Academic Policies

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Academic Standing

Effective Fall, 2013, failure to earn a minimum grade-point average of 2.0 will automatically place the student on academic probation during the fall or spring semester that follows. (Note: The cumulative grade-point average earned at Appalachian is computed only on the basis of coursework taken at Appalachian; i.e., grades earned on coursework taken at other collegiate institutions or by correspondence are not computed in or allowed to affect the grade-point average at Appalachian, and therefore not used to determine academic standing.)

Academic Probation and Suspension - Updated Policy Effective Fall, 2014 for all Students

Updates to the Academic Standing Policy:

  • To remain in Good Academic Standing students must maintain a:
    • 2.0 cumulative GPA
    • 2.0 term GPA
    • 67% ratio or higher of cumulative earned credit hours to cumulative attempted credit hours
  • Students with a low term GPA or a ratio less than 67% of cumulative earned credit hours to cumulative attempted credit hours will be placed on academic probation warning.
    • Students on academic probation warning will be allowed to continue on academic probation warning as long as their cumulative GPA is above a 2.0.
  • Students with a cumulative GPA below a 2.0 will be placed on academic probation.
    • Students will continue to be limited to two semesters of academic probation before being suspended

Please see this link for more information that was emailed to campus about the changes to Academic Standing Changes.

A student whose GPA is below the required minimum is first placed on Academic Probation. Each students is allowed two regular semesters of probation. (Regular semesters are defined as fall or spring semesters.) Failure to meet minimum GPA requirements after both terms of probation have been exhausted will mean the student will be suspended from further enrollment during the fall and spring terms.
Probation status is indicated as follows:

  • Academic Probation - First Probation Term
  • Continued Probation - Second Probation Term
  • Academic Suspension - Ineligible to Return

There are options available for students who fail to meet academic standards and are placed on probation or suspension. Those include:

  1. Repeating Courses and Submitting a Repeat Form
    Repeating a course should always be considered when attempting to improve your GPA. The grade earned in the initial attempt at a course will be excluded for FOUR undergraduate courses. More information on Repeating a Course.
  2. Summer School at Appalachian
    A student who does not meet the required academic standards may enroll in summer school at Appalachian and attempt to raise the grade point average by taking new courses or repeating courses. The summer sessions do not count as semesters earned and are available for students regardless of their academic standing. Students should see an academic advisor prior to enrolling for summer classes to determine the best schedule and the grade point average needed to be off probation. Summer course work taken at other schools will not affect the GPA since only hours, not grades, transfer back to Appalachian.
  3. Two Year Forgiveness Policy
    Students who are academically ineligible to return to Appalachian because they have been suspended may do so if two years have elapsed since their last enrollment (including summer school). This policy permits the student to return, retaining credit for prior successful course work, and begin a new grade point average. Any collegiate course work taken during the period of absence from Appalachian must have a minimum overall grade point average of at least 2.0 (on a 4.0 scale).
  4. Re-Admission With Credit Hours Forgiveness Policy (One Year Forgiveness Policy)
    A student who has not attended Appalachian for a minimum of one year (including summer school) following suspension, may return to Appalachian if the following requirements are met:
  • The student must have earned a minimum of 30 semester hours of transferable credit from another collegiate institution since the student's last attendance at Appalachian. To determine admission, the grades earned at the other institution will be averaged with the grades previously earned at Appalachian. The combined average must be a 2.0 (on a 4.0 scale) in order for the student to be eligible to return.
  • Credit for the previous hours earned at Appalachian as well as credit for transferable hours from the other institution is awarded, but the student will have no entering GPA. The new GPA is based on hours earned after returning to Appalachian.

A former undergraduate student may be readmitted under a forgiveness policy ONLY ONCE during her or his academic career. At no time during the "stopout" period shall the student be dually enrolled at Appalachian and at another institution. These policies are designed for readmission to the University and do not override specific grade requirements of individual colleges and/or departments. Students returning to the University under a forgiveness policy must apply through the Office of Admissions and must complete a minimum of one year in residency (30 semester hours) beyond their date of readmission and must fulfill the catalog requirements in effect the year of their re-admission. Please note that students are not granted additional semesters of probation or repeats when admitted under a forgiveness policy; however, any previously unused repeats or probation semesters may be used.

Auditing a Course

During the Drop/Add period, a course may be changed from credit to audit with no academic penalty. To accomplish this, the student must obtain the necessary form from the Registrar's Office. Permission of the instructor is required for a student to change a course from credit to audit. Students must attend class regularly and pay tuition and fees. Auditors do not receive course credit.

Catalog (General Bulletin)

A new catalog, or General Bulletin, is issued biennially. While course offerings are fairly continuous from year to year, the faculty reserves the right to make changes in curricula, degree requirements, and academic policies. The information in any given catalog is, therefore, usually valid only for the two-year period of its issue, and is superseded by subsequent issues. Any changes in degree requirements do not, however, affect a student already enrolled in a degree program.

In those rare cases where specific required courses are no longer available, the Department chairs will make recommendations to the Dean's Office identifying suitable substitutes which do not increase overall credit requirements. All students may elect to graduate in accordance with the degree requirements as recorded in the catalog that is current at the time of their first registration or any subsequent edition (provided the student is enrolled during a period in which the catalog is in force) except that any catalog chosen must not be more than six years old.

Students electing to graduate under a new catalog must meet all requirements of the catalog under which they wish to graduate subject to the exception noted above. In order to change the catalog under which they intend to graduate, students must notify the Office of the Dean of the College.

A student entering Appalachian during a summer term is eligible to graduate under the catalog in effect during the previous Fall and Spring semesters. Once the student designates the catalog under which she/he plans to graduate, the student must meet all requirements - core, major(s), and minor(s) - as stated in that catalog.

A student who re-enters Appalachian under a Forgiveness Policy must graduate under the catalog in force at the time the student re-entered (or a later catalog, if desired).

Changes in academic policies become effective for all students on the date of implementation.

Chancellor's List

The Chancellor's list was created to provide higher recognition to those full-time students who receive a grade point average of 3.85 or higher in any semester.

An undergraduate student who carries 12 semester hours or more of coursework on which grade points are computed and who attains a grade-point average of 3.85 or better is placed on the chancellor's list of honor students for that semester.

Only those courses earning credit toward graduation will be used in determining eligibility for honors.

Dean's List

An undergraduate student who carries 12–14 semester hours of coursework on which grade points are computed and who attains a grade point average of 3.45 or better is placed on the dean's list of honor students for that semester.

An undergraduate student who carries 15 semester hours or more of coursework on which grade points are computed and who attains a grade point average of 3.25 or better is placed on the dean's list of honor students for that semester.

Only those courses earning credit toward graduation will be used in determining eligibility for honors.


At the end of each semester students are classified on the basis of earned semester hours.

Students admitted as degree-seeking and who have earned less than 30 semester hours are classified as freshmen.

Students who have earned at least 30 semester hours are classified as sophomores.

Students who have earned at least 60 semester hours are classified as juniors.

Students who have earned 90 semester hours are classified as seniors.

Coursework at Another School

Once an undergraduate student has enrolled as a degree-seeking student at Appalachian, she or he should NOT enroll as a visiting student at another collegiate institution unless prior approval has been received from Appalachian.

A student who wishes to attend another collegiate institution should contact the Office of Transfer Services (OTS) at Appalachian to:

  • secure the proper application form
  • determine whether the intended transfer courses are acceptable.

OTS will send the application to the Student Services Center. Failure to obtain prior approval may result in the coursework being deemed unacceptable for transfer to Appalachian. Students must be in good standing to take courses at other schools. Courses may not be repeated at another school for purposes of GPA grade exclusion.

Credit by Examination

Not all courses are subject to credit by examination, but many are. Students who wish to challenge a regularly listed course should consult with the appropriate departmental chair. If arrangements can be made, a fee of $50.00 is charged for each examination and a receipt from the Student Accounts Office must be shown to the departmental chair before final approval can be given.

If the examination is passed, credit (without grade) will be noted on the student's transcript. The departmental chair will notify the Registrar's Office, in writing, to enter the credit on the permanent record and notify the cashier, in writing, to reimburse the faculty member who administered the examination. If the examination is not passed, no notation is made on the transcript. In the case of freshmen who take placement examinations during the freshman orientation period, the fee is waived. Anyone seeking credit by examination must be either degree seeking or taking courses for teacher licensure. Credit by examination cannot be used to repeat a course, nor can it be used to meet the University's residency requirements for graduation.

Credit for Prior Life Experience

In exceptional cases, credit can be awarded for prior non-college-based learning if the credit sought is related to the student's degree program (i.e. general education, major or licensure requirements). Assessment of prior learning can commence only after a student has been admitted to the University and has declared a major.
The student will first meet with the designated Academic Advising representative who will help in defining the areas or disciplines in which appropriate creditable learning may have occurred. Actual assessment is conducted by a faculty member in the appropriate academic area. A $100.00 fee for each area of assessment will be charged. Payment is made to the Student Accounts Office.

Note: Anyone seeking credit for life experience must be either a candidate for an undergraduate degree at Appalachian or taking courses for teacher licensure. Credit for life experience cannot be used to repeat a course, nor can it be used to meet the University's residency requirements for graduation.

Dropping Courses (After Add/Drop Ends) New Policy Effective Fall, 2014 for All Students

Career Drops (Day 6 to End of Week 9): Outside of the published Drop/Add Period, students may drop no more than 4 courses in their entire academic career at ASU. If a student who has four previous drops attempts to drop another course, the drop will be denied and the student will remain enrolled in the course. Late Drops After Week 9: These are rarely approved, and then, only for extenuating circumstances beyond a student's control. Failing a course or changing a major is not an extenuating circumstance. The Late Drop Form is located under the "Student Forms" section of the CHS web site.

Updates to the Course Drop policy:

Career Drops:

  • You are allowed to use a total of four Career Drops during your entire academic career.
  • Career Drops do not include courses dropped during the Drop/Add Period.
  • Career drops must be completed prior to the end of the 9th week of the fall/spring semester.
  • You drop courses through your AppalNet account; no form is required.
  • You will receive a grade of 'WC' on your transcript for any course you drop after the Drop/Add Period.
  • All dropped courses will count in the attempted hours.

What if you want to drop a class after the end of the 9th week or you have already used your four Career Drops?

  • More than four drops or dropping after the end of the 9th week is not allowed. Your Appalnet will not allow these drops to be processed.
  • If you have compelling, documented extinuation circumstances, including but not limited to military deployment or hospitalization, you may complete the Request for an Exception to the Drop Policy form found on the Registrar's Office website.
  • Please see this link for more information that was emailed to campus about the changes to Academic Standing:

Course Drop Policy Changes


The GPA is determined by dividing the total number of quality points earned by the quality hours attempted. Quality points per semester hour are awarded as follows:

  • A 4.0 B 3.0 C 2.0 D1.0
  • A- 3.7 B- 2.7 C- 1.7 D- 0.7
  • B+ 3.3 C+ 2.3 D+ 1.3 F 0.0

Multiply the quality hours by the quality points to determine the points awarded for a specific course. For example, a grade of B in a 3 hour course would earn 9 quality points.

Incomplete Grades

Grades of 'I' are to be assigned only because of sickness or some other unavoidable cause, not merely for missed assignments.

The student is responsible for checking with the instructor with regard to deadlines for completion of coursework. A student who receives an Incomplete in a course has a maximum time of one semester to complete the requirements. The instructor sets the timetable for completion of the requirements, which may be less than one semester.

After one semester or the agreed upon time set by the instructor, the "I" will be changed to an "F" if the course work has not been completed. A student cannot graduate with an "I" on his record. A student should not reenroll for a course in which he has an outstanding incomplete.

Institutional Credit

Courses numbered below 1000 earn "institutional credit" only. These courses do not count for graduation but are computed in the student's GPA. The hours count toward full-time student eligibility but do not count toward hours required for graduation or for honors.

Intent Not to Return

If a student has registered and decides not to return to Appalachian for the following term, he/she should notify the Registrar's Office.

Math Placement

All students must take the Math Placement Test except for those who:

  • Earned a minimum of 520 on the SAT math test
  • Earned a minimum of 22 on the ACT math test
  • Have completed their math core requirements with transfer work

All other students must pass part I of the Math Placement Test or complete MAT 0010 prior to taking any courses in math, computer science, statistics, or any ND designator course.

If a student needs MAT 1110 or higher, he/she must take the Calculus Readiness Exam part of the math placement test.


For an undergraduate student, a full-time load is defined as 12-18 hours per semester or 6-7 hours in a five week summer term. Anything above this is considered an overload. Undergraduate students should take from 15-18 hours per semester in order to graduate in four years. An undergraduate student may be granted approval from his/her Dean's Office (or Director of Academic Advising for undeclared majors) to take an overload if the student meets the following GPA requirements:

  • 2.5 cumulative GPA required for a 1 hour overload in a standard or summer term
  • 3.0 cumulative GPA required for a 2 hour overload in a standard or summer term

To request an overload the student will log-in to their AppalNet account, click the 'Student Tab', 'Registration' link, and then 'Request Overload' link. Student must select the term in which the overload is needed and complete the form, then press 'Submit'.

For more information on this new functionality for undergraduate students, visit:

For more information on this new functionality for graduate students, visit:
In addition, undergraduates demonstrating exceptional academic performance may be given permission to take an overload of three or more hours in a standard or summer term.


Students with sophomore standing or above and in good academic standing may elect to take one course per semester (up to 6) under the pass/fail grading system. The following rules apply to the pass/fail option:

  • A passing grade does not figure into the GPA, but a failing grade does.
  • Only "free electives" may be taken pass/fail.
  • No course in the major or minor, Core Curriculum, or foreign language requirements may be taken pass/fail.
  • A student who elects the pass/fail option may remove the pass/fail option during the first nine weeks of the term.
  • If a course taken under the A-F grading system is repeated, it must be repeated under the A-F system.

PE Credit Limitation

For non-PE majors, no more than six (6) semester hours of PE activity courses may be counted towards meeting graduation requirements.


Any student who was absent during a Fall or Spring term must be formally re-admitted to the University by completing an Application for Readmission. This includes a student who may have formally withdrawn from the university during a Fall or Spring term.

The application for readmission should be completed and submitted to the Registrar's Office for processing prior to the start of the term in which the student wishes to return. For those students who had a break in their enrollment of one term or more, a Non-Continuous Enrollment Verification Form will need to accompany the application for readmission. Undergraduate degree-seeking students must be advised prior to having their application for readmission processed.

Students who have taken 15 semester hours or more of course work during their absence from Appalachian State University or who wish to return under a Forgiveness Policy should seek readmission through the Office of Admissions rather than completing an application for readmission. Details and information can be found on the Admissions website.

All holds must be removed prior to registration. For questions, please call the Registrar's Office at 828-262-2050.

Repeat Rule - New Policy for All Students Effective Fall, 2014

Updates to the Course Repeat/Grade Forgiveness policy:

  • The first four courses a student retakes will be automatically processed using grade forgiveness. In the past students needed to petition to request each "repeat" they wanted processed using grade forgiveness.
  • Students may elect to exclude one of these first four courses from this grade forgiveness policy if they submit a request by the drop/add deadline in the term in which they are retaking that course.

Please see this link for more information that was emailed to campus about the changes to Repeats and Grade Forgiveness: Repeat/Grade Forgiveness Changes

Residency Requirements

Students must complete the final 30 semester hours at Appalachian, including 18 hours in their major and 9 hours in their minor. In addition, students must make at least a 2.00 cumulative GPA and major GPA. 50 s.h. must be completed at a Senior Institution. 25% of the total hours for the degree must be taken at Appalachian (i.e., 25% of 122-128).

Second Degree

If a student has been awarded a bachelor's degree, a second separate (or subsequent) bachelor's degree can be earned by completing, at a minimum, an additional 30 semester hours in residence, and all catalog requirements stipulated for the second (or subsequent) degree. A minor is not required when pursuing a second degree. Neither credit by examination nor transfer credit can be used to satisfy the residence requirements indicated above.

Second Major

Prior to graduation, a student may pursue two majors under the same degree by completing all requirements of both majors (no minimum number of hours are required). A minor is not required when a student is seeking a second major.

After graduation, a student may pursue a second major under the same degree by completing all requirements of both majors (no minimum number of hours are required). The student would be readmitted as a "Special Student" through the Registrar's Office. Once all requirements are completed, she/he is to notify the Dean's Office under which the first major was earned. The Dean's Office will notify the Registrar's Office in writing. Items to note: Neither credit for examination nor transfer credit can be used to satisfy residency requirements.Students classified as non-degree seeking students are ineligible for financial aid A second diploma is not issued to students in this situation. Instead, a notation is made on the academic transcript that requirements for the second major have been met.

Senior Institution Hours

All baccalaureate degrees granted by Appalachian require the completion of a minimum of 50 semester hours at a senior (four-year) college or university. (Note: credit awarded for military service or "Prior Life Experience" does not count as part of the required 50 hours.)

Simultaneous Enrollment at Another Institution

Students registered at Appalachian may not be enrolled simultaneously at another institution except with permission from the CHS Student Services Center. Transfer work may be accepted from other accredited institutions. Before registering for such courses, students must complete a Visiting Course Request form. The Registrar's Office will contact the CHS Student Services Center to request approval.

Substitutions and Waivers

Students with questions regarding substitutions and waivers for courses required for their major should speak with their departmental advisor. If substitutions and/or waivers are granted, this information must be communicated in writing to the CHS Student Services Center. Requests for substitutions for Core Curriculum requirements are reviewed by Don Presnell in University College, D.D. Dougherty. Requests for substitutions for General Education requirements are reviewed by Dr. Paulette Marty, General Education, Anne Belk Hall.

In instances where waivers are granted, only the requirement is being waived and not the minimum number of hours required for degree completion.

Transfer Students

Transfer student must pay special attention to residency requirements. To graduate with an undergraduate degree from Appalachian, students must take the following: a minimum of 60 hours at a four year school, nine hours of any minor at Appalachian and the last 30 hours at Appalachian. Students with an A.A.S. degree at a NC Community College should consult with the Office of Transfer Articulation prior to enrollment to determine which courses will be accepted by the university.

Tuition Surcharge

Undergraduate students who initially enrolled at Appalachian in the Fall, 1994 and thereafter, must comply with North Carolina Session Law 321-89 (Senate Bill 27) and 769-17.10 (Senate Bill 1505). In 2009, the General Assembly (Senate Bill 202 - Section 9.10b) increased the surcharge rate from 25% to 50%, beginning Fall 2010.
This legislation requires a tuition surcharge on:

  • all credit hours in excess of one hundred and forty (140) when taken as part of students first baccalaureate degree; and
  • all credit hours in excess of one hundred and ten percent (110%) of the number required for a second or subsequent baccalaureate degree.

Included in the calculation of credit hours will be

  • all course work attempted at Appalachian (i.e., courses earned, courses failed, courses repeated, and courses dropped after the UNC system "census" date published in the academic calendar), and
  • all course work transferred to Appalachian from other collegiate institutions.

Excluded from the calculation will be credit by examination, advanced placement credit, military credit, and credit earned through an extension program or during the summer at any member institution of the University of North Carolina. (Note: Every baccalaureate degree at Appalachian requires minimum of one hundred and twenty-two credit hours; Appalachian does not offer a baccalaureate degree that requires more than one hundred and twenty-eight credit hours.)

10-Year Validation of Credit Rule

Validation of credits earned more than 10 years prior to the date of graduation may be required if and when they are submitted to fulfill baccalaureate degree requirements.


Students inquiring about VA benefits and/or credit for military service should be referred to the Veterans Affairs Coordinator in the Student Financial Aid Office.

Withdrawals - Updated Policy for all Students Effective Fall, 2014

Updates to the Term Withdrawal policy:

What's new?

  • All courses for which you were registered during the term will count in the attempted hours.

What's the same?

First nine weeks of a fall/spring semester:

  • You may officially withdraw from the University without academic penalty
  • You will receive a grade of 'W' for each course in that term; a grade of 'W' has no affect on your GPA

Week 10 of a fall/spring semester and later:

  • You will receive a grade of 'WF' or 'WU' for each course in that term; a grade of 'WF' affects your GPA in the same way a grade of 'F' does
  • You may petition for withdrawal without academic penalty for compelling medical or psychological reasons by contacting the Student Health Services or the Counseling and Psychological Services Center
  • There are few other reasons you may petition for withdrawal without academic penalty (to include military deployment or other compelling, documentable rea sons). Contact the Registrar's Office for information.

Please see link for more information that was emailed to campus about the changes to Academic Standing: