FAL/FAN Hard Block Student Information

FAL/FAN X99 Hard Block

If you were admitted to SFU without either or both of the designations FAL X99 and/or FAN X99, you must meet these requirements within your first three (3) enrolled terms at SFU.  Students who do not comply with this requirement will be given a final notice in their third (3) enrolled term before being ‘hard-blocked’ for future enrollment at SFU.

Once this has happened, you will NOT be able to enroll in any SFU course until you either:

  • attain your FAL/FAN designation outside of SFU, or
  • sign the FAL/FAN contract, agreeing to complete the FAN X99 and/or FAL X99 course(s) at SFU.

For details on both options, please see below. 

A. Options for Completing FAL and/or FAN X99 outside of SFU

1) Enrolling at another post-secondary institution:

You may enroll at another post-secondary institution, such as a college, and take the appropriate transferable course(s) that will give you the designation(s) of FAL and/or FAN X99, as well as credit toward your degree.

To meet FAL X99, you may take either:

  • a college English course that transfers to SFU as English (ENGL) credit, regardless of being Writing (W) designated or not. Minimum grade of a C- required, OR
  • any college course that transfers to SFU as a certified W course. Minimum grade of a C- required.

To meet FAN X99, you may take:

  • a college course that transfers to SFU as a certified Quantitative (Q) course. Minimum grade of a C- required.

If you choose this method, you do not need to obtain a Letter of Permission (LOP) in order to transfer back the required course(s) that provide your FAL X99and/or FAN X99 designation(s). However, if you wish to take further course work, you will need to apply for permission to do so through a Letter of Permission (sfu.ca/students/forms) under “Continuing Undergraduate Students”). If you are On Academic Probation (OAP), you will not be eligible for a Letter of Permission and can only transfer back the course(s) that provides you with the FAL X99 and/or FAN X99 designation(s).

Important: Are you seeking to attain your FAN X99 designation via a non-Math college course? If so, you may be restricting your ability to take SFU MATH courses. Check with the Math department about what is or isn't acceptable prior to enrolling in any outside non-Math 'Q' course if you intend to take SFU MATH courses such as MATH 100 or MATH 190. For contact information, please see our contacts page: sfu.ca/students/academicadvising/contact_us.html


2) Upgrading high school grades:

Your second option would be to complete the appropriate high school course(s) that would give you the designation(s) FAL X99 and/or FAN X99. This can be completed through British Columbia’s Adult Education programming.

  • To satisfy FAL X99 you must complete English 12 or English 12 Literature with 75% or better, including provincial exam.
  • To satisfy FAN X99 you must complete MATH 11 or 12 with 70% or better.

The transcript of this completion must then be submitted to SFU Admissions.

If you are an international student and wish to upgrade your high school grades in Canada, you must first apply to change the conditions of your study permit.  Please speak with an International Student Advisor for details.


3) Writing a proficiency test:

FAL X99:

You may obtain FAL X99 through completing the IELTS exam with a minimum score of 7.0 with no section less than 6.5. 

FAN X99:

You may obtain FAN X99 through completing the Quantitative Placement Test (“Q” test).  This option may be attempted one time only. Therefore, students who have completed this test before are not eligible to attempt it a second time. For more information please see: 


B. Appealing the FAL/FAN X99 Block:

If you would rather complete FAL X99 and/or FAN X99 at SFU, you will need to meet with an Academic Advisor. If you agree to the terms and conditions, you will then sign a contract allowing you to enroll in the course version of FAL X99 and/or FAN X99.

The agreement states:

  1. You will enroll in all missing designations, FAL and/or FAN X99, for the upcoming term.
  2. You will enroll in both designations concurrently should you be lacking both designations.
  3. If in good academic standing, all additional course requests must be approved by the academic advisor.
  4. If on academic probation, you can only enroll in a maximum of three (3) courses, including FAL and/or FAN.
  5. If you do not comply with the terms listed in the contract, you will be blocked again from course enrollment.

To remain unblocked, you will need to attain a minimum grade of a C or better in the course(s) FAL and/or FAN X99. Otherwise, you will need to complete one of the three choices listed above under Option A.

To discuss your options with an Academic Advisor, please login to Advisor Link and book an appointment with a Student Services Advisor: https://www.sfu.ca/students/academicadvising/contact.html. If you do not see a Student Services Advisor listed, please email us at myadv@sfu.ca to book an appointment.