Feb 23, 2024  
2009-2011 Undergraduate Catalog 
2009-2011 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academic Policies


Privacy of Student Records

Winston-Salem State University adheres to a policy of permitting a student access to his or her education records and certain confidential financial  information. A student may request review of any information contained in the records and may, using appropriate procedures, challenge their content. In accordance with public law 93-380, Winston-Salem State University prohibits the release of personally identifiable information from official student academic records other than that specified as “directory information.”

“Directory information” includes a student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, major, sex, marital status, dates of attendance, degree, honors, previous institutions, participation in recognized sports and activities, and physical factors.

Any student may restrict the release of personal information usually included in campus directories. A written request must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar one week before the beginning of classes for each semester. An explanation of the complete policy on education records may be obtained from the Office of the Registrar.

Winston-Salem State University Policy on Release of Student Information

This statement establishes guidelines for Winston-Salem State University on the matter of confidentiality of student records. It has been developed in accordance with The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (Buckley Amendment) concerning access to and the release of information contained in records in institutions of higher learning.

This policy covers all records maintained at Winston-Salem State University and applies to any student who has completed the registration process at any time.

Confidentiality of Student Information

  1. The University will release only “directory information” in response to inquiries from the general public without written permission from the student. “Directory information” includes: student’s name, address, telephone number, date and place of birth, major, sex, marital status, dates of attendance, degree, honors, previous institutions, participation in recognized sports and activities, and physical factors.
  2. Transcripts are released only with a written request from the student and if there is no financial indebtedness to the university.
  3. A student may review the contents of his or her educational records. Transcripts sent or delivered to Winston-Salem State University from other institutions become the property of the university and will not be returned or released.
  4. The University is unable to honor requests from parents or guardians for academic or personal information (“directory information” as defined can be transmitted) without written permission from the student unless evidence can be presented of the student’s dependent status as defined by the Internal Revenue Code.
  5. Education records requested by officials of other institutions where a student intends to enroll may be forwarded. The student is not notified of the release of the information.
  6. All questions concerning the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 should be directed to the Office of the Registrar at Winston-Salem State University.

Academic Probation and Suspension Policy

Academic probation is the condition that allows students to continue their enrollment at Winston-Salem State University after failing to meet minimum academic standards as calculated at the end of each semester and at the end of each summer session.

In order to graduate from Winston-Salem State University, a student must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0. Additionally, minimum GPA requirements have been established for students to continue in good academic standing. To remain in good academic standing, a student must maintain a cumulative GPA, from grades earned at WSSU, as follows: 

Quality Hours Earned*                                     Minimum Cumulative GPA**

0-15                                                                 ≥ 1.70
16-29                                                               ≥ 1.80
30 - 59                                                             ≥ 1.90
≥ 60                                                                 ≥ 2.00 

*at WSSU and transfer hours
**Earned from WSSU courses

Failure to remain in good academic standing will automatically place students on academic probation for the following semester. 

Academic Probation

Students placed on academic probation and those for whom current suspensions were rescinded are required to adjust their current semester schedules to:

  • Repeat courses in which grades of F have been earned at WSSU if the courses are being taught that semester
  • Repeat courses in which grades of D have been earned unless excused by their academic advisor
  • Register for a maximum of 13 semester hours
  • Meet with a Retention Counselor regularly to receive one-on-one guidance and support.

Failure to comply with this requirement will result in immediate suspension.

A student may stay on Academic Probation for a maximum of two semesters. A student must attend Winston-Salem State University to remove the condition of Academic Probation. Therefore, transfer credit cannot be used to clear a probationary status. Students should refer to the progression policies in their disciplines (especially in the Health Sciences), and ROTC participants should contact the Military Science Program for additional rules that apply to them.

Academic Suspension 

Failure to meet the required GPA after two consecutive semesters of Academic Probation will result in Academic Suspension from WSSU for a period of two regular term semesters (Fall/Spring or Spring/Fall).

Suspension will also result if any of the following occur:

1. A student receives a grade of F in all courses attempted in a semester beyond the first semester at the university;

2. A student falsifies his/her application.

Students who have been suspended for earning all Fs in one semester may appeal through the Suspension Appeal process.

A student who has been suspended may take courses during the summer session at WSSU in order to improve the GPA. A student cannot use transfer credit, however, to clear the suspension. After completing the suspension period, a student may reapply for admission. If the student is readmitted and continues with a GPA below that which qualifies for good academic standing, then the student is considered to be on Academic Probation and again has two semesters to address the GPA.

Students placed on academic suspension for a second time will be suspended for a period of three (3) consecutive academic years. After the three year suspension, the suspended student may apply for readmission and may be eligible to benefit from the Academic Forgiveness Policy.


Registration dates are listed on the academic calendar posted on the university’s Web site. All students must register at the beginning of each semester whether they were in attendance the preceding semester or not. This applies also to students whose schedules include courses that will not begin until mid-semester (blocked courses).

Students are responsible for complying with all regulations governing registration, change of program, payment of fees, and other registration requirements either described in this catalog or advised otherwise by the administration. Registration procedures can be found on the university’s website for each semester and summer sessions.

Failure to complete the registration process and to pay all fees by the close of the registration period will result in the assessment of a late registration fee and cancellation of schedules. No student will be permitted to register later than the time specified on the calendar.

Changes in Registration

Courses of study should be carefully planned under the guidance of the academic advisor so that changes in registration will not be necessary. After a student has completed registration, changes may be made only by means of a registration change form. The courses for which a student is registered at the close of the registration period constitute his/her official registration and course load for the semester. No student will receive credit for any course or courses for which he/she has not properly registered and paid.

Dropping Courses After the Close of Registration

A student may officially drop courses from his/her schedule until the end of the drop period.  The date for each semester appears on the academic calendar.

Course Loads

A normal load for a regular student is15 semester hours. A special student may take up to 12 SH. Students may not register at any other institution when in regular attendance here unless proper approval has been secured, in which case the hours taken will be considered a part of the normal load. This includes correspondence and/or extension work.

Full-time students are those who register for a minimum of 12 SH of credit in a given semester. The maximum course load is 18 SH. No student is permitted to take more than 18 SH unless he/she has a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better. Students who are on probation are required to carry a reduced load of no more than 13 SH.


Persons who wish to audit courses will follow regular admission and registration procedures and are governed by the same regulations applied to regular students. An auditor pays the regular course fees, but does not take examinations or receive a grade. Students once registered for “audit” are not permitted to change to “credit” and vice versa after the close of the period for making changes in the program.

Credits, Grades, Grade Points

The university calendar is organized on the semester basis. All credit is computed in terms of semester hours. A semester hour is the equivalent of prepared work for one hour per week for a semester of approximately 18 weeks.

The student’s work in any course will be rated for quality by letters of the alphabet.



4 grade points per semester hour


Above average

3 grade points per semester hour



2 grade points per semester hour



1 grade point per semester hour



0 grade points



This temporary grade is given when the student has not completed the work of the course because of illness or some other acceptable reason beyond the control of the student. It is the student’s responsibility to make arrangements with the instructor for the removal of the incomplete grade. All incomplete grades must be removed by mid-term of the next semester if the student is enrolled or within one year if the student is not enrolled. If work is not completed, the department chair awards the alternate grade recommended by the instructor at the time that the I grade was awarded.



Student receives credit but no grade points.


W, W/P, W/F

These grades are given when a student officially withdraws from the class.

Mid-Semester and Final Grade Reports

Mid-semester reports are issued for all courses in which the student is enrolled. End-of-semester reports are issued to all students at the close of each semester.

Final grades are reported to the Office of the Registrar not later than 48 hours after the examination in each course is given, except on the last day of the examination period.

Grade Appeal Policy (for Final Grade)                 

I.          Statement of Purpose.

The purpose of the grade appeal process is to provide a mechanism for student appeal of a final course grade that was given for impermissible or arbitrary reasons. Students who believe their final course grade was determined by a standard different from the standard used for other students in their class will be able to file a grade appeal. The grade appeal policy only applies to the appeal of a final course grade and not individual graded assignments. Grades that were given as a result of alleged violations of the student academic integrity policy cannot be appealed under the grade appeal policy. Appeal of decision under the academic integrity policy should be made according to the provisions of that policy.  The appeal of grades that were given as a result of charges of sexual harassment should be filed with the Sexual Harassment Committee.                             

There shall be one policy for the appeal of a final course grade. All undergraduate students will follow this policy when appealing a final course grade. However, students in the School of Health Sciences and in other professional programs may appeal other academic concerns (program dismissals, dismissals from clinicals, etc.) using established guidelines outlined in their divisional/departmental handbooks. 

II.            Responsibility of Faculty and Students.

A.           Faculty Responsibility. The faculty sets the evaluation standards for the courses they teach and use these standards in determining the grades on individual assignments and final course grades. Faculty members are responsible for including information in their course syllabi about all course requirements, all assignments/activities that will be graded and the method that will be used to evaluate each assignment, and the grading scale that will be used to determine the final grade. The course syllabi should be distributed to each student enrolled in a class. In the event that the faculty member decides to make changes in the course requirements and in methods and standards for evaluating a particular course, this information shall be shared in writing or orally with all students in the class prior to making an assignment. Faculty members are responsible for using previously established standards to grade all course assignments regardless of a student’s race, color, creed, national origin, sex, age, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, or other personal characteristics. Faculty members are obligated to meet with students regarding contested grades and to explain how the grades were determined.  

B.           Student Responsibility. The student is responsible for discussing any graded assignments that he/she believes were given due to error, or for impermissible or arbitrary reasons with the faculty member during the semester the grade is given. Students are responsible for being aware of all university policies regarding academic integrity issues as published in the undergraduate catalog and codes of conduct in the Student Handbook

III. Impermissible Grounds for Grading.

Impermissible or arbitrary grounds for assigning a grade are:

1.  The final course grade was assigned in a manner not consistent with the standards and procedures stated in Section IIA and III; or

2.  The final course grade was based upon the student’s race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, disability, veteran status or sexual orientation; or

3.  The final course grade was assigned because of personal malice towards the student; or

4.  The final course grade was the result of an error in calculating or recording grades.

Individual graded assignments that contribute to a final course grade are not subject to appeal unless it can be established that the grade for the individual assignment was given for one of the four impermissible reasons cited above, and resulted in an unfair final grade.

 IV. Grade Appeal Process

A.   A student must initiate the grade appeal process for a contested final grade no later than the last day to add (10th class day) a course during the fall or spring semester, immediately following the term in which the final grade was issued by completing a grade appeal form, and by submitting a written request for discussion with the faculty member. For a grade appeal to be considered by the grade appeal committee, it must be based upon one of the impermissible grounds listed in Section III, when the appeal is first filed. The student cannot refile the same appeal and use a different set of impermissible grounds (See Section VI.2).

 B. Student appeals to faculty

 C. Faculty meets with student and informs student and chair of decision

 D. If not resolved student appeal to department chair.

 E. If not resolved at department chair’s level, appeal goes to dean who forwards appeal to Grade Appeal Committee.

 Forms to file a final grade appeal can be found on the university’s Web site: www.wssu.edu.

 Approved by the WSSU Board of Trustees June 18, 2010

Dean’s List

Eligibility to be named on the Dean’s List at the end of each semester shall be based on status as a full-time student (12 SH and above), with a grade point average of 3.00 or better for the semester, with no grade below C and no incomplete (I) grades on the report.

Change of Grade

A grade once reported to the Office of the Registrar may be changed upon the authorization of the faculty member issuing the original grade and the approval of the appropriate dean. A change of grade is made by filing a change of grade form. The reason for the change of grade shall be entered on the form and signed by the faculty member, department chair, and dean and filed with the registrar.

Repetition of Course

Courses taken at Winston-Salem State University may be repeated only twice; i.e., a course may be taken a maximum of three times. If the policy of a particular academic major or minor is to allow fewer than two repeats of a course, then students in that major or minor are obliged to follow the more restrictive policy of that academic department.

Only courses in which D’s and F’s were earned may be repeated.

The highest grade earned in an approved repeated course is used in computing the grade point average (GPA). Other grades for the same course will be on the record but will not be counted in the GPA.

A student who has audited a course may subsequently repeat the course for credit with the permission of his/her dean. Repeated registration in a course is allowed if the course description so states. A student may enroll only once in a specific course during a given semester. All students must adhere to the policies of their respective programs.

Classification of Students

Students are classified as freshmen, sophomores, juniors, or seniors according to the total number of credits their official records in the Office of the Registrar show they have earned by the close of the preceding term.

Freshmen—those having fewer than 30 SH
Sophomores—those having 30 to 59 SH
Juniors—those having 60 to 89 SH
Seniors—those having 90 or more SH


Withdrawal Policy for Undergraduates


Students may find it necessary to withdraw from courses or the university after the university’s course adjustment period (Registration/Add/Drop) each semester.

Course Withdrawal

A student may terminate enrollment in a course but continue enrollment in other courses within the timeframes outlined in the University Withdrawal section. A student enrolled in only one course must withdraw officially from the University to withdraw from the course.

University Withdrawal

A student may officially withdraw from the university without academic penalty until the end of the ninth week of class of a fall or spring semester; the 12th day of a summer school session; or the 21st day of an eight week block (see Academic Calendar for specific date each term). The student will receive a grade of “W” for each course in which they were enrolled. Students who find they need to withdraw from the university must submit a signed request to the Registrar.

The withdrawal becomes effective on the date that the Registrar receives the request to withdraw.

No student may withdraw after the official withdrawal period unless there are extenuating circumstances. A student may petition the appropriate dean in writing (including appropriate supporting documentation) for a “W” (Withdrawal) if there are extenuating circumstances which prevent the student from continuing enrollment (health, medical, legal or administrative reasons).

