The courses needed to prepare for the Departmental Exam are: SIO 210, SIO 260, SIO 217A, SIO 217B, and SIO 217C. These five courses are the "core" courses that climate students are required to take. In addition, least 4 elective courses are required and must actively participate in at least 2 quarters of a seminar course. The criteria for an elective course being acceptable is that it be justifiably relevant to the study of climate, and the instructor must be willing to write and grade a question for the written departmental exam. The exam format consists of a written and an oral portion.