College has its own set of special words and concepts that you may not have encountered before. Following is a glossary of frequently used words for your reference. Many of them also have links to additional information elsewhere in these counseling pages.

Academic Probation: While you are taking classes at Cosumnes River College, the school evaluates both your performance (grades) and the progress you are making toward the completion of your goals. If you have completed 12 or more semester units and your grade point average (GPA) is below 2.0 ("C"), you will be placed on Academic Probation. You may be removed from probation when your grade point average is raised above 2.0. (See also Progress Probation)

Academic Renewal: (Grade Repair) If your academic record includes old grades ("D" or "F") that do not represent your current level of academic success, you may ask the college to ignore this information when it computes your grade point average. See the counseling center for additional information.

Certificate: A certificate is an award for the successful completion of 12 to 42 units in a vocational technical program.

Class Schedule: This publication is available prior to registration for fall and spring semesters and also for summer session. It lists each course title and section offered, including the units, course number, days, time, building and room number, and the instructor's name for each section. Class schedules can be purchased from the business office, admissions/records office, or the campus bookstore.

College Catalog: Published each year, the catalog helps you understand program requirements and lists all courses you can take at Cosumnes River College (not just the ones offered in one particular semester). You will also find information on majors, admission requirements, regulations, grades, and transfer requirements. It is a valuable document (on sale at the same locations as the class schedule) you will need to plan your college education.

Co-requisite: Some courses require that you take another course the same semester; we call this a "co-requisite." (See also Pre-requisite)

Course: A course is the name of a class, such as English 1A (College Composition) or Sociology 5 (Minorities in America). The class schedule lists courses offered each semester and how many sections of the course are offered as well.

Credit/No Credit: This option allows you to receive credit for a class without having your final grade for that class averaged into your GPA. The intent is to encourage you to explore fields of study outside of your major. Courses that may be taken for credit/no credit are listed in your class schedule. Note: Once you select this option and submit a request you cannot change your mind and request a letter credit later.

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Elective: Some courses are required for particular major or general education. Other courses, however, are "electives," meaning that you, yourself, "elect" (choose) to take them.

Full-time student: One who is enrolled in 12 or more units for the semester.

General Education: A group of courses in many different subject areas that are required to meet transfer or graduation requirements. These courses are listed in the college catalog. A counselor can also explain general education requirements to you.

Grades: All grades have a numerical value; that is: "A"=4.0, "B"=3.0, "C"=2.0, "D"=1.0, "F"=0. A grade point is the numerical value multiplied by the number of units. For example, if you get a "C" in a three-unit class, the result is 3 (units) multiplied by 2 (the value of the "C" grade), for a total of 6 grade points.

Grade-Point Average (GPA): Once you've calculated the numerical value of each letter grade, (see grades), you can calculate a grade-point average. Add the total points of all the semester's courses you took, divided by the number of units. Let's say you took 12 units (four 3-unit classes). At the end of the semester, you received an "A" in one 3-unit class, a "B" in two others, and a "C" in a third. The "A" gives you 12 grade points, each "B" grade is 9 grade points (18 total), and the "C" is 6 grade points. That adds up to 36 grade points. Then divide by 12 units and your grade-point average (GPA) is 3.0, or a straight "B" average.

Lower Division: Courses at the freshman and sophomore levels of college work.

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Major: A major is the name of a group of courses you must take in order to meet the requirements for graduation in a specific field of study. For example, you might major in mathematics, nursing, liberal arts, legal assisting or a number of other programs listed in the college catalog. Each of these majors has required courses that are outlined in the catalog. A grade of "C" or better is required to fulfill a major requirement at Cosumnes River College.

Minor: A secondary subject area in a student's program, not quite as comprehensive as the major.

Part-time Student: One who takes fewer than 12 units for the semester.

Placement Test: Also known as an assessment test, this is used to determine your skill levels in math, English writing and reading. The results are used along with other important information to help you select a course for which you have the necessary skills for success.

Prerequisite: A course that you must take before you can register for another (usually more advanced) course. For example, before you can take Calculus I, you must have completed Mathematics 29 with a grade of "C" or better. (See also Co-requisite)

Progress Probation: You may be placed on progress probation if half of the units you have taken at CRC result in Withdrawal ("W"), Incomplete ("I") or No Credit ("NC"). (See also Academic Probation)

Section: This is another name for a class that meets on a specific day and time. Many courses (English 1A, for example) are offered at different times and days by different instructors. Each time-and-day possibility is a "section." When you choose a class from the class schedule, you are registering for a section.

Semester: The academic year (August-June) is divided in half, resulting in two 18-week periods called semesters. Grades are given at the end of each semester.

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Transcript: A transcript is an official copy of a your academic record. You will need a transcript when you transfer to another college or university, or to prove to an employer that you have completed certain required courses.

Transfer: When you transfer, you go to another college or university for advanced education or training. A "transfer course" is any course acceptable at another college or university. These courses are usually numbered 1-49 at Cosumnes River College.

Unit: College credit is measured in terms of the "unit." You earn one unit by performing three hours of class work per week for one semester, which includes work in the classroom or lab and in outside study. Most lecture classes are three units, which might include three hours in class plus six hours of outside study and preparation time. A full-time student carries 12 or more units per semester, a part-time student takes fewer than 12 units.

Upper Division: Courses at the junior and senior levels of college work.

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Where to Find Us

Location: Library Building, L-200 (2nd floor)

Mon - Thurs 8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Friday 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Phone: (916) 691-7316
Fax: (916) 691-7445


Elk Grove Center

We now have services available at our Elk Grove Center location. For more information visit the Elk Grove Center webpage.