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Academic Regulations
Academic Policies Grading Policies
Attendance & Academic Honesty Registration and Withdrawals
Advising Policy & Catalog Requirements Nonclassroom and Transfer Credit

Academic Policies
The following pages present the rules that are used to maintain quality academic programs at DWU.  Direct questions about any of the regulations or academic procedures to the office of the provost or the registrar’s office. The registrar’s office follows common practice or good practice as defined by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers.

Top of pageAttendance, Academic Honesty and Examinations
Since class attendance is a crucial factor in student success, class attendance is required for all regularly scheduled courses.  The syllabus for each class will indicate attendance policies.  Because there are several ways individual courses can be structured, students should carefully read the course syllabus for the attendance policy that applies to that particular class.  In addition, federal laws related to financial aid and veterans’ benefits mandate class attendance as a condition of eligibility for funding.  These laws require that attendance be monitored and the last day of attendance be recorded.

In all instances, students are responsible for work missed because of nonattendance.  Students should report the reasons for all class absences promptly to the appropriate instructors and discuss appropriate makeup work.  When absences are known in advance, students should confer with instructors before the absence to make reasonable adjustments to course schedules and requirements – such as plans for makeup work, rescheduling exams and reconfiguring assignments.  Responsibility for confirming excused absences with instructors rests upon the student.  Whether or not students are permitted to make up work missed for unexcused or excessive absences is entirely up to the instructor.

Administrative Withdrawal
Students are expected to prepare for and attend all classes for which they are registered and to act in a manner consistent with an academic environment while attending class.  When the student exhibits disruptive or unruly behavior in class, the instructor may administratively withdraw the student from class, subject to approval of the provost.  When the instructor deems an administrative withdrawal necessary, the instructor will file an Administrative Withdrawal Form with the provost.  The provost will forward a copy of the form to the student.  Such students will have seven business days (two business days during the summer sessions) to respond to the provost regarding the written notification that their continuation in class is in jeopardy.  Failure to respond within the designated period and to correct the behavior(s) to the satisfaction of the instructor will result in an Administrative Withdrawal from the course.  If such behaviors are the rule rather than the exception, the student is subject to dismissal from the university.  Students withdrawn by this process will receive a W for the course.  Administrative withdrawals are at the discretion of the university.

Academic Integrity Policy
Dakota Wesleyan University is dedicated to the achievement of academic excellence, the building of character and to the pursuit of lifelong learning.  To be successful in realizing these goals, honesty and integrity must be a part of every learning opportunity on campus.  Academic dishonesty breaks the trust necessary for the building of community and the promotion of learning and spiritual values.  All members of the institution, including faculty, staff and students, share the responsibility to report incidents of academic dishonesty.

Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, any act of cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, abuse of resources, forgery of academic documents, dissimulation, sabotage and any act of facilitating or aiding any of the foregoing.

The following definitions are listed to clarify this policy, not to define all possible situations:

  • Cheating is using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information or study aids in any academic exercise.Examples: copying homework, copying someone else’s test, using unauthorized information such as a cheat sheet.
  • Fabrication is the falsification or invention of any information or citation in any academic exercise.Examples: making up a source, giving an incorrect citation, misquoting a source.
  • Plagiarism is the representation of the words and ideas of another as one’s own in any academic exercise.
  • Dissimulation is the disguising or altering of one’s own actions so as to deceive another about the real nature of one’s actions concerning an academic exercise.Examples: fabricating excuses for such things as missing classes, postponing tests, handing in late papers; turning in a paper for one class that was originally written for another class (when original work is requested).
  • Abuse of resources is the damaging of any resource material or inappropriate limiting of access to resource material necessary for academic work.Examples: destroying or hiding library materials; removing noncirculating material from the library; hiding or stealing another person’s textbook, notes or software; failure to return library materials when requested by the library.
  • Forgery of academic documents is the unauthorized changing or construction of any academic document.Examples: changing transcripts, changing grade books, changing grades on papers that have been returned, forging signatures.
  • Aiding and abetting academic dishonesty is knowingly facilitating any of the facts described in this policy or any other incidents of academic dishonesty not specifically described.
  • Signing other students in to class when they are not present.
  • Use of electronic devices, when not authorized, to cheat.

Instructors are encouraged to discuss this policy with their classes at the start of each term and to list the first paragraph of this policy in their syllabi, with references to the complete listing of the policy in this catalog and DWU Student Handbook.

Violations of Academic Integrity Policy
Violations of this academic integrity policy will, at the discretion of the faculty member, result on the first offense with one of the following:

  • a reprimand (written or verbal) for unintentional violations;
  • a zero for the assignment (paper, exam or project) for intentional or flagrant violations; or
  • a grade reduction or failing grade in the course for intentional or flagrant violations.

Unintentional infractions may be reported to the college dean at the discretion of the faculty member.  All infractions deemed by the faculty to be intentional must be reported in writing to the college dean and the student will be notified.  The college dean shall keep a record of reported infractions and sanctions in the office of the provost.  At the dean’s discretion this information may be released to select faculty.

Any appeal of this decision will be reviewed by an academic integrity committee consisting of the department head, college dean, student life director and provost.  Any subsequent violations will be reviewed by this committee to consider penalties in addition to those imposed by the instructor, including a failing grade for the course or possible suspension from the institution.  Any student has the right to appeal the decision of the academic integrity committee, in writing, to the provost, whose decision is final.

The academic integrity policy is adapted from and used with permission from Southwestern College.

Student performance is evaluated at regular intervals throughout the semester.  A final examination or an equivalent form of evaluation is required in each course and must be stipulated in the course syllabus.  Final examinations must be administered on the officially designated examination days on the academic calendar.  Exceptions to the final exam schedule must be approved by the college dean. 

Top of pageAdvising Policy and Catalog Requirements
Academic Adviser
Students are assigned an academic adviser upon admission to Dakota Wesleyan University.  Advisers will review academic policies; consider majors, minors, electives and extracurricular offerings; and help develop a college career plan of study.  As students progress beyond the freshman year, they will be assigned an adviser in their major area of study to aid them in the successful completion of their undergraduate degree.  All students are encouraged and expected to work closely with their academic advisers in designing their academic program. 

Although advisers are initially assigned by the director of admissions, students are free to change their adviser at any time by securing a Change of Adviser form from the registrar’s office, obtaining the signatures of both the new and the old adviser and returning the form to the registrar’s office.

Advisers are not authorized to change or officially interpret established policy of the university.  All students are solely responsible for assuring that their academic programs comply with the policies of the university.  Any exceptions from the established policy must be approved by Education Policy and Curriculum Committee or confirmed, in writing, by the provost.

Catalog Requirements
All students are responsible for understanding and following all catalog requirements.  Degree candidates with continuous enrollment must meet the requirements as outlined in the catalog for the semester of first enrollment or for any subsequent catalog under which they choose to work.  Once this decision is made, students must complete the requirements of one catalog.  The term continuous enrollment means that a student has been enrolled in regular fall and spring semesters without interruption.  Interrupted enrollment means that a student was not enrolled in at least one fall or spring semester during the student’s college career.  Candidates with interrupted enrollment of no more than four continuous years (eight continuous fall/spring semesters) may elect to meet the requirements as outlined in the catalog in effect during the first semester of his/her enrollment or for any subsequent catalog under which he/she chooses to work.  Candidates with interrupted enrollment of more than four continuous years (eight continuous fall/spring semesters) must meet the requirements as outlined in the catalog for the first semester after readmission or for any subsequent catalog under which he/she chooses to work.  Note that since the university has no obligation to offer courses or programs that have been officially dropped, it may become impossible under certain circumstances for students to complete academic programs if they interrupt their college careers.  See also “Leave of Absence.”

Assessment of Basic Skills
Every student admitted to Dakota Wesleyan University deserves equal opportunities to achieve academic success in higher education.  The goal of developmental courses is to provide students opportunities to improve basic skills in composition, reading and mathematics.  Students who are underprepared for college might not persist unless given help in these areas.  The academic advisers and the director of student support services are available to assist each student in addressing deficiencies in basic skills.  Currently, the university offers the following developmental courses to help a student achieve his/her educational goals:

ENG 101 College Reading Skills 
ENG 102 Introduction to Writing
ENG 107 College Reading and Writing
MTH 120 Intermediate Algebra

Placement Assessment in Basic Skills
Every student enrolled in associate or bachelor’s degree programs must take the placement assessments in reading, writing and mathematics unless he/she is exempted by fulfilling requirements stated in the following sections.  These assessments, given during the summer, before enrollment in fall and spring semesters and by appointment during the semester, are used for placement in appropriate courses.

Basic Mathematics Assessment
A student may satisfy the university mathematics assessment requirement by:

  • having an ACT mathematics score of 16 or above; or
  • earning a grade of C or better in Intermediate Algebra.

The university mathematics assessment will be administered to all new students at the time of admission into a degree program, except those who have an ACT mathematics score of 16 or above on file at the university.  The sole purpose of this assessment is to place the student in the mathematics course that best accommodates his/her abilities.

A math department faculty member may defer and retest a student who is near passing.

Basic Reading Assessment
A student may satisfy Dakota Wesleyan University’s reading proficiency requirements by:

  • receiving an ACT reading score of 16 or above;
  • receiving a score of 11.0 or better on the Nelson-Denny Reading Test; or
  • earning a grade of C or better in ENG 101.

A transfer student must meet the proficiency requirement by one of the above or by transferring with a 2.5 GPA on a 4.0 scale from a regionally accredited, degree-granting institution.

