UCSD students hoping to take physics at another UC should contact PHYSICS through VAC for equivalency information (we do not use petitions for this).

The Undergraduate Student Petition.pdf is the most common petition students will use in Physics. Students usually use this petition to:

  • Request for Physics course equivalency (aka "Transfer" credit). Refer to Question 2 (Q2) on the Transfer Courses page.
  • Request to use a course towards a major requirement that is not automatically allowed (i.e. programming course, upper division elective, etc.). For Physics majors only.
  • Request to repeat a course for a third time.

Completing a Petition in Physics

All parts of the petition form must be completed in pen.

  1. Download and print the Undergraduate Student Petition.pdf
  2. Read the instructions at the top of the form and check the appropriate box.
  3. Fill in the personal information section. Be sure to include your UCSD email address on the form.
  4. Complete the "If UCSD course" lines only if the course you are requesting a review of is a course that you took at UCSD. Otherwise, leave these lines blank.
  5. In the "REQUEST" section, state your specific request:
    • "For Phys. 210, which I took at Newton College, to count as Phys. 2A at UCSD."
    • "For the combination of Phys. 211 and Phys. 212, both of which I took at Bohr's College, to count as Phys. 2B and 2BL at UCSD."
    • "For Phys. 213, which I took at Bohr's College, in combination with Phys. 195, which I took at Rutherford College, to count as Phys. 2C and 2CL at UCSD."
    • "For MAE 8, which I took at UCSD, to count towards the programming requirement for my physics major."
    • "I request permission to repeat Phys. 2D for a third time."
    • For MAE 160, which I took at UCSD, to count as a restricted elective for my physics major."
    • "For Phys. 210, which I took at the Univ. of Scottsdale through EAP, to count as Phys. 110A at UCSD."
    • "For my A-Level credit to count as Physics 1A at UCSD."
  6. In the "REASON FOR REQUEST" section, provide a justification for your request:
    • "The breadth, depth, and scope of Phys. 210 matches Phys. 2A at UCSD."
    • "MAE 8 appears on the list of approved courses for the Programming Requirement on the UCSD Physics Department website."
  7. Sign and date the form.
  8. Attach a complete** syllabus for each course you want reviewed. The syllabus should be from the exact term in which you were enrolled; at the very least, the syllabus must be from within the academic year in which you were enrolled. If you cannot locate the syllabus from the time when you took the course you will need to contact the school where you took the course and obtain a copy of the syllabus to submit with your petition. For PRE-REVIEWS, submit a copy of the syllabus from the current academic year. Note: Course descriptions from a school's website or catalog are not sufficient for review. For A-Level Credit, submit a copy of your exam scores instead of a syllabus.

    **A "complete" syllabus is one that includes the following info. pertaining to the term when the student was enrolled: instructor info., course info., textbook info., grading criteria, types of exams and grade and/or total points/percentage breakdown, schedule detailing what material is covered during each class session, schedule of labs for the term and info. about what each lab will be about, etc.). In some cases, portions of the syllabus may be found online (as many instructors are now posting syllabus information on a course website in lieu of providing this information via hard-copy). In such cases, the student is permitted to print and combine the documents that, together, would constitute the complete syllabus. Course outlines are not the same as course syllabi and are not accepted in lieu of (or as part of) syllabi for physics equivalency petition reviews.

Submitting petitions in physics

Petitions should be submitted to the Undergraduate Advising Office, located in Mayer Hall Addition, room 2581. If the office is closed when you arrive, simply slide your petition packet under the door.

Petitions can also be sent via postal mail. Send to:

Undergraduate Advisor
Department of Physics, UCSD
2581 Mayer Hall Addition
La Jolla, CA 92093-0319

Physics does not accept petitions/materials in electronic format at this time (including faxes).

Incomplete Petition Packets submitted to Physics

Incomplete petition packets will be returned to the student, unprocessed.

The Review Process in Physics

Petition review sessions take place on Thursdays during weeks 3-10 (weeks 3-5 for each summer session) and include only complete packets submitted by Wednesday, the day before the review session. Students are notified of the results through the Virtual Advising Center (VAC) by 3:30pm on Friday, the day after the review (updates to student records are made prior to notification of results).

A copy of an approved/denied petition will be uploaded to the student’s VAC record. The original petition form and all supplementary materials will be discarded. Please do not submit original copies of supplementary documents. Instead, please make a copy of any document you want to keep, and submit the copies with your petition.

Have a question about petitions in physics that is not addressed above? Please contact the Staff Undergraduate Advisor through the Virtual Advising Center (VAC).