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Open University
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CSU, Chico’s Open University program allows community members, working professionals, international or visiting students, former Chico State students and alumni to enroll in university courses during fall and spring terms on a space-available basis with instructor permission, and earn college credit.

  • There is no formal application or admission process
  • Courses are available on campus or online
  • Earn transferable credits, up to 24 units toward a bachelor’s degree or 9 units toward a master’s degree

Open University opens doors so that you can grow professionally, explore personal interests, prepare for a career change, or give university life a try.

If you are looking for a University course when the fall and spring semesters are out of session, please check out the Winter Session and Summer Session schedules.

Winter Session     Summer Session


Registration in Open University classes begins the first day of the semesterSpring 2020 begins January 21.

Step 1: Select Your Class

Select classes from the current University Class Schedule. Most in the current term class schedule are available for Open University enrollment on a space available basis and with instructor's permission (see step 3). 

If you are applying to a Chico Distance & Online Education degree program, please follow the program's separate class registration instructions.

Step 2: Request an Add/Drop Form

Complete the online request to receive an add/drop form.

Step 3: Get Permission & Signatures

Beginning the first day of class, you can request permission from the instructor to enroll in the class and for their signature on the Add/Drop Form. Permission is entirely at the instructor's discretion and is contingent upon space availability, as well as other criteria established by the instructor, department, or college. The College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management (ECC) and the College of Business require the department chair's signature in addition to the instructor.

If you are enrolling in an online class, you can forward the confirmation email you receive after submitting the online request form, which includes a copy of your request, to the instructor(s), and department chair(s) if applicable, for email approvals. Contact information can be found in the campus directory.

Open University enrollments must be completed by the fourth Friday of the semester (census date).

Step 4: Pay Fees

Return your completed Add/Drop Form or emailed approvals for online courses to Continuing Education with the full fee payment. Open University fees are $302/unit.* Forms with signatures more than ten working days old will not be accepted.

You are officially registered after your fees are paid and the forms have been processed by Continuing Education. Any debt to the University or registration hold must be resolved before registration can take place. Financial aid is not available to cover Open University fees.

Special Eligibility Requirements & Restrictions

  • Admitted CSU, Chico students are not eligible to take classes through Open University.
  • Students who have been academically disqualified or denied admission to CSU, Chico will need to obtain signatures of the instructor, department chair, and an advisor on the add/drop form. For disqualified students, Academic Advising (undergraduates) or the Graduate School (graduates). For students denied admission, approval from the Admissions Office (undergraduates) or the Graduate Coordinator (graduates) from the department in which program you were denied from. Additional information can be found on the Academic Advising website.
  • International Students / Non-U.S. Citizens must provide additional documentation on the Add/Drop form in order to enroll in university courses.
  • All students must meet campus immunization requirements or request an exemption. For more information or to request an exemption contact Student & Records Registration.
  • CSU, Chico benefitted employees (state and RF) who work a minimum (.4 appointment) are eligible for reduced Open University fees of $75/unit. Please contact Continuing Education at 530-898-6105 to confirm eligibility.
  • If you are an Open University student and decide to apply for admission to the University, you must meet all regular admission requirements. Contact the University Admissions Office for additional information.

Late Adds

All late adds after the fourth Friday of the semester (census date) require a serious and compelling reason and the signatures of the instructor, department chair, and college dean. A $10 late fee will be assessed for each class added after the fourth Friday of the semester (census date), regardless of the class start date.


  • To drop a class, an Add/Drop Form must be completed and returned to Continuing Education. Failure to do so constitutes an unofficial withdrawal and can result in a failing grade for the course.
  • Students can drop classes through the second week of class without permission.
  • After the second week, instructor permission is required to drop courses. A signature of permission is required on the Add/Drop Form, and must be no more than 10 days old when the form is presented for processing.
  • After the fourth Friday (census date), a serious and compelling reason, as well as permission of the instructor, department chair, and college dean is required to drop courses. Signatures of permission are required on the Add/Drop Form, and must be no more than 10 days old when the form is presented for processing.


  • Drop on or after the first day of the term and on or before the fourth Friday of the semester (census date): 65% refund.
  • Drop after the fourth Friday of the semester (census date): No refund.


Official transcripts are obtained from the Students Records Office. For more information, or to request a transcript, visit https://www.csuchico.edu/sro/transcript/index.shtml.


* Financial aid is not available to Open University students. You may, however, be eligible for other options, such as loans

Accessibility Accommodations: If you need special disability accommodations for accessing any information on this website, please contact Regional & Continuing Education. For accommodations for an event, workshop, or online or on-campus class, please contact the CSU, Chico Accessibility Resource Center.