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Academic Progress and Student Responsibility
Each student is responsible for observing all regulations in the UArts Course Catalogue that may affect academic progress, financial obligations, relationships with University authorities, transferability of credits, acceptance of credits for graduation, and eligibility to graduate, as well as:
- Knowing regulation regarding withdrawals, refund deadlines, program changes, and academic policy;
- Registering each semester in accordance with the posted schedule (see Academic Calendar). Failure to register will result in a late registration fee; and
- Meeting any financial or academic requirements that have caused a hold to be placed on their student record. A student cannot officially register until clearance has been obtained from Student Financial Services.
Academic advising at the University is designed to assist students in directing and completing their degree programs by providing guidance through contact with informed advisors and information available in various UArts publications. Students are expected to refer to the University Course Catalogue and online course listings for information on policies, procedures, and deadlines. Students are assigned a faculty advisor in their department and, when in doubt about any College or University regulation should seek advice from their academic advisor or the Office of the Registrar.
Academic Intervention and Student Success
The University employs a multi-faceted strategy to promote student success. This strategy includes, but is not limited to the following:
- Clear statements of academic requirements and expectations within each course, each major, and the University as a whole can be found on course syllabi, in the University catalogue, and in each student’s degree audit.
- A student’s instructor, advisor, or department director/chair are available to respond to questions about requirements and expectations. The College/Division Deans Offices are also an excellent source of additional information or clarification on these matters.
- The University Catalogue defines in the Academic Policies section, the policies concerning issues like minimum course grades, attendance requirements, and withdrawal from a course or program.
- Direct communication between the instructor and the student may be conducted through individual meetings (both informal and scheduled), in-class conversations, telephone calls, comments on returned papers and projects, e-mail, and use of the course space in Sakai. Therefore, it is essential that all students regularly use and check their UArts e-mail accounts, the Sakai site for each course in which they are enrolled, and keep their contact information up to date. Faculty publish their contact information and any scheduled office hours on their syllabi. Students are also encouraged to contact faculty through their departmental offices.
- Mid-semester Progress Reports. Undergraduate students who are designated members of the Academic Achievement Program, or who are already on Academic Probation, and all students taking LACR 008, 009, 100, 101,102, and/or 103 (ESL and First-Year Writing) are evaluated at mid-semester by their instructors. These reports are shared with their advisors and the Associate Dean of Students. The information collected is used to help identify and conduct outreach to students who would benefit from interventions such as tutoring, counseling, or a change in schedule.
Deficiency Notices. In the event that a student is not performing well in a course, instructors are to send a deficiency notice to the student. Deficiency notices can be set at any point in a semester, and will be copied to the student’s advisor and the college dean. Once a deficiency notice has been received, a student is strongly encouraged to meet with his/her instructor and advisor as soon after receiving the deficiency notice as possible. Unsatisfactory performance may be based on exessive absences; inappropriate or inadequate classroom participation; the quality of work submitted, performed, or created for the class; or the outcome of exams or other assignments given by the instructor either in class or as listed on the syllabus.
- Students whose performance falls below a defined standard are placed on academic probation. A probation letter offers suggestions or requirements that are aimed at improving performance and preventing academic dismissal. For more details see Academic Standing.
- . First-year students placed on academic probation after the fall of their freshmen year are required to participate in the semester-long seminar during the subsequent spring semester. This course will teach students how to make stronger connections between their studio and other coursework, train them in strategies for becoming more organized and efficient, and help them make a better transition to a rigorous college curriculum.
Academic advising at the University is designed to provide maximum information and assistance to students from the time they enter the University in their Freshman year until they complete all degree requirements for their program.
Each student is assigned an advisor, the student is required to meet with his/her advisor at least once each semester to discuss the student’s academic program. Students are encouraged to seek out the advisor as soon as any difficulties begin to occur.
Students have access to their academic records and Faculty advisors also have access to degree audits and transcripts for the students they advise following the recording of grades each semester. Advising is a shared responsibility between the department and the student. Each must remain informed about the student’s progress toward graduation.
Undergraduate Grade Point Average (GPA) Requirements
Undergraduate students who maintain a minimum 2.0 cumulative and semester grade point average (GPA) are considered to be in good standing. In some programs students must also satisfy minimum grade requirements in major coursework.
Students who have taken incompletes will not be evaluated by the Academic Review Committee until the seventh week of the following semester, when final grades are due. Please note that, as a result, financial aid for the semester in progress may be adversely affected.
The College of Art, Media, and Design GPA Requirements
The professional orientation and preparation for many of the College of Art, Media, and Design’s undergraduate major degree programs require students to achieve beyond the University’s minimum academic standards.
Students must achieve a grade of C or better in major course requirements and any required courses in other departments, including a discipline history if applicable. Students majoring in the following areas who receive a grade of C- or lower in a required major course must repeat the course.
Film & Video*
Multidisciplinary Fine Arts
Writing for Film and Television*
*Minimum grade requirements begin with the sophomore year’s major coursework for these programs.
The College of Performing Arts
The Ira Brind School of Theater Arts and the School of Music each have minimum grade requirements for their students. Please see each School’s policy page for details.
Graduate Grade Point Average (GPA) Requirements
A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for good standing and for graduation for graduate students. If a student is unable to achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.0, he or she will be placed on probation. The student must then bring his/her GPA back to at least 3.0 by the end of the next semester or face dismissal from the program. While on probation, a student is not eligible to hold a graduate assistantship or to receive a University supplemental grant-in-aid or scholarship.
A student’s academic standing is determined at the end of the fall and spring semesters on the basis of attempted semester credits and cumulative grade point average. To retain good academic standing, students must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 for undergraduates and 3.0 for graduate students and meet all minimum grade requirements of their major program. Additionally, full-time students must complete a minimum of 24 credits in an academic year (including summer sessions).
The University periodically reviews the student’s cumulative record in order to ensure good academic standing. A student’s normal and satisfactory progress toward degree requirements for their program is of primary concern in determining academic standing is. When the University notes problems in academic performance that may jeopardize a student’s standing, the student will be notified.
Students who have received an Incomplete will not have their academic standing evaluated until the seventh week of the following semester, when final grades are due. Please note that, as a result, financial aid for the semester in progress may be adveresly affected.
Academic probation is a means of emphatically informing students that their record is unsatisfactory while there is still time to remedy the situation. Students will be placed on academic probation whenever their records indicate that normal progress toward a degree is in jeopardy. Probation is not intended to be a penalty, but should be interpreted as a serious warning to improve the quality of academic work. Students on probation are not allowed to take more than a normal course load, and may be required to take a reduced course load. Students on probation will not be able to participate in, or hold an elected or appointed office in any University-recognized student organization. Appropriate programmatic restrictions may be placed on the student by the major program. Students on probation should reduce the number of hours of employment whenever possible and limit participation in any other extracurricular activities that interfere with the performance of their academic work.
At the end of each semester (Fall and Spring), students placed on probation or disissed will be notified of their academic standing.
First-year students placed on probation after the fall semester of their freshmen year are required to participate in a semester-long seminar during the subsequent spring semester. For more details, please see the Academic Intervention and Student Success area above. This course will teach students how to make stronger connections between their studio and other coursework, train them in strategies for becoming more organized and efficient, and help them make a better transition to a rigorous college curriculum.
If a student is placed on probation at the end of a given semester and remains on probation at the end of the following semester, the student will receive a notification that he or she is academically dismissed from the University. Students may choose to appeal their dismissal notice through the Academic Standards Committee, which convenes dismissal hearings in early January for fall dismissals, and late May or early June for spring dismissals. During the appeal process, the Academic Standards Committee will review all pertinent information, including but not limited to the student’s academic and judicial record. Dismissal letters will provide students with complete information concerning how they may appeal.
After reviewing a student’s appeal, the Academic Standards Committee may act to sustain the dismissal, or elect to overturn the student’s dismissal effective immediately. When students are allowed to continue their studies at the University, they are placed on terminal probation by the Committee, which may also stipulate certain actions that the student must take during the following semester. Details of the Committee’s actions will be presented to the student in a formal letter.
Students are invited to present their appeals in person; however, if the student cannot be present at the hearing, he or she may conduct the appeal entirely in writing. Appeals normally request readmission for the following semester, but an appeal may request readmission after a semester’s leave of absence.
If a student is readmitted to the University following an appeal to the Academic Standards Committee, a semester will be stipulated for re-admission. If a student wishes to enter more than one year from the original semester indicated on their letter, their requests for readmission must be resubmitted to the Academic Standards Committee for re-evaluation.
When a student is placed on terminal probation by the Academic Standards Committee the student must meet the stipulations established for them in the following semester. Failure to do so will result in automatic dismissal from the University.
