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UC Santa Barbara General CatalogUniversity of California, Santa Barbara

Credit by Examination

Other Pages In Examinations

Students currently registered in any regular term who by reason of advance preparation believe themselves to be adequately grounded in the materials and principles of a given course may petition for credit by examination for any course offered at UCSB, or in any other subject appropriate for inclusion in a University curriculum. If credit is sought in a course not regularly offered at UCSB, the petition must be approved by the Undergraduate Council. The petition for Credit by Exam is located on the Office of the Registrar website:

Because of the nature of graduate degree requirements, the credit by examination option is not normally used by graduate students.  Graduate level courses cannot be completed through the credit by examination option.

Students may elect, at the time their petition is initiated, to take the examination on the Passed/Not Passed basis, provided they are eligible for enrollment in a course on that basis during that term and P/NP grading is offered for the course, and they will be assigned the grade they earned in the examination. Failure to pass the examination will be recorded as an F, NP, or U, whichever is appropriate, in the student’s record.

Certain courses, by reason of special features of the instruction, such as extensive laboratory work, may not be considered appropriate for obtaining credit by examination. In addition, credit by examination will not be approved in the following circumstances: (1) if the student has had prior instruction in the topic (including during high school), (2) for the purpose of repeating a course, (3) for courses in subjects in which the student has completed more advanced work, (4) for elementary and intermediate courses in a student’s native language, or (5) for granting credit for a course which the student has attended or audited. All petitions for credit by examination must be approved by the dean of the appropriate college in advance of the date of the examination. Accordingly, each petition for credit by examination must be submitted to the dean at least three weeks prior to the examination. Ordinarily, credit by examination is limited to 12 units.