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How To Apply

Admissions and Recruitment

The Office of Admissions and Recruitment offers a full array of services from the time of first contact until students register for their first semester.

All pre-enrollment services are housed in Cougar Central. Admissions and Recruitment is responsible for processing admission applications and for the evaluation of high school and transfer credits, but also offers a wide variety of services to prospective students who have not yet applied. Admissions information sessions, and campus tours are available to students seeking information about the University. Questions about majors offered, support services available, or the future development of the campus can also be addressed. In addition to the professional staff, the Pride Ambassadors are a group of continuing CSU San Marcos students who are available for these services.

Undergraduate Admission Requirements

Freshman Requirements

Generally, applicants will qualify for consideration for first-time freshman admission if they meet the following requirements:

  1. Have graduated from high school, have earned a Certificate of General Education Development (GED), or have passed the California High School Proficiency Examination; and:
  2. Have a qualifiable minimum eligibility index (see section on Eligibility Index in college catalog); and
  3. Have completed, with grades of C or better, in each of the courses in the comprehensive pattern of college preparatory subject requirements, also known as the “a-g” pattern

Transfer Requirements

Applicants who have completed fewer than 60 transferable semester college units (fewer than 90 quarter units) are considered lower-division transfer students. Applicants who have completed 60 or more transferable semester college units (90 or more quarter units) are considered upper-division transfer students. Applicants who complete college units during high school or through the summer immediately following high school graduation are considered first-time freshmen and must meet the CSU minimum eligibility requirements for first-time freshman admission. Transferable courses are those designated for baccalaureate credit by the college or university offering the courses and accepted as such by the campus to which the applicant seeks admission.

Admission and Application

Requirements for admission to California State University San Marcos are in accordance with Title 5, Chapter 1, Subchapter 3, of the California Code of Regulations. Complete information is available at CSU Mentor - Planning

Electronic versions of the CSU undergraduate and graduate applications are accessible at CSU Mentor. The CSUMentor system allows students to browse through general information about CSU’s 23 campuses, view multimedia campus presentations, send and receive electronic responses to specific questions, and apply for admission and financial aid.

Applying online via CSU Mentor is expected unless electronic submission is impossible. An acknowledgement will be sent when online applications have been submitted. Application in “hard copy” form may be obtained online via CSU Mentor as a portable data format (PDF). Application forms (in PDF) may also be downloaded from Puplications [paper applications should be mailed to the campus admission office(s)].