DHFYE students are connected to a variety of campus resources to guide you throughout your first year at CSUDH.

These individuals, programs and offices will help you with your successful first-year experience.

Ariana Stein CSUDH Alumni Tip

Jonathan Henderson CSUDH Alumni Tip

Being told the type of resources available on campus for students was most helpful because often times for new transferring students like myself. Even though there are resources to help me succeed, but just not aware they exist.


Academic Advising and Support

Toro Success Collaborative (TSC) 

The University Advisement Center and the Toro Learning & Testing Center are excited to introduce NetTutor for scheduling appointments for tutoring and advising. See the Tutoring Schedule for details.

Supplemental Instruction 

Supplemental Instruction (SI) offers peer-assisted study sessions for students enrolled in historically rigorous classes. Discuss course material, develop organizational tools and study skills to prepare for exams. 

Dual Advising

CSUDH utilizes a dual advising model meaning each transfer student has two advisors. You have a general education advisor in the University Advisement Center (UAC) who handles all advising relating to your general education and overall graduation requirements. You also have a major advisor in your academic college who handles all advising related to your major. We highly recommend that you meet with both advisors at least once each semester to ensure you are on track to earning your baccalaureate degree and to avoid any “stressful surprises” in your final semester. Stay on track and make an appointment!

California Promise Thru in Two

Earn your degree in two years by taking the California Promise Thru in Two pledge and following your advising plan. Among the benefits is priority registration to make sure you obtain the classes you need, as well as personalized advising and automatic inclusion in our DH Transfer Learning Community.

Charge On to Graduation

Charge On To Graduation (COTG) is a junior intervention program designed for students who have earned 74-89 units. It is an interactive advising program intended to support students in identifying their degree requirements, creating their educational plan, and preparing for graduation. 

Peer Mentor/Coaches

Peer Mentors/Coaches are students who are sharing their experience and successful strategies to make your own experience fruitful. Your Peer Coach/Mentor will support and guide you throughout your entire first year at CSUDH. 

For more information visit the Transfer Peer Coaches (DHTLC) website.

Career Services

As you continue your academic journey, you will tap into your field of interest – your major. Learn more about any career/internship interests by connecting with career services.

Visit the Career Center website.

Resources for Studying

Quizlet: Flashcards on your phone or online

Academic Advising Resources

General Resources for Success

How to Succeed at College: Listen to get great tips, tricks and strategies for success in college and beyond!

Information Technology Support

Check out website (i.e. ZOOM, Adobe, Microsoft, Blackboard) to enhance your productivity and to make sure you can successfully complete your courses. Also, explore APPs and other resources online that can be beneficial to your overall success. Here are few quick resources/apps to get you started: Help with online platforms and navigating your student portal. If you need a laptop, headset, or webcam go to the Technology Loaner Program to make a request.

Academic Vocabulary




  • Academic Advisor: Advisors help plan your classes, meet graduation requirements, evaluate transfer credit, choose or change a major, clear mathematics and writing requirements, remove probationary status to avoid disqualification, file for graduation, prepare to enter a professional school, and plan your next semester’s schedule. CSU has general academic advisors for general education requirements, major specific advisors, and staff advisors. (At many community colleges, advisors are called “counselors”).
  • Academic History: Classes you have taken after high school, usually shown on transcripts or lists of courses from community colleges or other universities.
  • Academic Year: The academic year at CSUDH consists of two semesters, Fall and Spring. Fall semester begins in August and Spring semester begins in January. Students can also take courses in Summer terms.
  • Accreditation: Higher education “stamp of approval”. Colleges in the US are evaluated by regional and national agencies, not the government. Accreditation shows that a college or university meets minimum standards. Generally, colleges will only guarantee that they accept transfer credits if they are regionally accredited.
  • Accommodations: Adaptations for students to remove barriers in a course. Accommodations can be done with the Student disAbility Center or with the Title IX office for those who may need gender-based or sexual discrimination accommodations.
  • Add/Drop: Add a class to your course schedule through MyCSUDH during your registration time and you can also drop a class any time after that. Check deadlines carefully! Dropping a course could impact financial aid and your refund!
  • Ally: Someone who supports communities that are treated unjustly; an ally is willing to pursue ending oppression and creating equality.
  • Academic Probation: Cumulative GPA or CSUDH GPA below 2.0. Without raising GPA to above 2.0, students may be placed on suspension or disqualification. There is an appeal process for additional time to raise the GPA
  • Articulation: Comparing courses that are transferred from one college/university to another to see if an institution will accept the credit.
  • Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT): Degree from a California community college that leads to a clear transfer path to a CSU major program.
  • Associate Degree: Two-year program degree. Includes Associate of Arts (A.A.), the Associate of Science (A.S.) and the Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.).

