Update your A-G List

A-G Course Submission Deadlines

The annual course submission period is February 1 - September 15

We highly recommend all institutions begin the process of updating their A-G lists early to ensure you have plenty of time to update your A-G list before the UC admissions application opens on August 1.

Phase 1: February 1 - May 31
  • Courses initially submitted during Phase 1 have up to two opportunities for resubmission if the course is not initially approved.  
  • The first resubmission must be submitted to UC by the close of Phase 2 (July 31).
  • The second resubmission must be submitted to UC by the close Phase 3 (September 15).
Phase 2: June 1 - July 31
  • Courses initially submitted during Phase 2 have one opportunity for resubmission. Resubmissions must be sent to UC by the close of Phase 3 (September 15).
Phase 3: August 1 - September 15
  • Courses initially submitted during Phase 3 will have no opportunities for resubmission.
  • Any courses not initially approved during Phase 3 will need to be submitted to UC during the next submission period.

Submitting courses

Every institution that serves high school students in California needs to submit courses to the A-G Course Management Portal (CMP) for review by UC.

Each person that supports the A-G course submission process, whether by writing courses or managing the A-G list, should register for their own user account on the A-G CMP.

Draft your course
  • Review the different types of course submissions
  • Review the course description & content requirements
    • Review the A-G subject areas to ensure your course meets all of the requirements.
    • Visit the Writing A-G courses page to learn about what you need to include in your course description.
  • Use your resources
    • Work with your course content experts (e.g. teachers, subject department chairs, curriculum directors) to write the course.
    • The Course Search on the A-G CMP allows you to search for and view other school’s A-G approved courses.
    • Utilize the “Share draft course” feature on the A-G CMP to collaborate with other users on course drafts.
Forwarding and submitting your course

Course and reference list managers are responsible for submitting courses to UC for review via the A-G CMP. All A-G CMP users with basic permissions must forward courses to their course or reference list manager, who must review each course before making the final submission to UC.

After you submit

Find out your results

Log into the A-G CMP to view your results from the Home or My Courses page.

New courses are generally reviewed within two to four weeks of submission. However, depending on the time of year and volume of submissions, it may take longer.

Not approved courses

If your course does not get approved and is eligible for resubmission, resubmit the course after making modifications to the submission based on the analyst’s comments.

Types of course submissions

New courses

Brand new courses are courses created by your institution. Before you start writing a course, review the A-G subject requirements to ensure course meets the criteria and guidelines of its respective subject area.

See the Writing A-G courses page for information on course description requirements, guidance, and sample courses.

Modeling after another institution's course

Schools can model after courses already approved at another school using the "Model after another institution's course" feature on the A-G CMP.

When modeling after another institution’s course, make edits to the course description as necessary to reflect how the course will be taught at your institution and meets current A-G subject requirements and submission requirements.

Adding program courses

Programs (e.g. the College Board Advanced Placement Program, CSU Early Assessment Program) submit their own standardized courses to UC for review.

Students are not able to directly enroll in program courses to fulfill the A-G subject requirements. These courses are A-G approved for the program to sell or license their curriculum to be taught by teacher or administrator within the local high school or district.

Program A-G reference lists can be found on the A-G Reference List website.

Adding ROC/P Courses

ROC/P's maintain A-G lists in the A-G CMP so that schools may choose to add these courses to their own A-G course lists. For more information about the courses developed by an ROC/P, please contact a representative from the ROC/P directly. Contact information is available on the A-G Course List site. 

Self-reporting online publisher courses

As of February 1, 2020, schools add online publisher courses to their A-G course lists by certifying and self-reporting courses from UC-registered online course publishers. More information about certifying and self-reporting courses can be found in the summary of the updated online course policy. 

Activating archived courses

Schools and districts/school networks can activate archived courses that will be taught in the upcoming academic year.

Activations require a full review of the course. When activating archived courses, update the course description information to ensure it meets current A-G subject requirements and submission requirements.

Writing A-G courses

Your course description should include relevant information that would assist those reviewing your course in having a better understanding and clarity about how the course meets the A-G subject requirements.

What we look for in an A-G course description
  • Course Overview: Describe the overarching content and goals of the course.
  • Unit summaries and assignments: Include one summary and one sample assignment for every unit in the course. Use these sections to show how the unit content and assignments meet A-G subject requirements.
  • Unit labs for science D courses: For each unit, describe a teacher-supervised, laboratory activity that involves inquiry, observation, analysis and write-up.

When you see Unit Summary, think of how you would answer, “What are your students learning in this unit?”

Our UC High School Articulation analysts expect to see 3-5 sentences that succinctly describe the critical thinking, depth, and progression of skills and content covered in the unit. 

When you see Unit Assignment, think of how you would answer, “How do your students demonstrate learning in this assignment?”

Include 3-5 sentences that summarize a key assignment for each unit. Make sure you mention how students complete each assignment, what (e.g. 3 page essay, diorama, model) students produce, and what (e.g. list of concepts, design process, collaboration skills) students learn. When describing what students learn, focus on explaining how that learning aligns with the A-G criteria for the course's given subject area.

UC honors designation

If you are seeking UC honors designation for your course, you will need to include additional information, such as a final exam or project, to meet the general UC honors requirements below and subject area specific UC honors criteria. You can find the subject area specific UC honors course criteria on each individual subject area requirements page.

Beginning with the 2016-17 submission period, the following course criteria are effective for honors-level courses seeking A-G approval:

Honors courses designed by an institution to demonstrate distinctive features that set it apart from regular high school courses in the same A-G subject area are eligible for the UC honors designation. These courses should be comparable in terms of workload and rigor to Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB) or introductory college-level courses in the subject.

There is no limit to the number of UC-designated honors-level high school courses that may be approved for an institution's A-G course list.

General UC honors course criteria

  1. Honors-level courses are specialized, advanced courses designed for 10th-, 11th- or 12th-graders who have already completed foundation work in the subject area. High school courses offered at the grade 9 level that schools might locally designate as “honors” are not eligible for the UC honors designation.
  2. Courses must have established prerequisites, as appropriate to the discipline.
  3. Honors-level courses must have a comprehensive final examination or a substantive, culminating project. The purpose of the final exam/project is for students to exhibit depth of knowledge and sustained mastery of subject material.
  4. In general, it is highly recommended [but not required] high school courses being considered for the UC honors designation will have a non-honors equivalent course offered at the same frequency (e.g., annually, every other year, etc.), in the same subject area, and at the same grade level.
Sample course descriptions

The purpose of these course excerpts is to give course authors a model for how to construct course overviews, unit overviews, and sample assignments. We encourage all course authors to consistently review the subject area criteria specific to the courses they are submitting.

Registered users can access the repository of A-G approved courses in the A-G CMP and view full course descriptions.

 

 

Online courses

As of April 2019, the University of California has an updated online course publisher policy that supports quality online A-G courses through shared oversight.

  • Visit the Announcements page for the implementation timeline.
  • Visit the FAQs page for answers to specific questions about the updated policy.
NEW Online course publisher policy

Online course publishers can now register to be included in UC's publicly available directory that will serve as a statewide resource to California high schools seeking online courses to fulfill A-G subject requirements for University admissions.

Online course publishers are eligible to register for the directory if they meet at least #1 through #4 of the following criteria:

  1. Author their own curriculum;
  2. Rely on the student’s home high school to report the completed online course (grades and credits earned) on the student’s official high school transcript;
  3. Submit documentation (e.g., letter of intent, purchase agreement) that public high schools in at least two California school districts (or at least two private high schools) have committed to using the online publisher’s courses for their students’ college preparation (i.e., to fulfill A-G subject requirements); and
  4. Agree to maintain at least two years of data on California high school course enrollments for UC audit purposes.
  5. Only for publishers offering instructors with their online courses: Online course publishers that also employ instructors must earn accreditation as a supplementary education center/program from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
Online course publisher directory

Online course publishers that had an active A-G reference list prior to January 2020 now appear in UC’s new publicly available directory of online course publishers. UC no longer maintains individual online course publisher A-G reference lists, and instead maintains a single directory listing all online course publishers registered with UC.

UC's new directory will serve as a statewide resource to California high schools seeking online college-prep courses by identifying all online course publisher options that UC recognizes. Online course publishers no longer submit courses to UC for review and A-G approval. Rather, schools now: 1) certify that the online courses from their selected UC-registered online course publisher(s) are comparable to A-G courses offered at the high school, and 2) self-report the courses to UC so that they are added to the school’s A-G course list along with all the non-online courses they also offer.

Adding online publisher courses to schools' A-G course lists

As of February 1, 2020, the process to add online publisher courses to a school’s A-G course list involves the high school certifying that the online courses from their selected UC-registered online course publisher(s) are comparable to A-G courses offered at the high school, and then self-reporting the courses to UC. Specifically, here are the steps:

NEW: Please check out this video demonstration walking you through the process of self-reporting an online publisher course.

1. CERTIFY: Principal certification of online publisher courses

  • Principal certification is a process by which a California high school can review coursework that is completed through another institution, organization, or program that does not have an A-G list.
  • Principals must certify online publisher courses are comparable to A-G courses offered at the high school. Online courses must meet UC faculty’s A-G course criteria for the relevant subject area.
  • Online courses must also incorporate clear measures for ensuring the integrity of student assessments. Refer to the Quality Matters standards or the National Standards for Quality Online Learning for guidance on student assessments, and especially Standard B in the National Standards for Quality Online Courses, which outlines content guidelines, including explicit expectations for academic integrity.
  • UC faculty expect that principal certification follows a careful review of the course by the principal, department chair, district curriculum director, or other qualified school/district personnel. UC strongly recommends such reviews be conducted using national standards for quality K-12 courses, as issued by Quality Matters or the National Standards for Quality Online Courses.
  • Principals will designate their certification by granting permission for the course(s) to be listed on the student’s official high school transcript, along with credits granted and letter grades earned.

2. SELF-REPORT: High schools self-report online courses from UC-registered online course publishers

  • To add online course publisher courses to their A-G course lists, high schools will self-report principal-certified online publisher courses via the A-G Course Management Portal (CMP) during the annual A-G course submission period (February 1 - September 15).
  • Schools can self-report principal-certified courses from any online course publisher that is listed in UC’s online course publisher directory.
  • Self-reported courses will appear on schools’ A-G course lists along with all the non-online courses they also offer. 
Annual online A-G course verification

UC will conduct a random review of self-reported online publisher courses during the annual A-G course submission period.

  • Online course publishers that authored the randomly identified courses will be asked to submit course descriptions via the A-G Course Management Portal (CMP) to be reviewed using existing A-G course review procedures and A-G course criteria.
  • Courses that do not align with the A-G course criteria will be removed from high schools’ A-G course lists for the upcoming academic year and online course publishers and high schools will be notified. Reasons for removal will be shared for recalibration of principal certification processes, and opportunities for A-G training will be offered, as needed.
  • Online course publishers whose college-prep courses are found more than once to not align with A-G course criteria will be removed from UC’s directory of registered online course publishers. Such publishers will need to have the specific course(s) in question certified by Quality Matters before they may register again to re-join UC's directory.

 

UC's online learning guidelines

Any institution that offers an online course and includes it on their A-G course list must certify in the A-G Course Management Portal that their institution is in compliance with UC's online learning guidelines.

This certification is required when an online course is added to an A-G course list for the first time and must be completed by an institution’s A-G course list manager (or head of institution) in each subsequent year that online courses are included on the institution’s A-G list.

The University's requirements for institutions offering online courses are as follows:

  1. All students should have equal access to all courses for which they are qualified, regardless of socioeconomic status, disabilities, or other factors.
  2. Online courses must be developed by content experts in conjunction with those who understand how best to use technology to enhance student learning.
  3. Online courses used to fulfill admission requirements to the University of California must be aligned with the A-G course criteria provided by the University.
  4. Online courses must provide opportunities for substantial interactions between students and the teacher, and between students and other students.
  5. Student progress and learning are to be assessed frequently through a variety of tools, and feedback to the student must be prompt.
  6. Institutions must provide qualified teachers who are content experts and are capable of supporting their students’ learning throughout the online course. These teachers must receive adequate professional development to effectively support students in their online learning, and be assigned a number of students that allows for the interaction necessary to achieve positive learning outcomes.
  7. Institutions must ensure that the technology infrastructure is adequate for effective learning and that students enrolled in an online course have access to both the necessary hardware and software to be successful.
  8. Institutions must provide students enrolled in online courses with appropriate advice to ensure they have the necessary background and technology to succeed.
  9. Institutions must ensure that students have local access to qualified professionals (teachers, mentors, counselors, etc.) or paraprofessionals who can support their online course participation.
  10. Institutions must have a process in place to ensure that the person submitting material for assessment is actually the student enrolled in the online course.

In addition, the University recommends that online/hybrid institutions offering online courses implement practices and policies found in the National Standards for Quality Online Programs.

UC-endorsed online courses from K-12-focused publishers

If an online course publisher independently seeks and earns Quality Matters (QM) certification for their courses:

  • The registered online course publisher will be spotlighted in UC's public directory.
  • The online course publisher’s QM-certified courses will be exempt from UC’s annual online A-G course verification process.

Annual A-G update checklist

Beginning the process of updating your A-G list early ensures you have plenty of time to update your A-G list before the UC admissions application opens on August 1.

The annual course submission period is February 1 to September 15.

Schools and extended learning programs

School and extended learning program A-G course lists should accurately reflect actual course offerings for each academic year. Errors on an A-G course list can disadvantage prospective University of California (UC) and California State University (CSU) applicants. For more information about the UC freshman admissions process, please visit the UC Admissions website.

Programs

Programs should update their A-G reference lists as early as possible to ensure schools that teach their courses have time to adopt their courses on their A-G course lists before the UC application opens on August 1.

With this in mind, we highly recommend all schools, extended learning programs, and programs begin the process of updating their A-G course lists and reference lists on the A-G Course Management Portal (CMP) at the beginning of Phase 1, which starts on February 1.

Online course publishers

As of February 2020, online publishers no longer maintain A-G lists with UC. This follows our recent announcement of the University of California's updated online course policy.
 
Online publisher courses not on a publisher’s A-G list prior to January 2020, and not already adopted by high schools can be certified, self-reported, and added retroactively by schools starting with the next 2020-21 A-G course submission cycle, which opened February 1, 2020.

 

Annual update checklist

When the annual course submission period opens on February 1, you should log into the A-G CMP and go through the annual update checklist:

  • Verify your institution’s information is up to date
    • A-G course/reference list manager 
    • Head of institution
    • Accreditation
  • Check your institution’s A-G list for accuracy
  • Add and/or revise courses
  • Remove courses
    • Archive courses that will not be taught in the upcoming academic year

If there are no changes to your A-G list, verification of your institution’s information is all that is required.

District/school network reference list management

Districts and school networks can work with their schools on the A-G course submission process to create efficiencies in A-G course submissions and management.

What is a district or school network A-G reference list?

A district or school network A-G reference list consists of all A-G approved courses within the district or school network’s jurisdiction.

District/school network reference list management types

Districts and school networks can change their management type January 1 - January 31 on the My Institution page on the the A-G CMP

Joint management

  • Schools:
    • Are primarily responsible for managing their own A-G course lists
    • Are primarily responsible for writing and submitting courses (school-owned courses)
  • District and school network:
    • Can also write and submit courses on behalf of schools (district-/school network-owned courses)
    • Can add/remove approved district-/school network-owned courses associated with schools and not have to submit a revision to UC

Centralized management

  • District or school network:
    • Is responsible for managing all of its schools' A-G course lists
    • Is primarily responsible for writing and submitting new courses on behalf of its schools
    • Can add/remove approved courses associated with schools and not have to submit a revision to UC
  • Schools:
    • Can also write and forward courses to the district or school network reference list manager to submit to UC
District/school network management features
  • Adding schools to district or school network-owned courses
    Add multiple schools to district or school network-owned courses without submitting a new course for each school.
  • Removing schools from district or school network-owned courses
    Districts and school networks no longer have an archive list; however, they can remove schools from district or school network-owned courses. When the course is going to be offered again, districts and school networks simply add schools to the course without needing to submit an activation.
  • Consolidation
    Combine similar school-owned courses into one district or school network-owned course for greater efficiency on their reference list.
  • Reporting
    Download Excel reports of the course offerings at all of their schools.
  • School archive lists
    Access their schools’ individual archive lists to view/activate courses.

Course revisions

Submit a course revision when there are changes to an approved course, such as subject area and UC honors designation. 

When to revise a course

Submit a course revision when any of the following situations arise:

  • Changes to the A-G subject area, discipline, CTE industry sector and/or CTE pathway
  • Request UC honors designation 

You may be required to update the course description to meet current A-G course criteria and submission requirements.

When a course revision is not approved

If your course revision is not approved, the course will remain on your A-G list as originally approved. You can start and a submit a new revision for review. You are allowed to start and submit as many revisions as you please during the annual submission period (February 1 - September 15).

Course list changes that do not require revisons

You do not need to submit a course revision if you are:

  • Course title change
  • Updating transcript abbreviations or course codes
  • Adding an already approved course to previous academic years


Updating and adding transcript abbreviations and course codes

You do not need to submit a course revision if you’re only updating transcript abbreviations for a course. You can update transcript abbreviations on your Course/Reference List page on the A-G Course Management Portal. Transcripts abbreviations can be made retroactive up to three previous academic years.

Add course to previous academic years

If an approved course was left off a school’s course list for previous academic years, course and reference list managers can add the course retroactively, up to three previous academic years, using the “Add course to previous year” feature when logged on the  A-G CMP home page.

If the course was adopted from an online course publisher or program, the course must be on the online course publisher or program’s reference list for the years you wish to add the course retroactively.