Visiting Student Program

Program Overview

The Visiting Student Program is designed to allow international students who meet the required standards in English proficiency to experience one or two semesters of university study at California State University, East Bay. Students gain invaluable exposure to the university culture and academic study of the United States and its Northern California San Francisco Bay area region. Students meet regularly admitted California State University, East Bay students in all their classes and can use the facilities of the university as regularly admitted students.

Ideal students:

  • Students in their "gap" year between high school and university
  • Students who want to take a break from their studies at a university in their home country
  • Students who want to take university courses for the cultural experience and the practice in using English
  • Students who want to improve their GPA
  • A TOEFL iBT score of 71, IELTS score of 6.0, Duolingo English Test 100 or equivalent is required. Consult with the ALP Visiting Student Advisor if you are in doubt as to whether your English level is sufficient
  • A complete transcript of college/university coursework in English


Visiting Student Program (VSP)

VSP fees
Application Fee


$150 one-time application fee & each time deferring or changing program
Registration Fee / Semester
Student Health Services Fee / Semester $205
Course Fees Undergraduate level courses $392/unit

Graduate level courses $448/unit
Total Fees / Semester $5,209 (12 units undergraduate level courses)
$4,537 (9 units graduate level courses)

*Fees are subject to change without notice

* VSP students are required to take minimum 12 units/semester of undergraduate courses or 9 units/semester of graduate level courses to maintain their full-time student status. 12 units must be taken if taking both undergraduate and graduate courses during the same semester.

* Tuition is determined by course level and amount of units enrolled in. If student is enrolled in more than 12 units, additional fees will be charged.

* Credit Transfer: A maximum of 24 Open University semester units can be transferred to an undergraduate degree program or 9 maximum units towards a graduate degree program, subject to approval by the academic department that runs the program.

* Students who drop a class or who are dropped for non-payment during the DROP period are entitled to a 100% refund of tuition paid for that class. Students who withdraw after the DROP date but on or before the twenty-first instructional day in an academic term are entitled to a 65% refund of tuition. No refund will be given for withdrawals after the twenty-first instructional day.

Students in the program choose a subject area to focus their studies at California State University, East Bay. Students work with their home university advisor before they arrive and in the first weeks of the semester to choose courses that interest them, or are required to fulfill credits toward their home country university, or are applying to a degree in the United States.

Visiting students usually register for four regular undergraduate classes (4 x 3 units) per semester through the Open University system. In this system, they can take any class they are academically qualified to take and that are open during the online registration period. These courses are offered on a space available basis, and we cannot guarantee that any specific course will be available as priority will be given to degree seeking matriculated students. If the courses you would like to take are not available, you'd have to find something else to meet the full-time (12 units) requirement. 

*Applicants may apply for a maximum of two terms (Fall, Spring) in the Visiting Student Program, or 3 terms including a Summer term. 

Detailed Open University class registration procedures and timelines are given at the New Student Orientation at the beginning of every semester.

For a California State University, East Bay class schedule, please refer to the online class listing.