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  • Bachelor or Baccalaureate Degree: Four-year degree. The most common are the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and the Bachelor of Science (B.S.).

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  • Catalog/Catalog Year: The CSUDH catalog includes information about General Education requirements, major requirements, and other requirements needed for graduation. It includes student policies and important dates for that academic year. The year you start at CSUDH is your “catalog year” and the requirements from that catalog apply to you for graduation. See the University Catalog online.
  • College: There are two meanings for college: one is an institution that awards degrees (community colleges, four-year colleges and universities, and vocational schools).College can also mean academic divisions in a university.  CSUDH has six colleges: College of Arts & Humanities; College of Business Administration and Public Policy; College of Education; College of Extended and International Education; College of Health Human Services, and Nursing; and College of Natural and Behavioral Sciences.
  • Commencement/Graduation: Commencement = graduation ceremony.
  • Convocation: Event at the beginning of each fall semester where faculty, staff, student leaders, and community members welcome new students.
  • Counselor: Counselors are mental health professions that work in Student Psychological Counseling Services. Counselors are available to hear your concerns, identify options, and help you find the best way to get the help you need. This can include short-term individual or group counseling or other referrals.
  • Course Number: The number your college or university uses to identify a course. You usually need this number in order to register for a class.
  • CSU Certification: CSU General Education certification from a community college verifies that a student has completed all lower division general education requirements for the CSU.
  • Culture shock: An experience a person may have when moving to a new cultural environment that is different from their own; can include feelings of anxiety, loneliness, and confusion.

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  • Degree Audit: A degree audit reviews requirements for a degree, major, minor or concentration and whether a student has met those requirements. The audit creates a "progress report" checklist. At CSUDH, this is called the Academic Requirements report.
  • Degree Requirements: The list of courses a student must pass to complete a program of study.
  • Discipline: Academic subject (example: Biology is a discipline).
  • Discourse/Dominant Discourse: Discourse refers to conversations happening in the media, in the public, and the community overall. Dominant discourse refers to the messages being given by the most powerful elements in a society and accepted by the general public.
  • Disqualification (DQ): Suspension from the university based on falling below a minimum GPA after being on academic probation. GPA minimums are based on class standing (first year, sophomore, etc.) Students can go through an appeal process to return to classes at CSUDH after being disqualified. For more information see Academic Disqualification Form.

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  • Educational Planned Leave: Students can apply for a leave of absence if they have completed at least one semester. A temporary leave of absence can be approved for a minimum of a year and a maximum two years. For more information visit: Planned Educational Leave.
  • Educational Opportunity Program (EOP): A program that supports first and second year low-income and educationally disadvantaged students. EOP provides admissions counseling, academic advising, peer mentoring, student success workshops, tutoring, and some supplemental financial aid.
  • Elective: A class you can take that is not specifically required by your major or minor.

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  • Faculty: Any professional who teaches a class for credit and is responsible for assigning students a grade for the class. Faculty are also referred to as “instructors” or “professors” at the college and university level, rather than “teachers.”
  • Faculty Advisor: Faculty members who advise students regarding major requirements, course substitutions, internships, and graduate school.
  • FAFSA: Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Website: This online form allows you to apply for all federal student aid, such as Pell Grants and Work Study. Keyword is FREE. If you are asked to pay a fee to submit your application, you are at the WRONG website. Fill out the application at
  • Financial Aid Office: Handles all financial aid programs at CSU Dominguez Hills. Including federal and state financial aid and private scholarships and loans. 
  • Financial Aid Package: Financial aid comes in three forms: gifts (scholarships and grants), loans, and student employment.
  • FERPA: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. This is a federal law that requires CSUDH to maintain the privacy of your protected student records.
  • Full Time Student: 12 units or more is full time. Taking less than 12 units will decrease your financial aid disbursement. CSUDH recommends 15 units per semester to finish on time with your degree.

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  • General Education (GE): Required classes that give you a wide range of topics and perspectives that aren’t part of your major program.
  • Graduation Requirement: Any requirement you need to meet in order to graduate (example: completing minimum of 120 units).
  • Grade point average: The average of all of the course grades you have received, on a four-point scale.
  • Grade Point Average (Major): An average based on all upper division courses taken in the major department.

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  • Hybrid Course: Courses that require both online work and meeting in person on designated times and days.

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  • IGETC (Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum) Certification: If you have IGETC certification as a transfer student, you completed all lower division general education requirements for the UC or CSU.

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  • Laboratory/Activity: Hands-on component linked to a lecture course. Attendance at both lecture and lab/activity is generally required.
  • Lower-Division: Courses numbered 100-299.

