Course Selection

Once you have chosen your programs of study, U1 students should select courses according to the requirements for their programs (Major/Minor concentrations, Honours/Joint Honours programs, Faculty programs).

It is important to refer to the eCalendar as well as individual departmental program information (found on departmental websites or at the front desk of the departmental office) to confirm program requirements. You are advised not to register for a course if it overlaps in time with another course listed in the Minerva Class Schedule (Minerva Class Schedule (Minerva > Student Menu > Registration Menu > Step 2: Search Class Schedule and Add Course Sections)

Departmental Academic Advisors are very familiar with the requirements of their Honours, Major Concentration, and Minor Concentration programs. They give specific information about prerequisites, courses, approval for required courses and program selection. Since they are also generally members of McGill University's academic staff, they can also provide useful insight into potential options for further study in their respective disciplines. 

Course Load

A typical full-time course load is 12-15 credits per semester. Please note that students must be registered for a minimum of 12 credits to be considered full-time.

If a student is taking 5 courses (15 credits) in one semester, a suggested course selection would include approximately 2-3 courses for a major concentration, 1-2 courses for a minor concentration, and 1-2 courses of electives.


BA students can take any courses offered in the Faculties of Arts or Science as elective courses, permitted they have completed the appropriate course prerequisites. BA students are permitted to take a maximum of 12 credits of courses in Faculties outside of Arts or Science throughout their degree. Please refer to our Faculty of Arts Course Regulations webpage for more information. 

Course Level

Most courses taken in the first year at McGill will be at the 200 level, with the exception of language courses, where the appropriate level will be determined by a placement test administered by the department offering the course. The first digit of the course number normally denotes the course level.


When registering for courses, it is the student's responsibility to ensure that all course prerequisites have been met. Students should not register for a course if they have not already completed the prerequisite for that course. NOTE: Minerva will not stop a student from registering in a course for which the student has not satisfied the prerequisite.

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