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California Pre-Doctoral Program

If you are exploring whether a doctoral program is the right path for you OR you intend to pursue a doctorate once you graduate from CSUN, you should consider applying to the California Pre-Doctoral Program. The California Pre-Doctoral Program is designed to increase the diversity of the pool from which the California State University draws its faculty. It does so by supporting the doctoral aspirations of CSU students who have experienced economic and educational disadvantages. A special emphasis is placed on increasing the number of CSU students who enter graduate programs at one of the University of California campuses.

Each of the applicants selected will be designated a Sally Casanova Pre-Doctoral Scholar and will work closely with a CSU faculty sponsor to develop an overall plan which prepares the student for enrollment in a doctoral program. The plan should be tailored to the specific goals and career objectives of the student.

Interested students may apply directly to the Chancellor’s Office by the deadline of February 23, 2024. We will post the application link here when it becomes available.  CSUN offers support as you prepare your application, and you can find details and deadlines for those opportunities below.

Program Details

  • Travel Funds for the student to visit U.S. doctoral-granting institutions and/or to attend a professional meeting appropriate to the student's development.
  • Funds for other related activities, such as student membership in professional organizations and subscriptions to journals, graduate school application and test fees, GRE preparation, and the cost of minor research materials.
  • A Summer Research experience at a University of California campus or other major research university, fully funded by the Pre-Doctoral Program, so that the Scholar can participate in doctoral-level research.

Eligibility and Selection Criteria

  • Eligibility is limited to junior, senior and graduate students who are enrolled in a degree-seeking program at any one of the CSU campuses at the time of application. At the time of award, applicants must be matriculated into a degree program and be enrolled in one semester or two quarters during the award year.  For the current application cycle, that means you must be enrolled in a CSUN degree-granting program in Spring 2024 and you must be enrolled at CSUN for at least one semester of the 2024-2025 academic year.
  • Awards are based on competitive review of student applications and given to current upper-division or graduate students who, in the judgment of the review panel, demonstrate academic excellence while experiencing economic or educational disadvantage, as well as committed to a career in teaching and research at the college or university level.
  • Each applicant must have a faculty sponsor who will be available for the duration of the plan specified in the application.

Not Eligible

  • International students
  • Current or previous California Pre-Doctoral Scholars

Students interested in obtaining professional degrees (law, medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, or an MBA degree) are not eligible.

Application Support: Applicant Canvas Course

CSUN has a Canvas course that will guide you through the components of the application, including tips from past applicants and samples.  If you plan to apply to the California Pre-Doctoral Program this year and want access to the Canvas course, please request access here.  

Application Support: Application Writing Workshop

CSUN offers a workshop to support you in developing your Predoc application. Please select Application Workshop to register for one of the upcoming workshops.

Application Support: Application Feedback & Pre-Submission Review

Interested in receiving feedback on your Statement of Qualifications and Collaborative Plan prior to submitting it to the Chancellor’s Office?  Once your Faculty Mentor signs off on the two documents, you can submit your documents for feedback using our Applicant Canvas Course.  Drafts will be accepted on a rolling basis, with a final deadline of Friday, February 2nd.

Additional Information

For more information about the program, please visit the California Pre-Doctoral Program's website.