Electives are courses required for completion of your 20-credit degree program. Many first-year students find it difficult to choose electives. Our best advice is to choose a topic you enjoyed in high school or are generally interested in studying.

Find course titles and descriptions in the courses section of the undergraduate calendar.

  • Read the course descriptions to ensure you have the prerequisites, and then check the Public Class Schedule in Carleton Central to see when the course is offered.
  • Be aware of preclusions in the course descriptions. If a course precludes additional credit for another course, that means you cannot get credit for both of those courses. Please note that preclusion does not mean equivalent, though in some cases it may be. Please contact your undergraduate advisor for further clarification.
  • If you encounter a restriction when trying to register, please submit a Registration Override Request on Carleton Central, and the department owning the course will get back to you.

Breadth Electives

Breadth Electives (prior to Fall 2017 known as Approved Arts, Social Science, Science or Business Electives) are all of the courses offered by the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the Faculty of Public Affairs, the Sprott School of Business, and the Faculty of Science. This excludes prohibited courses (see below) and all courses in Computer Science, Math and Statistics, and courses under the Faculty of Engineering and Design.

  • Once you’ve completed your breadth electives, any courses you take that would have been considered breadth are used as free electives (see below).
  • Here is a small sample of courses you might choose: PSYC 1001, BUSI 1003, BIOL 1103, BIOL 1902, ERTH 1006, HIST 1001, FILM 1101, JAPA 1010, FOOD 1001, RELI 1710, MUSI 1002, CHEM 1001. Please note that courses may not be offered every term or every year.
  • If you take a minor in another discipline (except Math/Stats), most likely all the courses in the minor would count towards this category of electives.

Free Electives

Free Electives are all courses in Approved Arts, Social Sciences, Science, Business, Computer Science, Math, and Statistics, excluding all prohibited courses (see below). Engineering courses can also count as Free Electives, but never Breadth. We encourage students to take electives each term.

Prohibited Courses

Prohibited courses cannot be used for credit in a Computer Science or any Combined Computer Science program or Minor in Computer Science. Please always refer to the most recent Undergraduate Calendar for the most up-to-date list of prohibited courses and for all prerequisites and preclusions. These courses are:

  • BUSI 1401, BUSI 2401, BUSI 2402, BUSI 3400, CGSC 1005, COMP 1001, MATH 1009, MATH 1119, ECON/MATH 1401, ECON/MATH 1402
  • All courses in IMD, IRM, MPAD, NET, OSS, PLT, and ITEC
  • All courses in BIT, except for the following: BIT 1000, BIT 1001, BIT 1100, BIT 1101, BIT 1200, BIT 1201, BIT 2000, BIT 2004, BIT 2005, BIT 2007, BIT 2100, and BIT 2300
  • All 0000-level MATH courses

IMPORTANT: Maximum Number of Credits Below the 2000-level.

  • A student may count a maximum of 7.0 credits below the 2000-level toward fulfillment of graduation requirements.
  • Credits in excess of this limit will be set aside as Extra to the Degree (ETD), No Credit for the Degree (NCD), or Forfeit. This allows students to increase their CGPA by pushing out low grades below the 2000-level through replacement by higher grades at the same level.