An English department faculty member may defer and retest a student who is near passing.  The criteria for this decision will be based on interpretation of all the following: high school GPA, ACT results, Nelson-Denny Reading Test score and personal interviews.

If the previously mentioned criteria are not met, the student must complete ENG 101 or ENG 102 by the end of the first semester of the sophomore year.

Basic Writing Assessment
Students demonstrate proficiency in written communication with a grade of C or above in ENG 111 and by passing the Basic English Proficiency (BEP) exam.  Transfer students, with a grade of C or above in a basic freshman composition course from a regionally accredited institution, or any writing course meeting the General Education writing requirement, will be exempt from the BEP exam.
A new student’s academic file will be reviewed before the student enrolls in ENG 102 or ENG 111.  An English sub-score on the ACT of 17 or SAT critical reading score of 440 or below will place a student in ENG 102.  These students will enroll in ENG 111 upon passing ENG 102 with a grade of C or above.  If a student has not taken the ACT, SAT or cannot get access to those scores, a writing placement may be given.

Basic English Proficiency Exam
Bachelor’s degree-seeking students enrolled in ENG 111 are required to pass the Basic English Proficiency (BEP) exam with a grade of C or above.  Students who do not succeed on the exam in ENG 111 may retake it during the spring semester of their sophomore year.  If they do not succeed then, they must register for ENG 307 and pass the course.  Students with success in an AP high school course must take the BEP exam (consult with adviser for details).

Graduation Application
All students must apply for graduation during the semester before the semester of expected graduation.  Students apply during the fall semester for May or August graduation and during the spring semester for December graduation.  Applications are available from the registrar’s office.  All degree candidates are expected to be present for Commencement (there are not separate summer and winter graduation ceremonies) unless they have submitted a written request to the provost for permission to graduate in absentia.  Payment of all financial obligations to the university is a condition of a student’s right to receive a diploma, certificate or other educational credential from the university, or a transcript of credits or credentials earned.  Students with outstanding bills at the time of graduation cannot receive their diplomas until payment has been made in full.Top of page

Dakota Wesleyan University is on the semester system, with two semesters, fall and spring, of approximately 16 weeks each and two summer sessions of six weeks each.

A semester hour system is used in conjunction with the best practices of contemporary higher education.  Students should be aware that courses are generally designed to require a minimum of three hours of student effort per class for each credit hour per class.  For example, a three credit-hour course generally requires a minimum of nine hours of student effort per week, one-third of which is typically classroom instruction.  A student carrying a 15 credit-hour load is expected to be engaged in coursework at least 45 hours a week (15 credits multiplied by three hours per credit).  This is a good rule of thumb for determining student course load.  See Course Load in this section for additional information.

Classification of Students
Students are classified on the following basis:

Freshman Fewer than 30 hours on record
Sophomore A minimum of 30 hours on record
Junior A minimum of 62 hours on record
Senior A minimum of 93 hours on record
Special Student not seeking a degree but enrolled for courses

Course Numbering System

100-199 Freshman courses
200-299 Sophomore courses
300-399 Junior courses
400-499 Senior courses
500-699 Graduate, graduate workshop and non-degree courses
700-799 Graduate courses

Freshman and sophomore students are generally expected to elect courses numbered 100-299; junior and senior students should generally elect courses numbered 300-499.  Some upper level courses require approval of the instructor.  See catalog descriptions for prerequisite requirements.  Students must have 42 hours of upper level hours (course numbers 300-499) to graduate with a bachelor’s degree.

All requests for official and unofficial transcripts must be in writing, as required by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), signed and submitted to the registrar’s office.  Students should allow several working days for processing of transcript requests.  Students requesting a transcript within two working days will be charged $10.  Transcript requests will not be processed if the student’s account is not paid in full at the business office, or if the student has a defaulted loan or a past due federal unsubsidized or subsidized Stafford (formerly GSL) or Federal Perkins (formerly NDSL) Loan.  An official transcript is one bearing the university’s seal and the signature of the registrar.  Official transcripts are normally mailed directly to other institutions and agencies.  An unofficial transcript does not bear the seal of the university or the authorized signature.

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA)
Dakota Wesleyan University maintains an educational record for each student who is or has been enrolled at the university. In accordance with the FERPA, as amended, students have these rights.

1. Students can inspect and review their education records within 45 days from the day the university receives a request for access.  Students should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department or other appropriate official a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect.  The university official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.  If the records are not maintained by the university official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
2. Students can request the amendment of their education records that they believe are inaccurate or misleading.  They should write the university official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading.

FERPA was not intended to provide a process to be used to question the substantive judgments that are correctly recorded.  The rights of challenge are not intended to allow students to contest, for example, a grade in a course because they felt a higher grade should have been assigned.

If DWU decides not to amend the record as requested, the student will be notified in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment.  Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

3. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent if the disclosure meets certain conditions found in $99.31 of the FERPA regulations.

DWU discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the university in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person serving on the board of trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee.  A school official also may include a volunteer or contractor outside of the university who performs an institutional service of function for which the school would otherwise use its own employees and who is under the direct control of the school with respect to the use and maintenance of personally identifiable information from educational records, such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent or a student volunteering to assist another school official in performing his or her tasks.

A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility for the university.

As of Jan. 3, 2012, the U.S. Department of Education's FERPA regulations expand the circumstances under which your education records and personally identifiable information contained in such records — including your Social Security Number, grades, or other private information — may be accessed without your consent. First, the U.S. comptroller general, the U.S. attorney general, the U.S. secretary of education, or state and local education authorities (“Federal and State Authorities”) may allow access to your records and personally identifiable information without your consent to any third party designated by a federal or state authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is “principally engaged in the provision of education,“ such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution. Second, federal and state authorities may allow access to your education records and personally identifiable information without your consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, in certain cases even when we object to or do not request such research. Federal and state authorities must obtain certain use-restriction and data security promises from the entities that they authorize to receive your personally identifiable information, but the authorities need not maintain direct control over such entities. In addition, in connection with Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, state authorities may collect, compile, permanently retain, and share without your consent personally identifiable information from your education records, and they may track your participation in education and other programs by linking such personally identifiable information to other personal information about you that they obtain from other federal or state data sources, including workforce development, unemployment insurance, child welfare, juvenile justice, military service, and migrant student records systems.

4. Students can file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Dakota Wesleyan University to comply with the requirements of FERPA.  The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Ave., SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-4605

Under the provisions of FERPA, as amended, students have the right to withhold the disclosure of directory information.  Should a student decide to inform the institution not to release this directory information, any future requests for such information from non-institutional people or organizations will be refused.

If students choose to withhold directory information, they must complete a Request to Prevent Disclosure of Directory Information form at the registrar’s office by the end of the add/drop period.  Students must complete a new form for nondisclosure each academic semester.

The institution will honor a student’s request to withhold directory information listed below, but cannot assume responsibility to contact the student for subsequent permission to release it.  Regardless of the effect upon the student, the institution assumes no liability for honoring instructions that such information be withheld.

Directory information at Dakota Wesleyan University is defined as: student name, campus box number, residence hall address, permanent address, telephone, email address, parents’ names, hometown, high school attended, dates of attendance, full-time/part-time status, honors, awards, special recognition, degree(s) received, major, classification (senior, junior, etc.), activities, photographs and sports participation (including height and weight of team members).

Directory information is a term used by FERPA to designate information that may be released without your consent.  Although the online student directory will contain name, campus box number and phone number, other information will not be published.  The student directory is only accessible from on campus.  Dakota Wesleyan is committed to ensuring that student information is only released for legitimate requests that will assist our students in their educational experience.

Any questions concerning the student’s rights and responsibilities under FERPA should be referred to the registrar’s office.

Top of pageGrading Policies
Grades and Grade Point System
The grading system at Dakota Wesleyan involves letter grades that are assigned a quality point value per hour of credit as follows:























Above Average











Below Average


Additional Grades not Computed into GPA

< <




Credit awarded in a Credit/No Credit course




Lab Pass


Instructor has not submitted a grade


No Credit awarded in a Credit/No Credit course




Indicates class was repeated and not used in computing GPA (see “Repeating a Course”).


Indicates class was repeated and used in computing GPA (see “Repeating a Course”).

Semesters for which academic amnesty has been granted will be marked with that notation above the list of classes for that particular semester.

All A, B, C, D and CR grades earn credit.  These grades may be used in the student’s degree program and toward the total hours required for a degree depending on specific policies described in this catalog.  The F grade does not earn credit but is computed into the GPA.  Grades of W and NC are not computed into the GPA and do not earn credit.

Midterm Grades
Faculty are asked to report midterm grades to the registrar’s office at the end of the eighth calendar week of the semester and are available to students on TigerNet.  Midterm grades provide an opportunity for advisers to assess the progress of students.  Should a student show unsatisfactory academic progress, below the grade of C-, the student may be required to meet with their adviser and determine a plan for academic success.

Credit/No Credit
Students may elect to take one course each semester on a Credit/No Credit basis, excluding courses only graded with CR/NC grades.  Such a request must be made to the registrar’s office within the first six calendar weeks of the semester and is nonreversible thereafter, with one exception.  The CR/NC option will be revoked for students who miss three or more consecutive weeks of class during the semester.

The minimum acceptable grade students must achieve in courses taken Credit/No Credit in order to receive Credit (CR) is a C-.  Students receiving less than a C- will receive No Credit (NC).

The grades of CR or NC are not computed into the GPA.  Students awarded the grade of CR in a course can apply the course toward graduation, subject to the policies in this catalog.  In addition, Credit/No Credit does not apply to competency requirements.  Courses taken with this grading option are not applicable toward a major or minor unless approved by the department.

