Merced College offers the first two years of university study for a bachelor’s degree. Our international students tell us they enjoy their experience for numerous reasons. Among the reasons are that Merced College offers over eighty Associate Degree Programs, more than sixty certificate programs, transfer agreements and counseling to prepare you for your further studies, Intensive English Program (MCELI) and the wide variety of athletic resources.

There are many advantages of studying at Merced College.

  1. Unique Tri-College Center on campus includes University of California, Merced, California State University, Stanislaus and Merced College.
  2. Quiet, peaceful city (population 80,000) near San Francisco and Yosemite National Park
  3. Accredited with recognized academic excellence (ranks second among 107 California two year colleges on transfer grades)
  4. First two years of university work for Associate Degrees and/or transfer to Bachelor degree programs
  5. Transfer agreements with top universities  (UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Merced, UC Riverside, UC San Diego, UC Santa Barbara, UC Santa Cruz, CSU Monterey Bay)
  6. Intensive ESL (Merced College English Language Institute) for below 450 Pbt/45 iBT TOEFL scores
  7. Intensive Certificate programs: Computers in Business, Medical Assistant, International Trade and 54 others
  8. Low tuition & Low living cost
  9. Smaller class size & Friendly professors
  10. Extensive sports complex: stadium, Olympic sized pool, 14 tennis courts, etc.
  11. Beautiful campus (269 acres – 120 hectares. 37 buildings)
  12. Homestay program is available
  13. Free e-mail and fax
  14. Free tutoring services
  15. Free specialized assistance from program officer
  16. Counselors available for international students
  17. Free non-credit classes for students registered full-time
  18. Extensive computer labs
  19. California offers a variety of spectacular local outings in close proximity to the city of Merced.

Merced College English Language Institute

We welcome students who need to strengthen their English language skills.

International Club

With its culturally diverse body of members, the International Club is a fun place to be.

Frequently Asked Questions

The deadlines are as follow:

Application Deadlines
Fall Semester June 15th
Spring Semester November 15th
Summer Semester April 15th

Our application can be downloaded from our applications page.

If you are having trouble downloading the application, please e-mail us at [email protected]

The cost is for one year, not including summer is approximately $22,000**. This includes one year of health insurance, Books and supplies estimated at $675, and room and board ($14400). The cost for room and board will vary depending on whether the student participates in the Homestay Program, and lives independently or with roommates.

Please see our estimated fees & expenses page.

**Fees are subject to changes without notice. 2023-2024 current non-resident tuition fees are $336 per unit.

Merced College does not have scholarships for new students. However, we do offer a competitive tuition waiver scholarships for students who have completed successfully at least one academic semester.

You can look at the Merced College catalog online.

If you are interested in the housing/homestay program, please view information about Homestay.

  • TOEFL Paper-based Test: 450 / Internet Based Test: 45 to 46 or higher
  • IELTS: 5 or higher
  • We also accept Eiken: 2A or higher

General Information about Merced College

  • School type: Community/two year college
  • Enrollment: 11,000 full time students
  • Campus Size: 267 acres
  • Term Type: Spring and Fall Semesters with Summer Terms
  • Degrees Offered: Associate Degree
  • Offers 82 Assosicate degree majors
  • Olympic sized pool, gym, football stadium and tennis courts
  • Popular Majors to international students: Business Administration, Kinesiology, Liberal Arts, ,Social Behavior, Psychology, etc.
  • Merced is known for its low cost of living, proximity to San Francisco, Monterey and Fresno and is home to the new UC Merced.