Jul 20, 2024  
2016-17 Catalog 
2016-17 Catalog FINAL VERSION - Closed for Revisions

Academic Policies

Office of the Registrar

Ed Lee, Registrar
Anne Eckenrod, Associate Registrar
Room 101, Student Services Center (SSC)
1108 Fremont Street
Phone: 715-346-4301
Email: registrar@uwsp.edu
Web: www.uwsp.edu/regrec/  


Each UW-Stevens Point student has an academic adviser. Once you are accepted into a major, the chair of your major department assigns you to an adviser. If you have more than one major you should have an adviser for each program.

Your adviser will inform you of academic requirements, policies, and procedures; assist you in identifying and pursuing your educational and career goals; review and monitor your progress toward those goals; and make appropriate referrals to university programs and services.

Ultimately however, it is your responsibility to meet all university requirements, rules, and regulations.

You must meet with your adviser each semester to discuss your course of study. Your adviser must also approve and electronically authorize your course choices for the upcoming semester so that you can register for classes.

College of Natural Resources majors: If you are a freshman or sophomore in the College of Natural Resources majoring in a subject other than paper science, the CNR advising and recruitment coordinator is your adviser.

Undecided/Undeclared/Dropped from Major/ Exploring Options: If you have not yet declared a major, or are in one of the situations below, go to the Academic and Career Advising Center (ACAC), Room 320 Albertson Hall (ALB) to be assigned an adviser. ACAC advisers can help you in the development of your educational plans, in the decision-making process for selecting a major, and in the clarification of the relationship between educational plans and career goals. ACAC advisers also assist you in examining major alternatives if you

  • are questioning your choice of major and need help in exploring your options (see Undecided/Undeclared section later in this catalog);
  • have not yet gained entrance into or have been dropped from your major (e.g. audition, GPA requirement, portfolio review, etc.);
  • are listed as “in transition” in myPoint.


Attend all your classes regularly. We do not have a system of permitted “cuts.”

If you decide to drop the class, please do so using myPoint or visit the Enrollment Services Center. Changes in class enrollment will impact your tuition and fees balance, financial aid award and veterans educational benefit.

During the first eight days of the regular 16 week term, your instructor will take attendance. If you are not in attendance, you may be dropped from the class. You are responsible for dropping any of your enrolled classes.

If you must be absent during the term, tell your instructor prior to the class you will miss. If you cannot reach your instructor(s) in an emergency, contact the Dean of Students office, 212 Main, Phone: 715-346-2611, Email: DOS@uwsp.edu.

If you are dropped from a class due to non-attendance, you may only be reinstated to the class section using the class add process. Reinstatement to the same section or course is not guaranteed.

Your instructors will explain their specific attendance policies to be followed at the beginning of each course.

If you take part in an off-campus trip by an authorized university group such as an athletic team, musical or dramatic organization, or a class, make appropriate arrangements in advance with the instructor of each class you will miss. If you are absent from classes because of emergencies, off-campus trips, illness, or the like, your instructors will give you a reasonable amount of help in making up the work you have missed.

If you enroll in a course and cannot begin attending until after classes have already started, you must first get permission from the department offering the course. Otherwise, you may be required to drop the course.

If you do not make satisfactory arrangements with your instructors regarding excessive absences, you may be dismissed. If you are dismissed from a class, you will receive an F in that course. If you are dismissed from the University, you will receive an F in all enrolled courses.

Absences due to Military Service

You will not be penalized for class absence due to unavoidable or legitimate required military obligations, or medical appointments at a VA facility, not to exceed two (2) weeks unless special permission is granted by the instructor. You are responsible for notifying faculty members of such circumstances as far in advance as possible and for providing documentation to the Office of the Dean of Students to verify the reason for the absence. The faculty member is responsible to provide reasonable accommodations or opportunities to make up exams or other course assignments that have an impact on the course grade. For absences due to being deployed for active dutey, please refer to the Military Call-Up Instructions for Students.

