The Honor System
Among the most significant traditions of William & Mary is the student-administered honor system. The honor system is based upon the premise that a person’s honor is their most cherished attribute. The Honor Code outlines the conduct that cannot be tolerated within a community of trust. Prohibited conduct is limited to three specific areas of lying, cheating and stealing. The Honor Code is an agreement among all students taking classes at the university or participating in it’s educational programs (e.g., study abroad or internship activities) not to lie, cheat or steal. This agreement is effective upon acceptance of admission at the university and through the student’s affiliation with the university even during periods that enrollment is not continuous. A complete description of student rights and responsibilities can be found in the Student Handbook.
The University will not confer a degree if a student has a pending honor case or has not completed all sanctions, including probation and deferred suspension, that resulted from a student code of conduct or honor violation.
An education system centered upon classroom instruction is obviously predicated on the concept of regular class attendance. In support of this concept, the following principles are to be observed:
- Except for reasonable cause, students are expected to be present at all regularly scheduled class meetings, including their last scheduled class in each of their courses preceding and their first scheduled class in each of their courses following the fall break, Thanksgiving, semester break, and spring holidays.
- Students whose attendance becomes unsatisfactory to the extent that their course performance is affected adversely should be so informed by their instructor and reported to the Dean of Students by completing a care report.
- Each student is responsible for notifying professors of absences. In view of the Honor Code, a student’s explanation of class absence is expected to be truthful and therefore, should be sufficient in most instances.
- Students who will miss classes due to personal difficulties or family emergencies should contact the Dean of Students Office as soon as possible.
Student Emergency Notification
Students are expected to be present at all regularly scheduled class meetings and abide by their faculty member’s attendance policy as stated in their syllabus. The Dean of Students Office serves as a resource to help students notify faculty members of extenuating circumstances. The Dean of Students Office requires supporting documentation for the extenuating circumstance.
Depending on the nature of the extenuating circumstance, a Dean of Students Office staff member may follow-up with the student to provide support resources. Emergency notifications to the appropriate faculty member will include general and discrete language to describe the extenuating circumstance and request support for the student.
The emergency notification does not excuse the student from course material, assignments, or examinations. It is the student’s responsibility to follow-up with the faculty member about the emergency notification and opportunities to complete missed work as soon as feasible (e.g. within 3-7 days).
A final examination is an important part of the evaluation of each student’s work and is expected in all courses except seminars, colloquia, studio, or writing courses where final examinations may be unnecessary or inappropriate. The final examination schedule can be viewed at www.wm.edu/registrar.
The time allocated for in-class final examinations is three hours, unless a shorter time is specified in the course syllabus. The deadline for returning take-home final examinations is the scheduled examination date for that class.
Except in narrowly defined circumstances, changes in the examination schedule are not allowed. Individual faculty members may not grant permission to reschedule or defer a final examination.
Requests to reschedule a final examination may be made when a student has three scheduled final examinations in four consecutive exam periods on consecutive days, when there is a conflict between a student’s scheduled examinations, or when a student wishes to take an examination with a different section of the same course. Such requests to reschedule a final examination within the examination period should be filed with the Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs. Requests must be made by the last day of classes for the semester.
All other requests for exceptions to the examination schedule should be filed with the Dean of Students Office and may be made on the basis of extenuating circumstances such as:
- Medical circumstances (physical and psychological) verified by a healthcare professional
- International student travel complications without alternatives
- Family emergency, such as death of a close family member
- Conflict with a religious holiday/service
- Interview or training for a permanent job that cannot be rescheduled
- Interview for graduate or professional school
- Activities in which the student is formally representing William & Mary
Students must provide supporting documentation with their request. Students should not assume that a request is approved until they receive written approval from the appropriate dean.
Final examinations that are deferred will be scheduled for the first full week of classes of the following regular semester. Students with deferred examinations will receive an initial grade of “I,” incomplete. In this case, the “I” grade should be changed as early in the following semester as possible.
Final Exams and Tests During the Last Week of Classes
No test or final examinations may be given during the last week of classes or during the period between the end of classes and the beginning of the examination period or during any reading period. Other assignments, such as projects, short quizzes, homework and papers may be due during the last week of classes as long as they do not total more than 25% of the final grade. There is no restriction on material due during the regularly scheduled final exam period.
This policy does not apply to final laboratory examinations, in-class presentations, oral examinations, performance courses, wellness activity classes, COLL400 and senior thesis projects, on-campus COLL300 courses, independent study projects and one-credit courses. In exceptional circumstances, the Dean of the Faculty or designee may waive these requirements.
Transcripts: Transcripts of academic records for William & Mary are issued by the Office of the University Registrar only upon the student’s request. A fee of seven dollars is charged for each official transcript. Official transcripts mailed to students will be placed in a signed, sealed envelope and will bear the stamp “Official Transcript Issued to Student.” Official transcripts usually are prepared and released within 3-5 business days. Additional time should be allowed for requests made at the end of the semester or during registration periods.
Requests are made through the National Student Clearinghouse.
Currently enrolled students and graduates since 2007 may view their unofficial transcript on line via Banner Self Service.
In accordance with the 1988 Virginia Debt Collection Act, Section 2.1-735, transcripts will not be released for students who have outstanding fines or fees, nor are they viewable over the web.
Verification of Enrollment or Degrees: Requests for official verification of enrollment or degrees earned at the university should be addressed to the University Registrar’s Office. Additional information is available on the University Registrar’s web site at http://www.wm.edu/registrar. The university sends regular enrollment and graduation updates to the National Student Clearinghouse, which is used by many loan agencies to verify enrollment. The university cannot verify enrollment or degrees for students who have submitted a request for confidentiality.
This policy applies to all students in attendance at William & Mary, including the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (the university).
The university protects the privacy of student records in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Virginia Health Records Privacy Act, and provides students with access to their own records in accordance with FERPA. For questions about FERPA, please email the University Registrar’s Office.
A. Student Records Rights.
FERPA affords students certain rights with respect to their education records, and defines situations in which the university may release information from student records with student consent. Education records, under FERPA, are documents, files, and other materials that contain information directly related to a student and are maintained by the university or a university agent. Student rights include:
- The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days after the day the university receives a request for access. A student should submit to the University Registrar’s Office a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The school official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the school official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
Students who are citizens of Virginia also have rights to their records under the Virginia Freedom of Information Act. Information about the process for requesting records under the Act, and the university’s obligations, is provided in the university’s Freedom of Information Act Policy.
- The right to request the amendment of an element of the student’s education records that the student believes is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.
A student who wishes to request an amendment should write the university official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.
If the university decides not to amend the record as requested, the student will be notified in writing of the decision and of the student’s right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
The right to provide written consent before the university discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.
The school discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interest.
Upon request, the university may also disclose education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
The types of disclosures permitted without student consent are described in Section B, below.
- The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the university to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:
Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202
See also Section C, below, for a discussion of other university policies relating to student records.
B. Disclosures Permitted Without Student Consent.
FERPA permits the disclosure of PII from a students’ education records, without consent of the student, if the disclosure meets certain conditions found in §99.31 of the FERPA regulations. Except for disclosures to school officials (item 1 below), disclosures related to some judicial orders or lawfully issued subpoenas (item 8 below), disclosures of directory information (item 14 below), and disclosures to the student, §99.32 of FERPA regulations requires the institution to record the disclosure. Eligible students have a right to inspect and review the record of disclosures.
William & Mary may disclose PII from a student’s education records without obtaining prior written consent of the student under the following conditions:
- To other school officials whom the school has determined to have legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the university in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person serving on the Board of Visitors; or a student serving on an official committee, such as the Honor Council. A school official also may include a volunteer or contractor outside of the university who performs an institutional service or function for which the university would otherwise use its own employees and who is under the direct control of the university with respect to the use and maintenance of personally identifiable information from education records, such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent or a student volunteering to assist another school official in performing their tasks.
A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill their professional responsibilities for the university.(§99.31(a)(1))
- To officials of another school where the student seeks or intends to enroll, or where the student is already enrolled if the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer, subject to the requirements of §99.34. (§99.31(a)(2))
- To authorized representatives of the U. S. Comptroller General, the U. S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or State and local educational authorities, such as a State postsecondary authority that is responsible for supervising the university’s State-supported education programs. Disclosures under this provision may be made, subject to the requirements of §99.35, in connection with an audit or evaluation of Federal or State-supported education programs, or for the enforcement of or compliance with Federal legal requirements that relate to those programs. These entities may make further disclosures of PII to outside entities that are designated by them as their authorized representatives to conduct any audit, evaluation, or enforcement or compliance activity on their behalf. (§§99.31(a)(3) and 99.35)
- In connection with financial aid for which the student has applied or which the student has received, if the information is necessary to determine eligibility for the aid, determine the amount of the aid, determine the conditions of the aid, or enforce the terms and conditions of the aid. (§99.31(a)(4))
- To organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, the university, in order to: (a) develop, validate, or administer predictive tests; (b) administer student aid programs; or (c) improve instruction. (§99.31(a)(6))
- To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions. ((§99.31(a)(7))
- To parents of an eligible student if the student is a dependent for IRS tax purposes. (§99.31(a)(8)). Pursuant to Virginia law, the university will disclose such information, if certain conditions are satisfied, as described under Section C(2) below.