Grade Point Average (GPA)
The evaluation of a student is stated in terms of a semester GPA and a cumulative GPA.  The semester GPA is obtained by dividing the number of grade points earned by the number of hours attempted in courses that carry grade points.  Grade points for each course are calculated by multiplying the number of credits for the course by the quality points for the grade (A=4.0; A-=3.7; B+=3.3; etc.).  Courses with grades of CR, NC, E and W do not affect GPA.  The student’s cumulative GPA is obtained by dividing all grade points earned throughout enrollment by the number of hours attempted in courses that carry grade points.  See also “Repeating a Course.”

The computation of a GPA is illustrated in this example:

Course Grade Earned Hours Graded Hours Points
BIO 150 A 1 1 4.0
BUS 252 C- 4 4 6.8
ENG 201 B- 3 3 8.1
MTH 128 B+ 4 4 13.3
MUS 232 CR 1 0 0.0
PHL 212 F 0 3 0.0
  13 15 32.2

The GPA is total points divided by graded hours, in this case, 32.2/15 or 2.147.

Incomplete Grades
An Incomplete is not given merely because the student has failed to complete the work within the allotted time.  A written justification by the course instructor explaining why the student is unable to complete the work and a specific description of the work to be completed must accompany the final grade sheet.  The work must be completed and turned in to the instructor by the designated date in the academic calendar.  If the student fails to complete the course by this time, the Incomplete will lapse to the final grade submitted to the registrar’s office by the instructor.  If the instructor does not specify an alternate grade, the grade will become an F.  In turn, the instructor must then submit the final grade to the registrar no later than the end of the sixth week from the time the Incomplete is given.  Students who are working on a thesis or a special project of uncertain duration should not register for credit until the term when completion seems assured.

Grade Change
A reported grade, other than Incomplete, may be changed only through faculty petition to the college dean.  Grades will not be changed except where instructor error in evaluation is apparent.  Grades are not changed on the basis of re-evaluation of the instructor’s original judgment or student request to submit additional work to raise a grade.  No grade can be changed more than 365 calendar days after it is reported to the registrar’s office.

Grade Appeal
Students have the right to appeal if they feel they have been graded unfairly.  Initially, students should direct their appeals to their course instructor.  Students wishing to appeal a grade further may do so by submitting a statement of their reasons for appeal to the dean of the college for the class no later than four calendar weeks into the subsequent semester after the grades have been released.  Requests for appeal are considered by an appeals board, which consists of the provost, the director of student life, the college dean and the department chairman associated with the course under consideration. The student will be notified in writing of the decision of the appeals board.

Repeating a Course
Students may repeat any course in an attempt to obtain a better grade and improve their cumulative grade point average.  Although both the original and repeated course will be listed on the academic transcript, only the better grade and the credit earned by that grade will be used in calculating the GPA.  It is the responsibility of students to inform the registrar when a course is being repeated.  It is advisable for student-athletes to check on the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) rules and consult with the faculty athletic representative, and for veterans to check with the Department of Veterans Affairs before registering to repeat a course.

Good Standing
Good standing refers to the academic progress of students who are not on probation or on academic suspension.  For the purposes of extracurricular activities, good standing includes students who are on academic probation.  Student-athletes also must meet eligibility requirements.  Transfer students will be credited with one semester of attendance for each 16 hours previously attempted.  The minimum cumulative GPA required for good standing is:

After one semester


After two semesters and all subsequent semesters


Academic Probation and Suspension
Students who fail to maintain the required cumulative GPA will be placed on academic probation for the following term. To remove the probation, students on probation must raise their career GPA above the required cumulative. Students who fail to raise their career GPA above the required cumulative, but achieve a term GPA of at least the required cumulative, will remain on academic probation. Students who fail to achieve at least the required cumulative GPA for the term immediately after being placed on probation will be placed on academic suspension.

Students who have been suspended for academic reasons are not eligible to apply for readmission until one semester has elapsed.  They may return on probationary status and must attain a 2.0 GPA the semester following readmission in order to remain enrolled in the university.

Dean’s List
Full-time students are eligible for the dean’s list.  The dean’s list is computed twice a year, after completion of the fall and spring semesters.  To qualify, a student must complete a minimum of 12 semester hours of graded coursework at DWU with a term GPA of 3.5 or better during the corresponding semester.

Undergraduate Academic Amnesty Policy
Under certain conditions, undergraduate students may apply to remove from current GPA calculations some work from prior enrollments.  Students may remove up to four semesters of previous academic work by applying for academic amnesty to the provost, meeting qualifications and following the required procedure.

Academic Amnesty Eligibility Requirements
The student must:

  1. not have been enrolled in any university for a minimum of five calendar years (15 consecutive terms, including fall, spring and summer) before the current enrollment;
  2. be a full-time or part-time undergraduate, degree-seeking student at Dakota Wesleyan University;
  3. have completed a minimum of 12 graded credit hours at DWU with a minimum GPA of 2.30 for those 12 credit hours;
  4. not have earned a baccalaureate degree from any university;
  5. not have been granted any prior academic amnesty at DWU; and
  6. submit a formal Academic Amnesty Petition to the provost.  The form can be obtained from the provost’s office.

Academic Amnesty Conditions

  1. Academic amnesty does not apply to individual courses.  Amnesty may be requested for all coursework in selected semesters.  However, academic amnesty will not be given for more than four semesters of coursework.
  2. Academic amnesty, if granted, shall not be rescinded.
  3. Courses for which academic amnesty is granted will: (a) remain on the student’s record; (b) be recorded on the student’s undergraduate transcript with the original grade followed by a designation indicating they are not counted toward the current degree; (c) not be included in the calculation of the student’s grade point average; (d) not count for credit; and (e) not be used to satisfy any of the graduation requirements of the current degree program.
  4. Education majors may not apply for academic amnesty.  Other majors with independent accrediting standards may also prohibit academic amnesty.
  5. Graduate and professional programs and other universities’ undergraduate programs are not bound by the academic amnesty decisions made by Dakota Wesleyan University.

Academic Amnesty Procedures

  1. To apply for academic amnesty, the student will submit a formal Academic Amnesty Petitionto the provost for verification of qualifications.  The chairman of the department and college dean in which the student’s major resides, must approve the petition.  In the event the student does notmeet the qualifications, the provost will contact the student.
  2. The provost will contact the student to schedule an interview.  The purpose of the interview is to ensure that the student is fully aware of the amnesty procedure, as well as alternatives to amnesty. Even though a student may meet the qualifications, it may be advisable for the student to remedy GPA problems via the repeating a course policy rather than via amnesty.  If the student and the provost agree to invoke the amnesty policy, both parties shall sign the petition, and the provost shall give the petition to the registrar for appropriate adjustments to the student’s record.

Top of pageRegistration and Withdrawals
Change in Registration (Add/Drop)
Students may not attend class or receive credit unless they have registered before the end of the add/drop period and have finalized their registration with the business office. Students should meet with their adviser before registration and the adviser will grant authorization for registration. Registrations will not be accepted after the official ending of the add/drop period.

Students may add or drop a course through the fifth business day of the semester in the fall or spring semesters. Permission of the college dean, the student’s adviser and the instructor are required to add or drop a class from the sixth day through the 10th day of the semester. Adds or drops are not allowed following the 10th day of the semester. The registrar's office will determine the add/drop schedule for summer terms and classes that do not follow normal semester schedules. Students may drop courses during the add/drop period with no entry on their academic transcript.

Change in Registration (Withdrawal)
After the tenth day of the semester, students who withdraw from a course are assigned a grade of W.  All withdrawals (drops after add/drop period) will be recorded on the transcript, but not calculated in the student’s GPA.  After the 13th calendar week all courses will need to be recorded as a letter grade.

Students who drop and/or withdraw from all classes during a semester are officially withdrawn from the university.  Refer to “Withdrawal from the University.”  The date of withdrawal will be noted on the student’s transcript.

Students may be dropped from classes for not meeting the stated prerequisites of the class and for never attending class.  It is the responsibility of students to verify their course schedules and contact the registrar’s office to correct any errors. 

The provost must approve any exceptions to the above policies.

Blue and White Club
In an attempt to encourage further participation in the Dakota Wesleyan community, the university has established the Blue and White Club for citizens aged 62 years or older.  Members of the DWU Blue and White Club will be allowed to audit, without tuition payment, college classes on a space available basis when a class has the required minimum enrollment.  Members will be responsible for course fees when applicable.  For additional information on this program, contact the registrar’s office.  A regular registration procedure is followed.

Auditing a Course
Students desiring to audit a course should register for the course during regular registration by obtaining instructor permission to audit and paying any applicable fees at the business office. Courses that are audited will appear on the academic transcript designated by an AU, but will receive no grade points or credit toward graduation. Students may audit courses with enrollment limits on a space available basis, with preference given to students taking the course for credit.

Course Load
The load for full-time students during a regular semester is 12 to16 semester hours.  In order to graduate in four years (eight semesters), students must enroll for a minimum of 15 hours during three semesters and 16 hours during five semesters.  Students should be aware that courses are generally designed to require a minimum of three hours of work per class for each credit hour.  For example, a three credit-hour course generally requires a minimum of nine hours of work per week, one-third of which is typically spent in the classroom setting. 

The course load for degree-seeking students during summer school is calculated on the same basis; a full-time course load is 12 hours.  Degree-seeking students may take a maximum of 12 semester hours during summer school.  Enrolling in more than four hours during one session may be considered an overload.  This includes courses that overlap more than one of the three regular summer sessions, regardless of the number of credit hours for the course. 

Students wishing to carry more than maximum hours must have a 2.5 cumulative GPA for a one-hour overload and a 3.0 cumulative GPA for a two-hour overload.  Credit received through nontraditional credits does not count toward course load.  Courses that do not carry credit do not count toward course load.  All overloads must be approved by the college dean.
Graduate students may take a full-time load of nine credit hours per semester.  They may take up to 12 credit hours with approval of their adviser and up to15 credit hours with approval of the college dean.  Total credit hours include undergraduate and graduate.

Admission to Class
Students must register for courses and finalize their registration in order to be admitted to class. Academic advisers approve each registration and some courses require written permission of the course instructor to ensure that prospective students meet specific prerequisites. Finalizing means paying for the classes or making satisfactory arrangements with the university to pay for the classes at the business office. Students may be dropped from attending class if they have not finalized by the end of the third day of class in that academic term.

Leave of Absence
Students who wish to leave Dakota Wesleyan University for a short time may apply for a leave of absence through the provost. A leave of absence differs from official withdrawal or interrupted enrollment in that the student expects to return to school and does not need to seek formal readmission. Application for a leave of absence must be made and approved by the provost no later than the end of the semester preceding the leave. A leave of absence is not granted for more than one year. Students granted such a leave should consult with the financial aid office.

Withdrawal from the University
Students wishing to withdraw from Dakota Wesleyan University must complete official withdrawal procedures through the registrar’s office.  Students who officially withdraw from the university from the third through the 13th calendar week will receive a grade of W in each course. 

Students who withdraw after the end of the 13th calendar week will automatically receive a grade of F for each course unless reasons of a compelling personal nature justify the withdraw, as determined at the discretion of the university.  Such exemptions to the rule must be approved by the course instructor, the academic adviser and the college dean.  Students who withdraw and whose academic averages are above the minimal levels are eligible to apply for readmission in any semester following the date of withdrawal. 

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Independent Study
Independent study courses are limited to students who have achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.0 and who wish to pursue a specialized topic not offered in the scheduled program of courses.  Students applying for independent study should have substantial experience in the chosen area of study and must submit a course proposal that outlines:

  1. sponsoring faculty member (instructor, adviser, department chair and college dean approval required);
  2. schedule of meetings with instructor; and
  3. proposed course of study that outlines the allocation of the required hours of study (40 hours of study for each credit hour earned).

The students must complete an application which will require the signatures of the department chair, instructor, adviser and college dean.  This application will be required for registration and is not complete until it is fully executed and received by the registrar’s office.   Students may not enroll in more than two such courses in order to meet graduation requirements.

Directed Study
Directed study is available only to students who cannot, because of extenuating circumstances, enroll in the regularly scheduled course.  Directed study courses differ from independent study courses; they are offered in the scheduled program of courses.

Requirements of directed study programs:

  1. The student must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5.
  2. The instructor will determine if the course may be taken as directed study.
  3. Directed study courses are offered in the scheduled curriculum.  Therefore, extenuating circumstances must prevent students from enrolling in the regularly scheduled course.  Directed study courses are not offered simply as a matter of student convenience or preference.  Not all courses may be taken as directed study.
  4. The syllabus should include a minimum of one meeting per week with the faculty instructor.
  5. The syllabus for the directed study course should be submitted with this application.
  6. No more than two such courses may be used to meet graduation requirements.
  7. Individual faculty members have no obligation to offer a course as a directed study.
  8. Completion of this directed study course is the responsibility of the student.

The student must complete an application which will require the signatures of the department chair, instructor, adviser and college dean.  This application will be required for registration and is not complete until it is fully executed and received by the registrar’s office. 

Online Courses
Online courses offered by DWU are considered the same as traditional classroom courses.

Credit by Examination
A student with exceptional ability may, under certain conditions, obtain credit by examination in any specific course that they have not previously taken.  However, this privilege will not be offered to a student in order to raise a grade.  Permission to enroll in credit by examination is contingent upon approval by the course instructor, academic adviser and department chair.  The student is required to pay a test administration fee to the business office.  Examinations for credit may be administered only after the student’s test administration fee has been paid to the business office.  Registration must be completed within three weeks following the examination.  A test for credit by examination may not be repeated. 

College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)
Dakota Wesleyan University participates in the CLEP.  Credit will be granted for CLEP general and subject examinations that are completed at the minimum score for awarding credit set by the American Council on Education.  CLEP tests are available upon request from the admissions office.  Students desiring to take a CLEP test must make a request for a testing session two weeks in advance.  CLEP costs are determined by the testing company and are due at the time of testing.  A list of current minimum scores and classes for which CLEP credit may be earned may be obtained from the registrar.

DWU degree-seeking students who have earned the minimum score for awarding credit may have CLEP credit posted to their transcript by having the College Board send an official score report to the registrar’s office.  There also may be a fee charged by DWU for posting the credits. 

