Course Renumbering

Instituting a New Course Numbering Scheme

In the spring of 2009, the Office of Curriculum and Course Development formed a committee consisting of faculty and administrators from Arts & Sciences and the Pratt School of Engineering to consider and develop a new numbering scheme for courses offered by Arts & Sciences departments and programs (including the Nicholas School of the Environment and the Sanford School of Public Policy), the Pratt School of Engineering, and the Graduate School.

It had become apparent that the current course numbering scheme was no longer meeting the needs of a growing university with an increasing number of interdisciplinary, cross-listed courses. The committee created a new numbering scheme that would:

  • be comprehensible and transparent to students, faculty, and the outside world,
  • allow departments / programs to more clearly indicate course levels, sequencing, and logic of the curriculum,
  • be consistent across departments and programs in Arts & Sciences, to include the Nicholas School of the Environment, the Sanford School of Public Policy, the Pratt School of Engineering, and the Graduate School.

The new numbering scheme was presented to and approved by the Arts & Sciences Council and the respective School Deans in May, 2009.

In the 2009-2010 academic year, all departments and programs within the above schools were given guidelines and asked to renumber all courses. During the 2010-2011 academic year, the new numbers were reviewed and entered into all systems. All university websites, brochures, advising materials were revised to reflect both new and old numbers by the end of January, 2012.

The new numbers became effective for the Fall 2012 semester. Students registered in Spring 2012 for fall 2012 courses under their new numbers. Beginning in the Fall 2012 Duke transcripts for all continuing students contain a note regarding the change in course numbers. In addition, the transcript guide, printed on the back of each transcript, contains an explanation of the change in course numbering scheme. Please also note that the new course numbers appear from Fall 2012 forward. All coursework taken prior to that semester is listed under the current course numbers.

This website serves as the main resource for information regarding the implementation of the new course numbering scheme. Questions should be directed to Dean Ingeborg Walther, Director of the Office of Curriculum and Course Development.

Old and New Course Numbering Schemes

Master List of Old & New Numbers

Old Course Numbering Scheme



(1-49 primary for first year students)

100-199 Advanced-level
200-299 Seniors and graduate students
300-399 Graduate students only

New Course Numbering Scheme (effective Fall 2012)

0-99 Advanced Placement credit, House Courses; First-Year Seminars; First-Year Writing; Registrar/Department special purpose
100-199 Introductory-level undergraduate courses; basic skills/activity courses; foundation courses; Focus program courses
200-399 Undergraduate courses above introductory level
400-499 Advanced undergraduate courses, senior seminars, capstone courses, honors thesis courses
500-699 Graduate courses open to advanced undergraduate
700-999 Graduate only courses (not open to undergraduates)

Transition Process Documents