American River College


American River College (ARC) is a two-year community college that offers students the opportunity to earn certificates and associate degrees. Even though this institution serves individuals from various geographical areas, it largely serves the adult population of the 5-county Greater Sacramento district.


Information Summary

Ranks 118th in California and 1797th overall. See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list
Overall Score (about) 67.4
Total Cost On-Campus Attendance $2,958
Admission Success rate N/A
Student Ratio Students-to-Faculty 16 : 1
Retention (full-time / part-time) 71% / 53%
Enrollment Total (all students) 31,366


The school was first founded in 1955 as American River Junior College, situated on old Grant Technical College’s site. The institution moved to its present location in 1958, a 153 acre spot on old Cameron Ranch, occupying 8 recently constructed office complexes and the actual Cameron ranch house. At that time it became a branch of the Los Rios Community College. Los Rios is administered by a 7 member board of trustees elected by voters that reside within the district.

ARC enrolls approximately 35,000 students, both full time and part time. It is one of the biggest community colleges in the state of California.

Programs Offered

The course catalog offers more than thirty certificate programs and more than forty degree programs. Students can earn certificates or degrees in programs such as Behavioral and Social Sciences, English, Humanities, Computer Science and Information Technology, Fine and Applied Arts, Mathematics, and Technical Education.

Online Education

There are different kinds of online education: online, hybrid and web-enhanced.

Online Courses Online courses are offered over the Internet. Usually, content is presented to the students via web pages and class discussions employing a combination of e-mail, chat rooms, mailing lists, newsgroups or bulletin boards. All class meetings, coursework, lecture and assessments are done over the internet – except for orientation meetings or other in-person exams which will be determined by the lecturer.

Hybrid Courses Hybrid courses are taught online employing the same online-based tools and hybrid course activities like the online classes. A part of the course meeting time is conducted via the internet, and the other part is conducted in a conventional classroom manner.

Web-Enhanced Courses These particular courses are taught face-to-face for a hundred percent of the course meeting time, while classroom coursework and resources are enhanced with web-based activities. Instances are online testing, projects, materials and hand-outs or online discussions.


The college has published its very own literary journal for more than twenty years (since 1988), known as the American River Review. This publication has received nationwide recognition and has also won several national awards as well. The awards received include the Gold Crowns award from Columbia Scholastic Press Association and the Associated Collegiate Press’ National Pacemaker Award.


Accreditation is maintained through the Accrediting Commission for Community & Junior Colleges of the WASC (Western Association of Schools & Colleges). This accreditation agency is highly recognized by the United States Dept. of Education and the Commission on Recognition of Postsecondary Accreditation.

Most Popular Fields of Study


College entrance :: American River College
Davis hall :: American River College


Admissions are non-competitive. The admission process includes:

  • Completing an online application for admission from a computer that has internet connection. Computers and support personnel are available at the eServices center in the cafeteria building.
  • Please Note: Priority registration will be provided to the applicants who submit their applications to the institution’s admissions office before specified cut-off dates
  • Applicants will need to sit for the appropriate assessment exam(s). Applicants should call the assessment center in order to get additional information.
  • Applicants will also need to go through the orientation/counseling process. Orientation can be carried out online or in person, this will also be followed by a meeting with an academic counselor.
  • Non transfer applicants have the opportunity to enroll for vocational/technical courses, personal enrichment, or for continuing academic credit.

    Financial Aid

    The financial aid office offers assistance with filling out financial aid applications and explaining the prerequisites of the different programs. Financial aid options include loans, federal grants, fee waivers, scholarships, state grants, and work study programs.

    Student Financial Aid Details

    Ranks 4381st for the average student loan amount.
    Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in California.


    The college does not offer any housing. The activities office can provide students with information on available shared housing, roommates and rentals. There is an on-campus day care center for students with children.

    Student Enrollment Demographics


    Athletics programs exist for both male and female students. Students have the opportunity to take part in men’s and women’s basketball, cross country, soccer, water polo, track & field, swimming, tennis, and more. The school’s teams are known as the Beavers.


    Well-known alumni include:

  • Ward Connelly– UC’s former Regent & political activist
  • David Matthew Barnes – film maker, novelist, poet and playwright
  • Joan Lunden – Television personality/host
  • Lloyd Connelly – California State Assembly’s former member and California Superior Court judge
  • Anthony Swofford – Jarhead’s author
  • Wally Harger – United States House of Assembly Representatives member
  • Additional School Information

    The 1986 movie, Wisdom, starring Demi Moore and Emilio Estevez, was filmed on campus, in and around ARC’s Beaver Stadium.

    There are many recreational opportunities in the area around campus, including Sacramento’s Raging Waters, the California State Capitol Museum, and the Sacramento’s Discovery Museum: Science and Space Center & Challenger Learning Center.

    This website and its associated pages are not affiliated with, endorsed by, or sponsored by this school. has no official or unofficial affiliation with American River College.