Colleges and Universities

In relation to universities, the term college normally refers to a part of the university which does not have degree-awarding powers in itself. Degrees are always awarded by universities whereas colleges are institutions or organizations which prepare students for the degree. Most universities do not have colleges; those that do are referred to as collegiate universities.

Ca. State Universities | University of Ca. | Private Schools | Common Application | Community Colleges

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California State Universities

The CSU is a leader in high-quality, accessible, student-focused higher education. With 23 campuses, almost 433,000 students, and 44,000 faculty and staff, they are the largest, the most diverse, and one of the most affordable university systems in the country. They offer unlimited opportunities to help students achieve their goals. They prepare graduates who go on to make a difference in the workforce. They engage in research and creative activities leading to scientific, technical, artistic and social advances. And they play a vital role in the growth and development of California’s communities and economy.

Campus Home Pages

To see where these campuses are located, go to the Map of Campus Locations.


The University of California

The University of California is home to more than 222,000 students and, in turn, to their parents and families. Each year, UC campuses welcome thousands of new students. The following admissions resources and campus information are designed to help students (and their parents) who want to attend UC as well as current students feel like part of the UC family.

Campus Web Pages for Future Students

The individual campuses provide prospective students with valuable information about applying to UC, the benefits of a UC education and the unique academic and social environment of their campus.

Additional Info about the UC


Private Schools

In the U.S., many universities and colleges are private, operated as educational and research nonprofit organizations. While most liberal arts colleges are likewise private, there are also some public liberal arts colleges. Some private universities are closely affiliated with religious organizations (for example, the University of Notre Dame) and some are directly operated by religious organizations (such as Brigham Young University).

Proprietary colleges are also private though they are most often referred to as proprietary colleges to prevent confusion with non-profit private institutions.

Like government-operated institutions, private universities are eligible for educational accreditation, but some private universities (primarily proprietary colleges) lack accreditation, and their degrees are not formally recognized.

Legally, private universities may not discriminate, but generally have a somewhat free hand in setting admissions policies. For example, universities in the Ivy League based their selections on many secondary factors other than academic performance, up through the beginning of the 20th century. Since the post WW2-era, however, following in the mold of James Bryant Conant at Harvard, most private universities have made enormous strides in becoming meritocratic. The nation’s private institutions now make broad efforts to recruit students from underprivileged backgrounds.

The U.S. system of education has also been transplanted to other countries. Private universities such as the American University in Cairo and the American University of Afghanistan typically offer a liberal arts curriculum to their students.

Tuition fees at private universities tend to be higher than at public universities though many private universities offer financial aid as well.


Common Application

There are over 450 Common Application members in at least 46 states and the District of Columbia, as well as in France, Germany, Italy, Scotland and Switzerland.

Visit the Common Application website All Members page for an up to date list

If the school you are interested in does not appear on the All Members page, visit the school’s web site or contact their admissions office for application information.


California Community Colleges

A California Community College is a publicly supported and locally oriented college that provides programs to: help you transfer to a four-year college, pursue career education programs, take remedial or “catch-up” programs, and offer coursework for cultural growth, life enrichment, and skills improvement.

The California Community Colleges are one educational option among many. In California, some students apply to the University of California or the California State University or independent universities and colleges. The California Community Colleges, though, offer many students huge advantages through a greater variety of programs.

At a community college you can take classes to prepare you for college-level math and English, receive career training to get in the workforce quickly and affordably, and complete lower division courses that are transferable to a four-year college or university.

A community college is a good choice for anyone who may want to attend a four-year school later but who is not yet academically, personally, or economically ready to begin study at a university. Community college is also a good option for those who are unemployed or under-employed and want to be retrained to work in emerging and in-demand industries such as health care and green jobs.

The closest Community College to CPH is Southwestern College. However their are several others nearby including: