Academic Policies

Statement of Nondiscrimination

Cogswell College is an equal opportunity institution of higher education and employer and is firmly committed to non-discrimination in its delivery of educational services and employment practices. These practices include, but are not limited to, hiring, employment promotion and transfer, admissions policies, the administration of its scholarship and loan programs and participation in the benefits and services of educational programs or related activities sponsored by the College. In compliance with all applicable federal and state laws, decisions will be made irrespective of the individual's sex, race, color, religion, religious creed, age (over 18 years), mental or physical disability, medical condition as defined by law, national origin, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation or any other basis prohibited by federal or state law or local ordinance. This policy is in accordance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Executive Order 11246, as amended; Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1975; and any applicable state and local laws. When necessary, the College will reasonably accommodate individuals with disabilities if the individual is otherwise qualified to meet the fundamental requirements of the College's educational program and/or is able to safely perform all essential functions, without undue hardship to the College.

Class Standing

The class standing is determined by the number of credits successfully completed:

0 - 29 credits - Freshman
30 - 59 credits - Sophomore
60 - 89 credits - Junior
90 or above credits - Senior


Cogswell students are expected to attend every class session scheduled for each course in which they enroll. Individual instructors may present to students specific attendance requirements at the first meeting of the class. Students who miss a class must arrange with instructors to take any examination or complete any make-up work at an alternate time.

Grading System and Grade Points

The College uses the following four-point grading system:

Grades used in GPA Calculation:

Grade / Grade Points / Credit
A+ / 4.0 (with distinction)
A / 4.0
A-/ 3.7
B+ / 3.3
B / 3.0
B-/ 2.7
C+/ 2.3
C / 2.0
C- / 1.7
D+/ 1.3
D / 1.0
D- / 0.7
F / 0.0
AF Administrative "F", no credit received

Grades not Used in GPA Calculation:

R Retaken
NG Grade not received from instructor
I Incomplete
P Satisfactory, "C" or better, credit received
NP Unsatisfactory, no credit received
W Withdrawal, no credit received
AU Audit, no credit received

Midterm Deficiency

Midterm exams are given before the eighth week of the semester. Following the exams, instructors are asked to submit the names of students who are not maintaining a "C-" average or higher. A midterm deficiency report is sent to these students. Once a student receives a midterm deficiency letter, a copy is sent to his/her advisor. The advisor should immediately arrange a meeting with the student to determine the cause of the midterm deficiency and to create an action plan to avoid further academic problems. The advisor files a hard copy of the plan in the student file and makes the appropriate notes in the student's CAMS file. A copy of the plan should be given to the Coordinator, Director, or Dean of the program.

The action plan should include the following:

  • Review and, if necessary, drop the problem class if there is a chance that the final class grade will affect the student's overall GPA in a catastrophic way.
  • Change the following term schedule by dropping, repeating, or changing classes.
  • Arrange regular meetings during the term to monitor student's academic progress.
  • Assist the student with arranging tutorials or other class assistance.


An Incomplete (I) grade may be used if the student has essentially completed the course except for a missing examination, project, or paper. An Incomplete is not considered a grade, and will not satisfy the prerequisite requirement of any subsequent course. The grade of "I" converts to the default grade if the work is not completed by the end of the next semester, unless an extension is obtained from the instructor (with the approval of the Dean of the College).


Students may elect to take a course that is not used to satisfy a designated requirement for graduating in their major on a Pass/Fail basis. If the instructor is not informed of the student's enrollment status, he/she will assign a letter grade at the end of the term. Grades of "A+ through C" are converted into a "P" by the Registrar's Office. Elective credit, which applies towards graduation, is earned for courses completed with a "P" grade, but the grade is not used in grade point average calculations.


A student may choose to audit a non-required course. An auditor is allowed to participate in class discussions and take exams, but will not receive unit credit or a grade. The grade report and official transcript for the course will indicate "AU" rather than a letter grade. An audit grade may not be changed to a letter grade. An audited course does not satisfy a prerequisite requirement, cannot be subsequently challenged, and may not be used to waive a graduation requirement.


