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California State University (CSU)

Admissions and Related Information

Why choose CSU?

The CSU is a leader in high-quality, accessible, student-focused higher education. With 23 campuses, almost 447,000 students, and 45,000 faculty and staff, they are the largest, the most diverse, and one of the most affordable university systems in the country.

Admission/Cal State Apply
A free online resource to help students and their families learn about the CSU system, select a CSU campus, plan to finance higher education, review fees and cost of attendance, and apply for admission.

Admission Requirements
Undergraduate admission requirements, including freshman and transfer information, for the 23 CSU campuses. 

Financial Aid 

Information on financial aid resources available to students at the CSU. Also included is the average cost of attendance by CSU campus and information on fees and non-resident tuition (tuition is not charged to California residents).

Impaction Information 
Click here to get the latest information on Impacted Campuses and Programs.

Application Guide for 2023-24 Admission

This guide walks first-time freshman through completing most parts of the Cal State Apply application, including: preparing to apply, first steps in your application, completing the Academic History, Supporting Information, and Program Materials quadrants (quadrants 2, 3 and 4), and lastly, submitting your application.  2023-24 GUIDEBOOK

Freshman: Testing Requirements

The California State University (CSU) no longer uses ACT or SAT examinations in determining admission eligibility for all CSU campuses. If accepted to a CSU campus, ACT or SAT test scores can be used as one of the measures to place students in the proper mathematics and written communication courses.  Visit the CSU Student Success site for further information on course placement. For more information on admission criteria, please visit the First-Time Freshman Guidance and the First-Time Freshman Frequently Asked Questions  pages. 

  1. The CSU will consider course grades of “credit” or “pass” as fulfilling “a-g” requirements for those courses completed during Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall 2020 terms and during Winter, Spring or Summer 2021 terms. All other coursework must be graded and a grade of C- or better must be earned for the course to satisfy “a-g” requirements. Grades of credit/pass or no credit/no pass will not be included in the calculation of high school GPA.
  2. The CSU strongly recommends that ALL students enroll in a yearlong senior-year English course and a mathematics/quantitative reasoning course as student-specific Early Assessment Program (EAP) guidance may not be available at the time of senior year course registration. These courses could include Expository Reading and Writing (ERWC), Math Reasoning with Connections (MRWC), weighted honors and International Baccalaureate (IB) and Advanced Placement (AP) or other advanced courses.
  3. The California State University (CSU) no longer uses ACT or SAT examinations in determining admission eligibility for all CSU campuses.  First-time freshmen must meet the following eligibility requirements: be a high school graduate or equivalent; complete the 15-unit comprehensive “a-g” pattern of college preparatory course; and earn a qualifying “a-g” grade point average (GPA) as described below.
    • California residents and graduates of California high schools will be eligible for admission by earning a 2.50 or greater “a-g” GPA.
    • Any California high school graduate or resident of California earning a GPA between 2.00 and 2.49 may be evaluated for admission based upon supplemental factors such as number of courses exceeding minimum “a-g” requirements, household income, extracurricular involvement, and other available information that would inform the campus admission decision. Each CSU campus will determine the supplemental factors used with GPA to determine eligibility in these cases and communicate these criteria publicly for prospective students.
    • Non-California residents may be eligible for admission to the CSU by earning a 3.00 or greater “a-g” GPA along with other supplemental factors utilized by the individual campus, including those outlined by impacted campuses and programs.
  4. Campuses and programs designated as impacted may utilize higher “a-g” GPA thresholds for applicants, as well as identify supplemental criteria and their relative weights, in making admission decisions. However, in no case will standardized test scores be utilized in making admissions decisions.
  5. The CSU will continue to honor Advanced Placement exams on which scores of 3, 4, or 5 are earned, regardless of the delivery mode of the exam.
CSU Overview

CSU Major Selection


All CSU campuses admit student's according to major.  Each major at each campus will have a different Eligibility Index required for admission.  A good rule of thumb is to apply for the major that you are most interested in, but choose an alternate major that is not impacted (if possible).  Keep in mind that Cal Poly Pomona, our local CSU, will look at intended major ONLY.

Search of CSU System by majors

CSU impaction

When the number of applications received from qualified applicants is greater than the number of available spaces, a campus is considered “impacted”.

An impacted campus is allowed to use additional criteria to screen applications - usually a higher GPA and test score.

All undergraduate programs, pre-programs, and undeclared/undecided programs are impacted for the following campuses:

  • Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
  • Fresno State
  • CSU Fullerton
  • Cal State LA
  • CSU Long Beach
  • San Diego State University
  • San José State

CSU Impacted Majors Search

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JUNIOR Presentation
An idea of one family's Cal Poly Pomona experience