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An international first-time freshman applicant is a student who wishes to study at our university on an F-1 (student) visa, who is applying to one of our bachelor's degree programs and who has not yet completed any post-secondary coursework at a college or university.


  • SPRING 2018   August 1, 2017 - November 15, 2017
  • FALL 2018   October 1, 2017 - May 1, 2018

To apply, submit the following:

No application fee for the spring or the fall terms!

 1. University Application:

Spring 2018: No application fee! Use the paper application – Application fee automatically waived. Please return completed form via email to:

Fall  2018: No application fee!  You can use ONE of the following methods to apply:  

Start Online application at Email when you get to the payment section and we will send you the application fee waiver code to finish the application. Application Guide for online application
 - Or - Use the paper application – Application fee automatically waived.

2.  All official post-secondary school records including certificates, examination grades, degrees or diplomas in the original language of issue through the postal mail in a school-sealed envelope

3. Official English translations of all academic records including certificates, degrees or diplomas

4. Affidavit of Financial Support including bank statements or scholarship letter

5. Official TOEFL or IELTS score report - once you apply, you will be given online access to a student portal where you can check if you are required to submit a test score. If you do not have a passing test score, conditional admission is available.

6. Copy of your Passport

To expedite processing, upload your documents

Send your unofficial transcripts and copies of documents now for an early admission decision.

IMPORTANT NOTICE ABOUT I-20: Please be advised that you must send your official transcripts  through postal mail and have your test scores sent directly to CSUSM from testing agencies  before we can issue the I-20 for the student visa.  

Admission Requirements

  • Are or will be a high school/secondary school graduate or equivalent
  • Equivalent of a "B" (3.0) grade point average
  • SAT or ACT recommended but not required
  • Satisfy English Language Proficiency Admission Requirement for admission purposes with ONE of the following:
    • TOEFL score of 61 iBT with writing score no lower than 19 and no section score below 14
    • IELTS overall band score of 5.5, writing score no lower than 5.5 and no section score below 5.0
    • Attended a high school where English was the principal language of instruction for 3 years (confirm with our International Admissions Office to see if your school is eligible)
      Conditional admission is available through our language program if you do not have a passing IELTS or TOEFL score.  The minimum GPA required for conditional admission is 2.7

Test credit accepted: Advanced Placement (AP), College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) (see International Admissions office for details and other test credit accepted)

*Appeal process for special consideration due to extenuating circumstances/demonstrable hardship may be considered, submit appeal to:

Contact Information:
California State University San Marcos - Office of International Admissions
Global Programs & Services
333 S. Twin Oaks Valley Road, San Marcos, CA 92096-0001 USA
P: (760) 750-4844  F: (760) 750-3138