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Courses Required for College Admission

To be eligible to enter a four-year college after high school, you should expect to take at least the following:

  • Language Arts (English) 4 years 
  • Mathematics 3 years
  • History/Social Science 3 years
  • Science (Laboratory) 2 or 3 years
  • Foreign Language 2 or 3 years
  • Visual and Performing Arts 1 year

To confirm the requirements of any school you are considering attending, go to their website. Another good starting point for colleges/universities in California is California

High school graduation is a minimum requirement for college admission so make sure you understand what your local district requires in order for you to earn a high school diploma. Your grade point average (GPA) can be a key factor when applying to a college or university. 

To be admitted to a California State University or University of California campus, you must first complete the A-G requirements (a sequence of courses) while in high school. 

Elite universities generally require the same number of courses but also expect students will take higher level courses, such as an Honors English course.

Use the College Planning Checklists to help you stay on track for college.