What to do when required classes are full


Photo credit: Briana Mcdaniel

Every Chico State student must fulfill graduation requirements by earning enough units. Taking specific classes and making sure our homework gets done but as you close in on graduation, time is of the essence.

Imagine, you’re at the pinpoint of graduating and you’re enrolling in classes and you find out one of the class requirements isn’t being offered for the incoming fall or spring semester.

From experience, it’s infuriating when it’s time to take 400 level courses and they’re not being offered the semester you’re supposed to be graduating.

Professor Antonio Bermúdez Arreguín, who took on the task of teaching the course FLNG 490, will not be available to students for the incoming spring or fall semesters. He’s taking on a sabbatical that will allow him to write and publish a book. He said that if a course is necessary, but the department or program doesn’t offer it, or professors don’t teach it, he suggests talking to the department chair to ask what your options are.

“This is a real problem and I think with a fair reason the students can go to the chair department and talk to the main officers and if not the dean, especially if it’s a course that’s required for a student to graduate,” Bermudez said. “I think we’re asking too much from the students, we can’t say this is a requirement and not offer it as a course. In my case, I’m not sure if this course isn’t being offered since I’ll be on my sabbatical or because a professor won’t take on another course. But since I won’t be here because of my sabbatical, this course will not be held in the following semester.”

According to the Chair of International languages, literature and cultures department Patricia E. Black said there are available professors to teach this course but students can substitute their class.

“We’re not offering this course because it’s possible for students to substitute their classes,” Black said. “But yes, (more) professors are qualified to teach this course but are also teaching (other) important courses that are required for graduation.”

This is so frustrating, especially if there are professors who are qualified to teach this course but are either unwilling or unaware of its importance. If the department knows that we need to take specific courses to graduate, why would they only have one professor available to teach it? Is it not obvious that students suffer the consequences when they are forced to take on more semesters that they can’t afford?

We shouldn’t be limited to our education because professors who can’t be hired or faculty in their departments don’t want to take on another course. If that’s the case, let me graduate because nobody is trying to teach it.

So if you’re in the midst of this troubling situation, talking to your department chair is your safest bet. They can assist you in finding how to meet your requirements, find alternatives or substitute a class.

“Students who encounter a problem like this (should) always get in touch with the department. We will find a solution,” Black said.

Then again, why should a higher level course that’s required be neglected by other courses? This is just ridiculous. Don’t force me to take on a 400 level class required for graduation when you’re limiting my options.

Karen Limones can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.