California State University-Sacramento: Academics, Admissions & Tuition

About California State University - Sacramento

California State University (CSU) - Sacramento was founded as the Sacramento State College in 1947. The 300-acre campus is located near the American River Parkway and Folsom Lake. The school has a significant impact on the city of Sacramento by contributing almost $1 billion yearly. Known to be a 'green' campus, the school is home to roughly 3,000 trees as well as the California Smart Grid Center. In 2013, U.S. News & World Report (USNWR) ranked the university number 20 in its 'Top Public Schools - Regional Universities (West)' category.


By offering 58 undergraduate, 41 master's and two doctoral degree programs, the university allows its roughly 28,500 students to find a degree program that suits their needs and interests. There are also six post-baccalaureate certificate programs. The eight academic colleges include varied departments such as interior design, Chinese, construction management, film, statistics and aerospace studies. In 2011, 20% of Cal State's classes enrolled fewer than 20 students, according to USNWR. The publication also noted in 2011 that the most popular major categories at the school were business, management and marketing; homeland security, law enforcement and firefighting; communication and journalism; and parks, recreation, leisure and fitness studies. Students are encouraged to join at least one of the university's 276 organizations to enhance their collegiate experiences.


Prospective students can submit their admissions application for fall 2014 between October 1 and November 30. Cal State's admissions office reviews an applicant's high school grades, GPA and standardized test scores. Advanced placement, credit for life experience and dual credit are accepted. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reported that 18,617 individuals applied for admission in 2011. However, 67% were admitted, and only 23% enrolled. Full-time students accounted for 81% of enrollment in 2012, while 19% were enrolled part-time, per the NCES. The student population in fall 2012 was 25,624 undergraduates and 2,915 graduates.

Tuition & Financial Aid

To apply for any type of financial aid, students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. First-time undergraduate students who were California residents paid $6,620 for the 2012-2013 school year, according to the NCES. Non-residents were charged $18,278. On-campus room and board was calculated to be $11,724 for the same year. Books and supplies were estimated at $1,754, as noted by the NCES. Tuition payment plans are available, as well as scholarships and work study opportunities.

School Type 4-year, public*
Degrees Offered Bachelor's, master's, doctorates, certificates**
Religious Affiliation None
Academic Calendar Semester****
School Setting Large city*
Student Body 25,624 undergraduates and 2,915 graduates in 2012*
Student Housing 6 residence halls available, 3 of which are for freshmen**
Schools and Programs 7 colleges; about 100 degree programs**
Student-Faculty Ratio 29 to 1*
Most Popular Fields of Study by Degree Level (Number of Recipients) In 2011:
Bachelor's: Business Administration and Management (973)
Master's: Education (167)
Doctorate: Educational Leadership and Administration (2)*
Undergraduate Graduation Rates 10% in four years
41% in six years*
Admission Rate 67% in 2011*
Entering Class Size 1,791 in 2012***
First-Year Retention Rates 82% for full-time and 66% for part-time students*
Average SAT and ACT Scores of Admitted Students (2011) SAT: 410-520 (critical reading), 420-540 (math); ACT composite 17-23*
Application Due Date October 1-November 30 for fall 2014 admissions**
Decision Notification Date March 1 for fall admissions**
Tuition (2012-2013) $6,620 in-state and $18,278 out-of-state*
Financial Aid Sources Available (Percent of First-Year Students Receiving It) In 2011-2012:
Federal grants (54%), state and local grants/scholarships (50%), institutional grants/scholarships (46%), federal loans (39%)*
Percent of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Aid 75% in 2011-2012*

Sources: *NCES College Navigator, **California State University - Sacramento, ***IPEDS Data Center, ****U.S. News & World Report.

School Contact Information

  • Address: Admissions & Outreach, California State University- Sacramento, 6000 J Street, Sacramento, CA 95819
  • Phone: (916) 278-7766
  • Website:

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