Academic Information and Policies


Table of Contents

Academic Advisement

Armstrong State University considers academic advisement to be an essential component of the educational experience. Academic advisors assist students in several areas of their university experience including choosing a major, exploring career options, and selecting courses every semester. While students are ultimately responsible for their own choices, for selection of their academic program, and for meeting university deadlines, Armstrong does require each student to meet with an advisor at least once every semester. The vice president and dean of faculty gives overall direction to the advisement program, with appropriate department heads coordinating advisement in their departments. Academic advisement is available as follows:

Office of Academic Orientation and Advisement – 212 Solms Hall
-         All undeclared majors
-         Non-degree-seeking students returning to school after a number of years away

Adult Academic Services/Academic Assistance—Solms 212
-          All students currently enrolled in learning support courses
-         All students in the 62 Plus program

Departmental Offices
All students who have declared majors or are enrolled in pre-professional programs should obtain advisement in their departments.
 

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Class Attendance

  • The effect of attendance on course grades is left to the discretion of instructors. Students are responsible for knowing everything that is announced, discussed, or lectured upon in class as well as for mastering all outside assignments. Students are also responsible for submitting all assignments, tests, recitations, and unannounced quizzes on time.
  • Instructors are responsible for informing all classes at the first meeting what constitutes excessive absence in the course. Students are responsible for knowing and complying with attendance regulations in all their courses. Instructors may withdraw students from any course with a grade of W or WF on or before the midterm semester dates or with a grade of WF after the midterm semester dates if, in their judgment, absences have been excessive.
  • During the attendance verification period at the beginning of the term, a student may be dropped from a course for non-attendance. Once a student has been dropped for nonattendance, it is the responsibility of the student to re-register for the course before the drop/add period is over.
  • Students who appear on the class list and wish to drop a course must submit a drop request on SHIP or a drop form to the registrar's office during the drop/add period. Students may not assume that a faculty member will drop them from the course during attendance verification.


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Classification of Students

Students are classified as follows:

                     Hours Earned                                         Classification
                             1-29                                                      Freshman
                            30-59                                                    Sophomore
                            60-89                                                        Junior
                            90 or More                                               Senior   
   

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Course and Study Load

For students who want to complete their degree within four years, attending only fall and spring semesters, the normal course and study load is 15-18 credit hours per semester. In addition to time spent in class, students should expect to devote at least 30-36 hours a week to course preparation (about two hours in out-of-class preparation for every hour spent in class). A student who enrolls in 12 or more credit hours is, however, considered full time, with part-time status applying to those students who enroll in only 11 or fewer credit hours.
 
There are many reasons why a student may need to maintain full-time status, including
participation in athletics and enrollment in family health insurance. Additionally, students receiving benefits from the Social Security Administration must, by law, carry a minimum of 12 hours. Likewise, veterans receiving educational VA benefits must enroll for at least 12 semester hours in their approved program of study to be classified for full-time benefits.
 
Students are limited to 18 credit hours per semester. Permission to enroll for more than 18 semester hours will be granted by the Registrar’s Office under the following conditions:
-   Student has earned a 3.0 GPA in the preceding semester; or
-   Student has earned a 3.0 Overall GPA; or
-   Permission of the degree/major department head or dean; or
-   Student requires an extra course in the one or two semesters prior to graduation.
 
No student will be allowed to register for more than 21 semester hours.

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Dropping or Withdrawing from Courses

Current policy

  • A student who drops a course before the drop/add period is over does not receive a grade in the course and the course does not appear on the academic transcript.
  • A student who wishes to withdraw from a course after the drop/add period is over must obtain a withdrawal notice from Enrollment Services.  The notice must be signed by the instructor of the course and returned by the student to Enrollment Services.
  • A student who withdraws from a course after the drop/add period is over and before the mid-term semester dates will receive a W or WF at the instructor's discretion.  A student who withdraws from a course after the mid-term semester dates will receive a WF in the course.
  • A student is not allowed to drop RGTR 0199 at any time unless extenuating circumstances prevail, and the drop form must be authorized by the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts or a designated representative.

Policy effective Fall 2012:
Students are allowed to withdraw from a particular course prior to midterm with the possibility of a "withdraw" ("W") recorded, with the discretion of the professor, one time. On the second and any subsequent attempt, if a student desires to withdraw from that course, a "withdraw failure" ("WF") is automatically recorded.
 
Policy exceptions:
•    Only Armstrong course withdrawals will be considered. Therefore, W/WF grades transferred from other institutions will not count.
•    With approved documentation, hardship withdrawals from the university are possible due to circumstances of extreme duress or for military obligations. See the sections on "Withdrawing from the University" and "Hardship Withdrawal from the University" cited in the Undergraduate Catalog.
 
Policy for dropping Learning Support courses:
•    Students enrolled in both credit and a required learning support course may not withdraw from the learning support course unless they also withdraw from credit courses.
•    If a student is enrolled in two or more learning support courses and withdraws from one learning support course, the student may remain enrolled in other learning support courses and in credit courses.
•    If an instructor drops a student from the only learning support course or from all learning support courses at any time during the semester, the student will be withdrawn from all other credit courses.