Classification/Year in School

You may determine your year in school by totaling the number of credits you have earned toward your degree. Include your credits-by-exam as well as any credits you transferred from other institutions. Do not count credit earned in courses numbered 001-099.

Credits Year in School
0-14 First semester freshman
15-29 Second semester freshman
30-43 First semester sophomore
44-59 Second semester sophomore
60-73 First semester junior
74-89 Second semester junior
90-103 First semester senior
104 + Second semester senior

In this catalog “upperclass students” refers to those who have earned 60 credits or more (juniors and seniors).

Course Waivers and Substitutions

The requirements for degrees, majors and certificates represent the faculty’s judgment of the minimum standards for knowledge and skills that you must meet in that academic field. On occasion, a waiver or substitution for a requirement may be appropriate under particular conditions unique to a specific student.

If you believe that your situation may warrant a waiver or substitution, you should first contact your academic adviser. Ultimately, all waivers and/or substitutions of major or minor requirements must be approved by the chair/head of your major/minor department.

Waivers and substitutions for a general degree requirement (GDR) require further approval by the dean or designee of the college of your major. Waivers and/or substitutions for a General Education Program (GEP) requirement must be approved by the dean of your college and the Director of General Education, in addition to your adviser and department chair/head of your major.

Waivers and/or substitutions may be granted only with adequate cause and if they are consistent with UW-Stevens Point GEP guidelines. A waiver of part or all of a requirement does not reduce the total credits required for graduation.

Credits (Semester Hours)

We use the semester hour/credit to compute your study load. Each semester hour represents 50 minutes of class work, or its equivalent in other forms of instruction, per week for one semester. We consider two, or sometimes three, hours of laboratory work the equivalent of one hour of class work. If you complete one semester hour’s work with a grade of D or better, you earn one credit.

Credits taken at the graduate level as an undergraduate

At the discretion of the department offering the course(s) or program, select undergraduate students may be permitted, while still an undergraduate, to enroll in courses at the graduate level that are listed in the catalog and timetable with a 5XX or 6XX numbering designation. This option may be provided to undergraduate students as a part of a “4+1” or similar program where eligible students complete the requirements for both baccalaureate and master’s degrees during the specified plan and terms of study.

For the purpose of undergraduate degree requirements, students may apply up to nine credits of coursework taken at the graduate level toward undergraduate program, elective, and overall degree requirements. Specifically, up to nine credits of graduate coursework can be applied toward the 120 total credits required for a baccalaureate degree, and up to nine credits of graduate coursework may also be counted toward the 40 required credits at the 300/400 level.

Drop/Add/Withdrawal Procedures


You may register at UW-Stevens Point or add additional courses online through the eighth day of classes during the fall and spring semester. After the eighth day of classes, the online registration system is turned off and appropriate signatures will be required to add or drop courses.

Dropping and adding courses.

You are expected to complete the courses for which you register. If you decide you do not want to take a course, you MUST follow the procedures established by the university to OFFICIALLY DROP the course. If you never attend or stop attending a course and fail to officially drop, you will receive an F in the course at end of the semester. 

You are expected to attend the first meeting of class, or have permission from the instructor or chair of the department to be absent. Those who do not attend the first two days of class may be required to drop if there are others who wish to add the course. It is the student’s responsibility to officially drop the course through myPoint or the Enrollment Services Center.

Adds/Drops DURING first eight days of the semester.

You are permitted unlimited adds and drops during the first eight (8) days of the semester. Courses dropped during the first eight days will not appear on your transcript. If you decide to drop the class, please do so using myPoint or visit the Enrollment Services Center, 106 SSC. Changes in class enrollment will impact your tuition and fees balance, financial aid award, and veterans educational benefits.

During the first eight days of the regular 16 week term, your instructor will take attendance. If you are not in attendance, you may be dropped from the class. You are responsible for dropping any of your enrolled classes.

Adds/Drops AFTER the eighth day of the semester.

You may not ADD a class after the eighth day except for extenuating circumstances and only when approved by the department chair, instructor, and your adviser. You may DROP a course after the eighth day and through the tenth week of the semester, after obtaining written authorization from the instructor, your adviser, and in some cases, the department chair of the course(s).

You will receive a W on your transcript for all courses OFFICIALLY dropped after the eighth day of the semester and through the tenth week of the semester. (Note: this timeline applies to courses that meet for the full fall or spring term; other sessions have shorter deadlines).

You may drop a course after the tenth week for extenuating circumstances, such as serious illness, personal duress, or factors beyond your contol (documentation will be required). Requests to drop after the deadline must be directed to the Enrollment Services Center. If you stop attending a course without dropping it, you will receive an F in the course.

Forms and instructions for drops/adds are available in the Enrollment Services Center. You can also find them online on the Enrollment Services Center website www.uwsp.edu/enrollmentservices). Follow the procedures established and retain a copy of all of your drop/add transactions.

Withdrawal deadlines for courses that meet less than the full term can be viewed on the Enrollment Services Center website.

Students dropping all classes after the first day of classes should see the section on Withdrawing from the University.

Withdrawing from UW-Stevens Point.

Withdrawing from the University

  • You should discuss the decision with your academic adviser or a college adviser.
  • Complete the Withdrawal from University Form/Exit Survey (can be found on the Enrollment Services Center website) and indicate the last date you participated in an academic function such as class, study group, or exam. This date will be your official date of withdrawal. All grades and financial functions will be processed based on this date.
  • Meet with an Enrollment Specialist at the Enrollment Services Center to review your withdrawal from the university. The Enrollment Specialist will review the academic, financial and financial aid issues associated with your decision. For students attending via distance education, this process may be completed electronically.

If you withdraw during the first eight days of the semester, only the date of withdrawal will appear on your transcript. After the eighth day and through the tenth week, you will receive a W for each course. After the tenth week you may withdraw with a valid reason for withdrawal such as serious illness or personal issues that are clearly beyond your control. Requests to withdraw after the deadline must be directed to the Enrollment Services Center. If you withdraw from the University after the tenth week with a valid reason, grades of W will be assigned to your courses. You will receive grades for courses completed prior to your withdrawal and you are responsible for any costs associated with those classes.

Students without a valid reason for dropping after the tenth week will receive a grade of F. If you stop attending school and do not officially withdraw, you will receive an F for those courses in which you are still registered and will be responsible for the related tuition and fees.

Repeated occurrences of W may affect your ability to maintain standards of academic progress and may jeopardize your financial aid eligibility. See Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid  in the Finances section of the catalog to determine the effect of courses not successfully completed.

Withdrawal deadlines for courses that meet less than the full term can be viewed on the Enrollment Services Center website.


No final or last exam will be given during the final week of classes. All instructors must meet with their classes during the final examination period at the time and place scheduled.

There is no final exam period scheduled on campus for courses taught 100% distance learning, courses for which no campus visit is required at any time. Instructors of partial distance learning courses, courses of which 75% or more is delivered via distance learning and have at least one required campus visit, may at their own discretion determine if a final examination meeting on campus is warranted. An instructor may change the time or place of a final exam only with the approval of the appropriate dean.

If, due to illness or an emergency, an instructor is unable to give a scheduled examination, the instructor notifies the department chair and the dean and provides a make-up examination. If the university must declare an official emergency during the final examination period, the exams that are postponed will be rescheduled on the next available date, after the exam period has ended, as determined by the Chancellor or his/her designee. Rescheduled exams due to a university emergency will be held in the same rooms and at the same times as their originally scheduled date.

If you have three or more examinations on the same day, or if you have other problems with the examination schedule, you may request that your instructors change the schedule for you.

Grade-related Policies

All Grade-related Policies  are listed separately.


If you are an undergraduate, apply for graduation at least one full semester prior to the term in which you will complete your degree. You can apply for graduation online.

It is your responsibility to make sure your majors and minors are declared in the departments of each program prior to applying for graduation. For additional information on graduation, go to the Office of the Registrar.

To be eligible for the bachelor’s degree, you must:

  • Complete all the general requirements for your degree.
  • Earn a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 in all courses attempted at UW-Stevens Point.
  • Earn a minimum 2.00 GPA in all courses required for a major, except in those programs requiring a higher GPA, and complete all the requirements for the major. In some programs, you must also complete an approved minor.
  • Earn a cumulative GPA of 2.00 overall (includes both UW-Stevens Point and transfer credits).
  • Earn at least 120 credits, which include the general requirements for your degree and the requirements for at least one major. You may need to take some elective credits. Some majors require more than 120 credits.
  • Earn at least 40 credits in courses numbered 300 or above.
  • Earn at least 30 of your total required credits in courses taken at UW-Stevens Point. Credits earned through experience, advanced placement, or examination programs do not apply.

If you are a graduate student, follow the instructions listed in the Graduate  section of this catalog.

Graduation, Four-Year Agreement

If your academic goal is to complete a baccalaureate degree with one major in four years, you may decide to participate in UW-Stevens Point’s Four-Year Graduation Agreement. Under this agreement, you will work closely with experienced academic advisers to select the appropriate course sequences which will ensure timely completion of your degree requirements. For this agreement, the four year period begins with the start of the term or summer session in which you first enroll and ends 48 months later.

The four-year program has many advantages, including entering the work force or pursuing graduate education as quickly as possible, and avoiding unnecessary undergraduate expenses. However, the program is not for everyone. It might preclude you from obtaining a high credit major that has strict course sequencing, changing majors, extensive extracurricular involvement, internships, or study abroad. For more information, please check with your adviser as soon as you begin coursework at UW-Stevens Point.

Residence Requirements

To be eligible for a bachelor’s degree from UW-Stevens Point, you must earn at least 30 of your total required credits in courses taken at UW-Stevens Point. Credits earned through experience, advanced placement, or examination programs do not apply.

Major or Minor Declaration

The academic departments decide whom they will accept as majors and minors. As soon as you decide on a major and/or minor, go to that department to declare your intent. The department will determine your “status” as a major or minor and enter it into your computer record. Do this for each major and minor you intend to study.

If you have not yet decided on a major, go to the Academic and Career Advising Center (ACAC), Room 320 Albertson Hall (ALB), to be assigned an adviser. ACAC advisers will assist you in the development of your educational plans, in the decision-making process for selecting a major, and in the clarification of the relationship between educational plans and career goals.

It is up to you to be sure that you complete all the requirements for your major and minor. Check regularly with an adviser in each department in which you have majors and minors to make sure you are meeting all of the requirements. You must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 in your major(s)/minor(s), including prescribed collateral courses, in order to be eligible for departmental approval to graduate with the major(s)/ minor(s), unless the department requires a higher grade point average. To see the current requirements for each major and minor, check the requirements on the Majors & Minors  page.

If you are seeking teacher certification, you need to earn a 2.50 cumulative grade point average before you student teach. You also need a 2.75 grade point average in your major, minor, concentration, and education courses before you student teach. To be a student teaching intern, you need a 3.00 grade point average in your major, minor, concentration, and education courses.

Your department may discontinue you as a major candidate before you complete two-thirds of the credits required for your major and before you begin your senior year. To do so, they notify you in writing. If you are in good standing as a major during your junior year but do not continue to meet your department’s standards during your senior year, your department may discontinue you then as well.

Your department may also conditionally accept or retain you as a major candidate for your senior year. To do so, at the time they accept you, they notify you in writing of the specific conditions you must meet. If you fail to satisfy these written conditions during your senior year, they may notify you in writing to discontinue you as a candidate.

Dropped from Major

If you have been dropped from your major due to enrollment management policies or because you cannot reach or maintain the academic standards set by your desired major, you may either declare a different major or meet with the staff in the Academic and Career Advising Center, Room 320 Albertson Hall (ALB), 715-346-3226. ACAC staff can assist you in examining major alternatives, in developing of your educational plans, in the decision-making process for selecting a major, and in the clarification of the relationship between educational plans and career goals.

Records (Privacy and Access)

The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as amended entitles you to review “official records, files, and data directly related” to you which the university maintains. You may also request a hearing regarding any alleged “inaccurate, misleading, or inappropriate” information. In most circumstances, the university will not release information from your records to third parties without your consent or notice to you. An interpretation of the law is printed below. Copies are available at the Office of the Registrar, 101 SSC.

The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, requires that you be advised of your rights concerning your education records and of certain categories of public information which the university has designated “directory information.” This notice, in question and answer format, satisfies this requirement of the act.

As a student on the Stevens Point campus, what rights do I have regarding my university records?

You have the right to inspect and review all your records which meet the act’s definition of “education records.”

What is the definition of “education records?”

Education records are all the records maintained by the university about you. There are six exceptions:

  • Personal notes of UW-Stevens Point staff and faculty.
  • Employment records.
  • Medical/counseling records used solely for treatment.
  • Financial records of your parents.
  • Confidential letters, statements or recommendations placed in your records prior to January 1, 1975.
  • Confidential letters and statements or recommendations for admission, employment, or honorary recognition placed in your records after January 1, 1975, for which you have waived the right to inspect and review.

Is there any situation in which the university may insist that I waive my rights?

Under no condition may you be required to waive your rights under this act before receiving university service or benefits.

Where are my records kept?

Records are not maintained in a central location on the campus. Requests to review your records must be made separately to each office which maintains your records. Your request must be made in writing and presented to the appropriate office. That office will have up to 45 days to honor your request. For most students, these offices will include those of the registrar, your school or college dean, your major department, University Police and Security Services, and any other campus office with which you have been in contact, such as Student Financial Aid or Residential Living.

What if I do not agree with what is in my records?

You may challenge any information contained in your “education records” which you believe to be inaccurate, misleading, or inappropriate. This right does not extend to reviewing grades unless the grade assigned by your professor was inaccurately recorded in your records. You may also insert a statement in your record to explain any such material from your point of view. If you wish to challenge information in your file, you must make a written request for a hearing to the dean or director of the appropriate office. In most cases, the decision of the dean or director will be final. However, you may elect to file an appeal in writing to the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs who will review the decision only if a significant question of policy or compliance with the law appears to be raised by the case.

May I determine which third parties can view my education records?

Under the act, your prior written consent must be obtained before information may be disclosed to third parties unless they are exempted from this provision. Exceptions include:

  • Requests from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point faculty and staff with a legitimate educational “need to know.”
  • Requests in accordance with a lawful subpoena or court order.
  • Requests from representatives of agencies or organizations from which you have received financial aid.
  • Requests from officials of other educational institutions in which you intend to enroll.
  • Requests from other persons specifically exempted from the prior consent requirement of the act (certain federal and state officials, organizations conducting studies on behalf of the university, accrediting organizations).
  • Parents who claim students as dependents under the Internal Revenue code of 1954, Section 152, and who provide proof of such status.
  • Requests for “directory information” (please refer to the next question for an explanation).

What is meant by the term “directory information?”

The university, in accordance with the act, has designated the following categories of information about you as public unless you choose to exercise your right to have any or all of this information withheld. This information will be routinely released to any inquirer unless you request that all or part of this be withheld.

These categories are:

  • Name.
  • Home address.
  • Home telephone number.
  • Local address. (Keep your local address current in myPoint.)
  • Local telephone number.
  • Email address.
  • Place of birth.
  • Major/minor field of study, and college.
  • Participation in officially recognized university activities and sports.
  • Weight and height of members of athletics teams.
  • Attendance (including beginning, ending, registration and withdrawal dates; credits carried in a term; current classification; and graduation dates).
  • Degrees and awards received (type of degree and date granted).
  • The most recent previous educational agency or institution attended.
  • Name of parents or guardian.
  • High school from which you graduated.

What kinds of inquiries does the university receive for “directory information?”

