As a transfer applicant, you must meet the minimum coursework requirements, major preparation and lower-division general education courses listed below.

Competition for admission is high, so meeting these requirements does not guarantee your admission. Students admitted to UC San Diego exceed minimum UC admission requirements.

College Ranking

You will be asked to rank the UC San Diego colleges on your UC Application. Learn more about the colleges and get guidance on how to rank them.

Coursework

Coursework Requirements

To be eligible for transfer admission, you must complete a minimum of 60 UC-transferable semester (90 quarter) units. 

Complete the following 7-course pattern:

  • Each course must be 3 semester (4-5 quarter) units and you must complete all units by the end of spring term, prior to fall admission.
  • You need to earn a grade of C or better in each course or a Pass (P) grade if pass is equivalent to a C (2.00)
  • 2 English composition
  • 1 mathematical concepts and quantitative reasoning
  • 4 courses from at least 2 of the following:
    • Arts and humanities
    • Physical and biological sciences
    • Social and behavioral sciences

GPA (Grade-Point Average) Requirement

UC San Diego requires a competitive GPA (minimum 3.0) in UC-transferable courses. Students admitted to UC San Diego often have GPAs that exceed the minimum.

We are unable to evaluate your coursework prior to admission due to the high volume of applications, so it’s important that you confirm that your courses are transferable by visiting assist.org.

Additional Courses in ESL or Physical Education

A maximum of 4 semester (6 quarter) units of Physical Education may be applied toward the 60-unit requirement to transfer. A maximum of 8 semester (12 quarter) units of English as a Second Language (ESL) may be applied toward the 60-unit requirement to transfer. The courses must appear on your community college's Transferable Course Agreement. Some limitations apply.

Exam Credit

UC offers college credit to students who have taken and scored well on Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB) and A-level exams. Learn more about exam credit opportunities.

Major Preparation

We have established major preparation articulation agreements with many California community colleges. Visit the ASSIST website to find out how your coursework might transfer to UC San Diego.

Applicants to these departments must complete minimum coursework to be admitted into the major: Biology, Chemistry & Biochemistry, Cognitive Science, Economics, Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and Psychology. You will be screened for the number of courses completed, the grades earned in those courses and your cumulative GPA. View the major preparation courses required.

See the UC San Diego General Catalog for major details.

Capped Majors

If you are applying to a capped major (majors with limited enrollment) you are required to complete the minimum lower-division major preparation courses prior to transferring. We strongly recommend that you also indicate an alternate major on your UC application and that your alternate major not be capped. If you are not admitted to a capped major, you may be admitted to your alternate uncapped major. If you are not admitted into a capped major or you have not selected an alternate major, you will not be admitted to the university.

Lower Division GEs

When you complete lower-division general education (GE) requirements before transferring, you enjoy more flexibility in selecting courses once you enroll at UC San Diego and reduce your time to graduation. Each of UC San Diego's six Colleges has its own GE requirements, so keep that in mind when choosing your community college courses.

Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC)

IGETC is a series of California community college courses that meet UC San Diego lower-division general education (GE) requirements at UC San Diego's Muir, Marshall, Roosevelt, Sixth and Warren colleges. Revelle College requires students with IGETC to complete these additional requirements before transfer, or while enrolled at UC San Diego: 3 courses in mathematics and 5 courses in natural science.

If you plan to follow the IGETC, consider:

  • partial IGETC is also possible – this is useful if you've chosen a pre-major that requires a lower-division sequence of coursework once you get to UC San Diego;

  • following IGETC can make your path to graduation easier – once you transfer, you can concentrate on your major field of study.

To find out what courses are in the IGETC, contact the transfer center at your community college and check the ASSIST website for details on IGETC course agreements.

Limits on Transfer Units

You will be granted up to 70 semester (105 quarter) units of credit for lower-division coursework completed at any institution (or combination of institutions).

For units beyond the maximum, subject credit for appropriate coursework will be granted and may be used to satisfy requirements:

  • Units earned through AP, IB, and/or A-Level examinations are not included in the limitation. These units will not put you at risk of being denied admission.
  • Units earned at any UC campus in Extension, summer, cross/concurrent and regular academic year enrollment are not included in the limitation but are added to the maximum transfer credit allowed. These units may put you at risk of being denied admission due to excessive units.

UC San Diego accepts transfer students at the junior (third year) level only.

A transfer applicant may be considered in senior standing if he or she has completed:

  • 70 semester units (or more) of lower-division coursework; and
  • 20 semester units (or more) of upper-division coursework.

If you have questions about the number of transferable units, please call the Office of Admissions 858-534-4831.

Useful Resources

Though more than 90% of UC San Diego transfer students are from California community colleges, we also accept transfer students from other UC campuses and from four-year institutions.

Other UC Campus Students

All courses completed at a UC campus during a regular or summer session (excluding UC Extension) are transferable. UC Extension courses numbering 1–199 are also transferable.

All Other Transfer Applicants

UC San Diego accepts transfer courses from accredited post-secondary institutions similar in content to those offered in the UC system.

Transfer from Semester to Quarter System

To avoid duplicating coursework, complete all courses within a sequence before transfer (i.e. Chemistry 1A-1B).

Track Your Progress

Track your progress toward meeting UC's minimum requirements using the Transfer Admission Planner (UC TAP).

Personal Insight Questions

On your application, there is one required question you must answer. You must also answer 3 out of 7 additional questions. Each response is limited to a maximum of 350 words. Which three questions you choose to answer are up to you, but you should select questions that are most relevant to your experience and that best reflect your individual circumstances. This is your opportunity to show us your unique take on the world. Just be yourself.

Personal Insight Questions

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Personal Insight Questions

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Application Information

Transfer Students

We're looking for your insatiable curiosity and drive to build a better world.

Transfer Students

Timeline

Learn about the important dates that you'll encounter throughout the transfer application process.

Application Timeline

Review

Our goal is to identify and admit students who are fully prepared to excel in our challenging academic environment.

Application Review