This is an archived copy of the 2014-15 Catalog. To access the most recent version of the catalog, please visit http://catalog.wvu.edu.

Advising, Enrollment & Grades

In this section:

Advising:

  • Academic Advising
  • Goals of Undergraduate Education
  • Degree Works

Enrollment:

  • Academic Leave of Absence
  • Attendance Policy
  • Auditors
  • Military Leave
  • Withdrawal Policy

Grades:

  • Grading System
  • Pass/Fail Grading
  • Incomplete Grades
  • Grade Point Average
  • Repeat Policy
  • Grade Reports
  • Dean's and President's List

ADVISING

In this section:

Academic Advising

Every student at West Virginia University has access to academic advising and will be assigned an advisor. WVU students are required to meet with their academic advisors prior to registering for classes each semester. Advisors assist students in understanding major and University requirements including the General Education Curriculum (GEC); course registration planning and processes; program and course prerequisites; and academic standing (e.g. probation and suspension). In addition, advisors may assist students with planning for post-baccalaureate education and careers.

It is the student's responsibility to understand their degree requirements. Students are expected to become familiar with the Undergraduate Catalog and Degree Works and prepare for their own course planning and registration processes. 

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Goals of Undergraduate Education

WVU’s undergraduate education is designed to help students acquire a basic foundation in a variety of academic areas in addition to their major field. Students are expected to integrate the perspectives of the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and an appreciation of the arts with coursework in their major to facilitate an understanding of the world at large. This foundation for lifelong learning should provide the knowledge and skills necessary to embrace social, cultural, and technological change.
 
In addition to these various perspectives, students are expected to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills sufficient for life in contemporary society. These skills include the ability to read critically, listen critically, ask appropriate questions, gather relevant information, and apply critical analysis to reach logical conclusions. Central to these skills are mathematical literacy and proficiency in oral and written communications.
 
In preparation for life after the university, students are expected to attain proficiency in their major fields. This proficiency should enable them to be competitive in the job market or in admission to graduate or professional schools.
 
Finally, students are expected to acquire knowledge, understanding, and an appreciation of diversity in languages, cultures, ideas, and peoples, along with a desire to work so that all individuals are treated in a manner consistent with social justice. We hope that students will maintain a lifelong commitment to ethical behavior, responsible citizenship, and public service.
 
One of the primary ways in which students accomplish WVU’s goals of undergraduate education is through completion of the nine General Education Curriculum (GEC) objectives. Each of the objectives is satisfied by completion of courses designated as GEC courses. For a description of the General Education Curriculum and a listing of approved courses, visit the Office of Registrar’s website: http://registrar.wvu.edu/ .

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Degree Works

Degree Works is the online advising and degree auditing tool at WVU. All undergraduate students should have a completed audit for graduation. Some graduate programs also have an audit available in Degree Works. Please refer to this system regularly. Students can access Degree Works through their MIX account. More information is available at http://registrar.wvu.edu/dw .

Degree Works is NOT an official evaluation. All degree requirements must be verified by student's college or school prior to graduation. Students are responsible for complying with all academic policies published in the University catalog. If students have any questions about the information presented in this audit, they are encouraged to contact their advisor or the Office of the University Registrar at registrar@mail.wvu.edu.

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ENROLLMENT

In this section:

Academic Leave of Absence

WVU offers undergraduate students in good standing, as defined by WVU’s uniform suspension policy, and not subject to disciplinary action the opportunity to request an academic leave of absence. The academic leave of absence is designed for the student who wishes to be away from his or her academic endeavors at WVU for one or more se­mesters but intends to return at a later date. Leave of absence status must be requested before the beginning of the semester for which the leave is desired. The academic records of students on an academic leave of absence remain in an active status. While on an academic leave of absence, the student retains the right to use certain campus facilities and will continue to receive communications from WVU. To request a leave of absence, a student must complete the Leave of Absence form found on the Office of the University Registrar's website.

When a student decides to return to WVU after his or her academic leave of absence, application fees are waived. An overall grade point average of 2.0 on all work attempted while on leave combined with the WVU grade point average is acceptable. Students who have non-academic holds (delinquent loans, outstanding fees, etc.) will not be permitted to return from a leave of absence until all outstanding debts have been resolved. If a student fails to return to WVU by the stated leave of absence return date, the student is removed from active status and the student's record is deactivated.

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Attendance Policy

Importance of Class Attendance

At West Virginia University, class attendance contributes significantly to academic success. Students who attend classes regularly tend to earn higher grades and have higher passing rates in courses. Excessive absences may jeopardize students' grades or even their ability to continue in their courses. There is a strong correlation between regular class attendance and academic success. Faculty are strongly encouraged to require attendance in all 100-level classes. (*)

Attendance Policies

Instructors must set attendance policies that are appropriate for the goals and instructional strategies of their courses. Instructors may include attendance records in determining the final course grade. All attendance policies that affect students' grades must be announced in writing within the first week of class. Moreover, instructors are responsible for keeping accurate enrollment records, and for keeping accurate attendance records when attendance is used in grading. Attendance policies thought to violate the statement on student attendance should first be discussed with the instructor, then with the department chair, and finally the college dean, if necessary.

Class Absences

Students who are absent from class for any reason are responsible for all missed work and for contacting their instructors promptly, unless the instructors' policies require otherwise. However, instructors cannot require documentation of student illness from any medical provider as part of an attendance policy, since medical conditions are confidential and frequently not verifiable.

Make-Up Examinations

Students absent from regularly scheduled examinations because of authorized University activities will have the opportunity to take them at an alternate time. Such make-up examinations should be of comparable difficulty to the original examination. Students in courses with regularly scheduled evening examinations shall have the opportunity to make up these examinations if they miss them in order to attend a regularly scheduled class that meets at the same time. Such make-up examinations should be of comparable difficulty to the original examination. Attendance at a regularly scheduled evening examination will not excuse a student from a regularly scheduled class that meets at the same time as the examination.

Days of Special Concern

Instructors are urged not to schedule examinations or field trips on "Days of Special Concern" that are identified in the Schedule of Courses.

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Auditors

An auditor may register for courses and must pay full fees but does not receive credit for the course. A student who audits a course must let one semester pass before enrolling in the course for credit. A student may change his or her status from audit to grade or grade to audit only during the registration period. Attendance requirements for auditors are determined by the instructor of the course. The instructor may direct the Office of the University Registrar to remove an auditor from a class list or grade report if attendance requirements are not met.

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Military Leave

Students Called to Serve in the Military

  1. Students who withdraw from the University for military service up to and including the 12th week of the semester will receive a full refund of their fees and be administratively withdrawn from their classes. No course grades or credit will be awarded.
  2. Students who leave the University for military service after the 12th week of the semester should work with the designated contact person in their home college (usually the academic associate/assistant dean). The student may also contact the Office of the University Registrar (304-293-5355). The contact person will assist the student in reviewing the student's eligibility for credit for their courses on a course-by course basis with the instructors.
  3. The contact person will work with the student's instructors to gather grade information for the student. If the course is not in the student's home college, the contact person can work with his/her counterpart in the appropriate college. Several outcomes are possible:
    1. If the course is substantially complete and the student has done passing work, the student should receive the grade earned at that time. It is anticipated that this would be the outcome in the majority of the courses. NOTE: Students who receive orders with sufficient advance notice are expected to notify their professors of their upcoming deployment date and meet with their professors to come to an agreement on what regular course assignments they can reasonably complete prior to the deployment date (the details of this arrangement should be included in a contract initialed by both the instructor and the student; contracts must be placed in the student's file). Students should not be penalized for not completing assignments, quizzes, tests, or exams due after their deployment date.
    2. If a critical competency has yet to be covered in a competency-based course, the instructor should award a grade of "I" and work with the student to develop a plan to complete that critical part of the course. To alleviate confusion at a later date, the plan should be in writing and signed by both the instructor and the student. Students called to active duty for a relatively short duration that includes exam week may arrange for an "I" with provision to make up the final exam after completing the period of duty.
    3. If the student chooses to withdraw from the course. the contact person will work with the appropriate University office to provide an administrative withdrawal.

