“A-G” Subject Area Requirements for University of California
The intent of the “a-g” Subject Requirements is to ensure that students can participate fully in the first-year program at the University in a wide variety of fields of study. The requirements are written deliberately for the benefit of all students expecting to enter the University, and not for preparation for specific majors. UC faculty consider the Subject Requirements to be effective preparation, on many levels, for undergraduate work at the University. This pattern of study assures the faculty that the student has attained a body of general knowledge that will provide breadth and perspective to new, more advanced study. Fulfillment of the “a-g” pattern also demonstrates that the student has attained essential critical thinking and study skills.
On an annual basis, public and private California high schools use the “a-g” Online Update web site to submit to UC requested updates to their existing “a-g” course list. It is recommended that new schools develop an “a-g” course list by the time their first class of students are Juniors.
Every year, the Director of Undergraduate Admissions for the University of California will send an Update Letter request via email to every California high school asking them to submit updates to the schools’ UC certified “a-g” course list.
This section of the web site is designed to fully explain the course list update process and describe the faculty’s guidelines for approval of new courses. The entire section is available in a printable PDF format (see link above). We recommend that you become familiar with this basic information before proceeding to other sections of this web site.
Validation Changes. The University uses a process known as validation to allow students to clear, or validate, a course omission or “D” or “F” grade in certain subject areas. In 2004 UC faculty clarified a couple of validation rules: (a) a passing grade in the second semester of chemistry will no longer validate a “D” or “F” grade in the first semester, and (b) statistics will no longer validate geometry, but will continue to validate beginning and intermediate algebra.