Early Start Program

Am I required to enroll in Early Start?

The CSU uses multiple measures of academic proficiency to determine the need for Early Start and for placement in general education English and math courses, including:

  • high school English and mathematics grades
  • high school GPA
  • grades in collegiate courses
  • test scores (ACT, SAT, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, SAT subject tests, and Smarter Balanced Assessment/Early Assessment Program)

To determine if you are required to participate in the Early Start program review your Early Start Program Page via your Student Center in the Chico State portal to determine which Early Start subject(s) you are required to take. From Dashboard, click "Admissions" menu. Next, Click on "Early Start Program."

Note: If you do not see the Early Start Program link in your student center you are not currently required to participate.

Early Start Program in Student Center

How do I learn more about Early Start at CSU, Chico?

Go to Early Start Program(opens in new window) for answers to your questions regarding registration, course offerings, dates, costs, accessing courses, and more.

Can I take Early Start courses at another CSU campus?

Yes. Here is the Early Start Program Course Listing(opens in new window).

Can I fulfill the Early Start requirement with Community College courses?

Yes, however, you must contact the Office of Admissions to obtain approval to use a community college course to fulfill the Early Start requirement. Please contact us at 530-898-6322 or 800-542-4426, or email us at