Leave for Military Drill

In accordance with the “Veteran Friendly” designation, WVU faculty may allow students who are members of the US Armed Forces (including the National Guard and Active Reserve) to make up tests and assignments that are missed during a semester if the student is officially called up for military service requirements for a limited period and if the delayed coursework completion will not irreversibly impact the student’s ability to appropriately master the required subject matter. Absence due to required military obligation should not exceed a cumulative amount of three weeks. Students should notify faculty members of the circumstances of their absence as far in advance as possible and work with faculty members to agree upon a plan of action for completing course requirements.

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Withdrawal Policy

There are two types of withdrawals: withdrawal from individual courses for which a student has registered and a complete withdrawal from the University. Deadlines for withdrawals for each semester are available at: http://registrar.wvu.edu/current_students/withdrawal_policies . If students follow all established University procedures and withdraw before the published deadline, they will receive a W on their transcript. The grade point average is not affected in any way by this mark. If formal withdrawal procedures are not executed by the student, a failing grade/s will be recorded. It is the student’s responsibility to see that all forms are properly executed and delivered to the appropriate authorities for recording.

Withdrawal/Drop From Individual Classes

Students may drop individual classes within a term based on established deadlines. These deadlines are posted on the Office of the University Registrar’s website. Students, with the help of their academic advisors, are responsible for determining:

  • If their course load would be reduced below the minimum requirement set by their program
  • If their course load would be reduced below the minimum hours required to qualify for a graduate assistantship, financial aid, or international full-time student status
  • If the course to be dropped is a co-requisite for another course the student is taking or a prerequisite for a course required the following semester. The student may be required to drop the co-requisite course or asked to take a substitute course the following semester.

Withdrawal From All Classes for the Term

Students may withdraw from WVU for the term in which they are enrolled at anytime before the last day of classes of the term on which regular classes are scheduled to meet. Students will receive grades of W in all classes for that term.

Procedures

  1. To withdraw from all classes through the last day to drop a class with a W, a student would log on to their MIX account and drop their classes through STAR.
  2. To withdraw from the term after the last day to drop a class with a W, a student must submit a request to the Office of the University Registrar. Instructions for submitting this request (in person or by email, mail, or fax) are found on the Office of the University Registrar's website

Important Notice:  Financial aid recipients who withdraw from all classes before sixty percent of the term is completed may be required to return a portion of any financial aid that was received for the term. Students who do not receive at least one passing grade for classes in a term must provide documentation which verifies continued participation in educational activities. If documentation cannot be provided, those students are considered to have informally withdrawn from WVU prior to sixty percent of the term and may be required to return a portion of any financial aid which was received. This review and return of financial aid is done in accordance with federal regulations.

Re-Enrollment After Withdrawal

After a student withdraws from WVU in two consecutive semesters (excluding sum­mer sessions), a student may not register for further work without approval of the dean of the college or school in which the student wants to register. Enrollment is subject to conditions set by that dean. In the case of a general studies major, the student must seek approval from the director of the University College.

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GRADES

  In this section:

Grading System

Grade Description
AExcellent (Given only to students of superior ability and attainment)
BGood (Given only to students who are well above average but not in the highest group.)
CFair (Average for undergraduate students.)
DPoor but passing (Cannot be counted for graduate credit.)
FFailure
IIncomplete
WWithdrawal from a course before the date specified in the University calendar.
PPass (See Pass/Fail grading below)
XAuditor, no grade and no credit.
CRCredit but no grade
PRProgress; final grade to be issued at end of second semester (HSC)
SSatisfactory
UUnsatisfactory
HHonors course (Professional school courses only)
IFIncomplete grade not removed by next regular term (Computed as an F.)
UFUnforgivable F (Not eligible for D/F repeat policy.)

 

Note: Grades that are not reported by faculty at the end of a term will be designated with an NR on the official transcript. Grades that are not reported will become an F at the conclusion of the next semester if a final grade is not submitted.

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Pass/Fail Grading

Pass/fail grading encourages students to take elective courses not related to their degree concentrations. Pass/fail grading also facilitates grading in competency-based courses that may be an integral part of an academic program.

Any full-time student who has completed fifteen hours or more and who has maintained a 2.0 grade point average may take a maximum of four hours each semester or summer term on a pass/fail basis. Any course taken on a pass/fail basis must be a free elective. Students are limited to a total of eighteen hours of pass/fail credit in the collegiate career. Unless otherwise indicated, courses in the major, courses in other subjects that are required by the major, and courses taken to satisfy University, college, school, or departmental requirements are excluded from pass/fail. For example, courses elected to satisfy the General Education Curriculum (GEC) or foreign language requirements may not be taken for pass/fail grading.

A course taken on a pass/fail basis is graded as a graded course. The instructor turns in the appropriate letter grade to the Office of the University Registrar. This letter grade is then converted to a P on the basis of A, B, C, or D for a pass and F for a fail. The grade of P does not affect your grade point average. However, any F grade affects a student’s grade point average whether it is a regular grade or a pass/fail grade.

A student chooses the option of pass/fail grading for a course during the registration period. Once the registration period has ended, he or she may not change the grade status in the course.

A department or unit may designate any performance- or competency-based course as exclusively pass/fail. To institute this, the college or school must have the approval of the Faculty Senate. Courses offered only as pass/fail are not included in the maximum of eighteen hours that may be freely elected as pass/fail under the student option.

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Incomplete Grades

A grade of “I” (Incomplete) is a temporary grade assignment used when unforeseen, non-academic circumstances arise that prohibit students from completing the last assignment at the end of the semester.  The grade of Incomplete is typically assigned because of an excused absence from the final examination, or because the work is unavoidably incomplete, as determined by the faculty member in consultation with the Dean.  Students who are failing a course (exclusive of the incomplete work) may not request an Incomplete.

Students who want be considered for an Incomplete must apply to their instructor prior to the end of the term; if the instructor agrees, the instructor and the student must negotiate the conditions under which the grade of “I” will be changed to a letter grade and sign a contract.  The date to submit the incomplete work should not be set beyond the last day of class of the following semester.  

To remove the grade of I, a student does not register for the course again. 

If a student does not complete the course requirements as stipulated in the contract or by the expiration date, the I grade will be replaced with an IF.

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Grade Point Average

Grade Points

Each letter grade has a numeric value. Grade points are based on this number value and the credit hour value of the course.

  • A- 4
  • B- 3
  • C- 2
  • D- 1
  • F- 0
  • I- 0
  • U- 0

The grade point average is computed on all work for which a student registers, with the following exceptions:

  • Courses with a grade of W, P, S, and X carry no grade value. The grade of incomplete (I) initially carries no grade value.
  • When a student receives the grade of I and the incomplete grade is later removed, the grade point average is calculated on the basis of the new grade. If the I grade is not removed within the next semester, the grade is treated as an F (failure).
  • If a student is working toward teacher certification, he or she is responsible for every registration in a course in which the grade of A, B, C, D, F, P, X or I is received.

Grade Point Average

All academic units of the University have minimum standards of scholastic quality that must be met or exceeded. Grade point average (GPA) is computed on grades earned in courses taken at WVU and institutions in the West Virginia system of higher education; beginning in January 2012, grades earned in baccalaureate-level college work attempted at other accredited institutions are also included in the calculation of the overall GPA. To be eligible to receive a baccalaureate, a student must have a GPA of at least 2.0 at the time of graduation. Some degree programs require a higher grade point average overall or in the major courses. GPA is based on all work for which a student received a letter grade other than W, and P. See D/F Repeat Policy. The grade point average for honors consideration for a baccalaureate is based on baccalaureate-level college work attempted at WVU as well as other accredited institutions.

Students are responsible for knowing their grade point standing and can obtain the necessary information from their advisor or the dean of their college or school. GPA is determined according to the method described in the section on grade points.

