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CSU UC A thru G Matrix

CSU-UC Comparison of Admission Requirements for 2012-13  Freshman Admission


California State University (CSU) University of California (UC)
Calculate GPA using only “a-g” approved courses taken after the 9th grade, including summer courses. All “a-g” courses and grades must be reported.
Fifteen yearlong college preparatory courses from approved “a-g” list are required:

11 UC-required college preparatory

(“a-g”) courses must be completed prior to senior year (including summer



“a” | History/Social Science

Two years of history/social science, including one year of U.S. history OR one semester of U.S. history and one semester of American government, AND …
One year of history/social science from either the “a” or “g” subject area One year of world history, cultures and geography from the “a” subject area
b” |  English Four years of college preparatory English composition/literature (including no more than one year of Advanced ESL/ELD courses)
“c” | Mathematics Three years of mathematics (algebra I and II, geometry); four years recommended*


“d” | Laboratory Science

Two years of laboratory science

At least one year of physical science and one year of biological science, one from the “d” subject area and the other from the “d” or “g” area**

Must include at least two of the three foundational subjects of biology, chemistry, and physics; both courses must be from the “d” subject area; three years recommended

e” | Language Other Than


Two years of language other than English (must be the same language, American Sign Language accepted)*

Three years recommended

“f” | Visual and Performing Arts One yearlong course in visual and performing arts (selected from dance, music, theatre/drama and visual arts)
“g” | College Preparatory Elective One year of an elective chosen from any area on approved “a-g” course list
Note: Numerous Career Technical Education courses are approved for fulfillment of “a-g” subject requirements.
Maximum of eight extra grade points awarded for approved honors, Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate courses and transferable college courses. No more than two yearlong courses taken in 10th grade can earn honors points.


*Coursework completed in 7th or 8th grade can be used to satisfy “c” and “e” requirements.

**It is best to prepare for both the UC and the CSU by completing two laboratory courses from the “ d” subject area.


Information is accurate as of August 2011



California State University (CSU) University of California (UC)
ACT or SAT Reasoning

Test required for CSU applicants to impacted campuses.

Test required for CSU applicants to non-impacted campuses, who have earned an

“a-g” GPA of less than a 3.0.

CSU combines the best critical reading and math scores from multiple sittings of the SAT; may combine the best subscores from multiple ACT tests to calculate the best composite.

The ACT Assessment plus Writing or the SAT Reasoning Test required for UC applicants.

UC uses the highest combined score from a single sitting of the ACT Assessment plus Writing or the SAT Reasoning Test. Some campuses may recommend SAT Subject Tests for specific majors.


A grade of C or better in the second semester of a yearlong algebra course validates a D in the first semester. A grade of C or better in Algebra II vali- dates Algebra I. A grade of C or better in trigonometry or pre-calculus validates the entire high school college preparatory requirement. A grade of C or better in statistics will validate only Algebra I and Algebra II, not geometry.

Language Other Than English


A grade of C or better in a higher-level course validates a lower-level course. A higher-level LOTE course can validate the appropriate number of years based on the level. A college course can validate a high school LOTE course. The level of validation depends on the college course prerequisite and description.


A grade of C or better in the second semester of chemistry WILL validate a D

in the first semester.

A grade of C or better in the second semester of chemistry WILL NOT validate a D in the first semester.
Required “a-g” courses must be completed with a grade of C or better. Courses in which grades of D are earned must be repeated, EXCEPT in the areas of math and language other than English, where grades of D can be validated by successful completion of higher-level coursework.

Required “a-g” courses may be satisfied with appropriate test scores on SAT Subject Tests, Advanced Placement examinations and designated

International Baccalaureate exams. A list of acceptable tests and scores is available on UC and CSU websites.

The highest grade will be used in the GPA calculation.

A course completed with a D or F grade

can be repeated only once and should be repeated especially if taken in 10th

or 11th grade, with the exception of VPA courses.


Information is accurate as of August 2011

Bruce Mims (64 Posts)

Bruce Mims is an educator, researcher, fitness & distance running nut, father of fraternal twins who's passionate about educational technology & equity