University of Washington Policy Directory

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*Formerly part of the University Handbook
Student Governance and Policies

Scholastic Regulations

Chapter 115


1.  Course-Numbering System

University courses shall be numbered as follows:

  A. Lower-Division Courses

100 to 299, inclusive, normally for students in their freshman and sophomore years, or for those commencing a course of study that will culminate in advanced work.

  B. Upper-Division Courses

300 to 499, inclusive, representing more advanced work in any field, or special courses normally taken by juniors and seniors. Open to graduate students for credit in approved programs toward advanced degrees.

  C. Graduate Courses

500 and above, for courses designated for graduate students. Academic programs cannot require graduate courses in undergraduate programs in the General Catalog, but departments may allow undergraduate students to substitute graduate courses for required undergraduate courses.

  D. Precollege and Make-Up Courses

1 to 99 inclusive.

  E. Undergraduate Research

All undergraduate research courses shall be numbered 499, with the maximum amount of credit specified.

  F. Graduate Study or Research

All graduate courses bearing the unqualified title "Independent Study or Research" shall be numbered 600.

  G. a (suffix)

For courses offered during the first half of a Summer Quarter.

  H. b (suffix)

For courses offered during the last half of a Summer Quarter.

  I. DL Courses

Courses offered via distance learning or online DL courses will be tracked in the internal UW records, but not specifically designated on official UW transcripts.

    1) The course must be reviewed by the faculty of the proposing unit, the curriculum committee, and by the regular administration and Faculty Senate processes.

    2) The reviews must include consideration of specific means of content delivery and time allowed for completion.

    3) The course must have the same prerequisites and the same educational outcomes as the same-numbered regular course.

    4) All students (matriculated and nonmatriculated) must meet all course prerequisites with exceptions requiring approval by the instructor.

    5) Instructors must be approved by faculty of the proposing unit and must be given UW instructional titles.

    6) DL courses will be transcripted following the grading practices for classroom credit courses specified in Scholastic Regulations, Chapter 110, Section 1.

    7) Academic units must accept all versions of the same-numbered courses as equivalent for fulfillment of specific program requirements. However, a unit may set a minimum number of credits taken in residence and a maximum number of DL credits that may be applied towards the unit's degree.

    8) It is the responsibility of the home school or college to determine the necessity of and procedure for additional review of DL courses after the courses have been approved at the University level.

    9) Office of the University Registrar will provide colleges and offering units grade distributions, student evaluations, and characteristics of enrolled students for DL courses offered through UW Continuum College on request.

    10) DL courses offered by the student’s home campus are considered residence credits at that campus.

  J. j (suffix):  Joint Courses

Courses given by two or more departments. When possible, the same number shall be used by all participating departments. When duplicate numbers are not available, different numbers may be used. In all cases the sponsoring department shall assume the responsibility for the publication of details, such as room assignment, Time Schedule, etc.

  K. CS Plus College Code (prefix)

For courses carrying Continuing Studies credit. Example: CSENG 400 Linear Systems Analysis (5).

  L. Hyphenated Courses

Two or three course numbers connected by hyphens shall indicate a series of courses in which credit is given only upon completion of the final course of the series, unless special written permission of the instructor is obtained.

  M. Equivalent Courses

Equivalent courses are courses with the same core content that are offered independently by two or more offering units. Equivalent courses are considered duplicates for prerequisites, program requirements, when determining grade point averages, and repeated courses. Changes to an equivalent course will require reevaluation of that course's equivalence with other courses.

S-B 43, October 1949 with Presidential approval; HB, 1950; S-B 92, May 1964 with Presidential approval; S-C 180, October 1968; AI, November 1968; S-B 167, November 26, 2001 with Presidential approval; AI, February 9, 2006; S-B 173, April 6, 2007 with Presidential approval; AI, February 9, 2015; RC, October 27, 2017; S-B 191, February 18, 2020; S-B 195, May 29, 2020; S-B 200, January 29, 2021: all with Presidential approval.

2. The University Committee on Curriculum Administration

The University Committee on Curriculum Administration (UCCA) is charged and authorized with providing substantive guidance to the Office of the University Registrar on matters concerning the formal review, approval, and institutional documentation of courses. The committee is called upon by the Office of the University Registrar to review proposals for new courses and course changes that present questions or issues that fall outside the scope of the Office of the University Registrar’s procedural review. Additionally, the committee may engage the Office of the University Registrar on matters pertaining to any course proposal or the course proposal review process. The committee is chaired by a faculty representative nominated jointly by the chairs of the Faculty Council on Academic Standards, the Faculty Council on Teaching and Learning, and the Faculty Council on Tri-Campus Policy and approved by the Senate Chair.

S-B 212, June 2, 2023 with Presidential approval.

3.  Repeating of Courses

  A. Grade-Point Average

All grades earned at the University of Washington by an undergraduate student shall appear on the permanent record of a student and shall be included in the student's cumulative grade-point average.

  B. Repeating a Course

With the approval of the academic unit offering the course, an undergraduate student may repeat a course once. Both the original and the repeat grade shall be computed into the student's GPA, but the credit hours for the repeat shall not be counted. Through the prior approval requirement, a department or program may give enrollment priority to students who have not yet successfully completed the course into which they seek entry.

Graduate students may repeat any course, but only the first and second grades will be included in the cumulative GPA. Subsequent grades will not be included, but will appear on the transcript. The number of credits earned in the course will apply only once towards total credits. For formally approved repeatable courses, each course will be fully counted on the transcript with regard to credits, grades, and GPA calculation.

  C. Duplication of Credit

A student may not receive University credit for courses taken at the University that duplicate courses taken previously and for which credit has been allowed. This rule applies whether the earlier course was taken in high school or college, and whether, in the latter case, course numbers are or are not duplicated. If continuation of previous study is involved (e.g., foreign language), proper placement for credit in University courses shall be determined by the department which presents the subject.

S-B 113, March 1971; S-B 137, June 1981; S-B 144, January 26, 1985: all with Presidential approval; AI, February 9, 2015; S-B 212, June 2, 2023 with Presidential approval.

4.  Repeating of Dental Courses

A professional student in the School of Dentistry who receives a failing grade in a course may be permitted to re-register for the course, perform additional work, and take such exercises and examinations, including a final examination, as the course director may prescribe. This requires the permission of the dean and the course director, as well as the student progress committee of the School in the case of predoctoral students or the graduate program director in the case of graduate students. If the student successfully completes such exercises and examinations, and satisfies the course director, dean, and the student progress committee or graduate program director that the student has reasonable mastery of the subject in question, a passing grade may be awarded. The fact that the student originally earned a failing grade is to be apparent on the record.

CR, June 1976; CR, October 12, 2016; S-B 212, June 2, 2023 with Presidential approval..