The DeCal Program at UC Berkeley allows students to create and facilitate their own classes on a variety of subjects.  Students who are interested in creating their own DeCal have the opportunity to do so while working with a sponsoring CNR faculty member.  

The CNR deadline to turn in all required paperwork for Spring 2018 is Tuesday, October 24th. Please submit your packet to 260 Mulford.

Interested in facilitating a Spring  2018 CNR DeCal? Please fill out this form to receive up-to-date information regarding deadlines and requirements. 

New to Decals?

As of Spring 2018, any student who has not previously facilitated a DeCal or any student offering a completely new DeCal is required to attend a "StartUp Workshop" hosted by the Student Learning Center.  Students should contact if they can not make it to any of the scheduled sessions.

Steps for Starting a DeCal

The student facilitator is responsible for completing all necessary paperwork, obtaining signatures, submitting applications, and keeping a copy.  

You Must Complete the following:

  1. Course Proposal Packet: The Course Proposal Form (CPF), Unit Value Worksheet, instructions, and three checklists are combined into a course proposal packet that must be completed entirely, including all relevant signatures.
    • If submitting a proposal for an ESPM Decal, CNR will submit your packet to the ESPM deparment chair for review. Please turn in your entire packet except the ESPM department chair signature to 260 Mulford.  If your DeCal is for any other CNR department, you must submit your CPF form with the department chair's signature already on it.
  2. Unit value worksheet: The worksheet to calculate workload and resultant unit value is available for download. 
    • Unit value worksheet PDF (open and fill out in Acrobat, then print)
    • Microsoft Office document iconUnit Value Worksheet.doc (can be printed and filled out by hand)
    • Please ensure that the minimum total work hours are equivalent to the unit value of the course (e.g.: there are at least 45 hours for a 1 unit course). Also ensure that any requirements outlined in the worksheet are explained fully in the course syllabus.
  3. Syllabus: Must include an outline of course content, a reading list, statement of frequency of class meetings, clear description of assignments and requirements for passing the class including a weekly schedule of topics/assignments covered each day of class, key learning outcomes, method(s) of instruction, and method(s) of evaluation of student performance. 
  4. NEW: Faculty Sponsor Letter of Support - As of Spring 2018, this is required for all student-facilitated course proposals. A letter of support from the instructor of record must be provided for each course the instructor is sponsoring. The letter should address the five questions (listed in the link) explaining the role and relationship the instructor has with the course. The letter should be written on department letterhead and signed by the instructor of record. 

Additional Tips & Helpful Information: 

  • For more information about the Course Proposal Form, click here.  Please note that you will need to obtain signatures from the department chair (except ESPM) and sponsoring faculty member. For CNR DeCals, the "appropriate department staff person"  on the CPF form (#7) is  Patricia Helyer.
  • Review the Student Checklist for 98 and 198 Courses (in the Course Proposal Form).  This will include instructions and guidelines for completing your syllabus, unit value worksheet, general processes, etc.
  • Be sure to check that the weekly schedule outlined on your syllabus matches the Unit Value Worksheet.
  • Planning in advance is strongly encouraged to give adequate time for obtaining all required signatures and to make any updates and revisions after receiving feedback about your application. For Fall DeCals, obtaining signatures before summer break is highly recommended. 
  • Make sure that all the facilitators involved in the DeCal are listed on the Course Proposal Form and the Syllabus. 
  • DeCal Course Numbers (98 or 198) are based on course content, not student standing. Please consult with your faculty sponsor to determine the  appropriate class number based on your DeCal course material. You cannot offer it as both.

What to Expect After Turning in Your Completed Application

  1. Please fill out the DeCal Survey. Filling out this survey is the only way to notify schedulers to request a room for your DeCal.  Note: Please make sure to include all facilitators and requested information on this survey.
  2. CNR submits your proposal to the Faculty Senate.  The Senate reviews it and may provide edits.  CNR will contact you to communicate whether your proposal needs edits or if none are required.  The DeCal facilitator then resubmits the packet with the revisions to CNR who sends it onto the Faculty Senate for final review.
  3. Once your DeCal is approved, and if you've completed the DeCal Survey, CNR will contact you with your course number. It is the facilitator's responsibility to share this with students for enrollment.
  4. In order to receive units for Facilitating a DeCal, facilitators are responsible for completing the Application for Independent Study & Research  and turning it in to 260 Mulford Hall during regular office hours.   Facilitators are directly enrolled into units and do not need a CCN/code. Only facilitators listed on the DeCal Survey will be able to receive credit; if you are a facilitator that was not listed on the survey response and would like to receive credit, please have the primary facilitator contact  
  5. To have your DeCal listed on the DeCal website, please contact  CNR does not manage the website and can not post your DeCal information to it.

For any questions or concerns, please contact Patricia Helyer at