Admissions Requirements

Admission to Cypress College is governed by the laws of the State of California and such supplementary regulations as have been prescribed by the Board of Trustees.

The following people are eligible to enroll in Cypress College:

  • Any high school graduate OR
  • Any person possessing a California high school proficiency certificate OR
  • Any person eighteen years of age or older who may benefit from instruction OR
  • Any K–12 student who qualifies for the Special Admit Program. (Refer to the Special Admit section of this Catalog)

Residency Determination for Tuition Purposes

All students who apply for admission to Cypress College are classified as California residents or non California residents for tuition purposes. Residents and nonresidents are charged according to the perspective fees set by the Board of Governors of the California Community College system.

“Resident students” are those who have resided within California for at least one year prior to the residence determination date and have met the residency standards stipulated in Title 5 of the California Administrative Code. The “residence determination date” is the day immediately preceding the opening day of instruction each semester or summer session during which the student proposes to attend college in the North Orange County Community College District.

Generally, residency requires actual physical presence in California coupled with the intent to become a resident. One’s state of mind is subjective; hence, it is necessary to look at objective indications of the student’s intent. Examples of evidence that aid the college admissions officer in identifying that intent, but are not individually decisive, are:

  • California driver’s license or ID card
  • Proof of registration to vote in California
  • Licensing from California for professional practice
  • Establishing and maintaining active California bank accounts
  • California employment verification from your employer or pay stubs for the previous year
  • Ownership of residential property or occupancy of rented or leased property in California
  • State or federal income tax information document showing a ­California address
  • Exceptions apply under certain conditions to active members of the Armed Forces

“Nonresident students” are those who have not established California residency status in the state for at least one year prior to the residence determination date or those who hold certain nonimmigrant visas that preclude them from establishing residency. Foreign students admitted to the United States under student visas are classified as nonresidents.

The California Education Code and provisions in state law allow certain nonresidents the opportunity to pay in-state tuition. Students who believe they are eligible for an exemption based on any one of the following criteria should consult the Admissions and Records Office when they apply for admission to the college.

Note: In order to determine residency status, students must bring all immigration documents, including visas, passports, and I-688 information to the Admissions and Records Office at the time of applying to the college. No single item may establish a case for California residency. It is up to the applicant to provide as many documents as possible to prove validity of a change to California residency.

AB540/AB2000 allows students, including undocumented immigrant students who meet the requirements of the Education Code, to be exempt from nonresident tuition in California’s universities and colleges.

In order to qualify for this exemption a student must have attended and/or graduated from a California public or private high school after three or more years. The attainment of a GED or certificate of high school proficiency would also exempt the student from paying nonresident tuition. Students living outside the State of California and enrolled in distance education courses are not eligible for the AB540 exemption.

All students seeking this exemption must file an affidavit and high school transcripts with the college. The affidavit is included in the California Nonresident Tuition Exemption form which is available at the Admissions and Records Office.

Specific information regarding residency can be obtained from the Admissions and Records Office. Additional details can be obtained from the college website, the California Education Code and Title 5 of the California Code of Regulations.

Open Enrollment Policy

In conformity with the provisions of Title 5 of the California Administrative Code, it is the policy of the Board of Trustees of the North Orange County Community College District that, unless specifically exempted by statute, every course, course section or class, wherever offered and conducted throughout the District, shall be fully open to enrollment and participation by any person who is eligible for admission to the college and meets the stated prerequisites.

Students who are enrolling in the North Orange County Community College District for the first time and those who are returning after an absence of a Fall or Spring semester must submit the online admission application, known as Open CCCApply. Students who withdraw from the college during the first three weeks of a term must also submit a new admission application. The online application can be accessed at the college website,

Applications for admission will be accepted beginning March 1 for Summer and the Fall semester and beginning October 1 for the Spring semester.

New Enrollment Priorities Effective Fall 2014

As part of the Student Success Act 2012, Cypress College priority registration is changing. To guarantee eligibility for Priority Enrollment for Fall 2016, all New and Returning Students must meet the following three requirements:

  • Complete the assessment process — math and English placement tests (or equivalent),
  • Attend an orientation session, and
  • Complete a one semester education plan.

Returning and Continuing Students must meet the following three requirements:

  • Be in good academic and/or progress standing — not have been placed on academic dismissal and not on probationary status for two consecutive terms,
  • Have completed 75% or more units with A, B, C, CR, and P, and
  • Have not earned more than 100 degree-applicable units (at Cypress and Fullerton), excluding basic skills courses.