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General Policies

Due to the nature of our adult education programs, sometimes special circumstances arise that are out of the ordinary from our traditional campus. SPS has provided some special policies and procedures to accommodate these circumstances.

Below are links to pages that explain some of these procedures. If you have any questions, please contact your advisor for further explanation.

Information on Volunteer Community Service Hours

Information on the Meningitis Vaccination health requirement

Frequently Asked Questions

Miscellaneous Policies

The information on this page provides you with some of the various policies enforced by the Registrar's Office. It is not meant to be inclusive. Your best source for curricular information and/or policies is your academic advisor and the University catalog. Follow the links for detailed information about each of the areas.

Miscellaneous Policies:

Auditing a Course

Bulletin of Graduation

Correspondence Work

Credit by Examination Policy

Graduation Honors Policy

Participating in the Commencement Ceremonies

Probation and Suspension

Repeat Policy

Transfer Credit

Auditing a Course

With the permission of the instructor, UIW students and persons who have not been admitted to the University may register as an auditor provided there is space in the classroom after all registered students have been accommodated. A course must achieve its minimum size without auditors. All audit registrations are subject to the following conditions:

An auditor may attend lecture classes but does not submit papers, take examinations, or receive academic credit. Auditors are permitted to participate in class discussions only upon invitation of the instructor. Permission to audit does not constitute admission to the University. Credit is not granted for courses that are audited and grades are not recorded.
Audits will not be allowed for practice, tutorials, internships, theses, clinical courses, computer or science labs, and similar courses.
Full-time students at UIW may audit one lecture course (3 or 4 semester hours) per semester or one course during the summer without additional tuition. The deadline for changing enrollment in a course from graded to audit status is printed in each semester's "Schedule of Classes."
Non-Students who wish to audit must complete an "Application for Audit" which is available in the Registrar's Office, obtain the approval of the instructor and pay tuition and fees in the Business Office.
Auditors pay 50% of regular tuition for lecture courses; however, full tuition is charged for limited enrollment, private instruction and studio courses. All course fees are assessed, although other University or non-course related fees are not assessed unless registered for other courses.

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Bulletin of Graduation

Candidates for a bachelor's degree graduate upon completion of the degree requirements stated in the bulletin in effect at the time of their initial enrollment in that degree program at UIW, provided that they graduate within eight years from the end of the first semester of enrollment. After the expiration of that time period, degree candidates will be held to the requirements of the current bulletin. Whenever certain required courses are discontinued, substitutions may be authorized by the Dean of the school/college. Degree programs of students who change majors are governed by the degree requirements in effect at the time the change was made.

Candidates for a master's degree graduate upon completion of the requirements stated in the catalog in effect at the time of their initial admission to the UIW Graduate School. However, if the seven year time limit for the degree is not observed. the student will be required to fulfill requirements of a subsequent catalog.

Candidates for the doctorate degree graduate upon completion of the degree requirements of their program, provided that they graduate within five years from the end of the first semester of enrollment. After the expiration of that time period, degree candidates will be held to the requirements of the current bulletin.

Changes in bulletin rules and regulations, other than course and GPA requirements for a degree, become effective immediately upon approval by the proper University authorities and are not subject to the "bulletin of graduation" ruled cited above.

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Correspondence Work

A combination of no more than 30 semester hours of approved correspondence or extension work may be used to satisfy degree requirements.

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Credit by Examination

The University of the Incarnate Word awards credit based upon the concept that learning may be acquired from different sources of knowledge. For this reason, we recognize various examinations through which students may demonstrate their proficiency with the content tested. The following regulations/policies apply toward the awarding of credits based upon examination:

  1. A maximum of 30 semester credit hours may be earned through examinations.
  2. Credit granted through examinations may not be used to fulfill residency requirements for baccalaureate degrees.
  3. Credit may not be granted when the examination duplicates University credits previously earned or when the student has credit for courses at a more advanced level than that of the examination.
  4. Credit earned by examination will be posted to the student's academic record after the student enrolls for credit at UIW.
  5. If an unsatisfactory score is achieved, the examination is not reflected on the student's academic record. An examination may be attempted only twice.
  6. The type of examination, course title, credit hours awarded and a grade of P will be recorded. No other grades will be recorded.

Examinations accepted by UIW, their cut-off scores, and the equivalent courses are found on the Credit by Examination page on the Registrar's Web site.

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Graduation Honors

Undergraduate students who complete baccalaureate degree requirements and have earned a minimum of 45 semester hours at UIW (excluding credit by examination or professional certification) are eligible to graduate with honors. The GPA achieved in all college-level semester hours attempted, to include transfer work, will determine the level of honors.

For the distinction Cum Laude, the student must have a 3.5 cumulative average. To graduate Magna Cum Laude and Summa Cum Laude, the student must maintain averages of 3.7 and 3.9 respectively. Graduate students who complete their programs with a 4.0 average graduate with distinction. You may view your cumulative GPA on-line at

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Participating in the Commencement Ceremonies

To participate in graduation ceremonies, a student must have registered for and remain enrolled in all required courses necessary for graduation prior to or during the same semester in which s/he intends to graduate. Students who receive grades of F, IP, or W in required courses in the semester in which they intend to graduate will have their names remain in the graduation program and may choose to participate in the ceremony. Students who complete their degree requirements during the summer months, with conferral in August, participate in the December Commencement ceremonies.

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Probation and Suspension

A student who is allowed to enroll in UIW on a full-time basis is considered to be in "good standing." A student who is not allowed to continue his/her enrollment due to poor academic scholarship will be placed on "enforced academic withdrawal."

Full-time students who earn a semester GPA of less than 2.0 in any 12 semester hours or more will be placed on scholastic probation. A student on probation for one semester may be continued on probation for one additional semester. A cumulative GPA below 2.0 will also be considered as a basis for probationary status. If at the end of this semester, the student has not been removed from probation, upon the recommendation of the Committee for Academic Probation and Suspension, the student may be required to withdraw from UIW. The action to suspend enrollment is based upon the recommendation of the Committee for Academic Probation and Suspension and approved by the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs.

Full-time students who are placed on probation for the first time or who are placed on continued scholastic probation will have their registration limited to 12-13 semester hours and will be required to meet with an advisor. Permission to register for more than 13 hours while on scholastic probation must be obtained from the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs. In addition, students who are placed on continued scholastic probation may be curtailed from participation in extra-curricular activities.

Students who are required to withdraw from UIW may apply for readmission after one year of productive activity, preferably academic. Such readmission requires the approval of the Committee on Admission in consultation with the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs. If readmission is granted, the student will be on scholastic probation, with enrollment limited to 12-13 semester hours for full-time students.

Part-time students who fail to earn a C (2.0) in any six semester hours of of 12 semester hours attempted will be required to withdraw from UIW. Part-time students, enrolled for at least six credits and with a GPA below 2.0, may be placed on probation.

In special circumstances, a student who is placed on enforced withdrawal:

  1. May appeal the action and be allowed to register the following semester after appropriate review and approval from the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs.
  2. The Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs may mandate any specific conditions deemed appropriate.
  3. If, at any time, during that semester the student has not satisfied the conditions stipulated, s/he may be required to withdraw from the University.

Compliance with rules is expected of all students. Those who fail to meet these regulations will be required to withdraw when the general welfare demands it.

Note: Financial assistance recipients must comply with financial assistance policies on satisfactory academic progress as described in the financial aid section of the catalog.

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Repeat Policy

Courses may be repeated thereby removing the first attempt from the grade point average calculation.  Only UIW courses can replace courses recorded at UIW.  Transfer work, CLEP, or departmental examination cannot be used to repeat a course recorded at UIW.  The last grade earned will be used in the calculation of the grade point average.  Courses used to repeat recorded grades must be the exact course (i.e., same course number and title) of the original course for which the repeat is intended.  While other courses may substitute for degree course requirements, they will not remove the original recorded grade from the grade point average calculation.

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Transfer Credit Policy

Upon entering UIW for the first time, transfer students are permitted to transfer a total of 66 semester hours from community colleges or a total of 92 semester hours from senior colleges (or a combination of colleges). After matriculating at UIW as a degree-seeking student, a student must obtain prior written approval to transfer any additional credits from other institutions (on the Request to Study at Another Institution form).

A UIW student who has not reached junior classification may request that additional credits form other institutions be transferred to UIW. Degree credits may be accepted from a community college or a senior institution until the student has earned a total of 66 semester hours. A UIW student earning 66 or more college-level hours (including enrolled hours), either at UIW in combination with transfer credits, may apply to transfer a maximum of two additional courses (6-8 semester hours) from a senior level institution only. This request will be subject to review by the Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs on the recommendation of the School/College Dean. Additional work may not be transferred from a two-year college.

It is the student's responsibility to furnish the Registrar's Office with an official transcript reflecting completion of the course work. Credit submitted for transfer to UIW must be recorded on an official transcript received by the Registrar's Office from the institution where the credit was earned. The transfer of course credit will be determined by the Registrar on a course-by-course basis. Course content will be determined from the catalog description or the course syllabus issued by the transferring institution.

The following policies will be used by the Registrar in accepting transfer credits.

A. Credit from Institutions Accredited by One of the Regional Accrediting Associations

  1. A course that is normally considered part of a bachelor's degree program will be accepted in transfer. A course with a grade of less than C will not be accepted in transfer.
  2. A course that is essentially equivalent to a UIW course will be transferred as an equivalent course. Discipline Coordinators will be consulted when there is a question regarding the similarity of a transfer course to a UIW course.
  3. Developmental course work (including ESL) and/or preparatory course such as orientation will not be accepted in transfer.
  4. A course that is intended for use in a vocational, technical or occupational program normally will not be accepted as transfer credit. All exceptions must be approved by the Discipline Coordinator and the School/College Dean.
  5. Graduate level courses will not be transferred for undergraduate credit unless the Discipline Coordinator and the School College Dean have approved the courses for use in the student's undergraduate degree program.
  6. Discipline courses offered in a professional degree program such as nursing, nuclear medicine and teacher certification will not be accepted as degree credit until approved by the Discipline Coordinator and the School/College Dean.
  7. Credit by examination awarded by the sending institution will be transferred providing the student received the credit based upon a national examination (i.e., CLEP, AP) or was awarded credit for a specific course.
  8. Credit for field experience, internship, or practicum will be transferred from a senior college or university if credit is approved by the Discipline Coordinator and the School/College Dean. Since these credits are usually taken in the junior or senior year, credit for such courses will not be transferred from a two-year college.
  9. Credit reflected on an incoming transcript for life experiences or from and evaluation of a "portfolio" will not be accepted in transfer by UIW.
  10. A maximum of 30 credit hours earned by correspondence, extension or by examination may be applied toward a UIW degree.
  11. A maximum of 66 semester hours will be transferred from a two-year college. If more than 66 semester hours has been completed at the two-year college, the Registrar will select the first 66 hours applicable to the student's selected major and apply these to the student's degree plan.
  12. After matriculating at UIW, a student must obtain advance permission to enroll at any other college or university with the intent of transferring course credits to UIW for application toward degree requirements.
  13. All work completed at a two-year college will carry lower-division credit. In exceptional circumstances a lower-level course may fulfill the requirement of an advanced-level course; however, courses completed at a two-year college will not satisfy the advanced hours required for a degree.
  14. Course work taken at St. Mary's University and Our Lady of the Lake University while enrolled at UIW will be treated as resident credit, however, work taken prior to matriculating at UIW will be treated as transfer work. Once matriculated at UIW, students who wish to enroll at St. Mary's University or Our Lady of the Lake University must complete an "Inter-Institutional Agreement" prior to enrolling at the other institution.
  15. In any case where a decision cannot be made using the above criteria, the Registrar will determine the transfer of credit based upon UIW policies and prior experience of that office.

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B. Credit from Non-accredited Schools

Students transferring to UIW from an institution of higher education that is not accredited by one of the regional accrediting associations (Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, New England Association of Schools and Colleges, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, or Western Association of Schools and Colleges) may validate the work taken at the institution by:

  1. Successful completion of a departmental "Challenge Examination" or through a nationally approved subject examination (i.e., CLEP or DANTES).
  2. Completion of 30 hours of residence credit at UIW with a GPA of 2.5 or higher. Students must apply to the Registrar for consideration of this option. Specific course credit must be identified and will be approved by the Discipline Coordinator and the School/College Dean in consultation with the Registrar.

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C. Block Credit in Religious Studies

A student may receive up to 12 semester hours of credit for lower-level undergraduate religious studies by successfully completing a post-secondary program of religious education. The criteria are available from the Religious Studies Discipline Coordinator.

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D. Credits from International Schools

  1. For consideration of transfer credit, official transcripts translated toEnglish are required. Course descriptions or syllabi (in English) are required to determine transfer acceptance or equivalence to UIW courses.
  2. English credit will not be awarded for courses completed in non-English speaking countries. Student may take CLEP or departmental challenge examinations to validate these credits. Such courses may be considered for meeting the foreign language area of the degree plan and the hours for this area will be waived.
  3. Credit from international sister institutions with which the University has documented articulation agreements will receive special consideration.

The UIW credential evaluation policy is available on our UIW International website and does apply to admissions into the UIW Online program under the Extended Academic Programs division.  Please see the requirements for what is acceptable for submitting an evaluation of an international transcript.

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E. Credit for Military Experience

  1. Students who have completed a minimum of six months of active duty in the armed forces of the United States may receive academic credit for 2 semester hours of physical education upon submission of an official copy of the DD214 form, or its equivalent.
  2. Other credit may be awarded for the completion of certain courses in military schools (beyond basic training) on the basis of recommendations made by the American Council on Education (ACE). Credit may be granted in academic fields in which UIW offers related study. An official military transcript must be sent to the Registrar for evaluation. Many service transcripts are available through the military transcripts service, AARTS, which is primarily for Army personnel. There are links for other military units on the Center for Veterans Affairs website. Contact our Veterans' Affairs Center for assistance.

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