UNIVERSITY CATALOG: 2017-2018

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 contact:

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

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

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: the 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.

Assessment of Academic Preparation and Placement

The CSU requires that all entering freshmen students be evaluated in terms of their preparation to complete first-year courses in written communication and mathematics/quantitative reasoning. This evaluation will utilize the broadest set of multiple measures including high school grades as well as performance scores on standardized exams such as the ACT or SAT. This evaluation of academic readiness is not a condition for admission to the CSU, but it is an important step for determining the best course placement for entering students.

Successful completion of general education (GE) written communication and mathematics/quantitative reasoning courses in the first year of CSU enrollment establishes a foundation for continuous learning. Unless the requirements have been completed, freshmen shall enroll in GE written communication and mathematics/quantitative reasoning courses appropriate to each student’s major and skill level, as demonstrated by applicable systemwide standards utilized in the review of academic preparation.

Students whose skill assessments indicate academic support will be needed for successful completion of GE in written communication or mathematics/quantitative courses shall enroll in appropriate college-level, baccalaureate credit-bearing courses that strengthen skills development to facilitate achieving the appropriate general education student learning outcomes. Supportive course models may include, among others, co-requisite approaches, supplemental instruction or “stretch” formats that extend a course beyond one academic term. In these approaches, instructional content considered pre-baccalaureate may carry a maximum of one unit and shall be offered concurrently with a college-level, baccalaureate credit-bearing course.

Multiple Measures Assessment for General Education Written Communication

Based on the systemwide assessment standards for GE written communication below, freshmen shall enroll in appropriate GE written communication courses during their first academic year unless the requirement has been fulfilled.

Students who have met the following requirements have fulfilled the GE Written Communication requirement in preparation for advanced courses:

  • A score of 3 or above on either the Language and Composition examination or the Composition and Literature examination of the College Board Scholastic Advanced Placement Program.
  • Completion and transfer to the CSU of the credits for a college course that satisfies the CSU GE requirement in written composition, provided such a course was completed with a grade of “C-” or better.

Students who have met at least one of the following requirements are ready to enroll in a 115 course that meets the GE Written Communication requirement (AAS 115, AFRS 115, CAS 115, CHS 115, ENGL 115 or QS 115):

  • A result of ‘Standard Exceeded: Ready for CSU or participating CCC college-level coursework in English’ earned on the CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP) exam.
  • A score of 550 or higher on the Evidence Based Reading and Writing section of the new SAT Reasoning Test sponsored by the College Board.
  • A score of 500 or higher on the Evidence Based Reading and Writing section of the old SAT Reasoning Test sponsored by the College Board.
  • A score of 22 or above on the ACT English test.
  • Completion of an approved 12th grade, year-long, English course with a grade of “C-” or better and a score of 510-540 on the Evidence Based Reading and Writing section of the new SAT Reasoning Test or a score of 460-490 on the Evidence Based Reading and Writing section of the old SAT Reasoning Test.
  • Completion of an approved 12th grade, year-long, English course with a grade of “C-” or better and a score of 19-21 on the ACT English test.
  • A result of ‘Standard Met: Conditionally Ready for CSU or participating CCC college-level coursework in English’ on the CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP) exam and completion of an approved 12th grade, year-long, English course with a grade of “C-” or better.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school GPA ≥ 3.3 or a high school GPA ≥ 3.0 and completion of an approved 12th grade, year-long, English course (AP, IB, ERWC) or Honors English or more than 5 years of high school English.

Students who have met at least one of the following requirements are ready to enroll in a stretch composition course (114A followed by 114B) that meets the GE Written Communication requirement and includes supported instruction (AAS 114A/B, AFRS 114A/B, CAS 114A/B, CHS 114A/B, ENGL 114A/B or QS 114A/B):

  • Completion of 4+ years of standard college preparatory high school English courses and a score of 510-540 on the Evidence Based Reading and Writing section of the new SAT Reasoning Test or a score of 460-490 on the Evidence Based Reading and Writing section of the old SAT Reasoning Test or a score of 19-21 on the ACT English test.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school GPA ≥ 3.0 and 4 years of standard college preparatory high school English courses.

Students who have met at least one of the following requirements are required to participate in the Early Start Program and are ready to enroll in a stretch composition course (113A followed by 113B and corresponding mandatory supplemental instruction labs) that meets the GE Written Communication requirement and includes supported instruction (AAS 113A/B, AFRS 113A/B, CAS 113A/B, CHS 113A/B, ENGL 113A/B, LING 113A/B or QS 113A/B):

  • A score less than 510 on the Evidence Based Reading Writing section of the new SAT Reasoning Test or a score less than 460 on the old SAT Reasoning Test and achievement of a high school grade point average of ≤ 3.0.
  • A score less than 19 on the ACT English test and the achievement of a high school GPA of ≤ 3.0.

Multiple Measures Assessment for General Education Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning

Based on the systemwide assessment standards for GE mathematics/quantitative reasoning below, freshmen shall enroll in appropriate general education mathematics/quantitative reasoning courses during their first academic year unless the requirement has been fulfilled.

Students who have met at least one of the following requirements have fulfilled the GE Math/Quantitative Reasoning requirement and are permitted to enroll in the next level of math (if required in the major, refer to the Mathematics Placement Test (MPT) for placement information):

  • A score of 3 or above on the College Board Advanced Placement Calculus AB or Calculus BC tests.
  • A score of 3 or above on the College Board Advanced Placement Statistics test.
  • A score of 4 or above on the International Baccalaureate Mathematics Higher Level (HL).
  • A score of 50 or above on the College Board College Level Examination Program (CLEP) Calculus, College Algebra, College Algebra-Trigonometry, Pre-Calculus, or Trigonometry.
  • Completion and transfer to the CSU of the credits for a college course that satisfies the CSU General Education requirement in mathematics/quantitative reasoning, provided such a course was completed with a grade of “C-” or better.

Students who are STEM majors who have met at least one of the following requirements are ready to enroll in a course that meets the GE Math/Quantitative Reasoning requirement (MATH 102, see advisor for placement):

  • A result of ‘Standard Exceeded: Ready for CSU or participating CCC college-level coursework in mathematics’ on the CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP) exam.
  • A score of 570 or above on the mathematics section of the new SAT Reasoning Test.
  • A score of 550 or above on the mathematics section of the old SAT Reasoning Test.
  • A score of 550 or above on the SAT Subject Test in Mathematics (level 1 or level 2).
  • A score of 23 or above on the ACT Mathematics test.
  • Completion of a 12th grade mathematics course beyond algebra 2 with a grade of “C-” or better and a score of 520-560 on the new SAT mathematics test or a score of 490-540 on the old SAT mathematics test.
  • Completion of a 12th grade mathematics course beyond algebra 2 with a grade of “C-” or better and a score of 20-22 on the ACT Mathematics test.
  • A result of ‘Standard Met: Conditionally Ready for CSU or participating CCC college-level coursework in mathematics’ on the CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP) exam and completion of a 12th grade mathematics course with a grade of “C-” or better.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school GPA ≥ 3.7.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school mathematics GPA ≥ 3.5 and 5+ years of mathematics or quantitative reasoning courses.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school mathematics GPA ≥ 3.5 and completion of an approved senior year course.

Students who are non-STEM majors who have met at least one of the following requirements are ready to enroll in a course that meets the GE Math/Quantitative Reasoning requirement (MATH 103, MATH 131, MATH 140 or MATH 210, see advisor for placement):

  • A result of ‘Standard Exceeded: Ready for CSU or participating CCC college-level coursework in mathematics’ on the CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP) exam.
  • A score of 570 or above on the mathematics section of the new SAT Reasoning Test.
  • A score of 550 or above on the mathematics section of the old SAT Reasoning Test.
  • A score of 550 or above on the SAT Subject Test in Mathematics (level 1 or level 2).
  • A score of 23 or above on the ACT Mathematics test.
  • Completion of a 12th grade mathematics course beyond algebra 2 with a grade of “C-” or better and a score of 520-560 on the new SAT mathematics test or a score of 490-540 on the old SAT mathematics test.
  • Completion of a 12th grade mathematics course beyond algebra 2 with a grade of “C-” or better and a score of 20-22 on the ACT Mathematics test.
  • A result of ‘Standard Met: Conditionally Ready for CSU or participating CCC college-level coursework in mathematics’ on the CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP) exam and completion of a 12th grade mathematics course with a grade of “C-” or better.
  • A result of ‘Standard Met: Conditionally Ready for CSU or participating CCC college-level coursework in mathematics on the CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP exam) and 4 years of mathematics or quantitative reasoning courses.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school GPA ≥ 3.7.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school GPA ≥ 3.5 and 4+ years of mathematics or quantitative reasoning courses.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school mathematics GPA ≥ 3.0 and completion of 5+ years of mathematics or quantitative reasoning courses.
  • Achievement of a weighted high school mathematics GPA ≥3.0 and completion of an approved senior year course.

Students who are STEM majors who have met the following requirement are ready to enroll in a course that meets the GE Math/Quantitative Reasoning requirement and includes supported instruction (MATH 102/L and supplemental instruction, see advisor for placement):

  • Achievement of a high school mathematics GPA ≥ 3.3.

Students who are non-STEM majors who have met at least one of the following requirements are ready to enroll in a course that meets the GE Math/Quantitative Reasoning requirement and includes supported instruction (see advisor for placement):

  • Achievement of a high school mathematics GPA ≥ 3.3.
  • Achievement of a high school GPA ≥ 3.0.

Students who have met at least one of the following requirements are required to participate in the Early Start Program and are ready to enroll in a course that meets the GE Math/Quantitative Reasoning requirement and includes supported instruction (see advisor for placement):

  • A score less than 510 on the mathematics section of the new SAT Reasoning test or a score less than 490 on the mathematics section of the old SAT Reasoning test and a high school GPA ≤ 3.2.
  • A score less than 20 on the ACT Mathematics test and a high school GPA ≤ 3.2.