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Enrollment Tutorial

Welcome to Academic Advising

This Tutorial is designed to ensure you have and understand the courses/requirements needed to earn your bachelor's degree from CSUSM, as well as the tools needed to identify and self-enroll in your first semester courses. Please complete this Tutorial so you are ready to self-enroll in your classes on December 14, 2020 or as soon as possible after that.

After you have completed the mandatory Tutorial,  you will have ongoing access to Academic Advising services beginning Thursday, December 10, 2020.

Course enrollment will not take place at Orientation.

New Student Course enrollment begins on December 14, 2020.

While you may begin the course enrollment process on your assigned course enrollment date/time, please remember that course enrollment is a process. Finalizing your schedule may continue until the beginning of the Spring 2021 semester and this is normal for many of our majors. Begin your course enrollment on your assigned date and time, enrolling in your Degree Planner suggested courses. Enroll in courses open now. You may also wish to waitlist courses. Regularly check the class schedule for new courses that may be added in December and January.
Attend one of our Enroll the Cougar Way Workshops to learn how to enroll in classes at CSUSM before your first term! December 14, 2020 at 9:00am or December 14, 2020 at 1:00pm.

Click the "plus icon" icon below to expand each section.


    There are 3 components to earning a degree at CSUSM: University Requirements, General Education Requirements and Major and/or Minor Requirements.

    components pie chart


    Diversity & Equity Requirement:

    Students must satisfy two Diversity and Equity requirements by taking two courses certified for Diversity and Equity in the United States (DEu) and Diversity and Equity in Global Contexts (DEg). Diversity and Equity certified courses can double-count with other general education, major, minor and/or elective courses.

    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!

    Unit Requirement:

    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.


    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 on our GE Worksheets, your Academic Requirements Report (ARR) and your Degree Planner.

    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

    For Area E, the majority of first year students take GEL 101, a course designed to assist in your transition to university life. We strongly recommend that first years students enroll in GEL 101 in the first semester. Liberal Studies – Elementary Subject Matter should take PE 203 for Area E. 

    Notes about your General Education Requirements:

    • A grade of C- or higher is required for courses used to satisfy the A1, A2, A3 and B4. If any general education courses are also counting towards your major and/or minor, a grade of C or higher is required. For Liberal Studies – Elementary Subject Matter majors, all General Education requirements and major courses must be passed with a C or higher. 
    • There are 3 upper-division GE courses listed above (BB, CC, DD). These requirements are not to be taken until after you have completed GE Areas A1, A2, A3 and B4. First year students should not enroll in BB, CC or DD courses in their first semester.


    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. 


    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.

    First Year Student
    Graduation Goal 
    (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*
    Transfer Student
    Graduation Goal 
    (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.


    Enrolling the Cougar Way:

    You'll enroll in classes using your Degree Planner, an individualized plan based on your specific graduation requirements.


    1. Login to MyCSUSM go to Student Center Click Degree Planner and follow prompts Continue

    2. View the upcoming semester plan. For each “Not Selected” requirement line, click Select and choose any course from the list. All listed courses will meet a graduation requirement.


    3. Once all courses are selected for the upcoming semester, click on   Schedule Assistant   at the top of the page.   Open Schedule Assistant  (Enable pop-ups).  Save and Continue  for location (Main Campus).

    First-time Freshmen, please note: A few classes may be tagged “Required” in your Schedule Assistant.

    4. Use the “ click here ” link in the message box located under the Courses section to import the selected courses from Degree Planner. 

    5.  Generate Schedules . A list of possible schedule combinations will display.

    6. Click  View , choose a class schedule, and  Send to Shopping Cart . A prompt will display to leave Schedule Assistant and return to MyCSUSM to proceed with enrollment.


    7. Import Cart.

    8. Click  Next  for each class to add them to the Shopping Cart. 

    9.  Proceed to Step 2 of 3.  

    10.  Finish Enrolling .

    Check  My Class Schedule  to view your enrollment status. Be sure to check back regularly for updates (location changes, class status, and waitlist position).  


    Enrollment Instructions Visual Aid (PDF)

    Attend an Enroll the Cougar Way Workshop on December 14, 2020.

    Visit the How to Enroll website for more information about the advising tools. 

    TRANSFER STUDENTS:  If you believe you have taken a course that meets a requirement for your major from a school outside the California Community College system, please refer to the following instructions: Major Course Approval Request Form

    Visit the Enrollment Tips website for additional enrollment strategies, including waitlisting, adding and dropping courses, and finding other class options to build your schedule. 

    Newly Added Spring 2021 Courses


    Ways to Virtually Connect With Us:

    Beginning December 10, 2020, we are offering the following advising services for new students who have completed the Enrollment Tutorial.

    virtual front deskVirtual Front Desk

    Message the Virtual Front Desk on Microsoft Teams, a public channel to ask general questions. Please do not share confidential information. 

    Email iconEmail an Advisor (eAdvisor)

    An Academic Advisor will answer your question as soon as possible via email.

    Engineering Majors: Please contact Jeffrey Morales at for Academic Advising.

    virtual drop-ins Virtual Drop-in Advising

    Fifteen-minute Virtual Drop-in Advising for incoming Spring 2021 new students will begin December 10, 2020. 

    Date Time
    Thursday, December 10: 9-11:30 am & 1:30-3:30 pm 
    Monday, December 14: 9-11:30 am & 1:30-3:30 pm 
    Tuesday, December 15: 9-11:30 am & 1:30-3:30 pm 

    Engineering Majors: Please contact Jeffrey Morales at for Academic Advising.

     schedule an appointment  Schedule a Virtual Advising Appointment

    Thirty-minute Virtual Advising Appointments via Microsoft Teams will be limited because we are also offering Virtual Drop-in Advising.  If you are unable to schedule an appointment, visit us during Virtual Drop-ins.

    Engineering Majors: Please contact Jeffrey Morales at for Academic Advising.

    email a peerEmail a Peer Advisor

    Student to student support for basic questions and help with advising/enrollment tools.

Congratulations, you have almost completed the 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:

  1. You have reviewed all topics in this tutorial.
  2. You have or have attempted to self-enroll in your first semester courses on or soon after your enrollment date.
  3. You may access Academic Advising services after you have completed both of the above.
Fill out my online form.

thank you for completing the Enrollment Tutorial