The university receives many inquiries for “directory information” from a variety of sources including friends, parents, relatives, prospective employers, graduate schools, honor societies, licensing agencies, government agencies, and news media.

What if I don’t want “directory information” released?

Please consider very carefully the consequences of any decision by you to remove these items from the list of “directory information.” Should you decide to inform the university not to release any or all of this “directory information,” any future request for such information from non-university persons or organizations will be refused. For example, the university could not release your telephone number and address to a family member wishing to notify you of a serious illness or crisis in the family. A prospective employer requesting confirmation of your major field of study or address would also be denied access to such items, should you withdraw them from the list of “directory information.” The university will honor your request to withhold any of the items listed above but cannot assume responsibility to contact you for subsequent permission to release them. Regardless of the effect upon you, the university assumes no liability of honoring your instructions that such information be withheld.

If you wish to file a form withdrawing some or all of the information in the “directory” classification, you should report to the Office of the Registrar, 101 SSC, and complete the necessary form.

Where can I find out more information about the provisions of the act?

If you have any questions regarding the provisions of the act, you may contact the Office of the Registrar, 101 SSC, 715-346-4301.

Whom should I contact if I wish to make a complaint?

If you believe that the university is not complying with the act, please direct your comment to the Associate Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management, 715-346-4093.

Remedial Coursework

If you are placed into a remedial course in mathematics, your academic adviser will encourage and help you restrict your coursework to a level that will allow you to succeed.

You must receive written permission from your adviser to enroll in more than 16 credits during any semester in which you are taking remedial courses. If you want to take more than 17credits during a semester that includes remedial courses, you must get written permission from the dean of your college. Decisions about the number of credits you can take in one semester while doing remedial coursework are based on such things as your ACT score, high school class rank, overall high school record, university grade point average, and demands on your time from coursework, extracurricular activities and employment.

If you enter UW-Stevens Point and are placed into a remedial math course, you must complete it before you earn 30 credits toward graduation. If you fail to complete the remedial coursework before earning 30 credits, you will be restricted to a maximum of 12 credits a semester, including the remedial course, until the requirement is met.

Study Load

The typical study load is 14-16 credits per semester (including courses at other universities and through distance education). You may take 17 credits with the permission of your adviser. Study loads of 18, 19, or 20 credits must be approved BEFORE you register. For the appropriate authorizing official for your department/program, go to the Office of the Registrar homepage and click on “A-Z Policies.” From there, click on “Study Load” under “S.”

The dean of your college must approve study loads of 21 credits or more. We grant requests only for extraordinary reasons and only for students with outstanding academic records.

Note that you will be limited to 12 credits if you:

  1. Do not complete required remedial courses before you earn 30 credits.
  2. Do not complete the Foundation Level requirements of the General Education Program before you earn 60 credits. See General Education Program (GEP)  for the complete policy.

Check with the Enrollment Services Center if you wish to appeal this restriction.

In order to qualify for either Social Security benefits or full Veterans Benefits (Public Law 550), you must carry at least 12 credits (semester hours) of courses.

Special Sessions

Special Sessions  

Transferrable Credits

We use only the credits and grade points you earn at UW-Stevens Point in determining your cumulative grade point average. However, transfer credits and grades are included in the calculation of the grade point average in most majors and minors and in the determination of graduation honors.

You may use credits with grades of D or better that transferred from an accredited institution toward graduation. You may also use them to meet your requirements and prerequisites for specific courses, but not necessarily toward your major.

Because different institutions use different course numbering systems, we may not consider a course numbered 300 or above at another institution to be equivalent to a course we number 300 or above here. Direct any questions about the transfer of your credits to the Admissions Office, Room 102, Student Services Center.

If you earn the last credits toward your degree at another college or university, have a transcript of these credits sent to the Office of the Registrar, UW-Stevens Point, 1108 Fremont Street, Stevens Point WI 54481-3897, within 30 days after the date of the UW-Stevens Point graduation. If you fail to meet this deadline, your degree will not be awarded until the next graduation.