Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find out about 4-year schools?

There are probably as many ways to find out about 4-year schools as there are schools. Cypress College’s Transfer Center houses a collection of resources. Local libraries often carry college resources as well. Websites such as our Transfer Center can provide a wealth of general information on transfer. For anyone interested in campuses of the University of California system, connect to Those who are interested in the California State University System can connect to Independent Colleges also have a wealth of information and you can connect to

Can I transfer to an out-of-state school from Cypress College?

Cypress College is an accredited institution making its courses recognized by other institutions. Depending on the individual institutions requirements, there should be no reason why an equivalent class taken at Cypress College could not be considered for transfer.

Do “D” grades transfer?

Acceptance of “D” grades is based upon individual campus decisions. Cypress College will not certify “D” grades for inclusion in the IGETC.

Do Pass/No Pass grades transfer?

The 4-year institution will sometimes accept Pass/No Pass grades if a pass grade is considered to be a C or better. However, required courses for the general education or major should not be taken in this manner. Check with the transfer institution for more information.

How can I determine if my units from Cypress College will transfer?

This is an important issue that requires your careful attention. All California community colleges have lists of their courses that will transfer to the CSU or UC campuses at the website If you are transferring it is important that you consult with the campus to which you are planning to transfer to gain assistance with identifying the specific course necessary to meet the transfer requirements. That institution will make the final decision on what will count toward your 4-year degree. You may also consult your college counselor for assistance in determining which courses will be accepted for transfer credit.

Can I transfer to a 4-year college without an associate degree?

Yes, however, by taking courses required for transfer, you will more than likely meet the requirements for an associate degree as well. Check with a counselor.

Are there a maximum number of units I can transfer?

Specific regulations vary from college to college, however, as a general rule, for the California State University and University of California systems the maximum number of units accepted for transfer will be 70 semester units. (105 quarter units) If applying to a private university the maximum of units will vary, please check with the specific university.

What if I take more units than 70 units?

CSUs and UCs will accept a maximum 70 semester units towards the total number of units needed to complete your bachelor’s degree; however, if you have taken more units than 70 units, the content of the courses will often be used to satisfy needed requirements.

What is the minimum GPA for transfer?

The minimum GPA needed to transfer to a California State University (CSU) is 2.0.

The minimum GPA needed to transfer to the University of California (UC) is 2.4.

The GPA needed for transfer to private colleges varies so please check the college catalog. Some majors and some colleges are impacted and will require higher GPAs for admission.

What is GE?

GE or General Education is a program of courses in the arts and sciences that provides a broad educational experience. Courses are usually introductory in nature provide students with fundamental skills and knowledge in English, arts, humanities, mathematics, social sciences, physical and biological sciences. Cypress College offers general education plans for completion of the associate degree, UC , CSU transfer and some independent universities.

What is IGETC?

IGETC, Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum, is a general education program which community college transfer students can use to fulfill lower-division general education requirements in either the CSU or UC systems. You must complete the entire IGETC in order to have it accepted as meeting the general education requirements at the transfer institution. IGETC is not recommended for some majors at some UC campuses.

What is certification and why is it important for transferring students?

Certification of CSU GE or IGETC is an important step in the transfer process. The certification of GE is the official notice verifying that a transfer student has completed courses satisfying lower division general education requirements.

The certification is separate from a student transcript. The request for certification of CSU GE or IGETC is done at the time you request transcripts be sent to the transfer school. To be certified, all courses on IGETC must be completed with a grade of C or better. The CSU GE pattern can be certified in some areas with a D or better.

What are the differences between an associate degree and a bachelor’s degree?

An associate degree is a degree granted by a community college to students who complete a specified program of study, usually totaling 60 units. A bachelor degree or baccalaureate is a degree granted upon completion of at least 120 semester units or 180 quarter units. Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science Degrees are offered by the California State Universities, the University of California and private four-year colleges and universities.

How many units do I need for an associate degree?

Completion of 60 units that meet general education competency and major requirements are needed to obtain an associate degree.

What is the difference between lower division and upper division courses?

Lower division courses are offered for freshman and sophomore level credit. Upper division courses are offered for junior and senior level credit. Most courses offered at a community college are lower division courses. A few community colleges offer a bachelor’s degree and therefore offer upper division courses.

What is articulation?

Articulation is the process of evaluating courses to determine whether coursework completed at one college will meet the requirements for admission, transfer credit, general education, or major preparation at another college.

Does Cypress College have an articulation agreement with the school that I want to transfer to?

Cypress College has specific agreements with a number of CSU and UC campuses. A complete listing of Cypress College’s articulation agreements with these systems can be found on the “Assist” website at

Can I transfer to a school that does not have an agreement with Cypress College?

The articulation agreement simply makes the transfer of credit proceed quicker. If your transfer school does not have an agreement with Cypress College, classes will be evaluated for transfer on an individual basis.

Do I need to declare a major before I transfer?

It is crucial that you choose a major before transferring. In most cases you will be required to have major preparation completed before you transfer. Universities will recommend that you have preparation for major courses prior to transfer, to ensure an easier transition to their institution.

What is the difference between CSU and UC?

The California State University (CSU) is the system of higher education in California that grants the most bachelor degrees. The CSU campuses also grant masters and some doctorate degrees. The University of California (UC) is the research system of public higher education in California. The UC grants professional and doctorate degrees, as well as bachelors and masters degrees. The CSU has a more practical, career-oriented approach to education in contrast to the more theoretical approach offered by the UC.

What is meant by priority filing dates for CSU and UC?

It is important to follow all deadlines and apply to the universities on time. For the CSU system the fall application deadline is October-November 30 to transfer for the following academic year. For the UC system the fall application period is during the month of November to transfer for the following academic year.