AA/AS Degree Requirements

Directions to students: Use Degree Works in WebSMART to view how your course work applies to associate degrees and other educational goals.

Students who have completed coursework at colleges/universities outside the San Mateo County Community College District must request an Official Transcript Evaluation within the first semester of attendance to determine how prior coursework can be applied to AA/AS and AA/AS-T degrees, CSUGE, and IGETC requirements. Request an official transcript evaluation from the SMCCCD Transcript Evaluation Service in WEBSMART. Information about the Transcript Evaluation Service is available on the Transcript Evaluation website.

A. Residence

A minimum of 60 degree applicable units are required. At least 12 units must be completed at College of San Mateo. 

B. Scholarship

A minimum grade point average of 2.0 is required in all degree applicable coursework. A grade of C or higher is required in all courses applied to the major. Some subgroups of coursework may require a grade of C or higher or a 2.0 minimum cumulative GPA.

C. Competency Requirements

C1: Math/Quantitative Reasoning - Math 120 Intermediate Algebra

May be satisfied with any of the following:

  • Completion of SMCCCD math placement test with eligibility for a  math course higher than Math 120
  • Grade of C or higher in Math 120, or in both Math 122 and Math 123
  • Score of 3, 4 or 5 on College Board Advanced Placement Tests (AP): Calculus AB, or Calculus BC, or Statistics
  • Score of 4 or higher on International Baccalaureate Exam (IB): Mathematics HL
  • Grade of C or higher in a course equivalent to Math 120 taken outside the SMCCCD*
  • Grade of C or higher in a course with a prerequisite of intermediate algebra or higher*

C2: English - English 100/105

May be satisfied with any of the following:

  • Grade of C or higher in English 100 or 105
  • Score of 3, 4, or 5 on one of the following College Board Advanced Placement Tests (AP): English Language and Composition, English Literature and Composition
  • Grade of C or higher in a course equivalent to English 100 taken outside the SMCCCD*

C3: Information Competency

May be satisfied with any of the following:

  • ENGL 100 or 105 if completed FALL 2015 or later.
  • Grade of C/P in one of the following CSM courses: NURS 242, LIBR 100, BUSW 530, CIS 110, DGME 100, DGME 102, MATH 145, COUN 129
  • Grade of C/P in LSCI 100/Skyline or LIBR 100/Cañada
  • Score of 70 percent or higher on the CSM Information Competency Proficiency Exam. For more information on the exam see Information Competency at CSM.
  • Grade of C or higher in an equivalent course taken outside of the SMCCCD that meets CSM standards for information competency. Use the Information Competency Equivalency Petition.

*Courses taken outside of SMCCCD must be completed at a college or university within the United States with CSM approved accreditation. For C1/Math and C2/English, the student must seek course approval and provide verification of course equivalency using the CSM Course Prerequisite Equivalency Form or the Official Transcript Evaluation Service on the Transcript Evaluation website.

D. Major

Major requirements are a minimum of 18 units. Use the CSM Catalog for the courses required for each major. Either 12 units or 50 percent of the units applied to the major, whichever is fewer, must be completed at College of San Mateo. A grade of C or higher is required for each course applied to the major. Courses applied to the major may also be applied to meet general education requirements.

Specific requirements for majors may be found under Degrees & Certificates.

E. General Education

Area E1: American History & Institutions, CA State & Local Government

This requirement may be satisfied by completing one of the three options below (3-9 units).  Option 1 courses are those that have been approved to meet two of the three AH&I areas—US-1 US History, US-1 US Constitutions, and US-3 CA State & Local Government:

Option 1: PLSC 200 (US-2, US-3) or PLSC 210 (US‑1, US‑2) or HIST 201 (US-1, US-2) or HIST 202 (US‑1, US‑2) or HIST 260 (US-1, US-2)

Option 2: Select one of the options in Group 1 and one course in Group 2:

Group 1: American History and Institutions
PLSC 215, or HIST 100 & 102, or HIST 101 & 102, or HIST 201 & 202, or HIST 201 & 260, or HIST 202 & 260
Group 2: CA State and Local Government
ETHN 101 or HIST 310 or PLSC 310

Option 3: Complete the U.S. History & American Ideals, U.S. Constitution, California State and Local Government requirement as approved by CSU to meet the CSU graduation requirement at a California Community College or a California State University campus.

If a student selects Option 2 or Option 3 and uses two classes to meet the Area E1 requirement, one of the courses may also be applied to meet associate degree General Education requirement under Area E5 where the course appears (either E5b or E5c).

AREA E2: Language and Rationality (6 to 9 units)

a) English Composition - 3 units

If using ENGL 100  or 105 for area 2a, you must select a different course to meet area 2b.

ENGL 838, 848, 100, 105; ESL 400                 

b) English, Literature, Speech Communication - 3 units

Courses marked with an asterisk (*) can also be used to meet 2c which allows completion of 2a, 2b, and 2c with 6 units of coursework.

