Policies and Procedures
The standards herein are applicable to all undergraduate students at the University
and constitute the basic authority and reference for matters pertaining to University
academic regulations and records management. Enrollment in the University is a
declaration of acceptance of all University rules and regulations.
Confidentiality of Education Records
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 is a federal law that
grants to students the right to inspect, obtain copies of, challenge, and, to a degree,
control the release of information contained in his or her education records. The
act and regulations are very lengthy, and for that reason SMU has issued guidelines
that are available at the University Registrarís FERPA Web site (http://smu.edu/
ferpa/). Policy 1.18 of the University Policy Manual, accessible at http://smu.edu/
policy/, also discusses this law.
In general, no personally identifiable information from a studentís education
record will be disclosed to any third party without written consent from the student.
Several exceptions exist, including these selected examples: (1) Information defined
by SMU as directory information may be released unless the student requests
through Access.SMU Self Service that it be withheld; (2) Information authorized
by the student through Access.SMU Self-Service may be released to those individuals
designated by the student; and (3) Information may be released to a parent
or guardian if the student is declared financially dependent upon the parent or
guardian as set forth in the Internal Revenue Code. For more information, visit
When students enter their school of record and into a specific degree program,
they are assigned an academic adviser. Students should consult with the adviser
for course scheduling, schedule changes, petitions, degree requirements and other
such academic concerns. Advisers normally will have established office hours.
The Offices of the Academic Deans monitor progress and maintain official degree
plans for all students in their schools. Students should schedule conferences with
staff in the deanís office upon admission to the school and prior to their final term
to ensure that they are meeting all general education and graduation
The fall, spring and summer terms each have an enrollment period during which
the formal process of enrollment in the University is completed. Prior to each
enrollment period, the University registrar will publish enrollment instructions.
To assist new and readmitted students in making a comfortable, satisfying transition
to University academic life, programs of academic advising, enrollment and
orientation are conducted in May or June, July, August and January. Information
concerning the programs is distributed by the Office of New Student Programs.
Each student is personally responsible for complying with enrollment procedures
and for the accuracy of his or her enrollment.
Students are expected to confirm
the accuracy of their enrollment each term. Students who discover a discrepancy
in their enrollment records after the close of enrollment for the term should immediately
complete an Enrollment Discrepancy Petition. Petition instructions are
available on the Web at www.smu.edu/registrar. Petitions are to be submitted to
the record offices of the appropriate academic deans within six months of the term
in which the discrepancy appeared. Petitions submitted later than six months after
the discrepancy may not be considered.
Academic Advising Policy
Academic advising is an important process for each undergraduate student at
SMU. All students must meet with their assigned academic adviser prior to enrolling
for an academic term. At this time, the adviser will assist students in planning
majors and minors, understanding their Degree Progress Reports and scheduling
courses that will count towards their graduation requirements. After the initial
required advising session, students are encouraged to seek assistance from their
adviser when considering adding or dropping courses.
For an effective advising relationship, students must be prepared when meeting
with their adviser. The student must initiate the advising appointment. Prior to the
meeting, the student should obtain a Degree Progress Report through Access.SMU
that provides detailed information concerning completion of degree requirements,
and be familiar with different academic programs of interest. The adviser will give
assistance to the student, but students have the final responsibility for the accuracy
of their enrollment, the applicability of their courses towards their degree requirements,
and their academic performance.
Students are assigned an academic adviser by their academic dean. Students
who enroll without first meeting with their assigned academic adviser may be
subject to sanctions including, but not limited to, the following: cancellation of the
term enrollment and restriction from the self-service enrollment functions.
Student File Number
A studentís SMU identification number is an eight-digit number assigned by the
University. The SMU ID number should be furnished on all forms when requested,
as it is the primary means for identifying the studentís academic records and
transactions related to the records.
Stop Enrollment/Administrative Withdrawal
Insufficient or improper information given by the student on any admission or
enrollment form, or academic deficiencies, disciplinary actions and financial
obligations to the University, can constitute cause for the student to be determined
ineligible to enroll or to be administratively withdrawn.
Transfer Courses From Other Institutions
Once students have matriculated at SMU, they may transfer no more than 30
hours to SMU from accredited colleges and universities. To ensure that a course
taken at another college or university will transfer and that proper credit will be
awarded, the student taking the course should obtain prior approval from the following
people: the chair of the department and academic dean of the school at
SMU that normally offers the course, the adviser and the studentís academic dean.
Petitions for pre-approval of transfer work are available in the schoolsí records
offices. Students who fail to get prior approval for transfer work may petition later
for transfer credit, but they have no assurance that it will be awarded. In either
case, permission may be denied for educational reasons.
Official college transcripts are required for all college-level work attempted,
regardless of transferability. Students are responsible for making sure a transcript
of all transfer work attempted is sent to the University registrar immediately following
completion of the work.
Students who complete more than 30 transferable hours after matriculating can
designate which of their courses apply to the 30-hour limit. Students may change
the designation of the courses. Students should make these transfer credit designations
in consultation with their records offices.
Credit may be awarded for college courses a student takes prior to matriculation
at SMU, including courses a student takes before graduating from high school, if
they meet the criteria for transfer work outlined in the Transfer Admission Criteria
section of this catalog. Credit may be denied for educational reasons.
University policy requires that of the 122 minimum required term hours for a
degree, at least 60 hours must be earned in residence at SMU. The 60-hour residency
requirement refers to the number of academic hours completed as SMU course
enrollments at the SMU Main Campus, SMU-in-Legacy, SMU-in-Taos, at an SMU
education abroad program, and at other approved SMU locations; and, test and other
credits awarded by SMU departments as SMU courses. Nonresidency hours are
recorded as transfer credits.
Therefore, regardless of the number of transferable credits completed elsewhere,
to receive an SMU degree, students need to earn 60 credit hours in residence at
SMU. For further degree requirements, please refer to the individual school sections
of this catalog.
A student who has a change in name must provide his or her Social Security card
or the form issued by the Social Security Administration. Enrollment or records
services for the student under a name different from the last enrollment cannot be
accomplished without the above documents. All grade reports, transcripts and diplomas
are issued only under a personís legal name as recorded by the University registrar.
Mailing Addresses, Telephone, E-mail Address and Emergency Contact
Each student must provide the University registrar with a current home address,
telephone number, a local mailing address as well as the name, address and telephone
number of a designated emergency contact. Students enrolling at SMU
authorize the University to notify their emergency contacts in the event of a situation
affecting their health, safety or physical or mental well being, and to provide
these contacts with information related to the situation.
Undergraduate students are also required to provide their parentsí current home
addresses and telephone numbers. Students who are independent may file an
exception to the parent requirement by contacting the University registrar.
Students are expected to keep current all their addresses and telephone numbers,
including emergency contact details through Access.SMU, the Universityís webbased
self-service system. Changes to parent information should be reported on
the web form found at www.smu.edu/registrar. Students may be prevented from
enrolling if their information is insufficient or not current.
The University issues all students an e-mail address. Students may have other
e-mail addresses, but the University-assigned e-mail address is the official address
for University electronic correspondence, including related communications with
faculty members and academic units (except for distance education students).
Official University correspondence may be sent to studentsí mailing addresses
or SMU e-mail addresses on file. It is the responsibility of students to keep all
their addresses current and to regularly check communications sent to them as
they are responsible for complying with requests, deadlines and other requirements
sent to any of their mailing addresses on file or to their SMU e-mail.
The University requests that students provide cellular telephone numbers as they
are one means of communicating with students during an emergency. Cellular telephone
numbers may also be used by University officials conducting routine business.
Students who do not have cellular telephones or do not wish to report the numbers
may declare this information in lieu of providing cellular telephone numbers. However,
students may be prevented from enrolling if their cellular telephone numbers
are not on file or if they have not declared ďno cellular telephoneĒ or ďdo not wish
to report cellular number.Ē
A transcript is an official document of the permanent academic record maintained
by the University registrar. The permanent academic record includes all SMU
courses attempted, all grades assigned, degrees received and a summary of transfer
hours accepted. Official transcripts and certifications of student academic records
are issued by the University registrar for all students of the University. Copies of
high school records and transfer transcripts from other schools must be requested
from the institutions where the coursework was taken.
Transcripts are $11.25 per copy. Additional copies in the same request mailed
to the same address are $3. Additional copies mailed to different addresses are
$11.25 a copy. Requests may be delayed due to outstanding financial or other
obligations or for posting of a grade change, an earned degree or term grades.
Transcripts should be requested on-line at www.smu.edu/registrar. Once on the
registrarís page click on Transcript Requests and follow the instructions. Your
request will be processed through the National Student Clearing House. Telephone
and e-mail requests are not accepted. Students may pick up their transcripts in
person at the Registrarís Service Counter, 101 Blanton Building. No partial or
incomplete transcripts including only certain courses or grades are issued. Transcripts
cannot be released unless the student has satisfied all financial and other
obligations to the University.
SMU is permitted, but not required, to disclose to parents of a student, information
contained in the education records of the student if the student is a dependent
as defined in the Internal Revenue Code.
Transcripts may be released to a third party as specified by the student on the
Studentís Consent for SMU to Release Information to Studentís Specified Third
Party form accessible at http://smu.edu/registrar/ferpa/forms.asp.
*Chapter 675, S.B. 302. Acts of the 61st Texas Legislature, 1969 Regular Session, provides:
Section I. No person may buy, sell, create, duplicate, alter, give or obtain; or attempt to
buy, sell, create, duplicate, alter, give or obtain a diploma, certificate, academic record,
certificate of enrollment or other instrument which purports to signify merit or achievement
conferred by an institution of education in this state with the intent to use fraudulently such
document or to allow the fraudulent use of such document.
Mandatory Declaration of Major
Section II. A person who violates this act or who aids another in violating this act is guilty
of a misdemeanor and upon conviction is punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000 and/
or confinement in the county jail for a period not to exceed one year.
Students officially declare their major when they have made a firm choice and
when they have met the specific program entrance requirements for their intended
school and department. For most students, the declaration of the major occurs in
the sophomore year. Students are expected to qualify for and to declare a major
no later than upon completion of 75 term hours, including credits by examination
and transfer credits, in order to continue their studies at SMU.
Change of Academic Program
Undergraduate students who desire to change their academic program Ė that is,
transfer from one school to another within the University, change their degree objective, change their major or change their minor Ė first should apply to the
academic deanís office of the school in which they are currently enrolled. Students
can change their academic program at any time during a term. The program change
is effective on the date received, approved and processed. However, changes should
be made at least three weeks prior to enrollment for a term for the change to be
effective for that enrollment.
A part-time student who wishes to transfer from the Annette Caldwell Simmons
School of Education and Human Development to an undergraduate program offered
by Dedman College, Cox School of Business, Lyle School of Engineering or Meadows
School of the Arts must meet all standard University admission requirements.
Concurrent Degree Programs
Students can simultaneously earn two degrees from two schools of the University
with approval of the academic dean of each school. The requirements for each
degree must be met. Students should meet with advisers in both schools at an early
date to prepare a proposed plan of study and to complete the processing of all
The deadline for adding courses, dropping courses without grade record, and
changing sections for each enrollment period is listed in the Official University
Calendar. Students are encouraged to seek assistance from their advisers when
considering whether to add or drop a course. A student may drop a course with a
grade of W (withdrew) through approximately midterm by using the student Access.
SMU Self-Service. The specific deadline is listed in the Official University Calendar
After the deadline date in the Official University Calendar, the student may not drop
a class. All schedule changes must be processed by the deadline date specified in the
Official University Calendar. Schedule changes are not complete for official University
record purposes unless finalized in the Office of the University Registrar.
A student who wishes to withdraw (resign) from the University before the end
of a term or session must initiate a Student Petition for Withdrawal form through
his/her academic dean/records office. The petition will be forwarded to the Division
of Enrollment Services-University Registrar. The effective date of the withdrawal
is the date on which the Student Petition for Withdrawal is processed in
the Registrarís Office. Discontinuance of class attendance or notification to the
instructors of intention to withdraw does not constitute an official withdrawal.
Reduction of tuition and fees is based on the schedule listed in the publication
Financial Information: Southern Methodist University,
which is found at www.
and is determined by the effective date of the withdrawal. This
information is also available online at www.smu.edu/registrar.
financial aid should refer to the Financial Information section of the catalog.
The enrollment of students who withdraw on or before the fifth day of regular
classes as listed in the Official University Calendar will be canceled. Courses and
grades are not recorded for canceled enrollments. A student who withdraws after
the fifth class day will receive the grade of W
in each course in which enrolled.
Medical withdrawals provide a daily pro rata refund of tuition and fees, and
have conditions that must be met prior to re-enrollment at SMU. Medical withdrawals
must be authorized by the Medical Director; Psychiatric Director; Counseling
and Psychiatric Services Director; Dean of Student Life; or Vice President for
Student Affairs. Authorization must be obtained no later than the Universityís
withdrawal date for the term.
Students who live in University housing must obtain clearance from the Office
Leave of Absence
The SMU Leave of Absence (LOA) Policy provides students with a formal
process to ďstop outĒ of SMU for either voluntary or involuntary reasons. A leave
of absence is generally a temporary departure from the institutionĖ a ďtime outĒ
which may be necessary during a studentís undergraduate career. However, permanent
withdrawals from SMU will also be processed under the Leave of Absence
Policy. In addition, students who participate in study-away programs that do not
fall under the auspices of SMU should also complete the Leave of Absence form.
The completion of this process helps all respective offices at SMU monitor a
studentís leave and have a formal centralized record of the status for all students
who are not currently enrolled.
Students may elect to take leaves of absence for a variety of reasons, including:
medical reasons due to accident or illness; family crises or some other personal
situation that requires them to be away from school for some period of time;
financial issues which may take time to resolve; and, academic difficulties which
may best be handled by taking time to refocus on college work.
Typically, a leave of absence is for one semester or one academic year. A leave may
be extended by contacting the studentís academic department representative. The
process to return to SMU after a leave of absence period is not difficult if a student
has gone through the steps to file for a leave of absence and plans ahead for his/her
return. Following these guidelines helps assure that: degree requirements outlined in
the catalog of record when a student initially matriculated at SMU still apply on his/
her return; financial aid processing is in place; and, support a student needs to successfully return to SMU and finish his/her undergraduate degree is available.
Students planning a leave of absence should first arrange an appointment to meet
with their academic adviser who will assist with this process. The Leave of Absence
form, policy and manual are also located online at www.smu.edu/registrar.
Audit Enrollment (Course Visitor)
Students desiring to audit (visit) a class, whether or not concurrently enrolled
for regular coursework, are required to process an Audit Enrollment Request form.
Forms are available on the Web at www.smu.edu/registrar under Forms Library.
Space must be available in the class. The following regulations are applicable:
Enrollment for No-Credit
Enrollment for ďno-creditĒ is accomplished in the conventional manner of
enrollment, with regular admission and enrollment procedures being required.
The student pays the regular tuition and fees, participates in class activities, is
listed on class rolls, and receives the grade of NC upon completion of the coursework.
The student must indicate in writing no later than the 12th day of classes
(the fourth day during summer sessions) that he or she wishes to take a course for
No-Credit. Permission of the instructor or department is required for this type of
enrollment. This enrollment is different from audit enrollments, for which no
enrollment or grade is recorded.
Academic Progress: Probation, Suspension, Reinstatement, Dismissal
The Universityís goal for, and expectation of, all undergraduate students is that
they make regular and satisfactory progress towards their degree. There are three
classifications that may apply when an undergraduate student is not making satisfactory
academic progress: (1) Academic Probation; (2) Academic Suspension;
or (3) Academic Dismissal. This policy sets out the standards and procedures for
each of these classifications. In addition, a student who has been suspended may
seek Academic Reinstatement under the standards set out in this policy.
Definitions: Academic Probation, Academic Suspension, Academic Reinstatement
and Academic Dismissal
Academic Probation is a serious warning that the student is not making satisfactory
academic progress. A student on Academic Probation is still eligible to enroll,
and is considered ďin good standingĒ for enrolling in classes and for certification
purposes. In addition, Academic Probation is not noted in the permanent academic
record. However, a student on Academic Probation may be subject to certain conditions
during the period of probation, and will also be subject to Academic Suspension
if he or she does not clear Academic Probation within the appropriate time
period (usually by the end of the next term).
Academic Suspension is an involuntary separation of the student from SMU.
Academic Suspension is for at least one regular term. The term of suspension might
be for a longer period depending on the policy of the school of record or the terms
of the individual studentís suspension.
The status of Academic Suspension is recorded on the permanent academic
record. While on Academic Suspension, a student is not in good academic standing
for certification purposes and is not eligible to enroll as a student.
Credits earned at another college or university during a term of suspension may
not be applied toward an SMU degree. A grade-point deficiency must be made up
in residence at SMU.
A student who has been on Academic Suspension once may apply for reinstatement
to SMU. If reinstated, the student may enroll in classes and is considered in good
academic standing for purposes of certification. A student who is reinstated remains
on Academic Probation until the conditions of Academic Probation are satisfied.
A second suspension that is final results in an academic dismissal from the University.
Academic Dismissal is final, with no possibility of reinstatement or readmission.
Academic Dismissal is recorded on the permanent academic record.
Probation and Suspension Rules Relating to General Education Requirements (Applicable to All Undergraduate Students)
Dedman College: Students With Undeclared Majors
For undeclared majors, a student will be placed on Academic Probation if the
studentís cumulative SMU G.P.A. is below 2.0 at the end of a regular term.
When the student is placed on Academic Probation because his or her cumulative
SMU G.P.A. is below 2.0, then the student will be assigned to a designated probation
counselor. Before beginning his or her next term at SMU, the student will be
required to complete a self-assessment and share this self-assessment with the
probation counselor, who will then work with each student to determine the appropriate
academic interventions. These academic interventions can include, but are
not limited to, the following:
The student will sign a contract that stipulates the agreed-upon academic
The student on Academic Probation has one, regular term in which to raise his or
her cumulative SMU G.P.A. to 2.0 or higher. If the student does not do so, the student
will be placed on Academic Suspension, subject to the following exception:
- A student may appeal to the University Academic Appeals Committee for a
second, consecutive probationary term if the term G.P.A. during the studentís
first probationary term indicates academic improvement and if the student has
undergone all academic recovery efforts agreed upon in the contract with the
If a student is placed on Academic Suspension, the period of Academic Suspension
is for a minimum of one regular term. Credits earned at another college or
university during a term of suspension may not be applied towards an SMU degree.
A grade-point deficiency must be made up at SMU.
As soon as possible after the student is placed on Academic Suspension, the
student should contact the probation counselor if the student has any desire or
intent to seek reinstatement after the period of Academic Suspension. The probation
counselor will work with the student to determine appropriate conditions that
the student should satisfy to be eligible for reinstatement. These conditions might
include the completion of coursework with a certain minimum G.P.A.
A student who has been academically suspended once may apply for academic
reinstatement to the University. A student is not eligible to request reinstatement
until the end of the time period of Academic Suspension. The request for reinstatement
should be submitted to University Academic Appeals Committee, which will
make a decision on the request. Ordinarily, the decision whether to grant reinstatement
shall be based primarily on whether the student has satisfied the conditions
set out for the period of Academic Suspension.
Dedman College: Declared Majors
Students in Dedman College with declared majors, including the Evening Studies
Program whose cumulative SMU grade point average (G.P.A.) falls below 2.0 are
placed on Academic Probation. Academic Probation is for a minimum of one regular
term (excluding interterms and summer terms). The dean may impose special
condi-tions in exceptional probationary situations. Students are removed from
probation status when they achieve a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.0 or higher.
Declared Dedman students who do not maintain a cumulative
grade point average of 2.0 or higher are placed on Academic Probation. They
are removed from Academic Probation status when they achieve a cumulative
G.P.A. of 2.0 or higher.
Declared Dedman students whose cumulative G.P.A.
remains below 2.0 in any regular term following a term of Academic Probation
will be suspended. Suspension is for a minimum of one term, not counting interterms
or summer sessions. Credits earned at another college or university during
a term of suspen-sion may not be applied toward an SMU degree. A grade-point
deficiency must be made up in residence at SMU.
Students who have been suspended from another school on campus are also
subject to suspension from Dedman College.
Reinstatement on Probation Following Suspension.
Students who have been
suspended once may apply for reinstatement to the University, but reinstatement
is not guaranteed. In certain cases, prescribed conditions, including the completion
of coursework elsewhere, must be met before a student will be approved for reinstatement.
Students who have been reinstated to the University following suspension
remain on probation and are normally allowed two regular terms within which to
make up their academic deficiencies and return to good standing. However, special
conditions for the first term may be set in individual cases.
A second suspension is final, resulting in dismissal from the University with no possibility of readmission.
Cox School of Business
A student will be placed on academic probation for one
term following the term in which the SMU term, cumulative or business G.P.A.
(minimum of nine credit hours) falls below 2.0. A student on probation may enroll
for a maximum of 12 hours, will not be allowed to enroll for an internship or
directed study, must meet with the BBA Director of Academic Advising or a designee
at appropriate intervals during the semester, to be determined by the Director,
and must attend the Altshuler Learning Enhancement Center (A-LEC) and follow
recommendations established by the A-LEC Director. Students who do not meet
the requirements of probation will not be removed from probation even if the G.P.A.
rises to 2.0 or above.
A student on academic probation who fails to maintain
an SMU term, cumulative or business G.P.A. (minimum of nine credit hours) of
2.0 will be suspended. A student who has been suspended must petition the director
of the B.B.A. Program of the Cox School for reinstatement, but this petition will
not be considered until the student has been suspended for at least one full term
(Summer terms excluded). For example, a student suspended at the end of the
Spring term may petition for reinstatement for the beginning of the next Spring
term, but no sooner. Petitions for reinstatement must set forth clearly the reasons
for the previous unsatisfactory academic record and must delineate the new conditions
that have been created to prevent the recurrence of such performance. Each
petition is considered individually on its own merits. After consideration of the
petition and perhaps after a personal interview, the student may be reinstated on
academic probation if the suspension was the studentís first. Reinstated students
will be required to meet with an Altshuler Learning Enhancement Center (A-LEC)
counselor during the first week of classes and follow through on recommendations
from that meeting.
A second suspension is final, resulting in dismissal from
the University with no possibility of readmission to the Cox School.
Failure at Other Colleges.
Students who are on academic probation or suspension
from other colleges will not be admitted to the Cox School of Business until they
are no longer on probation or suspension with their home school. Students who
have received academic suspension twice from any college or university will not
be admitted to the Cox School. Failure to disclose any such suspensions will be
grounds for dismissal from the Cox School.
Meadows School of the Arts
A student who fails to maintain a 2.0 cumulative or term
G.P.A. in a regular term will be placed on academic probation for the following
regular academic term. A student on academic probation may enroll for a maximum
of 13 term hours and must achieve a term and cumulative 2.0 G.P.A. at the end of
A student who fails to meet divisional artistic standards may be placed on artistic
probation at any time.
A student who fails to meet the terms of academic probation
will be suspended for one regular academic term, after which the student may
apply for readmission. A student may petition the Associate Dean for Student
Affairs for reconsideration and may be reinstated on academic probation.
A student who fails to meet divisional artistic standards may be suspended from
the division at any time.
A second suspension is final, resulting in dismissal from
the University with no possibility of readmission.
Lyle School of Engineering
A student may be placed on academic probation whose
term or cumulative G.P.A. falls below 2.0. The minimum period of probation is
one term or summer term, but the usual period is one academic year. The student
remains on probation until the overall G.P.A. is 2.0 or better or until he or she is
suspended. A student on probation may enroll in a maximum of 13 credit hours
per term during the term(s) of probation and is not allowed to serve as an officer
of any organization representing either the Lyle School of Engineering or SMU.
The student on probation may not participate in any extracurricular activities that
might interfere with or detract from academic efforts.
A student on probation who fails to maintain a G.P.A. of
at least 2.0 during an academic year will be suspended. A student who has been
suspended may petition the dean for reinstatement, but this petition will not be
considered until the student has been suspended for at least one full term. For example,
a student suspended at the end of the spring term may petition for reinstatement for
the beginning of the next spring term, but not sooner. Petitions for reinstatement
must set forth clearly the reasons for the previous unsatisfactory academic record
and must delineate the conditions that have been created to prevent recurrence of
such work. Each petition is considered individually on its own merits. After consideration
of the petition and perhaps after a personal interview, the student may be
reinstated on academic probation if the suspension was the studentís first.
A second suspension is final, resulting in dismissal from
the University with no possibility of readmission.
Regular class attendance is required. The instructor of each class announces at
the beginning of the course policies regarding the effect of class attendance on the
studentís standing in the course. These policies may include dropping a student
from the course for nonattendance after a certain number of absences. All reasons
for absence should be submitted at once to the instructor.
The satisfactory explanation of absence does not relieve a student from responsibility
for the work of the course during his or her absences. A student who misses
an announced test, examination or laboratory period in a regular course of study
and has the permission of the instructor may be given an opportunity to make up
the work at the instructorís convenience. The instructor determines in all instances
the extent to which absences and tardiness affect each studentís grade.
Students may be dropped by a course instructor or academic dean for nonattendance
or tardiness with a grade of W until the calendar deadline to drop. After
the deadline, students must remain enrolled in the course. Dedman students who
miss two successive class meetings during the official add-drop period at the
beginning of each term are subject to being dropped from the class. To avoid this
possibility, students should contact the instructor or the department concerned
immediately following such a series of absences.
A student who has a passing grade in a course at the time of the final examination
but misses the examination and satisfies the dean that the absence was unavoidable
may secure from the dean permission to take the examination at a time
convenient for the instructor.
Excused Absences for University Extracurricular Activities
Students who participate in officially sanctioned, scheduled University extracurricular
activities should be given an opportunity to make up class examinations or
other graded assignments that are missed as a result of this participation or related
travel. The manner in which examinations or other assignments missed as a result
of these activities are to be made up is left to the discretion of each individual
faculty member. However, students should not be penalized in any way for these
excused absences, and should be informed by the instructor at the beginning of
the term, preferably in writing, of the instructorís makeup policy. It is the responsibility
of the student to make arrangements with the instructor prior to any missed
scheduled examination or other missed assignment for making up this work, and
to obtain any class notes or other course material missed due to absence prior to
taking any subsequent examinations or submitting any subsequent graded
This statement of University policy applies for all students. In order to minimize
the difficulties caused for both student-athletes and their instructors by excused
absences due to University-sanctioned athletic activities or related travel, the
Athletic Department shall: 1) Make available to all student-athletes and their
academic advisers prior to registration a copy of the studentís activity and travel
schedule for the upcoming term, so as to facilitate the studentís enrollment in class
sections that will minimize activity and travel conflicts; and 2) Require all studentathletes
to provide a copy of that termís activity and travel schedule, and a copy of
this Statement of University Policy, to each of their instructors at the first class
meeting of the term.
Other University colleges and departments whose students also will miss classes
as a result of their participation in officially sanctioned, scheduled University
extracurricular activities or related travel also are encouraged to adopt similar
procedures to minimize the difficulties caused by such absences.
Absence Due to Illness
SMUís Memorial Health Center does not provide documentation for granting
excused absences from class. If students are absent for illness, they should talk to
their professors about how they might catch up with the material missed. If students
are seriously ill and require hospitalization or an extended absence, students should
talk to their professors and the Office of Student Life to decide how to deal with
the interruption in their studies. To facilitate communication about their absence
with their professors, students may submit an Absence from Class form available
on the Web at http://smu.edu/healthcenter/.
Classification of Students
A studentís classification is determined by the number of hours earned or the
degree-seeking status of the student:
The unit of measure for the valuation of courses is the term ďhour,Ē i.e., one
lecture hour or three laboratory hours per week for a term of approximately 16
weeks (including final examinations). Usually each lecture presupposes a minimum
of two hours of preparation on the part of students. Most courses are valued for
three term credit hours, i.e. three lecture hours per week and an additional six
hours of presumed preparation.
load in the fall, spring and summer terms is 12 hours for undergraduates.
Persons who enroll for fewer than these minimum hours are designated part-time
students. The normal undergraduate enrollment for each of the regular terms is 15
term hours. An undergraduate student enrolled in an Engineering Co-op course or
enrolled for six hours of student teaching is considered a full-time student.
Federal financial aid and some other outside agencies require
12 hours of enrollment for full-time status and do not make exceptions for co-op
or student teaching enrollments. Students on financial aid should consult a Financial
Aid adviser regarding minimum enrollment requirements for their situation.
Minimum and maximum course loads allowed are based on the school of record:
Premajors or majors in Dedman College must have the approval
of the dean to enroll for more than 18 credit hours. For Evening Studies: Students
must have the approval of the dean to enroll for more than nine credit hours.
Cox School of Business.
B.B.A. students may enroll for more than 18 hours per
term provided their cumulative grades (SMU, all college and Cox G.P.A.s are 2.0
or above) show satisfactory progress toward completion of the degree.
Meadows School of the Arts.
Students are not permitted to enroll during a fall
or spring term for more than 18 hours, unless the G.P.A. for the preceding term is
at least 3.0.
During the term in which a student is to graduate, he or she may enroll for 19
hours (nine hours for a summer term) regardless of the preceding term G.P.A.
Regardless of the status of a student, credit will not be allowed for more than 21
term hours in a term. A student with less than a 2.0 G.P.A. for the preceding term
will not be permitted to enroll for more than 13 hours.
Lyle School of Engineering.
Students must have the approval of the Office of
Undergraduate Studies to enroll for fewer than 12 hours or more than 18 hours
during a fall or spring term. Normally, a student must have a G.P.A. of 3.0 or
higher to enroll for more than 18 hours. An exception is made during the term in
which a student is to graduate. Credit will not be allowed for more than 21 hours
in a term.
Final course examinations shall be given in all courses where they are appropriate,
must be administered as specified in the official examination schedule, and
shall not be administered during the last week of classes. Exceptions to the examination
schedule may be made only upon written recommendation of the chair of
the department sponsoring the course and concurrence of the dean of that school,
who will allow exceptions only in accordance with guidelines from the Office of
The grade of a student in any course is determined by the instructor of the course.
The following grades are authorized for recording on the studentís official undergraduate
academic record maintained by the University registrar.
*Grades not included in grade-point average.
A student may receive a grade of Incomplete (I) if at least 50 percent of the course
requirements have been completed with passing grades but for some justifiable reason,
acceptable to the instructor, the student has been unable to complete the full requirements
of the course. At the time an I is given, the instructor must stipulate in writing
to the student and to the University registrar the requirements and completion date
that are to be met and the grade that will be given if the requirements are not met by
the completion date. The maximum period of time allowed to clear the Incomplete
grade for an undergraduate course is 12 months. If the Incomplete grade is not cleared
by the date set by the instructor or by the end of the 12-month deadline, the I will be
changed to the grade provided by the instructor at the time the Incomplete was assigned
or to an F if no alternate grade was provided.
The grade of I is not given in lieu of an
F or W, or other grade, each of which is prescribed for other specific circumstances.
If the studentís work is incomplete and the quality has not been passing, an F will be
given. The grade of I does not authorize a student to attend the course during a later
term. Graduation candidates must clear all Incompletes prior to the deadline in the
Official University Calendar, which may allow less time than 12 months. Failure to
do so can result in removal from the degree candidacy list and/or conversion of the I
to the grade indicated by the instructor at the time the I was given.
A failure is graded F. After such a grade, credit may be obtained only by repeating
The grade of D represents performance below average expectations. Students
receiving a D in a course that is a prerequisite to another course should consult
with their adviser about repeating the course so they will be adequately prepared
for work in the following course.
The grade of W cannot be recorded unless completion of official drop or withdrawal
process has occurred by the applicable deadline during the term of enrollment.
Only the grade of W may be recorded if the student has officially dropped courses from the schedule or withdrawn (resigned) from the University. The grade
of W may not be revoked or changed to another grade, as the act of officially dropping/
withdrawing is irrevocable.
The studentís grades are available to the student through Access.SMU.
Students may take one course per term on a pass/fail basis. The maximum total
credits with a grade of pass that may count toward a degree is 12 hours.
A student must indicate intention to take a course pass/fail no later than the 12th
day of classes (the fourth day in summer terms) by filing a form available in the
Office of the Academic Dean. After the 12th day of classes (the fourth day in
summer terms), students may not change their pass/fail declaration back to a letter
grade. If a course is graded pass/fail for all students by departmental policy, a
declaration by the student is not required. A failed course cannot be repeated on
a pass/fail basis, except for those courses designated as pass/fail-only courses.
Students should consult with their advisers before declaring the pass/fail option
for any course, as some courses may not be taken pass/fail. In general, elective
courses may be taken on a pass/fail basis. With the exception of CHOICES for
Living (Wellness), courses required to fulfill the General Education Curriculum
(GEC) may not be taken pass/fail. Courses in the academic majors and minors
also are excluded, but in some programs courses may be taken pass/fail after the
minimum program requirements have been met. (There may be other courses
required to meet certain professional accreditation standards or entrance requirements,
such as teacher accreditation and preprofessional studies, that may not be
taken pass/fail by a particular student. The departments or advisers concerned
with these requirements will make these exclusions known to the students.)
Business students may elect the pass/fail option in business elective courses only
after satisfactory completion of the previous term, including completion of 48 hours
of business courses taken on a regular letter-grade basis, as well as all requirements
of the studentís declared major. The exception to this are courses within Cox that
are designated as pass/fail only.
Under the pass/fail option, pass (P) grades are A, B and C (including C-); failure
(F) grades are D and F. A student who declares pass/fail is not entitled to know the
regular letter grade, and a pass/fail grade cannot be changed to a regular letter grade
(or vice versa) after the pass/fail grade has been assigned. The grade of P is not calculated
in the grade-point average, although the credit hours are included in the total
number of hours earned. The grade F is calculated in the grade-point average.
This average is computed by multiplying the term hours of each course attempted
by the grade points earned in the particular course and then dividing the total
number of grade points by the total number of hours attempted, excluding those
hours for which grades are shown with an asterisk on the grade chart. The gradepoint
average is truncated at three decimal places.
Changes of Grades
Changes of grades, including change of the grade of I, are initiated by the course
instructor and authorized by the academic chair and by the academic dean of the
school in which the course was offered. If a student requests a grade change, the
instructor may ask the student to provide a written petition requesting the change of
grade which may become an official part of any further process at the instructorís
discretion. Changes of grades may be made only for the following authorized reasons:
to clear a grade of I; to correct a processing error; or, to reflect a reevaluation of the studentís original work. A change of grade will not be based on additional work
options beyond those originally made available to the entire class.
Changes of grades of I should be processed within a calendar year of the original
grade assignment. Other changes in grade must be processed by the end of the next
regular term. No grade will be changed after 12 months or after a studentís graduation
except a grade successfully appealed, provided that written notice of appeal
is given within six months following graduation, and in extenuating circumstances
authorized by the academic dean and approved by the registrar.
Grades for Repeated Courses
Students who enter the University directly from high school may repeat up to
three courses for which grades of D+ or lower were received, provided these
courses were completed before or during a studentís first two consecutive regular
terms following matriculation (regardless of the studentís enrollment or withdrawal).
ďCollege PrepĒ courses completed a summer prior to matriculation are
NOT eligible to be repeated under this rule. The grade from the repeated course,
even if lower, will be the grade used to calculate the studentís grade-point average.
A course may be repeated only once under this policy, and it must be repeated
within the next two regular terms (regardless of the studentís terms of enrollment
or withdrawal, but not counting a term of academic suspension) following the term
in which the course was initially taken. Exceptions to the two-term restriction may
be requested from the University registrar if the course is not taught again within
that period. The student must declare which courses he or she will repeat under
this policy with his or her academic dean by the 12th day of classes. Only the
repeated course and not the initial credit hours count toward the number needed
for graduation. Both the initial and the second grades are shown on the studentís
permanent academic record. Students are cautioned that for some purposes, such
as admission into an academic program, both grades may be used.
In all other cases, students will be allowed to repeat courses according to the
following rules: Both the initial and the second grades will be on the studentís
permanent academic record. Both grades will be included in the calculation of the
grade-point average and in the determination of academic probation, suspension,
honors and graduation. Only the repeated course and not the initial credit hours
count toward the number needed for graduation.
The courses a student can repeat are determined by the school of record:
Students can repeat courses in which the original grade was
D+ or below. Other requests to repeat courses can be made by petition in consultation
with the academic adviser/department through the Dedman Deanís Office.
Cox School of Business.
Students can only repeat courses in which the original
grade was a D+ or below.
Meadows School of the Arts and Lyle School of Engineering.
Students can repeat
courses in which the original grade was a C- or below. Such courses can be repeated
Academic Forgiveness permits a student to have academic work taken 10 or
more years prior to the term of admission or readmission forgiven and not included
in the grade-point average or hours earned used for actions such as the determination
of admission, academic probation, suspension, honors and graduation. A
student must request academic forgiveness at the time of admission or readmission.
Currently enrolled students cannot request academic forgiveness. Once declared
and the student has enrolled, academic forgiveness cannot be rescinded.
A student can declare academic forgiveness only for courses taken 10 or more
years prior to the term of admission or readmission. The student can select the
term at which academic forgiveness starts. Academic forgiveness applies to all
courses taken during that term, regardless of the grade earned, and to all courses
taken prior to that term. Academic forgiveness cannot be applied to only some
courses for a term or to only some terms within the forgiveness period.
Forgiven academic work taken at SMU remains on the permanent academic
record. Academic Forgiveness is recorded on the record. The forgiven grades are
excluded from the grade-point average and hours earned. Transfer applicants must
provide transcripts from all institutions attended including those where all work
may be forgiven.
Academic Petitions and Waivers
Petitions and/or requests for waivers concerning general education requirements,
graduation requirements and the evaluation of transfer work should be submitted
to the Office of the Dean.
Petitions and/or requests for waivers concerning a major or a minor should be
submitted to the appropriate department chair or program coordinator/director for
Appeal of Grades
A student who feels that an assigned grade is other than the grade earned must
first discuss the matter with the course instructor to determine if the discrepancy is
caused by error or misunderstanding. At the time of the initial discussion, the student
may be asked to provide a written petition requesting the change of grade.
A student who is not satisfied by the instructorís denial of a request for a grade
change, and who maintains that the original grade was capriciously or unfairly
determined, may appeal to the chairperson of the department in which the course
was offered (or, in the case of a nondepartmental course, to a faculty agent designated
by the dean of the school offering the course). After discussing the matter
with the student, and bearing in mind that the final authority in matters of academic
judgment in the determination of a grade rests with the course instructor, the chair
(or faculty agent) will consult with the course instructor, who will subsequently
report to the student the disposition of the appeal.
A student who is not satisfied by the disposition of the appeal may appeal the
decision to the dean of the school offering the course. The dean will take action
as he or she deems appropriate. A student may appeal the deanís decision to the
provost. In their actions, the dean and the provost must respect the principle that
the determination of a grade rests with the course instructor.
Academic Grievance and Appeals Procedures for Students With Disabilities
The University policy for academic grievance and appeals procedures for students
with disabilities is available in the offices of Services for Students With Disabilities
and of the University Registrar.
Interpretation of Course Numbers
Each SMU course has a four-digit course number. The first number indicates
the general level of the course: 1 Ė first year; 2 Ė sophomore; 3 Ė junior; 4 Ė senior;
5 Ė senior or graduate; 6, 7, 8, 9 Ė graduate. The second digit specifies the number
of credit hours (ď0Ē for this digit denotes no credit, one-half hour of credit, or 10-15
hours of credit; for theology courses, a ď1Ē denotes one or one and one-half hours
of credit). The third and fourth digits are used to make the course number unique
within the department.
Students must file an Application for Candidacy to Graduate form with their academic
deanís office during the term at the end of which they have completed all degree
requirements. Applications should be filed by the deadline date in the Official University
Calendar. Applications cannot be accepted after the degree conferral date. Students
will be charged an Apply to Graduate fee during the term the application is filed.
An all-University Commencement Convocation is held in May for students on
schedule and enrolled to complete degree requirements during the spring term. Students
on schedule and enrolled to complete all degree requirements during the following
summer term also may participate in the University Commencement
Convocation. Students also may participate in departmental or school ceremonies
following the University Commencement according to the policies of the departments
An all-University Graduation Ceremony is held each December for students
completing degree requirements during the fall term. Students who completed
degree requirements during the previous summer term may also participate.
A student may participate once in either the May All-University Commencement
Convocation or the December Graduation Ceremony for a given degree, but
To participate in a ceremony a student must file an Application for Candidacy
to Graduate or a declaration of Intent to Participate form.
Statute of Limitations for Degree Plans
A student who has been readmitted to the University following an absence of
more than three years will be expected to meet all current requirements for
There are three classes of graduation honors: summa cum laude, magna cum laude
and cum laude. The awarding of graduation honors will be determined by minimum
G.P.A.s announced at the beginning of each academic year for each of the four undergraduate
schools Ė Cox, Dedman (including Evening Studies), Meadows and Lyle.
The minimum G.P.A.s generally will represent the top 5 percent, 10 percent and 15
percent of graduates in the school. Students earning a degree with majors in two or
more schools will receive the highest degree honors for which they are eligible.
The minimum G.P.A.s for each school will be determined by pooling all graduates
in the school from the previous three academic years and determining the
G.P.A.s in each school that represent the top 5th, 10th and 15th percentiles. The
G.P.A. used is the lower of the studentís SMU cumulative G.P.A. and all-college
G.P.A. (includes transfer work).
The minimum graduation honors G.P.A.s for students graduating during the 2009-
2010 academic year will be announced in October 2009. Students may obtain information
about minimum G.P.A.s required in past years from their academic schools.
Separate from eligibility for graduation honors, the Cox School of Business
awards special Cox Honors distinction to students who have successfully completed
the requirements for the Cox B.B.A. Honors Program. Departmental Distinction
may be awarded in Dedman College and the Meadows School of the Arts. Students
may also earn Honors in the Liberal Arts. These honors require completion of
requirements prescribed by the department or school. Further information may be
obtained from the individual departments and schools.