Here are some of the questions that people have asked about the online registration for OLLI.


Why is OLLI going to online registration?

CSUF has specified that OLLI starts using online registration. There are several advantages to using online registration to OLLI members and to CSUF.

OLLI members will notice the following:

  • There are fewer forms to fill out. You no longer have to put the same information into several different forms. The information that you enter this year will be saved. CSUF does not save your credit card information. In future years, you will only need to update anything that has changed.
  • For those people that have paid by credit card, you no longer have to write your card information onto a paper form. This greatly reduces the chance that your credit card information could fall into the wrong hands.
  • For those that have paid by check, you no longer have to worry about your check being lost or stolen. Online payment greatly reduces the chances of your checking account and routing numbers being stolen.
  • You can do your registration at home on your computer or mobile device. (For those that do not have access to the Internet or who just want help with the registration process, there will be computers and assistance provided at OLLI.)

For CSUF, there are advantages to online registration.

  • Online registration removes much of the handling of paperwork that was involved in the multiple forms. Previously, all of the information in the OLLI registration paperwork had to be entered, by hand, into the CSUF computer systems.
  • By eliminating the handling of paperwork, you no longer have to worry about someone making a mistake while copying your information. You are more likely to get mail and emails from OLLI. Likewise, there are no concerns about not being able to read someone’s handwriting.
  • If there are no paper forms for credit cards or paper checks then you do not have to worry about them being stolen. Also, the OLLI office and CSUF do not have to worry about anyone being injured in a robbery.


How  do I register online for OLLI?

You can register for OLLI from your home using your computer, smartphone, or tablet. Or you can register at OLLI (see the next question).

As part of the online registration process, returning OLLI members will need to have a 'CSUF student account'. Every other student on CSUF's campus has a student account. CSUF wants ot use the same mechanism for for OLLI members.  Click here for information on creating a CSUF student account. If you would like assistance then please see the next question.

To register, go to and follow the instructions. You will need:

  • Your CSUF student account username and password. Click here for information on creating a CSUF student account.
  • Your payment information, credit card information or electronic check information.
  • A personal email address, if you do do not have an email address then come and see us (see the next question).
  • Emergency contact information: Name, phone number, and address.

There are a few ‘quirks’ to the payment system. (It is new. We are still working out the kinks.)

  • The date of birth for some OLLI members is wrong in the CSUF records. The lavender sheet with your CWID may list two different dates of birth (DOB). If your correct DOB does not work, try the other DOB listed on the sheet.
  • Your PIN needs to have 6 digits. If it does not have 6 digits, put zeros at the beginning to make a total of 6 digits. (Please don't ask why we did not print them there, We do not like having to admit that we made a mistake.)

For help in the process see the next question.


Where  can I get assistance if I have any questions or if I need access to a computer?

This year, help with registration is being done by appointment. The available time slots for registration assistance will be posted around OLLI. To make an appointment  To make an appointment for Mondays through Fridays with one of the Registration Volunteers, send an email to:; or call 657-278-4012 or come to one of the scheduled Registration Assistance Labs and an appointment can be setup at that time.  However, there are no appointments required if you use the Open Lab on Fridays, 1:00 to 3:00 pm in RGC 20. However assistance, in the open labs, is provided on a first-come - first serve basis and they have been busy. Help will also be available during the OLLI Open House on August 12th however that is also expected to be busy.

Please bring the username and password for your CSUF student account.  If you do not remember this information, please request your CWID/PIN from the office and bring that with you. More information about CSUF student accounts, CWID, Pins, usernames, and passwords is given below.

Please be ready to pay for for your registration. (See the next item.)


How  can I pay for my registration? Can I still use a check? Can I use PayPal?

You can pay for your registration using either a credit or debit card, an electronic check, or a MasterPass account.

Paying with a credit card involves entering your card information in the designated portion of the online registration form. For those people who are worried about the safety of using a credit card online, see the next couple of questions.

You cannot use a paper check. However, you can use an ‘electronic check’. To use an electronic check, when you are asked to ‘Select Method of Payment’, choose ‘Enter new electronic check information.’ You will then be asked for your email address and checking or savings account information. (This is the routing and account numbers that are on the bottom of one of your checks.)

CSUF does not accept PayPal for payment.


Aren’t  online payments really dangerous?

When dealing with a reputable business, which is using a reputable payment processor, online payments are one of the safest forms of payments.

Many people worry about online payments but are unconcerned when they give their credit card to the staff in a restaurant. Using a credit card in a restaurant exposes you to several possible dangers:

  1. You hand your credit card to someone in a restaurant to pay your bill. They swipe your card but they can also make other purchases with your card. Or they can copy your information and use it to make purchases later.  (Note: In some places, restaurants are bringing the card scanner to the customer’s table to reduce these problems.)
  2. Someone may have installed a skimmer on the restaurant’s credit card scanner to collect the card information. For instance:
  3. Someone may have hacked into the restaurant’s computers. On a very large scale, this is what happened with the card information breach at Target when someone hacked into their in-store purchasing system.
  4. For thieves, hacking into the computer systems of payment processors and credit card issuers is a gold mine. It was a big problem in the early days of online transactions. However, these companies now expend a major effort to prevent this. The money that they lose is their own so they make sure that it does not happen.

Using your card to pay your OLLI registration online eliminates the first three of these dangers. CSUF does not actually have access to your credit card information. Instead, to process your payment, the OLLI website transfers you to a payment processing company called CashNet. CashNet processes your payment information and then returns a confirmation of the payment back to CSUF. CashNet is a Level 1 PCI compliant, which means they meet or exceed all security standards set forth by the credit card industry. CashNet is used by 22 of the 23 California State University campuses. CashNet does keep payment information to be able to process refunds. However, they keep your payment information encrypted so that it is not usable even if it were to be stolen.

Of course, it you are dealing with a non-reputable business, then online payments can be very dangerous. Please do not send your credit card or bank account information, etc., to the guy that sends you an email that says that he has $25 million and that he needs your help to smuggle it out of his country and he will let you keep $5 million if you help. There are also non-reputable businesses on the Internet that create websites simply to steal your card information. They often advertise amazingly low prices for goods and services. Be careful with whom you do business on the internet.


What  if I still don't want to use my personal credit card or debit card?

There are still a few options.

  • You can purchase prepaid credit cards for any amount. Prepaid credit cards are like store gift cards but can be used anywhere. These have the advantage that once the prepaid amount has been spent, no more funds can be drawn on that account. These generally have a $5 to $10 fee charged for their purchase. Get the ones that say Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, etc. Do not get a gift card that is specific to a business such as Target or Home Depot. The fee for the full year is $260. For the fall only, the fee is $150.
  • Many credit card companies will issue a ‘single use’ credit card number. These were popular in the early days of online payments. Check the web site for your credit card, to see if this option is available.
  • You can do an ‘electronic check’. This basically involves supplying your checking account information. I.e. writing a check without the paper check.


What  is a CWID and PIN and why do I need one?

CWID stands for “Campus Wide ID” or “Campus Wide Identification.” It is a unique number assigned to you. You are assigned this number if you are (or ever were) an OLLI member, student, faculty member or staff member at CSUF, or if you are (or ever were) a member of OLLI, or if you are (or ever have been) a volunteer in an official capacity for CSUF or any of the university affiliated programs, such as Tucker Wildlife Center.
PIN stands for Personal Identification Number. It is like a numeric password that is associated with your CWID to protect it from being used by anyone who does not have the PIN.

These numbers are used for the creation of CSUF student accounts. The CSUF student accounts are used to identify you to OLLI's online registration system. Student accounts are also used for various other things around CSUF like obtaining a library card.

The CWID and PIN are also used if you forget your username and password for your student account. 


Where do I obtain a CWID and PIN?

OLLI members, who do not know their CWID or PIN should go to the OLLI office (RGC 7) during normal business hours (8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.) and ask to be given their CWID and PIN.

What  if I might have created a CSUF student account, but can’t remember the username and/or the password?

If you think that you might have already created a CSUF student account but do not remember your username or password then go to and select the appropriate option.

If you do not remember your username, then you will need your campus wide ID (CWID) which you can obtain from the OLLI office.

If you remember your username but not your password then you will need to prove that you are you. Then you can reset your password. There are few options for proving that you are you. If you remember the answers to the security questions that you selected when you created your student account, then use that option. Or you can ask to be sent an email to your personal email account and then do what the email says. The third option is to get your CWID and PIN from the OLLI office and use that. If none of these works, then OLLI is providing assistance with registration. Ask us for help. If we cannot help you then the final option involves going to the Titan help desk in the Pollak Library. The Titan help desk will want some form of photo identification.


Will  other payments like fees for classes and trips also be done online?

Right now, only OLLI registration is being done online. Fees for trips and classes will still be paid at the OLLI office. However, in the long term, the answer is yes. CSUF definitely plans on doing away with the OLLI office directly handling money. How quickly this is going to happen is not yet known.


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