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Banner Course Identification (Course ID) help

How is a course identified in the Schedule of Classes?

When students are looking at courses offered for a particular term, they will see that a course offering is uniquely identified through a combination of three elements:  the Course Subject, the Course Number, and the Section Number.  Each of these three elements is described below.

(There is another, less descriptive, unique identifier called the CRN, which is described on our CRN help page.)

What is the course subject?

The course subject typically corresponds to the teaching department (or a portion thereof) of the course.  It is coded in our Banner student information system with a 2-, 3-, or 4-character code.  See our Course Subject help page for more details on this code and what it stands for.

What is the course number?

The course number is a 3-digit number plus, in some cases, a single letter suffix.  (The letter suffix may indicate that this course is a part of a larger sequence of related courses, or it may identify topics or subject areas specified in courses such as readings or special problems.)  The course number identifies the course and indicates the classification of the course according to the following scheme:

  • 100 to 199 – typically for freshmen
  • 200 to 299 – typically for sophomores
  • 300 to 399 – typically for juniors
  • 400 to 499 – typically for seniors and/or graduate students
  • 500 to 699 – typically for graduate and professional students

In reference to undergraduate students, you may sometimes see 100 to 299 course numbers referred to as "lower division" courses and 300 to 499 course numbers referred to as "upper division" courses.  Bachelor's degree requirements include a minimum number of "upper division" courses (as noted in chapter 2 of the appropriate Undergraduate Catalog).

In reference to graduate students, most 599 course numbers designate thesis work, most 600 course numbers designate dissertation work, and most 601 course numbers designate continuing enrollment.

Course numbers between 001 and 099 are unique situations that cannot otherwise fit into the above scheme (or are reserved for certain Music courses).

What is the section number?

The section number categorizes course offerings as follows:

  • 001 to 099 – on-campus section meeting 13 to 16 weeks
  • 101 to 199 – on-campus section meeting 9 to 12 weeks
  • 201 to 249 – on-campus section meeting 8 weeks
  • 250 to 299 – on-campus section meeting 7 weeks
  • 301 to 399 – on-campus section meeting 4 to 6 weeks
  • 401 to 499 – on-campus section meeting 2 or 3 weeks
  • 501 to 599 – on-campus section meeting less than 2 weeks
  • 700 to 799 – typically independent study, research, or internship section
  • 800 to 809 – typically travel study section
  • 840 to 849 – online section¹ that is part of the online MBA program
  • 900 to 939 – off-campus (on-site) section
  • 940 to 949 – online section¹ that is part of a particular online program
  • 950 to 959 – online section¹ that is not part of a particular online program
  • 95A to 95Z – online (site-specific) section¹ offered to limited groups of students
  • 980 to 989 – hybrid online section¹ that is mostly online but includes an on-campus component

Introductory courses that are required (such as ENGL 101) may have so many on-campus sections offered in a term that not all of the section numbers properly follow the above pattern.

1 More specific information about online sections may be found in this document.  Such details about online section numbers will be useful in determining the student's eligibility to register for such sections.