General Academic Regulations

Student Academic Responsibilities

Because education is a uniquely personal experience, it is the individual responsibility of each student (1) to know the degree requirements for his or her own course of study; (2) to know the rules, regulations, and deadlines which govern the academic programs which are published in this catalog; and (3) to develop and follow schedules which comply with these course and program requirements. The University's faculty, advisors, and staff support each student's education in every way they can, but students must assume final responsibility to establish the timeline for advancing and completing their course of study, to register for the appropriate courses, and to complete all degree requirements. Students are also responsible for knowing and adhering to all University policies published in The Student Handbook. Registration in the University confirms students' acceptance of these obligations.

Academic Advising

In addition to maintaining a personal relationship between student and instructor in the classroom and beyond, the Registrar, regional site coordinators, and directors advise students and monitor their programs and progress. Staff and faculty advisors assist students in planning academic work, registration, and management of problems during their college career. They assist students in interpreting degree requirements and in determining which requirements have or have not been met. The University also keeps students informed of their academic progress through an academic monitoring system. The Registrar's Office sends students and their advisors final grade reports each term.

The University holds each student to be finally responsible for being fully informed about the graduation requirements for his or her own degree program and for arranging academic schedules to meet graduation requirements on the timetable the student establishes. Staff and Faculty advisors will do all they can through the advising processes to assist students in meeting their educational goals.

Academic Bankruptcy Policy

To declare "Academic Bankruptcy" a student must petition the Extended Studies Committee (undergraduate petitions) or the Graduate Studies Committee (graduate petitions) specifying the courses the student requests to be dropped. Only courses with grades of "D" and "F" may be dropped. Only courses taken ten semesters (excluding summer sessions) or more before the student's application for readmission may be dropped. The petition for Academic Bankruptcy must be made within six months following the student's readmission. Only students who are readmitted to and currently attending the University may petition the Extended Studies Committee for Academic Bankruptcy. When the Committee approves a petition for Academic Bankruptcy, the original grades will be shown on the transcript but a notation will be made and these grades will not be included in the calculation of grade point averages, nor will they be included in the satisfaction of degree requirements.

Class Attendance

Students may not be successful in college for many reasons, but the principle reasons for student failure are excessive absence from class and the lack of class preparation. The faculty and administration expect students to attend classes regularly and to establish adequate study patterns. Individual instructors establish their own attendance policies that are clearly stated in each course syllabus. The University reserves the right to withdraw any student from one or more classes or from the University for excessive absence. Students are responsible for any work missed as a result of absence. They should consult with each instructor to make satisfactory arrange­ments for academic work missed. This should be done in advance whenever possible. Absence from class does not constitute withdrawal from the class or from the College of Graduate and Extended Studies. Students who leave school without completing the withdrawal process forfeit their claim to honorable dismissal and will receive a grade of "F" for all courses in progress.

Classification of Students

Students are classified by the Hours of credit achieved.

Freshman: 1-29 Hours
Sophomore: 30-59 Hours
Junior: 60-89 Hours
Senior: 90 or more Hours

Special Students are not matriculating for a degree but wish to enroll in specific courses. They may be full- or part-time and may or may not have a baccalaureate degree.
Part-Time Students have matriculated for a degree but in any given term are registered for fewer than six semester hours of credit.
CMU First Class (Dual Credit) Students are enrolled in college courses while concurrently enrolled in a high school program.
Graduate Students have received an undergraduate degree and are enrolled in a graduate program of study.

Academic Load

Undergraduate Semesters

  • Ten (10) hours of academic credit is considered the normal load per sub-session for undergraduate students registered in CGES terms T1, T2, T3, T4, and S8.
  • No undergra­duate CGES student may register for more than 10 hours of academic credit per sub-session T1, T2, T3, T4, and S8 unless that student has a grade point average of 3.20 in the previous term and obtains written permission from the Provost of the University.
  • No CGES student may register for more than 12 hours in any single sub-session (T1, T2, T3, T4, and S8) unless that student has a grade point average of 3.20 in the previous term and obtains written permission from the Provost of the University, and only under extreme circumstances.
  • No CGES student may exceed 21 hours in a "semester" or combination of sub-sessions unless that student has a grade point average of 3.20 in the previous term and obtains written permission from the Provost of the University, and only under extreme circumstances.

Graduate Semesters (GRFA, GRSP, and GRSU)

  • Six (6) hours of academic credit is considered the normal load per term for CGES graduate students registered in semesters GRFA, GRSP, or GRSU.
  • Graduate students may not register for more than nine (9) hours per semester GRFA, GRSP, or GRSU without written permission of the Dean of the University.

Courses, Grades, and Grade Point Averages

Courses and grades are given on a semester-hour basis. Normally, one semester hour of credit means one hour of instruction per week for a semester (15-16 hours of class instruction) plus two or more hours of study for each hour of instruction, but instructional time and credit hours may vary. Grade reports are issued to students at mid-term and following the end of each semester. Only final grades for courses are entered on the student's transcript. The transcript is the individual student's permanent academic record, maintained and secured by the Registrar's Office.

The University uses the system of grades, grade symbols, and quality points described below to report each student's academic achievement on grade reports and transcripts.

A Grade Points 4
B Grade Points 3
C Grade Points 2
D Grade Points 1
F Grade Points 0
P Pass, credit hours only  
I Incomplete  
W Withdrawal  
AU Audit, no credit hours  

All courses taken on a letter grade basis (A through F) are used to compute Grade Point Averages (GPA). For grades in courses repeated, see below. A student's GPA is calculated by dividing the number of grade points earned by the number of credit hours attempted on a letter grade basis. As a result, GPAs range from 0 to 4.0. Courses taken on a Pass/Fail (P/F) basis are not computed in the student's GPA. Few courses are offered on a P/F grade basis. The grades of "I," "W," and "AU" earn no credit and are not computed in GPA.

The grade of "I"(Incomplete) can be given by an instructor at the end of the term only when both of the following conditions are met: (1) the student is unable to finish the work of a course because of exceptional circumstances which can be documented, and (2) the student has completed at least three-fourths of the coursework and can complete the remaining work apart from class meetings. Faculty should file a plan for completion of incomplete work with the Registrar. All incomplete work must be completed by mid-term of the following semester. After this time, if the "I" has not been removed, it will automatically convert to a grade of "F." Additional work will no longer be accepted, and the grade appeals policy (see page 36) will apply.

A student may withdraw from a class with a grade of "W" until the last week of classes for the term as defined by the Academic Calendar. The grade of "W" will not be calculated into the student's GPA. A student may not withdraw from a class after this date.

The grade of "AU" is given to students who formally register as "auditors." Auditors must have the approval of the instructor prior to registering and are expected to attend regularly. They receive no credit, and no grade is given, but the hours are included in determining a student's academic load. Upon the report from the professor that an audit has been satisfactorily completed, notation of the audit is made on a permanent record. Special or part-time students pay normal tuition rates to audit courses.

Grade Appeals

Students have the right to appeal a grade. All student appeals must be initiated, in writing, within one calendar year of the date the grade is first posted. In all steps of that appeal, the faculty member must be consulted and the burden of proof is on the student. Students should first make every effort to resolve grade issues with the course instructor. This is the most likely avenue to produce satisfactory results.

If the issue is not resolved with the course instructor, the student should next appeal to the regional site coordinator. In these appeals, the course instructor will be consulted and the grade cannot be changed without the instructor's consent.

If the issue is still not resolved and if the student wishes to continue the appeal, the student should consult the regional site coordinator for directions in presenting a petition to the Extended Studies Committee (undergraduate petitions) or the Graduate Studies Committee (graduate petitions). The course instructor will be consulted in advance, notified of any hearings, and permitted to be present at the hearing. If a two-thirds majority of the respective committee judges that a grade change is warranted, the committee will direct the Registrar to make the change. The decision of this committee is final and binding on all parties. (Faculty-initiated grade change requests must be completed and filed with the Office of the Registrar within one calendar year of the date the grade is first posted).

Repeated Courses

Students may repeat any course in which they received a grade of A, B, C or D one time and receive financial aid for the course.  If the course was taken as dual credit the student may repeat it twice while receiving financial aid because they did not receive financial aid for taking it in high school.  If a student receives a grade of F in a course, the student may repeat that course as often as necessary to achieve a passing grade.  The most recent grade earned will be counted in the student's grade point average. All registrations and grades will be entered on the permanent record, but a notation that the course has been repeated will be added to previous enrollments in the course.

Course Numbering System

Courses numbered 000-099 do not fulfill any graduation requirements.  They are developmental courses designed to prepare students for college-level work.

Courses numbered 100-199 are designed with few or no prerequisites.  They are survey courses, courses defining basic concepts, or courses presenting the terminology of a discipline.  Typically, courses in this range will focus on recall of facts and explaining ideas or concepts.  Outcomes may include words such as:  define, discover, duplicate, list, memorize, repeat, state, classify, describe, discuss, explain, identify, locate, recognize, report, and select.

Courses numbered 200-299 may have prerequisites.  They include survey courses of areas of a discipline.  Typically, courses in this range will focus on explaining ideas or concepts and using information in new situations.  Outcomes may include words such as:  classify, describe, discuss, explain, identify, locate, recognize, report, select, execute, implement, solve, use, demonstrate, interpret, operate, schedule, and sketch.

Courses numbered 300-399 usually have prerequisites and typically are taken by upper division students and majors.  Generally, these are courses specific to a major, not offered as part of the general education model.  Typically, courses in this range will focus on drawing connections among ideas and justifying a decision.  Outcomes may include words such as:  analyze, differentiate, organize, relate, compare, contrast, distinguish, examine, experiment, question, test, appraise, argue, defend, judge, select, support, value, critique, and weigh.

Courses numbered 400-499 usually have prerequisites and are taken by advanced students in the major.  Capstone courses generally fall in this category.  Typically, courses in this range will focus on evaluating decisions and creating new work.  Outcomes may include words such as:  appraise, argue, defend, judge, select, support, value, critique, weigh, design, construct, create, formulate, investigate, invent, and author.

Catalog in Effect - Graduation Requirements

Students' degree requirements are generally governed by the catalog in effect when they matriculate for a degree so long as enrollment is continuous. Students may choose to meet the requirements of any subsequent catalog published during their enrollment but not of an earlier catalog. Former students who are readmitted must meet the graduation requirements in the catalog at the time of re-enrollment.

Generally, students need to have earned at least 124 credit hours with a cumulative GPA of 2.0 to graduate. Some programs have other requirements, so students should check with their advisors and with division chairs.

Registration

Students must register on the days and at the times designated by the Dean of the University. They should register only after a conference with their advisor. Deadlines for registration and changes in registration are published on the Academic Calendar.

Changes in classes or class sections may be made at no charge during the first week of classes by completing a Change of Course Form from the regional site coordinator. After the first week of classes, courses may not be added. Any exceptions require written permission from the course instructor and the regional site coordinator. Courses may be dropped at any time prior to one week before the last day of classes for the term. Students are urged to remember that the grade of "F" will be recorded on their transcripts for every course that is not completed but not officially dropped. Courses are not officially dropped until the Change of Course Form has been filed in the Office of the Registrar.

Changes in Registration

Changes in classes or class sections may be made only before the deadlines published in the academic calendar by completing a Change of Course Form obtained from the regional site coordinator. Any exceptions require written permission from the course instructor or the dean. Courses may be dropped at anytime during the term prior to final exam week. Students are urged to remember that the grade of "F" will be recorded on their transcripts for every course that is not completed but not officially dropped. Courses are not officially dropped until the Change of Course Form has been filed in the Registrar's Office.

Course instructors may request that any student be administratively dropped from a course for academic misconduct, excessive absence, or disruptive or other unacceptable classroom behavior. With the approval of the Dean of the University, the student will be withdrawn from the class. No charge will be assessed for these changes

Enrollment in CGES/Online Courses

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS) students requesting permission to enroll in online or statewide courses during the Fall or Spring semesters must meet one of the following eligibility criteria:

Through no fault of his/her own, the student must enroll in a specific course to graduate and said course is not available before graduation in CLAS. (If a student postpones taking said course until his/her Senior year that could have been taken earlier, the student may not qualify for enrollment under this criterion.)

The student will benefit educationally by taking a course and is recommended by his/her advisor, has approval of the Dean, and agrees to pay all tuition/fees required to take the course above regular CLAS tuition and fees.

Withdrawal from Classes

No student may withdraw from classes the last week of classes.

A student who wishes to withdraw from the University must do so electronically by filling out the online withdrawal form on MyCMU. It is the student's responsibility to see that this withdrawal form is completed. . An honorable dismissal will be granted to all students who desire to withdraw from the University if they are in good academic standing, are not subject to discipline, have made satisfactory arrangements for settling their financial account, and file the completed withdrawal form.   Students who withdraw from the University will receive grades for the courses in which they are registered according to the grading policies published in this catalog.

The University reserves the right to withdraw any student from one or more classes or from the University for academic misconduct, excessive absence, disruptive behavior, or other sufficient cause.

Withdrawal from CMU First Class (DUAL CREDIT)

A CMU First Class (dual credit) student who wishes to withdraw from the University must obtain a withdrawal form from the CMU First Class (dual credit) coordinator at the High School who will outline the proper procedure for withdrawal. It is the student's responsibility to see that this withdrawal form is completed, signed, and sent to the University.

Iowa Military Deployment Policy

Central Methodist University will offer the following options to a student who is a member or the spouse of a member if the member has a dependent child, of the Iowa National Guard or U.S. forces who is ordered to state or federal military service or duty:

Withdraw the student's entire registration and receive a full refund of tuition and mandatory fees. The Office of the Registrar, in concert with the Business Office, will assure the timely processing of all withdrawal requests and refunds.

If requested by the student, make arrangements with the student's instructors to assist in the request to receive an Incomplete in accordance with institutional policy. All coursework must be completed in accordance with the Incomplete Policy found in the college catalog. If such arrangements are made, the student's registration and all applicable fees will be assessed for courses in full.

Medical Withdrawal

Students may withdraw from classes at any time during the term for medical reasons. Requests made after the last day to drop with a "W" must be approved by the Dean of the University. The Registrar will indicate the withdrawal by placing a "W" on the transcript. A student (or someone representing the student) must initiate the medical withdrawal process by notifying the Dean of the University or regional site coordinator who will outline the proper procedures for withdrawal. The student seeking a medical withdrawal must present a bona fide medical excuse signed by a physician. The regular refund schedule (see page 33) will apply to medical withdrawals.

Students who have been granted a medical withdrawal and wish to re-enter the University must follow the standard re-admission policies and must provide satisfactory evidence that their medical condition will no longer impede their academic performance.

Federal Definition of Credit Hour

Credit hour: Except as provided in 34 CFR 668.8(k) and (l), a credit hour is an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutionally established equivalency that reasonably approximates not less than –

  1. One hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out of class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks for one semester or trimester hour of credit, or ten to twelve weeks for one quarter hour of credit, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time; or
  2. At least an equivalent amount of work as required in paragraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours. (34 CFR 600.2)

CMU’s Calculation of Credit Hour

CMU will observe the following minimum time requirements for courses:

  1. Online courses are as rigorous as on-ground courses and typically require as much time to complete the coursework as the on-ground counterpart. Thus, students are expected to demonstrate they have met the student learning outcomes equivalent to a traditionally delivered course. 
  2.  Hybrid courses combine on-ground and online study. These courses are as rigorous as completely on-ground courses and typically require as much time to complete the coursework as the on-ground counterpart. Thus, students are expected to demonstrate they have met the student learning outcomes equivalent to a traditionally delivered course. 

Students will have the opportunity to meet learning outcomes in a number of ways through online and/or hybrid coursework.

  • Direct faculty instruction will include:
    1. Weekly threaded discussion forums
    2. PowerPoint Presentations without audio
    3. PowerPoint Presentations with audio
    4. Lecture notes
    5. Video lectures
    6. Assigned videos (does not include lecture videos)
    7. Quizzes/Exams
    8. Rough Draft feedback
    9. Face-to-Face meetings (hybrid only)
  • Out of class student work will include:
    1. Readings
    2. Written assignments (papers, journals, reviews, etc)
    3. Rough Draft papers
    4. Paper revisions
    5. Research
    6. Case Studies
    7. Power Point Presentations
    8. Assigned homework problems
  • Clinical/Practicum/Internship

Calculations for an 8-week course:

Credit Hours Direct Instruction   Hours Student Work Hours Total Course Hours
1 15 30 45/8-weeks
2 30 60 90/8-weeks
3 45 90 135/8-weeks
4 60 120 180/8-weeks
5 90 150 240/8-weeks

Calculations for a 16-week course:

Credit Hours Direct Instruction   Hours Student Work Hours Total Course Hours
1 15 30 45/16-weeks
2 30 60 90/16-weeks
3 45 90 135/16-weeks
4 60 120 180/16-weeks
5 90 150 240/16-weeks

**Final exams and/or presentations are completed during the 16th week.

Calculations for direct faculty instruction:

Weekly threaded discussion forums 1 post + 2 replies = 1 hour
PowerPoint Presentations without audio 1 slide = 3 minutes
PowerPoint Presentations with audio 1 side variable = 5-10 minutes
Lecture notes 1 page = 5 minutes
Video lectures Variable = 30 minutes – 1 hour
Face-to-Face meetings (hybrid only) 1 hour = 1 hour
Assigned videos (does not include lecture videos) Variable 30 minutes – 1 hour
Quizzes/Exams Variable 30 minute – 1 hour
Rough draft feedback 30 minutes per page

Calculations for student work:

Readings Variable 10-30 minutes per page depending on content
Written assignments (papers, journals, reviews, etc.) 1 hour per page
Rough draft papers 1 hour per page
Paper revisions 30 minutes per page
Research 1 hour per article/source
Case Studies 1 hour per page
PowerPoint Presentations 30 minutes per slide
Assigned homework problems Variable 10-30 minutes per problem based on math level

Calculations for Applied Music (Private Lessons)

45 hours of practice 1 credit hour
90 hours of practice 2 credit hours
135 hours of practice 3 credit hours

Calculations for Clinical/Practicum/Internship/Lab:

Clinical 40 work hours = 1 credit hour
Practicum Variable 20-40 observation hours = 1 credit hour
Internship 40 work hours = 1 credit hour
Lab 30 contact hours = 1 credit hour

Calculations for Independent Study:

Independent projects, such as special problems, in which the student works more or less individually at various locations, ordinarily requiring intermittent consultation with the professor.  The instructor will identify appropriate outcomes/objectives to meet the credit hour requirements of the course.

Hours spent on the course per week may vary from week to week, though the standard total time spent is as follows

40 hours of student work + 5 hours of direct instruction 1 credit hour
80 hours of student work + 10 hours of direct instruction 2 credit hours
120 hours of student work + 15 hours of direct instruction 3 credit hours
160 hours of student work + 20 hours of direct instruction 4 credit hours
205 hours of student work + 25 hours of direct instruction 5 credit hours

Course Delivery Definition

The following definitions of educational delivery methods are based on the Sloan Consortium’s (2010) course classification system. For the purposes of these definitions, synchronous is defined as class instruction and student learning occurring at the same time (for example: in the classroom at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, Wednesday, Friday); asynchronous is defined as class instruction and student learning occurring at different times (for example: viewing a recorded lecture for the first time three days after it is conducted). Please note that these definitions pertain to the delivery method not course content.

  • Traditional course: 0% of course content delivered online. No online technology is used. Course content is delivered in the classroom.  Instructor and student interactions occur face-to-face in the classroom.
  • Web Facilitated: 1-29% of course content delivered online. Web-based technology is used to enhance a face-to-face course. Course materials (handouts, assignments, lecture notes, syllabi) are stored and available to students online in the Learning Management System. Instructor and student interactions occur face-to-face in the classroom.
  • Hybrid/Blended course: 30-79% of course content delivered online.  Instructor and student interactions occur both in the classroom and online. The number of classroom meetings is reduced to a minimum of two meetings for an eight-week course and a minimum of four meetings for a sixteen-week course. All classroom meetings are synchronous. 
  • Online course: 80+% of course content is delivered online. Instructor and student interactions occur online through: discussion, chat, web conferencing, and other activities. Asynchronous class meetings may be conducted using BlackBoard Collabortate; however there is no requirement for a minimum number of meetings. Students are able to interact with one another and the instructor through the online Learning Management System.