Press Release

Transfer Program Between California Community Colleges and California State University Hits Milestone of 1,000 Associate Degrees for Transfer Developed




Students now have wide range of options for degrees that guarantee admission to CSU

The state’s new streamlined transfer program developed by California Community Colleges and California State University now offers 1,000 associate degrees for transfer in a wide variety of disciplines, making it easier for students to transfer to CSU and earn a bachelor’s degree.

California Community Colleges Chancellor Brice W. Harris praised the academic senates from both systems for working diligently to develop the new degrees offered at the system’s 112 colleges in a way that properly aligns course requirements for smoother transfer.

“Development of 1,000 degrees over a two year period is an astonishing feat,” Harris said. “These degrees guarantee admission to CSU, and students are quickly finding this is an attractive path for transfer. This program makes both systems run more efficiently and will go a long way in helping California meet its need for more college-educated workers.”

The Associate Degree for Transfer program allows community college students who complete an Associate in Arts for Transfer or an Associate in Science for Transfer degree with 60 units (two years) priority admission to a CSU program that is similar to the community college major as determined by CSU. Once admitted to CSU, students only have to complete an additional 60 units to earn a bachelor’s degree.

“Creating more than 1,000 Associate Degrees for Transfer is an important testament to the combined work of both educational systems and a win-win achievement for our students and state,” said Chancellor Timothy P. White.  “By earning both an associate’s and bachelor’s degree through this new endeavor, our graduates ‘win’ by being more competitive in the job market and earning higher wages.  With the need for at least 1 million additional degreed professionals by 2025, our state also ‘wins.’  By advancing degree completion, this new transfer pathway is supporting the economic vitality of California.”

Past studies showed that community college students transferred with an average of 80 units when only 60 semester are required for an associate degree. Then, upon arrival at the California State University, they often took excess units to make up for courses that did not transfer from their community college.

“The degree with a guarantee program means the world to me.  It means a better life for me and my family,’’ said Maria Brown, who started at Cuyamaca College and transferred to San Diego State University. “As a former foster youth, I grew up with no parents, and I never learned about college or the opportunities that were available to youth.  This program guaranteed me a spot, and it gives other former foster youth and other people of challenging backgrounds a chance to be something they never thought they could be.”

In the 2012-2013 academic year, the first full year transfer degrees were available, 1,730 Associate of Science for Transfer and 3,571 Associate of Arts for Transfer degrees were awarded to California community colleges students.

For more information about the transfer program and hear from students who have already earned these degrees and made the jump to CSU, visit


About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 437,000 students and 44,000 faculty and staff. The CSU awards about 96,000 degrees annually and since its creation in 1961 has conferred nearly 2.8 million. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. The mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California. Connect with and learn more about the CSU at CSU Social Media. Show how the CSU matters to you and take action.

About the California Community Colleges
The California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the nation. It is composed of 72 districts and 112 colleges serving 2.3 million students per year. Community colleges supply workforce training, basic skills courses in English and math, and prepare students for transfer to four-year colleges and universities. The Chancellor’s Office provides leadership, advocacy and support under the direction of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges.