Pasadena City College, Home of the PCC Lancers


Frequently Asked Questions

Search FAQs For:

01. Admission

02. Registration

03. Assessment

04. Orientation

05. Counseling

06. Schedule & Classes

07. Fees & Tuition

08. Financial Aid

09. English as a Second Language (ESL)

10. International students (F-1 Visa)

11. Tutoring

12. Academic Information

01. Admission

1. How do I apply to the college?

  • New students who want to take courses at PCC must first apply for admission
  • F-1 Visa full time students do NOT apply online. Complete the application at the International Students website.  
  • Then watch for an email with the subject: "Admissions Notice" within the next 2 weeks. Read and save the notice. It contains important information you will need to register for your classes.
  • If you have completed your online application but did not receive your Admissions Notice:
    • It may take up to 2 weeks for your application to be processed and the notice to be emailed.
    • Make sure this notice was not filtered in your spam mail or in your deleted folder.
    • If you do not have this email you will need to come in to the Admissions Office in L113

2. I attended PCC a few years back and then stopped attending. Do I need to reapply to the college? Can I access LancerPoint?

If you skipped a winter or summer term only, you are still considered a continuing student and do not need to reapply to the college.
If you skipped a spring or fall semester, you must reapply. You will not see LancerPoint information until you reapply.
If you applied but did not attend classes, you must reapply as well.

02. Registration

1. What are the steps to register?

  1. Complete the Orientation to College online
  2. Take the Placement Tests: walk-in and appointment info at the Assessment Office in D-205
  3. Attend a group counseling session walk-in and appointment. For info, call: 626-585-7251
  4. Register for classes online on your registration priority date at LancerPoint

2. How to register a class in LancerPoint? (replacing the old Lancer Link)

  1. LancerPoint Username:
  2. Register Online: After activating your account, review your student information and registration assignment:
    a) Login to LancerPoint by selecting the #2 button at
    b) Select the Student tab
    c) Select Registration
    d) Select Registration Status
    e) Return to on your designated registration date and time (or anytime afterward)

    Create a tentative class schedule and check for course prerequisites to make sure you have satisfied the requirements (please go to Prerequisites Office in L103 to clear prerequisites prior to registration).
  3. Pay Your Fees: For fee information please visit

3. Can I audit/seat in the class without being enrolled?

It is the policy of the Pasadena Area Community College District to allow students to audit courses when space is available in course sections and students seeking to enroll for credit are not displaced.
Please refer to:

4. What happens if you're placed on a class waiting list during the registration process?

Watch for an email with the subject: “PCC Class Enrollment”, use the add-code right the way. Because there is no guarantee that a space will be available for very long, it is to your responsibility to enroll as soon as possible. If space opens up later on, you will be notified again about the opportunity to add. After using the add-code we highly recommend that you pay at the end of your registration with your credit card so you do not have to worry about payment.

5. How do I find out if I have gotten into a class that I am on the waitlist for?

If you receive an email at your account (located on the homepage of your LancerPoint account) informing you that you are in the waitlist class, you have 48 hours to add it. If you do not respond to the email, the spot will go to the next person on the waitlist.
If you do not receive an email informing you that you are in the class, you must get an add code from the instructor on the first day of class.

6. What do the error messages cohort restriction and permission mean when I try to add a course?

Courses with a Cohort Restriction error message are reserved for students in special programs.
A course that requires permisssion is part of special program. The course must be approved by either the department office or a counselor.

03. Assessment

1. Where is the assessment office?

Assessment office is located on the second floor in Building D Room 205, and the telephone number is 626-585-7272.

2. Can I just take any ESL class without taking an ESL placement test?

No, before you try to register for an ESL class, students are required to take an ESL placement test to register at the appropriate level that they placed.

3. How do I take an ESL placement?

Print the Confirmation Page and Bring it to your Testing Appointment.

  • Appointments can be scheduled four weeks in advance. Appointments must be scheduled at least 2 days in advance, but no more than 35 days in advance from the current date.
  • Exam Result Information:  The English, ESL and math exam results will be provided to you during your group counseling session during these months.  First-Time College Students will need to attend this session to receive their exam results. 

4. Who should take the ESL placement test?

The ESL assessment test is designed to measure English skills for students whose first language is NOT English. Students are encouraged to take the ESL assessment test if English is their second language and if they are not fluent in English. If your background in English is similar to one or more of the following descriptions, you should take the ESL assessment test and not the English assessment test.

  • You took ESL classes in your senior year of high school. 
  • You have difficulty communicating in English and/or completing forms in English.
  • You wish to enroll in ESL courses at PCC.

The ESL assessment test is computerized. There is no time limit for the test. Typically, students are able to complete the test in one hour. It consists of adaptive multiple-choice questions. Questions are chosen for you on the basis of your answers to previous questions. Since this is an adaptive test, you cannot skip questions in the exam or go back to previous responses. You must answer every question. If you do not know the answer to a question, try to eliminate one or more of the choices, then pick one of the remaining choices.

6. What is the difference between the English placement test and the ESL placement test?

The difference between an English placement test and an ESL placement test is that English placement test is design for English native speakers, whereas ESL placement test is targeted for English as a Second Language students (ESL).

7. English is my second language, but I took an English placement test. What should I do in order to take ESL classes?

You will need to come in to the Assessment Office in D204, ask for to take an ESL placement test.

8. Can I retaken the ESL placement test?

  •  The placement exams can be retaken after eight weeks and only once annually.
  • Once you begin a course sequence and receive a grade in the course you cannot take the exam to skip to a higher course.

9. Can I take a foreign language assessment at the assessment office?

Students have to contact the Languages Division at: (626) 585-3187 for more information.

05. Counseling

1. As a future student, could I see a counselor before applying to the college?

No, you must apply and be accepted at PCC to see a counselor.

2. This would be my first semester studying at PCC, do I need to meet with a counselor before I register for my classes?

New students who have never attended college need to attend a new student group counseling session approximately two (2) weeks prior to your registration date.  Group counseling appointments can be made at any time. 

Go to the Counseling desk at L-104 with: 

  1. Assessment results
  2. online orientation quiz results
  3. Permit to Register
  4. Picture ID.

*New students who have attended college and taken an English and Math class do not need to assess again.  Instead, bring copies of previous college transcripts (official or unofficial) to counseling (L104). 

2. What does “closed” mean?

When a class is closed, that means that the class is full and that there are 7 students on the waiting list.

3. Can I still add a class that is “closed”?

Students can still go to the class and try to add. However, the probabilities are very low to get into the class since there are 7 students ahead of you. Note: the instructor will not add more than the class limit.

3. How can I be put on the waiting list?

Students can get on the waiting list (if it is not closed) by adding the class and clicking on the waiting list box.

4. I want learn a foreign language for my own personal development, but when I try to register for the class, it is always closed. What should I do?

We recommend taking a foreign language class at our extended learning program. This is the website: Office: D208. Phone: (626) 585-7608
The languages that we offer are: Chinese (Mandarin), French, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish.

5. What is a prerequisite?

A condition of enrollment, such as satisfactory completion of another course (with a grade of A,B,C, or CR) that must be met BEFORE a student can register for a course.

6. What is a corequisite?

A course in which a student is required to enroll at the same time he or she is enrolled in another course.

07. Fees & Tuition

1. What is the tuition per class for a California resident?

The tuition per unit is approximately $46. If your class has 4 units, then it would be $46x 4= $184 approximately.

2. I just registered for my classes, when do I have to pay?

Students may pay in full before they can register for the next session or to order transcripts and records.
We highly recommend that you pay at the end of your registration with your credit card so you do not have to worry about a hold.
If you need to pay by cash or check, you can do so at the Cashier window in L building. 
For international students, please check with the International Student Center for your payment policy.

08. Financial Aid

1. I have financial aid, do I have pay any fees for my classes?

Students with financial aid still need to pay: student activity fee, student representation, and health fees.

09. English as a Second Language (ESL)

1. Do you offer ESL courses/classes?

Yes, we do offer ESL courses/classes at Pasadena City College (main campus) and at the Community Education Center (annex campus).

2. What is the difference between Pasadena City College (main campus) and the Community Education Center (annex campus)?

Pasadena City College (main campus) offers classes with credit (to transfer to another university) and they charge a fee per unit. The CEC (annex campus) offers classes without credit and they are free.
Please refer:

3. If I want to take ESL courses/classes where should I take it, at Pasadena City College (main campus) or at the CEC (annex campus)?

Both campuses offer ESL courses/classes. At Pasadena City College (main campus) you would have to get admitted to the college, have an ESL placement test, and register and pay online for the classes at a particular semester (Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall). At the Community Education Center (CEC) you would have get admitted to the CEC, take a placement test at the CEC, and there fewer restrictions about starting time of semester. You will need to come in to the CEC at 3005 E. Foothill Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91107 or call 626-585-3026 to get more information. In the meantime, please visit for more information.

4. What does CEC stand for? What is the address of CEC?

  • CEC stand for Community Education Center
  • CEC is located at: 3035 E. Foothill Blvd. Pasadena 91107

5. Does PCC have an Intensive English Language Acquisition program?

PCC does not offer an Intensive English Language Acquisition program for students prior to enrolling in credit courses. All students must attain a certain level of English proficiency before coming to PCC. PCC does offer ESL classes for students to improve their academic language skills while taking other credit courses. Students are placed in these classes according to their results on a placement test.

6. Can I take GE (general education) courses while I am taking ESL classes?

Students are allowed to take any GE courses while taking ESL classes. However, we strongly recommend completing as many ESL classes before you take a GE class.

7. What does an ESL block mean?

An ESL block means a combination of 3 classes together.

8. Can I just take one or two classes from the ESL block?

No, students have to take all of the classes in the block; otherwise students will be drop from those classes.

9. What is the advantage of the ESL block?

The advantage of the ESL block is that these grouped classes offer an opportunity for college-level ESL students to develop and practice skills in reading, writing, grammar, listening, and speaking.

10. What does an ESL pair mean?

An ESL pair means a combination of 2 classes together.

11. What does an ESL cohort mean?

An ESL cohort means a combination of 3 classes or more together.

12. What does “Instr Aprv Reqd“ mean when the classes are offered under the Languages Division?

Instr Aprv Reqd stands for instructor approval required, which means those classes are reserved for a particular group. After we enrolled those students, those classes will be open for the general public.

10. International students (F-1 Visa)

1. Do you offer a full time ESL program that issues F-1 visa with an I-20?

We do not have an extensive ESL program. All students must meet the English proficiency requirement as listed on the website in order to be admitted. However, if a student places in the lowest level of ESL, they will be registered in the lowest ESL sequence. It is not uncommon for some students to only be enrolled in ESL courses for the first year. The ISC does not advertise this though because all students should be at proficient levels. 

2. I have an F-1 Visa and my spouse has an F-2 Visa. Could my spouse enroll in your ESL program?

Those on an F-2 visa are not eligible to enroll in any classes. If they are interested in studying at PCC they would have to apply as a student and do a change of visa status from an F-2 to F-1. 

4. As an International student, do I need to take the TOEFL test to get admitted to the college?

The TOEFL is one of the ways a student can show they are proficient in English. We do accept other forms of proving English proficiency, this is listed in the guidelines.
Please click here for more information:

5. Is it possible to study without a visa if I am from another country?

 It is required that all students have a student visa if they are from another country.  

6. As an International student, is it possible to study for only three (3) months?

We admit students for the program length, however if a student is only at PCC and then decides to leave we will not hold them against their wishes.

7. Is it possible to pay a class per month?

We recommed that you pay with your credit or debit card immediately after you register. A minimum of $516 is required in order to secure your classes. You are required to pay in full before you can register for the following semester.

8. What are the estimated total expenses for one academic year for an International Student?

Estimated expenses per school year (US dollars) total $17,500 (Prices are subject to change).

The American government requires all International Students to complete 12 units each Fall and Spring semester. Winter Intersession and Summer sessions are optional.  The total amount for 12 units would be approximately $3,564 per semester (16 weeks) including medical insurance.

Please click here for more information:

11. Tutoring

1. Where are the ESL tutors located? And do I have to pay a fee?

ESL tutors are located at the ESL Center (D-306), and ESL students can see them for free.

2. If I am not taking an ESL class, could I see an ESL tutor?

No, only currently enrolled ESL students at PCC can see a tutor.

4. Are there any foreign language tutors available?

Yes, there are foreign language tutors at the LAC (Learning Assistance Center) located at: D-300. Please refer to their website for more information:

12. Academic Information

1. How many times can a course be repeated?

A course may be repeated when student receives a grade of D, F, or NP. After successful completion of repeated course with grades A, B, C, or P, the original course and grade will automatically be disregared from cumulative GPA. Students wising to take a course for the fourth time where three previous grades were earned (W, D, F, or P) will need to file a petition. This petition can be obtained online at

2. How many times can a course designated as repeatable for credit be repeated?

A course that in repeatable for credit can be repeated as many times as allowable unit maximum credit is earned.


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