Course Descriptions Symbols and Terms

The following is a fictitious example of a catalog course description illustrating the notations and symbols used for course descriptions throughout The University Catalog.

UNIV 101A Introduction to Life 1.0-4.0 FS

Prerequisites: High school graduation Corequisities: Validated enrollment in a minimum of 6 units, ENGL 001, and faculty permission.

A comprehensive introduction to life. A series of lectures by university figures, small group discussions and an independent project all geared to orienting the new student to life. 2.0 Hours lecture, 1.0 Hours discussion, 3.0 Hours supervision. ABC/no credit grading only. You may take this course for credit more than once; see the department for information. This is an approved General Education course. Special fee required; see The Class Schedule.


The first line of the course description contains the official Course Identification used in The Class Schedule, student registration lists, and transcripts. It is followed by the complete course title, unit value, and semester-offered symbol.

Credit for courses offered by California State University, Chico is awarded in terms of semester units. The unit value of a course is computed on the basis of one unit for each hour of lecture or discussion, two hours of activity, two to three hours of laboratory, or three hours of independent study or internship per week, for a 16-week semester. Courses meeting for fewer than 16 weeks will require an equivalent number of hours pro-rated on a per-week basis. For most courses, two hours of out-of-class preparation will be expected for each hour of in-class lecture or recitation.

The semester a course is normally offered is symbolized as follows:

FA = during fall semester each year SP = during spring semester each year FS = during fall and spring semester each year F1 = during fall semester odd years F2 = during fall semester even years S1 = during spring semester odd years S2 = during spring semester even years SM = during summer session JA = during January Intersession Inq = inquire at department, offered irregularly


Registration requirements are outlined on the line immediately following the course title and are defined as follows:

Prerequisites: You must fulfill specific coursework or other conditions before you will be allowed to enroll in the course. Prerequisites may be waived by the faculty member only on approval of a formal petition which fully outlines the equivalent attainment. You must have a passing grade for a prerequisite course. Your total number of units determines whether you meet a prerequisite for class level (e.g., sophomore), unless the requirement is otherwise defined and listed in the catalog.

The prerequisites line may also contain the following information:

Recommended Background: It is recommended that you have prior coursework or knowledge; the term is used to advise and caution, but not to prevent your enrollment.

Corequisite: You must take concurrently the course or courses indicated. The requirement may not be waived.

Recommended Co-enrollment: You are advised to take a recommended concurrent enrollment; it is used to advise you of proper course sequence.

Faculty Permission: You must obtain permission of the instructor before registration can be allowed. Inquire in the department office for specific instructions regarding permission to register.


A complete course description is provided. You may assume courses meet for one hour of lecture per unit of credit with regular letter grading employed unless otherwise stated. At the end of the course description, a statement or series of statements will appear to indicate any special features of the course: activities, labs, or supervised activity; ABC/NC or CR/NC grading; courses permitting registration more than once; special fees associated with a course; and courses approved for General Education and Ethnic or Non-Western Studies. Courses with approved equivalents under the California Articulation Numbering (CAN) System also provide the equivalent CAN course number at the end of the description. This practice is subject to change without notice.


The following course numbering system is employed.

001-099: PRE-BACCALAUREATE These courses are generally developmental or preparatory and carry no baccalaureate credit.

100-199: FRESHMEN OR 1ST YEAR, LOWER-DIVISION These courses are designed for freshmen, but may be taken by others. Many community college courses may be comparable.

200-299: SOPHOMORE OR 2ND YEAR, LOWER-DIVISION These courses are designed for sophomores, but may be taken by others. Some community college courses may be comparable.

300-399: JUNIOR OR 3RD YEAR, UPPER-DIVISION These courses are designed for juniors, but may be taken by others. This course designation is appropriate for GE Upper-Division Themes. None of these courses are comparable to community college courses. Since community college courses cannot qualify for upper-division credit, it is presumed that upper-division courses at CSU, Chico should not be equivalent to similar courses at any community college.

400-499: SENIOR OR 4TH YEAR, UPPER-DIVISION OR GRADUATE These courses are designed for seniors, but may be taken by others. This course designation is appropriate for senior seminars and courses that require a high degree of disciplinary sophistication or a high degree of specificity in content. It assumes considerable prerequisite knowledge and experience. None of these courses is comparable to community college courses. Students receiving graduate credit for these courses generally are required to complete additional course work compared to students receiving baccalaureate credit.

500-599: ADVANCED SENIOR OR GRADUATE These courses reflect advanced study, which is appropriate for both seniors and graduate students. Students receiving graduate credit for these courses generally are required to complete additional course work compared to students receiving baccalaureate credit. These courses can include post- baccalaureate courses, such as those in credential programs, which are not permitted to be included in course work for graduate degrees.

600-699: GRADUATE Graduate courses are open to post-baccalaureate students only, except that undergraduates with permission of the Dean of the Graduate School may enroll. They require an identification and investigation of a theory or principle; application of theory to new ideas, problems, and materials; extensive use of bibliographic and other resource materials; or competence in the scholarly presentation of independent study research.


800-899: OTHER These courses focus on problems encountered in professional service and aim to meet the needs of groups seeking vocational improvement and career advancement. They are designed primarily for the purpose of meeting objectives that cannot be served by established graduate and undergraduate courses. Credit for these courses does not apply to degrees. However, in exceptional cases and with the approval of the appropriate department and college dean, students may apply these toward degree and credential programs for which such courses are deemed acceptable. Determination of the acceptability of these courses for degree and credential credit will depend primarily upon course content and approach. Students should not consider registering in these courses for credential or degree purposes without first consulting with the appropriate department.

900-999: NON-CREDIT These non-credit courses are designed to provide opportunities to pursue cultural, intellectual, and social interests.


The following course numbering conventions have been adopted to facilitate identification of course content across disciplines.

189, 289, 389, 489, 589, 689: Internship and other experience-based courses. These courses involve community work with placement in a public or private agency under the supervision of a qualified professional. A maximum of 15 internship units may be applied to a bachelor's degree (a department may limit the number of units which count toward its major requirements).

198, 298, 398, 498, 598, 698:

Special topics and experimental courses offered on a one-time only basis or new courses offered between catalogs. No university limit on the number which may count for a degree. A major may limit the number of units which count toward its major requirements.

199, 299, 399, 499, 599: Special problems courses used for independent study with variable units (indicated in The Class Schedule by VAR). You are strongly advised to enroll in no more than 3 units of independent study per semester; a total of 6 units may apply toward a bachelor's degree. All courses are graded CR/NC, and none apply in a master's degree program. See The University Catalog, Independent Study and Special Purpose Courses section, for full details.

199H, 299H, 399H, 499H, 599H: Honors courses are available to students eligible for the University Honors Program. The 3- or 6-unit independent studies course, normally taken in the senior year, culminates in a research paper, project, or performance that is publicly presented. You must receive a grade of B or higher in the course for Honors credit.

597, 697: Graduate Independent Study: See "Graduate Education."

699: Graduate Master's Study: See "Graduate Education."


The California Articulation Number (CAN) System identifies some of the transferable, lower-division, introductory, preparatory courses commonly taught within each academic discipline on college campuses.

The system assures students that CAN courses on one participating campus will be accepted in lieu of the comparable CAN course on another participating campus. Example: CAN ECON 2 on one campus will be acceptable for CAN ECON 2 on another participating campus. Each campus retains its own numbering system. The CAN course identification where applicable is identified at the end of the course description in this catalog.


The following course subject abbreviations are used in The University Catalog, The Class Schedule, student study lists, academic planning guides, evaluation materials, and transcripts.

Abbreviation Definition

AAST Asian American Studies

ABUS Agriculture Business

ACCT Accounting

AFAM African American Studies

AFRI African Studies

AGET Agriculture Engineering Technology

AGRI Agriculture

AIST American Indian Studies

AMST American Studies

ANSC Animal Science

ANTH Anthropology

APCG Applied Computer Graphics

ARAB Arabic

ARCH Architecture


ASST Asian Studies

BADM Business Administration

BIOL Biological Sciences

BSIS Business Information Systems

BLAW Business Law

BLMC Education-Bilingual/Multicultural

CHLD Child Development

CDES Communication Design

CIVL Civil Engineering

CHEM Chemistry

CHNS Chinese

CHST Chicano Studies

CMGT Construction Management

CMSD Communication Sciences and Disorders

CMST Communication Studies

COMM Communication

CSCI Computer Science

EECE Electrical & Computer Engineering

ECON Economics

EDAD Education Administration

EDCI Education-Curriculum and Instruction

EDEC Education-Early Childhood Education

EDMA Education-Master's Program

EDSL Education-Second Language

EDTE Education-Teacher Education

EDUC Education

EFLN English as a Foreign Language

ENGL English

ENGR Engineering

FINA Finance

FLNG Foreign Languages and Literatures

FREN French

GEOG Geography

GEOS Geological and Environmental Sciences

GERM German

GNED General Education

GSTP General Studies Thematic Program

HBRW Hebrew

HCSV Health and Gerontology

HIST History

HNDI Hindi

HNRS Honors

HUMN Humanities

IDST Interdisciplinary Studies (Graduate Level)

INST International Studies

INTD Interdisciplinary Studies (Undergradute Level)

ITAL Italian

JAPN Japanese

JOUR Journalism

KINE Kinesiology

LAST Latin American Studies

LATN Latin

LBST Liberal Studies

MATH Mathematics

MCGS Multicultural and Gender Studies

MECH Mechanical Engineering

MECA Mechatronic Engineering

MEST Middle Eastern Studies

MFGT Manufacturing Technology

MGMT Management

MINS Management Information Systems

MJIS Modern Jewish and Israel Studies

MKTG Marketing

MTHE Mathematics Education

MUSC Music

NFSC Nutrition and Food Science

NSCI Natural Sciences

NSCT Natural Science Teaching

NURS Nursing

PHED Physical Education

PHIL Philosophy

PHYS Physics

POLS Political Science

PORT Portuguese

PSSC Plant and Soil Science

PSYC Psychology

QBAN Quantitative Business Analysis

RDGL Education-Reading/Language Arts

REAL Real Estate

RECR Recreation Administration

RELS Religious Studies

RUSS Russian

SCMS Supply Chain Management Systems

SOCI Sociology

SOSC Social Science

SPAN Spanish

SPED Education-Special Education

SWRK Social Work


THEA Theatre Arts

UGED Undergraduate Education

UNIV University Academics

VIET Vietnamese

WMST Women's Studies