The California State University is one of two public university systems in the state of California. With 23 CSU campuses serving over 400,000 students, it is the largest, most diverse, and one of the most affordable university systems in the country. The CSU offers bachelor's and master's degree programs in some 240 subject areas, as well as a variety of teaching credential programs. A select number of doctoral degrees are offered jointly with the University of California or with private universities in California.
The following information can help you learn more about how to meet requirements to enter a CSU campus as a transfer student, where the campuses are located, which academic programs are offered by each one, and how to apply for transfer.
Minimum CSU Transfer Eligibility Requirements
- 60 CSU-transferable units
- 30 General Education CSU-transferable units, completed with grades of "C" or better, which must include the "golden four":
- All of Area A (speech, composition, critical thinking)
- Area B4 (quantitative reasoning - college level math)
Note: Many CSUs now require that these four courses be completed by spring for fall transfer, by summer for spring transfer.
- All of Area A (speech, composition, critical thinking)
- 2.0 GPA for California residents
Recommended CSU Transfer Guidelines
- 60 CSU-transferable units for full junior standing
- 39 CSU-transferable General Education units completed and certified, of which 30 units (including the "golden four") must be with a "C" or better
- Lower division major preparation done
- 2.5+ GPA (Impacted majors and popular campuses may use additional "selection criteria", including a higher GPA and specific preparation.
See the list of impacted majors at https://www2.calstate.edu/attend/degrees-certificates-credentials/Pages/impacted-degrees.aspx.
Note: To graduate from a CSU, students are required to complete at least 9 units of upper division GE after transfer.
Make an appointment with a College of Marin counselor to make a two year educational plan detailing the courses you need to satisfy general education requirements and major preparation requirements by calling (415)485-9671 or by logging into your MyCOM portal.
Assist.org helps you find community college courses that are transferable to a UC or CSU campus and how those transferable courses might be used to satisfy subject matter requirements for specific majors or general education.
To access UC and CSU transferable course lists as well as general edcuation and major preparation recommendations and requirements:
- Start by selecting College of Marin (or another community college)
- Select the UC or CSU of your choice to view articulation agreements between the two institutions.
- Select By Major to view major prerequisites. The articulation agreements between schools will appear with the first selected school in the right hand column and second selected school in the left hand column.
- Select By Department to view department course equivalencies.
To Explore Majors Offered at UC and CSU Campuses:
Assist also provides information about majors offered at UC and CSU campuses. To explore majors, choose a specific major that interests you and a campus you are considering attending.
- Click on the green Explore Majors and then click Majors.
- To see a list of UC and CSU schools that offer the major you are interested in, choose a field of study from the drop down menu on the first screen. On the next screen, choose a specific discipline from that field of study.
- A list of all UC and CSU schools offering that major will appear. The school names will be listed after the major’s title. Click on the school name to access the articulation agreement with COM, to be provided with a link directly to that specific program’s website, and to get information on if IGETC is recommended or not.
- Click University of California Campuses from the top yellow ribbon to see a list of majors at each UC campus.
- Click California State University Campuses from the top yellow ribbon to see a list of majors at each CSU campus.
- Click California Community College Campuses from the top yellow ribbon to see which majors are offered by CSU and UC.
- Choose an Area of Study and click on Continue and then choose a Discipline and click on Continue.
- In the right hand column, you can clink on MP, or major preparation, to see the prerequisites that you need for a specific major at a CSU or UC.
The goal when applying for college admission is to make yourself as competitive as possible. When applying to the CSU system, this is especially important if the school or major you want is impacted.
Impacted programs and campuses are those that receive far more applications than there is space for. When campuses and porgrams are impacted, they will be more selective when admitting students and may use supplementary admissions criteria to screen applicants.
Currently, Fullerton, Long Beach, San Diego, San Jose, and San Luis Obispo are all impacted campuses. Other campuses of the 23 campus system have impacted majors. View the impacted undergraduate majors and campuses information at calstate.edu for more informatoin.
To be a more competitive applicant to impacted programs and campuses, students should:
- Complete as many of the major preparation courses as possible, and all of the courses if required by the program.
- Have regular meetings with a counselor to stay on track.
- Contact an admissions representative at the school, preferably one who works with transfer students regularly.
- Research the program's website to learn more about what they expect of their students.
- Find out if you will need to submit materials beyond the regular CSUmentor application to be considered for admission. Those extra materials, or extra applications, will be referred to as supplemental applications.
