Are You A California Resident or Nonresident?

This information will help you determine if you are a California resident for purposes of attending a California community college.

Residents of California are entitled to attend a community college by paying the community college enrollment fee. California residents pay $46 per unit.

Nonresident tuition is currently $331 per unit. This fee is in addition to the enrollment and health fees, for students who are not residents of California for tuition purposes. 

To qualify as a California resident you must verify physical presence in California and intent to become a resident one year prior to the residency determination date (the day before classes begin for a new term). The one-year period begins when you are not only present in California, but also have demonstrated clear intent to become a resident of California.

The burden of proof is on the student to verify both physical presence in California and intent to make California your residence. No single document is controlling or decisive.

Please bring ALL documents necessary to establish residency to the Residency Office.

For further information about Residency, please refer to our District Website.

Click here, or the link below to learn more about Dreamers, DACA and AB540.

Dreamers Welcome Link


Residency Determination Dates:

  • Fall 2023: August 20, 2023
  • Spring 2024: January 28, 2024

Primary Evidence Documents For Intent:

  • California State and Federal tax return with W-2 forms (required)
  • California automobile registration
  • California driver's license and /or California ID card
  • California voter registration
  • Military personnel: Active Duty

Primary Evidence Documents (as applicable) For Physical Presence:

  • Bank account statements
  • California license for professional practice/membership in California organizations
  • Petition for divorce in California
  • Utility bills
  • Proof of employment (pay stubs)
  • Rental agreement
  • DD-214 form
  • Verification of public assistance

Students Who Have Done Any of the Following are Nonresidents for Tuition Purposes:

  • Voter registration in another state
  • Petitioner for divorce in another state
  • Attend an out-of-state institution as a resident of that state
  • Declare non-residency for State income tax purposes
  • Possess a driver's license and/or vehicle registration in another state
  • Residing in the U.S. with certain visas (see Residency staff for more information)
  • There are special residency rules which apply to specific circumstances. Active duty military attend at resident rate and spouses/dependents may be eligible for waivers. Please consult with the residency office for more information.

Residency Determination

  • Final determination of residency will be made by the college at the time of admission or readmission
  • Evidence will be required to prove physical presence in California and intent to make California the legal residence
  • Residence determination shall be made as of the day before the first day of the semester of application
  • All documents must be submitted in a timely manner for residency determination

Nonresident Tuition Exemptions

Education Code section 68075.6 grants an exemption to nonresident tuition for Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) holders and refugee students who settled in California after entering the United States.  This exemption is granted for one year from the date the student settled in California upon entering the United States.


This exemption applies to the following:

  • Iraqi citizens or nationals (and their spouses and children) who were employed by or on behalf of the U.S. Government in Iraq (Publ.L. No. 110-181, § 1244).
  • Afghan and Iraqi translators (and their spouses and children) who worked directly with the United States Armed Forces (Publ.L. No. 109-163, § 1059).
  • Afghanistan nationals who were employed by or on behalf of the U.S. Government or in the International Security Assistant Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan (Publ.L. No. 111-8, § 602).
  • Refugee students admitted to the United States under Section 1157 of Title 8 of the United States Code.

Please contact the college Residency Office for additional information:


This information has been extracted from California Education Code sections 68000 and after, and California Code of Regulations, Title 5, sections 54000–54072

For more information, please see our District Website


Student Email Resources

Students will receive a "" email account upon registration which allows them to:

  • Receive official emails from the San Diego Community College District
  • Use applications in the Microsoft 365 suite for Students such as Word, Excel and OneDrive with 1 TB storage

Your email will be the official form of communication for all campus business. Students are expected to check their official email address on a frequent and consistent basis in order to stay current with the College communications. The College recommends checking email daily since certain communication may be time critical (e.g. Class Waitlist activity.).  Please use the following to get link to get started:  

Student Email and Microsoft 365 | San Diego Community College District (










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