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Transfer Student

An upper-division transfer applicant is a prospective student who has taken college courses after the summer following their high school graduation.

Cal State San Marcos only accepts upper division transfer students who meet the admission eligibility criteria:

  • Completed 60 or more transferable semester (90 transferable quarter) units by the end of spring
  • Earned a cumulative transfer GPA of 2.0 or higher
  • In good standing at the last institution of attendance
  • Completed the four general education courses, known as the "Golden Four," with a "C" grade or higher
    • Oral Communication
    • Written Communication
    • Critical Thinking
    • Mathematics or Quantitative Reasoning
  • Completed all fall admission requirements by the end of the preceding spring term. Courses completed in summer will not be considered.

Applicants Outside of Local Admission Area (Impaction)

Prospective students from outside of CSUSM's local admission area are welcome to apply for admission during the priority application period. However, because we receive more applicants than we have available spots, they will only be considered if enrollment space is available after local service area applicants have been accommodated. Read more about local and non-local admission area, impaction criteria and impacted majors.

A transfer applicant is considered to be in our local admissions area if they complete 12 units at Palomar, MiraCosta or Mt. San Jacinto.  The 12 units can be completed all at once in your final semester, or completed ‘part-time’ over your final two semesters, earning 6 units each semester.  Units earned at other institutions during the same semesters will disqualify your local eligibility.

Apply for Admission

  • October 1 - November 30: Submit an application along with the $55 application fee to Cal State San Marcos on Cal State Apply .  You will receive an email confirmation once your application has been submitted.

Apply to CSUSM!

  • Before February 15: Submit official IB or AP test results if scores are needed to fulfill the "Golden Four" or 60 unit transfer requirements.

Check Your Application Status on MyCSUSM

MyCSUSM is an online student portal which provides you access to your student records, including the status of your application for admission, transcripts and other admissions materials.  Shortly after you submit your application, you will receive an email from the Student Technology Help Desk with instructions on how to access MyCSUSM.

If you are having trouble logging into MyCSUSM, please contact the Student Technology Help Desk at

Visit MyCSUSM and check your emails frequently for important information and updates!

Maintain Your Eligibility

Admission is based on information reported on official transcripts and self-reported information for planned and in-progress coursework from your application. Once you have been conditionally admitted, we verify this information against your final official transcripts. Please make sure to report accurate information.

Your admission may be rescinded for any of the following reasons:

  • Your cumulative GPA drops below 2.0
  • You miss any admissions deadlines
  • You earn D or F grades in any coursework needed to meet the "Golden Four"
  • You misreport and do not complete a required course

Update Your E-mail and Mailing Address

Important information from CSUSM will be communicated to you via e-mail. It is imperative that we have your correct e-mail and mailing addresses. To update your information, go to your Student Center on MyCSUSM and under 'General Information', edit account details.