Established in 1950, the college now called California Baptist University opened as the California Baptist College. Also called CBU, its first class of incoming freshmen included just 120 students. As enrollment grew, the college needed more space and moved to the city of Riverside to construct a new campus. This campus continued growing over the years as the college added new programs that gave students the chance to study business, religion, education and numerous other subjects. It also established its own College of Music and a College of Education that helped graduates meet the requirements necessary for obtaining a California teaching license.

CBU holds an International Service Project program every year. Also known as its ISP program, it allows students to spend three months working in another country. There is typically a ratio of no more than 10 students for each professor working on that trip. Students can do ministry work that teaches locals living in that country about their religious beliefs, but many students do on missionary work and teach English to foreign citizens. CBU now has an enrollment of around 9,000 students and offers graduate programs for students who have a bachelor’s degree.

California Baptist University Accreditation Details

Though CBU earned approval from California for its degree programs in its early days, it took much longer before it obtained regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). With WASC accreditation, the university can offer degrees to all students who complete the requirements of one of its degree programs, but this type of accreditation also gives the university the right to use federal funds and let students apply for federal grant and loan money.

The university also has specialized accreditation for six of its programs from four different professional organizations. Its programs in civil engineering, electrical and computer engineering and mechanical engineering all have accreditation from the Accreditation Board for Engineering & Technology, Inc. (ABET), while the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) granted the university accreditation for its business program. CBU also has accreditation from the National Association of Music for its music program and from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education for its nursing program. This type of accreditation ensures that graduates meet the standards and regulations for taking the national licensing exam and for getting a nursing license.

California Baptist University Application Requirements

CBU requires just five things from prospective students applying for one of its undergrad programs. You need an official test score on either the ACT or SAT that comes directly from that testing board and an official transcript from your high school. This transcript must clearly show your class ranking, contain a list of the classes that you took in high school and show your cumulative grade point average. You also need to write a short essay of no more than five paragraphs that explains what you want to get out of the university. There is also an online application as well as a $45 application fee. CBU looks for students who completed college prep work in high school, including courses in English, advanced math and science and social studies.

The requirements for prospective graduate students will vary between programs. All grad students must complete the online application, pay the $45 application fee and submit official college transcripts. You’ll also need to include an email address and phone number for multiple references and write a short essay on why you picked CBU for graduate school. Some programs may ask for a sample of your past research work, your resume, an official GRE score or a score from a similar test and/or a short interview that you can do in person or over the phone.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Undergrad tuition at CBU is just over $1,100 per unit, but full-time students can take 13 to 18 units and pay a flat fee of just under $15,000. If you take credits beyond 18 units, you’ll pay the standard rate for all those credits. The cost for graduate students ranges from around $590 per credit for most programs up to a maximum of $833 per credit for most of its engineering programs. To help keep costs down, CBU offers a discounted rate for online students. You’ll pay around $550 per unit as an online undergrad and up to $828 per unit for graduate classes. Some graduate courses cost even less.

Even if you take all your classes online, CBU recommends that you file the FAFSA to see if you qualify for any financial aid from the government. Undergrads usually receive more grants and loan types, but graduate students can get loans and grants worth more money. Online students can also request information to apply for scholarships available through CBU. As an online student, you can also apply for private student loans and find out if your parents qualify for federal PLUS loans.

Online Degrees Available

One of the online programs open to undergrads is a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies. It includes courses like language structure and acquisition, world geography, children’s literature, foundations of Christian thought and contemporary health issues. The university designed this program for students interested in multiple disciplines. Its BS in Criminal Justice is a good option for students who want to work in probation and corrections as well as other areas of the legal system. You’ll take courses on the state, local and federal government as well as classes on emergency management, constitutional law, terrorism and information management. This program can prepare you for working in government agencies like the Department of Homeland Security too.

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As a grad student, you might enroll in a program like its MS in Counseling Psychology or its Master of Business Administration (MBA) in General Management. The counseling psychology program is available as a completely online program or as a hybrid program that requires you spend some time on campus. Required courses in this program include marriage and family therapy, human growth and development, counseling techniques, human sexuality and child abuse and neglect. MBA students will take classes on managerial ethics, foundations of accounting, financial management, strategic management, marketing management and organizational behavior and leadership. California Baptist University also offers an MBA in Accounting program that includes more finance and accounting courses.