Undergraduate Application Procedures

Prospective students, applying for part-time or full-time undergraduate programs of study must submit a completed undergraduate application. Applying online via CAL STATE APPLY is expected unless electronic submission is impossible. Application in “hard copy” form may be obtained online via http://www.csumentor.edu as a portable data format (PDF). Application forms (in PDF) may also be downloaded from https://www.calstate.edu/sas/documents/applicationform-undergraduate-2017-2018.pdf. Paper applications should be mailed to the SDSU Office of Admissions. The $55 nonrefundable application fee must be paid by credit card or in the form of a check or money order payable to the California State University and may not be transferred or used to apply to another term. The applications of persons denied admission to an impacted campus may be re-routed to another campus, but only if the applicant is CSU eligible.

It is essential that the application be filled out completely and accurately. Misrepresenting oneself on the application will result in a revocation of admission regardless of when the misrepresentation is discovered.

On-time applicants may expect to receive an acknowledgment from the campuses to which they have applied within two to four weeks of filing the application. The notice may also include a request that applicants submit additional records necessary to evaluate academic qualifications. Applicants may be assured of admission if the evaluation of relevant qualifications indicates that applicants meet CSU admission requirements, and in the case of admission impaction, supplemental criteria for admission to an impacted program. Unless specific written approval/confirmation is received, an offer of admission is not transferable to another term or to another campus.
Students attending the Imperial Valley Campus who plan to transfer to the SDSU main campus must fill out a transfer request form. Currently, the SDSU main campus is impacted which requires applicants to meet selective admissions criteria above the minimum established by the California State University.
The CSU designates programs as impacted when more applications from regularly eligible applicants are received in the initial filing period (October and November) than can be accommodated. All majors at San Diego State University are impacted. Students who are admitted to SDSU are placed in a premajor (including undeclared).All premajors must meet department-specific criteria to move from the premajor to the major, such as a specified minimum grade point average, completion of prerequisite courses, tests, and completion of a certain number of units. Criteria are described in the “Courses and Curricula by Department” section of this bulletin or you may contact the major department for information. The CSU will announce during the fall filing period the supplementary criteria campuses will use for impacted programs. Detailed impaction information is available a thttps://www2.calstate.edu/attend/degrees-certificates-credentials/Pages/impacted-degrees.aspx. Information about the supplementary criteria is also provided to program applicants. For further information visit https://advising.sdsu.edu/majors/impacted_majors. Applicants must file applications for admission to an impacted program during the initial filing period. Applicants who wish to be considered in impacted programs at more than one campus should file an application at each campus for which they seek admission consideration.

Undergraduate Admission Requirements

First-Time Freshman Requirements

To review the requirements for First-Time Freshman, please go to the Imperial Valley University Partnership webpage at www.ivup.org.

Transfer Student Admission Requirements

Students who have completed 60 or more transferable semester college units (90 or more quarter units) are considered upper division transfer students. Students who complete college units during high school or through the summer immediately following high school graduation are considered first-time freshmen and must meet those admission requirements. Transferable courses are those designated for baccalaureate credit by the college or university offering the courses. The CSU General Education-Breadth (GE-Breadth) program allows California community college transfer students to fulfill lower-division general education requirements for any CSU campus prior to transfer. Up to 39 of the 48 GE-Breadth units required can be transferred from and certified by a California college. “Certification” is the official notification from a California community college that a transfer student has completed courses fulfilling lower-division general education requirements. The CSU GE-Breadth certification course list for particular community colleges can be accessed at http://www.assist.org . Transfer Admission Planner (TAP) program is provided to help you identify courses required to meet transfer admission requirements for SDSU.

Students who have completed fewer than 60 transferable semester college units (fewer than 90 quarter units) are considered lower division transfer students. San Diego State University is not accepting applications from lower division transfer students. (Due to enrollment pressures, many CSU campuses do not admit lower division transfer applicants.)
A student is considered an upper division transfer student if he/she has completed 60 or more semester units (or 90 or more quarter units) of transferable baccalaureate- level college work. In recent years, as the number of applicants has far exceeded the number of spaces available, it has become necessary to adopt admission standards which are more demanding than the minimum California State University (CSU) requirements. Per CSU Enrollment Policy, transfer admission priority is given to applicants whose previous coursework was completed at California community colleges. All students who are admitted to SDSU are admitted to a premajor. To be eligible for admission to SDSU, transfer applicants should meet the following minimum CSU eligibility requirements and SDSU requirements.

Apply during the CSU initial admission application filing period, October/November 2013 for fall 2014 admission. Submit a supplemental application through WebPortal, which is due by 6 p.m. (PST), January 23, 2014.

Complete a minimum of 60 transferable semester units by the end of Spring 2018. Transferable units are defined as course units that are applicable to a baccalaureate degree.

Complete a certified GE package of 39 units (CSU GE or IGETC) or any applicable lower division GE pattern listed in the SDSU General Catalog, including completion of the “Golden Four” General Education (GE) requirements in written communication, oral communication, critical thinking, and mathematics with a C or higher grade in each course by the end of spring 2014.

Complete all major preparation courses listed in the SDSU General Catalog by the end of the spring term prior to fall admission. If a major preparation course is not offered at your community college, you must take it at another local community college or via Cross Enrollment or Open University at SDSU by the end of spring 2014.
Meet the cumulative grade point average (GPA) required for the major as listed in the SDSU General Catalog. See http://www.sdsu.edu/majorgpa to determine the GPA required for your major. Your GPA is based on all transferable units attempted. a. For non-SDSU service area* applicants, an additional overall GPA will be required. This GPA is determined based on the applicant pool and may be higher than the GPA required for the major. b. All applicants must meet the required GPA at the time of application and maintain the GPA through the end of spring 2014. 6. Applicants with prior SDSU Regular Session, Special Session, Open University or Cross Enrollment, coursework must have a minimum SDSU GPA of 2.0 in addition to the cumulative GPA listed above.

Local, service-area* applicants who meet the criteria listed above and who meet the cumulative GPA required for the major or 2.4, whichever is higher will be guaranteed admission for fall 2014. All other applicants will be admitted on a space-available basis and must meet requirements (1) through (6) above.

* You are in SDSU’s service area if 100% of your transferable credits have been completed at Cuyamaca, Grossmont, Imperial Valley, San Diego City, San Diego Mesa, San Diego Miramar, and Southwestern colleges by the end of the spring prior to fall admission (e.g. spring 2014 for fall 2014 admission).

 The Transfer Admission Guarantee does not apply to applicants to the School of Nursing, Music and Dance, Television, Film and New Media, or any major for which there is an SDSU approved STAR Act (Associate of Arts-Transfer (AA-T)/Associate of Science-Transfer (AS-T) degree. 

Nursing applicants must complete a Nursing Program application and meet additional ranking criteria. See the School of Nursing website at http://nursing.sdsu.edu for details.

Music and Dance applicants must audition for acceptance to the major. For details, see the School of Music and Dance website at http:// music.sdsu.edu.

SDSU is only accepting applications for students seeking a second bachelor’s degree in nursing. • Students with international coursework must submit an international course evaluation report.

Student Transfer Achievement Reform (STAR) Act (SB 1440) 

The Associate in Arts for Transfer (AA-T) and the Associate in Science for Transfer (AS-T) degrees offered at the California Community College (CCC) are designed to provide a California community college student a clear transfer preparation and admission pathway to the CSU degree majors.

California Community College students who earn an associate degree for transfer (AA-T or AS-T) are guaranteed admission with junior standing to a CSU and given priority admission over other transfer applicants when applying to a local CSU campus, or non-impacted CSU program. AA-T or AS-T admission applicants are given priority consideration to an impacted campus/program or to campuses/programs that have been deemed similar to the degree completed at the community college. Students who have completed an AA-T/AS-T in a program deemed similar to a CSU major are able to complete remaining requirements for graduation within 60 semester units.

