A. Total Unit Requirements
The minimum number of semester units necessary for a bachelor’s degree — including courses for the major, general education, all university requirements and free electives — is as follows:
- For the Bachelor of Arts degree - (120)
- For the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree - (132)
- For the Bachelor of Science degree - (120)
- For the Bachelor of Music degree - (132)
B. Upper-Division Requirement
A minimum of 40 semester units of upper-division coursework is required for any CSUF bachelor’s degree, with the exception of Nursing. Courses offering upper-division credit are those numbered at the 300- and 400-levels.
All units from upper-division courses are applicable to the upper-division units requirement, including units from courses in the major, the minor and general education.
C. Special Unit Totals
The maximum number of special semester units accepted for a bachelor’s degree is as follows:
- Transferable units from community or junior colleges (70)
- Transferable units from a four-year university or college, or from a combination of two- and four-year institutions for degrees requiring 120 units (90)
- From credit by examination (30)
- From Extension and correspondence courses (24)
- From credit/no credit courses (36)
- From internship courses (6)
- From independent study courses (9)
- From tutorial courses (3)
A minimum of 30 semester units must be earned in courses taken at Cal State Fullerton. Twenty-four of these units must be earned in upper-division courses. At least 12 upper-division semester units in the major must be taken at this institution. Courses taken in Extension (except for Summer Session and Winter Session courses offered as part of the special sessions program) and units earned through credit by examination may not be used to fulfill these requirements.
Grade-Point Average Requirements
Three grade-point averages, each 2.0 or higher, are required for graduation.
- An average based on all units attempted, including those attempted at other institutions.
- An average based on all units attempted at CSUF.
- An average based on all units attempted in the major.
Distribution of Requirements
A. General Education
A minimum of 48-49 semester units are needed to complete CSUF’s general education requirements. See the General Education section of this catalog.
The unit requirement in a major varies substantially from major to major. Refer to the department listings for the specific requirements of any particular major.
C. Graduation Requirement
To comply with the CSU American Institutions Requirement, all students shall be required to take a 3-unit American Government course. Please see your Titan Degree Audit for a list of courses that satisfy this Graduation Requirement.
D. Undergraduate Upper-Division Writing Requirement
The university requires that every person completing a bachelor’s degree under 1980-81 and later catalog requirements, demonstrate writing ability acceptable for graduation per UPS 320.020. To satisfy this requirement, each major requires that students pass a specially designated upper-division course or courses of at least three semester units. These major-specific courses are identified within the student’s Titan Degree Audit.
The University Board on Writing Proficiency must certify the course or courses that each major department designates to fulfill the requirement. Departments and programs may specify either a single course of at least three units that involves intensive instruction in writing, or two or more courses (a total of at least six units) in which students are required to write one or more lengthy papers, or several shorter ones, which involve the organization and expression of complex ideas. In these courses, students will be given careful and timely evaluations of their writing and suggestions for improvement. An assessment of writing competence will be included in determining the final course grade. Students must pass these courses with a grade of C (2.0) or better.
In certain cases, students may petition the University Board on Writing Proficiency for exemption from or modification of the requirement. Transfer students and candidates for a second baccalaureate may be certified as meeting the requirement after they have submitted to the board acceptable evidence of having completed the equivalent to CSUF’s upper-division writing requirement.
A minor is a means by which students can enrich their academic preparation through concentrated study of a discipline related to, or different from, their declared major. Although students can pursue multiple majors, many decide that declaring a major and a minor is a more desirable choice. A minor provides a structured selection of courses to augment or complement the student’s major by broadening a student’s academic experience or serving as preparation for a specific career. A minor can extend the student’s knowledge in two related areas (e.g., English and speech communication, anthropology and foreign languages, sociology and women’s studies) or in two disparate ones (e.g., business administration and computer science, economics and foreign languages, mathematics and psychology). A minor can also enable students to systematically explore fields of knowledge about which they are curious or enthusiastic.
Students may wish to consult with an adviser in their major department for recommendations of suitable minor fields of study.
A minor is not required for the baccalaureate; however, students may elect to complete one or more minors from those available and have that noted on their records. In completing the requirements for a minor, a minimum of 12 units, of which at least six must be upper-division, must be distinct and different from the units used to complete the requirements of the major. Any units above this minimum requirement that can be used to satisfy both the requirements for the minor and for the major may be double counted. General education courses may be used to meet minor requirements.
For a list of currently approved minors, see Degree Programs .
After fulfilling the requirements in general education, and a specific major (and possibly a minor), each student is free to choose the rest of the courses needed to complete the semester units required for graduation. Different majors vary considerably in both the number of units they require in their own and related fields. They also vary considerably in the amount of latitude or choice they permit in selecting courses to satisfy the major requirement.
The general education requirement encourages freedom of choice within the natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities, and basic subjects. Students at the university use their electives to broaden their general education, deepen some aspect of their specialties, pursue work in related fields, and satisfy curiosities and enthusiasms for particular subjects or areas of interest.
Advising on general education and electives is provided by the Academic Advising Center.
G. Multiple Majors and Second Baccalaureate Degrees
Within the units required for the baccalaureate, it is possible for a student to complete the requirements for more than one major within one degree (for example, a B.A.) when the additional major is within the same degree (in this case, another B.A.). At least 24 units, including 12 at the upper-division level, in each Bachelor of Arts major, or 36 units, including 18 at the upper-division level, in each Bachelor of Science major, must be applied exclusively to the respective major and may not be used to meet requirements in other majors. The student shall declare the additional major with the appropriate department no later than the beginning of the student’s final year of study.
The completion of additional majors will be noted at the time of graduation by appropriate entries on the academic record and in the commencement program.
Students seeking two bachelor’s degrees concurrently (i.e., in two different degree programs such as B.S. and B.A.) may qualify for graduation with the approval and recommendation of the faculty upon completion of the following:
- minimum of 60 units in residence (30 units for each degree);
- minimum of 48 upper-division units among the 60 residence units mentioned above;
- a minimum of 12 upper-division units in residence in courses offered by each of the major departments in which the two degrees are being sought; and
- all requirements in major fields of study, general education, scholarship (minimum grade-point average), and all other minimum unit requirements.
Graduation Requirement Check
A candidate for graduation must file an application for a graduation requirements check after completion of 85 earned units and approximately one year prior to the student’s anticipated graduation term. The $115 graduation and diploma fee is not required when the application is filed. However, the student is advised to pay the graduation fee as soon as possible after application. A student can apply for graduation online through the Titan Online student center. Students may now pay their graduation fee online via their student center as well as in person at Student Financial Services.
Candidates for the baccalaureate should refer to the Office of Registration and Records website for application filing dates. A student should have earned at least 85 units and a substantial portion of the major requirements before requesting a graduation check. If the candidate does not complete the requirements in the semester indicated, a request for change of graduation date must be submitted to the Office of Registration and Records. The cost is $10.
Faculty Approval and Recommendation
Under provisions of the Academic Senate, the Office of Registration and Records publishes a list of degree candidates three times a year: in the fall, the spring and the summer. After review and approval by the faculty, and upon verification of the completion of requirements, diplomas are issued with the last day of the respective term as the official date of graduation.
Annual commencement exercises are held at the end of the spring semester for those who completed degree requirements midyear and for those completing degree requirements in the spring semester or Summer Session. The president of the university, with the authority of the Board of Trustees, confers all degrees, subject to the completion of remaining requirements.
Note: Students completing bachelor’s degree requirements who wish to continue their studies at the university for post-baccalaureate or graduate degree objectives must apply for admission declaring their new objectives (e.g., educational credential[s] or master’s degree).