This Tutorial is designed to ensure you have and understand the requirements needed to earn your bachelor's degree from CSUSM, as well as the tools needed to self-enroll in your first semester courses. This will be an extremely important investment of your time. Please set aside a minimum of 45 minutes to an hour to complete it in its entirety. Access to Academic Advising will be made available to new students once the Tutorial and self-enrollment into fall courses have been completed. It is in your best interest to complete this Tutorial and self-enroll in your classes as soon as possible.
USERNAME, PASSWORD & COUGAR EMAIL!
Before you can enroll in courses, make sure you have set up your CSUSM username and password. If you haven't already done this, please do so as soon as possible.
You'll also need to set up your Cougar email. The University, including your professors, will send all official University communication to your Cougar email address. Be sure to check it frequently.
To check your Cougar email, go to the CSUSM homepage, click on the Campus Apps icon on the top right of the page, then click on Student Email.
For help setting up your username, password and/or email, please visit: Technology Support for New Students
There are 3 components to earning a degree at CSUSM: University Requirements, General Education Requirements and Major and/or Minor Requirements.
Component 1: University Requirements
University Requirements at CSUSM include a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) and a unit requirement.
Minimum Grade Point Average:
Grades for major and/or minor coursework must be a “C” or higher.
Students at CSUSM must maintain a 2.0 minimum GPA (“C” average).
Failure to maintain a 2.0 GPA may result in academic probation or disqualification, even after your first semester!
The minimum number of overall units required to graduate at CSUSM is 120 units. After you have completed all of your general education and major requirements, you may still need additional electives to reach 120 units.
Component 2: General Education Requirements
General Education requirements are referred to as Areas A through E. You must complete all subsections of these areas prior to graduation. You can review your GE Requirements in our GE Worksheets, your Academic Requirements Report (ARR) and your Degree Planner (more on the ARR and Degree Planner below).
Area A: Basic Skills
A1 – Oral Communication
A2 – Written Communication
A3 – Critical Thinking
Area B: Math & Science
B1 – Physical Science
B2 – Biological Science
B3 – Science Lab
B4 – Mathematics
BB – Upper-division Mathematics or Science
Area C: Arts & Humanities
C1 – Fine Arts
C2 – Humanities
C3 – Language other than English
CC – Upper-division Arts or Humanities
Area D: Social Sciences
D7 – Interdisciplinary Social Science
Dh – United States History
Dc, Dg – U.S. Constitution/CA Government
DD – Upper-division Social Science
Area E: Lifelong Learning
Notes about your General Education Requirements:
For Liberal Studies – Elementary Subject Matter (LBST-ESM) majors, all General Education requirements and major courses must be passed with a C or higher. For Area E, LBST-ESM majors will take PE 203.
Component 3: Major and/or Minor Requirements
Every major and minor possesses their own particular set of requirements. They are listed in the catalog, major/minor worksheets, Academic Requirement Report and in your Degree Planner. Your Degree Planner will let you know which classes to take and when. More on the Degree Planner later!
MAJOR SPECIFIC INFORMATION
For students with the following majors, please review the below information prior to self-enrolling:
Are you Undecided on a Major?
It's okay to be Undeclared! During your first year, you will be able to sample a wide range of courses, many of which will count toward the general education requirements that you'll need for graduation Your Degree Planner will still recommend your first semester courses. Exploration and discovery are all part of your first year experience at CSUSM. As you take courses and adapt to college life, you will be gaining information and developing the life skills you need to be able to make good decisions. Along the way, we have excellent resources to help you decide what's right for you. Please visit the Undeclared Student website for more information.
For all other majors, click here to learn more about your program.
If you have questions about specific courses, please review the information in the "University Catalog" section below.
The CSUSM Course Catalog is an important document. It includes University policies and procedures, major and minor requirements as well as all of our course descriptions. The Catalog is completely online and can be accessed at any time.
Given you have been admitted to the Fall 2019 semester, you will follow the requirements listed in the 2019-2020 Catalog.
EXTERNAL EXAMINATIONS (AP, IB, CLEP)
If you took any CSUSM approved external exams (AP, IB, CLEP), be sure to send your official scores to CSUSM. To review how to send us your test scores and to see which exams count for credit, please visit the External Examination Credit page.
Setting a Pace That's Right for You
It's important you consider the other factors of your life when selecting your unit load. Different students require different paces, depending on outside obligations. Be sure to set a pace that works best for you.