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Grade Appeal Procedures

In accordance with Armstrong State University regulations, appeals for a change of grade may be initiated through the head of the appropriate academic department prior to midterm of the semester after the grade was received.  A change of grade, other than incomplete, may not be made later than two calendar semesters following the semester in which the grade was received.
A student who contests a grade will have the following line of appeal:

1.  The student will discuss the contested grade with the instructor involved.
2.  If the grade dispute remains unresolved, the student will meet with the department head/program director and the instructor. If the grade dispute is with the department head/program director, the student will meet with the dean of the college/school (or designee) and the department head/program director.  A “memorandum for the record” will be prepared by the department head (dean or designee) which will include the substance of the conversations during the meeting.  The student will receive a copy upon request.
3.  If the grade dispute remains unresolved, the student will present his or her appeal in writing to the department head/program director or the dean of the college/school (or designee), as applicable, who will then appoint a review board to hear the appeal.  The board will operate according to A-D below.  It is expected that the student will initiate this step within 45 days after the grade is posted. If the student plans enrollment in a course for which the course grade being appealed is a prerequisite, see “4” below.

a.   The review board will consist of the department head/program director or the dean of the college/school (or designee), as applicable, and two members of the department/program, not including the instructor involved.  A separate hearing officer shall be appointed by the college/school dean (or designee).  When deemed necessary by the college/school dean (or designee), membership may come from outside the department/program.
b.  The review board shall hear statements from both the student and the instructor involved and will examine documents that are pertinent to the matter under review.
c.   The review board will hear the grade appeal and present its findings to the dean of the college/school (or designee) within 30 days from the initiation of the appeal.

4.  If the student plans enrollment in a course for which the course grade being appealed is a prerequisite, then the following timetable will be met at the first of that semester/term:

a.   If a grade appeal is not resolved with the instructor concerned, the student will file an appeal in writing with the department head/program director (or the college/school dean or designee if the grade dispute is with the department head/program director).  This step will be taken by the first day of classes of the semester/term following the posting of the disputed grade.
b.  The review board to hear the appeal will be appointed by the third day of the semester.  If department/program members are not available to form a review board, the dean of the college/school, in consultation with the department head/program director, will appoint a review board.
c.   A review board will hear and complete the grade appeal by the fifth day of the semester, and present its findings to the college/school dean through the hearing officer (or the vice president if the dean is a member of the committee).
d.  If the appeal to the college/school dean is denied, the student will be removed from the official class roster of the course if the student is already enrolled.

5.  If the college/school dean denies the appeal, the student may continue the appeal to the vice president and dean of faculty. This appeal must be in writing and must be filed within five days of notification from the college/school dean.
6.  Neither the president nor the Board of Regents will accept or consider appeals based on academic grades.
 

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Grading System and Grade Point Average Calculation

                                                                                       Quality Points per
                       Grade                                                         Semester Hour
                           A                          (Excellent)                            4.0
                           B                             (Good)                               3.0
                           C                        (Satisfactory)                         2.0
                           D                           (Passing)                            1.0
                           F                            (Failure)                               0.0
                          W               (Withdrew, no penalty)                   0.0
                         WF                  (Withdrew, failing)                      0.0
                           I                         (Incomplete)                            0.0
                          IP                        (In Progress)                          0.0
                           S                        (Satisfactory)                           0.0
                           U                     (Unsatisfactory)                        0.0
                           V                     (Audit, no credit)                        0.0
                           K               (Credit by Examination)                 0.0
                         NR                (Grade Not Reported)                  0.0
 
Grade Point Average Calculation
Three academic grade point averages (GPAs) are displayed on students’ transcripts.

Institutional GPA. Determined by dividing the total honor points earned by the total hours attempted on all course work taken at Armstrong only.
Transfer GPA. Determined by dividing the total honor points earned by the total hours attempted on all transfer course work taken at other institutions.
Overall GPA. Determined by dividing the total honor points earned by the total hours attempted on all course work taken at Armstrong and elsewhere.
A HOPE GPA is calculated for HOPE scholarship recipients and displayed on the Permanent Student Record located on the web. The HOPE GPA includes all attempted hours and may differ from a student’s Overall GPA.

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Grade & Course Repeat Symbols

Grade Symbols
#          Academic Renewal (forgiveness policy). Course grade not counted in computation of grade point average. Hours earned for grades of A, B, C and S.
%         Learning support grade symbol. Course grade not counted in computation of grade point average or hours earned.
*          College preparatory curriculum. Course grade counted in computation of grade point average, but not in earned hours.
 
Course Repeat Symbols
E Course repeated. Course grade excluded from grade point average and hours earned.
I Course repeated. Course grade included in grade point average and hours earned. (See also Incomplete Grade below.)
 
The letters S and U may be used for completion of degree requirements other than academic course work (such as student teaching, clinical practice, etc.). WF (Withdrew, Failing) is recorded for any student withdrawing after the mid-term date. Grades received in learning support courses are not computed in the grade point average. Exceptions to this policy must be approved by the dean of the college in which the course is taught and will be approved only on the basis of hardship.
 
Repeating Courses
Current Policy:
When a course is repeated, only the last grade earned counts in earned hours requirements, grade point average hours, points and overall grade point average. All course work taken remains on a students’ academic records. Students may repeat any course. However, the grade earned in the last attempt will determine the number of quality points assigned for calculation of grade point average.

Policy effective Fall 2012:
Students may repeat any course. However, when a course is repeated, all grades earned for each attempt count in earned hours requirements, grade point average hours, points and overall grade point average. All course work taken remains on a student's academic records.

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Incomplete Grade

An incomplete grade that has not been removed by the midterm of the following semester is changed to a grade of F unless the instructor recommends an extension in writing, addressed to the appropriate dean.

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Withdrawing from the University

Withdrawing from the university means that a student has requested to drop all courses for the current term. A student who finds it necessary to withdraw should begin the withdrawal process in the Division of Student Affairs. The last day to formally withdraw from the university is the published last day of class for the session enrolled. Withdrawals based on military obligations must include copies of supporting military orders.
Formal withdrawal from the university is required to ensure that the student is eligible to return to Armstrong at a future date. Any refund to which a student is entitled will be considered on the basis of the withdrawal date. Grading procedures for withdrawing are the same as those listed under “Dropping Courses.”

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