Test Requirements

Freshman and transfer applicants who have fewer than 60 semester or 90 quarter units of transferable college credit are strongly encouraged to submit scores, unless exempt (see “Eligibility Index“), from either the ACT or the SAT of the College Board. Persons who apply to an impacted program may be required to submit test scores and should take the test no later than November or December. Test scores also are used for advising and placement purposes. Registration forms and dates for the SAT or ACT are available from school or college counselors or from a CSU campus testing office, including the CSUN Testing Center. Or students may write to or call:

The College Board (SAT)
Registration Unit Box 6200
Princeton, New Jersey 08541-6200
(609) 771-7588
www.collegeboard.org

ACT Registration Unit
P.O. Box 414
Iowa City, Iowa 52240
(319) 337-1270
www.act.org

English Language Requirement

All undergraduate applicants whose native language is not English and who have not attended schools at the secondary level or above for at least three years full time where English is the principal language of instruction must present a score of 61 or above on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Some majors and some campuses may require a higher score. A few campuses may also use alternative methods of assessing English fluency: Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic), the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), and the International Test of English Proficiency (ITEP). Each campus will post the tests it accepts on its website and will notify students after they apply about the tests it accepts and when to submit scores.

CSU minimum TOEFL standards are:

Level Internet Paper
Undergraduate 61 500
Graduate 80 550

For the tests and minimum scores accepted by CSUN, see the International Admissions website.

Systemwide Placement Test Requirements

The CSU requires that each entering undergraduate, except those who qualify for an exemption, take the CSU Entry Level Mathematics (ELM) Examination and the CSU English Placement Test (EPT) prior to enrollment. These placement tests are not a condition for admission to the CSU, but they are a condition of enrollment. These examinations are designed to identify entering students who may need additional support in acquiring college entry-level English and mathematics skills necessary to succeed in CSU baccalaureate-level courses. Undergraduate students who do not demonstrate college-level skills both in English and in mathematics will be placed in appropriate remedial programs and activities during the first term of their enrollment. Students placed in remedial programs in either English or mathematics must complete all remediation in their first year of enrollment. Failure to complete remediation by the end of the first year may result in denial of enrollment for future terms. Students register for the EPT and/or ELM. CSUN may establish deadlines by which new students must register for and/or take placement exams as a requirement for enrollment. Questions about test dates and registration materials may be addressed to:

CSUN Testing Center
Bayramian Hall (BH) Room 190
(818) 677-2369
www.csun.edu/testing

English Placement Test (EPT)

The English Placement Test (EPT) is designed to assess the level of reading and writing skills of students entering the California State University. The CSU EPT must be completed by all non-exempt entering undergraduates prior to enrollment in any course, including remedial courses. Students who score 147 or above on the EPT will be placed in college-level composition classes.

Exemptions from the EPT are granted only to those who present proof of one of the following:

  • A score of “Exempt” or “Ready for college-level English courses” on the CSU Early Assessment Program (EAP) taken along with the English Language Arts California Standard Test in grade 11.
  • A score of “Conditionally ready for college-level English courses” or “Conditional” on the CSU Early Assessment Program (EAP) taken in grade 11, provided successful completion of the Expository Reading and Writing Course (ERWC), AP English, 1B English or an English course approved for extra honors weight on the University of California “a-g” Doorways course list.
  • A score of 500 or above on the critical reading section of the College Board SAT Reasoning Test.
  • A score of 22 or above on the American College Testing (ACT) English Test.
  • A score of 3 or above on either the Language and Composition or Composition and Literature examination of the College Board Scholastic Advanced Placement Program.
  • Completion and transfer to CSU of the credits for a college course that satisfies the CSU General Education requirement in English Composition, provided such a course was completed with a grade of “C” or better.
Course Placement

Students with an EPT score of:

  • 139 or below enroll in Stretch Composition 113A followed by 113B and corresponding mandatory Supplemental Instruction (SI) labs.
  • 140-146 enroll in Stretch Composition 114A followed by 114B.
  • 147 or above enroll in 115.

Entry Level Mathematics (ELM) Placement Examination

The Entry Level Mathematics (ELM) Examination is designed to assess and measure the level of mathematics skills acquired through three years of rigorous college preparatory mathematics coursework (Algebra I and II, and Geometry) of students entering the California State University (CSU). The CSU ELM must be completed by all non-exempt entering undergraduates prior to enrollment in any course, including remedial courses. Students who score 50 or above on the ELM will be placed in college-level mathematics classes.

Exemptions from the ELM are granted only to those who present proof of one of the following:

  • A score of “Exempt” or “Ready for college-level Mathematics courses” on the CSU Early Assessment Program (EAP), taken in grade 11 in conjunction with the CST in Summative High School Mathematics or Algebra II.
  • A score of “Conditionally ready for college-level Mathematics courses” or “Conditional” on the CSU Early Assessment Program (EAP), taken in grade 11 along with the California Standards Test in Summative High School Mathematics or Algebra II, provided successful completion of a CSU-approved 12th grade math course that requires Algebra II as a prerequisite.
  • A score of 550 or above on the mathematics section of the College Board SAT Reasoning Test.
  • A score of 550 or above on a College Board SAT Subject Test in Mathematics (level 1 or level 2).
  • A score of 23 or above on the American College Testing (ACT) Mathematics Test.
  • A score of 3 or above on the College Board Advanced Placement Calculus AB or Calculus BC exam.
  • A score of 3 or above on the College Board Advanced Placement Statistics examination.
  • Completion and transfer to CSU of a college course that satisfies the requirement in Quantitative Reasoning, provided such a course was completed with a grade of “C” or better.
Course Placement

Students with an ELM score of:

  • 32 or below take two (2) developmental mathematics courses at CSUN.
  • Above 34 but below 50 take one (1) developmental mathematics course at CSUN.
  • 50 or higher place into college-level mathematics courses at CSUN.