Policies & Procedures
Auditing a Course
Cancellation of Classes
Change of Status
Credit by Examination
Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA)
Proficiency Appeals Procedure
Standards for Graduation
Taking a Course at another Institution
Withdrawal from Courses
Withdrawal or Leave of Absence from WCSU
In order to remain in good academic standing at the university and be granted a diploma, you must maintain a cumulative average of at least 2.0 (“C”). Professional curricula and some major programs have additional and/or higher academic standards which the student must meet at specific intervals.
Log on to WestConnduit.wcsu.edu to access your midsemester grades. If you receive a midsemester grade of “D,” “F,” or ”INC,” consider this report a warning that you may be placed on academic probation. Any grade of “D” or “F” during the semester also constitutes an academic warning and may result in academic probation.
Academic probation letters from the dean are sent at the end of the semester to each first semester freshman with a grade-point average below 1.7 and to all other students with averages below 2.0. If you are placed on probation, you must meet with your academic adviser to review your program requirements, course selections, credit loads, and other pertinent information.
The probationary period will commence the semester following the one for which the letter of probation was issued. The dean will review the student’s activities during the period of probation.
Probation is for one semester. If you do not achieve an acceptable average by the end of the semester that you are on probation, you may be suspended for academic deficiency.
Students on probation should consider a semester course load of 12 credit hours and limit their participation in extra-curricular activities. Appeals to these policies should be made to the appropriate dean who, for extenuating circumstances only, may waive the policy.
Note: Individual Schools or programs may have standards for probation and dismissal from the school or program which are higher than the university’s standards. A student can be on probation or be dismissed from a school or program and still be in good standing at the university.
A student suspended for academic reasons is no longer a degree candidate. A suspended student may, however, enroll in up to nine credits per semester in as a nonmatriculant. A student may reapply for admission when his/her cumulative grade-point average reaches the minimum university, department or school admission criterion. Eligibility for readmission does not automatically lead to readmission to WestConn but only to consideration for readmission by the director of University Admissions.
Credits earned at other institutions are not used to raise a student’s cumulative grade point average. Students who, for academic reasons, are suspended a second time will be dismissed and are not eligible for readmission except under the Fresh Start Policy
Students may audit any course with permission of the instructor. Auditors are subject to those conditions established by the instructor. You must obtain approval to audit within the first four weeks for full semester courses or within the first two weeks for courses scheduled less than a full semester. Audited courses carry no credit. Audit forms may be obtained at the Registrar’s Office.
The academic deans reserve the right to make changes in personnel to teach a course and to cancel or reschedule any course offered should the change become necessary
Students must contact the Registrar’s Office if they wish to change their status from part-time to full-time or from full-time to part-time so bills can be assessed properly. These changes can be made from the day of registration through the first week of classes.
All candidates for the bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, bachelor of business administration, bachelor of music and associate in science degrees are expected to attend the commencement exercises held in May.
Undergraduate who will be within eight credits of those required for the degree are eligible to participate in the commencement exercises if they have applied for August graduation and intend to complete their requirements during the summer.
It is possible to earn academic credit through an examination procedure. The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) offers the opportunity to earn credits in a variety of subject areas including accounting, economics, educational psychology, English literature and composition, foreign languages, history, humanistic studies, marketing, mathematics, natural science, psychology, and sociology. Additional subject areas are covered by other examinations. You may not receive credit for both taking a course and passing its equivalent examination. For information on what specific examinations are available to you, and details on University policy regarding credit by examination, contact the Office of Student Life, 837-8494.
Full-time Undergraduate Students
Dean's List recognition is awarded each semester to full-time matriculated students with satisfactory completion of a minimum of 12 graded semester hour credits and a 3.5 semester average, with no "incompletes" for the semester at the time grades were processed. Also eligible are full-time students whose minimum 12 credits includes course work required in their programs of study that must be taken with a pass/fail option, excluding credits that do not count toward graduation, and whose semester average is 3.5.
Part-Time Undergraduate Students
An appropriate academic standard for Dean’s List for part-time undergraduate students shall be a minimum of 12 graded semester hours satisfactorily completed within one academic year (fall and spring semesters) with a grade point average for the year of 3.5. The only exception is for students whose minimum of 12 credits includes course work (a) that is required in a program of study, taken on a pass/fail basis, and (b) that does not count toward graduation. For such students, both the academic year average and the cumulative grade point average must both be at least 3.5.
In the event of inclement weather, it may become necessary to delay the opening of the university. In such instances, students and faculty are expected to report to their classes which are scheduled to be in progress at the delayed opening time.
WCSU Weather Alert Phone Line: 837-9377
Weather Alert information is also available on the Web at www.wcsu.edu. In case of a “weather emergency,” class cancellations and delays will also be announced on the following radio and television stations:
WLAD 800 Danbury, CT
WDAQ FM 98.3 Danbury, CT
WXCI FM 91.7 W.C.S.U.
WEZN FM 99.9 Bridgeport, CT
WEBE FM 108 Bridgeport, CT
WICC 600 Bridgeport, CT
WINE 940 Brookfield, CT
WRKI FM 95.1 Brookfield, CT
WPLR FM 99.1 Hamden, CT
WTIC AM 1080 Hartford, CT
WTIC FM 96.5 Hartford, CT
WVIT TV 30 Hartford, CT
WFSB TV 3 Hartford, CT
WKCI FM 101 New Haven, CT
WELI 960 New Haven, CT
WTNH TV 8 New Haven, CT
WEFX FM 95.9 Norwalk, CT
WKHL FM 96.7 Norwalk, CT
WNLK 1350 Norwalk, CT
WSTC 1400 Norwalk, CT
WATR 1320 Waterbury, CT
WFAS 1230 Hartsdale, NY
WRRV FM 92.7 Middletown, NY
WCBS AM 880 New York, NY
WHUD FM 100.7 Peekskill, NY
WLNA 1420 Peekskill, NY
WPDH FM 101.5 Poughkeepsie, NY
WEOK 1390 Poughkeepsie, NY
Oldies 97.7 Poughkeepsie, NY
Western Connecticut State University accords all the rights under the law to students. No one outside the university shall have access to, nor will the university disclose any information from, a student’s educational records without his/her written consent except to personnel within the university, to officials of other institutions in which the student seeks to enroll, to persons or organizations providing students financial aid, to accreditation groups, to persons in compliance with a judicial order, to persons in an emergency in order to protect the health or safety of students or other persons, or to parents of a student who is officially documented as their dependent for income tax purposes. All these exceptions are permitted under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. The university will maintain a record of all requests for and/or disclosure of information from a student’s educational records. The record will indicate the name of the party making the request, any additional party to whom it may be redisclosed, and the legitimate interest the party had in requesting or obtaining the information. The record may be reviewed by the eligible student.
Within the Western Connecticut State University community, only those university officials acting in the student’s educational interest are allowed access to education records. A university official is any person employed by the university in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support-staff position; any person appointed to the Board of Trustees for the Connecticut State University; or any person employed by or under contract to the university or the State of Connecticut to perform a special task, such as an attorney or auditor. A university official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is: performing a task that is specified in his/her position description or by contract agreement; performing a task related to a student’s education; performing a task relating to the discipline of a student; or providing a service or benefit relating to the student or student’s family, such as health care, counseling, job placement or financial aid.
At its discretion, the university may provide directory information in accordance with the provisions of the act to include: student name, address, telephone number, photo ID, date of birth, major field of study, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, and weight and height of members of athletic teams. Students may withhold directory information by notifying the Office of the Dean of Students, in writing. Such a request would be honored until such time students requested in writing that their directory information again be made public.
The law provides students the right to inspect and review information contained in their education records, to challenge the contents of their education records and to have a hearing on the matter. The vice president of student affairs or his designee at Western Connecticut State University has been designated to coordinate the inspection and review procedures for student educational records, which include admissions, personal, academic, financial, disciplinary, cooperative education, and placement records. Students wishing to review their educational records must make requests to the registrar listing the item of interest. Only records covered by the act will be made available within 45 days of the request. Students may have copies made of their records with certain exceptions (e.g. a copy of their academic record for which a financial “hold” exists, or a transcript of an original or source document which exists elsewhere). Educational records do not include: records of instructional, administrative and educational personnel, which are the sole possession of the maker and are not accessible or revealed to any individual except a temporary substitute; records of a law enforcement unit; student health records; employment records or alumni records. Health records, however, may be reviewed by the physician of the student’s choosing.
Students may not inspect and/or review the following as outlined by the act: financial information submitted by their parents: confidential letters and recommendations associated with admissions, employment or job placement, or honors to which they have waived their rights of inspection and review, or education records containing information about more than one student. In this last case, the university will permit access only to that part of the record which pertains to the inquiring student. The university is not required to permit students to inspect and/or review confidential letters and recommendations placed in their files prior to January 1, 1975, provided these letters were collected under established policies of confidentiality and were used only for the purpose for which they were collected.
Students who believe that their educational records contain information that is inaccurate or misleading or is otherwise in violation of their privacy or other rights may discuss their problems informally with the Office of Student Affairs.
In the event a student’s request, either to have access to a record or to amend information in a file has been denied, the student may ask for a formal hearing. The student must submit a written request for the hearing to the vice president for academic affairs. The hearing panel will consist of the vice president for academic affairs, the graduate dean and the academic dean of his/her school. Decisions of the hearing panel are final. Any alteration to the student’s record will be in accordance with the decision of the hearing panel and will become a permanent part of that record. The student has a right to add a statement to a challenged record if the panel’s decision is not to amend the record in accordance with the student’s request.
Students who believe that the adjudications of their challenges were unfair or not in keeping with the provisions of the act may request, in writing, assistance from the vice president of Student Affairs to aid them in filing complaints with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), U.S. Department of Education, Washington, D.C. 20202.
Students are required to observe the attendance regulations announced by the instructors for those courses in which they are enrolled.
Minimum Student Preparation Hours
The university expects all students to devote a minimum of two hours of preparation for each hour of class time.
The following grades and associated numerical values are used on academic records:
P Pass on Pass/Fail Option
FP Fail on Pass/Fail Option
W Officially Withdrawn
WF Withdrawn Failing. This grade has academic penalty equivalent to an “F” and is received if you stop attending class without officially with drawing, or if you withdraw after the official withdrawal date without permission of your instructor.
WFP Withdrawn failing from a Pass/Fail course
RM or RP These grades are given in specified courses to permit you to improve competence without academic penalty. Required courses in which a student receives an RP must be repeated. The RM grade requires a student to work with the instructor to correct specified weaknesses until a level of competence of “C” or better has been attained.
Courses in which the RM or RP grade is allowed to be given:
CHE 100 MAT 098/100
COM 160/161/162 PHY 110/111
ENG 098 FR 161/162/163/164
ENG 099 GER 161/162/163/164
ENG 101 IT 161/162/163/164
Quality Points (Grade Point Average)
In order to determine a student’s grade-point average (GPA), letter grades are assigned numerical values. The numerical weight given each grade is then multiplied by the number of credits (semester hours) assigned to each course. For example, a grade of “B” in a three-credit course would merit (3.0 x 3) = 9.0 quality points.
Your GPA is determined by dividing the total number of quality points by the number of credits attempted. Grades of INC, P, FP, WFP, W, AUD, RP, and RM carry no quality points, and the credits for courses with those grades are not considered in the total credits attempted; therefore, they have no effect on your GPA.
Courses that you transfer to WestConn from another institution are not included in the determination of your GPA.
You can access your grades by logging onto WestConnduit.wcsu.edu. If necessary, grades will be mailed if a request is made at the Registrar's office.
If a student wishes to question the grade received in a course, it is proper to raise that issue with the instructor. If the instructor believes that the final grade should be changed, he/she will recommend the change to the dean. In the instructor's absence, the department chairperson may act in his/her place. (A student may appeal a final grade. Information about this process may be found in the Student Handbook and the Undergraduate Catalog.)
To be eligible for graduation honors, you must earn a minimum of 30 semester hours of quality point-bearing credit at WestConn. No pass/fail credits or transfer credits are included in this minimum. Graduation honors standards are based on your cumulative grade point average and are awarded as follows:
Summa Cum Laude 3.9 to 4.0
Magna Cum Laude 3.7 to 3.89
Cum Laude 3.5 to 3.69
January graduates and May candidates for Graduation Honors, who will be recognized at the May Commencement ceremonies, are identified at the conclusion of the January Intersession semester preceding graduation. Students who have earned a minimum of
30 credits toward their graduation requirements in residence at Western Connecticut State University with a cumulative earned GPA of at least 3.50 are considered to be Graduation Honors candidates eligible for recognition at the May Commencement. Candidacy for May Graduation Honors does not guarantee the award of Graduation Honors upon completion of degree requirements.
Graduation honors, which appear on the transcript and on an honor's certificate, will be awarded only to students who complete their graduation requirements with a minimum of 30 credits in residence at Western Connecticut State University and have a cumulative earned grade-point average of at least 3.50. The residency requirement for honors may not be waived. Students with questions regarding academic honors should consult the Academic Dean of their major.
You may take free elective courses on a pass/fail basis with the approval of the school dean of your major. The purpose of this option is to encourage students to take courses in areas they would like to investigate in addition to those in which they are majoring or concentrating. A maximum of four free elective courses may be converted to pass/fail grading, provided that:
- You obtain approval within the first four weeks for full semester courses or the first two weeks for courses scheduled less than a full semester; and
- You change no more than one course per semester to pass/fail credit; and
- You do not use the course to satisfy a general education requirement, a requirement for a major or minor program, or the foreign language requirement.
Credits taken on a pass/fail basis do not generate quality points and are not included with credits attempted on the standard basis in computing the academic average. Successfully completed pass/fail credits are included in the credits necessary for graduation unless the description of the particular course indicates otherwise. Information regarding changes of grade or pass/fail options can be obtained from the Registrar’s Office.
(For students who have not fulfilled their proficiency course requirement within the 24 credits permitted by the Board of Trustees resolution of July, 2003)
- Students who enter the university beginning fall semester 2004 are subject to the Resolution concerning proficiency courses (CSU Board of Trustees, July 16, 2003).
- Students will be notified of this requirement when they enter the university, and they will receive regular reminders from their school dean until completion.
- A student who needs to demonstrate proficiency but who fails to complete the requirement within his/her first 24 credits at the university will be notified by the school dean that no further registration for credit course will be permitted at any CSU institution until the required proficiency courses or their equivalents have been successfully completed elsewhere.
- A student may appeal the suspension by responding in writing to the dean within two weeks of notification. This deadline may be extended only if the student is unable to respond because of hospitalization or other reason beyond his/her control.
- To support the appeal, only reasons beyond the students’ control can be considered, such as medical emergency, leave of absence, or family leave.
- All reasons must be supported by evidence.
- For further support, the student’s record must show evidence of academic progress.
- The dean will respond to the student in writing within two weeks of receiving the appeal.
- An extension of time to meet the requirement may be granted at the dean’s discretion after review of the evidence
- Extensions may not exceed one additional academic semester.
Students are permitted to repeat most courses at Western; however, credit is granted only once toward graduation unless specifically noted in the course description (e.g., ENG 376). For up to the first seventeen (17) academic credits of repeated courses, the highest grade attained by the student will be substituted for the lower grade(s) for the purpose of calculating the student's grade point average (GPA). Although the lower grade received in the repeated course will not be calculated in the GPA, it will remain visible on the student's official university transcript. If a student repeats courses beyond the seventeen (17) academic credit limitation, the multiple grades attained for the repeated course(s) shall be used in the calculation of the student's GPA. This policy applies to undergraduate courses completed at WCSU only, and may be applied only to courses taken after Fall 2008.
Repeating any course taken in a previous semester may affect certain federal and state benefits, various financial aid programs, loans, scholarships and social security benefits, in addition to athletic eligibility and veteran's benefits. Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements must be met for continued financial aid eligibility. See the Office of Financial Aid and Student Employment section of the catalog for the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.
Any course designated as X98 (Faculty-Developed Study) or X99 (Student Independent Study) is excluded from this policy. Special Topics classes are also excluded. Students are encouraged to consult with their academic adviser before repeating a course. Education majors and post-baccalaureate certification students should refer to the Education Department for information regarding the repeating of courses as this policy may affect eligibility for certification.
The Repeat Policy Request Form must be in to the
Registrar's Office by the end of the sixth week of
If you have earned one bachelor’s degree from Western Connecticut State University, you may be eligible to pursue a second bachelor’s degree at Western. The second major must be different from the first, although the degree may be the same, e.g., B.A. in psychology and B.A. in English.
After you have earned the first degree, you must apply to the Admissions Office for acceptance as a candidate for the new degree program (acceptance will depend on program requirements).
You must complete a minimum of 30 semester-hour credits (classroom credits, excluding CLEP and other alternates) including all requirements specific to the new degree, such as a foreign language requirement.
A student is eligible for the bachelor’s or associate’s degree upon successful completion of general education, the major, and total credit requirements for that degree. A cumulative grade-point average of 2.0 or higher for all credits attempted at WestConn is required for graduation, as well as a grade-point average of 2.0 or higher in all courses for the major. Certain programs have a higher minimum standard. In addition, at least 30 credits and at least half of the major requirements must be completed at WestConn. Note that two components constitute a major in the Ancell School: the business core and the specialization, e.g., accounting, finance, etc. B.B.A. candidates must complete at least half of the specialization at WestConn. Some programs require meeting additional and/or higher academic standards.
If you are enrolled at WestConn, but wish to take courses at other accredited institutions, you may not receive credit unless you obtain prior approval from the dean of your school. The form for such approval is available in the dean’s office. A minimum grade of “C-” is required for transfer of credit.
A policy agreed to by both the Connecticut State University and Connecticut Community College systems requires that mathematics courses taken at a community college, on or after the Fall 2001, must have had a prerequisite of intermediate algebra in order to be transferred to WestConn and meet general education requirements.
Students may withdraw from a full-semester course, without penalty, until the end of the tenth week of the semester. For eight week courses, it is the last day of the fifth week; for five week courses, it is the last day of the third week; for three week courses, it is the last day of the second week. Contact the Registrar’s Office for specific dates for each semester. Withdrawals are recorded on your transcript with a grade of “W”. There is no penalty attached to this grade.
Part-time students pay tuition for each credit for which they are registered. If they drop/withdraw from a course within the refund deadlines, they will receive the appropriate refund as indicated on the academic calendar inside the front cover of the registration booklet. Full-time students are eligible for a refund only if they withdraw from school. The refund deadlines for fulltime students can also be found in the academic calendar.
It is possible to withdraw without penalty from a course through the withdrawal deadline by coming to the Registrar’s Office and completing the necessary procedure. Withdrawal “without penalty” refers only to academic penalty (i.e., failure). Withdrawal may affect the attainment of satisfactory progress as defined by financial aid, housing, athletic eligibility, and other policies.
If you wish to withdraw without penalty from a course after the deadline, you will have to have the written approval of your instructor. Otherwise, you will receive a WF, a failing grade. Check with your instructors to make certain that you understand their policies with regard to withdrawal after the deadline.
NOTE: You must officially withdraw from a course to avoid receiving a failing grade. If you just stop attending the class without following the necessary procedure, you will be given a failing grade.
Students who may find it necessary to withdraw from the university should follow the formal withdrawal procedure by completing a withdrawal form obtained from the Registrar's office. Students who plan to withdraw for a period of no more than one year (i.e., two academic semesters) may apply for a leave of absence. This special type of student withdrawal is requested by the same procedure as above.