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Admissions to CSULB

Student Applicants

Students congregate around Prospector Pete Statue

International Student Applicants

The International Admissions component of the Center for International Education assists academically eligible international students to apply for admission to the University, and advises them of CSULB’s financial, immigration and English language requirements. Throughout the students’ attendance, the International Admissions staff is involved in their registration, evaluation of transfer credit, changes of majors, and graduation checks. Students are also counseled regarding their field of study requirements, which vary at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

International Admission Requirements

The CSU must assess the academic preparation of foreign students. For this purpose, "foreign students" include those who hold U.S. temporary visas as students, as exchange visitors, or as members of other nonimmigrant classifications.

The CSU uses separate requirements and application filing dates in the admission of foreign students. Verification of English proficiency (see the section on TOEFL Requirement for undergraduate applicants), financial resources, and academic performance are each important considerations for admission. Academic records from foreign institutions must be on file by April 1st for the first term and, if not in English, must be accompanied by certified English translations.

Priority in admission is given to residents of California. There is little likelihood of nonresident applicants, including international students, being admitted either to impacted majors or to those majors or programs with limited openings.

CSULB encourages eligible international students to apply for undergraduate and graduate level studies. International students are defined as those who hold non-immigrant (student or exchange) visas. Application requests and questions should be directed to International Admissions (cie-admission@csulb.edu), located in the Center for International Education (BH 201).

International students need to complete a different application process than U.S. students. The following documents are required:

  1. International application form;
  2. $55.00 application processing fee;
  3. Affidavit of support from financial sponsor;
  4. Bank statement/letter from financial sponsor;
  5. Proof of acceptable English proficiency (usually met by the Test of English as a Foreign Language);
  6. Official academic documents and certified English translations;
  7. ACT or SAT (required for student athletes and graduates of U.S. high schools);
  8. GMAT (required for graduate business majors only);
  9. Letters of recommendation (graduate level applicants).

Graduate applicants must check with their prospective departments for earlier deadlines.

Once all the documents are submitted to the International Admissions Office, eligibility for admission will be determined based on English proficiency and academic history, as well as other considerations. Graduate applications will be forwarded to the graduate departments for review by the graduate coordinators. Once admitted, international students will receive pre-arrival, arrival, and orientation information, and the appropriate immigration form and instructions on how to legally enter and/or remain in the U.S.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requires that international students be aware of and follow DHS regulations to remain legally in the U.S. for the duration of their academic status. International students on “F” and “J” visas must be enrolled as full time students. Courses taken through the College of Continuing and Professional Education (CCPE) at CSULB or courses taken concurrently at other colleges nearby may only count toward full time status when approved in advance of course registration by the Center for International Education. Questions about DHS policies may be directed to the Center for International Education.

The Examination in English as a Second Language (EESL) is a placement test required of admitted graduate students for whom English is a second language. Failure to take the EESL test will result in a registration hold placed on the student’s record. Students may also be required to enroll in one or more English as a Second Language course(s) based on performance on the test. Please contact International Student Services for more information about EESL requirements and exemptions

TOEFL 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 a minimum of 500 on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) (applicants taking the Computer-Based Test of English as a Foreign Language must present a score of 173 or above and those taking the Internet-based (iBT) test must score 61), unless the applicant:

1. has proof of at least three years attendance at a secondary level educational institution in a country where English was the principal language of instruction.* CSULB interprets “where English was the principal language of instruction” to mean that a school is located in a country where English is the native language (the daily medium of communication of the majority of residents is English), and that the students receive academic instruction in all subjects (except foreign language courses) at all levels of education in English, or

2. completed at least 56 transferable units from accredited U.S. community colleges and/or universities and earned a grade of A, B, or C in English 100 or its equivalent*, or

3. successfully completed CSULB’s American Language Institute’s Intensive English Language Program.*
Undergraduate applicants who are U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents of the U.S. and who are subject to the above TOEFL requirement may submit results from the English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in lieu of TOEFL. A score of 954 on the ELPT is required of such applicants.

EXCEPTION: Applicants applying for Film and Electronic Arts, which requires a 550 TOEFL score, and Journalism, which requires a 600 TOEFL score, will not be waived from the TOEFL requirement.

*For this exemption to remain valid, once having met the exemption, the student must not have left the U.S.A. for more than two years to reside or study in a country where English is not the predominant language of business, education and day-to-day societal functions.

Insurance Requirement

Effective August 1, 1995, as a condition of receiving an I-20 or DS-2019 form, all F-1 and J-1 visa applicants must agree to obtain and maintain health insurance as a condition of registration and continued enrollment in the California State University. Such insurance must be in amounts as specified by the United States Department of State and NAFSA: Association of International Educators. The campus President or designee will determine which insurance policies meet these criteria. Further information may be obtained from the Center for International Education, Brotman Hall 201, (562) 985-4106.

Special Consideration

A very limited number of applicants who do not meet regular admission requirements may be considered by the University through an alternate screening process. As part of this review, admission may be offered based on institutional interests, special talents, or special circumstances. The authority to grant special admission is delegated to the Associate Vice President for Enrollment Services based on the recommendations of the appropriate campus committees.

Admission as a Candidate for a Second Baccalaureate Degree

CSULB accepts applicants for a second B.A./B.S. in science, math, engineering, and the Accelerated Nursing/Entry Level MSN program. Candidates for a second baccalaureate degree should apply using the graduate application.