Curriculum Policies

Undergraduate Course and Curricular Numbering System

100-199 Introductory courses; appropriate for and generally taken by freshmen.

200-299 Intermediate courses; appropriate for and generally taken by sophomores.

300-399 Upper-division courses; appropriate for and generally taken by juniors and seniors.

400-499 Upper-division major courses, seminars, directed readings and research, and teaching practica; appropriate for and generally taken by juniors and seniors. A few 400-level courses for seniors only are so noted.

Courses with hyphenated numbers (e.g., HIS 495-HIS 496) are year-long courses. Students will not be awarded credit for either course unless they complete both semesters.

Renumbered Courses

The notation (“formerly ABC ###”) after a course number and title indicates that the course designator or number has been changed. Courses renumbered from lower-division (100-200) to upper-division (300-400) level may not be used retroactively to satisfy the 39 upperdivision credit requirement of the University unless specifically noted in the course description. The newly renumbered or designated courses may not be repeated for credit.

Southampton Courses and DEC or Skill Designators

If a course satisfies a DEC or Skill, the DEC &/or Skill designator is indicated in the Course Description listings of this Bulletin following the course number (e.g. HIS 104 K&4 or WRT 103-A).

Courses offered in Southampton that are also offered on the west campus are tagged with a "-S" location marker on class schedule and student transcripts to simplify class searches and student enrollment. Courses with the same subject designator and course number offered on both campuses are identical in content and satisfy the same prerequisites and requirements for graduation. For example, ECO 108-F on the west campus is the same ECO-S 108-F on the Southampton campus. The "-S" location marker is only noted on student transcripts and class schedules when the course is offered in Southampton and is not noted in the Bulletin or Course Catalog description for the course. Course subject designators for courses that are only offered at Southampton do not carry the "-S" suffix (e.g. CSK, EDP, EHI, EHM, ENV, SBC, SUS).

Enrichment Courses

These courses are restricted to specific groups of students. Introduction to Stony Brook 101, Undergraduate College Seminar 102, and SBU 101, one-credit courses for first-semester freshmen and transfer students, introduce students to the Stony Brook academic environment. All freshmen entering Stony Brook in the fall semester are required to take ACH/GLS/HDV/ITS/ LDS/SSO 101 in the fall and ACH/GLS/ HDV/ITS/LDS/SSO 102 in the spring, based on their undergraduate college affiliation. Freshmen entering Stony Brook in the spring semester must take first-year seminar 102. Students in the Honors College register for HON 106 (fall) and HON 105 (spring). AIM 102 and 104 are open to students in the EOP/AIM program only. See the descriptions of each of these courses in the Course Descriptions section of this Bulletin.

Multiple Registrations for the Same Course

Mutually Exclusive Courses

Crosslisted Courses

Co-scheduled Courses


Auditing refers to the practice of attending a course for informational instruction only. The privilege of auditing courses is limited to matriculated students and senior citizens. Matriculated students who wish to audit a course must first obtain permission from the instructor. Senior citizens must arrange to audit courses through the School of Professional Development. An auditor does not receive academic credit for the course, nor does the University maintain any record of the auditor’s attendance in the course.

Individual instructors may establish policies for auditors in their courses. In general, auditors are expected to refrain from participating in class discussions and from turning in or asking for grading of homework, term papers, or examinations. After the end of the add/drop period, the student may not change status in a course from auditor to registered.

Course Prerequisites

Students should meet the prerequisites to a course before taking the course. Prerequisites indicate through specific coursework the type of knowledge, the level of academic maturity, or the acceptance to a specific program that a student should have achieved before taking a course. Completion of the prerequisites may be in progress at the time the student advance registers for the following semester. The University has the option to de-register, by the end of the first week of classes, any student not meeting the prerequisites to a course. In addition, some courses enforce prerequisites at the time of registration. Students who believe they have satisfied the prerequisites to a course through transfer work or through other study or experience should seek permission of the instructor before registering. Permission of the instructor supersedes stated prerequisites. Certain courses may be taken only with the permission of the instructor or of the department; this is listed as a prerequisite to the course.

Advisory prerequisites indicate the type of knowledge a student should have in order to do better in a course than would be expected without that knowledge. Students electing to take a course without satisfying the advisory prerequisite should expect to have to work harder and not do as well as students who have completed the advisory prerequisite.

Limits on Course Credits and Grading Options

There are limits on the number of credits from certain courses that can be applied toward the 120 required for the B.A. or B.S. degree, or the 128 required for the B.E. degree. Listed below are the maximum numbers of credits that can be applied toward the total number of credits required for a degree:

Independent study (30 credits): courses with numbers 273, 287, 444-449, 484-489, 499

Internships (12 credits): of which no more than 6 credits may be EXT 288

Activity-related courses (9 credits): AFS 283, LHD 307, LHD 308, PSY 283

Undergraduate teaching practica (6 credits)

Maximum numbers of credits that can be earned in non-liberal arts and sciences courses: B.A. candidates 30 credits; B.S. candidates 60 credits; B.E. candidates 90 credits

The following courses are non-liberal arts and sciences courses: ARS 154BUS 210, 214, 348; MUS individual instrument or voice instruction courses; student teaching courses numbered 449, 450, 451, 452, and 454; THR 244, 295, 296, 301-307, 340; BME, CME, ESE, ESG, ESM, and MEC courses; HAD, HAN, HAS, HBA, HBM, HDH, HDO, HDP, HNI courses; HWC fieldwork courses

Credits by approved examinations (30 credits): Approved examination programs are Advanced Placement examinations, College Level Examination Program subject examination, Regents College examinations, Stony Brook Challenge examination

Graduate courses (6 credits)

Developmental courses (0 credits): AIM 102, MAP 101, and MAP 103 are developmental courses

Repeated courses (0 credits): Courses are not repeatable unless specifically noted as repeatable in the Undergraduate Bulletin course description. See the entries “Retaking Courses” and “Repeatable Courses” earlier in this chapter for more information.

Restrictions on Credits Earned with a Grade of P: Students must complete at least 100 credits of the 120 required for the B.A. or B.S. or of the 128 credits required for the B.E. degree with a letter grade. In addition, courses taken under the Pass/No Credit option will not satisfy D.E.C. or general education requirements.