Apr 13, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Course Information

USF Graduate Course Information

For a list of specific courses, refer to the Course Descriptions section.

Courses offered for credit by the University of South Florida are part of the State Course Numbering System (see below).  They are listed with the Program or College that offers them.   Courses are numbered based on content, rather than by department or program. This means that a single program may have courses in several different disciplines and may consist of courses having several different prefixes.

The University reserves the right to substitute, not offer, and add courses and programs that are listed in this catalog.

Course Levels:

0 PSAV           College Prep, vocational prep
1-2                   Lower-Level Undergraduate
2-4                   Upper-Level Undergraduate
5-9                   Graduate and Professional


USF Graduate Course Level Variance Definitions

It is expected that the 5000-6000-7000 courses will have distinct syllabi demonstrating different depth and breadth of the subject matter as reflected in the course requirements.  The courses presuppose different audiences, and the intention is to offer them at distinct levels.

  • 5000-5999 Typically Introductory Graduate Level Courses
  • 6000-6999 Typically Master’s Level Courses
  • 7000-7999 Typically Doctoral Level Courses


The Course Prefix

The course prefix is a three-letter designator for a major division of an academic discipline, subject matter area, or subcategory of knowledge.  The prefix is not intended to identify the Department in which a course is offered.    Rather, the content of a course determines the assigned prefix to identify the course.


Abbreviations used in course descriptions:

G Graduate
PR Prerequisite
CI With the consent of the instructor
CC With the consent of the chaiperson of the department or program
CR Co-requisite
DPR Departmental Permit Required
Lec Lecture
Lab Laboratory
Dem Demonstration
Pro Problem
Dis Discussion
ML Master’s Level
GS Graduate Standing
Rpt May be repeated
UL Upper level

No grade, Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory Only


Florida’s Statewide Course Numbering System (SCNS)

Courses in this catalog are identified by prefixes and numbers that were assigned by Florida’s Statewide Course Numbering System (SCNS).  This numbering system is used by all public postsecondary institutions in Florida and by participating nonpublic institutions.  The major purpose of this system is to facilitate the transfer of courses between participating Florida institutions.  Students and administrators can use the online SCNS to obtain course descriptions and specific information about course transfer between participating Florida institutions. This information is at the SCNS website at http://scns.fldoe.org

Each participating institution controls the title, credit, and content of its own courses and recommends the first digit of the course number to indicate the level at which students normally take the course.  Course prefixes and the last three digits of the course numbers are assigned by members of faculty discipline committees appointed for that purpose by the Florida Department of Education in Tallahassee.  Individuals nominated to serve on these committees are selected to maintain a representative balance as to type of institution and discipline field or specialization.

The course prefix and each digit in the course number have a meaning in the SNCS.  The listing of prefixes and associated courses is referred to as the “SCNS taxonomy.”  Descriptions of the content of the courses are referred to as “statewide course profiles.”


Example of Course Identifier:


Level Code

Century Digit

Decade Digit

Unit Digit

Lab Code







English Composition

Lower (Freshman) Level at this institution

Freshman Composition

Freshman Composition Skills

Freshman Composition Skills 1

No Laboratory component in this course

General Rule for Course Equivalencies

Equivalent courses at different institutions are identified by the same prefixes and same last three digits of the course number and are guaranteed to be transferable between participating institutions that offer the course, with a few exceptions, as listed below in Exceptions to the General Rule for Equivalency.

For example, a freshman composition skills course is offered by 84 different public and nonpublic postsecondary institutions.  Each institution uses “ENC 101” to identify its freshman composition skills course.  The level code is the first digit and represents the year in which students normally take the course at a specific institution.  In the SCNS taxonomy, “ENC” means “English Composition,” the century digit “1” represents “Freshman Composition,” the decade digit “0” represents “Freshman Composition Skills” and the unit digit “1” represents “Freshman Composition Skills I.”

In the sciences and certain other areas, a “C” or “L” after the course number is known as a lab indicator.  The “C” represents a combined lecture and laboratory course that meets in the same place at the same time.  The “L” represents a laboratory course or the laboratory part of a course that has the same prefix and course number but meets at a different time or place.

Transfer of any successfully completed course from one participating institution to another is guaranteed in cases where the course to be transferred is equivalent to one offered by the receiving institution.  Equivalencies are established by the same prefix and last three digits and comparable faculty credentials at both institutions.  For example, ENC 1101 is offered at a community college.  The same course is offered at a state university as ENC 2101.  A student who has successfully completed ENC 1101 at a Florida College System institution is guaranteed to receive transfer credit for ENC 2101 at the state university if the student transfers.  The student cannot be required to take ENC 2101 again since ENC 1101 is equivalent to ENC 2101.  Transfer credit must be awarded for successfully completed equivalent courses and used by the receiving institution to determine satisfaction of requirements by transfer students on the same basis as credit awarded to the native students. 

It is the prerogative of the receiving institution, however, to offer transfer credit for courses successfully completed that have not been designated as equivalent.

NOTE: Credit generated at institutions on the quarter-term system may not transfer the equivalent number of credits to institutions on the semester-term system. For example, 4.0 quarter hours often transfers as 2.67 semester hours.

Authority for Acceptance of Equivalent Courses

Section 1007.24(7), Florida Statutes, states:

Any student who transfers among postsecondary institutions that are fully accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education and That participate in the statewide course numbering system shall be awarded credit by the receiving institution for courses satisfactorily completed by the student at the previous institutions.  Credit shall be awarded if the courses are judged by the appropriate statewide course numbering system faculty committees representing school districts, public postsecondary educational institutions, and participating nonpublic postsecondary educational institutions to be academically equivalent to courses offered at the receiving institution, including equivalency of faculty credentials, regardless of the public or nonpublic control of the previous institution.  The Department of Education shall ensure that credits to be accepted by a receiving institution are generated in courses for which the faculty possess credentials that are comparable to those required by the accrediting association of the receiving institution.  The award of credit may be limited to courses that are entered in the statewide course numbering system.  Credits awarded pursuant to this subsection shall satisfy institutional requirements of the same basis as credits awarded to native students.

Exceptions to the General Rule for Equivalency

Since the initial implementation of the SCNS, specific disciplines or types of courses have been expected from the guarantee of transfer for equivalent courses.  These include courses that must be evaluated individually or courses in which the student must be evaluated for mastery of skills and technique.  The following courses are exceptions to the general rule for course equivalencies and may not transfer.  Transferability is at the discretion of the receiving institution.

  1. Courses not offered by the receiving institution
  2. For courses at non-regionally accredited institutions, courses offered prior to the established transfer date of the course in question.
  3. Courses in the 900-999 series are not automatically transferable, and must be evaluated individually.  These include such courses as Special Topics, Internships, Apprenticeships, Practica, Study Abroad, Theses, and Dissertations.
  4. Applied academics for adult education courses.
  5. Graduate courses.
  6. Internships, apprenticeships, practica, clinical experiences, and study abroad courses with numbers other than those ranging from 990-999.
  7. Applied courses in the performing arts (Art, Dance, Interior Design, Music, and Theatre) and skills courses in Criminal Justice (academic certificate courses) are not guaranteed as transferable.  These courses need evidence of achievement (*e.g., portfolio, audition, interview, etc.).

Note: Transferability is at the discretion of the receiving institution.