Academic Policies and Procedures

image_pdfimage_print

Registration | Transfer CreditWithdrawal and Leave of Absence | GraduationGeneral Information

Registration

Credit Hours

One credit hour is given for one 50-minute class per week for 14 weeks or the equivalent. Some graduate programs, such as the MBA program, have developed 7-week modular programs, but these programs still adhere to the hour requirements.

Registration Sessions

Registrations are accepted via the college’s web system, Self-Service, or in person. Students are notified of their dates to register in advance by email. Currently, enrolled students are given priority registration rights.

  • Registration for Summer Terms occurs in February.
  • Registration for Fall Semester occurs in April.
  • Registration for Spring Semester occurs in October.

Academic Load

Status Hours
Full-time 7 or more
Part-time 46
Less than part-time 3 or fewer

Prerequisite Requirements

Certain graduate courses at the college have course and skill prerequisites. The prerequisites for a course are listed in the academic catalog, class schedule, and course syllabus. Students are permitted to pre-register for a course that has prerequisites provided the prerequisite coursework is in progress at the time of the registration session. Students are responsible for making sure they have met prerequisites and grade standards prior to the beginning of each semester. The college reserves the right to withdraw a student from any course for which prerequisites and grade standards have not been met.

Late Registration

Students may register until the end of the first full week of classes, or for classes that start later in the semester, up until the day before the second day of classes. Specific dates are listed in the Academic Calendar. Beginning with the first day of classes, students must obtain instructor permission to enroll in any classes by obtaining the instructor’s signature on an Add Card.

Confirmations of Class Schedules

Students can check their schedule and print a confirmation at any time using Self-Service, or they may come to the Registrar’s Office during office hours to receive a copy. Students are expected to check these confirmations carefully and report discrepancies to the Registrar’s Office. The computerized confirmation reflects the courses for which the student is actually registered.

Wait Lists

Once a class has closed, a student has the option of being put on a waitlist for that class. As space becomes available, students are added in the class automatically by the Registrar’s Office during the pre-registration period. Once classes begin, a student must turn in an Add Card with the instructor’s signature in order to be officially enrolled in the class. Although many students get into their classes from the wait list, students are encouraged to choose alternate courses whenever possible.

Cross-listed and Meets-with Courses

Courses may be cross-listed with multiple department prefixes.  When a course is cross-listed in two or more ways, it remains a single course. Students work from the same syllabus toward the same learning outcomes, and there is no differentiation of instruction.  Course numbers, titles, descriptions, and prerequisites should normally match.  Regardless of which course prefix a student registers under, the course counts toward the same requirement in their degree audit.  Lower-division courses may not be cross-listed with upper-division courses, and upper-division courses make not be cross-listed with graduate courses.

Two different courses, including courses at different levels, may meet with each other. They should normally have different syllabuses and learning outcomes with clearly differentiated instruction, particularly when lower-division, upper-division, or graduate courses meet together. There should be clear pedagogical and/or operational reasons for the courses to meet at the same time in the same place. A course that meets with another counts in a student’s degree audit only under its own prefix and course number.

Holds

The college may place administrative holds for students with outstanding financial obligations, overdue library books, library fines, bad checks, or other obligations to the college. Once a hold has been placed, students may be prevented from registering or obtaining diplomas or official transcripts until the obligation is met. Unofficial informational transcripts are available onSelf-Service.

Class Attendance

Students are expected to attend all sessions of each class. Specific attendance requirements are established by each instructor, and such requirements are enforced by the college. Students are responsible for making sure they have dropped courses that they do not plan to attend.

Directed Studies

A completed Application for Permission to take a Directed Studies Course form, signed by the instructor and School Dean, must be submitted to the Registrar’s Office. Course numbers for graduate program directed studies are listed in the Academic Catalog.

Auditing Courses

Students may elect to audit courses at Westminster according to the guidelines listed below. Courses that are entered on students’ permanent records as audited (AU) earn no credit and fulfill no requirements.

Regular Audit

Students may register for a regular audit (one-half of credit tuition) according to the following guidelines:

  1. Subject to space availability, students may sign up to audit a class on the first day of class.
  2. Only students accepted to Masters degree programs may audit graduate classes.

Alumni Audit

Students who graduated from Westminster and who are not currently pursuing a degree may register for an Alumni Audit ($100 per class, plus a $50 technology fee and any related course fees for Fall or Spring semesters) according to the following guidelines:

  1. Alumni must register through the Alumni Relations Office. Registrations accepted by the Alumni Office will be verified two business days prior to the first day of class and are subject to space availability.
  2. Alumni will not be added to waitlists when a course is considered full.
  3. Alumni Audit applications must be received at least two business days before the first day of the semester.
  4. Students wishing to participate in the Alumni Audit program are required to adhere to all college deadlines for withdrawal and payment of tuition and fees. Students who fail to withdraw will be charged accordingly. Alumni Audits will receive a bill from accounting.
  5. Students currently pursuing a graduate degree may not participate in the Alumni Audit program for an undergraduate course while taking classes at the graduate level.
  6. Not all classes are eligible for Alumni Audits. For example, it is not possible to take music lessons or independent art courses at the Alumni Audit rate due to the costs of hiring instructors. Please contact the Alumni Office for eligible courses.
  7. Only students with graduate-level degrees from Westminster College may choose to audit a graduate-level course.  The following programs will allow alumni to audit courses in their programs:
    • Master of Education Program (MED)
    • Master of Community Leadership (MACL)
    • Master of Public Health (MPH)
    • Master of Business Administration (MBA)
    • Master of Business Administration in Technology Commercialization (MBATC)
    • Master of Accountancy (MACC)
  8. Ceramics classes include a $250 materials fee.

Academic Advising

Academic advising and mentoring are crucial to Westminster College’s student-centered mission. It is a developmental process during which advisors (faculty, staff, and peer) work with individual students to create curricular choices designed to match the student’s life and career goals. In partnership with students, advisors will:

  • Share knowledge about the institution and the curriculum
  • Link students to college and community resources
  • Provide accessible advising
  • Demonstrate sensitivity to differences among diverse student communities.

Faculty advisors work with students to map out degree requirements and plan course sequencing to graduation. These advising sessions generally:

  • Review the requirements for the degree, any special options, and possible electives
  • Identify any deficiencies in the student’s record and ways to correct them
  • Discuss career options

Transfer Credit

Criteria for the Acceptance of Transfer Credit*

Transfer evaluations are processed in the Registrar’s Office within 48 hours of the receipt of most college transcripts. Westminster College awards transfer credit for coursework that meets the following criteria:

  • The transfer institution must be regionally accredited; some programs require professional accreditation in addition to regional accreditation.
  • Only graduate-level coursework can be applied to a graduate program.
  • Courses transferred must meet the minimum grade requirements as stipulated by each graduate program.
  • A maximum of 9 hours of graduate-level transfer credit may be applied to any graduate program subject to the approval of the graduate program director. A memo approving the transfer of individual courses towards graduate program requirements must be sent to the Registrar’s Office for processing.
  • Credit for life experience cannot be granted at the graduate level per our accrediting body.

*Note: It may not be possible to transfer credit into some graduate programs or transfer credits into a different Westminster graduate program. Consult with your individual graduate program director for questions related to previously completed course work and equivalencies. Any student wishing to transfer between graduate programs must apply to and meet all criteria for admission into that program.

All international transcripts are evaluated by external services such as Academic Credentials Evaluation Institute (ACEI) or World Education Services (WES), which determines the level of coursework taken and the semester hour and grade equivalents. Only coursework that is determined to be equivalent to graduate college-level academic work that meets the criteria noted above will be considered for transfer. Equivalencies to Westminster courses will be determined by graduate program directors.

Converting Quarter Credit Hours to Semester Credit Hours

A quarter hour is equal to two-thirds of a semester hour, so one quarter hour transfers as .67 credit hours. Students transferring from institutions using the quarter system do not lose credit, because semesters are longer than quarters.

Quarter Hours and Westminster Hour Requirements

To be accepted as meeting Westminster College requirements, courses must not only have equivalent academic content, they must also equal at least two-thirds of the Westminster required hours, e.g., a language class must be 2.68 credit hours or more.

Withdrawal and Leave of Absence

Withdrawing from Courses

For full-semester courses, students may withdraw from classes without penalty before the second full week of classes. For classes that meet in 7-week blocks, students may withdraw without penalty before the second class session. Please refer to the Student Accounts Services web page for the tuition refund schedule.

For full-semester courses, students may still withdraw from class through the eleventh week of class and receive a W. For classes that meet in 7-week blocks, students may withdraw from classes before the sixth session and receive a W, which does not affect a student’s GPA. Students who withdraw after these dates receive a grade of WF, which is calculated as an F in the GPA.

Specific withdrawal deadlines are listed in the Academic Calendar. In the case of illness or injury, family members may complete the student withdrawal from the college. In the case of duress or special need, an administrative withdrawal may be initiated by the Dean of Students.

Students who fail to withdraw from courses they have not attended are liable for all tuition and interest charged to their accounts. Grades of F are assigned at the end of the semester for any classes that students fail to drop.

Late Withdrawal for Unusual or Extenuating Circumstances

Students sometimes face unusual or extenuating circumstances that prevent them from finishing a course or semester or otherwise complying with institutional deadlines. A Review Committee meets monthly to examine petitions made by students regarding retroactive record changes (e.g. medical withdrawal) and/or full or partial charges of tuition and fees. A student’s petition, which includes a detailed letter and appropriate documentation of the unusual or extenuating circumstances, can be submitted to the Registrar’s Office (Bamberger Hall, Upper Floor or registrar@westminstercollege.edu). A form and specific instructions are available on the Registrar’s Office website.

All petitions must be submitted within six weeks after the end of the semester in question. Absent serious extenuating circumstances, requests submitted beyond six weeks after the end of the semester will not be considered. Because tuition insurance is recommended, petitions for removal of tuition charges are rarely approved even if the committee decides to approve a change to the academic record. If a petition for refund is granted, changes will be made retroactive only to the last date of attendance, and tuition charges will be adjusted according to Westminster College’s posted refund schedule found on the Student Account Services webpage. Reevaluation by the student’s physician or counselor may be required prior to re-enrollment.

Following these guidelines, the Review Committee will either approve or deny all petitions. A student who thinks there has been unfair bias or encountered a procedural error made by this committee may appeal it in writing within ten calendar days to an Appeals Committee chaired by the Vice President for Finance and Administration. The decision reached by this committee is final.

NOTE:  The Review Committee cannot change rules regarding the amount of federal financial aid that must be returned when a student does not fulfill program requirements. Students are encouraged to read “Withdrawing and Its Effect on Financial Aid” section in the academic catalog and call or visit the Financial Aid Office to determine specific implications for anticipated registration changes. In many cases, if a student withdraws from classes both the federal and institutional financial aid award may be adjusted and all unpaid tuition resulting from the cancellation will become due immediately.

Voluntary Leave of Absence

Westminster College recognizes that students occasionally find themselves in circumstances that require a voluntary leave.  A voluntary leave of absence at Westminster College is defined as an interruption of continuous enrollment for less than three regular semesters (does not include May term or summer term).  A voluntary leave of absence may be requested to engage in short-term military service, or for personal, medical*, employment, or financial reasons.  An approved voluntary leave of absence does not defer college loans and students should consult with the Financial Aid Office regarding their eligibility to maintain their current financial aid award.

*Note:  Students experiencing serious emergent illness should consult with the Dean of Students to consider a late withdrawal for extenuating circumstances rather than a leave of absence.

To be eligible for a leave of absence, students must be a currently registered, degree-seeking student.  Some academic programs may impose restrictions upon a leave of absence, so students are encouraged to consult with their academic program or department prior to submitting a request for voluntary leave.  A leave of absence is not required for Summer term.  Students under voluntary leave are not required to readmit upon return and may stay enrolled in their declared governing catalog provided they return within the three semesters.   Access to Westminster email and technology accounts remain active during a short-term leave of absence.   Students who fail to return to school after an approved leave of absence will be considered withdrawn by the institution and will be expected to reapply.

National or Religious Service

Students may engage in national (such as military service) or religious service for an extended period of time (longer than three regular semesters) but will be required to re-apply to the college upon their return.  Westminster will hold institutional scholarships, provided you do not attend another school before returning to Westminster.  In most cases, students are expected to be readmitted under current, existing catalog requirements in effect at the time of re-admission.

Applying for a Leave of Absence

  1. Discuss your desire to apply for a leave of absence with your academic or program advisor.
  2. Complete the Leave of Absence Form available on-line and in the Start Center or Registrar’s Office.
  3. Meet with representatives in the Financial Aid Office, Student Account Services, and Campus Housing (if applicable).  Students with outstanding financial balances will be required to sign promissory notes and make adequate financial arrangements prior to taking leave.
  4. Completed forms must be turned in to the Registrar’s Office to complete the leave process.

Note:  Students who are unable to apply for voluntary leave in person, may designate an individual to apply for them, provided there is a Release of Information Form (FERPA) on file for that designated individual.

Graduation

Applying for Graduation

Candidates for graduation should apply to the Registrar’s Office approximately two regular semesters prior to planned completion of graduation requirements.

Applications for December graduation are due in September, and applications for May and August graduation are due in October. Exact application deadlines are posted in the Academic Calendar.

To apply for graduation, students must obtain degree audits for all academic programs and graduate certificates. Graduation applications are available in the Registrar’s Office. Students are expected to meet with their academic advisors to review and sign all required paperwork. Paperwork that is unsigned or incomplete will not be accepted. Candidates are notified of remaining degree requirements and their status within four to eight weeks after applying for graduation.

Graduation Requirements

To be eligible for a master’s degree or graduate certificate, students must satisfy the conditions outlined in each program. The final responsibility for being informed about, and adhering to, graduation requirements rests with the individual student.

Graduating with Honors

Honors are not awarded to graduate students.

Academic Rank

Westminster College does not rank its students.

Commencement

The college-wide commencement ceremony is typically held in May. All students who complete requirements for graduation and are entitled to receive degrees are expected to be present at the commencement exercises. Students who, due to extenuating circumstances, are unable to attend must request that they be excused. Requests must be made in writing to the Registrar’s Office.

General Information

Web Services

Students can use Self-Service to search and register for classes, view and print class schedules, print unofficial transcripts, print degree audits, change their address, and pay tuition. At the end of the semester, all final grades are posted in Self-Service. Self-Service requires a login name and password, which can be obtained through the Information Services department.

CANVAS is Westminster’s online learning management system. It includes online tools such as syllabi, discussion boards, electronic reserves and more. Students and faculty are automatically loaded into their CANVAS courses at the start of a semester; however, as students add and drop, this may not be reflected in CANVAS.

The CANVAS database is not connected to the official main college database directly. Students dropped from CANVAS are not considered dropped from courses officially and are still responsible for all tuition charges.

E-mail Accounts

Each student is provided with a Microsoft Outlook e-mail account when they are accepted as a student. This campus e-mail system provides the e-mail address of all the students, staff, and faculty at Westminster. Students are required to check their campus e-mail frequently because important information is sent to students via e-mail, such as registration deadlines, campus events, and activities, or general school announcements. Instructors also use Microsoft Outlook to contact students with specific class information. For instructions on how to check student e-mail or, linking college email to an off-campus email address, please contact the Help Desk on the garden level of the Giovale Library or call the IS Support Phone at 801.832.2023.

ID Cards

Student ID cards are available in the Health, Wellness and Athletics Center. The card gives access to the fitness center and acts as a library card (giving access to all academic libraries in Utah), a meal card, an activity card, and official college identification. A semester sticker on the back of the card indicates that the card has been validated through the term indicated. Identification cards must be validated each semester. Replacement cost is $10.

Parking Stickers and Bus Passes

Please visit the campus patrol web page for information on parking passes:

Westminster offers annual bus passes, good for all UTA buses except ski and paratransit buses, for free. Visit the Health and Wellness Center (HWAC) for more details about this year’s current costs as well as how to obtain a new “swipe card” to serve as a pass. In some cases, you may be asked to show your college I.D. card to use the pass.