Course Restrictions and Procedures


The number of units or credits for full-time status is 12 or more per semester. On average, a student should expect to spend three hours per week in class and in study for each unit of college credit. Students enrolling in 15–16 units per semester are usually committing themselves to more than 40 hours per week of study.

When there are state budget cuts and workload reductions, Southwestern College reserves the right to restrict the maximum units into which students can enroll during the first two weeks of the registration periods. Please contact the Dean of Student Services for current information.

The maximum number of units for which a student may register is 19. Anyone who would like to enroll for more than the maximum per semester must petition for exception with the Dean of Counseling and Student Support Services prior to adding the classes. Prior to filing a petition of exception, a student should consult with a counselor to discuss the advisability of enrolling in additional units. Petitions are filed with Counseling.


Students will not receive credit for more than 30 units of remedial or basic skills courses in the College District. ESL and DSS related courses are exempt from this policy. A student who exhausts this unit limitation will be referred to appropriate noncredit continuing education services with certain exceptions.

Course Overlap

College Procedure and state regulation prohibits a student from enrolling in courses that meet at the same time. The overlapping time between classes is not to exceed 15 minutes per day, no more than 30 minutes per week. A class overlap petition may be submitted to Admissions and Records for approval. The petition should specifically indicate when the time will be made up for one of the two courses, and it should also include the student and instructor signatures. Petitions and information are available in Admissions and the Information Desk at the Chula Vista campus, the Higher Education Centers at National City, Otay Mesa, or San Ysidro, and online at (click on Admissions then click on printable forms.) (AP 4226 Multiple and overlapping enrollments and Title 5, Section 55007)

Field Trips

Throughout the academic year, the College District may sponsor voluntary field trips and excursions in connection with courses. Students should be advised that if they participate in a voluntary field trip or excursion, they will be deemed to have held harmless the College District, its officers, agents, and employees from all liability or claims which may arise out of or in connection with their participation in this activity. Normally, when a class meets off campus, the students will be responsible for arranging their own transportation to those locations (BP 4300).


Throughout the academic year, some activities and classes may meet at off-campus locations. The College will not provide transportation to these sites, and all transportation arrangements are the responsibility of each student enrolled in the activity or in the class. Although College District personnel may assist in coordinating this transportation and/or may recommend travel time, routes, caravanning, etc., these are only recommendations and are not mandatory. The College District is in no way responsible for and does not assume liability for any injuries or losses resulting from this nondistrict-sponsored transportation. If transportation is arranged with another student, that student is not an agent of or driving on behalf of the College District.