School & program information

New schools

California high schools are eligible to establish an “a-g” course list if they are a diploma-granting institution and are accredited by a regional accrediting agency.


Charter schools

New charter schools wishing to set up an "a-g" course list will follow the same process as other new schools.

Conversion charter schools are handled differently because they often re-open with seniors who may be applying to the University. UC generally allows conversion charter schools to retain their original “a-g” course list for a year or two until they are able to become re-accredited (or a candidate for accreditation). These charter schools should notify UC immediately of their conversion and provide the charter agreement authorization.

Charter management organizations do not meet the criteria to establish their own “a-g” course lists.

Since charter schools have substantial autonomy to design and offer courses that differ from those offered at other schools in their district, unlike other comprehensive high schools, they are required to submit complete course content descriptions for all courses that are being considered for UC approval. Charter schools may not simply add to their “a-g” course lists courses that were already approved for other schools in their district or charter management organization.

Nonclassroom-based / independent study schools

The University defines a nonclassroom-based / independent study school as a public, charter or private high school in which at least half of the students receive 80 percent of their instruction off campus. These schools must comply with the University’s independent study policy to be eligible to establish and maintain an “a-g” course list.


Online schools

All online schools must operate according to the iNACOL Standards for Quality Online Programs and be accredited to set up an “a-g” course list. An online school is defined as a diploma-granting institution that offers courses through Internet-based methods, with time and/or distance separating the teacher and learner.


Online course publishers

Online course publishers and their courses must meet iNACOL's Standards for Quality Online Courses in the areas of content, instructional design, student assessment, technology, and course evaluation and support.



UC grants program status to programs and organizations that offer standardized high school curriculum. California high schools can add the program’s "a-g" approved courses to their school’s course list without having to submit a complete course content description.


Home schooling

The clearest path for admission to UC for home-schooled students is based on examination scores alone. UC campuses also admit by exception a small number of students who do not meet all freshman admission requirements.