(entering as a first-year student)
|Units Per Year||Units Per Semester|
|4 year pace||30||15|
|5 year pace||24||12|
|6 year pace||20||10*|
(entering as an upper-division transfer student)
|Units Per Year||Units Per Semester|
|2 year pace for ADT students||30||15|
|2 year pace for non-ADT||30||15|
*Twelve units or above is generally considered full-time for Financial Aid purposes.
Factors to Consider:
If you are planning to enroll in CHEM 150/150L , MATH 160, or a higher level language course, you may be required to take a placement exam.
General Chemistry Placement Exam (CPE):
If you have a major in which your Degree Planner suggests enrolling in CHEM 150/150L: General Chemistry and General Chemistry Lab, the prerequisite for this course is a score of above 50% on the CPE, or completing CHEM 101 or CHEM 105 with a minimum grade of C. Please visit the following webpage: Chemistry Placement Exam to register for the CPE and for more information.
Math Placement Exam (MPE):
If you have a major in which your Degree Planner suggests enrolling in MATH 160: Calculus with Applications, the prerequisite for this course is a passing score on the Math Placement Exam or completing Math 125 or 126 with a minimum grade of C. Students who have taken pre-calculus in high school are encouraged to take the Math Placement Exam in lieu of taking Math 125. Please visit the following webpage: Math Placement Exam to register for the MPE and for more information.
Language Placement Exam:
If your major requires an intermediate language, it will be displayed in your Degree Planner. If you are unsure of which level language to enroll in, we recommend you consider taking a Language Placement Exam. For more information, please review Language Placement Exam for specifics.
OVERVIEW OF THE ADVISING AND ENROLLMENT TOOLS
ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS REPORT (ARR)
Your Academic Requirements Report, more commonly known as the ARR, is an advising tool that tracks the completion of all your degree requirements, listing which courses have been satisfied, are in progress and which requirements have not yet been satisfied. It's also what CSUSM will use to evaluate your progress once you apply for graduation, so it's important you check your ARR often to ensure it's accurate.
You can find your ARR in your Student Center in myCSUSM.
If you find an error in your ARR, please submit an ARR Correction Form. An Academic Advisor will investigate and respond to you directly.
DEGREE PLANNER & SCHEDULE ASSISTANT
CSUSM offers several online advising tools that will help you enroll in courses. They include the Degree Planner and the Schedule Assistant.
Your Degree Planner is an interactive online tool that displays the requirements for your major, minor (if applicable), and general education in a recommended sequence using information from your student record. It even recognizes the courses you've already taken at CSUSM, test credit, transfer credit, course substitutions, and prerequisites to recommend an education plan designed just for you! The Degree Planner is also important because the University uses your course plan to schedule the courses you need each semester. Your Degree Planner can be accessed in your Student Center in myCSUSM.
Features of the Degree Planner:
Schedule Assistant Features:
HOW TO ENROLL IN COURSES
Now that you have reviewed the requirements for your degree, as well as the tools we have for you to enroll, you are ready* to begin self-enrolling in your courses.
*You may begin enrolling in classes as soon as you have received your enrollment appointment date. Your specific enrollment appointment date and time will be sent to your Cougar email and can also be found in your Student Center in myCSUSM.
The following resources will guide you, step-by-step, on how to to self-enroll in the University's recommended courses for your first semester:
How to Enroll the Cougar Way:
This video provides information on waitlisting, navigating the Schedule Assistant, generating schedules, arranging your plan, etc.
If you feel like you may want additional help understanding how to enroll in classes using these tools, you are welcome to attend a workshop on How to Enroll the "Cougar Way".
On rare occasions, students have taken coursework outside of the California Community College system that may meet major specific requirements. If you have taken courses at another institution (not a California Community College), that you believe satisfies a major or minor requirement, please submit one of the following Major Course Approval Request Forms depending on your major:
Major Course Approval Request Form for students with Majors in the College of Science and Mathematics (Applied Physics, Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, Biotechnology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Engineering, Mathematics): CSM Course Approval Request Form
Liberal Studies majors: LBST Course Approval Form
All other majors: Major Course Approval Request Form
ACKNOWLEDGMENT SUBMISSION (REQUIRED)
Congratulations! You have almost completed the New Student Advising and Enrollment Tutorial! The last step is to submit an acknowledgment that you have read and understand the advising and enrollment expectations required of you.
With your submission, you are acknowledging: