Principles to Determine Graduation Requirements for Students with Pre-2004/06 Catalog Rights

Beginning with the Fall 2004 Semester, the Sociology Department implemented new graduation requirements for its undergraduate and graduate degree programs.  A major part of this change involves a shift in most our courses from 3-units per semester to 4-units per semester.  A few of our courses will remain at 3-units, and some will be offered at 2-units.

The shift in the unit base of our courses has consequences for those students ("continuing students") who have rights to earlier catalogs in which our degree programs were based on 3-unit courses.  The main consequence is that the four-unit courses that we now offer do not match the unit totals required in the past catalogs.  For example, the most recent past catalog requires that students majoring in Sociology complete four upper division core courses (SOC 320, 360, 480, & 495) that produce 13 semester units.  Because all of these courses are now offered at 4-units, continuing students who still need to complete all of these courses would accumulate 16 units in the core.  Students who had completed one or more core courses before Fall 2004 will accumulate core course unit totals of 14-16.

The Sociology Department developed a set of principles that will govern how we determine each continuing student's graduation requirements during the transition from our old 3-unit major structure to the new 4-unit structure.  The principles are:

  1. Continuing students with catalog rights to the old major requirements have the option of choosing to be governed by the new major structure.  This may not be desirable for students who have already completed some of the major requirements.
  2. Students must complete the minimum number of upper division units in the major as specified by their governing catalog.  The most recent past catalog requires 34 units of upper division course work in the major (13 core and 21 elective).  The new catalog requires 40 upper division units (20 core and 20 elective).
  3. Continuing students governed by past catalogs must complete all required upper division core courses specified in their governing catalog.  This means that many continuing students will be end up with unit totals for the required core courses that exceed those of their governing catalog.  Any such excess units accumulated in the core may be deducted from the total number of major elective concentration units required by the governing catalog.
  4. The number of elective courses required to graduate will be determined by the difference between the upper division unit total specified by the governing catalog and the units accumulated by completing the core course requirements (specified in #3).  For example, if a continuing student accumulated 15 units of required core course work, s/he would only need to accumulate 19 units of elective course work in the major (this number is arrived at by calculating subtracting the excess core units (15-13 = 2) from the elective unit total (21-2 = 19).
  5. Two of the courses used to satisfy the elective requirements must be at the 400-level or higher.
Continuing students who have questions about how to apply these principles to determine their graduation requirements are encouraged to contact their faculty advisor.