California State University-San Bernardino: Academics, Admissions & Tuition

Learn about California State University, San Bernardino in San Bernardino, California. Read about its admission info, financial aid and degree programs to make an informed education decision.

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About California State University, San Bernardino

California State University, San Bernardino is a 4-year, public university located nearly 65 miles east of Los Angeles. The San Bernardino campus is one of 23 California State University campuses located throughout the state. In 1967, the first graduating class of 59 students received their degrees. Today, as of fall 2011, the campus serves over 17,000 students. U.S. News and World Report ranked California State University, San Bernardino 17 in its 2013 'Top Public Schools-Regional Universities, West' category.


California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB) houses five traditional colleges, as well as a college of extended learning. The school offers almost 50 bachelor's degree programs, more than 25 master's degree programs, and one doctoral degree program. These offerings do not include the multiple concentrations and minors available to students. The university also offers nearly 40 undergraduate certificate programs, 13 postbaccalaureate certificate programs, and 24 teaching credential programs. Online courses are also available to students, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 28 to 1.

Drawing from 2010-2011 degree completion data, the most popular undergraduate degree programs include business administration and management, psychology, and liberal studies. The most popular master's degree program was education, and there were six education leadership and administration doctoral degrees awarded.

The John M. Pfau Library, named after the founding university president, serves the research needs of faculty and students. The library currently holds over 750,000 printed and 10,000 electronic books. The library also provides access to about 21,000 online journals and has about 100 searchable databases. It also participates in Interlibrary Loan, so if there is a text or document the library does not have, it can attempt to locate the volume within another participating library's collection and and make it available to students and faculty members.

CSUSB also is also home to the Robert and Frances Fullerton Museum of Art (RAFFMA), which hosts student and faculty art exhibitions and community events. RAFFMA also maintains and displays a collection of ancient Egyptian artifacts, ancient Mediterranean ceramics, Asian ceramics, and African art, as well as a contemporary artwork collection, including a piece by Andy Warhol.


Prospective freshmen can only apply for admission to the university for the fall quarter, and applications are accepted October 1 through November 30, a year prior to desired admission into the university. The application process is straightforward. Apply at the CSU Mentor website, pay the non-refundable fee of $55 - fee waivers are available - then send other application materials such as high school transcripts, and SAT or ACT scores directly to the university. The university will notify an applicant that it has received the application within one week. Students can monitor the application process directly through the university's website.

Eligibility is slightly different for local, non-local, and out-of-state residents, with less rigorous qualifications required of students who graduated from local high schools. All prospective applicants are expected to finish all college preparatory coursework with a 'C' grade or better. There is an eligibility index score based on GPA and SAT or ACT scores. CSUSB is considered an impacted school, which means the university receives more applications than can be granted admission. Priority is given to high school freshmen who graduated within the local area. The university does give credit for College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and Advanced Placement (AP) exam scores. For fall 2010, the university received 9,958 applications, it accepted 2,325 students, and 1,968 students enrolled for classes on a full-time basis.

Tuition & Financial Aid

For the 2012-2013 school year, full-time resident students paid $7,044 in tuition and mandatory fees. Books and supplies were estimated to cost an additional $1,572. Room and board, transportation, and miscellaneous personal expenses varied depending on where a student chose to live. During the same year, nonresidents paid $248 per unit in extra tuition costs, bringing the total yearly cost of tuition and fees for a full-time student to about $7,412.

CSUSB offers a wide variety of merit and need-based scholarships to students meeting certain criteria. The school offers scholarships for students demonstrating leadership abilities, exceptional talent, and community service participation. For the 2010-2011 school year, the university awarded over $4.5 million worth of scholarships to full-time, beginning undergraduate students.

School Type 4-year, public*
Degrees Offered Undergraduate certificates, bachelor's, master's, doctorates, postbaccalaureate certificates, teaching credentials**
Religious Affiliation None*
Academic Calendar Quarters**
School Setting Midsized city*
Student Body 14,884 undergraduates and 2,366 graduate students in fall 2011*
Student Housing Residence halls and apartments available; the school also offers three living learning communities, as well as a community solely for women and a community designed for students over 25**
Schools and Programs Five colleges; over 70 undergraduate and graduate degree options
Student-Faculty Ratio 28 to 1*
Most Popular Fields of Study by Degree Level (Number of Recipients) 2010-2011:
Bachelor's: Business Administration and Management (643)
Master's: Education (166)
Doctorate: Education Leadership and Administration (6)*
Undergraduate Graduation Rates 13% in four years
45% in six years
52% in eight years*
Admission Rate 19% in fall 2010*
Entering Class Size 1,968 full-time students in fall 2010***
First-Year Retention Rates 89% (full-time students)
62% (part-time students)*
Average SAT and ACT Score of Admitted Students Middle 50 percent in 2010:
SAT: Critical Reading: 400-500, Math: 410-510
ACT: Composite: 16-21, English: 14-20, Math: 17-22*
Application Due Date November 30 for fall admission the following year**
Decision Notification Date After the application period has ended**
Tuition $7,044 per year for residents and $7,412 per year for nonresidents (full-time cost for 2012-2013, including fees)**
Financial Aid Sources Available (Percent of Students Receiving it) 2010-2011: Federal grants (63%), state and local grants (51%), institutional scholarship (59%), federal student loans (40%)*
Percent of Students Receiving Some Form of Aid 79% in 2010-2011*

Sources: *National Center for Education Statistics, **California State University, San Bernardino, ***IPEDS Data Center.

School Contact Information

  • Address: California State University, San Bernardino, Admissions & Student Recruitment, 5500 University Parkway, San Bernardino, CA 92407
  • Phone: (909) 537-5188
  • Website:

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