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CALS Criteria for Cross-Listing

(Revision of a policy begun December 1988, revised December 13, 2003 and fall 2015 [the current version was approved by the CALS Faculty Senate on February 3, 2016])

Cross-listing refers to the same course having course numbers in two or more majors, minors or departments and is generally implemented when recognition is required for the obligations or responsibilities of departments or faculty instructors.

There are only a few grounds to cross-list a course:

  • The course is co-taught by faculty from different departments or programs.
  • The course is developed as a required course in one departmental or multi-departmental major or minor and also needs to be seen as a significant or required part of the curriculum of another major or minor (for example, the home department(s) of the faculty instructor(s)).
  • The course contains material that is seen as a significant or required part of the curriculum of both departments or programs.

Once it meets one or all of these criteria, to be considered for cross-listing, a course:

  • Must be reviewed and approved by the curriculum committees in the several majors or minors involved.
  • Must be reviewed and approved by the curriculum committees of the colleges involved.

The rationale for cross-listing must be documented during the approval process.

Alternatives to cross-listing

CALS has generous allowances for courses taken outside of the college (the most generous of any college at this time). Further, the combination of college and major or minor requirements is generally flexible enough to allow students to take courses in other colleges. Additionally, CALS shares several majors and minors with other colleges. Courses in these majors or minors are accepted as CALS courses without cross-listing.[1] Therefore, there should be little need for cross-listing courses.

Requests are often erroneously made to cross-list in order to make a course more visible to students in other majors. Alternatives to cross-listing that satisfy this need are:

  • Departmental and multi-departmental majors or minors in CALS can and often do list required courses that are taught by faculty in other departments. Common examples are calculus, chemistry, and economics.
  • Departmental and multi-departmental majors or minors can and do list courses in any department that meet requirements of the major or minor where their students have a choice among several courses.
  • Majors or minors can and do provide course recommendations to students for a variety of purposes unrelated to requirements of the major or minor.

The Curriculum Committee will not approve courses for cross-listing when this is:

  • Solely or primarily for the purpose of making the course visible to students.
  • Solely to enhance the stature of the course; i.e. to accommodate students who only want to register for courses in fields considered fashionable.

The Curriculum Committee will also not be able to cross-list courses that do not meet the SUNY/Carnegie guidelines for credit in relation to contact hours.

[1] Biological Sciences, Biology and Society, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Information Sciences, Nutritional Science, Statistics.