Javascript is currently not supported, or is disabled by this browser. Please enable Javascript for full functionality.

Skip to Main Content
Pacific Oaks College    
2011-2012 PO Academic Catalog and Student Handbook 
  Jun 15, 2024
2011-2012 PO Academic Catalog and Student Handbook [Archived Catalog]

Admission Requirements

Undergraduate Admission


Traditional Admission

Pacific Oaks offers only upper division courses at the undergraduate level. Applicants for the Human Development, B.A. must have a minimum of 64 semester credits of transferable courses from accredited two or four-year institutions. In addition, applicants must be able to critically analyze literature and situations, and possess strong oral and written communication skills. Consideration is given to the potential to succeed in an experiential academic program.

Visit the College website for admission applications and an Admissions Overview

Student Status Requirements

Enrollment at Pacific Oaks College is defined as follows:


Fall & Spring Terms

B.A.       Full-Time = 12 or more credits

                        Half-Time = 6-11 credits

                        Less than Half-Time = 5 or less credits


Summer Term

B.A.       Full-Time = 6 or more credits

                        Half-Time = 3-5 credits

                        Less than Half-Time = 2 or less credits


General Education Transfer Requirements

Transfer requirements for traditional admission to the B.A. degree program include completion of a minimum of 64 semester credits with a grade of “C” or higher. Only courses taken at colleges and universities accredited by regional commissions will be accepted. Please check with the transfer center at the colleges attended to see if an articulation agreement is in place to assist you in selecting acceptable courses for transfer. The Pacific Oaks Admissions or Registrar’s Office determine whether or not a course is acceptable.

Applicants short of general education requirements may take CLEP (College Level Exam Program) tests to acquire credits. A maximum of 30 credits may transfer. Applicants with no more than two outstanding courses from the four general education categories may be considered for admission. 

Contact the Admissions Office at (626) 397-1349 or (800) 684-0900 for more information on the above.

Transfer credits need to be in five (5) basic content areas as follows:

  1. Oral and Written Expression: A minimum of 9 semester credits including English Composition. * Additional courses may include Creative Writing, English or American Literature, Introductory or Communicatory Linguistics, Journalism, Early Childhood  Education  Language Arts , Logic, Critical Thinking, Speech/Communication, Foreign Language ( 1-3 ), Writing for Specific Occupations, and American Sign Language. 
  2. Science and Math: A minimum of 9 semester credits  may include courses in Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Forensics, Physics, Ecology, Geology, Math (College Algebra or higher),  Applied Algebra/Physics/Mathematics, Environmental Science, Anthropology,  Physical Geography, Physiological  or Statistical  Psychology, Nutrition, Statistics, Symbolic Logic, and Zoology. Additional courses may apply depending upon subject concentration including Accounting /Finance/Banking, Business Math, Computer Science, Computer and Information Systems, Computer Programming, Engineering, Fire Science, Investigation Sciences, Anatomy and Physiology, Materials Sciences, Botany/Cultivation Sciences, Climatology/Meteorology, Early Childhood Education Math/Science, and Health Education.
  3. Social Sciences: A minimum of 9 semester credits including required courses in Introductory Psychology and either Introductory Sociology or Cultural Anthropology*.  Applied courses may include: Theoretical Early Childhood Education/Child Development courses Political Science, Social Linguistics, Religious Studies, Psychology, Social Geography, Sociology, and History.   Additional courses may apply depending upon subject concentration including Legal Systems, Law and Society, Administration of Justice, Global Studies, and Philosophy.
  4. Humanities and the Arts: A minimum of 9 semester credits may include Art History, Art, Architecture, Photography, History, Mythology, Foreign Language (1-3) ,  Foreign Language Literature in Translation, Literature, Music , Philosophy, Theater, Drama /Performance , Children’s Literature,  Music or Art for Children,  and Humanities.   Additional courses may apply depending upon subject concentration including Storytelling, Speech/Rhetoric, Psychology of Literature/Language, Religious Narratives in Translation, Global Studies, Media Studies, and Journalism.
  5. Electives: Additional credits may be transferred from Early Childhood Education/Child Development, Physical Education Activity (4 credits maximum) or other transferable courses not listed in areas 1-4 above. 

       Most University of California / California State University transferrable courses accepted for elective credit.   

       Courses not accepted for transfer include the following:

  •  Remedial courses
  •  Orientation courses 
  •  ESL Courses
  •  Word/data processing courses

Options for Earning Additional Transferable Credits 

Applicants may earn up to 94 semester credits of classes listed under the four (4) basic areas and acceptable electives. 

