Academic Policies

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Academic Disqualification:

Undergraduate students who have been on academic probation for less than three semesters and are now subject to disqualification will be academically disqualified if they fail to meet with their major advisor and are approved for reinstatement. Please download the Academic Standing Petition before meeting with an advisor.

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Administrative Disqualification:

Undergraduate students on continuous academic probation/subject to disqualification for three or more semesters are not eligible to enroll in a subsequent semester. Departments may submit an appeal, with supporting documentation to the Registrar's Office for consideration.

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Department Advising:

Some departments have mandatory advising for their majors; this takes priority over FTF Advising. Departments may specify with the Registrar's Office if they want their majors to receive in-person advising in the department for the spring and/or fall semesters.

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First-Time Freshman Advising:

Fall 2009 First-Time Freshman admits must receive in-person advising every semester with their department/college advisors until they graduate. Fall 2010 and subsequent First-Time Freshman admits must receive advising during their first year of enrollment. They can satisfy their advising by completing the on-line advising tutorial and quiz at

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Graduate Student Enrollment Restrictions:

Graduate students and second baccalaureate students may not enroll in lower-division courses until the first day of instruction. Once classes begin students may enroll in lower-division classes (classes with course numbers 100 ? 299), on a space available basis, and with an instructor-approved permit number.

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Graduate Students Low GPA:

Graduate students who are academically deficient with either a term, SF State or All College GPA below 3.0, must meet with their department advisor every semester for review of their academic record. Students who have been on academic probation for three semesters will be disqualified and may not return until their GPA is 3.0 or above. Please download the Graduate Probation Advising form before meeting with an advisor.

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Incomplete Courses:

Students cannot repeat a course that has a grade of 'I' (Incomplete) unless the I grade has been converted to a grade, including an 'IC' (Charged Incomplete).

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Limit on Number of Units:

During Priority Registration, undergraduate students can register for up to 12 units. During the first three weeks of Open Registration, undergraduate and second BA students (not on probation) can add up to 16 units. This limit then increases to 19 units until the add deadline (end of the second week of instruction) and also by exception until the end of the fourth week of instruction, with an instructor-approved permit number. Students who are on probation are limited to 13 units. Students who petition to add more than 19 units may do so beginning on the first day of instruction..

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Major Change Policies:

A number of policies have been implemented that undergraduate students must follow.

Declaring a Major - New Student Admits:

Students who enter SF State as freshmen must declare a major by the time they complete 70 units; students who enter SF State as junior- or senior-level transfer students must declare a major by the end of their first semester of enrollment at SF State. Students who do not declare their major will no longer be granted priority in Priority Registration.

Beginning Spring 2011:

See Academic Senate Policy

  • Impacted Majors ? Both lower and upper division students requesting a change of major to an impacted program must meet the supplemental requirements required for that major. Requests to declare impacted majors must be received by the end of the initial filing period for the term for which new majors are being accepted. Continuing students who have earned 96 units or more may not apply to an impacted major.
  • Non-Impacted Majors - The change of major time period for all non-impacted majors to submit their request to a department is during the following time periods: for Fall term: August 1 - October 1; for Spring term: January 1 - March 1.
  • Lower-Division Students - Non-Impacted Majors - Department must accept changes of major for continuing lower-division students who have a minimum 2.0 GPA, and minimum grade of C in specified pre-requisite courses during the change of major time periods.
  • Upper-Division Students - Non-Impacted Majors - Department may determine number of units that must be completed with a minimum grade of C or a department may specify (normally lower-division) courses that must be completed with minimum grades of C for the upper-division student to declare their major. The department may not limit enrollment in such courses to majors only.

Changing a Major For Seniors With 96 or More Units:

Continuing students who have earned 96 units or more may not apply to an impacted major - see impacted major list. Students with 96 or more units can only change to a non-impacted major if they can show that they will be able to complete their new major by the time they reach 120-132 units, depending on the major. A departmental-approved Change/Declaration of Major after Accruing 96 Units form must be turned in to the Registrar's Office.

Adding a Second Major:

A student can only add a second major if they can complete both majors within the minimum units required to graduate (120-132 units, depending on the majors). They must complete a Request to Add a Second Major form and submit to the Registrar's Office for review.

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Mandatory Academic Probation (MAP):

Undergraduate students placed on academic probation must get advising during the fall semester to be eligible to register in the spring. Students in the College of Creative Arts receive MAP advising in both fall and spring semesters. Please download the Academic Standing Petition before meeting with an advisor.

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Over Sixty Program Suspended:

Effective March 1, 2011, as one of the cost-savings needed to address higher student demand and lack of funding, San Francisco State University suspended until further notice the Over Sixty Program. Students already accepted into the Over Sixty program can continue until they complete their degree. Students must make progress towards their degree and will be monitored by the Registrar?s Office. Please read the Over-Sixty program notice Over-Sixty program notice for details and how this suspension will affect continuing and new students.

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Repeating Courses and 28 Unit Limit on Repeated Courses:

Undergraduate students who receive a grade in a course that is lower than C, including AU, IC, RD, RP, W, and WU, may repeat that course only once more. Graduate students who receive a grade lower than B, including AU, IC, RD, RP, W, and WU, may repeat that course only once more. Note: WM grades do not count towards the repeat rule. An undergraduate student cannot repeat any course once the student has repeated 28 units at SF State, unless the course is described in the current SF State Bulletin as repeatable for credit. Requests for exceptions to this policy shall require the consent of the department chair in which the course is offered and the college dean of that college.

When a student chooses to repeat a course in which the grade was passing, all units attempted and all grade points earned will be used in the calculation of the student's grade point average, but the units earned will be applied to the calculation of total units earned only once. (Units earned toward graduation include courses receiving passing grades only.)

Once a bachelor's degree has been granted, repeating courses for any reason (as a visitor, post-baccalaureate, or Open University student) will not affect the GPA or content of the degree already granted.

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Super Seniors:

Undergraduate students with more than 144 units earned must complete a Baccalaureate Degree Completion Plan (DCP) during the spring semester and get approval from their major department and Undergraduate Advising to enroll in fall classes. They will be monitored by the Registrar?s Office and must follow their Degree Completion Plan and apply for graduation by the agreed upon date. Please download the Baccalaureate Degree Completion Plan form before meeting with an advisor.

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Time Limit to Complete Requirements for Undergraduate Degree:

There is normally no statutory period for units required for an undergraduate degree at SF State. However, if any course required for the major, minor, or certificate was taken more than seven years prior to graduation, then departments and programs may require students to retake that course or demonstrate currency in that subject.

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Withdrawal Policy:

Beginning Fall 2009, an undergraduate student may withdraw from a course a maximum of two times and from no more than 18 semester-units of course work. This does not include total semester withdrawals of all courses or classes taken in the College of Extended Learning. In order to identify withdrawals that are counted towards the 18 unit limit, unofficial transcripts show the grade ?W? (counts towards 18 unit limit) or ?WM' (doesn?t count towards 18 unit limit). Only the grade of ?W? prints on official transcripts.


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Last updated 06/15/2017 by AV