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  • Major: Course of study leading to Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree or Bachelor of Science (BS) Degree.
  • Major Or Faculty Advisor: Faculty member in your major or program of study who is assigned to advise you about course choices and degree requirements.
  • Mentor: A trusted and experienced adviser; at CSUDH, there are peer, staff, and faculty mentors.
  • Minor: A student’s secondary field of study.

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  • Office Hours: Scheduled time during the week when faculty members give students additional help outside of the classroom. Students can discuss class material, communicate about absences, ask about grades and course progress, and other academic or professional questions.

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  • Part-Time: Being enrolled in 6 units or less/semester. Taking less than 12 units decreases your financial aid disbursement.
  • Peer Mentor: See mentor. Peer mentors provide support to students and helps connect with them on their academic experience.
  • Pell Grant: Federal financial aid to support students’ college fees; limited to students with financial need, who have not earned their first bachelor’s degree, or who are enrolled in certain post-baccalaureate programs.
  • Permission Number: Number required to register for certain courses; obtained through department or faculty member teaching course.
  • Prerequisite: Requirement must be completed prior to enrolling in course. Also referred to as “pre-req”.
  • Program Chair: Faculty members in charge of one or more majors.

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  • Registrar: Office that maintains student records, including contact information, enrollment history, grades, and transcripts. This office also creates the schedule of classes and is responsible for the registration system.
  • Receiving Institution: The institution you are sending transcripts and records to as a transfer or graduate student. For transfers, CSUDH is the receiving institution.
  • Residency Requirement: The number of credits you are required to complete at that institution to graduate and earn a degree.
  • Research (see Undergraduate Research): Opportunities to work on a project with a faculty mentor or on an individual research project. Students can ask and answer research questions, conduct either qualitative or quantitative research, and learn more about a chosen field of study.

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  • Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP): Minimum completed units and GPA needed to qualify for financial aid. Students must complete 75% of the units attempted in summer, fall, and spring of an academic year; and maintain a 2.0 GPA to show Satisfactory Academic Progress.
  • Scholarship: A grant or payment made to support a student’s education, award on the basis of academic or other achievement, or by need; this money does not have to be repaid but may be taxed.
  • Section: Courses listed in Schedule of Classes may have more than one day/time they are offered; thus, section numbers are used to differentiate between them.
  • Sending Institution: A college or university that a student attended in preparation for transfer to a receiving institution.
  • Service Learning: Field-based experiential learning to get direct experience applying ideas from class to work in the community.
  • STEM: Acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
  • Student Persistence: Successful completion of courses leading to ongoing enrollment and progress towards graduation.
  • Supplemental Instruction (SI): Supplemental Instruction (SI) provides study sessions for a challenging class, led by a student who was successful in that class previously. Students learn how to study the material, how to prepare for exams, and how to get help from their classmates.
  • Syllabus: The course outline. Includes office hours, required and optional books, grading formula, reading and homework assignments and deadlines, class expectations, assignment instructions, and attendance policy.

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  • Thesis: A formal piece of writing on a specific subject, which may be required to earn a bachelor’s or graduate degree.
  • Transfer Agreement: A formal agreement between colleges/universities about how their courses match up and how students will get credit for courses completed. It guarantees that if a transfer student completes a set group of classes, they start as a junior/third-year student.
  • Transfer Credit: Transfer course work earned through college or university courses taken at other campuses, Advanced Placement (AP) tests, or International Baccalaureate (IB) tests.
  • Transfer Peer Coach: A student who has been through the transfer process and has been at CSUDH for at least one year. They help transfer students before, during, and after new student orientation. Coaches can guide new transfers to be academically successful while helping them make a smooth transition as a Toro.
  • Transfer shock: Temporary dip in GPA after transferring to a new institution. Students generally recover and increase their GPA.

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  • Undergraduate: Student who is pursuing Baccalaureate degree (Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science).
  • Undergraduate Research: Opportunities to work on a project with a faculty mentor or on an individual research project. Students can ask and answer research questions, conduct either qualitative or quantitative research, and learn more about a chosen field of study.
  • Unit: credit received for passing a course.
  • Upper-Division: courses numbered 300 and above.

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  • Waitlist: Once a course fills up, a waitlist is created for students who are interested in joining the class and waiting for open seats.
  • Withdraw: To reduce the number of hours enrolled in to zero by deleting all course from one’s class semester; depending on when you withdraw, you may receive some to no refund.
  • Work Study: Form of financial aid in which students work at an on-campus job; the department pays part of the student’s salary and the financial aid pays the rest.
  • Writing Center: A free service on campus to provide students with tutors to help complete writing assignments for all classes and to become more aware of who they are as writers.