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Common Course Numbering

Information for Staff

Beginning with registration for summer quarter 2008, faculty, staff and students will notice nearly 400 courses offered by the Community Colleges of Spokane have course prefix, course number and/or titles changed because of Common Course Numbering.

Common Course Numbering (CCN) is a state-mandate requiring Washington community and technical colleges to share identical course prefix, number and/or titles. Most of the changed courses are academic transfer courses. Others are professional/technical, but also exist as part of a direct transfer agreement. The intent of the mandate is to assist students who transfer between the community and technical colleges in Washington State.

Courses identified as part of the Common Course Numbering system were reviewed for equivalence by the statewide Articulation and Transfer Council, comprised of academic deans and student services representatives. When an equivalency was unclear, faculty were convened to review the course for CCN determination.

The courses identified as common between community and technical colleges have an "&" after the course prefix, e.g., ENG 101 is now ENGL& 101. The "&" is the common course identifier recognized among Washington state community and technical Colleges. To maintain consistency of course prefixes, any subject area having a common course will use a 4-character prefix and add an "&" suffix to indicate a CCN course. For example, previously at SCC all English classes used the course prefix "ENG." Beginning summer quarter, English classes have the prefix of "ENGL" or if it is a CCN course "ENGL&."

Why is it important for staff to understand CCN?

  • Community Colleges of Spokane have altered nearly 400 course prefix, number and/or titles to accommodate CCN.
  • Student Services staff anticipate an influx of students needing assistance or clarification of CCN.
  • Many students will initially be confused by the course prefix, number or title changes.
  • To lessen student confusion and frustration, it is vital faculty and staff have knowledge of CCN.
  • An informed faculty and staff will lessen the risk of a student mistakenly repeating a class due to the prefix, number and/or title change.
  • Faculty and staff must share consistent information with students regarding CCN and how to accurately choose future courses.
  • All faculty and staff conversations with students regarding educational plans should include revisions due to course numbering changes.
  • SCC faculty counselors are available to assist students with planning their summer and/or fall quarter schedules beginning April 30.
  • The online schedule planning and registration system do NOT audit a student's course selection to determine if it was taken previously under a different prefix, number and/or title.

Questions students may ask about CCN

Does Common Course Numbering only impact current students?

No. If you took classes at SCC or any other Washington State community or technical college prior to summer quarter 2008, or you plan to transfer to another Washington community or technical college in the future, Common Course Numbering may impact your choice of future coursework. You should reference the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES when registering.

Currently enrolled SCC students should use our newly created LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES to make sure they don't accidentally repeat the same course, which may now have a different course name, number and/or title. The LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES is in the quarterly class schedule, the Community Colleges of Spokane 2008-2010 Catalog, and online at

Do I need to be aware of CCN courses when planning courses for my degree or certificate or using the online scheduling planner?

Yes. SCC's LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES contains a master list of all courses that have changed. CCN courses are identified on the transfer degree planning sheets (course prefix followed by an "&"). The name of the course prior to implementation of CCN is also listed, e.g., if English 101 is a required course it is listed on the degree/certificate planning sheets as "ENGL&101 (formerly ENG 101)" for further clarification. CCN also caused SCC to change other course numbers and titles that are NOT common among the state community/technical colleges. These courses are also listed on the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES.

Will the online Schedule Planner block me from registering for a common course I took previously under the old course prefix and number?

No. Online schedule planning and registration does not audit whether the CCN class you select is a class you previously took with a different prefix, number or title. You must use the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES to avoid repeating a class accidentally.

When using the online Schedule Planner, if I enter a course number that is no longer used, what will happen?

When possible, Schedule Planner will substitute what you typed with its best guess at a matching new CCN course. Please refer to the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES for detailed information.

Are common courses with the "&" indicator the only courses which transfer?

No. Many courses not on the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES continue to be considered transferable coursework under the Direct Transfer Agreement between community and technical colleges and four-year institutions in Washington. SCC courses that were transferable prior to common course numbering continue to be transferable as always. In addition, courses that were not transferrable before the change still are not.

It is recommended students check with their receiving institution as the transferability of individual courses is the prerogative of the receiving school.

Will my SCC transcript reflect anything about CCN?

Yes. Courses on your transcript prior to summer quarter 2008 will remain the same. Classes taken summer quarter 2008 and after will use the new prefix, course number and/or title. A notation will be added to your transcript designating the beginning of the Common Course Numbering program as of summer quarter 2008.

Are the courses listed on the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES the only courses that SCC will ever identify as CCN?

No. For a variety of reasons, the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES may change in the future. We have strived to make this document as accurate as possible. However, courses, funding, curricula or policies may change which in turn may require SCC revise the CCN list. For updated CCN information go to

I have more questions. Where can I get help or more answers?

If you have any questions or would like some assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Cathy Shaffer, Transfer Advising Center Manager, 533-8037, or Vicki Bolks, Registrar, 533-7067. The Community Colleges of Spokane Common Course Numbering LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES is available online at CCN information is also printed in the Summer/Early Fall Class Schedule and in the Community Colleges of Spokane 2008-2010 Catalog. Degree and certificate planning worksheets containing CCN changes are available at The State Board of Community and Technical Colleges Common Course Numbering background and database are available at

Not all courses have changed! For a complete list of CCN changes see the LIST OF COURSE NUMBER CHANGES.

Below are examples of some of the CCN changes.

CCS Existing Course Number and Title New Common Course Number with Title Type of Change
A-P 140 Medical Sciences Vocabulary BIOL 140 Medical Sciences Vocabulary CCN change in course number.
A-P 242 Human Anatomy and Physiology BIOL& 241 Human A & P 1 CCN change in course number and title.
A-P 243 Human Anatomy and Physiology BIOL& 242 Human A & P 2 CCN change in course number and title.
ECON 201 Introduction to Macroeconomics ECON& 202 Macro Economics CCN change in course number and title.
ECON 202 Introduction to Microeconomics ECON& 201 Micro Economics CCN change in course number and title.
ED 100 Exploring Teaching EDUC 100 Exploring Teaching CCN change in course number.
Note: All ED are now EDUC or EDUC&.
ENGL 101 English Composition ENGL& 101 English Composition I CCN change in course number and title.
Note: All ENG are now ENGL or ENGL&.
POLSC 111 American National Politics POLS& 202 American Government CCN change in course number and title.
Note: All POLSC are now POLS or POLS&.
SPCH 101 Introduction to Speech Communication CMST& 101 Introduction to Comm CCN change in course number and title.
Note: All SPCH are now CMST or CMST&.

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