Course Substitutions

What are Elective Course Substitutions?

Elective course substitutions are upper-division, 5-unit courses from other UCSC departments, other UCs or other four-year institutions, Education Abroad Program courses, or 5-unit Individual Study courses, which contain sociological content and, if petitioned and approved, can be used to satisfy a Sociology upper-division elective. Regular Sociology department electives are numbered SOCY 110-189; courses outside of SOCY 110-189 are considered course substitutions. If an upper-division elective course substitution you wish to apply to sociology is already being used towards another major or minor, then the double counting policy must be applied. Please check in with your advisor to verify whether you are allowed to double count in your programs.

How many Elective Course Substitutions can I apply to my major/minor?

The number of substitutions a student is allowed depends on the major or minor the student is pursuing and the catalog year the student is following for their major or minor:


Substitutions Allowed

Sociology BA Degree

2013-19 catalogs: Two out of the five electives can be course substitutions.

Sociology BA w/ GISES

Course Substitutions do not apply to this program as students can choose their upper-division, 5-unit electives from any department as long as they justify their choices. For more information see this page.

Combined BA Degree Three courses taken through an education abroad program, with approval from both departments.
Sociology Minor Degree

2013-19 catalogs: One out of the three electives can be a substitution. This minor has been suspended as of Fall 2016, review additional information here

GISES Minor Degree  Course Substitutions do not apply to this program as students can choose their upper-division, 5-unit electives from any department as long as they justify their choices. For more information see this page.

How do I know if a course is already approved as an Elective Course Substitution?

Click on the link to view the list of elective course substitutions that have already been approved from UCSC, other UCs, or Education Abroad. These courses were approved because a student petitioned the course, received approval, and is now available for other students to take as a course substitution. In addition, 5-unit Individual Study courses taken through the Sociology Department are all approved to be used as an elective course substitution. 

What do I do once I take a previously approved Elective Course Substitution?

If you take a course listed on one of the Previously Approved Course Substitution lists, you must submit a Course Substitution request form either online or the paper version:

An Elective Course Substitution is not applied to your major/minor requirements automatically, so you must complete a form in order to request for the course to apply to your major/minor. Academic Advisement Reports (AAR) are updated with Course Substitutions only when a Course Substitution form is submitted, you have declared the major or minor, and the grade has been recorded in MyUCSC. Please allow 4-5 weeks for those updates. 

The deadline to submit Course Substitution forms is by the beginning of the quarter you will be graduating, but ideally once you have the course grade. Petitions must be received in time for graduation checks. 

How do I get a new course approved as a Course Substitution?

1) It is best to have your courses approved prior to taking the course, if possible. In some cases it may be difficult to obtain a syllabus, such as courses offered through Education Abroad. If you are not able to obtain the syllabus prior to taking the course, be sure to petition the course as soon as you have received the syllabus.

2) The course syllabus should include goals/objectives of the course, assignments, a week-by-week breakdown, and a reading/materials list. If the syllabus lacks this information, you may keep your own notes and submit them along with the syllabus.

3) Submit a Course Substitution Petition either online or in-person. To submit the petition online, use this form and be sure to upload the course syllabus. Or you may submit the petition in-person by completing this paper version of the form, attach the syllabus, and turn it in to the department office: Rachel Carson College Rm 226. If the room is not open you may also slide the petition under the door or use the drop box next to Rm 235.

4) Petitions will be reviewed by a sociology faculty member, and results will be emailed to the student's UCSC email address within 2-3 weeks.

5) Course substitutions cannot be entered into your Academic Advisement Report until the course grade is available, and the student is declared in the major/minor. Once eligible, the Undergraduate Advisor will enter the substitution into the student's academic advisement report, and can take 4-5 weeks. Students who are declared in the LALS/SOCY Combined major, do not have Academic Advisement Reports for their major, so the petition will instead be kept in your record at the department office.

See Also