Exploring Universities

Assessing Educational Fit

Figuring out what institutions you would like to attend involves more than memorizing the admissions requirements and worrying about whether you will have the grades to get in. You also need to consider whether the institution fits your needs, given your intellectual interests, career goals, and individual characteristics and concerns. The goal is to find a good match for you and the institution; that is, a place that welcomes your contributions and, in turn, accommodates your needs. Here are some questions to consider about the transfer destinations you have in mind:

White puzzle with one red piece in center.When considering potential transfer destinations, students should ask, "Is this a good fit for me and the institution?"
  • Does the institution's major or program of study match up well with your idea of the major or program? The academic focus of a major may vary greatly from college to college.

    For example, just because a transfer institution offers a major in Communications and Media does not mean that it provides training in journalism. Check the college's catalog carefully and review the course list.

  • What is the composition of the overall student body? Does the institution enroll many transfer students each year? What is the ratio of lower- to upper-division students? What is the ratio of undergraduates to graduate/professional school students?

  • Does the institution have a new-student orientation program designed specifically for transfer students?

  • Does the institution have pretransfer advising services to help you with the application process?

  • How and when does the institution provide you with an official credit evaluation showing how courses you've completed at the community college apply toward the degree?

  • Does the institution have places for transfer students to meet one another on campus, such as a transfer students' lounge?

  • Does the receiving institution have on-campus housing reserved for transfer students? If not, is there a housing office to help students locate accommodations in the community?

  • Does the institution accommodate students with families? For example, is family student housing available? Does the institution offer child care services? Are these services affordable and accessible?

  • Is there an office for students with disabilities? What specific services are provided?

  • Is the career center well supported? What kinds of job placement services are available?

  • Does the institution offer special financial aid resources or counseling for transfer students?

  • When are classes offered? Are most scheduled in the morning and early afternoon? Are there opportunities to complete courses online, in the evening, or off campus?

Adapted from The Community College Counselor Sourcebook (The College Board, 2009).

Resources for Exploring Universities

The Transfer Center houses a library of materials to further assist you as you explore colleges and universities. Visit the center to browse through materials such as:

One Way sign.In addition, below is a wealth of resources you can use to explore and investigate potential transfer destinations. Don't forget that your counselor and the Transfer Center are available to help you stay on your path!

Resources for Exploring Universities
Resource Description
(Articulation System Stimulating Inter-institutional Student Transfer)
Comprehensive resource for public California universities. Use this site to explore universities, major options, and course articulation.
California Colleges

Provides information about public and private institutions in California; Use this site to explore colleges, view sample financing plans, and track your GE progress using the transfer planner.

Follow these steps to obtain private school GE information:

  • Select "Admissions"
  • Select "California Independent Colleges"
  • Under the Admissions menu, select "Admission Requirements"
  • Under the Admissions menu, select "Transfer Admission"
  • Under the Admissions menu, select "Articulation Information"
Campus Visits & Tours

The Transfer Center sponsors visits to different university campuses. Check the Transfer Center website for the schedule!

Colleges and universities offer campus tours throughout the year!

Take campus tours via the web! Check out:

Black Colleges (HBCU Mentor) HBCU Mentor is an online portal to the historically black colleges and universities in the United States. Use this site to explore universities and find a college that is right for you.
College and University Fairs

Transfer Day: Annual college fair held at the Ohlone College campus. Over 40 colleges and universities visit Ohlone College to provide resources and information geared toward the transfer student.

WACAC/NACAC College Fair: Hundreds of colleges and universities are represented at WACAC and NACAC college fairs, which are held across the United States. Visit their website for a fair near you!

NACAC Performing and Visual Arts College Fair: The Performing and Visual Arts (PVA) College Fairs are designed for students interested in pursuing undergraduate and graduate study in the areas of music, dance, theater, visual arts, graphic design, and other related disciplines.

Held each fall, attendees learn about educational opportunities, admission and financial aid, portfolio days, audition and entrance requirements, and much more by meeting with representatives from colleges, universities, conservatories, festivals and other educational institutions with specialized programs in the visual and performing arts. Visit their website for a fair near you!

College Navigator Maintained by the U.S. Department of Education and includes a college and university database indicating type of college, for-profit or non-profit, and location.
College/University Catalog Provides descriptions about the major and related career opportunities, its degree requirements, courses you can/should take at the community college, as well as, at the university, upon transfer. Also contains university academic policies, course numbering system, and additional degree requirements. To access catalogs online, visit College Source using a computer located on the Ohlone campus.
Counseling Department

Meet with an Ohlone College counselor to:

  • Consider university options
  • Strategize major preparation, admission eligibility, and competitiveness as it relates to your selected universities.
  • Develop a balanced plan that reflects your interests, skills, priorities, and personal growth.
Eureka Career Information System

Eureka is a comprehensive career and educational information internet site. Students need to request an "Eureka Site ID Code" to utilize this resource by contacting the Transfer Center. Some features include:

  • Self-Assessment: You can take different inventories about your interests and skills and trace your findings with related occupations and/or majors.
  • Occupational Information: You can search for a specific occupation and trace its job outlook, salary potential, as well as majors that lead to this particular occupation.

College Information: You can search for a specific major and trace the possible occupations this major leads to as well as locate public California colleges and universities that have your major.

Individual University Website View list of student clubs, organizations, and activities; research student life opportunities, services, and resources. Research scope and philosophy of specific programs, departments, faculty, etc. Explore major-related opportunities such as internships, research projects, student organizations.
CSU Apply

Plan, explore, and apply to the California State University using this website.

CSU Apply features:

  • Matching Assistant - Match search preferences with campus characteristics.
  • Transfer planner - Track and plan coursework to meet CSU GE.
  • Financial aid information - Overview; cost calculator; SLOPE student loan payment calculator; FAFSA on the web.
  • Online application - There is an excellent video tutorial that explains how to complete the various parts of the application; check for open and closed majors as well as messages from individual campuses.
UC Transfer Specifically designed for California Community College transfer students, this website explains what you need to do to transfer and how you can make smart course choices now that will maximize your chances of being admitted to UC.
Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) WUE (woo-wee) stands for the Western Undergraduate Exchange, a program by which students in the Western states may enroll in participating community colleges and public universities at a reduced tuition level. In all cases, WUE tuition is less than nonresident tuition.
University Rep Visits University representatives visit Ohlone College throughout the year to provide one-on-one transfer advising! View their schedule and see who is coming!
Transfer Center

Provides resources for university/major exploration such as a library of catalogs, recommendation guides, and reference handbooks.

Services include university representative visits, transfer workshops, and information sessions.