Frequently Asked Questions

Take a moment to review the following links as they answer some of our most common questions. If you don't find the answers you're looking for here, please also try the DVC Counseling Video Library.



How can a DVC counselor help me?

A DVC counselor can help you by providing you with academic, career, and personal counseling. We can help you navigate the complicated process of determining your goals and careers and what you must do to realize those goals.

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How can I make an appointment to see a counselor?

Turn in all official transcripts from other colleges/universities to Admissions and Records prior to scheduling your appointment. You may request that your transcripts be evaluated for CSUGE, IGETC, and/or an associate degree when you schedule your appointment.

DVC accepts transcripts from institutions (e.g., colleges, universities, and high schools) currently recognized by regional accrediting organizations as recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

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How do I add/drop a course?

Review the "How do I add/drop a course?" webpage.

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How do I become a student at DVC?

Review the "Apply to DVC" webpage.

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As an international student, how do I enroll at DVC?

Detailed information about applying to DVC and next steps after you apply can be found on the International Student Office (ISO) website or the FAQ page(pdf).

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I'm interested in transferring to a private or out-of-state college or university. How do I know which courses to take?

Determining which courses to take in order to transfer to a private or out-of-state college or university can be a complicated process. DVC has a few articulation agreements with private and out-of-state college and universities. To access these agreements, schedule an appointment with a DVC counselor. For those institutions for which DVC doesn't have articulation agreements with, you may still meet with a DVC counselor to discuss your options but you will ultimately be responsible for contacting the institution you are interested in to discuss which courses may be appropriate to complete at DVC. You may also want to visit the Transfer Center which is located in the lobby of the Counseling Center. The Transfer Center has a number of resources for people interested in attending a private or out-of-state college or university.

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How do I calculate my GPA (grade point average), my transferable GPA?

To calculate your transferrable GPA, please do the following, but be sure to only include UC or CSU transferable courses.

Transferable GPA is calculated by taking the total number of transferable units earned and dividing it by the number of transferable points attempted for a grade.

A = 4 pts, B = 3 pts, C = 2 pts, D = 1 pt, F = 0 pt.





(Pts x Units)

Math 120





ENGL 122





HIST 120



















GPA (Points/Units)= 3.0

You can find a list of UC transferable courses on ASSIST(UC). You can find a list of CSU transferable courses on ASSIST(CSU).

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What do I do if the courses I want to take are full?

If the courses you want to take are full,

  1. Check the online schedule of classes daily to see if someone has dropped, leaving an opening for which you can register prior to the first day of class.
  2. If the class has a waiting list that still has openings on it, add your name; if an opening occurs, the department will contact you and ask if you want to register for the class.
  3. If the class is still closed on the first day, attend anyway, and bring a Schedule Request form. Ask the instructor to grant you permission to add the course. If your name is on the Wait List, you might get priority consideration for any open seats in the class.
  4. Look for other classes to take, such as general education courses or elective classes.

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What is the maximum number of units I can take Pass/No Pass?

The University of California (UC) system will accept a maximum of 14 UC-transferable units with a “Pass” or “Credit” grade. The California State University (CSU) system limitations vary by campus; check with the campus of your choice. Private and out-of-state institutions will have varying rules. Refer to the websites of the institutions you are interested in attending for details. For more details on pass/no pass, click the FAQ page.

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If I believe I already meet the prerequisite for a course, what do I do?

For prerequisites for courses taken outside the Contra Costa Community College District (CCC, DVC, or LMC), you must submit a prerequisite form along with documentation proving that you have completed the prerequisite (e.g. copy of transcript, exam score report, etc.) to the Admissions and Records Office. The instructions for submitting the Prerequisite Form are on the front of the form.

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What should I do if I get a "D" or "F" in a course?

