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Petition Types 

Please see below for information on petitions.

Note that petitions which do not contain sufficient information will be returned to you for revisions. This will impact how quickly your petition is processed. Please make sure to read through the information below before submitting.


Course Substitution

Common Reasons to Submit a Course Substitution Petition:

    1. You took a chemistry class at another 4-year institution that is not on this list and you want to receive transfer credit for the course.
    2. You took a chemistry class at a community college or college outside of California that is not on this list and want to receive transfer credit for the course
    3. You took a chemistry series (general or organic) at more than one California Community College in two separate districts.
    4. You took a course through another department at UCSD and would like to use that course to fulfill a major requirement.  

Do Not Submit a Course Substitution If:

  • You took a chemistry sequence (general or organic) within the same California CC district. Instead, please message us via the VAC so that we can manually attach the credit to your record.
    • The articulation agreement between the two colleges must be identical on If the articulation agreements are different, you will need to petition to receive chemistry credit.
  • You took a class listed on the Courses Taken Outside of UCSD page
    • Any classes not listed will need to be petitioned.
  • The class you wish to petition is listed on with a note stating "NO COURSE ARTICULATION".
    • This means the CC course has been previously reviewed but deemed inequivalent to a course in the Dept. of Chemistry and Biochemistry at UCSD. Your petition will not be approved.

Important note: if you are requesting credit for multiple classes in one chemistry sequence, please submit one petition. E.g. if you would like to request credit for the general chemistry sequence (CHEM 6A, 6B, 6C, and 7L), submit one petition; do not submit four separate petitions.


Example Request


Please review CHEM 1A (General Chemistry I) from Grossmont College and CHEM 102 (General Chemistry II) from Cal State San Marcos) for equivalency for CHEM 6A, CHEM 6B, CHEM 6C and CHEM 7L at UCSD.       


Already completed 1 full year of general chemistry at 2 different schools in California.

How to Petition

  1. Check that your course is NOT on our Courses Taken Outside of UCSD page. If it is, please contact us via the Virtual Advising Center (VAC) letting us know the course you took and the credit you should receive. 
  2. Submit your request via our online petition tool. Select "Course Substitution" as the petition type on the drop-down menu.
  3. Include all necessary materials and information

Materials to Include

You must upload the syllabus for each course you are asking us to review for equivalency.

A course outline will not suffice. The review panel is looking to see that the topics covered and the hours you spent in lab/lecture are close to equal to the course offered at UCSD. As such, the more detailed and organized information you include, the faster a decision can be made.

The syllabus should contain the following information:*

  • The name of the college you attended.
  • The course number(s).
  • The year and term of the course and if it was a semester or quarter system.
  • The number of hours spent in lecture, recitation, and lab (if applicable).
  • Topics covered.
  • Textbook used

*If your syllabus does not include all of the above information, please include this information in the "Reason" section of your request.

To Rescind a Previously Approved Petition

If you have changed your mind regarding a petition that has already been approved, please send us a message via the Virtual Advising Center.


Reasons to Submit a Pre-Approval Petition:

If you are planning to take a class at another institution and would like to get the course reviewed for equivalency prior to taking the course, submit a Pre-Approval petition.

This includes the following types of institutions:

How to Petition

Submit your request via our online petition tool. Select "Pre-Approval" as the petition type on the drop-down menu.

Please note that if your petition is approved, we cannot attach transfer credit until the course is posted on your academic history. As such, once you have 1. completed the class with a passing grade and 2. the class has been posted to your academic history, you will need to contact the Chemistry and Biochemistry department via the VAC. Only then will we be able to attach the credit to your transfer course. 

Materials to Include

You must upload the syllabus for each course you are asking us to review for equivalency.

Please see Course Substitutions section above for more details.

EAP Coursework

Students are highly encouraged to seek advice in advance on proposed EAP coursework, especially if you have several course options. Instructions for petitioning EAP courses would be the same as outlined above.

Pre-Authorization via EASy

Common Reasons to Submit a Preauthorization Request:

  • You have not met one or more prerequisites for a class within the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department
  • You are a Senior wishing to enroll in a class restricted to students with Freshmen or Sophomore standing
  • You are blocked from enrolling in a class on WebReg because you took the prerequisite course at another institution, and this course is not yet posted to your academic history 
  • You are requesting to add a class after the Add Deadline. See "Late-Adds" section below for more details.

Pre-Authorization requests are not guaranteed to be approved. Note that most prerequisites are strictly enforced and will not be waived. For example, you will not be allowed to waive the CHEM 7L prerequisite for CHEM 43A, or the CHEM 6A prerequisite for CHEM 6B.

How to Petition

Submit your request via the EASy System. Please select the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department.

In most cases, your petition will be routed to the instructor of the course in which you wish to enroll. Once the instructor makes a decision, the Student Affairs office is notified.  If the decision was an approval, we will clear your prerequisites for the course so you can enroll via WebReg.

Materials to Include

This depends on the reason for your request. Usually, a 2-4 sentence explanation for your request will suffice. However, if you are petitioning due to bullet-point #3 above, you must submit an unofficial transcript showing your passing grade in the prerequisite course. 

Prerequisite Check

Note that the Registrar's office checks to make sure students passed their courses that serve as prerequisites for the following quarter. Beginning of week 1 of each quarter, if the student does not have the prerequisite course completed, the Registrar's office will drop the student.  

Major Requirement Waiver

Chemistry/Biochemistry majors will use this petition to request exceptions to a major degree requirement.  

