Course Registration

The college year consists of two regular semesters, fall and spring, plus several summer sessions of varying lengths.  Several programs offer courses in the fall and spring semester that last only a portion of the semester.

The unit of instruction is the semester hour or credit hour, which consists of the equivalent of one lecture period of 50 minutes  (hereafter called a contact-hour) each week for the entire semester (approximately 15 weeks). In addition to the time in class, students are expected to complete approximately twice as much time outside of class working on the course and its materials.

  1. The general expectation for one credit hour is one contact-hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of student work completed outside of the classroom each week for approximately fifteen weeks for a traditional semester, or the equivalent amount of work over a different period of time; or
  2. For other academic activities (including laboratory work and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours), an amount of work at least equivalent to that required in the above definition, as determined by the College.

In practice, a credit hour or semester hour consists of a minimum of 750 minutes of class time during a semester.

A course having three 50-minute class periods a week will, therefore, earn three semester hours of credit. Other meeting patterns will also fulfill the required contact time. The number of semester credits to be earned in a given course is always indicated in the course description.

Course Offerings

The information listed in this catalog about course availability and when courses will be offered was provided by chairs and program directors based on their planned course offerings and are intended to provide students with guidance as they produce their schedules.  However, schedules are subject to change, especially when the availability of appropriate instructors changes. Actual course offerings are listed in the online course schedule produced each semester by the Student Records and Financial Services Center.

Summer Session

The Canisius College Summer Session affords qualified graduate and undergraduate students educational opportunities of the same quality as the courses offered during the regular fall and spring semesters. Course offerings are planned especially for the following groups:

  • Undergraduate students who wish to complete required courses, acquire additional credits toward a degree, or make up deficiencies.
  • Transient students, graduate and undergraduate, who are pursuing degree work at other colleges and universities.

Course Registration Restrictions

In some departments registration in all or in some the course offerings may be restricted to majors in that department. In some instances the department chairperson may authorize registration of non-majors in the course offerings.


Some courses have prerequisites that must be met before a student can register for the course. Prerequisites include such requirements as the successful completion of previous courses, concurrent registration in another course, permission of the instructor or chair, and specific GPA and course grade requirements. A student may not register for a course where prerequisites are indicated unless the prerequisites have been successfully completed.

Note: For two-semester courses that are listed with one title and description (e.g., BIO 111-BIO 112), it is understood that successful completion of the first semester is a prerequisite for admission to the second half of the course.

The numerical sequence used at Canisius College indicates the following: Courses numbered 100-199 and 200-299 are usually freshman/sophomore courses; 300-399 and 400-499 are usually junior/senior courses. Courses numbered 500 or higher are graduate courses.

Only students with senior standing (students having completed 90 or more credit hours) and a minimum GPA of 3.0 may petition to take one graduate course per semester.  Students must obtain approval from the chair or program director of the program offering the graduate class and the chair or program director of their undergraduate major, prior to petitioning to enroll in a graduate course.  Undergraduate students may only take a total of two graduate courses as undergraduates and are generally limited to courses numbered 500-599.  This policy does not apply to undergraduates who are currently pursuing college-approved undergraduate and graduate curricula, who should follow the curriculum map of their program(s).  In exceptional cases, students may petition to take courses at the 600-level or higher, using the same procedures.  Any graduate courses taken under this policy will appear on a student’s undergraduate transcript and the grades earned will factor into the student’s undergraduate grade point average.

The college reserves the right to cancel a course because of inadequate registration or for reasons that cannot be foreseen. Because of the brevity of course descriptions, further information concerning the content of each course should be obtained from the individual department.


All degree requirements must be satisfied as stated in the catalog. In some circumstances it may be necessary to make adjustments to the student’s curriculum. Substitutions must be approved in writing by the appropriate person: the associate dean for the Core Curriculum and the department chairperson for the major and/or concentration requirements.

Immunization Requirements for Class Attendance

Measles, Mumps, Rubella

New York State law requires all students taking six or more credits, attending any classes on campus, and born on or after January 1, 1957 to provide proof of immunity against measles, mumps and rubella to the Student Health Center prior to class attendance. Students must submit proof of two doses of measles (rubeola) vaccine, one dose of rubella (German measles) vaccine and one dose of mumps vaccine, given on or after their first birthday and after 1967.

Meningitis Requirement

All students registered for 6 or more credits and attending class on campus, regardless of birth date, are required to receive information about the risk of meningococcal disease and the benefit of vaccination. Students are required to read the information and either obtain the meningitis vaccine or sign a vaccine refusal statement within thirty days of first class attendance.


Immunization records, must be submitted by July 31 for fall attendance and January 1 for spring attendance. Summer students must submit records before their first day of class.  Non-compliance with health requirements results in registration cancellation, removal from college housing, and inability to register with the college for future semesters.  If registration is cancelled, a student will be reinstated once the health forms are submitted and deemed complete. Canisius College charges an immunization reinstatement fee.  To view the fee click here   Compliance with New York State health requirements is strictly enforced across the campus. 

Students taking online courses only are generally exempt from these requirements; however some online programs have established stricter immunization requirements.  On line students should discuss health requirements with Admissions or their program directors.

The Student Health Center website has detailed information about health requirements and links to the required forms.

Students enrolled in the Physician Assistant Studies program have additional immunization requirements.  Information about those requirements and deadine for submission to Student Health is available in the Physician Assistant Program Handbook.

Physical Examination Requirement

All full time undergraduates and all international students ( graduate and undergraduate) studying on an F1 Visa  are required to submit a complete physical examination form to Student Health by July 31 for fall attendance and January 1 for spring attendance. 

Graduate students enrolled in the  Physician Assistant Studies Program have an annual physical examination requirement.  Information about that requirement and deadline for submission to Student Health  can be found in that program’s hand book.

Cross-Registration Program

This program is sponsored by the Western New York Consortium of Colleges. Participating colleges/universities include Alfred State College, SUNY Buffalo, Canisius College, Daemen College, D’Youville College, Empire State College, Erie Community College, SUNY Fredonia, Genesee Community College, Jamestown Community College, Medaille College, Niagara County Community College, Niagara University, St. Bonaventure University, Trocaire College, University at Buffalo and Villa Maria College.

Cross-registration enables Canisius students to enrich their programs of study by taking specialized undergraduate courses available only at other campuses, and it provides some flexibility for meeting graduation requirements in a timely manner. During the fall and spring semesters only, full-time undergraduate students are eligible to participate in this program. Students must maintain a full time course load (12 credits minimum) at Canisius during the semester in which they cross-register. Students must abide by the rules and regulations of the institution where they are cross-registered.

Students may cross-register for only one undergraduate course per semester. Students may not cross-register for independent study or tutorial courses. Course registration is on a space-available basis only. At the end of the semester, the grade will be forwarded to Canisius by the visiting institution. The grade received will count in the Canisius grade point average. Course loads above 18 credit hours including the cross-registration course will result in additional Canisius tuition charges.

Students may only cross-register for a course that is approved. A major course must be approved by the student’s major department chairperson. A core curriculum course must be approved by the appropriate associate dean. A free elective course can be approved by the cross-registration officer. Students should check with the visiting school for course-registration restrictions, for additional requirements such as proof of residency and dates and times when cross-registration will be permitted. Cross-registration during your final semester at Canisius is discouraged since this may delay your degree conferral.

The cross-registration forms are available under the "FORMS" menu on the student portal.