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Course Nominations

Stanford faculty are constantly adding new courses, and the Program is not sufficiently staffed to keep up with every new course in every relevant department. So we rely on our community of faculty and students to let us know if a course that is not already listed should be made available to students to fulfill a particular requirement in either the Core or a Concentration.

Nominations can be submitted either under your name (if you want a reply) or anonymously, using the Course Nomination Form (Requires a Stanford Google Forms login). You can view course nominations and the decisions about them on the Course Nominations spreadsheet (requires a Stanford login).

Course nominations are considered on approximately a weekly basis over most of the year, and sometimes require consultation with one or more faculty which can slow down the process. Course nominations which might affect your course planning for a given quarter should be submitted well in advance, and at the latest prior to the beginning of classes during the quarter in which a course is offered, to allow time for faculty consultations which may be needed before a decision can be made.

Before submitting a Course Nomination, please search the spreadsheet to see if it has been nominated before, as well as any decisions that have been made about it. Please read the relevant requirement(s) carefully to determine the criteria for courses fulfilling the requirement. The criteria may be stated directly as part of the requirement, but sometimes you will need to infer them by looking at the list of already approved courses. All nominated courses are subject to the policies described under Major Policies (Minimum Units, etc.).

General Guidelines For Course Nominations:

  • The nominations that are most likely to get approved are courses that are new, or in departments outside of those we most often list, and not listed as fulfilling other requirements for the major, or for the Sym Sys M.S. program. These are courses of which our office might not yet be aware, and we appreciate being able to crowdsource these options when appropriate.
  • Most Concentration requirements are more fluid than most Core requirements are. If a list of options is presented as open-ended (e.g. it says that the courses listed are just examples of those that might be acceptable), then Course Nominations for that requirement are more likely to be approved than they would be for a requirement with a fixed list of approved options.
  • Only courses that would be appropriate for students generally in the major or in a Concentration should be nominated.
  • If a course is already listed as fulfilling another requirement for the major, the chances are lower that a nomination will be successful, because that means we are already aware of the course. However, course syllabi change, and a course that was formerly not appropriate may have evolved into one that is, and we may not yet be aware of this, or we may have not fully explored the requirements for which a course is appropriate.

Further information about the decision and notification process is on the Course Nomination form.