Terms to Know

Associate in Arts (AA) Degree & Associate in Science (AS) Degree - The degree awarded by a community college, like Foothill, upon satisfactory completion of an organized program. Usually requires at least two years of full-time study and 90 units of prescribed courses.

Career Certificate - Earned for satisfactory completion of a series of courses in a certificate program focused on career skills. Review the published Course Catalog for certificate requirements at or view indivivual Programs online for their requirements. www.foothill.edu/programs/programs.php

Career Major - An area of study focused on preparing you for immediate employment upon completion of study at Foothill College. Review the published Course Catalog for certificate requirements at or view indivivual Programs online for their requirements. www.foothill.edu/programs/programs.php

Certificate - A document that indicates that you have satisfactorily completed major courses in a program, but not general education courses. Foothill College offers the following type of certificate programs: Career Certificate; Certificate of Achievement; Certificate of Completion; Certificate of Proficiency; Certificate of Specialization and Skill Certificate.

Foothill awards these certificates when you satisfactorily complete certain specialized programs requiring fewer than two years of full-time study. Select Foothill College academic departments offer certificates of proficiency, specialization and skill. General requirements include prescribed coursework and a GPA of 2.0 or better in these courses. A certificate is not a degree.

Certificate of Achievement - The following state requirements apply to Foothill Certificate of Achievement programs: Completion of a minimum of 27 units that follow a prescribed course pattern; a minimum GPA of 2.0 for these units; a maximum of 12 transfer quarter units from other colleges or universities; and proficiency in mathematics and English as evidenced by examination or
completion of college-level courses.

Community College - a college that offers lower-division college credit, and awards associate
degrees and career skills-related certificates.

Course Catalog - The catalog is your key to a successful Foothill College experience. Published annually, the catalog includes a wealth of information about classes, campus resources, student services, program descriptions, degree requirements and college policies. Purchase the catalog for $4 at the on-campus bookstore or review it online at www.foothill.edu/schedule/catalog.php

Credit - Certification of the successful completion of a course, usually expressed in units of

Freshman - You're considered a freshman until you have completed 45 transferrable units.

Full-Time Status - You're enrolled in a minimum of 12 units.

General Education Requirements - A specific group of courses required of all students enrolled in college, regardless of major, who are working toward a degree. Also called breadth requirements. Review the Course Catalog for general education requirements for the associate degree at http://www.foothill.edu/programs/degrees.php

Grade-Point Average (GPA) - The grade-point average gives a measure of your average performance in letter-graded courses. Calculating your GPA requires relating the grade points you've earned in courses to the unit value of those courses. To calculate your GPA, access Foothill's grade point average calculator at www.foothill.edu/counseling/gpacalc.php

Lower Division - Refers to students or courses at the freshman- and sophomore-level of a college.

Part-Time Status - You're enrolled in 11 or fewer units.

Placement Testing - The process of gathering information about the individual student, reflecting the student's academic strength and areas for improvement. Placement testing is offered at no charge at Foothill College.

Prerequisite - A requirement that must be met before you can enroll in a particular course. Usually this is a placement test score, a prior course, or previously demonstrated knowledge.

Quarter System - One-fourth of the academic year. At Foothill College, the Fall Quarter begins in September; Winter Quarter begins in January; Spring Quarter begins in late March or early April; and Summer Session begins in June.

Registration - The official process of enrolling in courses. You must repeat this process each quarter.

Schedule of Classes - The schedule is designed to help you register for classes. It includes placement testing information, registration instructions, payment and refund instructions, academic calendar; course meeting dates and times; and instructions for adding and dropping courses. The most accurate, up-to-date schedule is available online at www.foothill.edu.schedule/schedule.php

Skill Certificate - Courses in this certificate program lead to an occupationally relevant set of skills; consult the official curriculum sheet for unit requirements.

Sophomore - You're considered a sophomore after you have completed 45 transferrable units.

Unit - A number that indicates the amount of college credit assigned to course. Minimums of 90 units are required to earn the associate degree.

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Top of page Last updated: September 19, 2012