Articulation is the process of evaluating courses to determine whether coursework completed at one institution (e.g., a community college) will meet the requirements at another institution (e.g., a university) for the purposes of admission, transferable units, general education or major preparation. It is this process that ensures that the classes you take at Merced Community College will be credited toward your bachelor's degree requirements when you enter a university.

Articulation agreements are formal, written, and published documents that describe which coursework from the “sending” institution is accepted as comparable to or acceptable in lieu of coursework at the “receiving” institution. Some articulation agreements are "course-to-course agreements", meaning that they show a specific course from one institution and the comparable specific course from another. Other articulation agreements are "major agreements", meaning that they show a group of courses that are acceptable to fulfill an entire set of requirements for major preparation.

There are two resources you can use to get information about all articulation agreements between public higher education institutions in California, ASSIST and CAN, as described below.


All "segments" of the public higher education system in California – the California Community Colleges, the California State University, and the University of California – have agreed to have a single repository for articulation agreements between the community colleges and the universities. That repository is the ASSIST Web site, which is accessible to the public.

CAN System

The CAN (California Articulation Numbering) System is a limited, statewide system of common course numbering for lower-division (freshman and sophomore) courses offered in California higher education. The primary participants in CAN are the California Community Colleges and the California State University.

Courses with CAN numbers or "designators" are accepted for transfer by any participating institution as being comparable to their course with the same CAN designator. (For example, Merced College's ENGL 1A also has the CAN designator CAN ENGL 2 and will transfer to Sonoma State University as comparable to their ENGL 101, which also bears the CAN designator CAN ENGL 2.) The Merced College Catalog and Schedule of Classes include the CAN designator in the course description for all courses that are accepted for the CAN System. Other institutions may list their CAN courses separately in their catalog.

If at any time you need assistance with accessing or interpreting the information in ASSIST and/or CAN, contact your Merced College counselor.

PRIVATE UNIVERSITIES (Both in California and Out-of-State)

For private institutions, each university has it's own agreement with Merced College regarding articulation. Here are the current agreements Merced College has:

National University