2007-2008 Academic Policies and Procedures

Withdrawing from Courses | Tuition Appeals | Holds | Class Attendance | Credit/No Credit Option | Directed Studies | Auditing Courses | Academic Load | Graduation | Academic Advising | General Information

Registration

Credit Hours

One credit hour is given for one 50-minute class hour per week for 14 weeks or equivalent. Most courses at the college vary from 2 to 4 credit hours.

Prerequisite Requirements

Certain courses at the college have prerequisites. The prerequisites for a course are listed in the academic catalog, the class schedule, and the course syllabus. Students are permitted to pre-register for a course that has prerequisites provided the prerequisite coursework is in progress at the time of the registration session. Only grades of C- or better are considered to satisfy prerequisite requirements. Students are responsible for making sure they have met prerequisites and grade standards prior to the beginning of each semester. The college reserves the right to withdraw a student from any course for which prerequisites and grade standards have not been met.

Registration Sessions

For Fall and Spring registration, students are registered in order of class standing at the time the registration session begins. Registration for May/Summer is on a first come, first served basis. Students are notified by postcard what their class standing is and their dates to register. Registrations are accepted via the college’s web system (WebAdvisor) or in person.

Registration for Fall Semester occurs in March.
Registration for Spring Semester occurs in October.
Registration for May/Summer Terms occurs in February.

May Term

May term is offered for undergraduate students during the month of May as a short, interim term between Spring and Summer semesters. May term is designed to help students fulfill upper division elective requirements, as well as to offer unique courses where students can gain in-depth knowledge of interesting topics in classes which are not offered during a regular semester. May term also gives instructors the opportunity to teach courses that devote focused attention to a subject that emphasizes their areas of expertise. May term classes are typically two credits, and meet for six hours in class each week.

In addition to regular course offerings, we also offer several international and domestic study tours each May term under the direction of Westminster faculty. May term trips have taken Westminster students to places such as southern Utah, California, New York, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, China, and many countries in Europe. The cost of these trips is not included in May term tuition.

Beginning in 2006, students can apply their “free” May term credits to either the May term or to the Summer semester. Payment of full-time tuition for Fall and/or Spring semesters earns two hours each, for a possible total of four hours. To apply 2 earned hours to the Summer semester, students must register for a minimum of three total credit hours. To apply 4 earned hours, students must register for 6 or more credit hours.

Late Registration

Students may register until the end of the first full week of classes. Specific dates are listed in the Academic Calendar. Beginning with the first day of classes, students must obtain instructor permission to enroll in any classes by obtaining the instructor’s signature on an Add Card.

Confirmations of Class Schedules

Students can check their schedule and print a confirmation at any time via the web using WebAdvisor, or they may come to the Registrar’s Office during office hours to receive a copy. Students are expected to check these confirmations carefully and report discrepancies to the Registrar’s Office. The computerized confirmation reflects the courses for which the student is actually registered.

Wait Lists

Once a class has closed, a student has the option of being put on a wait list for that class. As space becomes available, students are added in the class automatically by the Registrar’s Office during the pre-registration period. Once classes begin, a student must turn in an add card with the instructor’s signature in order to be officially enrolled in the class. Although many students get into their classes from the wait list, students are encouraged to choose alternate courses whenever possible.

Adding Courses

Students may add courses until the end of the first full week of classes (see Academic Calendar). Specific dates are listed in the Academic Calendar. Beginning the first day of classes, students must obtain instructor permission before adding and can no longer add courses via the Web (WebAdvisor).

Withdrawing from Courses

Students may withdraw from class through the eleventh week of class. Students who withdraw after the end of the first full week receive a grade of W. Students who withdraw after the eleventh week receive a grade of WF which is calculated as an F in the GPA. Specific withdrawal deadlines are listed in the Academic Calendar. In case of illness or injury, family members may complete the student withdrawal from the college. In case of duress or special need, an administrative withdrawal may be initiated by the Dean of Students.

Students who fail to withdraw from courses they have not attended are liable for all tuition and interest charged to their accounts. Grades of F are assigned at the end of the semester for any classes that students fail to drop.

Medical Withdrawals

Students who are unable to complete a semester due to serious health problems and who are not eligible for grades of incomplete may request a medical withdrawal. Students seeking a medical withdrawal should contact the Dean of Students. Written verification from a physician or licensed mental health professional will be required. A medical withdrawal usually constitutes withdrawal from all courses for the semester, and withdrawals are made retroactive only to the last date of attendance. Requests for medical withdrawals must be submitted within six weeks after the end of the semester in question. If a medical withdrawal is granted, reevaluation by the student’s physician or counselor may be required prior to re-registration.

Tuition Appeals

Students may appeal charges of tuition and fees (for personal and/or medical reasons) by submitting a letter of appeal and appropriate documentation. The appeal can be submitted to any member of the Appeals Committee from the following offices: Accounts Receivable, Registrar’s Office, Financial Aid, and the Dean of Students.
Appeal requests must be submitted within six weeks after the end of the semester in question. Approved appeals will be made retroactive only to the last date of attendance.

Changes in registered hours may change any financial aid disbursed to an account (see also Financial Aid Miscellaneous Information, Withdrawal from College, Medical Withdrawal).

Holds

The college may place administrative holds for students with outstanding financial obligations, overdue library books, library fines, bad checks, or other obligations to the college. Once a hold has been placed, students may be prevented from registering or obtaining diplomas or official transcripts until the obligation is met. Unofficial informational transcripts are available in the Registrar’s Office and on the campus web site (WebAdvisor).

Class Attendance

Students are expected to attend all sessions of each class. Specific attendance requirements are established by each instructor, and such requirements are enforced by the college. Students who do not attend class during the first week may be considered “no-shows” and dropped from the course by the instructor to make room for students on wait lists; however, it cannot be assumed that all instructors will do so. Students are ultimately responsible for making sure they have dropped courses that they do not plan to attend.

Electing the Credit/No Credit Option

Students must elect the credit/no credit option by the deadline posted in the Academic Calendar, approximately nine weeks after classes begin. The credit-no credit option may not be changed after the deadline, except in cases where students change majors or minors and the major or minor department does not require that the course be taken again for a letter grade. See Credit/No Credit Option under the Grading and Academic Standards section of this catalog for details.

Directed Studies

A completed Application for Permission to take a Directed Studies Course form, signed by the instructor and School Dean, must be submitted to the Registrar’s Office. (Undergraduate directed studies courses are numbered 401; Graduate Program directed studies courses are listed in the Academic Catalog.)

Auditing Courses

Students may elect to audit courses at Westminster according to the guidelines listed below. Courses that are entered on students’ permanent records as audited (AU) earn no credit and fulfill no requirements.

Regular Audit

Students may register for a regular audit (one-half of credit tuition) according to the following guidelines:

  1. Subject to space availability, students may sign up to audit a class on the first day of class.
  2. Students wishing to audit an activity course such as a physical education, art, theater, writing, or computer science course must obtain written permission from the instructor.
  3. Only students accepted to Masters degree programs may audit graduate classes.
  4. Students who are not nursing majors may audit nursing courses with permission of the instructor.

Alumni Audit

Students who graduated from Westminster in the past and who are not currently pursuing a degree may register for an alumni audit ($100 per class, plus a $50 technology fee for Fall or Spring semesters) according to the following guidelines:

  1. Students must register through the Director of Alumni. Registrations accepted by the director will be verified the first day of class and are subject to space availability.
  2. Because an audit of an activity course such as a physical education, art, theater, writing, or computer science course requires the instructor’s approval, the Director of Alumni will contact instructors for permission.
  3. Only students who have a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Westminster may audit MBA classes as alumni. Students may audit Master of Education and Master of Professional Communication classes with permission of the instructor.

Academic Load

Undergraduate Students

Fall/Spring
Hours

Average

15

Full time

12-16

Half time

6-11

Less than half time

5 or fewer

Maximum for students on probation

13

Full time for students with financial assistance

12

Full time for students with veterans' benefits

12

Minimum for international students

12

May
Hours

Average

3

Full time

4

Maximum number of hours

6

Summer
Hours

Average

6

Full time
(Financial Aid requires 12 hours for full-time status.)

8

Maximum recommended number of hours

12

Graduate Students

Hours

Full time

7 or more

Half time

4-6

Less than half time

3 or fewer

Overload Hours

Students who wish to register for more than the maximum number of hours must have at least a 3.0 GPA. Students who wish to take more than 20 credit hours in a regular semester (fall or spring) must also have the permission of their academic advisor and the dean of the appropriate school.

Graduation

Applying for Graduation

Candidates for graduation should apply to the Registrar’s Office two regular semesters prior to their planned completion date. Students can apply for December, May, or August graduation dates. Application deadlines are posted in the Academic Calendar in the fall semester.

To apply for graduation, students must obtain degree audits for all academic programs, including the honors program. Graduation applications are available in the Registrar’s Office. Students are expected to meet with their academic advisors to review and sign all required paperwork. Paperwork that is unsigned or incomplete will be returned to the student. Candidates are notified of remaining degree requirements and their status within four weeks after applying for graduation.

Requirements

To be eligible for a bachelor’s degree, students must satisfy the following conditions:

  • complete a minimum of 124 semester credit hours, 40 of which must be upper division courses numbered 300 or above from a four-year institution (see Quantity Standard below).
  • fulfill all liberal education requirements (see Liberal Education Requirements section below).
  • maintain an overall grade point average of 2.00 or above (see Grade Point Average section below).
  • meet all course requirements and grade point average requirements in the major and minor (see individual major and minor listings).
  • fulfill the residency requirements currently in effect (see Residency Requirement section above).

Note: Only letter grades of C- or better may be presented to satisfy major, minor, or LE requirements (with the exception of Nursing, which requires a grade of C or better; and Education, which requires a grade of C+ or better in all education classes).

The final responsibility for being informed about, and adhering to, graduation requirements rests with the individual student.

Quantity Standard

A minimum of one hundred twenty-four (124) credit hours of college work is required for graduation. Forty (40) hours of this number must be earned in upper division courses (courses numbered 300 and above). Although some lower division transfer coursework from two-year institutions may be accepted as meeting upper division major requirements, these hours will not be counted toward the 40 upper division hours required for graduation. Students with 123.51 or more hours have completed the quantity standard for graduation.

Grade Point Average

Students must present a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 in all work completed at the college. Students must present a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.3 in their major unless otherwise specified in the major program. Students should check their major programs for grade point average requirements.

Graduating with Honors

Honors are awarded to undergraduate students only upon graduation and are determined as follows:

Summa Cum Laude 3.85 cumulative grade point average or higher
Magna Cum Laude 3.75 cumulative grade point average (up to but not including 3.85)
Cum Laude 3.50 cumulative grade point average (up to but not including 3.75)

Important note: Grade point averages are not rounded in order to achieve honors. If a student has a final cumulative grade point average of 3.499, Westminster College will not award honors upon graduation. Similarly, if a student qualifies for honors and has a 3.849 cumulative grade point average, they will be awarded Magna Cum Laude and will not have their GPA rounded up to achieve Summa Cum Laude status.

Honors noted in the Commencement program are based upon the grade point average at the end of the spring semester. Honors designations noted in the program are subject to change based on the calculation of final grade point averages for students attending May and Summer terms.

Undergraduate students can achieve honors in two ways:

Option 1

Completing 60 hours of coursework at Westminster with letter grades and achieving a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.50 or higher (as noted above).

Option 2

Transferring in with a transfer cumulative grade point average of 3.50 or above and completing 35 hours of coursework with a cumulative GPA of 3.50 or above at Westminster. Note: The Registrar will re-calculate grade point averages from all institutions and will include any recently taken coursework to determine your final transfer grade point average.

Academic Rank

Westminster College does not rank its students.

