2020 - 2021 General Catalogue 
    Jul 24, 2024  
2020 - 2021 General Catalogue [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academic Information | 3

Admission Requirements

Regular Admission

Beginning Freshmen Who Are Graduates of Accredited Secondary Schools

Graduates of accredited secondary schools, who have graduated with at least a "C" average on all high school work attempted, may be considered for admission to UWA by presenting the following: (1) a high school transcript showing date of graduation and credit for a minimum of fifteen acceptable units, and (2) acceptable scores on either the American College Test (ACT) or Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). Such graduates who have a composite ACT score or SAT score which indicates that they can do acceptable work at this institution and who have satisfactory grades in academic subjects in high school may be admitted directly by the Admissions Office.

Individuals who wish to pursue a vocational or technical associate degree may apply for conditional admission to the University. Individuals must submit the following:  (1) a high school transcript or GED showing date of graduation and credit for a minimum of fifteen (15) acceptable units, and (2) acceptable scores on either the American College Test (ACT), Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or Silver or above on the ACT WorkKeys Assessment.

Individuals who do not meet the general admission requirements for freshmen but who are judged to have potential for success may be approved for admission to the University. An individual interested in admission should contact the Admissions Office.

Admission granted if the student satisfies the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) academic standards as a full qualifier under NCAA Division II guidelines, as deemed by the Department of Athletics. This option is available for athletes and non-athletes. For more information, please contact the UWA Department of Athletics at (205) 652-3784.

Beginning Freshmen Who Are Home-Schooled

Applications are welcomed from students who are home-schooled. These individuals must meet the ACT/SAT and grade point average requirements of the general admission policies for beginning freshmen. They must also present certified transcripts of their courses and grades that have been documented by an agency that has been approved by the State Department of Education to operate within the state in which the agency is located. Students who cannot present certified transcripts of their home-schooling must successfully complete the GED.

Persons Who Are Not Graduates of Accredited Secondary Schools

Graduates of non-accredited secondary schools and students who have attended accredited secondary schools for a minimum of three years without graduating may be admitted to the University by examinations if they present evidence that they have completed fifteen acceptable units of high school work and if, in the opinion of the Admission and Appeals Committee, they possess the necessary abilities to attend college effectively and acceptably.

Veterans and mature adults who do not have the required high school credits but who, in the opinion of the Admission and Appeals Committee, possess the necessary abilities to attend college effectively and acceptably may be admitted to the University by passing the General Education Development Tests with scores satisfactory to the University. Applicants who are not graduates of secondary schools should present ACT scores or SAT scores for consideration with their applications. Such applicants who have acceptable scores on these tests and on other tests which may be required and who have satisfactory grades in academic subjects in high school may be admitted directly by the Admissions Office. Applications from applicants who fail to meet either of these requirements may be evaluated by the Admission and Appeals Committee to determine acceptability.

Early Admission

Students who have completed the eleventh grade of an accredited secondary school, who have a 3.0 or higher GPA,  21 or higher composite score on the ACT or 1060 on the SAT, and who are considered to possess the necessary abilities to attend college effectively and acceptably, may apply for early admission or the Summer Jump program.  Students who enroll for classes on campus or at an approved location, and successfully complete their coursework; will have the option to return to their high school program at the end of summer or continue on with their college coursework at UWA.

NOTE(s): Students who desire a high school diploma after successful completion of their freshman year of college coursework must make arrangements with their high school. Exceptions to admissions criteria may be made at the discretion of the Office of Admissions. 

Transfer Students

Students who have attended other colleges and universities may apply for admission to the University, submitting transcripts from all colleges previously attended. Undergraduate transfer applicants must have satisfactory citizenship records at the last institution attended and must be eligible to return to the last institution which they attended on a full-time basis. Transfer students with fewer than 24 semester hours of transfer credit, at least 12 hours of which meet basic curriculum requirements in their declared degree program, must meet the ACT/SAT eligibility requirements of a beginning freshman, and may be admitted "unconditionally" or "conditionally," based on the requirements below.

  1. Unconditional Admission-A transfer student who has earned a combined grade point average of 2.00 ("C" average) or above on all work attempted at all previous institutions attended and who is eligible to return to the last institution he/she attended on a full-time basis will be admitted unconditionally to the University.
  2. Conditional Admission-A transfer student who has an overall grade point average of less than 2.00 and is eligible to return to the last institution he/she attended on a full-time basis will be admitted to the University on probation. A transfer student admitted on probation must enroll for not less than 12 semester hours commensurate with the course of study in which he/she plans to earn a degree. The student will be required to have a minimum 2.00 for the first semester in order to continue enrollment the following semester and a minimum 2.00 GPA in the second semester for continued enrollment. Failure to have the required semester grade point average following the student's first two semesters will result in the student being placed on "First Academic Suspension" from the University.

Community College Transfers: To facilitate the transition from an Alabama community college to the four-year programs at UWA, students are encouraged to use the AGSC/STARS Guide at http://transfer.uwa.edu  in order to assist with questions pertaining to course transfers. Any student who has questions about transfer credits should contact the UWA Registrar and/or the appropriate Dean.

Transfer Credit

Transfer students who are admitted to UWA may present for consideration for transfer credit all courses from accredited institutions which are applicable to their curriculums, provided a grade of "C" or higher was earned in each course. (Also, see "Evaluation of Student Records"). Courses in which a grade of "D" was earned may be considered for credit according to the following scale, based upon a 4.00 system:

  1. Cumulative quality-point ratio of 2.50 or higher, unlimited.
  2. Cumulative quality-point ratio of at least 2.25, a maximum of 9 semester hours.
  3. Cumulative quality-point ratio of at least 2.00, a maximum of 6 semester hours.
  4. Cumulative quality-point ratio of at least 1.80, a maximum of 3 semester hours.
  5. Cumulative quality-point ratio of less than 1.80, no transfer credit allowed for any courses with "D" grades.

When a student is eligible to receive credit by transfer for only a limited number of courses in which he/she made the grade of "D," the Dean makes the decision on the courses for which credit is to be allowed. This decision is made on the basis of the value of the courses to the student in the proposed program. A student who wishes to receive credit for "D" courses other than those chosen, within the limits of the scale above, should consult with the Dean immediately upon receiving the evaluation of transfer credits. By mutual consent between the Dean and the student, changes in the "D" courses accepted may be made, but only during the student's first semester in residence. The Dean's decision in such matters is final.

In determining the eligibility of credits for transfer, the following limitations are placed on some credits:

  1. Credits earned at other institutions in compensatory courses are not eligible for transfer.
  2. Courses in Written English in which the student made a grade of "D" are not eligible for transfer.
  3. Technical or vocational credits are only acceptable for students enrolling in the Bachelor of Technology program or Bachelor of Public Safety program. Technical or vocational credits are deleted from transcripts in instances where students have indicated a proposed academic major on their application for admission.
  4. Credit awarded by an institution based on an advanced placement program unique to that institution is not transferable.
  5. Credits earned for non-academic courses for which credit can be awarded numerous times, such as Forum, Convocation, Orientation, etc. will be limited to only one term of credit.
  6. Courses on the semester system that would transfer in less than a full semester hour of credit are generally not acceptable.

Any transfer credit from another college of the university is subject to reevaluation by the Dean of each college within the University to which the student may apply.

Transient Credit

Under certain circumstances a student may earn credit toward a degree at UWA on a transient basis from another college or university. A student who is on probation or suspension at UWA is not eligible for transient work. A student who has completed a course at UWA with a grade of "D" or "F" is not eligible to repeat that course on a transient basis at another institution, except under unusual circumstances and with prior approval of the Provost. Also, a student may not earn credit at another institution for a higher-level course in a specific area in which the student has received an unsatisfactory grade in the lower level course in the same area. For example, a student who completes MH 081  at UWA with a grade of "N" or "F" may not earn credit for a higher-level math course at another institution until he/she has satisfied the requirement of MH 081  at UWA. A maximum number of 60 hours can be accepted from a junior college. A student desiring to take transient work should complete the appropriate form for pre-approval in the office of his or her Dean.

Enrollment as an Auditor

Any person wishing to audit a course in which college degree credit may be earned must follow standard application procedures. He/She must be registered for the course and must pay all required fees. He/She is expected to attend class meetings and to conform to all requirements of the instructor of the course. An auditor (a student wishing to attend such courses on a non-credit basis) ordinarily will satisfy all requirements for admission to the University. He/She also must pay the application fee. Upon approval of the dean of the college in which a course is housed, a student may be permitted to attend a course as an auditor without satisfying normal admission requirements. The University reserves the right to establish appropriate standards for such enrollments. Under no circumstances can a student receive credit toward a degree by auditing a course, and in no case can a professor assign a grade (other than AU) to any work presented by an auditing student.

International Students

Applications are welcomed from international students who wish to attend UWA. In addition to meeting the admission requirements of the University, foreign applicants whose native language is not English must submit satisfactory scores on an approved English proficiency test https://www.uwa.edu/admissions/internationalstudents/entrance-exams-english-proficiency. In all cases, regardless of the type of previous training in the English language received outside of the United States, acceptable English Proficiency test scores must be submitted. Applicants must also file financial statements confirming the availability of sufficient funds to meet all costs while studying at the University.

Official transcripts may be required to be evaluated by an outside evaluation service. Applicants must hold at least a bachelor's degree from a senior institution that was regionally accredited at the time the degree was earned. If outside evaluations are required, the evaluation must come directly from an evaluation service affiliated with the National Association of Credit Evaluation Services (NACES). For a listing of NACES member organizations and their contact information, please visit www.naces.org/members.htm. This evaluation is to be forwarded directly to International Programs, UWA, 1 College Drive, Station #51, Livingston, AL 35470. The cost of this evaluation will be the responsibility of the student.

All international students are required to purchase University-approved health and accident insurance for themselves and their dependents, if any, immediately upon their acceptance into the University. https://www.uwa.edu/admissions/internationalstudents/medical-insurance

American College Testing Program

UWA participates in the American College Testing Program. All prospective students should arrange through their high schools to take the American College Tests before applying for admission. ACT scores are required in evaluating applications for admission and in providing guidance for students. College Entrance Examination Board (SAT) scores may be substituted.

Notice of Admission

Formal admission to the University is a prerequisite for overnight presence on the campus and registration for courses. Notice of admission is sent to the applicant after the application and credentials have been filed in the Office of Admissions and Enrollment Management and official action has been taken on the request for admission. Acceptance or rejection of all applications is determined by University officials.

Admission standards for certain academic programs, as given in the appropriate section of this Catalogue, are approved by the respective unit's Academic Council and by the University Academic Council.

Freshman Housing Residency Requirement

The University of West Alabama requires all freshmen to live on campus for up to one academic year. Living on campus provides educational and social benefits not available to students who live off campus. The residence halls provide students with a supportive living environment, proximity to academic resources, and convenient access to organized student activities. Students first enrolling in the summer are required to live on campus during the summer, fall, and spring semesters. Students first enrolling in the fall are required to live on campus during the fall and spring semesters. Students first enrolling in the spring are required to live on campus during the spring semester.

Freshmen seeking an exemption to the housing requirement must fill out the Freshman Housing Exemption Form and submit it to the Director of Housing and Residence Life. The form is available here.

If a student has already checked into the residence halls, he/she must also submit a Housing Agreement Release Form.

Exemptions to the Freshman Housing Residency Requirement may be requested for the following reasons:

  • The student will be 21 years of age or older by the first day of classes of his/her first semester at UWA.
  • The student will be living with his/her parent or legal guardian within a 30-mile radius of Livingston, Alabama.
  • The student is married.
  • The student is the custodial parent of a dependent child.
  • The student is a transfer student and UWA has accepted at least 24 semester credits (does not include AP credit or dual enrollment credits).
  • The student is a military veteran.
  • The student will be enrolled less than full-time (12 hours) each semester on campus.

Students who have other compelling reasons of why they should be exempt from the Freshman Housing Residency Requirement should contact the Director of Housing and Residence Life.

Failure to meet the requirement will result in a charge to the student's University account each semester of the student's first academic year equal to the cost of a shared room in Gilbert Hall and an All Access meal plan. Disciplinary action may also be taken.

Reservations for University Housing

After a prospective student applies for admission to the University and pays his/her $200 Enrollment Confirmation Fee, the prospective student may apply for campus housing.  Housing applications are available online here. It is important to apply for a reservation in University housing as soon as possible after applying for admission to the University.

Rooms are assigned according to the date of the student's submission of the application for housing. Rooms are not assigned according to the date the student first applies for admission to the University. UWA reserves the right to change the residence hall assignment of any student or students at any time.


All students must register and pay entrance fees before being admitted to classes. Students are given the opportunity to pre-register for the next semester at specified times. One or more days are provided at the beginning of each semester for pre-registered students to complete registration and for other students to register according to a published schedule. The Provost, the Registrar, and the Deans supervise the registration process, and members of the faculty advise students on their programs of study.

Evaluation of Student Records

The Office of the Dean in each College evaluates student records. A student transferring to UWA from another institution must submit official transcripts of ALL college work done elsewhere to the Office of Admissions. The Office of Admissions sends copies of all the student's transcripts to the appropriate Dean of the College. The Dean evaluates each transcript in terms of programs and requirements at UWA. Among the factors affecting this evaluation are the academic level of the work, the applicability of the courses to the UWA curriculum, the accreditation status of the other institution, and the grades received in each course. Credit for "D" work may be allowed according to the scale for transfer credit. No more than 60 semester hours of credit can be accepted from a junior college, and no credit is allowed in a baccalaureate program for courses taken at a junior college after the student has earned a total of 90 semester hours credit from any institution or combination of institutions, junior or senior. Transfer credit from a junior college may be accepted for a student in an associate degree program, even though that student has earned a total of 90 semester hours credit. Such credit must be for courses required in the associate degree curriculum and is accepted only with the approval of the Dean of the College in which the student is enrolled. A student who has a total of 60-90 semester hours credit from any institution or combination of institutions may, with prior written approval of his/her Dean, take lower-level courses only (equivalent to courses at UWA which are numbered in the 200 series) at a junior college, provided the work is not to be used in a curriculum area where the student has a quality-point deficiency and provided the student has not previously taken an equivalent course at UWA with a grade of "F" or "D." A copy of the evaluation form is sent to the Registrar's Office for the credit to be entered on the permanent record. A second copy is sent directly to the student, and a third copy is filed in the Dean's Office. A student who has any question about the evaluation of credits should consult the Dean of his/her College immediately after receiving the form.

Advanced Placement (AP) Exam

Art 2D Design Basic Design 3-5 3
Art Drawing Drawing I 3-5 3
Art History Survey of Art History I
Survey of Art History I & II
Biology Introduction to Biology I 
Introduction to Biology I & II 
Calculus AB
Calculus BC
Calculus I
Calculus I & II
Chemistry General Chemistry I 
General Chemistry I & II
Computer Sci A
Computer Sci AB
Microcomputer Applications
Microcomputer Applications
English/Lang-Comp Written English I
Written English I & II
English/Lit-Comp Written English I
Written English I&II
Environmental Sci Intro to Environmental Science 3-5 4
European History Western Civilization I
Western Civilization I & II 
French Language Introductory French I & II 3-5 8
French Literature Introductory French I & II 3-5 8
German Language NO CREDIT N/A N/A
Govt/Politics- Comparative Government Comparative 3-5 3
Govt/Politics- United States American Government 3-5 3
Human Geography Introduction to Geography 3-5 3
Latin - Vergil NO CREDIT N/A N/A
Latin - Latin Lit NO CREDIT N/A N/A
Music Theory Music Theory I
Music Theory I & II
Physics B College Physics I & II 3-5 8
Physics C (Mechanics) College Physics I 3-5 4
Physics C (Electric & Magn) College Physics II 3-5  
Psychology General Psychology 3-5 3
Spanish-Language Introductory Spanish I & II 3-5 8
Spanish-Literature Introductory Spanish I & II 3-5 8
Statistics Introduction to Statistics 3-5 3
Studio Art-Drawing Drawing I & Basic Design 3-5 6
U.S. History American History I 3 3
American History I & II 4-5 6
World History Western Civilization I
Western Civilization I & II

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Advanced standing credit may be earned through CLEP as indicated in the chart below. Credit through subject examinations may not be earned for courses in which previously or currently enrolled, including courses failed in residence, or for courses in which credit already has been earned in course work at a higher level. Also, credit may not be earned through a CLEP subject examination for one or both of a sequence of courses, e.g., history, if one of the courses has been attempted in residence.

CLEP subject examinations may be taken for credit only with the written approval of the Dean of the college in which enrolled. 

Subject Examination Minimum Score UWA Courses Equivalency-Credit
Accounting, Financial 50 AC 211  (3)
Algebra 50 MH 113  (3)
Algebra-Trigonometry 50 MH 113  -MH 114  (6)
American Government 50 PS 110  (3)
American Literature 50 EH 231  -EH 232  (6)
Analyzing & Interpreting Literature 50 EH 221  -EH 222  or
EH 231  -EH 232  (6)
Biology 50 BY 101  (4)
Business Law, Introductory 50 BA 263  (3)
Calculus with Elementary Functions 50 MH 121  (3)
Chemistry 50 CH 111  -CH 112  (8)
Composition, Freshman 50 EH 101  -EH 102  (6)
English Composition 50 EH 101  -EH 102  (6)
English Literature 50 EH 221  -EH 222  (6)
French, Level I 50
FR 101  -FR 102  (8)
FR 101  -FR 102  (8)
FR 201  -FR 202  (8)
History of U.S. I: Early Col. to 1877 50 HY 211  (3)
History of U.S. II: 1865 to Present 50 HY 212  (3)
Humanities 50 EH 221  or EH 231  (3) & One Fine Art (3)
Information Systems/Computer Applic 50 CS 205  (3)
Macroeconomics, Principles of 50 EC 202  (3)
Microeconomics, Principles of 50 EC 201  (3)
Management, Principles of 50 MG 300  (3)
Marketing, Principles of 50 MK 300  (3)
Natural Sciences 50 BY 101  (4) & Phys Sci Elective (4)
Psychology, Introductory 50 PY 100  
Social Sciences & History 50 One Soc Sci (3) and One History (3)
Sociology, Introductory 50 SY 100  (3)
Spanish, Level I/II 50
SP 101  -SP 102  (8)
SP 101  -SP 102  (8)
SP 201  -SP 202  (8)
Trigonometry 50 MH 114  (3)
Western Civ I: Ancient Near East to 1648 50 HY 101  (3)
Western Civ II: 1648 to Present 50 HY 102  (3)

International Baccalaureate (IB)

The University of West Alabama recognizes the rigor of the curriculum of the IB Diploma Program and invites students who have earned the IB diploma or individual course certificates to apply for admission. Credit will be awarded for the higher level examinations passed with acceptable scores. Specific subjects and higher level examinations scores that have been approved for credit are listed below. To receive credit, students must request that official IB examination results be forwarded to the Registrar. No credit will be given for the IB standard examinations.

IB Higher Level Examination Equivalent UWA Course Acceptable Score Semester Credit Hours
Art AT 100   5 or higher 3
Biology BY 101   6 or higher 8
Chemistry CH 111  & CH 112   6 or higher 8
Economics EC 201   7 3
English A1 EH 221  or EH 231   5 or higher 3
French FR 101   5 4
French FR 102   6 or higher 4
Geography GY 100   5 or higher 3
History-Americas HY 211   5 3
History-Americas HY 212   6 or higher 3
History-Europe HY 101   5 3
History-Europe    6 or higher 3
Mathematics MH 121  & MH 122   6 or higher 8
Music MU 100   5 or higher 3
Philosophy PL 100     5 or higher 3
Physics PH 201  & PH 202   6 or higher 8
Psychology PY 100   5 or higher 3
Spanish SP 101   5 4
Spanish SP 102   6 or higher 4
Theater Arts TH 100   5 or higher 3

Advanced Level General Certificate of Education (A-Level)

UWA participates in the A-Level program and awards credit based on the following schedules. The A-Level credit schedule is reviewed regularly by faculty and may be changed without notice. To be considered for A-Level, official test results must be sent by the appropriate testing service. Advanced Level Certificates are now awarded by several different examining boards:  Edexcel, Cambridge, Hong Kong Examination Board, etc.

Credit is awarded for courses with a grade of C or higher. All grades will be posted as "credit." For subjects not mentioned here, the syllabus must be reviewed by the college or department to determine if there is a UWA equivalent.

A-Level Course UWA Course Equivalent Credit Hours Awarded
Accounting AC 211   3
Biology BY 101   8
Chemistry CH 101   4
Computing CS 205   3
Economics EC 201  and EC 202   6
English EH 101  and EH 102   6
English Literature EH 221  and EH 222   6
French FR 101  and FR 102   8
Geography GY 100   3
History HY 101  and HY 102   6
Mathematics MH 113   3
Philosophy PL 100   3
Physics PH 101   4
Politics PS 110   3
Psychology PY 100   3
Sociology SY 100   3
Spanish SP 101  and SP 102   8
Theatre Studies TH 100   3

French Baccalaureate Exam

Credit is awarded for examinations with a mark of 10 or higher. Both the French-Written and French-Speaking examination scores must be 10 or higher, and both scores are averaged for a single score. If either score is below 10, even if the average total is 10 or higher, credit will not be awarded.

Examination UWA Course Equivalent Credit Hours Awarded
Economics and Social Sciences EC 201   3
English EH 101   3
French FR 101  and FR 102   8
History and Geography HY 101  and HY 102   6
Mathematics MH 121  and MH 122   8
Philosophy PL 100   3
Science BY 101   4
Spanish SP 101  and SP 102   8

Maximum Allowance of Advanced Credit

A maximum of fifteen (15) credit hours of advanced credit from the secondary level (AP, CLEP, A-Level, B.G. or equivalent) will be accepted. Only one advanced credit transfer per subject (i.e. one mathematics course, one history course, one biology course, etc.).

Academic Advising


The University of West Alabama believes advising is a holistic approach to the development of the student through a mutual academic relationship between the advisor and the student, which includes academic advising, career exploration, and identification of campus and community resources.


The mission of advising is to foster a personalized partnership between student and advisor that promotes active and responsible learning. Our purpose is also to facilitate student ownership of their educational experience and assist students in identifying and clarifying academic, career, and personal goals.


UWA uses a split model of advising, using both a centralized advising system as well as faculty advising. Incoming students (freshmen and transfer students with less than 24 credit hours) are assigned a CARES Advisor who works closely with each student during the first two years on campus. Students meet with their advisor at least twice each semester, as well as during the pre-registration period. The goal of each meeting is to assist students in identifying resources and activities that help them formulate goals and develop a plan to achieve those goals. CARES Advisors use the Appreciative Advising philosophy in working with students.

Once a student obtains at least 45 - 55 credit hours, they are transitioned to a faculty advisor in their major and/or college. While CARES Advisors work with students to formulate goals and develop a plan to meet those goals, faculty advisors are more specialized in their fields and can begin assisting students in accomplishing their set goals. Faculty advisors can provide students with information on graduate schools and/or career options in their chosen fields. They may also assist students in developing a professional network in their respective areas of interest.

After a student has been transitioned to a faculty advisor, the Office of the Dean of each College maintains a file of relevant materials on each student which is available for examination by the student and the advisor in planning the student's program. Included in these materials may be a status sheet showing the completed courses and grades in each academic area and the cumulative totals of hours and grade points earned.

Each College assigns academic advisors to assist specific students at registration and at other times. Advisors provide general guidance as students plan their work toward graduation. At times the student may consult the Dean or others concerning schedules and programs. The assigned advisor or the student's Dean must sign each registration schedule and any change forms. Each student, however, has full responsibility for determining his/her own status in regard to the acceptability of his/her schedule and progress toward meeting graduation requirements.

Class Standing

For registration and other purposes, a student's class standing is determined by the number of semester hours credit earned, as follows:

Freshman - 0-29 semester hours
Sophomore - 30-59 semester hours
Junior - 60-89 semester hours
Senior - 90 or more semester hours

Academic Load

The normal load for an on-campus undergraduate student is fifteen semester hours a semester. Special permission from the appropriate Dean of the College is necessary for registration with loads of less than twelve or more than eighteen semester hours. Generally, a student with a cumulative quality-point ratio of 3.0 or higher overall and 3.0 or higher in courses taken at UWA or a student who is a graduating senior may qualify for a heavier academic load with the approval of the Dean.

The normal load for an online student is six to nine hours per term, not to exceed nine hours per term. Special permission from the appropriate Dean of the College is necessary for registration with loads of more than nine semester hours per term. Generally, a student with a cumulative quality-point ratio of 3.0 or higher overall and 3.0 or higher in courses taken at UWA or a student who is a graduating senior may qualify for a heavier academic load with the approval of the Dean.

The normal load for an online student taking both on-campus and online courses is fifteen semester hours. Students cannot exceed a total of eighteen hours (including both on-campus and online) within a given on-campus term without special permission from the Dean. For example, a student who is taking six hours during the Fall 1 online term and six hours during the Fall 2 online term will be limited to six hours during the Fall on-campus session. Special permission from the appropriate Dean of the College is necessary for an academic overload. Generally, a student with a cumulative quality-point ratio of 3.0 or higher overall and 3.0 or higher in courses taken at UWA or a student who is a graduating senior may qualify for a heavier academic load with the approval of the Dean.

Academic programs are planned so that a student generally should complete the basic curriculum (the general education pattern) required for his/her degree program by the end of the sophomore year, but a student should definitely have completed these courses by the time he/she has completed 90 semester hours.


Prerequisites of courses are listed in course descriptions in this catalogue. The prerequisite(s) for a course must be met before the course is taken. In addition, once a course is successfully completed, the student cannot enroll in its prerequisite(s) for credit. Any waiver of the prerequisite requirements must be approved by the instructor and his/her respective Dean.

Assignment to Special Classes

In some areas of the curriculum students may be placed in special classes or special sections on the basis of test scores or other data. Such special placement is designed to assist the student in developing his/her abilities as completely as possible in an area where previous training has been either outstanding or inadequate and where the usual course does not appear to meet his/her special needs.

A student whose test scores indicate a special need for reading improvement is required to take Educational Psychology EP 098. Reading Skills Improvement (3, Non-Degree Credit) . This course carries three semester hours of non-degree credit.

A student whose proficiency in English composition is less than that which is considered necessary for successful college work is required to pass EH 099. Fundamentals of Writing (3, Non-Degree Credit) , before enrolling for other English classes. EH 099  carries three semester hours of non-degree credit. Assignment to EH 099  is usually based on test scores but may result from the recommendations of a professor in consultation with the student. In the case of upperclassmen, assignment to EH 099  may be required by the Written Proficiency Committee after appropriate testing. In this case, a student who has completed the freshman English composition requirements will register for EH 099  for non-degree credit if he/she does not already have six semester hours credit in compensatory English composition. Otherwise, a student who is referred may register for the course non-credit.

On the basis of test scores and other data, a student may be required to pass  MH 081. Basic Algebra (3) , or MH 101. Intermediate Algebra (3) , courses designed to develop basic proficiency in mathematics and algebra. MH 081  carries three semester hours of non-degree credit and MH 101  carries three semester hours credit.

All entering students who have not successfully completed or been awarded credit for MH 113. Precalculus Algebra (3) , are required to submit scores from the American College Test (ACT) or Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). Placement in an entry-level Mathematics course will be determined by the mathematics score as follows:

ACT Enhanced SAT Recentered Placement
MH 081 
MH 101 
MH 113 
MH 114 
MH 121  

The Department of Mathematics offers a Mathematical Placement Examination for students who feel that they can place higher than their existing scores indicate.

NOTE: The course MH 081  discussed above carry non-degree credit only. This credit is counted in computing quality-point averages and in determining if a student must be placed on probation or suspension, but it cannot be counted toward meeting any requirements for a degree.

Change of Courses

By payment of a change-of-course fee, a student may change courses within the period designated on the academic calendar for adding and dropping classes. No student may enroll for a normal load after the last day for adding a course. With permission of his/her advisor, a student is permitted to drop a course without grade penalty during the first twenty-four class days (the first twenty class days during summer) of a semester. However, no financial reduction will be given after the first ten days of classes. The exact date for each semester is shown in the academic calendar. Any course(s) dropped after that date, a grade of "WP" or "WF" is assigned, depending on whether the student is passing or failing at the time the course is dropped. No student, however, is allowed to drop a course within the last ten class days of the semester for any reason. A student who discontinues attending a class without following the specified procedures for dropping a course will have the grade of "F" assigned.

Size of Classes

The University reserves the privilege of withdrawing any course in which an insufficient number of students have enrolled (generally, fewer than ten for lower-division courses and eight for upper-division and graduate courses). Large classes are closed or divided into sections whenever the interests of the students are better served by so doing. Decisions involving course enrollments are made by the Dean, with the approval of the Provost.

Transfer Within The University

The UWA student desiring to transfer from one of the undergraduate colleges to another proceeds as follows:

  1. He/she goes to the Office of the Dean of the College where currently enrolled and "signs out" his/her status sheet.  He/she takes the status sheet to the chairperson of the department in which the student intends to major in the other College. The department chairperson, or a designated representative, counsels with the student regarding the proposed transfer and the feasibility of the proposed plans.
  2. Once agreement is reached on these matters, the department chairperson, or the representative, completes a form approving transfer. The chairperson may also at this time require the student to provide personal and academic information which will be needed by the new College.
  3. The student then takes the status sheet and the transfer approval form back to the Office of the Dean in the College where he/she has been enrolled. Here the necessary transfer forms are prepared in quadruplicate and signed by the Dean.
  4. He/she then takes the counseling forms, the status sheet, and other materials to the Office of the Dean of the new College.
  5. If, after consulting with a counselor, the student decides not to transfer, he/she must return the status sheet immediately to the Office of the Dean in the College where he/she is currently enrolled.

When a student transferring within the University has previously had transcripts from another institution evaluated by another College at UWA, the College to which the student transfers reserves the right to review the evaluation of transcripts and, in consultation with the student, to make whatever changes may be necessary and reasonable in order to make the evaluation more applicable to the curriculum of the College or to bring it into line with current policies.

Withdrawal, Resignation and Dismissal

A student who must resign from the University at any time other than at the close of a semester is required to confer with the Office of the Registrar in person or by written notification. If withdrawal occurs within the first three weeks of classes, a student is allowed to resign without grade penalty. If withdrawal occurs after the fifteenth class day, the student receives a grade of "WP" or "WF" in each course, depending on whether he/she is passing or failing at the time of resignation. No student, however, is allowed to withdraw within the last ten class days of the semester except in an extreme medical emergency or similar situation (A class day is defined as a weekday for both online and on campus students.)  A student who leaves school during a semester without following the specified procedures for resignation receives a grade of "F" in each course for which he/she is registered.

The University reserves the right to discontinue the enrollment of any student at any time when University officials judge that such action will serve the best interest of the institution.

For Financial Policy refer to the Student Affairs sections entitled "Refunds ."

The College Year

The Semester System

UWA is organized on the semester system. The University year is divided into three semesters of approximately equal length. A student may enter at the beginning of any semester if admission is approved.

The Summer Semester

The summer semester is considered a regular part of the University year. Work leading to the various degrees is offered during the summer.

The Grading System

Grades and Quality Points

The University records student achievement by means of a letter-grade system based upon comparative performance. To facilitate the computing of grade averages, the University places a quality-point value on the satisfactory grades. The following table gives the letters used, their meanings, and the corresponding quality-point values:

A - Excellent Four grade points per hour
B - Good Three grade points per hour
C - Average Two grade points per hour
D - Below Average One grade point per hour
F - Failure No grade points
I - Incomplete No grade points
IP - Internship in Progress No grade points
P - Pass No grade points
W - Withdrawn No grade points
WP - Withdrawn Passing No grade points
WF - Withdrawn Failing No grade points
N - Non-Credit No grade points
AU - Audit No grade points
X - Absent from Examination No grade points

The grade of "I" is assigned to a student who has been unable to complete all course requirements because of personal illness or circumstances judged by the instructor to warrant consideration. An "I" is not assigned for absence from examination, unless the absence has already been officially excused.

The grade of "N" is assigned in certain basic curriculum and compensatory courses when a student has not earned the grade necessary to meet the requirements for that course (usually a "C"). Students are not charged with hours attempted for courses in which they received an "N"; thus, there is no GPA penalty for "N" grades. However, a student may be assigned an "N" only one time for any given course. In those cases in which a course is a prerequisite for another course, students must repeat the course in which they receive an "N" until they earn a satisfactory grade.

The grade of "X" is assigned to a student who fails to take the final examination. In order to remove the "X" grade, a student must receive permission from his/her Dean to schedule a make-up examination.

It is the student's responsibility to complete the necessary work to remove a grade of "I" or "X" at least ten class days prior to the last class day of the following on-campus semester or second online session. For example, if a student receives a grade of "I" or "X" in the Spring on-campus semester, the necessary work must be completed at least ten days prior to the end of the following Summer on-campus semester, and if a student receives a grade of "I" or "X" in the Spring 1 online session, the necessary work must completed at least ten class days prior to the end of the following Summer online session. Failure to remove the "I" or "X" grade during the specified time will result in the student's receiving an "F" grade.


A final examination is given in every course at the end of the semester in accordance with a definite schedule. No variation from this schedule of examinations is allowed except on written authority from the Dean of the College in which the course is offered.


Final marks for each semester are recorded and are preserved as a part of the permanent record of the student. Reports are made to students and to others whom they designate as soon as possible after the close of each semester.

The Quality-Point Ratio

The quality-point ratio for determining a student's academic status and his or her eligibility for graduation is computed by dividing grade points earned on work at UWA by semester hours attempted. In cases where a student repeats a course, the hours attempted are counted once, and the lowest grade is deleted as credit cannot be given twice for the same course.

The Dean's List and President's List

Each semester the Dean's List gives recognition to those undergraduate students who have been enrolled for twelve semester hours or more and have made for the semester a quality-point ratio between 3.25 and 3.79, with no grade lower than a "C."

The President's List gives recognition to undergraduate students with exceptionally high grades for the semester, those with grade-point averages of 3.80 or higher on at least twelve semester hours credit with no grade lower than a "C."

Requirements for Continuation in Residence

Students are required to make academic progress toward a degree by maintaining the minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) on work attempted at UWA in accordance with the following table:

90 or above

GOOD ACADEMIC STANDING: A student will be considered in "Good Academic Standing" if he/she is enrolled or eligible to re-enroll at the University of West Alabama.

ACADEMIC WARNING: A student will be placed on "Academic Warning" at the end of any semester in which he/she does not meet the required GPA for his/her classification.

ACADEMIC PROBATION: A student on "Academic Warning" is placed on "Academic Probation" at the end of a semester in which the student's cumulative GPA on credits attempted at UWA falls below the required GPA for his/her classification. A student on "Academic Probation" who earns a GPA of 2.00 or better but still has not achieved the required GPA for his/her classification will continue on "Academic Probation." The student will be removed from "Academic Probation" once the minimum cumulative GPA has been achieved.

FIRST ACADEMIC SUSPENSION: A student who is on "Academic Probation" will be placed on "First Academic Suspension" for a period of one semester at the end of a term in which the student fails to earn a GPA of 2.00 or better for that term. Also, when a student fails the same course at UWA three times, he/she will be placed on First Academic Suspension. The suspended student may return to UWA on "Academic Probation" after sitting out a semester.

Conditionally admitted students are considered on "Academic Probation" when admitted, and thus conditionally admitted students who fail to have the required GPA following the first two semesters enrolled will be placed on First Academic Suspension.

SECOND ACADEMIC SUSPENSION: A student returning from a "First Academic Suspension" will be placed on a "Second Academic Suspension" if the student fails to earn a 2.00 GPA on the work attempted during that term. The second suspension will be for a mandatory period of two semesters. The student will automatically be eligible to return after serving the two semester suspension and will be re-admitted on "Academic Probation."

INDEFINITE ACADEMIC SUSPENSION: A student returning from a "Second Academic Suspension" who again fails to earn the required 2.00 GPA for the term, will be placed on "Indefinite Academic Suspension" for a mandatory period of four semesters. Also, when a student fails the same course at UWA four times, he/she will be placed on Indefinite Academic Suspension.

PROCEDURES FOR REINSTATEMENT: Any student on "First Academic Suspension" may appeal his/her suspension to the University's Admissions and Appeals Committee. The appeal must be based on extenuating circumstances which may have caused the student to have academic difficulties for a particular semester. The appeal must also provide adequate evidence of ability, maturity, and motivation on the part of the student. The appeal form may be obtained by contacting the Registrar's Office or it can be found on the UWA website at www.uwa.edu. A student who is placed on either the "Second Academic Suspension" or the "Indefinite Academic Suspension" is required to sit out his/her mandatory suspension period and cannot appeal his/her suspension to the Committee.

IMPORTANT: A student on academic suspension from UWA may not use credit earned at another institution for clearing his/her suspension or for meeting degree requirements for graduation from UWA. Any credits earned by a student at another institution while he/she is on suspension will not transfer back to UWA.

A student who returns to the University after having been out for four consecutive semesters or more (excluding Summer Semesters) may have his/her continuation in residence based on the work done since returning to school.

It is the student's responsibility at all times to know his/her status regarding continuation in residence. If in doubt about his/her standing, the student should consult the Registrar.

Progress Toward Degree Requirements for Intercollegiate Athletics

To be eligible to represent the University of West Alabama in intercollegiate athletics competition, a student-athlete shall maintain progress toward a baccalaureate or equivalent degree at the institution.

Summary of Division II Progress Toward Degree Requirements

Entering Second Year of Collegiate Enrollment Entering Third Year of Collegiate Enrollment Entering Fourth Year of Collegiate Enrollment Entering Fifth Year of Collegiate Enrollment
Good academic standing Good academic standing Good academic standing Good academic standing
Nine credits per term in enrolled full-time the previous term Nine credits per term in enrolled full-time the previous term Nine credits per term in enrolled full-time the previous term Nine credits per term in enrolled full-time the previous term
18/27 credits earned during regular academic year (not including summer) 18/27 credits earned during regular academic year (not including summer) 18/27 credits earned during regular academic year (not including summer) 18/27 credits earned during regular academic year (not including summer)
24 semester/36 quarter hours 24 semester/36 quarter hours or 48/72 following second year of collegiate enrollment 24 semester/36 quarter hours 24/36 quarter hours
2.0 cumulative GPA 2.0 cumulative GPA 2.0 cumulative GPA 2.0 cumulative GPA
  Designation of degree program    

Requirement for Practice or Competition

To be eligible for practice or competition, a student-athlete shall be enrolled in a least a minimum full-time program of studies leading to a baccalaureate or equivalent degree as defined by the institution and shall not be less than 12 semester hours.

Academic Forgiveness Policy

University of West Alabama undergraduate students who have completed 90 hours of academic credit at UWA and have earned a minimal grade point average of 2.00 on work attempted at UWA and overall may apply for the Academic Forgiveness Policy. This policy allows a student to delete up to three course grades (maximum of twelve semester hours) from the computation of their cumulative grade-point average. Academic Forgiveness can be granted only one time.

Deletion of grades from the computation of the cumulative grade-point average is not available in certain courses, including professional courses in the Division of Nursing and other programs in which requirements are mandated by other agencies.

This policy cannot be used by a student who is currently on academic suspension from the University in order to remove his/her suspension. The student must be currently enrolled or eligible to return before the policy can be applied to his/her academic record. The policy also cannot be used to drop the grade of a course that was assigned due to academic misconduct, a course applied toward a previously awarded baccalaureate degree, or a course accepted as transfer credit.

If a deleted grade is a required course for graduation and the same must be retaken, the course must be repeated at UWA. Once a request for deletion of a grade has been granted and that grade has been removed from the calculation of the cumulative grade-point average, the grade and the credit cannot be restored.

Honor societies or graduate/professional schools may or may not honor the Academic Forgiveness Policy. The GPA for recognizing honor students at graduation will be based on all coursework taken and will not take into consideration courses dropped by the Academic Forgiveness Policy.

Although the dropped course is not computed into the cumulative grade-point average, the dropped grade will remain on the transcript with the notation that it has been excluded from earned hours and the GPA.

Academic Forgiveness must be approved by the student's advisor, department chair, and dean.

Second-Chance Policy

A student who is readmitted to UWA after an absence of five or more years may apply in the Registrar's Office for consideration under the Second-Chance Policy. This policy allows the readmitted student who completes 21 semester hours of course work with no semester grade-point average below 2.5 to delete up to 32 semester hours of "D," "F," or "WF" grades received prior to readmission from calculation in the grade-point average. Certain courses, including professional and teaching field courses in the College of Education and professional courses in the Division of Nursing, are excluded from this policy, and all courses remain on the transcript along with an explanation of the Second-Chance Policy. A student is eligible to apply for consideration under this policy only once.

Graduation Requirements

Credit Requirements

For graduation a student must complete at least 120 semester hours of work or the number of hours required for his/her degree program, at least one third of which must be in upper-level courses, and must have twice as many grade points as hours attempted, or more if required by his/her degree program. Candidates who have transferred credit from other institutions must earn two grade points for each credit hour attempted at the University. A candidate for a degree must earn a sufficient number of credits to satisfy the requirements for graduation as outlined in the Curriculum Section of the catalogue approved for his/her program.

In general, a student is expected to fulfill all credit and course requirements as outlined in the catalogue in effect at the time he/she last entered the undergraduate College from which he/she is to be graduated, except that, if the student chooses, he/she may be graduated by the requirements of a later catalogue. The student must, however, meet all requirements as outlined in a single catalogue. A student who does not complete the requirements for a degree within six years of the date of admission to the University may be expected to meet the current requirements for the degree and may have transfer credits re-evaluated in terms of current policy.

Any substitutions of courses or other exceptions to the requirements for a degree must have the written approval of the Dean of the College after appropriate consultation with the chairperson(s) of all departments concerned. Written documentation of each such exception is placed in the student's record folder in the Registrar's Office.

Majors and Minors

Degree programs generally involve a major area coupled often with a minor or a comprehensive major area. A major consists of a minimum of 30 semester hours, at least one-half of which are from upper-division courses. A comprehensive major consists of a minimum of 50 semester hours, at least one-half of which are from upper division courses. A minor consists of a minimum of 20 semester hours, at least one-third of which are from upper division courses.

Double Majors

In some instances, it is possible for a student to complete two majors simultaneously as long as the majors fall within the same type of degree (e.g. Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts, etc.). A student who elects to do this must fulfill the basic curriculum requirements and the specific degree requirements of both majors. Students with double majors across college lines must be approved for graduation by the deans of both colleges, but must designate one major as the primary major. At Commencement, the student will receive one diploma. He/she will walk across the stage only with the graduates in the primary major area, but his/her name will be listed in the printed Commencement program under both colleges.

Additional Degrees

Students seeking to earn additional bachelor's degrees must complete a minimum of 30 semester hours in residence over and above the previously earned a US bachelor's degree (an international equivalent to the US bachelor's degree from a nationally accredited institution may also be considered). If a student holds a US bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher learning it is presumed all general education, core curriculum requirements are completed (a nationally accredited international equivalent to the US bachelor's degree may also be considered). Students must meet all additional academic requirements for the degree sought as stipulated in the General Catalogue at the time of enrollment in the additional degree program. Consistent with this policy, students may not be enrolled in two colleges within the University at the same time. Students may not be awarded multiple degrees in the same graduation exercises.

A former student previously enrolled at UWA who has left and will be returning to complete the previous degree or a former UWA student who has graduated and will be returning to enroll in a new program must reapply for admission.

Residence Requirements

A candidate for either an associate degree or a bachelor's degree must complete 25% of his or her total hours at UWA. (The resulting total number of hours may vary from program to program.) Specifically, a candidate for an associate degree must complete a minimum of 15 semester hours at UWA (although individual programs may require additional hours), and a candidate for a bachelor's degree must complete a minimum of 30 semester hours at the upper-division (300 and 400) levels at UWA. It is generally understood that in both instances the hours will be the final hours in a student's program. However, a candidate for graduation lacking fewer than fifteen semester hours may, with prior approval of his or her Dean, earn these credits by extension courses, correspondence courses, and/or work at another approved senior institution, provided the student has acceptable quality-point averages as required for graduation. Enrollment in a correspondence course must be completed at least three months prior to the awarding of the degree. Grades for correspondence courses must be in the office of the University Registrar two weeks prior to commencement if they are to be used for meeting graduation requirements at that time.

Exceptions to the residence requirements are made in individual instances for service personnel pursuing degrees in the Service Members Opportunity College program or by approval of the academic Dean and Provost.

Extension and Correspondence Work and Work at Other Institutions

As many as one-fourth of the credits for an undergraduate degree may be earned through extension, and/or correspondence and distance learning courses from approved institutions. Approved Armed Service credits and CLEP credits earned by any student are counted as extension and correspondence work. A "D" or lower grade earned in residence may not be raised by study elsewhere (except in unusual circumstances and with the prior approval of the Provost), nor may an inadequate average overall or in majors, minors, professional study, or the basic curriculum be raised by work taken outside the University. Also, a student may not earn credit at another institution for a higher-level course in a specific area in which the student has received an unsatisfactory grade in the lower level course in the same area. For example, a student who completes MH 081  at UWA with a grade of "N" or "F" may not earn credit for a higher-level math course at another institution until he/she has satisfied the requirement of MH 081  at UWA. Correspondence or other distance learning courses can be taken by students in residence only when a schedule cannot be arranged on campus. Any such work to be counted toward a degree at UWA must have the prior written approval of the Dean of the College in which the student is enrolled. Any work taken as a transient student at another institution must also have the Dean's prior written approval.

In general, little or no correspondence or other distance learning or extension work will be approved in a student's major or minor area, except in unusual circumstances. Correspondence catalogues are available for students to consult in the Office of the Dean in each College.

Proficiency in Written English

UWA requires that any student receiving a degree must meet established standards for proficiency in written English. Professors report all students in each class who, in their opinions, do not meet these standards. A student so reported must be evaluated by the Written English Proficiency Committee. A student who is judged by the Committee as not meeting the established standards must fulfill the specific requirements set by the Committee before being graduated. The student is informed by written notice of the specific requirements which the Committee has set. Generally, the Committee requires the completion of one or more compensatory courses or tutoring in the Writing Center in order that the student may achieve the required proficiency. Unless the Committee approves a delay, the student must begin work immediately to achieve proficiency and must meet the requirements within two semesters. A student in the referral program must be certified by the Committee when he/she has met the requirements.

Details of this evaluation process are available in the Office of the Dean of Liberal Arts, as are the criteria by which both faculty members and the Written English Proficiency Committee evaluate the written English of students.

Institutional Effectiveness Plan

Successful implementation of the University's plan to assess institutional effectiveness requires student participation at different stages of the student's academic career at the University. Students are required to participate in the assessment program as part of their University requirements prior to completing degree requirements. Participation in the assessment program in no way affects grades or academic standing. Furthermore, performance on the assessment batteries will in no way delay or defer graduation upon the satisfactory completion of requirements outlined in this catalogue. Exceptions to this policy may apply to students in Teacher Certification.

Application for the Degree and Payment of Fees

Formal application for a degree must be filed in the Office of the Registrar according to the deadlines in the Academic Calendar. A student who anticipates graduating at the spring commencement must pay all fees, including the graduation fee, during the last semester of residence. Unless these fees are paid, the student is not graduated. All candidates for a degree are required to participate in the graduation exercises unless they obtain a written statement of exemption from the dean of the college in which they are enrolled.

Honors and Awards

Recognition at Graduation

At graduation special recognition is given to baccalaureate candidates who have quality-point ratios of 3.50 or higher as determined by dividing the number of grade points earned by the number of semester hours attempted. These students are graduated "with honors," according to the following scale:

Summa cum laude - a quality-point ratio of 3.90 or higher
Magna cum laude - a quality-point ratio of at least 3.75, but less than 3.90
Cum laude - a quality‑point ratio of at least 3.50, but less than 3.75

A transfer student or student seeking a second bachelor's degree may be graduated "with honors" only if he/she has completed at least forty-five (45) semester credit hours in residence at UWA and has at least a 3.50 average in all work taken in residence at UWA. If these two computations place the student in two different levels of honors, as outlined above, he/she will be graduated according to the lower of the two.

The Ralph Lyon Award

The Ralph Lyon Award for Academic Excellence is given at commencement each year to the student with the most outstanding undergraduate scholastic record among those students who have completed requirements for a bachelor's degree since the preceding spring. This award is given to stimulate academic excellence at the University and to honor longtime faculty member and administrator Dr. Ralph M. Lyon. It was established through a gift from Mr. William Summerlin of Atlanta, Georgia, a UWA alumnus.

Alumni Achievement and Loyalty Award

In 1994, the University of West Alabama National Alumni Association established the UWA Alumni Awards Program to ensure that proper recognition is given to deserving graduates from each of the University's colleges and the Division of Nursing for outstanding success in their professional roles and to alumni who have shown outstanding service or loyalty to this institution. Awards are given at the Association's annual meeting during the Homecoming festivities.

The Society of The Golden Key

In 1963, a group of senior faculty members organized the Society of the Golden Key. The purpose of this organization is to honor former students and faculty members of UWA who have brought honor and distinction to the institution. Announcement of those honored by membership is made at Honors Day Convocation.

Attendance Policy

Students are expected to display responsible judgment in regard to class attendance and to know and follow the attendance policies for each of their classes. It is also the students' responsibility to keep a record of absences.

Faculty members are expected to keep an accurate record of attendance in all classes, recording all absences, including those due to late registration or change of course. A written attendance policy should be distributed to students in each class, and it is a faculty member's prerogative to consider attendance records in determining grades.

Absences may be excused by a faculty member and the student allowed to make up work if the faculty member deems an absence legitimate. A faculty member is not expected to provide make-up evaluation for a student who is absent without a legitimate excuse. In the event that the student and instructor do not agree on the acceptability of the excuse presented, the matter will be determined by the Dean of the college in which the course is offered. The instructor or the Dean may require the student to present appropriate documentation for an absence.

A student who is absent from a final examination must present evidence to his/her Dean to justify a make-up examination. If a make-up is approved, the instructor will set a time for the examination which is reasonable in terms of both the student's and instructor's schedules.

In the case of absences resulting from a student's involvement in official University functions, information is provided through the Online Excuse System (secure.uwa.edu/academicaffairs/excuses_request).

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is one of the highest values held by the University of West Alabama. Academic integrity compels everyone in the University community-faculty, staff, and students alike-to conduct his or her work with honesty, transparency, and honor. In all academic courses, a commitment to academic integrity entails working within the established codes and respecting intellectual property and its proper use. The enforcement of the academic integrity policy, then, is intended to protect the integrity of the University as well as the honor and standing of its students.

Academic dishonesty is defined as any attempt made by a student that potentially could have given them an ill-gained advantage in any academic pursuit that would not have been available if left solely to the student's own abilities and performance. Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, cheating, assisting in cheating, plagiarism, theft or possession of examinations or other unauthorized class materials, submitting the same assignment in more than one course without the instructors' consent, knowingly furnishing false academic information (such as falsified transcripts or excused absences, especially medical documents) to the University, altering or attempting to alter a grade or information on any University record, misrepresenting oneself to submit work for another student, or enlisting someone else to submit work falsely for oneself.

Plagiarism is defined as the failure to document properly all materials from sources, published or otherwise, that are included in an essay, research paper, examination, or other assignment. This includes items such as definitions of particular terms taken from a research source. Incidents of plagiarism include quoting or paraphrasing without properly crediting the author, using the syntax of a source document in a paraphrase without significant modifications, or incorporating the ideas of another without attribution by standard documentation. The actual words of a published or online source must be cited properly and enclosed in quotation marks according to the documentation style of the appropriate academic discipline. Failure to do so is plagiarism. Paraphrased material must also be documented accurately and appropriately and must represent the student's own words and own unique sentence structure. Failure to do so, again, is plagiarism. Finally, material which is carelessly or incompletely paraphrased is also regarded as an incident of plagiarism. It is the responsibility of the student to learn these academic conventions and abide by them. Further information about using sources and citations may be found via the Julia Tutwiler Library Home Page (http://library.uwa.edu/). This same page provides information on avoiding plagiarism in any of the style manuals given in the links.

The University of West Alabama reserves the right to use electronic means to detect and help prevent plagiarism. By enrolling at UWA, students agree to have course documents submitted to www.Turnitin.com or other means of electronic verification. All materials submitted to Turnitin.com will become source documents in Turnitin.com's restricted access database, solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism in such documents. Students may be required by instructors to submit individually course documents electronically to Turnitin.com.

In instances where a faculty or staff member believes a student has committed or assisted in an act of academic dishonesty, the student is consulted to determine if the matter can be resolved. Following consultation with the student, if the faculty member believes an act of academic dishonesty has been committed and that punitive action is warranted, the matter is referred to the Academic Integrity Committee in writing in the form of an Academic Dishonesty Incident Report, which is available in the Handbook for Faculty and Professional Staff. The faculty member may also include a recommendation for possible disciplinary action consistent with those listed in accordance with the University Student Code of Conduct.

In a case of determination of academic dishonesty related to a specific class assignment, such as an act of plagiarism or cheating on an exam, the faculty member must notify the student and explain the nature of the charge and the nature of the punishment to be imposed. The faculty member is authorized to choose from the following options for such an offense:

  • Having the student rewrite the assignment, with or without a grade penalty
  • Giving the student an "F" or a zero for the assignment or a portion of the assignment
  • Giving the student an "F" for the course, if justified by the seriousness of the offense

Should the professor feel the incident needs further action, he or she may refer the student to the Academic Integrity Committee by filing an Academic Dishonesty Incident Report Form detailing the infraction with the Chairperson of the committee.

A student accused of academic dishonesty is afforded due process and has the right to request a hearing, in writing, to the Dean of their College, who will in turn refer the matter to the Academic Integrity Committee. All students charged have the right to have legal counsel present during that hearing. In adjudicating the case, if the Academic Integrity Committee finds the student guilty, it may impose the following action(s):

  • No further action
  • Written reprimand
  • Disciplinary suspension for one or more semesters
  • Expulsion
  • Other penalties as appropriate

A decision rendered in a hearing by the Academic Integrity Committee will be conveyed in writing to the student, the accusing professor, and the Provost. The student may appeal the decision in writing to the Provost no later than five working days after being notified of the committee's decision. Assistance of legal counsel is also a right of the student during the appeals process.

Cases of academic dishonesty will be pursued under this policy regardless of when they are discovered, and grades and diplomas may be rescinded as a result.

October 14, 2008; Rev. April 24, 2009; November 13, 2012; January 8, 2016; January 17, 2017


Official Student Records

Access to Student Records

Attention of all students, their parents, and UWA alumni is called to the provisions of Public Law 93-380, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, also known as "The Buckley Amendment." Under the provisions of this law, all students and former students of the University have the right to inspect their official educational records in the Office of the Registrar. This right of inspection does not apply to any information submitted to this office as confidential prior to January 1, 1975, nor to access by students to financial records of parents. Parents or guardians of a student may not see records nor receive any grades unless the student specifically designates that records and/or grades may be made available to the parents or guardians.

Information classified as "Directory Information" may be released by the University unless a student specifically informs the Registrar in writing that written consent is necessary before even this information may be released. "Directory Information" includes the following:

  1. Name, address, telephone listing
  2. Date and place of birth
  3. Major and minor fields of study
  4. Participation in officially recognized athletics and other activities, including weight and height of members of athletic teams
  5. Dates of attendance
  6. Degrees and awards received
  7. The most recent previous educational institution attended.

Other information from a student's record will be released only to UWA officials, including teachers, who have legitimate educational interests, unless the student has given written consent for the release of specific information to others. For example, such a request as the release of a student's grade-point average to other students for consideration of eligibility for a student organization will not be honored by the Registrar's Office unless the student involved has specifically requested the release of this information.

Students who have questions regarding their official records should address them to the Registrar.

Transcripts of Credit

In compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, UWA does not release transcripts of a student's work at the University without the student's authorization. A student may secure an unofficial transcript for his/her own use, but official transcripts are sent only to other colleges or organizations for reference purposes. Students may request transcripts here. In addition, ordering kiosks are set up in the Registrar's Office for your convenience.

For electronic delivery: There is a $3.50 processing fee per transcript charged by National Student Clearinghouse.

For paper delivery: Costs of transcripts that are mailed will vary depending on shipping method (standard or expedited).

Transcripts are not issued for students who have holds on their accounts or who have outstanding obligations to the University.

Service Members Opportunity College

In cooperation with thirteen higher education associations and a large number of colleges and universities, UWA is a part of the network of four-year Service Members Opportunity Colleges, designed to provide opportunities for men and women in the armed services of the United States to pursue educational programs and complete degrees through a variety of traditional and non-traditional means. Among the features of this program are flexible entrance requirements, increased study opportunities, opportunities for completion of interrupted work, special academic assistance, credit for certain in-service educational experiences, and adaptable requirements.

Members of the armed services desiring more information should write to the Registrar's Office, Station 55, the University of West Alabama, Livingston, Alabama 35470.

Cooperative Education Program

The University of West Alabama offers a program in Cooperative Education to promote opportunities for students to gain work experience in their chosen field of study. The program enables the student to combine classroom instruction with practical experience in business, industry, government, or service organizations. This program is available to qualified students in select majors. To qualify, a student must have completed 24 semester hours (including at least one full semester at the University of West Alabama), be in good standing with the University and have a 2.5 or above grade point average, have a minimum of three semesters remaining before graduation, and have declared a major. The student must also attend an Employability Seminar offered by appointment in the Career Services Office. Some employers have additional requirements.

Students may choose one of two options when available. The first option, the Alternating Option, allows a student to alternate semesters of full-time work and full-time study. The second option, the Parallel Option, allows a student to work part-time (15 to 20 hours a week) while enrolled as a full-time student.

In addition to the above qualifications, a student must register for the appropriate non-credit Cooperative Education course (CEP) each work term and pay the materials fee. Students must comply with the policies and procedures of the employer and the Cooperative Education Program. Interested students may apply in the Career Services Office in Foust Hall 7.

Statewide Articulation Reporting System

UWA participates in the Statewide Articulation Reporting System (STARS) program. STARS is a computerized articulation and transfer planning system designed to inform students who attend Alabama community colleges about degree requirements, course equivalents, and other transfer information pertaining to specific majors at each State-funded four-year institution. STARS is an efficient and effective way of providing students, counselors, and educators with accurate information upon which transfer decisions can be made. STARS is the information link between the State's public two-year and four-year institutions. The STARS database, if used properly, can prevent the loss of course credit hours, can provide direction for the scheduling of course work, and can ease the transition from one institution to another. Students who are interested in receiving a "Transfer Guide & Contract" should log on to the Internet and access the AGSC/STARS Home Page at http://stars.troy.edu or they may contact the Registrar's Office at the University of West Alabama (205) 652-3587.