Proof of B.A. degree or completion of 64-94 transferable semester credits is required for all admissions.  If you are admitted with any general education deficiencies, then we highly recommend that you complete them within your first year of matriculation to avoid delay in graduation.  NOTE:  All transfer credit must be completed prior to your final semester of enrollment at Pacific Oaks.  You must be enrolled in course work at Pacific Oaks College in the semester you graduate from Pacific Oak College.


Credit For Life Experience (CLE)

Pacific Oaks understands that what a student learns on the job can be as valuable as what is learned in the classroom, and we offer a way for students to use that real-world experience to accelerate degree completion and career advancement.

Students pursuing a B.A. may qualify for up to 30 credits for life experience, which can be applied toward a bachelor’s degree and additionally counted toward the prerequisite coursework needed for admission into the Marital and Family Therapy, M.A. or Human Development, M.A. programs. For students who successfully complete a three-credit “Reflections on Life Experience” course HD 489 qualify for the full 30 life experience credits, and who meet the other application criteria, the requirement of a B.A. degree may be waived for admission to an M.A. program.

Pacific Oaks’ Credit for Life Experience option conforms with policies set forth by our accrediting body, the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

Credit options: Reflective Study Sequence of Courses

Upon completion of HD 489 the student has three options for recording credit for HD 484-488 Reflective Study. [1] 

Option 1: Continue with enrollment in the traditional Human Development, B.A. program.

Option 2: Applying for 3 to 30 credits of Reflective Study credit.

Option 3: Applying to waive the B.A. requirement for admission to the M.A. program.


Before applying to waive the B.A. the student must do the following:

a. Complete all general education transfer requirements for full admission into the Human Development, B.A. program

b. Complete HD 489.

c. Apply for 30 credits of Reflective Study credit.

d. Complete a second undergraduate Pacific Oaks course: HD 341, HD 351, HD 411, or HD 416.

As part of the waiver application, the student must do the following:

  • Write a response to a supplemental questionnaire.
  • Complete an interview with faculty representative from HD or MFT departments.


Reflective Study credit does not count toward the 30 Pacific Oaks credits required in residence for completion of the Human Development major for the B.A. It does count toward the total 124 credits required for the BA. Reflective Study offers a full syllabus including the option of credit for prior experiential learning. Each course title below identifies a set of learning objectives that can be challenged by a student whose life experience has enabled her/him to meet them. The challenge process takes place following successful completion of HD 489 Reflection on Life Experience.

HD 484A Reflective Study: Developmental Theory 3 credits
HD 484B Reflective Study: Development Analysis   3 credits
HD 485A Reflective Study: Diversity Theory 3 credits
HD 485B Reflective Study: Diversity Analysis   3 credits
HD 486A Reflective Study: Fieldwork 3 credits
HD 486B Reflective Study: Implementation 3 credits
HD 487A Reflective Study: Research I 3 credits
HD 487B Reflective Study: Research II   3 credits
HD 488A Reflective Study: Portfolio 3 credits
HD 488B Reflective Study: Presentation   3 credits


Credits for Life Experience (C.L.E.) Track Options


Bachelor’s Degree Completion Track 1: Credit for Life Experience as an Elective

Human Development, B.A. students may elect to take the HD 489 Reflection on Life Experience course as an elective for a total of 3 credits. This elective course will serve as 3 credits of the required 124 credits needed for successful completion of a B.A. degree in Human Development.


Bachelor’s Degree Completion Track 2: Receiving Additional Credit for Credit for Life Experience Coursework

Human Development, B.A. students with 64 to 91 transferable credits and 5 years or more of work experience may elect to take the HD 489, Reflections on Life Experience, course for a total of 3 credits. After successful completion of the HD 489, Reflections on Life Experience course, students may apply to earn up to 30 credits by Credit for Life Experience, which can be applied toward a B.A. degree in Human Development. Approval of Credit for Life Experience will be determined by a designated academic committee and sole discretion for approval lies with Pacific Oaks College. The application procedure is as follows:

The application process is initiated by a student. Applications are available from the Registrar’s office.

The instructor of HD 489, Reflection on Life Experience, verifies that the student has successfully completed the required assignments and returns the papers, portfolio, and presentation paperwork to the student who includes these materials in the application packet.

Faculty evaluators review the student’s work and verify that the student has met the assignment requirements and the work experience qualifications. If a student wishes to challenge the evaluators’ decisions, the Human Development program Chair may be called for an additional assessment. That decision will be final. Evaluators deliver the completed application to the registrar’s office. A copy of the application is kept with the student’s file in the registrar’s office. The application packet, including ten HD 489 assignments, is maintained in the Human Development office for program review purposes.