Commencement

The commencement ceremony is held in late May or early June. All students who complete requirements for graduation and are entitled to receive degrees are required to be present at the commencement exercises. Students who, due to extenuating circumstances, are unable to attend must request that they be excused. Requests must be made in writing to the Registrar’s Office.

December and April graduates will receive their diplomas following the ceremony. Students attending May term will receive diplomas mid-June. August graduates completing their degree requirements during the summer term may attend the preceding spring ceremony but will not receive diplomas until mid-August.

Academic Advising

Academic advising is crucial to Westminster College’s student-centered mission. It is a developmental process during which advisors (faculty, staff, and peer) work with individual students to create curricular choices designed to match the student’s life and career goals. In partnership with students, advisors will:

  • Share knowledge about the institution and the curriculum
  • Link students to college and community resources
  • Provide accessible advising
  • Demonstrate sensitivity to differences among diverse student communities

All first-year and new transfer students receive individualized academic advising in the START Center after admission to Westminster. All freshmen participate in a unique educational development program called Pathfinder, designed to help them make the transition to college. Each May, new students meet with advisors to learn about college and departmental resources, program requirements, explore educational alternatives and select courses.

Continuing students receive academic advising in the START Center or choose a faculty advisor. By the junior year, students must formally declare a major and meet with a faculty advisor in their academic programs. Faculty advisors work with students to map out remaining requirements and plan course sequencing to graduation. These advising sessions generally:

  • Review the requirements for the degree, any special options, and possible electives
  • Identify any deficiencies in the student’s record and ways to correct them
  • Discuss career and graduate school options

General Information

Final Exams

During Fall and Spring semesters, final exams take place during the final week of the semester. A schedule listing the dates and times of exams can be found on the Registrar’s Office website at http://www.westminstercollege.edu/registrar/. Students are responsible for knowing the correct day and time a final exam will be offered. Students with conflicting exams are also responsible for talking to their instructors to create an alternate schedule.

Web Services

It is now possible to search for available classes, register for classes, view and print student class schedules, print unofficial transcripts, print your degree audit, change your address, and update your directory information release preference on the Web using WebAdvisor. WebAdvisor requires a login name and PIN number, which are both sent regularly to student e-mail accounts in GroupWise.

GroupWise E-mail Accounts

Each student is provided with a GroupWise e-mail account when you have been accepted as a student. This campus e-mail system provides the e-mail address of all the students, staff, and faculty at Westminster. We encourage students to check their campus e-mail frequently because important information is sent to students via e-mail, such as registration deadlines, campus events and activities, or general school announcements. Instructors also use GroupWise to contact students with specific class information. For instructions on how to check your student e-mail, please refer to the Help Desk in the garden level of the Giovale Library or call the IT Support Phone at 832-2023.

ROTC

Westminster College offers students an opportunity to participate in the ROTC programs of the U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Army, and the U.S. Navy through cooperative programs at the University of Utah. The appropriate department at the University should be contacted for specific information: U.S. Air Force (581-6236); U. S. Army (581-6716); and U.S. Navy (581-6723).

ID Cards

Student ID cards are available in the Health, Wellness and Athletics Center. The card gives access to the fitness center and acts as a library card (giving access to all academic libraries in Utah), a meal card, an activity card, and official college identification. A semester sticker on the back of the card indicates that the card has been validated through the term indicated. Identification cards must be validated each semester. Replacement cost is $10.

Student Insurance

Students are encouraged to carry health and accident insurance, which can be obtained through the American College Student Association. Their web address is www.ACSA.com, or you may contact Nathan White at Strategic Benefits 801-433-1686.

Parking Stickers & Bus Passes

Students may obtain parking stickers and bus passes at the cashier’s window in Bamberger Hall. To get a parking sticker, students must provide their driver’s license and car registration. Parking stickers are free. To get a bus pass, students must bring their Westminster ID card. Bus passes are good for one academic year. The cost of bus passes is currently $15; however, the cost will vary depending on UTA’s fees.