California State University, Northridge: Online

About California State University Northridge

California State University Northridge (CSUN) is an accredited public university. It is located on 356 acres in the heart of Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley. CSUN was founded in 1958 as a satellite campus to Los Angeles State College. The school was officially renamed California State University, Northridge in 1971.

Today, CSUN is one of the nation’s largest single-campus universities. Alumni include California Teachers of the Year, Grammy Award winners, public officials, news casters and a space shuttle astronaut.

At Cal State Northridge, students are guided through a balance of academics and hands-on experience. Many of CSUN’s over 60 Masters degree programs are available online. Look for career-focused graduate programs in multiple fields. These range from non-profit or engineering management to humanities, health administration and taxation.

Why Consider California State Northridge?

Mission, Vision and Values

Cal State Northridge is dedicated to several key values. Commitment to Teaching, Scholarship, and Active Learning.

Enrollment, Attendance, Graduation

Cal State Northridge is dedicated to several key values. Commitment to Teaching, Scholarship, and Active Learning.i

  • 50% attended full-time, 50% part-timei
  • 89% attend on campus, 11% enrolled in some or all distance learningi
  • 7,200+ bachelors degrees, 1,865+ masters degrees, 15+ doctorate degreesi

Financial Aid

Eligible students may receive grants, loans, work study and scholarships. These could include Federal and state grants, or on and off-campus scholarships.

Graduate Admissions: A Two Application Process

Applicants to CSUN master's and doctoral programs must typically apply to both the university and the academic department. Many departments have higher admission standards than the university and require a separate application. Forms may be submitted online. There are two initial filing periods at CSUN.

  • Fall Semester: October 1 – November 30
  • Spring Semester: August 1 – August 31

Aside from any program-specific requisites, students must meet one of the following.

  • An acceptable bachelors degree with a minimum GPA of 2.5
  • An acceptable bachelors degree with a minimum GPA of 2.5 for the last 60 semester units
  • An acceptable post-bachelors degree from a regionally accredited institution and 2.5 GPA in either their cumulative undergrad GPA or the last 60 units

Start Dates

Program start dates are based on California State University Northridge semesters. For instance, the next MPA in Health Administration program begins in Fall 2017.


California State University Northridge has over 900 full-time and 1100 part-time faculty members. In addition, there are more than 270 graduate assistants.i Many members have received campus awards in teaching, scholarship or service.

What are the credentials of CSUN’s faculty?

Nearly half the faculty hold a permanent tenured or tenure-track position. Most of the permanent faculty members have doctorates or the equal terminal degree in their respective field. Several are winners of Guggenheim fellowships and Fulbright awards. Many are also practicing professionals who bring real-life experience to the classroom.

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Why Consider California State Northridge?

CSUN is a teaching university, meaning professors (not their teaching assistants) teach classes. Classroom sizes average 30 students, and the low student-teacher ratios lend to personal instruction. Students may even be asked to work alongside a professor on a research project.

Online Learning Model: Learning Management System (LMS)

CSUN online programs use a platform called the Learning Management System (LMS). This includes program-specific web tools and digital learning courses. Each online course is designed through a united effort between a member of the eLearning team and a faculty member. CSUN provides faculty and students with ongoing technical training and support for LMS.

Online Student Experience: “HUBS”

Multiple digital tools are used in Johns Hopkins University Online programs. Blackboard provides access to course work and instructors. Some programs also use Adobe Connect, a web-based conferencing tool. This is used to facilitate weekly, live office hours. Students also participate in discussions at various times using Voice Thread. Other tools include videos, group work and live talks. Students may take courses such as anatomy, microbiology and physiology within a virtual lab setting. This is the case with online nursing.

Student Support Services

Online students have access to CSUN’s ‘park-like’ campus. They may take advantage of the library, health center, bookstore, student life events and university counseling services

Through the Tseng College, which is not state funded, CSUN provides responsive student support services. These include the following.

  • A program manager and an academic lead assigned to each program
  • A cohort to ensure that all students have direct personal support

Services and Programs for Service Members and Veterans

CSUN offers credit for military training. It is a dedicated point of contact for support services for veterans, military service members, and their families.

  • Recognized student veteran organization
  • Member of Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges

California State University Northridge Accreditation

California State University Northridge is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). WASC requires schools under its authority to be re-accredited every 10 years. California State Northridge was last re-accredited in 2010 and has been preparing for its next review since mid-2016.

Academics and Degree Programs

Some programs, such as the Master of Science in Taxation, are taught on campus. Others, such as the Master of Public Health (MPH), are taught in a convenient, online format. On-time graduation rates of 75 percent or more are commonplace in CSUN programs for midcareer professionals, with most achieving on-time graduation rates of 70 to 90 percent.

Program Highlights: Online Master of Public Administration (MPA)

CSUN is California's leading provider of MPA degrees and the nation's third-largest provider (behind only Harvard and Columbia universities). CSU Northridge works with ten Los Angeles County agencies, eight cities and two counties outside of Los Angeles. Their MPA programs offer relevant theory, practical tools and strong student support. Look for three areas of emphases in high growth areas of the public sector.

  1. Health Administration
  2. Nonprofit Sector Management
  3. Public Sector Management and Leadership


Admission Requirements for ‘Classified Status’ to an MPA program requires the following.

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university
  • Minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0.
  • Successful completion of the Upper Division Writing Proficiency Exam (UDWPE)


The same faculty and industry leaders who design and teach CSUN's on-campus programs also craft the university's online programs. These are held to the same high standards. Also, faculty interaction with CSUN online students is equal to on-campus students.

Each track in the MPA program is taught by CSUN faculty who also work in the field in a range of settings and roles. The program uses an evidence-based approach to learning. It also works to instill problem solving skills through the study of real-world cases. By bringing current data into the program, CSUN provides a blend of theory and practice.

Flexible Schedule

Students are enrolled in two assigned courses per semester and attend classes as their schedule allows.

Program Requisites

Students complete a minimum of 33 credits plus a 3-credit capstone project. At least 24 of these units must be taken in residence. All coursework must maintain a 3.0 GPA. Each program entails an exam. Students in all programs take core courses plus the extra courses for their ‘track’.

MPA Program: Core Courses

There are 6 required courses.

  • Seminar in Public Administration & Its Environment
  • Research Methods in Public Administration
  • Seminar in Organization Theory and Human Behavior
  • Public Budgeting and Financial Administration
  • Seminar in Public Policy Process
  • Intergovernmental Relations

Online MPA in Health Administration

The online MPA in Health Administration program is a two-year program. The goal of the HA track is to build skills specific to leaders and managers of who work within the ever-changing industry of health care.


In addition to the core MPA courses, students take the following courses.

  • Systems for Health Delivery in the U.S.
  • Health Services Administration Theory and Practice
  • Leadership in Health Administration Practice
  • Seminar in Health Care Organization
  • Managing Change in Health Care Organizations

Learning Outcomes

Graduates may be prepared to pursue a career in several possible sectors. These might include the biomedical industry, hospitals, managed care, local, state and federal public agencies.

Online MPA in Nonprofit Sector Management

The online MPA in Nonprofit Sector Management is a two-year program. It is designed to develop leadership and management skills specific to nonprofit entities.


Aside from the core courses, students may take option courses within the MPA Nonprofit Sector Management track. These options may be taken as stand-alone graduate certificates or as part of the MPA program.

  • Overview of Non-Profit Organizational Management
  • Strategic Planning, Needs Assessment and Program Design
  • Issues and Problems in Human Resources, Board and Volunteer Management in Non-Profits
  • Non-Profit Finance and Financial Management
  • Funding and Resource Development for Non-Profit Organizations
  • Program Implementation and Management for Non-Profit Services

Learning Outcomes

Graduates may be prepared to work in all facets of the nonprofit world in both the public and private sectors.

Online MPA in Public Sector Management and Leadership

The online MPA in Public Sector Management and Leadership (PSML) is a two-year program. This program is offered not only online but also on-campus and off-campus.


Students taking the PSML option take core courses and the following pre-selected courses.

  • Intergovernmental Relations
  • Strategic Management
  • Public Sector Labor Relations
  • Seminar in Effective Public Sector Management
  • Approaches and Methods in Program Evaluation
  • Ethics and Professionalism

Learning Outcomes

Many students come to the program with a work history and an area of expertise. The goal of the program is to help graduates cultivate systems thinking. It offers both analytics and human dynamics aspects for todays’ leaders and managers.

Choose a Program at California State Northridge

Online CSUN graduate programs are designed for the working adult and mid-career professional. Find the one that aligns with your interests. Just scroll through the paid listings below. Click on the icons to read more. Then, use the on-page form to submit a request for more info. Take that next step now!


School Headquarters: California State University Northridge 18111 Nordhoff St, Northridge, California 91330


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