Credit by Experience
A maximum of 18 credits for learning by experience will be allowed for a bachelor of arts degree seeking student.  A maximum of 12 credits will be allowed for an associate of arts degree seeking student.  Hours are posted to the transcript with a CR grade.  Students seeking credit for learning by experience should contact the registrar for information on how to apply for credit.  See the business office for details concerning specific costs.

Military Training and Educational Programs
Military credits are reviewed and considered for equivalent placement at DWU based on the American Council on Education (ACE) Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services. Credit is entered on the DWU transcript at no additional charge with the grade of CR (credit awarded).  This grade does not figure into the grade point average.  Evaluations will be completed after enrollment for courses at DWU in accordance with university policy.  It is the student’s responsibility to obtain and submit the proper forms to the registrar’s office.  Submissions are to be sent to Dakota Wesleyan University, Registrar’s Office, 1200 W. University Ave., Mitchell, SD 57301.

DWU is designated as an institutional member of Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC), a group of more than 400 colleges and universities providing voluntary postsecondary education to members of the military throughout the world.  As an SOC member, DWU recognizes the unique nature of the military lifestyle and has committed itself to easing the transfer of relevant course credits, providing flexible academic residency requirements, and crediting learning from appropriate military training and experiences. 

Advanced Placement (AP)
Dakota Wesleyan University accepts AP (Advanced Placement) credit.  Students are required to pass the AP exam in each specific area prior to credit being granted.  Students should consult the registrar to determine the passing test score.  Official AP test scores should be sent directly to the registrar’s office.

Transfer Credit
Dakota Wesleyan University accepts and welcomes students from two- and four-year colleges and universities accredited by a regional accrediting body approved by the U.S. Department of Education under the following conditions:

  1. A transfer student must be in good standing.
  2. A transfer student must complete a final or senior year in residence except in certain preprofessional curricula.  This means that at least 30 of the last 40 credit hours must be taken under the auspices of Dakota Wesleyan University.
  3. A plan for graduation should be devised by the faculty adviser and submitted to the registrar for approval or necessary committee action.
  4. A transfer student must complete at least five upper level courses at the university.  The total upper level credit hours required for graduation is 42.
  5. A transfer student must complete 15 hours in his/her major at the university.
  6. No more than 63 semester credit hours, or equivalent quarter or other academic units as determined by the university, will be accepted for transfer from a two-year institution.
  7. Transfer students seeking an A.A. degree may transfer 32 hours, 16 of which may apply to General Education requirements.
  8. A limit of eight activity transfer credits will be accepted.

All coursework determined to be transferable to Dakota Wesleyan University in accordance with university policy is entered on the university’s records at the same grade and point value as earned at the previous institution.  When the course value or quality point system at the institution from which the student is transferring differs from the university, equivalencies are determined at the discretion of the university.

Articulation Agreements
Dakota Wesleyan University routinely enters into articulation agreements with other institutions of higher education.  These articulation agreements provide for the completion of DWU degrees (both A.A. and B.A.) using credit earned in specified degree programs or programs of study at other institutions.  Often the DWU minor constitutes the degree or program of study completed at the partner institution.  In other instances, the agreement allows the use of courses as a part of a DWU major. 

From Mitchell Technical Institute, the most commonly used agreements cover students coming into the business administration major or into the biology major.  Other agreements enable students from MTI programs in agricultural technology, architectural design and building construction, electrical construction and maintenance, heating and cooling technology, and culinary arts to pursue a business administration major.  Students from Southeast Technical Institute most often come into the business administration or nursing major.  Additional areas are covered by other articulation agreements. Contact the registrar’s office for further information.

Vocational Technical Credits
A student who has earned an Associate of Arts, Associate of Science, or an Associate of Applied Science degree from an accredited vocational technical institution may specify his/her area of specialization as an academic minor.  Students should submit a letter of request to the provost indicating that they would like their area of specialization to be counted as their minor.  For financial aid and academic program considerations, a student wishing to transfer vocational technical credits should contact the registrar.

Concurrent Enrollment
Concurrent enrollment by a Dakota Wesleyan University student at another institution of higher learning with the intention of transferring credit back must be approved in advance by the registrar if the credit is to be counted toward a degree from DWU.  The total number of hours for which the student is enrolled must be consistent with the course load policy.

Students who are taking a minimum of six credits concurrent enrollment may qualify for federal financial aid assistance.  Please contact the director of financial aid for more information.

Exceptions to Academic Regulations
Students seeking exception to any of the academic regulations must work with their adviser to explain special circumstances that might permit a waiver.  Such petitions and a recommendation from the adviser are referred to the Education Policy and Curriculum Committee for disposition.  Disposition of requests for exception are determined at the sole discretion of the university.  Any student has the right to appeal the decision of Education Policy and Curriculum committee, in writing, to the provost, whose decision is final.

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Last updated: 9/5/12