COMM 110*, 130*, 140*, 150, 170, 171; ENGL 100*, 105*, 110*, 161, 162, 163, 165*; ESL 400*; DGME 128; LIT. 101*, 105*, 113*, 115*, 150*,151*, 155*, 156*, 201*, 202*, 220*, 231*, 232*, 251*, 266*, 430*                       

c) Communication and Analytical Thinking - 3 units

Courses marked with an asterisk (*) can also be used to meet 2b which allows completion of 2a, 2b, and 2c with 6 units of coursework.

ART 200; BUS. 115, 295, 401; CIS 110, 125, 135,  137, 138, 254, 255, 278; COMM 110*, 130*, 140*; DGME 102; ELEC 445; ENGL 100*, 105*, 110*, 165*; ESL 400*; LIT. 101*, 105*, 113*, 115*, 150*, 151*, 155*, 156*, 201*, 202*, 220*, 231*, 232*, 251*, 266*, 430*; MATH 120, 123, 125, 130, 145, 190, 200, 222, 225, 241, 251; PHIL 103, 160, 175 ,200; PSYC 120

Courses that are used to meet Area 2a, 2b, and/or 2c cannot be used to satisfy other general education requirements.

AREA E3: Health Science

Effective Fall 2010, Health Science is no longer an associate degree requirement.

AREA E4: Physical Education Activity Classes (1 to 2 units - two activity classes)

Students must complete two activity courses in Physical Education or Dance. Lecture courses in Physical Education will not satisfy this requirement.

This requirement may be waived for students in any of the following categories:  

  • Graduates of accredited community colleges or other accredited colleges and universities.
  • Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces with one or more years of active service.
  • Persons excused for medical reasons. Approved medical waiver must be filed in the Office of Admissions & Records.

AREA E5: Additional General Education Requirements (12 units)

A 3 unit course in each area is required. Courses listed in multiple areas cannot be used in more than one area.

a) Natural Science

ANTH 125 , 127*; ASTR 100, 101*,103*, 115, 125, 200; BIOL 100, 102, 110, 130, 132*, 145, 184, 195*, 210, 220, 230, 240, 250, 260, 310; CHEM 100, 192, 210, 220, 231, 232, 250, 410, 420; ELEC 111; GEOG 100; GEOL 100, 101*; OCEN 100; PALN 110, 111*; PHYS 100, 210, 220, 250, 260, 270; PSYC 105, 220

*These are one unit lab courses and combined with other one-unit lab courses do not meet the 3 unit requirement in Natural Science.

b) Social Science

ADMJ 100; ANTH 110, 180, 350; BUS. 100, 125; DGME 100 , 102; ECON 100, 102; ETHN 101, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107. 108, 109, 122, 300; GEOG 110, 150; GBST 101, 102; HIST 100, 101, 201, 202, 260, 310; KINE 103, 104; PLSC 100, 110, 130, 150, 200, 210, 215, 310; PSYC 100, 105, 110, 120, 200, 201, 220, 225, 300, 301, 310, 320, 330, 410; SOSC 310, 321; SOCI 100, 105, 110, 121, 141

c) Humanities

ANTH 180; ARCH 100; ART 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 204, 205, 207, 350, 351, 401; ASL 100, 110; CHIN 111, 112, 121, 122, 131, 132 , 134, 140, 211, 212, 221; COMM 170, 171; DANC 100; DGME 215; ENGL 110; ETHN 104, 105, 106, 265, 288, 585; FILM 100, 120, 121, 122, 123, 130, 135, 140, 145, 153, 200, 215; GBST 101,102; HIST 100,101,201,202,260,310; KINE 200; LIT. 101, 105, 113, 115, 221, 150. 151, 155, 156, 201, 202, 220, 231, 232, 251, 266, 430; MUS. 100, 131, 202, 210, 250, 275; PHIL 100, 160, 175, 244, 300; SPAN 110, 112, 120, 122, 131, 132, 140

d) Career Exploration and Self-Development

ADMJ 100; ARCH 666; ART 200; BIOL 126, 127, 128, 310; BLDG 700; BUS. 201, 315, 316, 317; BUSW series; CIS 110; HSCI 100; COUN 111, 112, 114, 115, 120 , 121, 122 , 128 , 129, 240; CRER 126, 127, 155; COMM 110, 115, 130, 140, 150; DGME 101, 103, 104, 211, 212, 230; DRAF 110, 120; ENGR 100; ELEC 445; ETHN 122, 123; FIRE 715; IDST 110; MUS. 296, 297; KINE 101, 102, 106, 110, 130, 135, 136, 201, 202, 301; LCTR 240; LIBR 100; MGMT 100; NURS 666, 242; PHYS 126, 127, 128; PSYC 310, 320, 330; R.E. 100; SOSC 301, 333

This requirement may be satisfied by completing one of the three options below  (3-9 units). Option 1 courses are those that have been approved to meet two of the three AH&I areas—US-1 US History, US-1 US Constitutions, and US-3 CA State & Local Government: