Spring 2021 Advising Checklist
New F-1 Undergraduate International Students
Download the spring 2021 F-1 International Advising Checklist (.pdf)
Welcome to California State University, Northridge (CSUN)! This advising checklist will guide you through the necessary steps toward a successful first semester at CSUN. Advising and registration for Spring 2021 can begin as early as November 1, 2020. Be sure to read this checklist for important details about how to successfully transition to CSUN.
Note: All activities that require attendance have been switched to a virtual format through the duration of the Covid-19 pandemic.
ACTIVATE YOUR CSUN ACCOUNTS
Set up your CSUN portal account and gmail as explained in the “Activate Your CSUN Account” email from Admissions and Records, this was sent to the email address you provided on your admission application. For help accessing your username and/or password visit the Information Technology Help Center. Remember to check your CSUN email account regularly!
COMPLETE THE TITLE IX- NOT ANYMORE TRAINING
To promote a culture of respect, raise awareness, and prevent sexual misconduct, all students must complete an online, video-based educational training program. This training must be complete before enrollment into classes by an advisor. The Not Anymore Training link can be found in your CSUN portal, under "MyChecklist". For assistance accessing the link view the Title IX- Not Anymore Training Tutorial.
COMPLETE THE ONLINE PRE-ENROLLMENT WORKSHOP
The Online Pre-Enrollment Workshop will serve as academic advisement for new F-1 international students. Meeting with an academic advisor in-person is NOT mandatory for the first semester. However, if students wish to meet with an International Academic Advisor after completing the workshop, they can email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an appointment.
COMPLETE THE RESPONSE QUESTIONNAIRE
The Response Questionnaire informs the international academic advisor of your intention to attend CSUN and lets them know your schedule preferences/restrictions, which they use as a guide when enrolling you into courses. This practice ensures that students have their most preferred schedule, while still being enrolled into degree applicable classes and having at least 12 units to meet their visa requirements. Completion of the Response Questionnaire is required for course enrollment.*
*WITHDRAWAL NOTICE: It is the sole responsibility of the student to notify International Admissions and the International Academic Advisor of their intent to withdraw from classes. Students should declare their intent to withdraw as early as possible, but no later than the Friday of week 3. Failure to follow formal withdrawal procedures may result in an obligation to pay fees, the assignment of failing grades on your academic record, and the need to reapply for admission to CSUN.
TAKE YOUR PLACEMENT EXAMS (If Required)
- Math: All freshman students are recommended to take the Math Selection Assessment (MSA) to determine their placement in math for the first semester. Some transfer students may also be recommended to take the MSA based on their majors degree requirements. If you are recommended to take the MSA, information will be sent to your CSUN email after you have been enrolled in classes.
- English/Writing: Placement into a freshman composition (writing) course will depend on transferable college courses or other external placement exams. If you have external writing placement exams please submit them to the office of International Admissions. There are currently no writing placement exams offered by CSUN. The TOFEL/IELTS exam does not exempt international students from needing to take freshman composition.
- Chemistry: Students in Engineering, Computer Science, Math, Health Sciences, or other science majors may need to take the Interim Chemistry Placement Test (CPT) to enroll in CHEM 101/L. If you are interested in taking this exam you must register by yourself online and it should be taken before the semester begins.
- Test Exemptions: Some students may be exempt from the placement exams based on their transfer coursework or other external placement exams. Students who do not take the placement exams (or do not have exemptions) may be placed into lower level prerequisite courses, which can add semesters to their graduation plan. Consult with an advisor if you are unsure if you are exempt from one or more of the placement exams.
SUBMIT FINAL TRANSCRIPTS
Send your final official transcripts to CSUNs office of International Admissions as soon as your semester is complete. Transcripts can be mailed, sent electronically, or hand-delivered to CSUN. Freshmen and lower division transfer students must submit final high school transcripts and all students must submit final transcripts from any colleges attended. The document deadline for Spring 2021 is November 15, 2020.
REVIEW YOUR DEGREE PLANNING TOOLS
Review and become familiar with the tools that outline your degree requirements at CSUN.
- The University Catalog list all major/degree requirements with course descriptions and explains vital information about university policies and procedures.
- The Degree Progress Report (DPR)/Planner is an audit, which shows all of your completed course work and all of your remaining degree requirements at CSUN. The DPR is very useful in understanding how your specific course work has been applied towards your degree at CSUN.
- The Degree Road Map outlines the recommended course sequence to complete each degree in two years for transfer students and four years for freshmen students. The Degree Road Map is a guideline and may not fit each student the same.
REGISTER AND ATTEND INTERNATIONAL NEW STUDENT ORIENTATION
The New Student Orientation is mandatory. During this half-day virtual event, we will welcome you to the university, provide additional information to help you transition into CSUN, and provide an opportunity for you to meet fellow international students. International New Student Orientation is on January 21, 2021; you are not required to attend any other orientation days.
PAY YOUR TUITION AND FEES
Tuition for first semester international students is due after enrollment in classes, but no later than January 29, 2021. You can pay tuition online through your portal, by wire transfer, or in person at Cash Services. For more information, visit Student Finance.
UNDERSTAND YOUR HOLDS
All international students will have an "International Advisement Required" hold on their account. The advisement hold requires you to consult with an academic advisor before making changes to your schedule. You are NOT required to get this hold removed.
All international students will have a "Foreign" hold on their account. The International & Exchange Student Center (IESC) places the “foreign” hold as part of your immigration requirements. For more information, visit CSUN Health Insurance Requirement.
COMPLETE THE CSU IMMUNIZATION REQUIREMENTS
All students must submit proof of immunization for the following:
- Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR)
- Hepatitis B (if under 18 years of age)
Additionally, the following vaccines are recommended for Spring 2021:
- Varicella (Chickenpox)
- Tetanus-Diphtheria-Perusisis (Tdap)
- Menigococcal Disease
- Tuberculosis (TB)
Proof of immunization can be submitted through the myHealth patient portal. For a step by step guide on how to submit proof of immunization, assistance with submitting proof of immunization, or to obtain any screenings visit the Klotz Student Health Center. Proof of immunization is required before you begin your first semester.
UPPER DIVISION WRITING PROFICIENCY EXAM (UDWPE)
Note: The UDWPE is temporarily Suspended due to Coivd-19
All students are required to complete the Upper Division Writing Proficiency Exam (UDWPE) to graduate. You can attempt the UDWPE as early as the semester in which you have 54 units, but no later than the semester in which 75 units will be complete. If you are transferring to CSUN with 60 or more units, then you are should take the UDWPE within your first semester. Students who have not attempted the UDWPE by the completion of 75 units will have a hold placed on their class registration for the following semester. Neither the TOFEL nor the IELTS exam exempt students from the UDWPE.
ENJOY YOUR FIRST DAY OF CLASS!
- Weekday classes begin Monday, January 25, 2021.
- Saturday-only and Friday-Saturday classes begin Saturday, January 23, 2021.
- Sunday only classes begin Sunday, January 24, 2021.
For a complete list of 2020-2021, important dates, including holidays, visit the Academic Calendar.
How do I enroll in classes for the first semester?
An advisor will enroll new F-1 international students into courses for their first semester, once Pre-Enrollment Steps #1-3 are complete. Once enrolled students will have the opportunity to review the schedule and request changes. To begin this process please click the drop down box labeled “1st Semester Academic Advisement Instructions”.
What happens if I complete the Pre-Enrollment Steps late?
Students who complete the Pre-Enrollment Steps late may be enrolled into courses that do not meet during their ideal schedule preference and/or may risk important major classes closing. Late is considered July/August for fall and December January for spring. Students who wait until after the semester begins to let us know they plan to attend may have to run for permission numbers to be enrolled into classes.
Am I required to make an academic advisement appointment for the first semester?
Due to Covid-19 all advisement has been switched to a virtual format. It is recommended, but NOT required that students make a virtual advisement before the start of the semester. Completing the mandatory Online Pre-Enrollment Workshop will serve as advisement and address the most important academic information you should know. However, students should also attend an advisement workshop receive advisement. Dates for advisement workshops will be sent once all enrollment steps are complete.
Can I choose my own classes?
Students are encouraged to review their Degree Progress Report (DPR) and the CSUN catalog to help them understand their degree requirements. Students who would like to select specific classes are welcome to discuss their course preferences with an academic advisor, who will review them for degree applicability, student eligibility, and course availability. Students may not be eligible for some major courses if they have prerequisite transfer work in progress, require course substitutions, or need to take any placement exams. Additionally, all students should plan to incorporate general education courses into their schedule, including transfer students who must take 9 units of upper division general education at CSUN.
Do I need a hybrid class to study in the U.S.?
In July 2020, ICE rescinded its mandate that international students must have a hybrid course to remain in the U.S.. Therefore students already in the U.S., who have not returned to their home country, are not required to enroll into a hybrid at this time. However, mandates for students who are currently outside the U.S. and need to reenter or new students applying to enter the U.S. for the first time are not clear. For detailed answers regarding requirements to enter the U.S., please see important Information for International Students during Covid -19 or consult directly with a foreign advisor in the International and Exchange Student Center (IESC). Once you are sure of your immigration requirements you can discuss with your academic advisor class your options. Please be aware that in an effort to protect the safety of all students, faculty, and staff, hybrid/on campus courses have been very limited, therefore all request cannot be accommodated.
*All information above is subject to change at any time as new information becomes available
How are fully online classes conducted/How do I attend a fully online class?
CSUN currently offers 3 main types of online courses:
- FOS- Fully Online Synchronous, classes meet virtually two or more times per week at the day/time listed on your schedule. You are expected to virtually attend these class sessions and participate as you would in a traditional class setting.
- FOI- Fully Online Intermittent, classes meet virtually once per week at the day/time listed on your portal. You are expected to virtually attend these class sessions and participate as you would in a traditional class setting. However assignments for the rest of the week can be worked on independently as long as all work is submitted by assigned due dates.
- FOA- Fully Online Asynchronous, classes are listed as Online TBA and will not have any specific meeting days/time. You will be able to work primarily independently as long as assignments/quizzes are completed on time. You will be able to attend office hours for support. Additionally some instructors may offer optional zoom meetings at a designated time, but these will not be mandatory. If you are in a fully FOA class and are told you must attend at a specific time, notify your advisor.
Information on Zoom (video call) links, assignments, and quizzes will be sent out by the instructor. Be sure to regularly check both your CSUN gmail and Canvas account.
*All information above is subject to change at any time as new information becomes available
When will my tuition be due once I am enrolled?
Tuition is due no later than the Friday of the first week of classes. You may see an earlier fee due date on your portal, however international students are given extra time to pay during their first semester. For tuition information, please visit Student Finance. If you need a print out of your personal tuition fees please call student finances at 818-677-8000 (choose option #2) or email Student Finance.
If I drop a class will I receive a refund?
Students are entitled to a refund only if there is a decrease in the number of units in which they are enrolled. Refunds are prorated after the start of the semester up until week 3. More information on refunds can be found on the Student Refund webpage.
I have decided to withdraw or defer my admission to a future semester. What do I do?
Students who decide to completely withdraw or defer their admission after enrollment should notify International Admissions and our International Academic Advisement Center as soon as possible, so that we can drop you from classes and so that enrollment fees can be removed from your account.
I have an International Advisement Required hold on my portal. What do I do?
The advisement hold for new international students will stay on for the first semester only. You DO NOT need to get this hold removed. This process is followed so that new international students consult with an academic advisor before adjusting their schedule; this guarantees that students maintain proper enrollment status. The International Advisement hold will be removed when it is time for students to register for the 2nd semester.
I have a Title 9 hold on my portal. What do I do?
To maintain a safe environment, CSUN staff and students are required to complete "Not Anymore" an online, video- based, violence prevention program. Students can complete this course, by clicking the "Not Anymore" link under incomplete task in their checklist. Once you complete the training, your hold should be lifted within 24 hours.
I have a Foreign hold on my portal. What do I do?
The International & Exchange Student Center (IESC) places the Foreign or “F” hold. The foreign hold is placed for proof of health insurance. Insurance is not included in your tuition. For more information on how to remove the foreign hold, please visit the IESC website.
I have an Immunization hold on my portal. What do I do?
The Klotz Student Health Center places the Immunization hold. The immunization hold is placed for proof of immunization for Rubella/Rubeola and/or Hepatitis B. Proof of immunization can be submitted through the myHealth patient portal. For a step by step guide on how to submit proof of immunization, assistance with submitting proof of immunization, or to obtain any screenings visit the Klotz Student Health Center. If proof is not received by the Health Center deadline a hold may be placed on your record, preventing enrollment in the following semesters classes.
Am I required to take a math placement exam?
All freshman are required to complete the Math Selection Assessment (MSA). The MSA determines placement into pre-college math up to Calculus I. Students who do not take the MSA or are not exempt via transfer work or an external exams (AP, IB, GCE A-levels, etc.) may be placed into the lowest level math course. Some transfer students may be recommended (but not required) to take the MSA if they need a more advanced math course for their major, than what they transferred in with. Students will be notified by an academic advisor if they are required or recommended to take the MSA, which will be offered during the two weeks before school begins.
Am I required to take a writing/English placement exam?
CSUN currently does not offer a writing/English placement test. Freshman students are encouraged to take the SAT or ACT to determine placement into freshman writing. Transfer students should transfer in with a freshman writing course. Students who do not transfer in with a writing course or are not exempt via an external exam (AP, IB, GCE, A-levels, etc.) will be placed into the two semester writing sequence. Please note the TOFEL and/or IELTS exam is not a writing placement test.
What is the upper division writing exam and when am I required to take it?
The UDWPE is an exam that all students must attempt by the semester in which they will complete 75 units. For transfer students with 60 or more units, this typically means the first semester. Students who do not attempt the exam in time will have a “WPE” hold placed on their account. Neither the TOFEL, IELTS, nor any other placement exam score can exempt you from the UDWPE. To register and view test dates please visit the Writing Proficiency Exam webpage.
*Due to Covid-19 the Testing Center is currently closed and the UDWPE requirement temporarily suspended. Students will be notified once UDWPE is available again.
How do I obtain my I-20?
The office of International Admissions distributes the initial I-20, once you transfer your sevis records. For questions regarding your initial I-20 please contact International Admissions.
Who do I contact regarding immigration issues (visa concerns, work request, concurrent enrollment, etc.)
The International and Exchange Student Center (IESC) is responsible for enforcing immigration requirements. Please make sure to complete the mandatory immigration requirements at IESC 6 steps for Immigration.
My sponsor/embassy/cultural mission requires that I submit a study plan before paying my tuition. How can I obtain a study plan?
You should obtain a Study Plan form (if required) from your sponsor and fill it out to the best of your ability, you can use the Degree Road Maps as a guide to help you plan your courses for graduation. You can then request a letter from Admissions & Records to confirm the accuracy of your plan and add any additional information you may need. To request this letter please fill out the Letter Request Form and submit it (with your study plan if applicable) to International Admissions in Bayramian Hall (BH 160) or email it to email@example.com. Once submitted, the Letter Request process takes approximately 10 business days to complete.
I cannot access myNorthridge Portal or CSUN Gmail Account. What do I do?
If you have any technology issues related to your portal or email you can chat with CSUN’s Helpdesk, or you can call 818-677-1400. Students can also visit the CSUN Information Technology website for further assistance.
I have been enrolled in classes, but do not see my instructors course on Canvas. What do I do?
Canvas must be activate/published by your instructor. Many instructors do not activate their Canvas accounts until the first day of class. If by the first day of class you still do not see your course on Canvas please email your instructor. Instructor emails can be found by searching their name in the CSUN directory. For classes added after the semester has begun you will also need to request that the instructor add you to their canvas page.
I requested to drop a class, however the class still shows in Canvas. What do I do?
Remember that Canvas is not your official schedule. Your official schedule can be found in your portal on the "academics" tab. Canvas is controlled by the instructor. If you drop a class it may still show on your Canvas account unless the instructor manually removes you. As long as you have confirmed with your academic advisor that the class(es) have been dropped and are no longer listed in your portal, you can disregard the old course(s) on canvas.
I am having issues accessing Zoom from my country what should I do?
Some students able to use a VPN to access zoom in their home country. If this does not work you can email the Information Technology office to see if they can provide support/recommendations or you can consult with your academic advisor about being enrolled into Fully Online Asynchronous (FOA) courses where you will generally not be required to attend a zoom session.
International students will be able to enroll themselves for the second semester, however before enrolling students need to meet with an academic advisor.
Note: All advisement will be offered in a virtual format.
Freshman Students (0-29 units)
First- time freshmen will schedule their 2nd semester advisement appointment with their International Academic Advisor in the Matador Advising Hub. Students will receive a notification to their CSUN email (ending in @my.csun.edu) with instructions to complete the following workshops through Canvas:
- CSUN Policies Every Matador Should Know
- Understanding your Degree Progress Report
At the end of these workshops you will be asked to complete an International Survey. Make sure to submit the survey. Once your survey is received you will receive an email invitation to schedule your appointment using our online system. These emails will be sent out twice per week. Please be sure to check your junk/spam/clutter/folder for this email if you do not see it in your inbox.
To access the International Academic Advisement workshop from here follow these steps:
- Visit the International Academic Advisement Workshop in canvas.
- Log in using your CSUN user name and password.
- Click "enroll in Course" then "Go to your Dashboard" to select the International Academic Advisement Canvas page.
Transfer Students (30-90+ units)
First-time transfers will be asked to attend a virtual Pre-Second Semester Success (PresSSS) workshop during weeks 5-7, which will help prepare them to meet with their major department advisor. Additionally transfer students will receive a notification titled "Spring 2021 2nd Semester Advising and Registration Instructions" which will contain tips for second semester registration and the contact information for each major department advising office. Transfer students are encouraged to meet virtually with their major department advisor as soon as possible starting week 5 and after.
To access the full list of major departments please see below.
Colleges & Advising Centers
Nordhoff Hall (NH) 135
Refer to grid on website.
- Communication Studies
Bookstein Hall (BB) 2113
- Information Systems
- Business Administration (with options in
- Business Law,
- Global Supply Chain Management,
- Real Estate, or
- Systems and Operations Management)
Education (ED) 1107
Jacaranda (JD) 1501
- Civil Engineering
- Computer Engineering
- Computer Science
- Construction Management
- Electrical Engineering
- Engineering Management
- Manufacturing Systems Engineering
- Mechanical Engineering
Sequoia Hall (SQ) 111
- Child Development
- Communicative Disorders
- Family & Consumer Sciences
- Health Administration
- Health Sciences
- Public Health
- Recreation & Tourism Management
- Recreation Therapy
Jerome Richfield (JR) 240
- Asian-American Studies
- Central American Studies
- Chicano/a Studies
- Gender & Women Studies
- Liberal Studies
- Modern Jewish Studies
- Religious Studies
Eucalyptus Hall (EH) 2126
Sierra Hall (SH) 204
- Africana Studies
- Political Science
- Urban Studies & Planning