Jul 22, 2024  
2016-2018 Catalog 
2016-2018 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

2016-2018 Catalog

California State University San Marcos


California State University San Marcos is an academic community dedicated to the values of:

Intellectual Engagement

Learning, teaching, discovery, and application of knowledge


Shared commitments to service, teamwork, and partnership


Respect, honesty, trust, fairness, academic freedom, and responsibility


Creativity, openness to change, flexibility, responsiveness, and future focus


Individual and cultural diversity, and multiple perspectives


California State University San Marcos focuses on the student as an active participant in the learning process. Students work closely with a faculty of active scholars and artists, whose commitment to sustained excellence in teaching, research, and community partnership enhances student learning. The university offers rigorous undergraduate and graduate programs distinguished by exemplary teaching, innovative curricula, and the application of new technologies. Cal State San Marcos provides a range of services that respond to the needs of a student body with diverse backgrounds, expanding student access to an excellent and affordable education. As a public university, Cal State San Marcos grounds its mission in the public trust, alignment with regional needs, and sustained enrichment of the intellectual, civic, economic, and cultural life of our region and state.


In its second decade, California State University San Marcos will become a distinctive public university known for academic excellence, service to the community, and improving learning through creative uses of technology. In its teaching and student services, Cal State San Marcos will combine the academic strengths of a large university with the close personal interactions characteristic of smaller institutions. Our curriculum will build upon its strong foundation in the liberal arts and sciences to increase student achievement of the knowledge, skills, and competencies needed in a global society experiencing accelerated technological, social, and environmental change. Students also will select from a growing array of specialized programs responsive to state and regional needs. All members of the campus will work to provide an environment that supports the work of students and faculty. Cal State San Marcos will celebrate and capitalize on its diversity to form a learning community committed to this shared vision.

California State University San Marcos

Founded in1989, California State University San Marcos opened its doors to students in fall l990, and became the 20th campus to be established in the 23-campus CSU system.Today, more than14,000 students attend the 304-acre campus, which is located in the foothills of northern San Diego County, just a short distance from some of Southern California’s best beaches and an hour from the U.S.-M.exico border. CSUSM is a dynamic university with a global vision. A distinctive feature of the university curriculum is its emphasis on hands-on experiences. The campus’s modem, state-of-the-art facilities provide students access to science and computer labs featuring some of the finest equipment available today. Cal State San Marcos prepares students to become life-long learners and productive contributors to a global society by helping them acquire knowledge and develop skills and values. CSUSM is one of 34 public universities in the U.S. recognized by the Carnegie Foundation in the Community Engagement Classification for both Curricular Engagement and Outreach & Partnerships.

CSUSM The University of Choice

In just 25 years,CSUSM has become the University of Choice for an increasing number of students from all over southern California, including Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Diego counties. The campus’s success is built on the foundation of its core mission which ensures students will become the leaders of tomorrow. The university’s five strategic priorities - academic excellence, student life, campus climate, community partnerships and educational equity - keep it on track in meeting today’s challenges while building a legacy of access to quality education. Here’s what graduating seniors say about their CSUSM education:

  • 96.6% say they use computers and information technology
  • 95.5% say they can think critically and analytically
  • 90.8% say they acquired a broad general education
  • 89.8% say they can write clearly and effectively
  • 85.7% say they have worked collaboratively

Student Profile


Male 39%
Female 61%


African American/Black 3.3%
Asian & Pacific Islander 10.4%
Latino 41.4%
Native American .3%
White 30.8%
Other /Unknown 8.4%
Multiple Race 5.5%

Campus Community

Undergraduate 95.2%
Credential 1.7%
Graduate 3.1%

New Freshman Come From

North San Diego County 32%
Other San Diego County 22.5%
Riverside County 25.7%
Orange County 6.1%
Los Angeles County 3.2%
San Bernardino County 2.1%
Elsewhere in California 3.5%
Out of State 2.3%
Foreign Countries 1.9%
Other- Military I GED 0.7%

Most Popular Majors

Business Administration
Human Development
Criminology and Justice Studies
Computer Science
Liberal Studies

Campus Life

Students at CSU San Marcos can choose from over 100 student organizations, Greek affiliations, and a variety of multicultural programs. Students have the opportunity to enjoy leadership development, build a support network, and plan activities. The diverse array of student organizations offers students numerous opportunities to enhance their academic and social life on campus. Every student who is motivated can take a leadership role in a student organization.


CSUSM offers two unique apartment communities for students: University Village Apartments and The QUAD. The fully­-furnished, modern apartments offer single-level floor plans with private and shared room options. Amenities at each complex include a multi-system game cave, recreation areas, a fitness center and a resort-style pool.