Common Reasons to Submit a Major Requirement Waiver:

  • Request to graduate with 2 "D" grades in upper-division courses for the major
  • Request to use a course taken with a P/NP toward the major (Note: for CHEM 199 to count toward an UD elective, a course substitution petition is needed).
  • Request to graduate with a Major GPA below 2.0.
  • Requests for changes that deviate from the degree audit

Note that Major Requirement Waivers are highly unlikely to be approved, and require extenuating circumstances to be considered. Please contact a Chemistry Academic Advisor to discuss alternate options for your particular situation. 

How to Petition

Submit your request via our online petition tool. Select "Major Requirement Waiver" as the petition type on the drop-down menu.

Materials to Include

This will depend on the reason for your request. Generally, it is wise to write a short statement to support your petition request. You may need additional documentation to support your petition. Please contact a Chemistry Academic Advisor if you would like advice on what to include in your petition.

Late Add

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry strictly adheres to the campus add deadline.

Students wishing to add a CHEM course after the Add Deadline may submit a Late Add Petition via the EASy System. These requests will be routed to the instructor of the course you wish to add. Such requests should be submitted no later than Wednesday of Week 3. 

Only students with extenuating circumstances should submit a petition.  Being on the waitlist for a class does not constitute an exceptional circumstance for a late-add request.  Petition approvals/disapprovals are largely based on the student’s justification for the request, instructor approval, and whether there is space available in the class. 

Exceed Quarterly Unit Maximum

  • During fall, winter, and spring registration, you can enroll in up to 11.5 units during the first pass.  During the second pass you can enroll in up to 19.5 units, including wait-listed courses.
  • Starting the first day of instruction, you may enroll in up to 22 units, including wait-listed courses.
  • Starting on Monday of week 2 of the quarter, you may request to enroll in more than 22 units (see details below).
  • For Summer Session, the limit is 12 units. For more information, see Summer Session Overview.


To be approved to take additional units, you should meet the following criteria:

  • 3.0+ overall UCSD GPA 

How to Petition

Students who wish to exceed their quarterly unit maximum (more than 22 units in the regular academic year and more than 12 units in summer), should submit a Unit Limitation request via the EASy System no earlier than Monday of Week 2. Please select the Chemistry and Biochemistry department. Requests are not guaranteed to be approved.

CHEM 199 for Elective Credit

Chemistry and Biochemistry majors may petition to allow CHEM 199 units to fulfill one major elective. Please see details and restrictions below:

  • units (usually 1 quarter) of CHEM 199 may be petitioned to fulfill one course elective 
  • 8 units (usually 2 quarters) of CHEM 199 may be petitioned to fulfill one lab elective
    •  These units must be with the same PI (i.e. all 8 units were earned while working in the same lab)

How to Petition

Submit a Course Substitution petition via the online petition tool.

Materials to Include

Upload a brief abstract. Your abstract must include all of the following:

  • 1-2 paragraphs describing your research
  • PI's contact information (full name and email address) at the bottom of your abstract
  • PI's signature at the bottom of your abstract 

Please only submit your course substitution petition after you have enrolled in CHEM 199. See details on how to apply here.

Please note that CHEM 199 units used to fulfill an elective may not be used for any other purpose, e.g. a Departmental Honors Application

University (Paper) Petitions

Undergraduate Petition Form

You will need to submit an Undergraduate Petition Form to petition any situation regarding university deadlines and policies. For example, requests to retroactively withdrawal from a course.

Retroactive Drop Petition

Follow the instructions below to request to retroactively drop a Chemistry/Biochemistry course.

  1. Fill out an Undergraduate Petition Form.
  2. Along with your petition form, please submit a statement which addresses an extenuating reason for why you could not drop the course prior to the deadline. For example: a technical glitch or hospitalization that coincided with the drop deadline. It is also highly recommended to submit supporting documentation along with your petition, e.g. a doctor's note (if applicable). Please be aware that without an extenuating reason (and documentation), your petition for a retroactive withdrawal is unlikely to be approved.
  3. Obtain your course instructor's signature on your petition. If approved, move on to step #4.
  4. Submit your petition, along with your statement and any supporting documentation, to The Student Affairs office will then submit your petition to our Vice Chair. If approved, move on to step #5.
  5. Submit your petition, along with your statement and any supporting documentation, to your college's advising office. If approved, your college will route your petition to the Academic Senate for review.

Note: if you are only requesting to retroactively drop a CHEM course (instead of requesting to withdraw from the entire quarter), you will also need to address the specific justification regarding why you are unable to successfully complete this course in particular. Please include any relevant documentation, if applicable (for example, an official note from your doctor, CAPS counselor, or therapist, that supports your statement).

Request to Receive an Incomplete Grade

Work directly with the instructor to obtain an Incomplete. See if you qualify for an Incomplete here. Upon instructor request, you may fill out an Incomplete form and submit a copy to the department and your instructor. However, this form is not required.

Double Major Petitions

Double Major Petitions must contain a quarter-by-quarter plan and a statement of purpose. See here for more details. 

SAP Appeals

Work with Financial Aid office regarding any questions regarding the SAP appeal.

Grade Changes

Grade Changes are arranged between the instructor and student only, and only considered if nonacademic criteria was used to determine grading. 

Other Petition Types

Likely, if your situation is not listed above, you will need to use the Undergraduate Petition Form to make your request. If you are unsure of whether or not to petition or do not know which petition to submit, please contact a Chemistry/Biochemistry or College Academic Advisor.