Withdrawals will not be granted after grades for courses are posted. The “W” grade will be assigned for courses if the following conditions are met:

1. The dean approves of the petition because it is for extenuating circumstances, and

2. The student is deemed to be passing at the time of the withdrawal by the course instructor

and thus is not using the petition to avoid a failing grade, and

3. The petition is received before the grade due date for that term.

The dean must notify the student within 10 business days of the decision. Students can appeal a decision of the dean by appealing to the provost in writing within 10 business days of receiving a response from the dean. The provost must respond within 10 business days. The decision of the provost is final. All correspondence will be sent to the student’s permanent address that is on file with the Registrar.

Students should also understand that:

  • Withdrawal from classes may affect full-time status and thus financial aid and certain privileges.
  • The W grade does not affect the Grade Point Average but will remain on the transcript as an indication of students’ academic behavior. All courses students attempt are counted as attempted hours and affect calculations of Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid.
  • Students who stop attending class and do not complete the withdrawal process will be held accountable for all course work and will receive the earned grade at the end of the semester. Thus, a student who stops attending class but who fails to withdraw may earn a grade of “F”.
  • Students are responsible for addressing all financial obligations incurred during their enrollment, whether owed to the university, the federal government, or a lender.
  • A student should talk with the academic advisor or chairperson before initiating a withdrawal action.

Approved  by the WSSU Board of Trustees June 19, 2009.


Students are expected to attend all classes for which they are appropriately registered (see Class Attendance Policy). The purpose of this policy is to give academic administrators a way to remove students from classes that they are not attending or for which they do not have the appropriate prerequisites. Administrative withdrawals may affect students’ status as full-time students and thus affect financial aid status, campus housing, student fees, student athlete status, etc.


Department chairs and deans may initiate an administrative withdrawal of a student from classes based on the following criteria:

  • For face-to-face classes - the student has not attended class nor made contact with the instructor or department chair to explain the absence by the end of the first day the class meets or the student misses two consecutive classes and has not made contact with the instructor or department chair to explain the absence;
  • For a technology-delivered course - the student has not engaged the course material or made contact with the instructor to explain the absence by the first assessment;
  • The student has not met course prerequisites, co-requisites, or registration restrictions.

The department chair or dean will electronically notify the student that they are being withdrawn from the class and then follow the required procedures to notify the Registrar. The Registrar will electronically notify the student when the withdrawal has been completed.


Students who have been administratively withdrawn from classes

  1. for failure to attend or notify the instructor and have evidence that they in fact were attending classes or had contacted the instructor or department chair to notify them of an absence (dated email will suffice) or;
  2. who were so incapacitated by illness or injury as to not be able to contact the university; or
  3. for not having the appropriate prerequisites;

have the right to appeal the withdrawal. Students must appeal in writing and attach supporting documentation (email will suffice) within two business days of the withdrawal to the dean of the college or school where the course resides if the department chair initiated the withdrawal or the provost if the dean initiated the withdrawal. The dean or provost will make a decision within two business days and inform the student in writing (electronic notification is permissible) followed by hard copy). Only one level of appeal is allowed so decisions of the dean or provost (depending on where the appeal was made) are final.

Adopted by WSSU Board of Trustees  June 19, 2009

Final Examinations

Final examinations are held at the close of each term. The examinations are required of all students. Any student who is not present for an examination at the hour appointed forfeits the right to take the examination and will be considered as having failed on that part of the work unless excused for reasons deemed sufficient by the department chair.

Special examinations are given only to students who, for adequate reasons, have not been able to be present at the regular examination. The privilege of taking special examinations is granted by the provost.

Calculation of Grade Point Average

Comprehensive evaluation of the student’s academic standing is indicated in the grade point average. A grade point average is computed by dividing the total number of grade points earned at WSSU by the total number of hours attempted at WSSU (passed and failed). When a course has been repeated, only the credits earned and points of the higher grade earned are counted. Since a C (2.00) average is required for graduation (see requirements for all baccalaureate degrees), a student’s record should reflect progress toward that level of achievement. Pass/Fail courses are not used in the computation of the grade point average.


1.            The attendance record begins with the first meeting of the class, and students who register late are responsible for class work missed.

2.        WSSU expects each student to take responsibility for his or her academic work and academic progress, including adherence to the attendance requirements of each instructor.

3.        The instructor of the class is the ultimate authority for determining whether an absence from class or academic activity is excused or unexcused. Students should contact their instructors as soon as possible when a class is missed, and should expect that instructors will require documentation supporting the reason for any absence.

4.        Each instructor will clearly delineate his/her attendance policy in the course syllabus, including any direct correlation between class attendance and grade determination, and policies related to missed assignments (i.e., exam make-up policy).

5.        Even when an instructor excuses a student’s absence, or when the student is absent because of participation in an approved extracurricular activity or when representing the university in an official, approved capacity, the student is responsible for the material covered in all missed classes. This may include making up any missed assignments or completing additional assignments deemed necessary by the instructor as relevant to the content of the missed session.

6.        In cases of emergencies involving extended absences from class, the affected student should contact the Counseling Center. Counseling Center staff will then notify the student’s instructors regarding the absence.

7.        Students who miss classes as a result of such symptoms as fatigue, exhaustion, fear, tension, anxiety, anger, or unexplainable illness should also seek assistance through the Counseling Center.

Registration at Another Institution

Any student desiring to receive credit toward graduation for courses taken at any other institution must secure in advance the approval of the department chair in the department where the course is taught and the dean of the student’s major area. This approval must be documented on the form: “Permission to Take a Course at Another Institution.”

The institution at which the work is done must be fully accredited. A student who has earned 64 SH at a two-year institution cannot earn additional credit from a two-year institution. For credit, the courses must be completed at the C level or higher. The student is responsible for requesting that an official copy of his/her transcript is mailed to the Registrar at Winston-Salem State University as soon as the courses are completed.

Change of Name and Address

It is the obligation of every student to notify the Office of the Registrar of any change in name and address. Failure to do so can cause serious delay in the handling of student records and in notification of emergencies at home.

Class Attendance and Absence Policy

Student Responsibilities:

1. Students are required to attend class, whether face to face or virtually, and complete assignments as set forth in the class syllabus. 

2. Students are responsible for checking their registration status and should print a hard copy for their records after the change of registration (add/drop) period is completed.

Students who are not officially enrolled (includes payment or arrangement for payment) at the end of the add/drop period will not be eligible to receive a grade for the class.

Faculty Responsibilities:

1. Faculty members are required to monitor attendance.

2. During the change of registration period, faculty members should

           a. alert students if they do not appear on the official roll and require the students to complete the registration process;

            b. alert the registrar about students whose names appear on the roll but never attend class.

3. At the mid-term and final grading periods, faculty members are to notify the registrar of students who stop attending class by entering the date of the last day the student attended class on the grade roster.

Students who have not attended class nor made contact with the instructor to explain the absence by the end of the first day the class meets or the first assessment (technology delivered classes only) may be administratively dropped from the course.


1. The attendance record begins with the first meeting of the class, and students who register during the add/drop period are responsible for missed work.

2. The instructor of the class is the ultimate authority for determining whether an absence from class or academic activity is excused or unexcused. Students should contact their instructors before an anticipated absence or as soon as possible when a class is missed. Instructors will require documentation supporting the reason for any absence.

3. Emergencies involving extended absences from class should be communicated to the academic advisor or department chair who will work with the registrar to notify the student’s faculty. The advisor should also work with the student to make a decision about course withdrawal or withdrawal from the university.

4. The attendance requirements and allowances to make up missed work should be clearly delineated in the course syllabus, including any impact absences will have on grades.

5. Even when an instructor excuses a student’s absence, or when the student is absent because of participation in a university approved activity, the student is responsible for all material and assignments missed due to the absence.

Approved by the WSSU Board of Trustees June 19, 2009

 Academic Forgiveness Policy

Academic Forgiveness is the process by which previously enrolled students may seek to remove the negative impact of unsatisfactory grades previously earned at Winston-Salem State University. Academic Forgiveness is granted only once, and may be requested by students returning to WSSU after an absence of three (3) or more consecutive calendar years. Students applying for Academic Forgiveness are required to meet with an advisor in their college/school to demonstrate full understanding of this policy and to develop a plan for academic improvement.

To be eligible for Academic Forgiveness, a student must:

  1. Be readmitted to the University after an absence of at least (3) consecutive calendar years.
  2. Have attempted at least 12 letter-graded semester hours since re-admission (pass/fail or audited courses are excluded). Attempted hours include all courses that contribute to the GPA, including those for which the student received credit by earning grades of A, B, C, or D or for which the student did not receive credit due to grades of F, W or I.
  3. Have earned at least a 2.3 grade-point average in all courses attempted since re-admission.
  4. Request Academic Forgiveness in writing from the Office of the Registrar. This request must be submitted prior to the end of the semester immediately following the semester in which the 12 letter-graded semester hours have been attempted.

    1. After the student requests Academic Forgiveness and after eligibility is verified, the following adjustments are made to the student’s academic record:

      1.  All grades earned at WSSU prior to re-entry are excluded from the calculation of the GPA (i.e., “forgiven”).
      2. Credit hours earned for courses prior to re-entry with the grade of at least “P” or “C” are retained.
      3. Credit hours earned for courses prior to re-entry with a grade of “D” are not retained.
      4. Each grade that is subject to this policy will remain on the official transcript, but will be noted as “forgiven.”
    2. All grades, including those that have been forgiven, will not be allowed to qualify students for eligibility membership in honor societies and graduation with honors.
    3. Students are not eligible for GPA improvements under the Course Repeat Policy after Academic Forgiveness has been applied.
    4. A student who has been granted Academic Forgiveness must earn a minimum of 30 credit hours from the point of re-admission to be eligible to receive a baccalaureate degree.
    5. Any academic probations, suspensions, or dismissals from forgiven semesters will not be forgiven. They will count when the Unsatisfactory Academic Progress Policy is applied to the student’s record after re-admission.
    6. The conditions of the Academic Forgiveness Policy cannot be appealed.

 Academic Integrity

  1. Definition

Winston-Salem State University puts forth every reasonable effort to maintain academic integrity in the instructional program. To compromise integrity through acts of academic dishonesty seriously jeopardizes the quality of instruction and the caliber of education we purport to provide our students. Such dishonesty includes:

  1. Cheating—Intentionally and knowingly using unauthorized materials, information, or study aids in any academic exercise or matter.
  2. Plagiarism—Intentionally and knowingly representing in any academic exercise or matter the words or ideas of another as one’s own.
  3. Fabrication—Intentionally and knowingly falsifying or inventing information or citations in an academic exercise.
  4. Facilitating Academic Dishonesty—Intentionally and knowingly helping or attempting to help another to commit an act of cheating, plagiarism, or fabrication.
  1. Procedures

The following procedures shall apply to situations where students are accused by faculty of engaging in acts of academic dishonesty.

  1. The instructor of the course shall report all allegations of academic dishonesty to the department chair. (In cases where the department chair is the instructor, allegations should be reported directly to the dean.)
  2. The chair shall review the case to determine if there is reason to believe that academic dishonesty may be involved.
  3. If such a reason exists, the chair shall then refer the case to the dean of his or her school/college along with other pertinent information.
  4. The dean shall then consult with the student involved. If the act of academic dishonesty is admitted, the dean shall check with the assistant vice chancellor for student affairs to determine if the student has any record of prior offenses involving academic dishonesty. If it is the student’s first violation, the dean may dispose of the charges provided the penalty is accepted by the student in writing. In such cases, a written report of the matter, including the action taken, shall be sent to the assistant vice chancellor for student affairs for inclusion in the student’s file. If the student does not accept the penalty imposed by the dean, he or she has the option of being heard by the Committee on Academic Integrity consistent with the provisions below beginning at Section II.6.
  5. If there is insufficient evidence or reason to believe that a violation has not occurred, a report shall be written and maintained by the dean but not included in the student’s file.
  6. If the case is not resolved in the manner specified above, the dean shall inform the standing Committee on Academic Integrity. The committee shall consist of seven (7) faculty members, five (5) regulars and two (2) alternates, selected by the Faculty Senate. The academic ranks of the regular faculty members shall include one (1) assistant professor, two (2) associate professors, and two (2) professors. The academic ranks of the alternates shall be one (1) assistant professor and one (1) associate professor or professor. The committee also shall include four (4) students, two (2) regulars and two (2) alternates, selected by the Student Government Association. A chair shall be elected from the faculty on the committee. Members shall serve for one academic year.
  7. The committee shall hear the allegation, following the hearing procedures outlined in Section III of this policy.
  1. Hearing Guidelines

  1. Those students/respondents entitled to a hearing shall be informed of the specific charges against them in writing by the committee chair at least five (5) days in advance.
  2. A hearing panel shall consist of four (4) faculty members and two (2) students drawn from the committee by the chair. A faculty member serving on the panel and elected by the panel members shall serve as the presiding officer, but shall not vote.
  3. Respondents may be accompanied and assisted by a representative. Representatives cannot take part in the hearing, but may advise the respondent.
  4. The complainant shall be the referring faculty member who may be accompanied by the department chair, program coordinator, or other department official.
  5. Hearings must be transcribed, at the expense of the department, to ensure sufficient review on appeal.
  6. The hearing shall be under the control of the panel chair. Evidence and testimony that is immaterial or repetitive shall not be allowed.
  7. Prospective witnesses, other than the complainant, respondent, and representatives, shall be excluded from the hearing during the testimony of other witnesses.
  8. The complainant shall present evidence first, followed by the respondent who shall offer rebuttal. Evidence may be oral or written.
  9. The respondent and complainant shall be accorded an opportunity to cross-examine witnesses who testify for the other party.
  10. The burden of proof shall be upon the complainant who must establish the guilt of the respondent by a preponderance of the evidence.
  11. Affidavits shall not be admitted into evidence unless signed by the affiant and witnessed by a notary public.
  12. The final decision of the panel as to guilt or innocence shall be by simple majority vote.
  13. A determination of guilt shall be followed by a supplementary proceeding in which either party may submit evidence or make statements concerning the appropriate sanction to be imposed. The disciplinary record of the respondent shall be made available for purposes of the supplementary proceeding.
  14. The final decision of the panel as to a penalty shall be by simple majority vote.
  15. The sanctions specified by the panel are regarded as recommendations.
  16. The recommendation of the committee is transmitted to the vice chancellor for academic affairs who accepts or rejects the penalty and informs the respondent of his/her decision. The decision of the vice chancellor, both as to guilt and degree of penalty, may be appealed to the chancellor; the decision of the chancellor may be appealed to the Board of Trustees. The decision of the Board of Trustees is final.
  1. Penalties

Any respondent who commits an act of academic dishonesty, including a first offense, shall be penalized based on the infractions by the following sanctions. These sanctions are intended to offer
guidance to those responsible for recommending penalties. The direction is toward the imposition of more serious disciplinary measures in serious cases.

Reprimand—The respondent is reprimanded in writing by the dean who warns the student of the seriousness of the infraction and the importance of maintaining academic integrity. Reduction in Grade—The respondent may receive a reduced, but not failing, grade for either the academic exercise, the course, or both. The grade actually earned by the student shall be reduced by only one grade. This penalty must be accompanied by a reprimand to be included in the student’s file.

Failing Grade—The respondent may receive a grade of F for either the academic exercise or the course. When a grade of F is recommended for the course, a grade of F is automatically applied to the academic exercise. This penalty must be accompanied by a reprimand to be included in the student’s file.

Suspension—Suspension from the university for a period not to exceed one semester, or portion thereof (not including summer sessions), may be recommended by the panel. The minimal period of a recommended suspension shall be the remainder of the current semester. In all such cases, respondents shall be withdrawn administratively from the university and a W inserted on their transcripts next to each course in which they are enrolled. At the end of the suspension period, the respondent may return to the university under the provisions for returning students contained in the university catalog. This penalty shall be accompanied by a written reprimand to be included in the student’s file.

Expulsion—A recommendation from the panel for expulsion indicates that the respondent shall be withdrawn from the university. In instances of expulsion, the respondent may, after two semesters (not including summer sessions), apply for re-admittance through written correspondence to the vice chancellor for academic affairs who, after reviewing the record, shall act upon the request and inform the respondent of the decision. The decision of the vice chancellor for academic affairs may be appealed to the chancellor; the decision of the chancellor may be appealed to the Board of Trustees. The decision of the Board of Trustees is final. Disciplinary records for any act of academic dishonesty are maintained indefinitely. These records are considered part of a student’s file and referred to when requests from prospective disciplinary records of respondents.

  1. Suggestions for Faculty and Staff

  1. Educate students about academic offenses and penalties. For example, copying laboratory assignments constitutes a violation of this policy.
  2. Outline expectations on the course syllabus for academic integrity.
  3. Keep examinations in a secure location.
  4. Carefully proctor examinations.
  5. Implement methods for preventing plagiarism.
  6. Verify faculty signatures on grade change forms.
  7. Assign all grades in ink.

Note: Policy was approved by the Board of Trustees on October 17, 1992. 

Assessment of Prior Learning Assessment and Special Credit

The university recognizes that all learning does not take place in a classroom and has made provisions to evaluate such learning and award credit when appropriate. Students with prior college level learning gained outside the traditional college classroom may receive credit for that learning by several means of assessment. Among the most common measures are advanced placement, the College-Level Examination Program (CLEP ) examinations, and course challenges and proficiency examinations. Military veterans may also receive academic credit in health and physical education and courses taken while in the Armed Services. Where specific policies are not identified, prior learning related to the student’s educational program may be reviewed and credit awarded at the discretion of the appropriate academic department. Please contact the Adult Student Services Office at (336) 750-2505 for additional information.

 Advanced Placement

Winston-Salem State University participates in the Advanced Placement Program of the College Entrance Examination Board. Students who receive a score of 3 or higher on advanced placement tests may receive both credit and advanced placement. In addition, students may earn advanced credit through the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. Students who receive a score of 5 or higher on the IB exam may receive both credit and advanced placement. Also, college level courses taken in high school may be given credit after review by the appropriate department of the university, following the enrollment of the student.

International Baccalaureate Credit Policy

Winston-Salem State University endorses the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program and awards credit for IB Higher Level scores in the following subjects:

Biology (Higher Level) - A score of 5 will earn credit for BIO 1301 (3 hours); a score of 6 or 7 will earn credit for BIO 1301 (3 hours) and BIO 1312 (3 hours).

Chemistry (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for CHE 2311 (3 hours) and CHE 2111 (1 hour) and for CHE 2312 (3 hours) and CHE 2112 (1 hour).

Computer Science (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for CSC 1306 (3 hours).

Economics (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for ECO 2311 (3 hours) and ECO 2312 (3 hours).

English (Higher Level) - A score of 5 will earn credit for ENG 1301 (3 hours); a score of 6 or 7 will earn credit for EN G 1301 (3 hours) and EN G 1302 (3 hours).

French (Higher Level) - A score of 5 will earn credit for EN G 1301 (3 hours); a score of 6 or 7 will earn credit for FRE 2311 (3 hours) and FRE 2312 (3 hours).

Geography (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for GEO 2311 (3 hours).

History of the Americas (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for HIS 2306 (3 hours) and HIS 2307 (3 hours).

Mathematics (Higher Level) - A score of 5 will earn credit for MAT 2410 (4 hours); a score of 6 or 7 will earn credit for MAT 2410 (4 hours) and MAT 2411 (4 hours).

Philosophy (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for PHI 2301 (3 hours).

Physics (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for PHY 2321 (3 hours) and PHY 2121 (1 hour) and for PHY 2322 (3 hours) and PHY 2122 (1 hour).

Psychology (Higher Level) - A score of 5, 6, or 7 will earn credit for PSY 2301 (3 hours).

Spanish (Higher Level) - A score of 5 will earn credit for SPA 2311; a score of 6 or 7 will earn credit for SPA 2311 (3 hours) and SPA 2312 (3 hours).

College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Winston-Salem State University participates in CLEP, a national program of credit-by-examination that offers students an opportunity to earn college credit by examination. CLEP offers two types of tests: General Examinations and Subject Examinations. University policies regarding CLEP are as follows:

  1. WSSU does not award credit for General Examinations.
  2. Students may earn a maximum of 36 SH of CLEP credit for subject examinations.
  3. WSSU recognizes the right of each academic department to determine the maximum number of additional credits to be earned via challenging examinations.
  4. Credit by examination cannot be used to meet the 30-hour residency requirement.
  5. A CLEP score may not be used for course credit once a student has earned a grade in that particular course.

Course credit earned via CLEP is granted by the Office of the Registrar upon receipt of official CLEP scores. The document entitled “Credit-by-Examination for College-Level Examination Program” describes minimum acceptable scores and number of credit hours awarded. This information may be secured from the Adult Student Services Office at (336) 750-2505, which administers the CLEP.

Proficiency Examinations

Credit may be given to students registered in the university on the basis of examinations taken prior to or after admission to the university. The level of achievement, which must be demonstrated by the student on these examinations in order to receive examination credit, shall be determined by the department in which the course for credit is taught. No grade points are allowed for courses in which credit by examination is given. The credit shall be assigned only upon the authorization of the head of the department in which the student is registered. All students must meet program requirements.

Credit for Service and for Education in the Armed Forces

The university recognizes for credit certain training and experience in the Armed Forces of the United States. The completion of military service in the Air Force, Army, Marine Corps or Navy, including basic or recruit training of more than one year’s duration is accepted for the general university requirement of three semester hours of credit in health and physical education upon presentation of evidence of honorable discharge or transfer to the Reserve component. College-level courses offered by accredited institutions and made available to military personnel through the Servicemen Opportunity College will be considered for transfer credit if a grade of C or better has been earned and if the courses are applicable to the student’s curriculum. A transcript must be sent to the Office of Admissions directly from the institution offering the course.

Re-admission after suspension or after an incomplete semester, whether caused by withdrawal or suspension, is not automatic. The re-admission process includes clearance by the divisions of Finance and Administration and Student Affairs. Nursing students must also consult the Dean of the School of Health Sciences.

Returning students on academic probation are required to report to the Counseling Center for academic counseling. The purpose of these sessions is to assist students in gaining full understanding of their academic standing as well as to determine the most effective means of clearing their probationary status. These requirements must be met and the appropriate forms must be signed before the Office of the Registrar can grant readmission.

Adult Students

Persons 24 years or older may be admitted as non-traditional students. Some of the University’s minimum admission requirements may be waived for this particular group. Prospective adult students should:

  1. Submit an application for admission with the non-refundable application fee. See Admission’s website at www.wssu.edu.
  2. Send official high school and/or college transcript(s) to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. High school equivalencies, such as the GED or Adult Diploma, may also be accepted.

Senior Citizens

Residents of North Carolina who are 65 or older and who meet appropriate admission requirements may enroll tuition-free on a space-available basis. The availability of class space cannot be determined until after registration. A valid driver’s license or birth certificate is required as proof of age. NOTE: Students are responsible for other applicable fees.