Continuous Attendance and Catalog Rights

Undergraduate students acquire "catalog rights" with respect to the requirements for a degree program by maintaining continuous attendance. A student who has been enrolled either at a California community college (CCC) or in regular sessions at a CSU campus for at least one semester or two quarters of consecutive calendar years is considered to be in "continuous attendance." Once a student has established his or her "catalog rights," an absence related to an approved leave of absence or for attendance at another accredited institution of higher learning (for undergraduates only) shall not be considered an interruption, providing the absence does not exceed two years.

This concept is important because continuous attendance affects the requirements a student must meet to graduate from a CSU campus. SJSU issues a new on-line catalog every year, which is the official record of all the degrees and degree requirements for the programs at SJSU. These degree requirements may change from one catalog to the next.

Students who have been in continuous attendance may meet the SJSU campus graduation requirements in force

  • at the time they began continuous enrollment at a CCC or other CSU campus; or
  • at the time they entered SJSU; or
  • at the time they graduate from SJSU.

By maintaining continuous attendance and selecting option (1) or (2), students can be assured that their SJSU campus graduation requirements will not change. Their right to choose one of these options is called "catalog rights." SJSU will use the matriculation term (i.e., option 2) as the initial option (default) for all students; however, students transferring from a CCC or CSU campus, who would benefit from an earlier term based on continuous enrollment, may request option (1) or (3) from their departments or the Office of the Registrar.

If a student follows an earlier version of a program in which his or her department has discontinued or modified required courses, the department may authorize appropriate substitutions. If while enrolled a student changes major, concentration, or minor, he or she may be required to complete the major or minor requirements in effect at the time of the change. However, he or she may continue to follow the university, General Education, and mathematics and writing requirements listed in the university catalog for which "catalog rights," are claimed.

SJSU affords graduate students the same rights as indicated above with the exception of the references to CCCs.