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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 to non-impacted campuses based upon supplemental factors (see below).
  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.

Impacted campus and major criteria for csu

CSU campuses are now calculating a Multi-Factor Admission Score (MFAS) based on a number of factors. MFAS is being used for impacted campuses and programs as well as for students with a GPA lower than 2.5. Campuses determined their specific value scale so that each variable can be quantified, and an objective review of applicants can take place. CSU campuses evaluated the admission factors that were available, based on admission application information, and chose a combination of factors that would work best for the campus. The factors that campuses can consider are as follows:

1. “a-g” GPA

2. Math/Quantitative reasoning GPA

3. English GPA

4. Laboratory science GPA

5. History GPA

6. Language other than English (LOTE) GPA

7. “a-g” courses beyond 15 years/30 semesters

8. Math/Quantitative reasoning courses

9. History courses

10. Language other than English (LOTE) courses

11. College Promise/Partnership programs

12. Free and Reduced Lunch School (66%+)

13. First generation student status

14. Qualification for an application fee waiver

15. Participation in college preparation educational programs

16. Foster youth student

17. Military status

18. Work experience 

19. Extracurricular activities 

20. Leadership roles21. Local Admission Priority (if applicable)

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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