If approved, the Registrar’s office enters approved Credit for Life Experience credits onto the student’s transcript. Students are notified by the Registrar’s office of the results.

Credit for Life Experience coursework and approved C.L.E. credits, plus passing evaluations on all required courses for a B.A. in Human Development, for total of 124 credits, will result in successful degree completion.


Bachelor’s Degree Waiver Track 3: Admission to a Master’s Program

An admitted and eligible B.A. student who desires entrance into the Human Development, M.A. or the Marital and Family Therapy, M.A. program may apply to have the Bachelor Degree requirement of the admission process waived. Approval of the Application for Waiver is not guaranteed and the decision rests within the sole discretion of Pacific Oaks College. Successful awarding of a Master’s Degree earned under the B.A. Waiver policy does not guarantee acceptance of the degree by any other institution or entity.

Any student who wishes to apply for the Bachelor’s Degree waiver must register for and successfully complete HD 489, Reflections on Life Experience. In addition, any student must also register for and successfully complete one of the following courses:

HD 416 Leadership in Education

HD 411 Working with Adults

HD 351 Conflict Resolution

HD 341 Communication for Empowerment 

(Concurrent enrollment in HD 489 and the additional course chosen from these options is recommended, but not required.)

After completion of the above two courses, a student should apply for 30 additional credits of Credit by Life Experience. A total of 30 credits of Credit for Life Experience are required for the waiver. Approval of Credit for Life Experience will be determined by a designated academic committee and sole discretion for the decision lies with Pacific Oaks College. Once the 30 credits of Credit for Life Experience credits are earned, a student may apply for the Bachelor Degree Waiver by submitting the following to either the M.A. in Human Development or M.A. in Marital and Family Therapy program: 

1. Complete Bachelor Degree Waiver application including questionnaire.

2. Resume, including work and volunteer experience.

3. Narrative evaluations demonstrating successful completion of the two required courses.

4. Papers, portfolio, and presentation documentation from the “Reflections on Life Experience” class.

5. Transcript documenting completion of transfer requirements. 

In addition, a student must also participate in an interview with either the MFT or HD department faculty depending on the program for which the waiver is requested.

If the Bachelor’s Degree completion waiver is approved and admission is granted into the HD M.A. or the MFT M.A. program, successful Master’s degree completion requires the following:

  1. HD M.A.: successful completion of a minimum of 30 degree credits from Pacific Oaks College; and…
  2. MFT M.A.: successful completion of the required number of degree credits specific to the selected cohort or self-paced group.


Graduate Admission


Traditional Admission

Applicants for Pacific Oaks graduate degrees, the Human Development, M.A. and the Marital and Family Therapy, M.A., must have an earned B.A. degree from a regionally accredited college or university. In addition, applicants must be able to critically analyze literature and situation. Consideration will be given to the potential to succeed in an experiential academic program. 

Visit the College website for admission applications and an Admissions Overview


 Student Status Requirements

 Enrollment at Pacific Oaks College is defined as follows:


Fall & Spring Terms

M.A.   Full-Time = 8 or more credits

                     Half-Time = 4-7 credits

                     Less than Half-Time = 3 or less credits


Summer Term

M.A.   Full-Time = 6 or more credits

                     Half-Time = 3-5 credits

                     Less than Half-Time = 2 or less credits


Graduate Admission for Pacific Oaks B.A. students (second Degree)

Pacific Oaks B.A. students applying for a Pacific Oaks Master’s degree must have completed their B.A. degree or be fully admitted to the B.A. degree program, have applied for graduation through the Registrar and be enrolled in their final semester.


International Student Admission

Based on U.S. Homeland Security regulations, international students must be enrolled full-time at the Pasadena location, and therefore are not eligible for admissions to the Distance Learning program.

International applicants must have non-U.S. transcripts evaluated by a NACES ( evaluation agency. Please contact each individual agency for details on how to obtain an order form; the applicant must pay fees. The evaluation should include the following information:

(1) Detailed Report (course-by-course evaluation)

(2) U.S. Degree equivalency

(3) U.S. GPA equivalency

All international applicants for whom English is a second language, with the exception of applicants who have an undergraduate degree from an English language university, must take the international Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and have the scores sent directly to the Admissions Office. A score of 550 or above on paper-based TOEFL (80 IBT) is required for admissions. A score of 6.5 International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or higher is acceptable. Scores may be no more than two years old.   All international applicants must have an admission interview in person or by phone prior to admission. The Admissions Office will contact applicants regarding the interview when the applicant’s file is complete. International students who are requesting to transfer from another U.S. institution must submit a letter from the international student advisor stating the student is in good standing with the institution.

Applicants must submit an International Student Financial Statement and supporting documents in addition to the Admissions Application. Please consult with the Admissions Office for minimum financial requirements. International applicants must meet application deadlines. International students are not eligible for institutional financial aid.

When an international student is admitted, a letter of admission is sent to the student. Once the Admissions Office receives the $100 commitment deposit, the I-20 is then issued. The student must take the admission letter and I-20 to the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate in order to receive an international student visa. This should be done as soon as possible to ensure entrance to the U.S. in time to matriculate for the student’s desired term. All international students are subject to federal government regulations.


Admission to Teacher Education Program 

Upon application to the Teacher Education Program, students choose whether they want the Education Specialist Credential (Mild/Moderate) Level I or Level II or the Preliminary Multiple Subject English Learner (MSEL) Teaching Credential.

Applicants can be admitted to any of the Teacher Education programs only after the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST or CSET) is passed. Until then, applicants are admitted to degree programs only.

Note: Applicants with a California B.A. degree in Education may not be admitted to a credential program by California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) regulations.

Admission to the Professional Level II Education Specialist Credential requires an interview with a Special Education advisor. The SB57 Early Completion option is now available.


Admission to the Intern Program (MSEL or SPED)

To be admitted as an Intern, candidates must have the following requirements met upon admission:

  • An earned B.A.
  • CBEST passed
  • CSET passed
  • Subsequent recommendation for an Intern Credential requires a Certificate of Clearance, U.S. Constitution competency and an offer of employment.


Admission to the MFT Program

As part of the admission process, an admission interview will be scheduled with MFT faculty. Students are provisionally admitted to the program with a review for full admissions following the completion of 18 credits. Admission to the MFT degree program is for the Fall and Spring semesters only. 

Students are allowed to petition for up to 15 credits of course work completed at another institution.


Admission to the Post-Graduate Certificate Program 

To apply for admission to the Post-Graduate Certificate Program, applicants must hold a Master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and work in the area of human services. Admission is granted based upon the applicant’s development of an individual plan to meet the areas of competency and to meet her/his own individual interests. 

Post-Graduate Certificate Human Development (HD) available in Pasadena or the Hybrid option

  • Advanced Study in Human Development,
  • Advanced Study in Early Childhood Education,
  • Advanced Study in Bicultural Development,
  • Advanced Study in Leadership in Education & Human Services
  • Advanced Study in Social and Human Services

The certificate program is offered by Pacific Oaks Human Development department as an opportunity for persons who already have a master’s degree - usually in another field - to deepen their understanding of development and early childhood education. The post-graduate certificate has considerable flexibility in acknowledging competences already gained and responding to the individual’s current specialized needs. It is planned with the faculty advisor in the context of the areas of competence that structure Pacific Oaks MA program - Development, Diversity, Communication, Implementation (theory into practice), fieldwork. Completion requires 15 Pacific Oaks credits. The program is available online as well as face-to-face.


Matriculation Policies

Students admitted/readmitted for Summer 2010, Fall 2010, Spring 2011, and Summer 2011 will be governed by this catalog.


Non-matriculating Student Status

College classes may be taken on a space available basis. Apply as a non-matriculating student by contacting the Admissions Office at (626) 397- 1349 or (800) 684-0900. Applicants must be high school graduates or have a GED.


Applicant Notification

Applicants will be notified of an admissions decision by mail (electronic or hard copy) and/or by phone approximately 2-3 weeks after a completed application is submitted.



Students applying for readmission (those not enrolled for 1 or more years) must complete all current program requirements and register for a minimum of 6 credits upon re-admission.



Students must be enrolled or on official Leave of Absence to maintain “student status”. Students not enrolled for less than one year or not on official Leave of Absence will be required to apply for Re-Entry to return to school. Re-Entry forms may be obtained from the Registrar’s Office. A $30 Re-Entry Fee must be submitted with the Re-Entry Form.

Students who take a leave of absence to perform military service will re-enter with the same academic status they attained prior to their military service leave provided their cumulative absence for such service does not exceed five years.


Reapplication for Admission after Denial Decision

Applicants who previously applied to Pacific Oaks and were not accepted may reapply to a future semester up to one year after the original application. For reconsideration, applicants must submit an updated application form and new information (i.e., new recommendation letter, new entrance exam scores, additional course- work, evidence of improved writing skills, etc.). Reconsideration of applications without additional information will not be conducted.


Catalog Navigation