Joint Academic Coding System (JACS) is the subject classification system. It is used by Higher Education Institutions in the UK to describe the subject content of the programmes and courses.
JACS codes consist of a letter and three numbers, where the letter represents the broad subject classification and the subsequent numbers the topic within the main subject.
A single JACS code, or if appropriate multiple ones, can be selected to represent the subject of a programme or a course.
JACS codes do not indicate the level of study, as the same codes may be used for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes and courses.
JACS codes are different to UCAS codes although they are used by UCAS when describing the subject of a programme.
In many cases the UCAS programme code will be the same as the JACS subject code and this can lead to confusion between the two concepts. Where a programme involves more than one subject the UCAS code is based on an aggregation of the JACS codes, i.e. a single code is used. For example BSc Biology with Psychology, which would be described by two separate JACS codes at RHUL: C100 - Biology and C800- Psychology, has got one UCAS code C1C8
First operational version of JACS codes (v 1.7) was published in 1999 and was used by HESA and UCAS systems for the academic year 2002/03. A revision was undertaken in 2005 and a JACS version 2.0 was introduced from the 2007/08 academic year. The most recent revision brought a new version - JACS 3.0 which is operational from the 2012/13 academic year.
You can find additional information about JACS 3.0 on HESA website.
The full list of JACS 3.0 codes can be found here.