Course Repetition


A “course repetition” occurs when a student attempts a course and receives an evaluative or non-evaluative symbol for the course (i.e., A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, D+, D, D-, F, W, P/NP, CR/ NC, RD, I) and wishes to enroll again in the same course. Course repetition includes the following components. (Title 5 Section 55040)

Course Repetition to Alleviate Substandard Work (Grade Alleviation)

A student who has earned a substandard grade (D+, D, D-, F, NP, NC) may repeat the course to improve the grade. A student may attempt a course a maximum of three times. To alleviate substandard work, a “course attempt” occurs when a student receives an evaluative or non-evaluative symbol for the course (D+, D, D-, or F or W or NP/NC). All course attempts in a student’s academic record count toward this enrollment limitation. The first or first and second substandard grades and units are excluded in computing the student’s GPA. The grade and units for the third or final attempt are included in the student’s GPA. (Title 5 Section 55042)

Course Repetition as a Result of a Withdrawal

A “W” counts as a course attempt. A student may attempt a course a maximum of three times. All course attempts in a student’s academic record count toward this enrollment limitation.

A Student Earning a Satisfactory Grade May Not Enroll in The Same Course Again Unless One of The Following Exceptions Applies

  • Significant Lapse of Time. A student may enroll for one additional attempt if he/she successfully completed the course and a significant lapse of time of more than 36 months has occurred since the student was awarded a grade in the course AND the district has established a recency prerequisite for the course or an institution of higher education to which the student seeks to transfer has established a recency requirement that applies to the course. (Example: Biology 250 was completed with a grade of C in Fall 2020. In Fall 2023 the student is preparing to apply to a nursing program that requires Biology 250 to be completed within the last three years. The student is eligible to repeat the course in Spring 2024 with documentation of the recency requirement.) The grade and units from the first course completion will be disregarded in computing the GPA. (Title 5 Section 55043)
  • Extenuating Circumstances. A student may enroll for one additional attempt only if documentable extenuating circumstances exist that match the dates of the course for the previous enrollment. Examples of extenuating circumstances are natural disaster, accident, illness, or other extraordinary documentable experience beyond the student’s control. (Title 5 Section 55045)
  • Students with Disabilities Repeating a Special Class. A student with a verifiable disability may repeat a special class for students with disabilities any number of times based on achieving progress in the class and an individualized determination that such repetition is required as a disability-related accommodation for that student. (Title 5 Section 55040)
  • Legally Mandated Course. A student may repeat a course determined to be legally mandated and required by statute or regulation as a condition of paid or volunteer employment or licensure. A student must provide evidence that the course is legally mandated or that licensure standards require course repetition. Such courses may be repeated for credit any number of times. (Title 5 Section 55000)
  • Occupational Work Experience (CCOP). A student may enroll multiple times up to 16 units of credit in cooperative work experience education.
  • Variable Unit Courses. A student may enroll in a variable unit course as many times as necessary to complete one time the entire curriculum and unit value of the course. However, a student may not repeat any portion of a variable unit course that has already be completed and evaluated. It is not necessary to submit this form to repeat a course under this circumstance as your registration is not blocked and you may enroll in the remaining unit value not yet attempted. (Title 5 Section 55044).

Courses Related in Content

Course Attempts within Subject Families: District policy limits enrollment of students in courses that are active participatory courses in physical education/kinesiology, and visual or performing arts. In this regard, the colleges have established “families” of similar educational activities.

Kinesiology activity courses and some visual and performing arts have established “families” and are subject to enrollment limitations. Although a course cannot be repeated, a student may attempt up to four courses in a subject “family.”  Some subject families offer more than four courses but a student may enroll in a maximum of four courses within a family.

All course attempts in a student’s academic history count toward this enrollment limitation within a “family” of courses. This limitation applies even if the student receives a substandard grade or a “W.”  Enrollment limitations are monitored district wide for a subject “family.”

New students are advised to enroll in the beginning level of a course family and be placed by their instructor upon assessment. Continuing students who have previously taken a course within a family must progress to the next level. For a list of Kinesiology and Dance “families” go to the College Catalog under Course Descriptions/Kinesiology. (Title 5 Section 55040)

Repeatable Courses – Three Types of Courses May Be Designated as Repeatable

These courses are identified as repeatable in the college catalog (Title 5 Section 55041).

  • Intercollegiate Athletics. Courses in which student athletes enroll to participate in an organized sport sponsored by the district or a conditioning course which supports the organized competitive sport may be designated as repeatable. (Title 5 Section 55040/55041)
  • Intercollegiate Academic or Vocational. Competition Courses that are specifically for participation in non-athletic competitive events between students from different colleges may be designated as repeatable. The course must be tied to the student’s participation in the competition. The event must be sanctioned by a formal collegiate or industry governing body.
  • Required by CSU or UC For Completion of Bachelor’s Degree. Repetition of the course is required by CSU or UC for completion of the bachelor’s degree. Courses are limited to four attempts and this enrollment limitation applies even if the student receives a substandard grade or a “W.” (Title 5 Section 55041)

Audit Policy (BP 6.31)

The SMCCCD allows auditing of courses with the exception of courses in programs that require special preparation and/or programs where admission is on a limited basis. Enrollment as an auditor is a manual process and must be completed at the Office of Admissions and Records within the week after the close of the late registration period.

A student may audit a course only under the following circumstances. 

  • The student must have previously enrolled for credit for the maximum number of times allowed for a particular course.
  • The instructor of record of the course must approve the enrollment as an auditor. An instructor is not required to take auditors.
  • The student must be in academic good standing to audit any course.
  • If the course is a variable unit class, the student must enroll as an auditor for the maximum number of units available.
  • The student must enroll as an auditor by completing and submitting the Audit Course Request immediately following the published late registration period and pay the auditing fee.