February 1: A-G Course Management Portal (CMP) & 2015-16 submission period opens
The 2015-16 “a-g” course submission period opened on February 1 and courses can now be submitted for “a-g” review through the new A-G Course Management Portal (CMP). This brand new system is designed to streamline the “a-g” course submission and review process, and serve as a collaborative, statewide K-12 repository of “a-g” course descriptions for curriculum design
The course submission period will be continue to be divided into the following three distinct phases and will close on Tuesday, September 15 at midnight PST:
The elective ("g") subject requirementThe elective (“g”) subject requirement can be satisfied in a number of different ways. The one-year (two-semester) requirement can be fulfilled either by an additional, approved “a-f” course beyond the required minimum for the subject area, or by a course approved specifically in the “g” subject area, including courses that combine any of the “a-f” subject areas in an interdisciplinary fashion.
Revisions to the UC honors course policy
To improve the criteria and review process for honors “a-g” courses, UC faculty approved the following honors policy revisions, which will go into effect with the opening of the 2015-16 “a-g” course submission cycle on February 1, 2015.
- The first change has to do with the number of homegrown (i.e. school-created) honors courses a school may have approved for UC-designated honors in any given “a-g” subject area. Right now the maximum is 2 courses. For the upcoming “a-g” course submission cycle, there will be no limit. This change allows high schools the flexibility to offer the college-prep curriculum that is best for your students. In addition, it expands the potential range of school-created honors “a-g” courses that carry extra weight when calculating a student’s UC GPA.
- Second, UC will allow any qualified school-created high school honors course to be eligible for UC honors designation, including courses categorized in the college-preparatory elective (“g”) area.
- Under the revised policy, all UC-approved school-created honors courses must still have a non-honors equivalent, but the non-honors course does not need to be offered simultaneously. The non-honors equivalent is required to be offered at the same frequency, in the same subject area, and at the same targeted grade level.
- Finally, the policy revisions will allow qualified school-created honors courses geared toward the 10th grade level to be eligible for UC honors approval.
These policy revisions speak to the types of “a-g” courses that are eligible for extra honors weight, which has bearing on the UC GPA calculations. To encourage students to pursue more challenging coursework while in high school, UC assigns extra weight to grades earned in up to four years (or eight semesters) of UC-designated honors courses. There is no change to UC policy on limitations of the number of UC honors courses that carry extra weight when calculating the UC GPA.
UC’s support of Common Core
The “a-g” course criteria and the goals of the “a-g” subject requirements for freshman admission to UC are consistent with the goals underlying California’s Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Over the past 18 months, UC’s Academic Senate and the UC Office of the President (UCOP) have engaged in several initiatives to bolster statewide Common Core implementation efforts. For details, please refer to the July 2014 UCOP briefing [PDF] that summarizes how UC faculty and UCOP Articulation support CCSS.
A-G Courses & the College Board AP Audit
Beginning with the 2015-16 academic year, California high schools submitting new or redesigned Advanced Placement (AP) courses will be required to receive AP Course Audit authorization from the College Board prior to submitting the AP course to for “a-g” review. The final deadline to submit a course for UC’s review during the 2015-16 submission period is September 15, 2015, which means schools will need to submit AP Course Audit materials to the College Board no later than June 1, 2015, and preferably earlier, in case the school does not receive AP Course Audit authorization on first submission and needs to revise and resubmit to the College Board. A joint letter from University of California Office of the President (UCOP) and the College Board was sent out in July 2014 detailing the new process for submitting AP courses to UC for “a-g” review and approval.
A-G & Common Core Math
UC is working together with California high schools with the transition and implementation of California's Common Core State Standards (CCSS). The High School Articulation staff reviews high school courses against the “a-g” course criteria determined by UC faculty. Those criteria and the goals of the “a-g” subject requirements are consistent with the goals underlying the Common Core State Standards. During this transition, please refer to our FAQs [PDF] that address many of the concerns and questions regarding the implementation of the Common Core State Standards and the "a-g" subject requirements, specifically in the area of mathematics.
UC accepting online lab science courses without labs from publishers
Online course publishers offering online laboratory science courses without a required teacher-supervised, hands-on lab component can submit their courses to UC for "a-g" review. UC will provisionally approve the online laboratory science courses. Final "a-g" approval will be awarded per institution based on the on-site, wet laboratory activities the individual school, district or program has developed to supplement the online curriculum they purchased or licensed from the publisher. High schools, districts and programs will be prompted to include descriptions of the required labs when submitting their course submission to add the publisher's laboratory science course to their "a-g" course list.