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Academic Regulations - General Regulations

The University expects all students to fulfill faithfully and effectively their responsibilities as members of the Wesleyan community. A student may be suspended or be required to withdraw from the University or from any course at any time when, in the judgment of the class dean or the faculty, respectively, the student fails to meet this obligation satisfactorily.

Unit of Credit

One unit of Wesleyan credit requires 120 to 160 hours of academic work. This work typically consists of  40 hours of scheduled class time, which is made up of 39 hours of class meeting time,* and one scheduled final exam or the equivalent of at least one hour of additional work. In addition, 80 to 120 hours of out-of-class work are expected. A one-credit course that does not conform to a standard meeting pattern of at least 40 hours must still require 120 to 160 hours of academic work. For courses that award more or less than one unit of credit, the required hours of academic work are normally prorated to conform to the above formula.

* The established standard meeting times allow up to 10 minutes for transition to and from other classes.

Enrollment

Students must comply with the regulations for matriculation with the University as announced by the registrar. A student who does not enroll in the University by the announced deadline will be considered administratively withdrawn from the University. Students who enroll in fewer than three credits may be subjected to disenrollment.

Medical Report

Every student entering the University for the first time must submit health information as requested by the director of University Health Services.

Payment of Bills

It is the student's responsibility to see that payment deadlines are met. Failure to do so prevents the student from enrolling, participating in course preregistration, and participating in the housing selection process. Diplomas, grades, and transcripts also will be withheld until University bills have been paid.

Selection of Courses

Detailed information concerning course offerings is given in the Wesleyan University Course Catalog; WesMaps, Wesleyan's online curriculum home page; and the Course Supplement, a condensed listing of all course offerings for each semester. These publications should be consulted for information concerning time and place of class meetings, additions or changes, and cancellations.

Changes in and Withdrawal from Courses

Students may not add courses (including tutorials) to their schedules after the drop/add period. Exceptions will be made for courses that start after the beginning of the semester, provided that the required drop/add or tutorial forms are submitted to the Office of the Registrar within five class days after the start of the course.

A student who withdraws from a course, the only option after the drop/add period, will receive a notation of "W" and the course will remain on the student's transcript. The deadline for withdrawal, by choice and without penalty, from a full-semester course is one week before the end of classes. A student may withdraw from a first- and third-quarter course one week before the end of the corresponding quarter. For second- and fourth-quarter courses, the deadline for withdrawal corresponds to the withdrawal deadline for full-semester courses. To withdraw the student must submit to the Office of the Registrar by the stated deadline a withdrawal slip signed by the instructor, the faculty advisor, and the class dean.

An instructor may require a student to withdraw from a course if the student fails to meet the announced conditions of enrollment. The student will be required to submit a completed withdrawal slip to the Office of the Registrar to make the withdrawal from the course official.

Students who withdraw from the University before the stated withdrawal deadline will also be withdrawn from their courses. For a student withdrawing after the stated withdrawal deadline, the courses will remain on the transcript and they will be graded accordingly.

Auditing

Subject to any conditions set by the instructor, a registered Wesleyan student may be permitted to audit a course without charge. At the end of the semester, the instructor may add to the grade roster the name of any student who has attended with sufficient regularity to have the course listed in the academic record as audited, without credit. Permission to audit does not include permission to have tests, examinations, or papers read or graded. Wesleyan alumni and members of the community, please see section on Nondegree Undergraduate Student.

Class Attendance

A student is expected to attend class meetings regularly. Since the faculty intends that class attendance be primarily the student's responsibility, no precise limitation of absences has been prescribed for all students. It is understood, however, that absence from class is regarded as the exception, not the rule. An instructor should notify the class dean of any student who is absent from class for one week or three consecutive classes, whichever comes first. Students on strict probation must attend all classes in which they are enrolled.

Instructors are entitled to establish definite and precise rules governing attendance. Any student who is repeatedly absent without excuse from scheduled academic exercises at which attendance is mandatory may be required to withdraw from the course.

Unsatisfactory Progress Reports

It is expected that faculty will submit in a timely manner an Unsatisfactory Progress Report (UPR) to the class dean for any student who is doing unsatisfactory work. UPRs help the class deans identify students who are having academic difficulties and allow the deans to work with instructors to reach out and work with these students.  Early intervention proves to be the most effective method for helping students experiencing academic difficulties.  UPRs  should be submitted for:

  • Students who are doing unsatisfactory work (lower than C-) or experiencing difficulties that will result in unsatisfactory work;
  • Students who are experiencing  substantial difficulty with the course even though they may have a satisfactory grade of C or better;
  • Students who are on strict probation. The Deans' Office notifies instructors if such a student is in their course.

Submission or Change of Grades

Only the instructor of record can submit or change a course grade, unless the instructor is no longer employed by the University or has become unavailable, in which case the department chair, upon review of the student's work, may submit a grade. Grades can only be given for work assigned and submitted during the academic term, except in the case where a student has requested an incomplete (please see Incompletes/Completion of Work in Courses), in which case work assigned during the semester may be submitted no later than the first day of classes of the subsequent semester. A change of grade may be made on the following grounds:  

  • Administrative error;
  • Error in calculation of grade;
  • Lost work submitted during the academic term was found;
  • Submission of outstanding work from an incomplete whereby the final grade is not lower than the provisional grade.

Incompletes/Completion of Work in Courses

All the work of a course must be completed and submitted to the instructor by the last day of classes. The only exceptions to this are final examinations and, in courses without a registrar-scheduled final examination, significant assignments such as final take-home exams, semester-long projects, and term papers, which must be due no sooner than the first day, and no later than the last day, of the exam period, and preferably at the time slot reserved for the registrar-scheduled examination. A student who is unable to meet these deadlines, for the reasons listed below, may request the permission of the instructor to meet the requirement no later than the first day of classes of the subsequent semester. If the instructor grants the extension, a grade of Incomplete (IN) must be submitted to the registrar at the time grades are due. A student whose credit total is deficient or who is at risk of required resignation will be subject to an earlier deadline, two to three weeks prior to the first day of classes of the subsequent semester, by which time outstanding course requirements must be met and submitted to the instructor.

Incompletes must be accompanied by a provisional grade that will become the final grade if the outstanding work in the course is not submitted by the first day of classes of the subsequent semester or earlier deadline, as stated above.

Any incomplete grades remaining by midterm of the subsequent semester (March 15 for fall semesters and October 15 for spring semesters) will automatically be converted to the provisional grade by the Office of the Registrar.

A student may receive up to two incompletes per semester by this method. To receive incompletes in more than two courses, the student must petition his or her class dean. The petition can be granted only on grounds of illness, family crisis, or other extraordinary circumstances.

For the impact of incompletes on students' records for the purposes of academic review, students should consult their class dean.

Students on strict probation will not be allowed to receive incompletes without the prior approval of their class dean.

Repeating Courses

Except for designated courses (see WesMaps), a course for which a student received a passing grade may not be repeated for credit. If a student repeats a course in which a failing grade was received, the failing grade will remain on the transcript and will be calculated in the grade-point average even after the course is repeated. If a course may be repeated for credit, it may be taken twice at most for a letter grade (A-F). Please see Graduation Requirements for additional regulations governing repeatable courses. 

Regulations Governing the Scheduling of Classes

Classes will meet each week for three class periods of 50 minutes each, for two class periods of 80 minutes each, or for one class period that corresponds as closely as possible to the standard time periods described below.

  • Meeting patterns: Classes that meet three times weekly may meet only on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Classes that meet twice weekly may meet within regulated times on Tuesday and Thursday or Monday and Wednesday afternoons, or on any two mornings combining Monday, Wednesday, or Friday (MW, MF, or WF) from 8:30 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. Courses that meet once weekly may meet in the afternoon or evening on any day. Classes and laboratory sessions should be scheduled between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. and in the evenings after 7 p.m.

  • Morning classes: On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, classes are scheduled for three periods of 50 minutes each beginning at 8 a.m.  On Tuesday and Thursday, classes are scheduled for two 80-minute periods beginning at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.; any combination of two on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday (MW, MF, or WF) may be scheduled at 8:30 a.m. or 11 a.m. 8 a.m. classes and noon classes (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday only) are 50 minutes each.