Students transferring to a CSU may complete their general education in one of several ways:
- Complete the minimum transfer eligibility requirements of 60 CSU transferable units which must include the golden four (speech, composition, critical thinking, and quantitative reasoning)
- Complete the CSU GE Breadth requirements
- Complete IGETC
Meet with a counselor to find out which is best for you.
Please note: CSU Breadth and IGETC are not an admissions requirement and are not recommended for all majors. Students majoring in STEM fields such as Engineering, Biological and Physical Sciences or majors that require extensive lower division preparation are not encouraged to follow IGETC. Make an appointment with a College of Marin counselor to see if IGETC is the right path for you.
The Associate of Arts for Transfer (AA-T) and Associate of Science for Transfer (AS-T) allow students to earn an associate degree and a bachelor's degree, with no wasted units. They are intended to make it easier for CSU-bound students to successfully transfer by having universal lower division major requirements for all 23 CSU campuses. Students can prepare to transfer to the CSU system using just one set of preparation courses for their major rather than having to meet different requirements for multiple campuses.
The AA-T and AS-T degrees offer a simple and direct path to transfer to the CSU system. Other benefits include:
- Guaranteed admission to a CSU, but not necessarily to a particular campus;
- GPA bump of .10 or .20 when applying to an impacted campus or major;
- Students can receive priority admissions to their local CSU campus to a major deemed similar to the AA-T or AS-T major;
- After transfer to CSU, guaranteed degree completion within 60 semester units at the CSU
Requirements for an AA-T or AS-T include:
- Completion of required general education coursework;
- Completion of the courses required for the specific AA-T/AS-T major;
- Completion of 60 CSU-transferable units;
- 2.0 GPA (Note: student’s GPA will need to be more competitive if applying to an impacted campus or major)
- Completion of all requirements by the end of the Spring semester if transferring in Fall
College of Marin currently offers the following AA-T and AS-T degrees:
- Business Administration, AS-T
- Communication Studies, AA-T
- Early Childhood Education, AS-T
- English, AA-T
- Geography, AA-T
- Kinesiology, AA-T
- Philosophy, AA-T
- Political Science, AA-T
- Psychology, AA-T
- Sociology, AA-T
For more information, visit A Degree with a Guarantee.
Fall Semester Transfer
- Meet with you counselor to verify that you meet transfer admissions eligibility
- Completion of Golden Four & 60+ CSU-transferable units by end of Spring 2015 for Fall 2015 admissions consideration
- Gather transcripts from all colleges attended (unofficial is fine)
- Calculate your CSU-transferable GPA from all colleges attended
- Determine if you will earn an AA-T or AS-T
- Confirm university application periods
- Attend transfer workshops (CSU and UC application, UC Personal Statement, and UC TAG)
October – November
- Priority application filing period for Fall term to CSU campuses is October 1 - November 30. It is highly recommended to apply early. Apply at Cal State Apply.
- Attend transfer workshops
- Attend Transfer Day and ask your questions to university and college representatives directly
- Visit Preview Days & take campus tours. Search for local university Preview Days through the Transfer Events Calendar
- Research housing and any other resources or services you will need
- Research scholarship opportunities for next academic year
- Develop a timeline reflecting important deadlines from present to entering the university
- Apply for Financial Aid (priority deadline is March 2)
- Apply for College of Marin graduation
- Not sure if you are eligible to earn a degree? Make an appointment with your counselor
- Research/Apply for scholarships, housing, etc.
- Follow all instructions and meet all deadlines given to you by each CSU campus. They may ask you to:
- Establish your student account. (Examples: SFSU Gateway, MySSU, MyCSUEB, MySJSU)
- Log in and check the account regularly.
Note: Avoid being denied admission by making sure you check your student account once a week and complete the requested To-Do’s well in advance of their posted deadline. Also, adjust your email filter or security preferences and check your SPAM folder for emails from the universities!
April – May
- Research/Apply for scholarships, housing, etc.
- RSVP for and attend the Transfer Recognition Reception at COM
- Review Financial Aid Award Offer
- CSU campuses make admissions decisions
- Make sure to follow through on meeting the minimum CSU eligibility requirements and keep up your GPA.
May – June
Deadlines to accept the admissions offer vary amongst the different CSU campuses. Some common final documents students may need to request are:
- Official transcripts from all colleges attended
- GE Certification
- Official high school transcript(s)
- AP, IB, TOEFL scores
- Submit Statement of Intent to Register (SIR)
- Register for transfer student orientation (bring unofficial transcripts)
- Register for classes (usually done at orientation)
- Check the csumentor.edu Filing Status Report to see which university is accepting spring applicants.