Students dismissed from the University can apply for reentry to the University after two semesters. Such applications for reentry are reviewed by the Academic Standards Committee twice per year; in May for reentry for the fall semester, and in November for reentry for the spring semester. Students applying for reentry should be prepared to demonstrate sustained improvement in their academic performance. This can be done by presenting a transcript for at least two terms of academic work done at another accredited institution of higher education subsequent to the student’s dismissal from the University of the Arts.
In addition to Academic Dismissal, the University may dismiss students for disciplinary reasons. In such cases, students will automatically receive the grade of W for all classes in which they were enrolled at the time of dismissal unless the dismissal occurs after the withdrawal deadline, in which case the student will receive the grade of F for all classes. For more information on disciplinary action, please refer to Section 8: Student Code of Conduct in the Student Handbook.
Academic Grievance Procedure Including Requests for a Change of Grade
Students who have a concern or grievance regarding an academic matter, other than actions taken by the Academic Standards Committee, may use the following process to address those concerns. If the concern or grievance is directly related to actions taken by the Academic Standards Committee, please submit a letter of grievance directly to the Office of the Provost.
Grievances must be submitted no later than the end of the seventh week of the semester following the one in which the cause of the grievance occurred. This deadline has been set to allow time for the resolution of incomplete grades from the previous semester in accordance with the policies noted elsewhere in this catalogue. Please also note that grade grievances from students who have graduated must adhere to the guidelines noted at the end of this section.
In the event that the student feels the need for a neutral advocate, the student may request the assistance of any staff member of the University at any stage of the grievance process.
- Students who have a concern or grievance regarding an academic matter are encouraged to discuss their concern directly with the instructor.
- Students not comfortable presenting their concern in person, or not satisfied with the outcome of the discussion, should submit their grievance in writing to the instructor, and send a copy to the chair/director of the department/school in which the instructor teaches, and the dean of the college.
- The instructor should respond to the student, in writing, in a timely manner. The department Chair/Director or Dean of Liberal Arts is available for consultation by either the student or the faculty member, and must be copied on the instructor’s response. The chair/director/Dean of Liberal Arts has the right to forward the concern to the Office of the Dean (or the Associate Provost in the case of the Dean of Liberal Arts) should he/she conclude that either the student or instructor’s concerns warrant further review or intervention.
- If the student believes that his/her concern requires further attention, he/she may submit the matter in writing to the Office of the Dean of the college in which the course is offered, or to the Office of the Provost in regards to an issue emerging from a liberal arts course.
- The College Dean (Associate Provost for Liberal Arts’ cases) should rule on the case in a timely manner . If the College Dean (or Associate Provost) does not wish to rule on the matter, he/she may convene an Academic Grievance Committee to review the concern. The composition of the Academic Grievance Committee is determined by the Dean (Associate Provost in Liberal Arts’ cases.
- As a last resort, the Office of the Dean, Associate Provost in Liberal Arts’ cases or the student may forward concerns to the Office of the Provost for final resolution.
Change of Grade
An instructor may change a grade only if an error occurred in computing or recording the final grade, or if re-evaluation of previously submitted work is warranted. Extra work, beyond that required of other class members during the period when the class met, or work handed in after the completion of the course, may not be offered as reasons for a grade change, except in instances of replacing a grade of Incomplete.
If a student questions the correctness or appropriateness of a grade, the student should address his/her concern in accordance with the Academic Grievance Procedures listed above. Any change of a final grade should be made by the course instructor, who should submit the signed Change of Grade form, including the signature of the appropriate dean, to the Office of the Registrar no later than the end of the semester following the one in which the grade was given.
Please note that graduated students who wish to seek a change of grade or file an academic grievance must do so no later than three days after the last grades required to fulfill degree requirements are posted.
Academic Honesty/Integrity Policy
Academic Integrity is a commitment to the core values of honesty, trust, fairness, respect and responsibility and their role in ensuring the health and vigor of the academic and creative community. Please note that students are encouraged to contact their instructors and/or the University librarians for guidance in maintaining academic integrity in their work.
Violations of Academic Integrity
Violations of academic integrity are considered to be acts of academic dishonesty and include but are not limited to cheating, plagiarizing, fabrication, denying others access to information or material, and facilitating academic dishonesty, and are subject to the policies and procedures noted here and within the Course Catalogue, including the Student Code of Conduct and the Student Judicial System. Please note that lack of knowledge of citations procedures, for example, is an unacceptable explanation for plagiarism, as is having studied together to produce remarkably similar papers or creative works submitted separately by two students.
Procedures for Addressing Violations of Academic Integrity
If an instructor suspects a student of any violation of academic integrity, the following process is to be followed:
- After an initial consultation with the Chair/Director/Dean of Liberal Arts where the infraction is identified and its seriousness assessed, the instructor must address the situation with the student, either in writing or in person. After having addressed the situation with the student, the instructor shall determine an appropriate course of action within his/her purview as a member of the teaching faculty. (Please refer to the “Sanctions” section of this policy for possible actions to be taken in such cases.)
- In the case of Assignment Sanctions (see below), the instructor may submit a written summary as outlined above if s/he deems it to be warranted.
- In the case of Course Sanctions (see below), the instructor may submit a written summary as outlined above if s/he deems it to be warranted.
- In cases where either the Associate Provost or the instructor determines that the offense merits consideration by the Campus Standards Committee, the instructor works in conjunction with the Associate Provost to formally refer the case to the Campus Standards Committee.
- In all academic integrity matters that are handled by the faculty member, notification of the sanctions, if any, must be sent to the Provost’s office, which will notify the office of student affairs and dean of students. Students who receive numerous violations of academic integrity may be brought before a Campus Standards Committee.
After consulting with the department chair/director/Dean of Liberal Arts, it is up to the instructor to determine how serious the offense is (based on her/his academic standards and expectations) as it relates to the sanctions to be imposed within his or her course. Both the Associate Provost and the instructor have the right to determine whether the offense warrants advancement to the Campus Standards Committee. The Associate Provost must be kept apprised by the instructor of the actions taken. If it is judged that a student has violated the University’s standards for academic integrity, sanctions may include but are not limited to:
- Repeating the assignment or completing an additional assignment. (Please note that when sanctions are imposed in this manner, students become ineligible for an Incomplete or a Withdrawal from the course in which the sanctions are imposed if it is pursued as a result of the sanction.);
- Failure of the assignment with no opportunity to repeat it. No points will be earned for the assignment (that is, an F will equal a “0”).
- Issuance of a warning or verbal reprimand with a written description of the interaction by the instructor. Copies of such reprimands must be kept by the instructor, and submitted to the Office of the Provost who will forward copies to the Student’s Judicial File and the student;
- Failure of the class;
- Referral to the Campus Standards Committee for possible actions that may include but are not limited to suspension, dismissal or expulsion. Such referral is likely in the extreme or repeated cases involving a violation of academic integrity.
This list is compiled each semester in the respective deans’ offices. The Dean’s List honors those undergraduate students who have met the following criteria:
- Students are full-time undergraduate degree candidates. Candidates for certificate, diploma, and master’s degrees are not eligible.
- A minimum semester GPA of 3.60.
- No grade lower than a B in any course.
- No grade of I or F in any course.
- Enrolled in at least 12 credits for a letter grade.
Full participation is expected of all UArts students and is necessary to fully benefit from and succeed in the University’s programs of study. Absences from class may result in a lowered grade or an F in the course, depending on the attendance policies stated by the instructor on the course syllabus. It is the responsibility of the student to arrange with his/her instructor(s) to make up all missed work. Failure to do so will affect the student’s grade.
In the event that absences are the result of extraordinary, documented circumstances and are numerous enough that it is impossible for the student to qualify for advancement, the student may be advised to withdraw from the course. If the course is required for the degree, the student will also be required to repeat the course in a subsequent semester.
All students are expected to attend classes regularly and promptly, and for the duration of the scheduled instructional time. Individual instructors will decide the optimum time for taking attendance and may penalize for habitual lateness or absence. Repeated absences may result in a grade of “F” for a course.
Students who withdraw from a course or the University must do so through the Registrar’s Office. Non-attendance does not constitute an official withdrawal.
Change in Degree Requirements / Time Limit to Degree
Undergraduate students who have not completed degree requirements within ten years from the date of initial matriculation may be subject to new degree requirements, which will be determined by the department chairperson and the Office of the Registrar on a case-by-case basis.
Class/Lesson Cancellations or Lateness of Instructor
Every effort will be made to notify students of class cancellations prior to the start of class. In the absence of such notification and when the instructor is not present, students are expected to wait 10 minutes for an hour-long class/lesson and 15 minutes for those of longer duration. In the event the instructor fails to appear within the 10-15 minute waiting period, students are to report to the appropriate School Director’s or Department Chairperson’s office and may then leave without penalty.