  • Afternoon classes: On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, classes are scheduled for three periods of 50 minutes each. Monday and Wednesday or Tuesday and Thursday classes are scheduled for two periods of 80 minutes each. All afternoon classes should begin at 1:10 p.m. or 2:40 p.m.

Exceptions to these rules require approval by the Educational Policy Committee. Ordinarily, classes should not overlap more than one standard period between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday classes may be scheduled as desired by departments.

Reading Week

This period is designated for students to prepare for examinations and complete assignments due at the end of the semester. To protect the integrity of that week, the faculty have established the following regulations:

  • Final exams, comprehensive examinations covering materials from the course of the entire semester, are to be given only during the formal exam period established by the faculty.
  • Classes can be held only during the class period established by the faculty; make-up classes should be held during that established class period.
  • In courses without a registrar-scheduled final examination, significant assignments such as final take-home exams, semester-long projects, and term papers must be due no  sooner than the first day, and no later than the last day, of the exam period, and preferably at the time slot reserved for the registrar-scheduled examination.
  • Student organizations should not schedule retreats, programs, or meetings that require student attendance during Reading Week.
  • Departmental, program, and college activities that require student participation should not be held during Reading Week, with the exception of oral and written examinations covered by alternative exam calendars.
  • Sessions or information programs that require student attendance should not be held during Reading Week.

Scheduled Final Examinations

The schedule of final examinations will be issued in advance. The time of any examination may be changed by unanimous request of the class and with the approval of the instructor, but it must be set within the period designated by the faculty for examinations, and the change must be reported promptly to the registrar. The faculty has voted to comply with the following guidelines:

  • That "hour exams" be limited to 50 minutes so that students who are scheduled to leave for other classes may not be placed at a disadvantage
  • That final examinations be limited to three hours unless otherwise announced before the examination

If a student is absent from the final examination with the permission of the instructor, a grade of absent will be assigned. The provisional grade will become the final grade if the make-up examination is not completed.   Make-up exams should be scheduled no earlier than the first class day and no later than the end of the first-full week of classes of the subsequent semester.  Exceptions will be made only if the final grade is required to keep the student in good academic standing. Grades are due in the Office of the Registrar no later than the date published in the academic calendar.

If a student has three or more final examinations on one day or four in two days, the student may request a rescheduled examination from one instructor.

Student Grievance Procedure

The process for appealing a grade or contesting any aspect of a course (including the scheduling of classes and examinations) is

  • The student discusses the grade or the contested issue with the instructor of the course; if the student is not satisfied that a reasonable explanation has been provided, or if the student wants to address an issue in confidence, then
  • The student appeals to the department/program chair; if not satisfied, then
  • The student appeals to the academic dean of the department or program’s division (Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences and Interdisciplinary Programs, or Natural Science and Mathematics); if not satisfied, then
  • The student appeals to the provost.

Only the instructor of the course may change the grade; therefore, a grade appeal beyond the instructor will succeed only with the consent of the instructor.

Make-up Examinations for Suspended Students

Students who have been suspended from the privileges of the campus for a limited period are held responsible ultimately for all of the work in their courses. Giving make-up examinations to a suspended student upon the student's return is entirely at the discretion of the instructor. The instructor may waive any examinations or quizzes given to the class during the period of the suspension and may base the student's grade on the rest of the record, or the instructor may require the student to take make up examinations or submit additional work.

Leave, Withdrawal, Readmission, and Refund Policy

The following categories indicate the conditions under which a student's registration at Wesleyan may be interrupted. These designations are recorded on the student's permanent record.

Leave of Absence. An undergraduate may take an approved leave of absence for a specified period, normally not to exceed two semesters. Students who interrupt their enrollment at Wesleyan by taking a nonacademic leave for more than four consecutive semesters must apply for readmission. Leave-of-absence application forms are available in the Office of the Deans, the Office of the Registrar, or on the department websites.

For academic and nonacademic leaves, the deadline for submission of leave-of-absence applications is December 1 for the spring semester and April 1 for the fall semester. Academic and nonacademic leaves will not be granted after the drop/add period at the beginning of each semester.

Notice of intention to return to Wesleyan from academic and nonacademic leaves should be filed with the registrar by the end of the last semester for which the leave was taken. Students wishing to return for a spring semester must submit their notice of intention by December 1, and students wishing to return for a fall semester must submit their notice of intention by April 1. Students who do not return or renew their leave at the end of their leave will be considered to have withdrawn voluntarily. Application for readmission will be considered.

  • Academic leave. A student on academic leave must earn a minimum of three course credits per semester (full-time status) at another institution. Academic leave is limited to one year but may be renewed for an additional year upon request to the class dean and the faculty advisor. Students may not go on an academic leave to study abroad. Please see Transfer of Credit from Other Institutions for transfer credit criteria. Credits earned while on leave must be processed two weeks prior to the semester in which a student returns for purposes of class-year classification.

  • Nonacademic leave. Wesleyan permits students to interrupt their college careers for a semester or year of nonacademic experience. Students may receive assistance from the Office of the Deans and from the Career Resource Center in exploring opportunities for the period of the leave. Nonacademic leave is limited to one year but may be extended upon request to the faculty advisor and class dean. Students will be reclassified to the appropriate class year at the end of the semester in which they file their leave. Students who have obtained prior approval may earn academic credit while on leave and will be reclassified, if appropriate, once these credits are posted to their transcript.

  • Medical leave. A medical leave is authorized by the vice president for student affairs on the basis of a recommendation from the medical director of University Health Services (UHS) or the director of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). Students on a medical leave must leave campus and focus on the evaluation of, treatment for, and recovery from the illness or condition that necessitates the leave. The appropriate class dean will communicate the terms of the leave as well as the conditions and procedures for returning to Wesleyan. When a medical leave is authorized, students are withdrawn from the courses in which they are enrolled. In exceptional cases, some incomplete grades may be granted, depending on course content and the date of the leave. (Note that any semester in which a grade is given is counted as a Wesleyan semester for purposes of graduation.) Full policy and additional information is available here.

Withdrawal. The five forms of withdrawal fall into three main categories: voluntary, involuntary for academic reasons, and involuntary for nonacademic reasons. Withdrawal from the University does not include withdrawal from courses if it occurs after the course withdrawal deadline.

  • Voluntary

    • Withdrew. A student has voluntarily left Wesleyan.

  • Involuntary for academic reasons

    • Required resignation. A student has been asked to leave the University for academic reasons, with the privilege of applying for readmission after the recommended period of absence.
    • Separation. A student has been asked to leave the University for the second time for academic reasons and does not have the privilege of applying for readmission.
  • Involuntary for nonacademic reasons

    • Suspension. A student has been asked to leave the University for other than academic reasons for a specified period.
    • Dismissal. A student has been asked to leave the University for other than academic reasons without the privilege of applying for readmission.

Readmission. Students who have withdrawn or have been required to resign may apply to the Office of the Deans for readmission. The readmission application requires a $50 fee and other accompanying materials specified at the time of departure. Students wishing to enter the University for the fall semester must notify the Office of the Deans of their intent by May 1 and submit readmission materials by June 1; for the spring semester, notification must by made by November 1 with materials submitted by December 1. Candidates are strongly urged to meet all requirements well in advance of deadlines, since housing assignments and financial aid awards cannot be made until readmission is granted. Credits earned while away are subject to the conditions described in the section on Transfer of Credit from Other Institutions.

Refunds. The following guidelines govern refunds to student who terminate enrollment before the end of the semester.

  • Tuition and fees. If a student leaves the University prior to the end of the drop/add period, 100 percent of tuition will be refunded. If a student withdraws after the drop/add period, tuition will be refunded on a prorated basis. The Student Accounts Office maintains a schedule of the percent of tuition to be refunded that is based on the number of weeks in the semester that have passed. When a student receives financial assistance, a prorated reduction in aid will be calculated based upon the revised charges. No refunds will be given for withdrawals from the University after the ninth week of the semester.

  • Fees. The Student Activity Fee is refundable if a student is absent for an entire semester, but it is not prorated for periods of less than one semester.

  • Residential comprehensive fee. The housing portion of the fee will be prorated according to the number of days of occupancy; no housing portion refunds are granted for the final two weeks of a semester. Dining refunds will be based on the unused portion of the plan at the time of the withdrawal.