Guidelines for Cross-Listed Courses

For members of the Undergraduate Affairs Group, Faculty of Arts, University of Waterloo

The Faculty of Arts has about 300 cross-listed courses currently in the Undergraduate Calendar. A cross- listed course is offered for registration under more than one subject indicator. Students may use any one of the course codes (subject indicator + course number) towards their degree requirements. All the registrarial divisions of a cross-listed course are held together, and all students are treated as members of the same class.

UGAG welcomes submission of proposals for new cross-listed courses or new cross-lists for existing courses. It is expected that consultation will occur before submission, and that consultation will periodically be renewed to ensure that the course still meets the objectives of the cross-list.

In addition, we propose the following criterion: that the course take up, in a significant fashion, shared content, tools, or methods between the subject areas involved. This is a requirement for any proposed cross-list and cross-lists will not be approved, whatever their other merits, without it. UGAG members should address how the course fulfills this criterion in the rationale and be prepared to speak to the requirement at the meeting at which the cross-list is proposed.

Other factors may support the adoption of a cross-list and can be cited in the rationale or spoken of at the meeting. These include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Many Arts departments are small and making them larger is neither affordable nor warranted. To ensure that courses are available to students in majors and with interests in the topics, it is sometimes appropriate to cross-list. A cross-list may be supported where students need courses to fulfill plan requirements, but numbers do not justify a section and therefore instructor resources.
  • Interdisciplinary programs may use cross-lists to build their plans. A cross-list may be supported because it contributes to the range of content, tools, and methods covered by the program.
  • Course owners may seek a broader audience for their courses through cross-lists. A cross-list may be supported because it appeals to a broader audience.