Academic Policies

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Advising

Advising

The letter of acceptance into a degree program in Business Administration, Counseling, Creative Writing, Education, English, and Public Health includes the name of the faculty adviser. Students are required to make an appointment or see their adviser upon admission to a program. At their conference, the student and adviser prepare a plan for the student’s entire program. The adviser will provide the student with a copy of the approved program; a copy will be retained in the adviser’s file. While students are welcome to consult with advisers as frequently as they wish, it is necessary to do so only in the following circumstances: when changes in the program are contemplated and when the student has completed the credits required to apply for admission to degree candidacy.. At the discretion of the adviser, changes in the program can be implemented by correspondence.

Transfer Credit

A maximum of 6 graduate credits earned at another institution may be considered for transfer at the time of admission into Arcadia University master’s degree programs in Counseling, Creative Writing, Education, English, and Public Health. Transfer credit is not accepted for the following programs; doctoral degrees in Education and Physical Therapy and master’s degrees in Business Administration, Forensic Science, International Peace and Conflict Resolution, and Medical Science (Physician Assistant). Transfer credits that are less than 10 years old at the time of degree completion may be counted as part of the degree. A grade of “B” or higher must have been earned; the student’s adviser must judge the courses to be relevant to the present program; and the institution that granted the credit must accept the course toward its own degree. Only 3-credit courses or multiples of 3 (i.e., 3 or 6) will be accepted. One-credit courses are not accepted under any circumstances. The student is responsible for supplying official descriptions of courses and any other supporting information requested by the adviser. Also, course credit previously used to fulfill graduate or undergraduate degree requirements may not be considered for transfer into any master’s degree program at Arcadia University. Submit completed transfer credit forms to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies for approval. 

Transfer of Credit from Other Institutions After Admission

After admission, matriculated students must petition to enroll in a course at another institution with the intention of transferring the credits earned to their Arcadia University program. Students must provide their adviser with a full description of the course and the reasons for enrolling in it. Once the petition form is signed by the adviser, it is sent to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies for a policy review. Approval is not usually granted for courses that are also offered at Arcadia University. Under no circumstances will more than 6 credits be accepted in transfer to an Arcadia University degree program. Forms are available on the following Web sites: www.arcadia.edu/gsforms, www.arcadia.edu/registrar, and http://my.arcadia.edu. Forms are available in the Registrar’s Office (Taylor Hall, Room 103).

 
Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Attendance

Attendance at Classes

Because instructional methods, expected class participation and the nature of the courses vary, no fixed number of absences is applicable to all situations. Each instructor is responsible for making clear to the class at the beginning of the semester his or her policies and procedures in regard to class attendance and the reasons for them. It is expected that the instructor’s policies in this regard will be consistent with the conduct and the objectives of the course, including the emphasis placed on student contributions to the class sessions.

You are responsible for work missed because of absence. In the event of illness, it is the student’s responsibility to contact appropriate faculty. With the student’s permission Student Health Services will confirm illness via telephone if contacted by faculty.

Absence from class because of University-approved events (e.g., varsity athletic events, conferences) must be approved by the faculty member teaching the class. If students wish to miss class in order to participate in an approved event, they have the following responsibilities:

  • Contact faculty at the earliest possible time to discuss anticipated class absences and to request permission to be excused from class
  • If permission is given, arrange in advance to make up or compensate for work that will be missed.

In cases of prolonged absence from classes because of illness or other emergencies, the likelihood that you will be able to make up the work satisfactorily shall be determined through consultation among the instructors involved. It is your responsibility to report extended absences to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies.

Absences Before and After Vacations

Classes meet at the regularly scheduled hours immediately before and immediately after vacation periods, and you are expected to be present. Each instructor is responsible for holding class meetings before and after vacations, as at other times, and for setting whatever penalty he or she deems necessary for unexcused absences.

Religious Holidays

Arcadia University recognizes individual student choice in observing religious holidays that occur during regularly scheduled classes. You are encouraged to make arrangements with your instructors to make up work missed as a result of a religious observance, and instructors are asked to make every reasonable effort to accommodate such requests.

Field Trips

Field trips should be scheduled whenever possible during hours when conflicts with other classes are not involved. Participation under these circumstances may be required. (Advance notice must be given if an evening field trip is required.)

However, the scheduling of certain field trips is dictated by the time the experience is available. When such trips conflict with your classes, participation is voluntary. Consult with your instructors as to the advisability of missing classes for a field trip in terms of your academic programs.

Faculty members shall not be under any pressure from other faculty members to excuse students from classes for field trips. Faculty members shall not exert pressure on any students to absent themselves from other classes.

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Code of Academic Responsibility

The life of any community depends on the integrity and personal honesty of its members. An academic community must pay special attention to the values which define the nature of the academic life. Historically, these have included the right to freedom of inquiry, a commitment to truth, and respect for the freedom of inquiry of others.

A distinguishing characteristic of an academic community is the way it combines competitive and cooperative values. On the one hand, education is a shared task and progress comes through cooperative efforts. Toward that end, Arcadia University encourages peer review—discussing ideas with peers, reading drafts of their work, and so on.

On the other hand, new ideas are the currency of the community, and it is important to acknowledge the individual ownership of ideas. It is a serious violation of the norms of the academic community to appropriate the ideas of other people without credit or permission, and it is important to learn to discriminate between exploitation and the legitimate use of the ideas of others.

The most general rule is that any use of another person’s ideas—whether the source is published or not—should be acknowledged fully and in detail. Since disciplines show some differences on how this should be done, instructors should be consulted as to the form and nature of the acknowledgments required by each field.

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Degree Status

Admission to Degree Candidacy

Upon completion of 15 semester hours of credit, students enrolled in a part-time graduate degree program must submit an application of degree candidacy. Degree Candidacy is the academic program plan for the degree and must be on file in the Office of Graduate Studies at the time of Degree Completion. Students admitted to Arcadia University with transfer credits accepted toward the degree must make this application after completing 15 semester hours of Arcadia University credit. (The application form is available online at www.arcadia.edu/gsforms and in the Registrar’s Office.) In addition to being in good academic standing, students must obtain their adviser’s signature and submit the application to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. Students in Creative Writing, Forensic Science, Genetic Counseling, Medical Science (Physician Assistant), Physical Therapy Master of Business Administration, International Peace & Conflict Resolution and the Doctor of Education programs are not required to apply for degree candidacy.

Changes in Degree Requirements

In an effort to keep Arcadia graduate programs current, changes in degree requirements may occur after students have begun their program of studies. In this case, students would be expected to fulfill the new requirements unless doing so causes undue hardship, that is, postpones graduation, requires credits beyond those required for a specified program, or prevents enrollment in a course especially needed by the student. Changes and updates are available at www.arcadia.edu/catalog.

Transfer to a New Degree Program or Concentration

A change of concentration in a Master of Education (M.Ed.) program or a Master of Arts in Education (M.A.Ed.) program does not require re-application. A Change of Status form must be submitted to the Associate Dean for approval. Forms are available at www.arcadia.edu/gsforms and in the Registrar’s Office. Any change of status must be approved by the Associate Dean. Students in the Master of Arts in Counseling, Master of Arts in Creative Writing, Master of Arts in English, Master of Arts in Humanities, Master of Science in Health Education and Master of Public Health who want to change their program of study must provide additional application materials as required for the desired program. When all required materials have been received, the file will be sent to the appropriate department for review. An application fee is not required if the student is currently enrolled. Credits earned in the original program may apply to the new program if, in the opinion of the faculty adviser, they are appropriate to the new degree. Change of Status does not apply to master’s programs in Business Administration, Forensic Science, Genetic Counseling, International Peace and Conflict Resolution, Medical Science (Physician Assistant); or to doctoral programs in Physical Therapy and Special Education.

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Enrollment Status

Continuous Enrollment

Students admitted to a degree program are expected to enroll continuously until the program is complete. For students in Counseling, Education, English, Health Education,  and Public Health programs, continuous enrollment is defined as enrollment in both semesters of the regular academic year, or one semester of the academic year and one summer session, or both regular summer sessions.

Leave of Absence

A student who is unable to register for courses because of a serious illness, personal/professional reasons, extraordinary job requirements or military service may be granted a leave of absence without penalty. The leave of absence is normally limited to one year. The student must inform the academic adviser in writing of his/her intention. A leave of absence must be approved by the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. Students with an absence of one year without an approved leave of absence or who extend leave beyond one year will be governed by new departmental/program guidelines upon their return to the program.

Re-Admission

A student may apply for re-admission if they meet any of the following criteria:

  • Stopped attending within two years
  • Withdrew from a program within two years
  • The student left the University in poor academic standing but was not dismissed

A student who was in good academic and social standing at the time of withdrawal is usually re-admitted to the University. A student who has attended another college in the interim must submit an official transcript of course work undertaken. In cases of withdrawal for reasons of health, a full report from the physician(s) who treated the student must be sent to the University Student Health Services.

Application forms for re-admission may be obtained from the Office of the Registrar and submitted to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies.  The Associate Dean forwards that request to the appropriate departmental admissions committee, which will communicate its decision to the student. In some cases, a student may be asked to submit materials updating the original application, including documentation of any additional academic work. If the withdrawal was granted contingent upon some action(s) on the part of the student, the student also will be required to demonstrate that the recommended steps have been taken.

If more than two years have elapsed, a new application must be submitted to the Office of Enrollment Management. Please refer to program listings for program-specific requirements.
 
Withdrawal from the University

A student who has withdrawn from a program for personal reasons, (that is, other than dismissal for academic or ethical reasons) may reapply within two years of that withdrawal by sending a letter requesting reinstatement to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. The Associate Dean forwards that request to the appropriate departmental admissions committee, which will communicate its decision to the student. In some cases, a student may be asked to submit materials updating the original application, including documentation of any additional academic work. If the withdrawal was granted contingent upon some action(s) on the part of the student, the student also will be required to demonstrate that the recommended steps have been taken.
 
If more than two years have elapsed, a new application must be submitted to the Office of Enrollment Management. Please refer to program listings for program-specific requirements.
 
Dismissal
 
Students are expected to abide by the regulations set forth by Arcadia University and the written policies and procedures of their respective departments. The University reserves the right to dismiss a student at any time for unsatisfactory academic performance or for conduct detrimental to the University or to the welfare of other students. Departments also reserve the right to dismiss a student if it is determined that a student’s conduct is unprofessional or is not consistent with the code of ethics of their intended profession. A student may be dismissed from a program for the following reasons:

  1. A grade below “C” in a didactic course.
  2. A grade of “U” or below “C” in a clinical education experience.
  3. A grade below “B” in an Education Practicum.
  4. Conduct detrimental to the University or to the welfare of other students.
  5. Conduct that violates the code of academic and/or professional ethics.
  6. Unsatisfactory GPA (see Academic Standing)
  7. In addition to GPA, students also must be making adequate progress toward the degree to have satisfactory academic standing. Therefore, students who have an excessive number of course withdrawals for two consecutive semesters will have their records reviewed by the Committee on Academic Standing and Petition. Excessive number of course withdrawals is defined as 50 percent or greater of the student’s course load. After review, a student may be dismissed from the University if it is determined that he or she is not making adequate progress.

A student has the right to appeal a dismissal within one calendar year of the dismissal.  Appeals should be submitted to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and are reviewed by the Graduate Academic Standing and Petitions Committee.

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Exceptions to Academic Policies

Petitions

Petitions for change of grades or any other course-related grievance will not be accepted after one calendar year from the time of the start of the course(s) in question, or after the completion of the program in which the student is matriculated, whichever date comes first.

Exemptions to Policies, Regulations, or Requirements

Students requesting exceptions to policies, regulations or requirements must write a clear and concise statement describing the requested exception, including evidence supported by a rationale. This request must be submitted to the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies (Taylor Hall, Room 105) along with an “Exception to Policy” form signed by the student and the student’s faculty adviser. 

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Grade Information

Grade Review

The Grade Appeal process applies only to the final grade of a course. If a student believes that a final grade has been incorrectly determined, the student may appeal their grade, according to the following process.

The student should try to resolve the situation with the course instructor, within ten working days of receiving the final grade.   If the dispute cannot be resolved, the student should file an appeal with the department chair or program director (if applicable), indicating in writing the grounds for the appeal; this appeal must be filed within ten working days of the course instructor’s decision.  The program director or department chair will review relevant materials from the student and instructor, make a decision, and notify the student and instructor of the decision. If the dispute remains unresolved, the student should file an appeal with the dean of the college or school, indicating in writing the grounds for the appeal; this appeal must be filed within ten working days of the program director’s or department chair’s decision. The dean will review relevant materials from the student and instructor, as well as any additional information from the program director or department chair.  The dean will then make a decision and notify the student, instructor, and department chair or program director of the decision.

Generally, the decision of the dean will be final.  However, the student may choose to appeal to the Office of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies, if and only if, s/he is able to present substantial new evidence to support a claim of academic injustice.  The student initiates the review by submitting a Request for Grade Review Form (available on the Graduate Forms Page) within ten working days of the dean’s decision.  The Associate Dean for Graduate Studies will refer the request to the Graduate Academic Standing and Appeal Committee, which is chaired by the Dean of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies, for review.  The committee will consider all relevant materials in its review. Once the committee has met and made its determination, the student will be informed of its decision. The decision of the Graduate Academic Standing and Appeal Committee is final and there are no further steps for appeal.

Grade System

A letter grade system with pluses and minuses is used. The numerical values assigned are as follows:

  Excellent Very Good Good Passing Failing
Letter A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D- F
Value 4.0 3.7 3.3 3.0 2.7 2.3 2.0 1.7 1.3 1.0 0.7 0.0
  • NR = Ongoing: a grade of NR in practica must be converted to an earned grade one year from the date of registration. After one year, the NR becomes a W and the student must register again and pay full tuition.
  • S = Satisfactory
  • U = Unsatisfactory
  • W = Withdrawal prior to seventh week of class
  • WP = Withdraw passing—after the seventh week of class
  • WF = Withdraw failing—after the seventh week of class

A cumulative grade point average of “B” (3.00) is required for admission to degree candidacy and for graduation in the following graduate programs: Business Administration, Counseling, Creative Writing, Education, English, Forensic Science, Health Education,  International Peace and Conflict Resolution, and Public Health. A cumulative grade point average of “B–” (2.70) is required for graduation in the following programs: Doctor of Physical Therapy, Genetic Counseling and Medical Science (Physician Assistant).

A grade below “C” may not be applied toward a degree. Only 6 credits of “C” will count toward a degree in the following programs: Business Administration, Counseling , Education, English, Health Education, International Peace and Conflict Resolution, and Public Health. A student must petition to repeat a course; however, the original grade remains on the transcript.

If a failing grade is received (“C–” or below), the course may be repeated one time only with the adviser’s permission.

A grade below “B–” is not permitted for graduate education courses required for PA Teacher Certification, and students must obtain permission from their adviser to retake a certification course.

A grade of “B” or above is required to meet PA Certification standards for the following courses:

  • ED 470 Graduate Student Teaching Practicum, Early Childhood PreK-4
  • ED 471 Graduate Student Teaching Practicum, Secondary
  • ED 474 Graduate Student Teaching Practicum, Art Education
  • ED 583 Fieldwork for Special Education
  • ED 583B Fieldwork
  • ED 583E Special Education K-8
  • ED 583S Special Education 7-12
  • ED 590 Fieldwork in Inclusive Education
  • ED 592 Graduate Student Teaching Practicum: PreK-4/Special Education PreK-8
  • ED 595 Literacy Seminar/Language and Literacy Project
  • ED 600 Practicum: Supervision
  • ED 639 Practicum: Principalship
  • ED 649 Practicum: The Superintendency

NOTE: These policies also apply to non-degree-seeking graduate students enrolled in PA Certification programs.

Incomplete Grades

In circumstances such as illness or personal emergency, a grade of “I” (Incomplete) may be approved by the Dean of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies if the student is unable to finish the course requirements by the end of the term but is passing the course. Students who have received an Incomplete grade must meet the conditions for its removal the semester following the original course enrollment or the date indicated on the official Incomplete card. If the Incomplete is not removed by the specified date, the default grade indicated on the Incomplete card will be recorded for the course. No more than two Incomplete grades may be received in a given semester, one of which must be removed before the student is allowed to enroll in more courses. Instructors must obtain an “Incomplete Grade Request” form from the Office of Graduate Studies and return it to the Dean of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies for approval.

Academic Standing

To continue in good academic standing, students in Business Administration, Counseling, Creative Writing, Education, English, Forensic Science, Health Education,  International Peace and Conflict Resolution, and Public Health are expected to maintain a 3.0 cumulative grade point average. If the cumulative average falls below 3.0, the student is placed on probation and notified by the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, in writing, of the conditions that must be met in order to be removed from probation and continue in the program. If the cumulative average falls below 2.7, or if a student in good standing receives a grade of “C–” to “F,” the student may be dismissed from the program.

A student must be in good academic standing with a 3.0 cumulative average in order to apply for admission to degree candidacy. If, after admission to degree candidacy, the average falls below 3.0, but no lower than 2.75, the student may be placed on probation. If the average falls below 2.75, the student may be dismissed from the program.

A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 is required for degree conferral in Business Administration, Counseling, Creative Writing, Education, English, Forensic Science, Health Education, International Peace and Conflict Resolution, Public Health, and Doctor of Education.  Please refer to individual programs for additional policies on academic standing. Students in Genetic Counseling, Medical Science (Physician Assistant), and Physical Therapy are required to have a 2.7 cumulative grade point average for degree conferral.

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Graduate Forms

All required forms are available on the following Web sites:

Forms also are available in the Registrar’s Office (Taylor Hall, Room 103).

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Graduate Registration Procedures

Auditing

During the fall and spring semesters, graduate students carrying 9 or more credit hours may audit, without fee, one additional course with the approval of their adviser and permission of the instructor.

Graduate students carrying up to 6 credit hours and non-matriculated students may audit courses with the necessary approvals and fees. Students must obtain the approval of their adviser and permission of the instructor; non-matriculated students must obtain the permission of the instructor and the chair of the department offering the course. It is understood that auditing is permitted on a non-participatory basis. No auditing is permitted during the summer sessions.

Withdrawal from Courses

To withdraw from a course, students must complete the appropriate form available in the Registrar’s Office and at www.arcadia.edu/registrar, signifying their intention to withdraw. Refund of tuition is calculated on the basis of the date on which written notification is received in the Registrar’s Office. (See the refund policy outlined below.) Withdrawal after the seventh week of classes requires written approval from the course instructor and assignment of a grade of “WP” if the student is passing and “WF” if the student is failing at the time of withdrawal. If no official notice of withdrawal is given, the student is not eligible for a refund and a grade of “F” for the course is recorded.

Drop/Add Period

The “course changes – drop/add” timeline appears in semester schedules and the Academic Calendar.

Spring and Fall Semesters: Graduate students may add or substitute courses before the second class session. They may not enroll in a class after its second session has met without the approval of the instructor or the appropriate department chair.
Summer Sessions: During the first two days of each session, students may substitute or add courses. They may not enroll in a class after its second session.
Summer Workshops: After the first day, students are not admitted to a workshop.

Course Abandonment

Course inactivity, non-attendance, or failure to make or complete payment does not constitute a course drop or withdrawal. Students remain financially responsible for a course registration unless the student notifies the Registrar's Office in writing to drop or withdraw from the course. Fees are assessed according to the current refund policy. Neglecting to drop or withdraw officially will result in a failing grade on the transcript.

Refunds

The refund policy applies only to tuition charges; fees are not refundable. During the fall and spring semesters, students who formally withdraw from one or more courses within the first five weeks of classes are entitled to a refund according to the schedule listed below. Refunds are calculated on the basis of the date on which notification was received by the Registrar’s Office.

Withdrawal within time periods and percent tuition paid by the student

1st week – 10%
2nd week – 20%
3rd week – 40%
4th week – 60%
5th week – 80%
After 5th week No Refund

For Summer Session I, a refund of 50 percent is allowed for withdrawal within the first week of class. For Summer II, III and workshops, the refund allowed is 50 percent before the third class meeting.

Students considering withdrawal after the seventh week of a semester are encouraged to contact the Student Service Center in order to obtain a detailed estimate of the financial implications of their withdrawal. This is extremely relevant when a student loan is involved.

Substitutions for Required Courses

Another graduate course may be substituted for a course required for a degree if, in the judgment of the department offering the degree, the student has sufficient knowledge of the required course content to fulfill degree requirements. Before allowing the substitution, an examination covering the course content may be given in order to determine the student’s level of competence. No course credit is earned by passing the examination.

Course Loads

During the fall and spring semesters, the normal load for full-time, non-cohort, students is 9 to 12 credit hours per semester. For students who are employed full-time, it is recommended that students enroll in no more than 6 credits per semester. The maximum course load for the summer sessions is 6 credit hours for Summer Sessions I and II, and 3 credit hours for Summer Session III. Students participating in a summer workshop may not schedule any other course concurrently.

Course Numbers

Numbers from the 500 to 900 levels designate graduate courses. Certain upper-level undergraduate courses numbered 400 are approved by the Graduate Academic Programs Committee for graduate credit. If a 400-level course not approved for graduate credit would enhance the student’s professional preparation or current or anticipated teaching assignments, the student must present a written request to have the course accepted for the master’s degree. The request must be approved by the student’s adviser and sent to the Dean of the College of Graduate Studies.

Procedures for Special Status Students

Non-matriculated students may enroll in courses as Special Status students. Six graduate credits may be taken as a non-matriculated student in an Arcadia certificate program. Up to 9 graduate credits earned as a Special Status student can be accepted toward a degree, if the courses are appropriate for the program to which the student later applies. It is wise for Special Status students who are interested in pursuing a degree program to apply promptly, before accumulating inappropriate courses. Enrollment as a Special Status student does not ensure admission to a degree program. Special Status application forms are available on MyArcadia (http://my.arcadia.edu)  and in the Registrar’s Office. A registration hold will be placed on anyone who has earned 9 graduate credits and has not been accepted into a graduate program,. Special status is not permitted in the following: doctoral programs in Education and Physical Therapy, and master’s programs in Business Administration, Forensic Science, Genetic Counseling, International Peace and Conflict Resolution and Medical Science (Physician Assistant).

Undergraduate Enrollment in Graduate Courses

Arcadia University undergraduate students who are within a few credits of meeting the requirements for the bachelor’s degree may, with the permission of the department chair, faculty adviser and Dean of the College of Graduate Studies, enroll in a limited number of graduate courses (500-level courses). Credit may be awarded either toward the bachelor’s or the master’s degree, but not both.

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users

Transcripts

Requests for transcripts (copy of permanent record) must be made in writing. Forms for this purpose are available in the Office of the Registrar. Official transcripts (bearing the seal of the University) may be issued to you, but remain official only if unopened. Official transcripts may also be sent directly to another college, employer, etc., at your request. You may request an unofficial transcript for your records or print one from Self Service. More information about transcripts.

Group content visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users