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California Government Exam



Title 5, California Code of Regulations, Article 5, Section 40404 requires that all students demonstrate an understanding of American history, the United States Constitution, and California state and local government. According to the General Catalog, a student may elect to complete the California state and local government portion of the American Institutions requirement by either:

1. Taking the California Government examination available through the Testing Services office, OR

2. Completing one of the SDSU courses listed in the appropriate section of the American Institutions Requirement section of the General Catalog.


General exam information: The California Government Exam is composed of 40 multiple-choice questions and five identification items in which the examinee must define and explain in one paragraph the significance of a term related to California governance. Each multiple choice item is worth two points, and each identification item is worth four points. A score of 60 or more will be necessary to pass. The assessment is 60 minutes in length, and there is no penalty for guessing.

Recommended Study Guide: David G. Lawrence, California: The Politics of Diversity, 8th edition, Thomson Wadsworth, 2015.

Test information, fees, and exam dates and times are subject to change without notice.

Test Date Time* Reporting Location Registration Deadline Scores Released by**
Saturday, September 9, 2017
10:30 a.m.
GMCS 333
September 4, 2017
September 24, 2017
Saturday, September 30, 2017
10:30 a.m.
GMCS 333
September 25, 2017
October 15, 2017
Saturday, October 14, 2017
10:30 a.m.
GMCS 333
October 9, 2017
October 29, 2017
Saturday, October 28, 2017
10:30 a.m.
GMCS 333
October 23, 2017
November 12, 2017
Saturday, December 2, 2017
10:30 a.m.
GMCS 333
November 27, 2017
December 17, 2017

*Sessions will be closed when testing capacity is reached regardless of registration deadline or posted times.

** Please note that some test results may not be available prior to the next scheduled test date, so plan your test date accordingly.


Fee information:
The exam fee is $20.00. Admission Tickets are non-refundable and may not be transferred to another individual.
Date/Time Transfer Policy:

To transfer to a different exam date, you must bring your Admission Ticket to Testing Services (SSW 2549) by 12:00 p.m. (noon) the business day prior to the exam date. Testing Services is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Online registration:
Or Mail-in registration:
Or In-person registration:
Come to SDSU Testing Services (SSW 2549), Monday - Friday, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. for instructions.
Print Admission Ticket:
You must bring a printed copy of your Admission Ticket to be admitted to your exam. Electronic copies are not acceptable. To print your Admission Ticket, click here
Students Requiring Accommodations:

Students requesting testing accommodations must follow these steps:

1. Register for a regularly-scheduled exam (see above)
2. Register with SDSU Student Disability Services (SDS), who will authorize appropriate accommodations for each test requested.
3. Once SDS has placed the appropriate accommodations on the Testing Services reservation system for the specific exam you are requesting, email SDSU Testing Services at with your name, Red ID number, exam(s) for which you have registered, date of exam(s), and a request for testing accommodations.
4. Once your request is approved, Testing Services will email reporting instructions for the exam. Please review the information carefully and bring a printed copy of the email as your Admission Ticket.
5. Accommodation requests must be received at least 2 weeks prior to the exam to ensure your accommodation(s) is available.


Directions & Parking Information: