Getting In

What are the eligibility criteria?

First-time freshman

You need to be a high school graduate and complete the following A through G sequence of college preparatory courses with a grade of "C" or better in order to be eligible for Cal State Northridge admission as a first-time freshman:

A. History and social science (one year U.S. history) 2 years
B. English 4 years
C. Math (algebra, geometry, intermediate algebra) 3 years
D. Laboratory science (one physical and one biological) 2 years
E. Foreign language (two years of the same language) 2 years
F. Visual and performing arts (art, dance, drama or theater) 1 year
G. Elective (various) 1 year

All first-time freshmen are required to submit SAT or ACT scores by the deadline.

You also need to earn a minimum eligibility index, which is a combination of your grade point average (GPA) and SAT or ACT scores.

To determine your GPA, use only the college preparatory courses listed above, and include only those taken after ninth grade. You may add bonus points for honors-level courses.

If you are using your SAT score, use the following formula to calculate your eligibility index: (GPA x 800) + SAT score (critical reading and math only) = eligibility index.

If you are using your ACT score, use the following formula to calculate your eligibility index: (GPA x 200) + (10 x ACT composite score) = eligibility index.

If you are a resident of Cal State Northridge's local guarantee admission area, you need a minimum eligibility index of 2,900 if you are using the SAT score, or a minimum eligibility index of 694 using the ACT score.

If you are living outside the local guarantee admission area, you must meet a higher eligibility index and will be given admission consideration based on the strength of your eligibility index score and the total enrollment target of the university. Criteria for admission consideration may change depending upon the academic characteristics of the applicant pool, such as GPA and standardized test scores. Visit Freshman Impaction for more information.

If you did not graduate from a California high school or you are not a California resident, you need to complete the same pattern of courses but need a slightly higher eligibility index.

Transfer

Cal State Northridge welcomes applications from upper-division transfer students. To be eligible for admission, you must have completed at least 60 transferable semester units (90 quarter units), with a grade point average of at least 2.0. You must also be in good standing at the last college or university attended. To be eligible for admission to fall semester, you must complete the above requirements by the end of the previous spring term.

Your coursework must include the following general education courses with a grade of "C" or better in each: speech communication, critical thinking, writing and mathematics. Engineering and computer science applicants do not need to complete the critical thinking requirement.

Graduate

To be considered for admission to Cal State Northridge as a graduate student, you must have one of the following:

  • An acceptable baccalaureate degree with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5
  • An acceptable baccalaureate degree with a minimum grade point average of 2.5 for the last 60 semester units (90 quarter units) attempted from all post-secondary institutions attended
  • An acceptable post-baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution

The department you apply to will make a final decision about your admission. The department may ask that you file a separate application and submit supplemental material.

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