Competitive Admission Process (Impaction)

Admission to San José State is competitive in all majors because SJSU continues to have more qualified applicants than available new student spaces. This situation is called "impaction" and it means that meeting the minimum California State University (CSU) requirements does not guarantee admission to SJSU. We will no longer have the enrollment capacity to accept all CSU eligible applicants.

San José State gives preference in the competitive admission process to “local” applicants. For transfer applicants, you are considered a “local” applicant if you will earn the majority of your transferable units at a college located in Santa Clara or Santa Cruz county.

All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply to an alternative campus that offers your preferred major.

Impaction Criteria for Transfers

CSU eligible transfer applicants will be ranked in each major based on their self-reported GPA (as reported in the required supplemental application). Some programs will give preference in the impaction process to transfer applicants who have completed program-specific preparatory courses. For these programs, applicants will be ranked for admission to major based on a combination of self-reported GPA and successful completion of approved program-specific courses by the end of the preceding Spring term.

More information about supplemental criteria for transfer students can be found on our Programs with Supplemental Criteria page.  

Spring Results:


Choose Your Major Carefully

It is important to understand that though all majors are impacted, the admission threshold for each major varies, depending on the capacity of the major to take new students, and the number of students applying for that major in that term.

We encourage you to apply for the major in which you intend to earn a degree. Change of major is prohibited during the application and admission process. After you are admitted, change of major is never guaranteed and is by petition only. Your mandatory orientation, advising and registration will all be based on your choice of major. 

In addition, we encourage you to look at the admission thresholds by major at SJSU for recent terms, and to apply to an alternative campus that offers your major.

You must enter an alternative major on your application to SJSU. We will consider the alternate major for those applicants who did not meet the impaction threshold to their first choice major. We will only admit to alternate majors if there is additional capacity for new student enrollment in that major.

For a complete list of degrees, including graduate degrees and credentials, see

Have questions? Ask us!