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Regional and Continuing Education

Our Mission

Regional and Continuing Education strengthens and expands the resources of the University to respond to lifelong learning needs.

Our Audience

Recognizing the varied needs of the Chico State student, Continuing Education administers credit and non-credit courses beyond the regular University class schedule, including degree completion programs and accelerated academic sessions during the winter and summer.

As the anchor institution in Northern California, California State University, Chico serves a twelve-county service area, the largest in the CSU system. Continuing Education is dedicated to providing higher education access to this distributed population through regional programs, Open University, and the delivery of accredited degrees via distance education.

California State University, Chico is recognized for a wide variety of academic achievements and the creation and delivery of regional, State and international programs. Sharing and maintaining this public trust with the world is a primary mission for Regional and Continuing Education.

Our Programs

Special Session courses are approved course offerings available on a selected basis throughout the year. They carry residence credit with no limit on the number of units that can be applied to a degree program. Fees are charged on a per-unit basis and are separate from regular University semester fees.

Special Session courses are open to the general public, and there is no formal admission requirement. Enrollment in Special Session does not constitute formal admission to the University.

Frequently, organizations and groups of individuals express a desire for special courses, seminars, or workshops to satisfy their own specific needs. Whether the need is for academic or professional credit, Continuing Education can provide a flexible and responsive solution.

Regional Programs support the University mission by extending educational programming and services throughout Northern California.

A nationally recognized leader in distance education, CSU, Chico has provided degree completion programs for students who live at a distance from campus since 1975.

CSU, Chico also offers a degree completion program at the Shasta College University Center in downtown Redding. Students can complete the degree without traveling to Chico, or take courses and transfer to the main campus.

To serve the professionals of the region, Continuing Education offers a wide variety of non-credit workshops and conferences encompassing personal enrichment and professional development topics.

Continuing Education offers conference planning and event management services, for professional and academic groups to advance their fields and share learning opportunities. Every year, these conferences attract hundreds of participants to the beautiful Chico campus, many for the first time.

Open University provides an opportunity for residents of CSU, Chico’s service area to have access to regularly-scheduled University classes on a limited basis, without formal admission to the University. Students select the classes they wish to attend through Open University from the current schedule of courses and attend the first meeting of the desired course to request permission of the professor to enroll.

Permission is contingent upon whether or not there is a vacancy, as well as other criteria established by the professor, the department, or the college. Detailed instructions and Open University forms are available on the Continuing Education website.

Students participating in classes as a regularly-enrolled student may not enroll through Open University. Open University students who decide to apply for admission to the University must meet all the regular admission requirements.

The maximum number of Open University units that may be applied towards an undergraduate (B.A. or B.S.) degree is 24 units. All undergraduates, as well as graduate students pursuing a master’s degree, should refer to the department office of the appropriate major for the unit limit.

Chico Distance & Online Education offers a variety of courses and degree completion programs online.

Students may combine Chico Distance & Online Education, Special Session, summer and winter sessions, and on-campus attendance to meet the degree requirements of these programs. Advising is mandatory in all distance education degree programs.

California State University, Chico is considered a pioneer in both live streaming and asynchronous online course and degree programming production and delivery.

Regional and Continuing Education has administered distance education programming for 40 years: first via a regional microwave link, then through a national satellite network, and now for 20 years, online.

The American Language and Culture Institute (ALCI Chico) provides intensive English language instruction and introduces the American culture and the system of higher education to international students. Many students who attend ALCI have applied for University admission and have met all other entrance requirements, with the exception of language proficiency.

Non-university bound international students and adults seeking to improve their English language and US American culture skills for personal and professional development also attend ALCI Chico.

In addition to intensive English language course-work, students participate in various recreational and educational activities designed to facilitate a smooth transition to the University environment and enhance an understanding of American society. Instruction is offered year-round in five, seven-week sessions.

Established on the Chico campus in 2004 through the generous support from the Bernard Osher Foundation, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) is a peer-led, learning in retirement organization that offers a wide variety of non-credit classes and activities for adults, age 50+ or retired. OLLI provides members the opportunity to stimulate the mind, meet other adults in the community, explore new topics, discuss current events and network with other talented and interesting people.

In addition to OLLI, the Bernard Osher Foundation also supports the Osher Re-entry Scholarship Program dedicated to support re-entry students who are returning to the University to complete their degree.

For a comprehensive list of Regional & Continuing programs, course schedules and services please visit or call 530-898-6105.

Catalog Cycle:18