If you receive a "D" or "F" in a course, you may want to consider doing academic renewal. There are two types of academic renewal, with course repetition and without course repetition. With course repetition, you can retake the class; your second grade will be used in your GPA, not the first D or F. Both the CSU and UC systems honor this policy, so they will not count the first grade, either, and it will most likely not affect your admissions to the university. If you do not want to repeat the class, you may apply for renewal without course repetition. To do this you must first complete at least 20 units with grades of "C" or higher without a "D" or "F". Then you can remove up to 24 units of "D" and "F" grades from your GPA. You may only request this type of renewal once. The form for Academic Renewal without Course Repetition can be found by clicking here (pdf file called Petition for Academic Renewal). The process for academic renewal without course repetition can only be completed once. The policies and practices of private and out-of-state universities vary in regard to academic renewal, so contact those universities directly to determine their philosophy about academic renewal grades. Before deciding, it is recommended that you meet with a counselor to discuss your options.

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How does a "W" affect my admissions to a college or university?

That depends on the college or university. The CSUs and the UCs do not look negatively on W grades, although if you have many W’s on your transcript, you should explain why. The policies and practices of private and out-of-state universities vary, so contact those universities directly to determine their philosophy about W grades. W's do not affect your GPA. Finally, if you withdraw from more than 50 percent of the courses you have attempted (after attempting at least 12 units), you will be placed on progress probation. Being placed on probation can affect admissions. Also, if you have many W's, you may want to explain why on your admissions application.

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How often can I take the Math or English Placement Tests?

View the Assessment Center website

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How can I dispute a grade that I received?

The DVC Catalog clearly outlines the proper procedures for dispute resolution with instructors and other faculty or staff members of DVC. For full information on the grade appeal process, see "student appeals for grade changes" under the "academic/instructional policies and procedures" of the catalog. Refer to the catalog (pdf) for more details. Consult a counselor for further explanation, if necessary.

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Where do I find important dates and deadlines?

You can find important dates and deadlines by clicking on the calendar page. Click on “Admissions/Registration Calendar” for refund, drop, and other such deadlines. Other useful calendars can also be found at this link.

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How can I find admissions statistics about the University of California system?

Click on the Information Center of University of California webpage to find statistics on the University of California system.

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If I get an A.A./A.S. (associate in arts/science degree), can I automatically transfer to a 4-year college?

Not in most cases. An associate in arts/science degree from DVC means that you have completed a two year college degree program. In general more and/or different coursework is required to transfer than is required for an A.A./A.S. In the process of completing your requirements to transfer, you may obtain an A.A./A.S. degree if you select classes carefully. Some private or out-of-state schools may view an A.A./A.S. differently than public California universities. In addition, you do not need an A.A./A.S. to transfer to a four year institution in most cases. Please schedule an appointment with a counselor for more information.

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How many units must I be enrolled in to be considered "full-time"?

A student must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 units in fall or spring term or 4 units in a six-week summer session to be considered a full-time student. Fifteen units is the usual load for students who wish to complete the AA degree in two years (four semesters). Be aware that some programs (i.e., financial aid) view full time status over the summer differently then the general college policy.

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How can I apply for financial aid?

You can apply for federal financial aid online. Also, you should visit the DVC Financial Aid website for more information. Be aware that there are specific deadlines for financial aid that may apply.

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How can I apply for scholarships?

You can apply for DVC scholarships online. You may also want to review the website This is a free scholarship search website. Be aware that there are specific deadlines for scholarships that may apply.

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I still have a question, is online counseling available?

Yes, for quick questions meet with a Virtual Drop-In Counselor .

These may include:

  • clarification of college procedures and policies
  • course prerequisite information
  • course offerings and majors available
  • referrals to other programs/services

Questions that would require a 30 minute appointment and are not appropriate for E-Counseling may include:

  • personal or crisis counseling
  • transcript evaluations for transcripts from other institutions
  • detailed analysis of a student's transcript to determine what is required for a student to complete their educational goal

Quick question meet with a Virtual Drop-In Counselor .

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