrepresented and underserved communities.  For good cause shown, ACE student may receive:

  • reduced College Residency Requirements;
  • permission to transfer in credits older than 10 years;
  • permission to transfer in a limited number of credits where the course grade was less than “C”;
  • College subsidized tuition;
  • college credit for college-level knowledge acquired through expertise developed outside the classroom, in accordance with Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) best practices established by the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL);
  • such other accommodations as may be approved by ACE in advance and in writing.

If admitted through ACE, students agree to limit their student loan borrowing to no more than $100 per class to help defray the expenses for course materials, and to adhere to the degree program pathway designed for them by the ACE Office.  Admission to the College through ACE is limited, with preference given to students who have previously attended one of the regional community colleges.