CSU Early Start Program at Humboldt State

For Summer 2020, Early Start at the California State University is being cancelled.  Students who would benefit from extra support in English and/or math instruction, will receive that support during the Fall 2020  semester.  


Early Start is designed to strengthen your math and/or English skills and help you transition to the learning environment at Humboldt State. Successful completion of Early Start Math can help you do well in the math class(es) needed to complete your degree. For more information about the math courses at HSU, as they relate to your major, see the HSU Math Department website. Early Start English is designed to improve your college-level writing skills and prepare you for writing assignments in all your HSU courses. It will also help you use (“directed self-placement”) to find the best general education English choice for you.

Fall 2020 Freshmen Admissions and Early Start Important Dates



What you need to do

May 1, 2020


Accept HSU offer of admission by May 1

May 4, 2020

Early Start Program Page is available and course registration begins

Early Start Program Page is available and course registration begins for students who will take Early Start Courses at the campus they will attend in the Fall. If you choose to participate in Early Start at a campus that is different from the one you attend in the Fall, you will get an email from that campus when you're able to register for Early Start course(s).

Register for courses before July 6

June 3, 2020


Sign up for freshman orientation by June 3

June 12, 2020

Priority Deadline

Choose a campus where you will enroll in Early Start and register for courses by completing your ESP Program Page.

July 6, 2020


Remember: Register for courses before July 6

July 6, 2020

HSU Early Start courses begin

August 15, 2020


Complete your ESP courses

CSU Early Start Details

  • The CSU requires Early Start for incoming freshmen who, by multiple measures such as test scores, overall GPA, course grades in English and Math, will likely benefit from additional support the summer before your freshman year. Students will also have a combination math course in the fall that provides support in transitioning to a college learning environment.
  • The program takes place the summer before the freshman year.
  • Early Start Math and English courses are offered by every CSU campus (online options available).
  • Financial aid will be available for those who demonstrate need (see below for details).
  • Students required to take both Math and English will be asked to take only Early Start Math for the summer 2020 (taking English as well is optional).
  • For more information go to: CSU Success

Early Start Courses at HSU

You are encouraged to complete your Early Start courses at HSU if at all possible. This will give you an opportunity to learn about HSU and will provide the smoothest transition to your fall English or math instruction. 

ESPM 100: Early Start Math (2 units)
A 2-unit online course in which students work on essential math skills, learn strategies for success in college-level mathematics, become familiar with the mathematics curriculum at HSU, and use a web-based assessment and learning program to help prepare for college-level mathematics courses. The course culminates with a final assessment that can be used to place HSU students into an appropriate math course in their first semester at HSU. This final assessment may be used to increase a student’s Mathematics Enrollment Category at HSU so that students may complete their mathematics requirements faster. Completion of ESPM 100 will satisfy the CSU Early Start requirement.
Four-week course: July 6, 2020 through July 31, 2020

Engl 180: Early Start Writing (1 unit)
English 180 is a one-unit online course to help students designated for Early Start to prepare for English 102/104 and English 104 at HSU.  Students will explore and write about concepts such as literacy and writing development and examine typical writing assignments in college.  Final assessment includes a student-designed writing portfolio.  Completion of English 180 satisfies the Early Start requirement.
Four-week course: July 6, 2020 through July 31, 2020

Who must participate in the Early Start Program?

Please check your Early Start Program Page for your Early Start Status for Math and English

Incoming freshmen who are International students and residents of other states.

How much will it cost? 

Early Start Programs offered at any of the CSU campuses will have a common fee. The current fee estimate is $191 per unit and is subject to change based on approved fee increases.

The additional cost for the web-based computer program used in Early Start Math is $32 for a six-week subscription. Neither of HSU’s Early Start courses requires you to purchase a textbook.

California residents who apply for financial aid and have an Estimated Family Contribution of $5,500 or less will be eligible for a waiver of the per-unit fee.

Where can I get more information?