Admitted Upper Division Transfers

Transfer admission decisions are based on self-reported information. Admission is provisional pending verification of the self-reported information on the applicant’s CSUMentor and supplemental applications using the official transcript submitted to the Office of Admissions. Offers of admission will be rescinded if the GPA, completed courses, or course grades are lower than what is reported on the applications or if the student misses any admission deadlines.

Acceptance of Transfer Courses

Courses taken at a regionally accredited college or university and designated as appropriate for baccalaureate credit by that institution will be accepted by San Diego State University for credit toward transfer admission. San Diego State University reserves the right to determine the extent to which such credit satisfies the specific and elective requirements of degree programs.

Courses completed at regionally accredited institutions not offering the baccalaureate and at special-purpose baccalaureate-granting institutions are acceptable if specifically certified by the institution or by San Diego State University as similar in level and rigor to SDSU courses.

Courses completed at institutions without regional accreditation or taken at a regionally accredited institution as part of a professional program, i.e., medical, dental, legal, veterinary, optical, etc. are not normally accepted by San Diego State University. Such courses may be accepted on an individual basis if a review by the appropriate department determines comparability to a course in the San Diego State University curriculum.

Adult Students

As an alternative to regular admission criteria, an applicant who is 25 years of age or older may be considered for admission as an adult student if he or she meets all of the following conditions:

  1. Possesses a high school diploma (or has established equivalence through either the General Educational Development or California High School Proficiency Examinations).
  2. Has not been enrolled in college as a full-time student for more than one term during the past five years. Part-time enrollment is permissible.

  3. If there has been any college attendance in the past five years, has earned a grade point average of C or better in all college work attempted.
  4. Test results verifying completion of the current San Diego State University mathematics and writing competency requirements. Current competency requirements and minimum test scores are published in the General Catalog and each semester’s Class Schedule; the most recent published scores will be required. Applicants seeking admission as an adult student must submit a statement of no more than two pages describing the alternate preparation which the applicant feels has prepared him or her for successful university work. The statement should also describe the applicant’s educational goals and what preparation has been made to pursue these goals. Consideration for admission will be based upon a judgment as to whether the applicant is as likely to succeed as a regularly admitted freshman or transfer student and will include an assessment of basic skills in the English language and mathematical computation.

English Language Requirement

All undergraduate transfer applicants, whose native language is not English and who have not attended schools at the secondary level or above for at least two years of full-time study (only transferable courses count toward a student’s full-time status) where English is the principal language of instruction, must present a score of 550 or higher (using the paper version) or 80 or higher (using the Internet version) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or 6.5 or better on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Some majors may require a higher score. Some campuses may also use alternative methods of assessing English fluency.

Other Applicants

Applicants not admissible under one of the above provisions should enroll in a community college or other appropriate institution. San Diego State University also offers a special program designed to expand educational opportunity for capable persons who, for a variety of reasons, have not previously had the opportunity. For detailed information regarding admission to this program, refer to the section of the General Catalog on the Educational Opportunity Program.

Filing of Records

File Official Transcripts. You must file the following official transcripts with the Office of Admissions.

  1. Transcripts from all high schools attended (not required of the graduate student who holds a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, but is required of the student who holds a bachelor’s degree from a nonaccredited institution).
  2. Transcripts from EACH college attended (including extension, correspondence, summer session, evening, and out-of-country courses), even if no courses were completed. Graduate students must file transcripts if they plan to enter a master’s degree or credential program. Electronic transcripts are required from many colleges. Check the Office of Admissions website at http://www.sdsu.edu/admissions for a complete list.
  3. Photostat or true copy of the military separation form DD-214 (or equivalent), DD-295, SMART and AARTS transcripts if applicant has had active military service. (Not required of graduate students.)

For a hard copy transcript to be official, it must bear the high school or college seal and remain in its original sealed envelope. All records or transcripts received by the university become the property of the university and will not be released nor will copies be made.


May 1st - transcripts including Fall term grades
July 15 - transcripts of Sprint term grades
May 1st - transcripts including Fall term grades and works in progress
June 30 - transcripts of Spring term grades
All needed documents must be on file no later than May 1st for the Fall semester

Graduate and Post-Baccalaureate Admission Requirements