The initial digit of the course number corresponds to the level, which parallels the three-digit numbering system (e.g., 100-level courses become 1000-level courses). Course numbers below 5000 are undergraduate level, while those numbered 5000-9999 are graduate and/or professional level:
- 100-999: Non-credit, non-degree: courses, offered primarily by Continuing and Professional Studies, that do not apply to a degree program.
- 1000-1999: Lower-level introductory undergraduate courses. Generally, there are no prerequisites.
- 2000-2999: Lower-level intermediate undergraduate courses. May have prerequisites.
- 3000-3999: Upper-level intermediate undergraduate courses. Likely have prerequisites or require instructor permission.
- 4000-4999: Upper-level advanced undergraduate courses. Usually have prerequisites or require instructor permission.
- 5000-5999: Introductory-level graduate courses.
- 6000-7999: Intermediate-level graduate and professional courses.
- 8000-9999: Advanced-level graduate and professional courses.
Courses that include a 500-level (X5XX) are reserved for topics courses (e.g., 1500, 2595, 3542, 4508, 5520, etc.). A topics course allows a department to offer a variety of subjects under an umbrella course with a similar theme.
Courses that end in -559 (e.g., 1559, 2559, 3559, 4559, 5559, etc.) are reserved for one-time offerings. One-time offerings cannot be repeated. If a department desires to repeat a one-time offering, it should be proposed as a new, stand-alone course or a topics course.
A course proposal is required to create a topics course (X5XX), one-time offering (X559), umbrella course, and standalone course. Courses must go through the formal curriculum review and approval processes established by each school before being added to the SIS Course Catalog.
The numbers _990-_999 in each thousand series (e.g., 2990, 4993, 8998) are designated for special usage:
- _990 Honors courses
- _991 Capstone courses
- _992 not used; reserved for future use
- _993 Independent Study courses
- _994 not used; reserved for future use
- _995 Research courses
- _996 not used; reserved for future use
- _997 not used; reserved for future use
- _998 not used, except for 4998, 8998, and 9998 (8998 and 9998 are research-rate courses for the graduate programs)
- 4998 Undergraduate Thesis
- 8998 Thesis Research (before advisor selected)
- 9998 Dissertation Research (before advisor selected)
- _999 not used, except for 4999, 8999, and 9999 (8999 and 9999 are research-rate courses for the graduate programs):
- 4999 Undergraduate Thesis
- 8999 Thesis Research (after advisor selected)
- 9999 Dissertation Research (after advisor selected)