GPA Calculation

  1. Students need to know how to calculate their overall and semester grade point averages. The following example shows how to do it. Assume you are registered for 16 hours and receive the following grades in these courses:
    1. English 101 – B
    2. Mathematics 126 - A
    3. Geology 101 - C
    4. Political Science 101 - B
    5. Spanish 101 - D
    6. Psychology 201 - P
  2. Course, Credits, Grade, Value, Credits x Value, Grade Points Earned
    1. English 101, 3, B, 3, 3 x 3 = 9
    2. Geology 101, 3, C, 2, 3 x 2 = 6
    3. Spanish 101, 3, D, 1, 3 x 1 = 3
    4. Mathematics 126, 3, A, 4, 3 x 4 =12
    5. Political Sci. 101, 3, B, 3, 3 x 3 = 9
    6. Psychology 201, 1, P, 0, 1 x 0 = 0
  3. Multiply the credit by the grade value to get the grade points earned for each course
  4. Add the total grade points, in this case, 39.
  5. Divide the total grade points earned by the total credit hours with a grade value. Remember that P grades have no grade value, so in this case, there are 15 credit hours for the GPA calculation: 39 divided by 15 = grade point average of 2.6.

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Repeat Policy

D/F Repeat

WVU has a D/F repeat policy for undergraduate students who have not received their initial baccalaureate degree. If a student earns a D or F in a course at WVU or at any school in the WV State System and the course is taken no later than the semester or summer term in which the student completes the sixtieth hour (including any class in which the student earns a grade and transfer classes), the student may “D/F repeat” that course. Hours from the Intensive English Program do count towards the sixty hours. The course can be repeated only at WVU Morgantown or at one of WVU’s divisional campuses. Students have only one opportunity to improve their original grades under the D/F repeat policy. The new grade becomes the grade that counts toward the student’s cumulative GPA and credit hours for graduation, even if the repeated course grade is lower than the original grade in the course. The D/F repeat policy will be enacted any time an eligible course is repeated.

When a course is D/F repeated, the following procedure occurs:

  1. The original grade is disregarded for the purpose of determining the overall GPA; it is marked as excluded (E) in the semester that the student originally took the course.
  2. The original grade is not deleted from the student’s permanent record.
  3. The second grade is entered on the student’s transcript and marked as included (I) in the semester that the course was repeated.
  4. Grades of Unforgivable F (UF) are not eligible for D/F repeat. Such a failure is indicated on the student’s permanent record by an UF and is calculated in the GPA.

Other Repeated Courses

Courses repeated, but not eligible for the provisions of the D/F repeat policy, follow this procedure:

  1. The original grade is included in determining the overall GPA. It is excluded from earned or degree hours and is marked with an (A).
  2. The original grade is not deleted from the student’s permanent record.
  3. The second grade is entered on the student’s transcript and marked as included (I) in the semester that the course was repeated.
  4. Courses repeated more than once are handled the same way with the final attempt carrying earned or degree hours. All attempts are used for determining the GPA.

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Grade Reports

During the seventh week of classes in the fall and spring semesters, instructors submit a grade for all undergraduate students earning grades of D or F in undergraduate courses. These grades are used for counseling, are not recorded on the student’s official transcript, and disappear from the computer system after the semester is completed. These grades are sent first to the Office of the University Registrar and then to the student via MIX.

Final grades are due to the Office of the University Registrar within 48 hours after the end of the University’s final examination and are viewable to students within one week of submission to the Office of the University Registrar. The final grades of all seniors provisionally approved for graduation at the close of each semester or summer term are reported to the deans of the students’ colleges or schools. Special report forms for this purpose are supplied by the student’s dean.

At the end of each semester, grades are available through MIX.

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Dean's and President's List

Outstanding undergraduate academic achievement is recognized by awarding President's List and Dean's List status to students who obtain a 4.0 GPA or 3.5 GPA, respectively. Only the highest honor is awarded, and it will be noted on the transcript. Students must be enrolled in 12 credit hours or more of graded courses to be eligible for such recognition with no grades of I (incomplete), NR (not reported), or W (withdrawal).

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