- To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena. (§99.31(a)(9))
- To appropriate officials in connection with a health or safety emergency, subject to §99.36. Under this exception, William & Mary may disclose PII if the university determines that the person to whom the PII is to be disclosed needs the information to protect the student or other individual(s) from an articulable and significant threat to their health or safety (§99.31(a)(10))
- To a victim of an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or a non-forcible sex offense, subject to the requirements of §99.39. The disclosure may only include the final results of the disciplinary proceeding with respect to that alleged crime or offense, regardless of the finding. (§99.31(a)(13))
- To the general public, the final results of a disciplinary proceeding, subject to the requirements of §99.39, if the university determines the student is an alleged perpetrator of a crime of violence or non-forcible sex offense and the student has committed a violation of the university’s rules or policies with respect to the allegation made against him or her. (§99.31(a)(14))
- To parents of a student regarding the student’s violation of any Federal, State, or local law, or of any rule or policy of the university, governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance if the university determines the student committed a student code of conduct violation and the student is under the age of 21. (§99.31(a)(15))
- Directory Information: In addition, FERPA permits the disclosure of information deemed by the university to be “Directory Information” without written consent. (§99.31(a)(11)) This information includes:
- Student name
- University email address
- Telephone numbers
- Current classification
- Previous schools attended and degrees awarded
- Dates of attendance
- Current enrollment status
- Degree(s) earned and dates awarded
- Major(s), Minor
- Scholarships, awards, honors or special recognition
- Height, weight, and birth date of members of athletic teams
Students may prohibit the release of Directory Information by completing a “Request for Confidentiality” form, located on the University Registrar’s website at https://www.wm.edu/offices/registrar/documents/other/request_for_confidentiality.pdf. This request must be submitted in person to the Office of the University Registrar and will remain on file indefinitely until written notice is submitted by the student to remove it.
In accordance with Va. Code Section 23.1-405 (C), the university shall not disclose the address, telephone number, or email address of a student unless the student has consented in writing to such disclosure. Disclosure of a student’s address, telephone number, and/or email address to other students through the online student directory shall be made only to individuals with university log-in credentials and with affirmative consent of the student.
14. In addition, recent federal guidelines permit release of student information for the purpose of data collection and analysis.
i. First, the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education authorities (Federal and State Authorities) may allow access to your records and private information without your consent to any third party designated by a Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is principally engaged in the provision of education, such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution.
ii. Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow access to your education records and private information without your consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, such as Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, in certain cases even when the university objects to or does not request such research.
15. The Solomon Amendment (10 U.S.C. § 983) is a federal law that requires institutions to provide directory-type information on students, at least 17 years of age who are registered for at least one credit, upon request from representatives of the Department of Defense for military recruiting purposes. This information, referred to as “student recruiting information,” includes: student name, addresses, telephone listings, age or year of birth, place of birth, level of education or degrees received, academic major, and the most recent previous educational institution in which the student was enrolled. A request for student recruiting information under Solomon must be honored unless the student has completed the Request for Confidentiality Form (pdf) and submitted the completed form to the Office of the University Registrar.
C. Additional University Policies and Practices Relating to Student Records.
- Medical/Health Records. Medical information in student records generally is not subject to additional protections, except for records of the Student Health Center and the Counseling Center that are protected by the Virginia Health Records Privacy Act.
The Act generally prohibits the disclosure of a student’s health information without the student’s consent, unless an exception applies. The Health Records Privacy Act does not have a provision that permits sharing of health records within the institution similar to the “school officials” FERPA exception, but it does allow disclosure of records (other than psychotherapy notes) by the Student Health Center and Counseling Center to the university’s Threat Assessment Team. The Act also contains numerous other exceptions, including disclosures in response to a subpoena satisfying specific statutory requirements.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) does not apply to education records, even if these records contain medical information; HIPAA exempts education records from its privacy regulations, because these records are protected by FERPA.
- Other Policies. For additional information regarding students’ rights related to the release of personally identifiable information, see the University Registrar’s website at http://www.wm.edu/registrar or the section entitled ‘Statement of Rights and Responsibilities’ in the Student Handbook. Additional university policies include the following:
- Release of Academic, Student Conduct, and Financial Information to Parents: Students who wish their parents, guardians, and/or spouse to have access to academic, financial or student conduct information protected by FERPA may provide consent by completing the Personal Information tab in Banner self-service. Students have the right to revoke this consent at any time. Parents of dependent students have the right to information about their children; however, they must provide tax documents if there is no release already on file with the university.
- Student Assessment: William & Mary conducts periodic reviews of its curricular and co-curricular programs as part of the university’s state-mandated responsibility to monitor student outcomes and assure the continuing quality of a William & Mary degree. Surveys, course portfolios (including examples of student work), and other procedures are used to gather information about student achievement and experiences. Information collected as part of the assessment program will not be used to evaluate individual performance, and assessment results will not be released in a form that is personally identifiable. Students who do not want their work to be used in institutional or program assessments must submit a letter indicating that reference to the Dean of Undergraduate Studies.
- First, the U.S. Comptroller General, the U.S. Attorney General, the U.S. Secretary of Education, or state and local education authorities (Federal and State Authorities) may allow access to your records and private information without your consent to any third party designated by a Federal or State Authority to evaluate a federal- or state-supported education program. The evaluation may relate to any program that is principally engaged in the provision of education, such as early childhood education and job training, as well as any program that is administered by an education agency or institution.
- Second, Federal and State Authorities may allow access to your education records and private information without your consent to researchers performing certain types of studies, such as Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems, in certain cases even when the university objects to or does not request such research.
III. Authority and Implementation
This policy is approved by the Provost. The University Registrar is charged with implementation of this policy.
This policy was amended by the Provost effective July 1, 2018, to (1) comply with Virginia Code 23.1-405(C) on student records and Virginia Code Section 2.2-3705.4 on FOIA by removing address (permanent, local, and email) and telephone numbers and adding hometown from Section II.B.13, (2) make changes conforming to amendments to other policies and (3) make formatting improvements.
Classification of Students
Academic Classification: A student’s academic classification is based on total credits earned toward a William & Mary degree. These credits include both institutional and transfer hours.
Freshman 0 - 23 credits earned
Sophomore 24 - 53 credits earned
Junior 54 - 84 credits earned
Senior 85 or more credits earned
William & Mary recognizes that many students arrive having completed college credits through a variety of programs including the Advanced Placement Program of the College Board, the International Baccalaureate Program, or concurrent enrollment programs offered through their high school. These credits are reflected in the student’s academic classification.
Social Classification: Definition of a degree-seeking undergraduate according to the year in which the student could be expected to graduate assuming a 4-year program following high school graduation (e.g., a new freshman in 2022 is designated as “Class of 2026”). For transfer or older students, the social class is defined by calculating or extrapolating eight semesters of full-time-equivalent postsecondary enrollment. Social Class will be recalculated upon readmission for students who take a leave of absence from the university.
Full Time Status: Students at William & Mary are expected to remain enrolled full-time throughout their academic career. A full-time degree-seeking student must register for at least 12 and not more than 18 credits each fall and spring semester. Audits do not count toward the 12 credit hour minimum required for undergraduate students. Students on academic probation and students carrying 3 or more incomplete (“I”) grades are limited to a maximum of 16 credits per semester.
Students in their final undergraduate term, who have applied for graduation, may enroll in fewer than 12 credits, as long as they are enrolled in all courses required for their degree. This approved underload is administered by the degree manager in the University Registrar’s Office.
Petitions for underloads or overloads, when warranted by special circumstances, may be granted by the Committee on Academic Status. Students submitting petitions for academic exceptions should continue to attend all classes until notified that the exception has been granted.
The normal load for a student planning to graduate with a degree in four years is 15 credit hours per semester, or 30 credits each academic year. Work successfully completed during a Summer Session is counted toward the 120 academic credits required for graduation, as is the case with transfer or advanced placement credit.
Medical Underload: Students unable to undertake a full academic schedule for medical and/or mental health reasons may petition for a medical underload. Petitions for medical underloads must be submitted to the Medical Review Committee (a sub-committee of the Committee on Academic Status) through the Dean of Students Office. The granting of a medical underload may be contingent upon additional restrictions or requirements. If granted, medical underloads normally do not result in any refund of tuition or fees. Inquiries regarding refunds should be directed to the Office of the Bursar. Students carrying a medical underload will be expected to meet the continuance regulations in this catalog.
Underload: Students must request approval from the Committee on Academic Status through the Dean of Students Office to carry fewer than 12 earned hours during a regular semester, except under the circumstances described above for students in their final term. Audited classes do not count toward the 12 earned hours, but do count toward the 18 credit hour maximum allowed for undergraduate students. Students carrying an unauthorized underload are subject to withdrawal after the add/drop period, can be placed on probation by the Committee on Academic Status, and/or can be referred to the Community Values & Restorative Practices for failure to comply with university rules and regulations. Students must pay full tuition and fees if they are carrying an unauthorized underload. An unauthorized underload counts as a full semester toward the 10-semester rule. Students carrying an underload approved before the end of add/drop may receive a reduction in tuition, but pay full student fees. Students who are considering a petition for underload should consult with scholarship/financial aid and insurance providers to make certain they understand all the financial implications of a reduction in load. Students carrying an underload will be expected to meet the continuance regulations in this catalog. Petitions to underload should be submitted through the Dean of Students Office.
Overload: Petitions to enroll for more than 18 hours must be submitted to the Committee on Academic Status through the Dean of Students Office. Students wishing to add courses for audit that will cause them to carry more than 18 registered hours must also petition for an overload. Overloads of more than 20 credits will be granted rarely and only for extraordinary circumstances. First-year students are not permitted to carry overloads.
Summer School: Courses offered during the summer at William & Mary can fulfill COLL, proficiency, and major requirements. Students may register for up to sixteen credits per summer. However, they are advised not to take more than two intensive, five-week courses in the same session. Petitions for overloads must be approved by the Committee on Academic Status. Registration for summer courses ordinarily takes place in March. Additional information is available from the Office of the University Registrar.
Enrollment in Graduate Courses: An undergraduate student may take courses at the university numbered 500 or above for undergraduate credit to be counted toward the bachelor’s degree provided that:
- The student has a grade point average of at least 2.5 overall and 3.0 in the subject field of the course;
- The student has the appropriate prerequisites;
- The material offered in the course is relevant to the student’s program and is not available in the undergraduate curriculum;
- The student obtains prior approval of the instructor, the department chairperson, the appropriate graduate dean, and the assistant dean for undergraduate academic affairs; and
- The student shall not receive graduate credit for the course.
Undergraduate students who have a grade point average of at least 3.0 may take for graduate credit in their senior year up to six hours of courses normally offered for graduate credit, provided that these hours are in excess of all requirements for the bachelor’s degree and that the students obtain the written consent of the instructor, the chair of the department or dean of the School, assistant dean in Arts & Sciences, and the vice dean of research and graduate studies in Arts & Sciences, at the time of registration. Such students will be considered the equivalent of unclassified (post baccalaureate) students as far as the application of credit for these courses toward an advanced degree at the university is concerned.
Registration and Withdrawal
Continuing students should register for their courses in April for the Fall semester and in November for the Spring semester. Complete registration instructions are available on the University Registrar’s web site at http://www.wm.edu/registrar in October for the Spring semester and in March for summer school and Fall semester. The Office of the University Registrar also coordinates registration for incoming freshmen and transfer students.
Add/Drop: For a period after the beginning of classes a student may add or drop courses. Deadlines and procedures for adding and dropping courses are available on the University Registrar’s web site at http://www.wm.edu/registrar. Students who wish to add or drop classes must do so on or before the published deadlines. Unless correct procedures are followed, course changes have no official standing and will not be recognized as valid by the university. Courses dropped during the add/drop period are not displayed on the student’s academic transcript. A student may not add or drop a course after the last day of add/drop except in unusual circumstances. In these cases, the student must submit a petition to the Committee on Academic Status. Petition forms are available through the Dean of Students Office. Petitions to add or drop a course must have the consent of the instructor. The faculty advisor’s recommendation may be solicited as well.
Withdrawal from Course(s): After the add/drop period, students may withdraw with a grade of ‘W’ from a course through the ninth week of classes. The exact deadline is available on the semester combined calendar at https://www.wm.edu/offices/registrar/calendarsandexams/index.php. Students who withdraw from one or more courses must maintain a course load of at least 12 credits and must follow procedures established by the Office of the University Registrar. Students in their final undergraduate term, who have applied for graduation, may withdraw to below 12 credits, as long as they are enrolled in all classes required for their degree. This approved enrollment in fewer than 12 graded credits, is administered by the degree manager in the Office of the University Registrar.
No other withdrawals are permitted without the approval of the Committee on Academic Status. Petitions for late withdrawal will be approved only for extraordinary circumstances.
If a student is reported for an alleged honor violation that has occurred in an academic course, the student will not be permitted to withdraw from the course after the date of the alleged act if the Honor Council ultimately finds the student responsible for the violation. Exceptions may be granted by the Committee on Academic Status.
Withdrawal from the University: A student who desires to withdraw completely from the university after the semester begins must apply to the Dean of Students Office for permission to withdraw and complete the withdrawal acknowledgment form before the end of the ninth week of the semester. After the ninth week, withdrawal is allowed only for extenuating circumstances as determined by the Committee on Academic Status. Students who wish to withdraw after the deadline should consult with the Dean of Students Office. Students may provide either oral or written notification of the intent to withdraw, but must also complete the application for withdrawal process to formally withdraw. Failure to be officially withdrawn can result in grades of ‘F’ for all courses carried in that semester. Students who withdraw from the university in the first five full weeks of the semester are generally eligible for a partial refund of tuition and fees. Students on financial aid should always consult with the Office of Financial Aid, and students using VA benefits should always consult with the Office of the University Registrar, before withdrawing. Questions about refunds should be directed to the Office of the Bursar. For information regarding refund deadlines see Tuition and Other Expenses, Withdrawal Schedule .
Students who wish to withdraw from the university for the upcoming semester must complete the withdrawal form with the Dean of Students Office prior to the beginning of that semester. Such action results in cancellation of registration and housing for the following semester. It also assures that no charges will be assessed for the following term.
Medical Withdrawal from the University: Students unable to complete the requirements for registered classes in a semester due to medical or mental health reasons may petition for a full medical withdrawal from the university before the last day of classes through the Dean of Students Office. The Medical Review Committee (a sub-committee of the Committee on Academic Status) reviews this request and supporting documentation. If approved, the full medical withdrawal does not count towards the university’s 10 semester rule. Such action results in cancellation of registration and housing for the following semester.
Re-enrollment following a full medical withdrawal is not automatic and involves a clearance procedure which includes submission by the student of all necessary documentation addressing the behaviors or conditions which caused the original withdrawal. The student is expected to begin the clearance process not later than July 15 for Fall Semester, November 15 for Spring Semester, and April 15 for Summer Session. Reenrollment may be contingent upon additional restrictions or requirements for the student’s safety and success.
Withdrawal from the University for Students Called to Active Duty in Service to the United States: The Dean of Students Office assists students called to active duty during or between semesters, or prior to matriculation at the university. A description of the options available and the tuition refund policy can be found at http://www.wm.edu/offices/deanofstudents/academicpolicies/activeduty/index.php.
Academic Suspension from the University: Students who fail to meet applicable probationary standards or continuance requirements will be suspended from the university. For details of requirements, see the Catalog section, “Continuance Standards.”
Re-enrollment to the University: Students who withdraw from the university for personal reasons (excluding academic suspension, medical withdrawals, or required withdrawals due to student code of conduct or honor violations) are eligible to apply for reenrollment through the Dean of Students Office. The deadlines for reenrollment are July 15 for the Fall Semester, April 15 for the Summer, and November 15 for the Spring Semester.
System of Grading
||Quality Points Per Credit Hour
||Used to Calculate GPA?
||Grade Not Reported by Instructor
||Indicates WRIT 101 course must be repeated
Grade Point Average (GPA): William & Mary uses a four point grading system. A student’s GPA is calculated by dividing the sum of earned quality points by the sum of attempted hours for all courses receiving a grade used in calculating the GPA. The grade point average is reported to two decimals without rounding. Only coursework taken at W&M is used in the GPA calculation.
Repeated Courses: Certain courses are specifically designated in the university catalog as courses that may be repeated for credit. With the exception of these specially designated courses, no course in which a student receives a grade of “A”, “B”, “C”, “D”, “G”, “I” or “P” may be repeated except as an audit. Any course in which a student receives a grade of “F”, “R” or “W” may be repeated for a grade; if a course with a grade of “F” is repeated, both the original grade of “F” and the grade earned in the repeated course will be included in calculating the student’s Grade Point Average. Students are responsible for ensuring they do not register for a non-repeatable course more than once.
Incomplete Grades: An incomplete grade reflects an established arrangement between the instructor and the student around the completion of course requirements. The “I” grade indicates that an individual student has not completed essential course work because of illness or other extenuating circumstances. This includes absence from the final examination and postponement of required work with approval of the instructor. It is the student’s responsibility to make arrangements with the instructor to complete the work by a specified date (first full week of the upcoming semester for deferred examinations).
A grade of “I” automatically becomes “F” if the work is not completed by the last day of classes of the following regular semester, or if the postponed work has not been completed satisfactorily by the date specified by the professor. Incomplete grades granted because of a deferred exam should be changed early in the following semester. The instructor may grant a one-semester extension under exceptional circumstances; after this extension, the “I” reverts to an “F” if sufficient work is not completed to warrant assignment of another letter grade by the instructor.
Students carrying three or more “I” grades may register for no more than 16 credit hours per term. A degree will not be conferred if an incomplete (“I”) grade is on the student’s record.
Pass/Fail: Actively enrolled Bachelor’s degree-seeking undergraduate students may select up to four standard-grade elective courses in Arts & Sciences and Education as Pass/Fail. This selection occurs when a student is a social Junior or Senior. A maximum of two courses may change to Pass/Fail from any one semester. Up to two of the four Pass/Fail selections may be applied retroactively to courses that have already received a letter grade at any time during the student’s enrollment at William & Mary. The remainder must be selected by the published deadline of the current semester.
The selection of any retroactive Pass/Fail grades must occur by the published deadline of the student’s last semester. The published deadlines shall not be earlier than the withdrawal deadline in the given semester.
A student’s decision to designate courses as Pass/Fail is irrevocable. For this reason, when changing a graded course to a Pass, students are required to consult with their Major Advisor or Department Chair/Program Director.
The following guidelines apply to Pass/Fail designations:
- COLL curriculum requirements, proficiency requirements (Arts, Math, and Foreign Language), and Major/Minor course requirements are ineligible for Pass/ Fail.
- Pass/Fail courses count toward the minimum enrollment requirement of 12 credits, but do not count toward the 12-credit hour Dean’s List requirement. Retroactive grade changes could, therefore, result in a change to Dean’s List status for a prior semester.
- Students may not elect Pass/Fail when found responsible for an Honor Code violation in that course if the student receives a grade consequence because of the violation.
- A successful Pass will not count toward a student’s GPA. However, a Fail will count toward the GPA. Exceptions to this policy should be submitted to the Committee on Degrees.
For instructions on how to select Pass/Fail for a course via Banner Self Service, visit the University Registrar’s web site at http://www.wm.edu/registrar.
A student found responsible for an honor violation in an academic course is not permitted to make adjustments to the grading modality (i.e. convert the grade to pass/fail) of the course if the student receives a grade consequence as a result of the violation. Exceptions may be granted by the Committee on Academic Status.
Audit: Degree seeking students may audit a course after obtaining permission of the instructor on the Permission to Audit form, which is available at http://www.wm.edu/registrar. Students may not select a course for audit via web registration. Audited courses receive grades. If the student meets the requirements for auditors prescribed by the instructor, the course will be included on the transcript with the grade “O” (satisfactory audit). Where those requirements have not been met, the course will be included on the transcript with the grade “U” (unsatisfactory audit). No credit nor quality points are earned. Audits do not count toward the 12 earned credit hour minimum required for undergraduate students.
Class Rank: William & Mary does not calculate nor report class rank for undergraduate students.
Grade Review Procedures
A student who believes that a final course grade has been unfairly assigned may request a review of the grade by the end of the sixth week of the fall or spring semester that follows the semester or summer session for which the grade was recorded. The student must first discuss the grade with the instructor. If the instructor agrees that a grade change is warranted, the instructor will propose the new grade within one year of the issuance of the original grade to the appropriate dean for consideration and, if it is approved, the new grade will be entered on the student’s record. No grades will be changed more than one year after initial issuance or after a student’s degree is conferred, whichever comes first. If, after the discussion between instructor and student, the issue has not been resolved, the student must file a formal written statement requesting a grade review and give a full explanation of the reasons for the request. The student must send the statement to the instructor and to the chair of the department or director of the program in which the course was taught. If the student is not satisfied with the outcome of the chair’s or director’s review, the next step to be taken differs by School. For Arts and Sciences courses, students should consult the assistant dean for undergraduate academic affairs in Arts & Sciences; for Business courses, students should consult the BBA program director; for Education courses, students should consult the Dean of the School of Education.
The Dean’s List refers to those full-time degree-seeking undergraduate students who have completed at least 12 (standard letter graded, not including “P” or “G”) credit hours and earned a 3.6 Grade Point Average in one semester. Courses taken on a pass/fail or audit basis do not count in the minimum 12 credit hours. This recognition is noted on the student’s academic transcript.
In order to graduate, students must have completed 120 credits in academic subjects with a grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 both overall and in their major. After each semester of full-time enrollment, the student must meet the minimum levels of academic progress established by the university and applied by the Committee on Academic Status. The minimum requirements for continuance for undergraduates are the following cumulative grade points and credits earned at William & Mary, including grade point and credits earned at William & Mary summer school:
|Semester at W&M
||W&M Cumulative GPA
||W&M Cumulative Credits
The following regulations apply to the University’s Continuance policy:
- Only William & Mary credit will count in determining whether students are meeting Continuance Standards. Transfer, Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) credit will not count for this purpose, although as specified by regulations in the Catalog these credits may count toward 120 credits required for graduation and toward general education and major requirements.
- Transfer students as well as freshmen begin at the university under the Continuance Standards for semester 1 in the above table.
- Students whose GPA falls below 2.0 in any semester will be placed on Academic Warning.
- Students whose academic work falls below the minimum GPA and/or earned credit Continuance Standards will be placed on academic probation for the following semester.
- Students on academic probation may not enroll in more than 16 credit hours per semester. Students who are on academic probation may not receive any incompletes for coursework during the semester(s) of probation.
- While on academic probation, students must earn a 2.0 semester GPA or better and pass at least 12 credits. Failure to do so will result in academic suspension.
- Students on academic probation must participate in the ASPIRE Program administered by the Dean of Students Office during their probationary semester. Students on probation also must meet with their Academic Advisor before registering for the subsequent semester. Registration for the following semester will not be permitted until these requirements are met.
- Students on academic probation have two regular semesters to bring their academic work up to or beyond the Continuance Standards so long as they earn a 2.0 and pass at least 12 credits each semester. If they are unsuccessful in meeting or surpassing the Continuance Standards during their first probation semester, they remain on probation during the second semester.
- Students who are placed on academic probation or are continuing on academic probation at the end of a semester but earned at least a 2.0 GPA and 12 credits during that semester will be removed from academic probation if they meet their Continuance Standards by the end of summer school. This applies only for work at W&M summer school. Determination of eligibility for removal from academic probation will be done at the end of that summer school.
- Students who do not meet the conditions for academic probation will be academically suspended from the university for academic deficiencies. Those suspended for academic deficiencies are not in good standing with the university and are not automatically eligible for reenrollment. The Dean of Students Office will not process an application for reenrollment from a student who has been academically suspended unless the student has been reinstated to good standing by the Committee on Academic Status.
- Students may petition the Committee on Academic Status for individual exceptions to the above Continuance Standards.
- The university does not grant academic credit for coursework taken elsewhere while the student is not in good academic standing.
- An unclassified student enrolled for 12 or more academic hours must meet the Continuance Standards applicable to the regularly enrolled student.
Continuance Standards for Flexible Track (FlexTrack) Degree-Seeking Students: The minimum requirements for Continuance for flexible track students are as follows:
- A minimum of 12 credits must be passed in a 12 month period.
- Students must complete within 10 years all degree requirements in effect at the time of entrance and all major requirements in effect at the time of the declaration of major.
- The Ten Semester Rule applies to all FlexTrack students.
- A 1.7 cumulative GPA must be achieved by the end of the term in which nine credits have been completed.
- A 1.7 cumulative GPA must be achieved by the end of the term in which 21 credits have been completed.
- A 1.85 cumulative GPA must be achieved by the end of the term in which 33 credits have been completed.
- A 2.0 cumulative GPA must be achieved by the end of the term in which 48 credits have been completed.
- A 2.0 cumulative GPA must be achieved by the end of each term of enrollment after 48 credits have been completed.
Reinstatement to Good Standing
Students who have been academically suspended and are not in good academic standing with the university, but who wish to seek reenrollment to William & Mary, must submit a petition for reinstatement to the Committee on Academic Status. Petitions should be made in advance of the semester of intended return (July 15 for Fall, November 15 for Spring, or April 15 for Summer). For information on specific procedures, contact the Dean of Students Office. Reinstatement and reenrollment to the university are not automatic, but at the end of certain specified periods the student is eligible to seek these considerations from the Committee on Academic Status and the Dean of Students Office, respectively. A student who is suspended in January for academic deficiency may apply no earlier than April of the same year for reinstatement and reenrollment for Fall. A student who is suspended in May is eligible to apply no earlier than October for reinstatement and reenrollment to be effective in the Spring semester. It is extremely unlikely that a student who is suspended twice from the university for academic deficiencies by the Committee on Academic Status will ever be reinstated.
Religious Accommodations Guidelines
William & Mary urges its administrators, faculty members, and staff to be sensitive to the religious holidays of organized religions. All persons should be able to participate in the essential practices of their faith without conflict with academic requirements, as long as such practices are in accordance with state and federal regulations and consistent with safety regulations of the university. The university offers the following guidelines:
- As soon as possible and no later than the end of the drop/add period, each student has the responsibility to inform their instructor of religious observances that are likely to conflict directly with classes and other required academic activities. Each student has the responsibility to arrange their course schedule to minimize conflicts. It is understood that when scheduling options exist for religious observances, the student has the responsibility to minimize conflicts.
- Based upon prior agreement between the instructor and student, a student who misses a class meeting because of a scheduling conflict with religious observances should be allowed, whenever possible, to complete without penalty the work missed because of such absences. A student who is absent from a test or presentation because of the observance of a religious holiday should be able to reschedule it without penalty. Absence from a final examination requires that the examination be rescheduled through the established process for rescheduling of final examinations by the Dean of Students Office. Graduate students should contact the Dean of the School or their designee.
- If a scheduling conflict with a student’s planned absence cannot be resolved between the instructor and the student, undergraduates should inform the department chair or program director, who will follow the established procedure for a class absence. Graduate students should contact the Dean of the School or his or her designee.
- Faculty members and administrators in charge of scheduling campus-wide events should avoid conflicts with religious holidays as much as possible.