A "W" indicates withdrawal from class. A drop form must be submitted to the Registrar by the last day to drop.

No Credit Received

An "NG" is used when a grade is not received from the instructor. No credit is recorded for coursework until a grade is received.

Grade Point Average (GPA) Calculations

The GPA is calculated according to the following formula:

GPA = Sum of (Grade Point Value X Course Credits for Each Course) / Total Credits.

Example Grade Point Average Calculation

ENG1003 creditsA-(3.7 grade value)3 X 3.7 =11.1
MATH1153 creditsB(3.0 grade value)3 X 3.0 =9.0
DAA1103 creditsA (4.0 grade value)3 x 4.0 =12.0

11.1 + 9.0 + 12.0 = 32.1 / 9 credits = GPA=3.57

Repeated Courses

Students may repeat a course that they previously passed with a low grade or failed. Only the highest grade will be used to calculate the cumulative grade point average. Grades will be included in the GPA calculation if a student chooses to repeat a course more than once.

Grades for Core Courses

In courses designated as "core courses" students must earn at least a grade of "C" in order to progress to the next level course in a sequence.

Report of Grades

Grade reports are mailed to students the week following the last day of classes. If the student makes prior written arrangements, grades may be picked up at Registrar's office.

Change of Grades

Only the instructor of a class, with the approval of the Dean of the College, may change a grade received by the student. If a student feels an incorrect grade has been received, the matter should be discussed with the instructor, and the grade appeal procedure used if satisfaction is not received. No grades are changed after a year from the date the grade was received or after the student has graduated.

Grade Appeal

Grade appeals must be initiated by the student to the instructor involved. If a student is not satisfied with the instructor's explanation and action, the student may appeal to the Dean of the College. The Dean will form an Appeal Committee of three faculty and/or students (who have completed the course involved) to examine the student's and the instructor's records. The committee will consist of one member chosen by the student, one by the instructor, and one by the Dean of the College. The Dean of the College will render the final decision based on the recommendation of the committee.

A written appeal on such decisions may be submitted to the President. If the President considers the situation to warrant adjudication, an appropriate hearing will be arranged.

Academic Standing

A student's academic standing is designated on the student's official transcript.

Good Academic Standing

A student is in good academic standing if the student's cumulative grade point average is 2.00 or higher. A student in good academic standing is eligible to enroll in the subsequent semester. Academic Warning

A student is placed on academic warning when the term GPA falls below 2.0. Academic Warning requires consultation with the student's advisor. Together, student and advisor will create a recommended plan of action designed to help the student return to satisfactory academic performance.

Academic Probation

A student is placed on academic probation the semester following a semester on academic warning if the student's term GPA remains below 2.0. Academic Probation requires consultation with the student's advisor. Together, student and advisor create a mandatory Plan of Action to help the student return to satisfactory academic performance. For Juniors and Seniors the plan must ensure that students can reach graduation with the required 2.0 GPA. Academic plans must be submitted to the Dean of the College for approval. A copy of the Plan of Action must be submitted to the Registrar to be filed in the student's Academic File.

Plan of Action

The following are possible items to be included in a plan of action: 1.Reduction in number of hours attempted 2.Change in program (major) 3.Enrollment in specific courses prescribed by the advisor 4.Re-enrollment in courses in which the student previously received a low or failing grade 5.Personal counseling 6.Other measures recommended by the advisor

Academic Disqualification

After two consecutive semesters on academic probation, if the student's cumulative GPA is below 2.0, the student is disqualified. If the student's cumulative GPA is 2.0 or above, the student remains on probation as long as the term GPA is 2.0 or below.

A student who is disqualified is dismissed from the College for a minimum of one term (excluding the summer), after which the student can appeal for reinstatement. A reinstated student is on probation for one semester. The student is required to formulate and follow a Plan of Action as described above in the paragraph above on Academic Probation.

Appeal for Reinstatement after Academic Disqualification

To be reinstated, a student must apply to the Dean of the College, who will convene a committee to evaluate the student's records. A student will not be reinstated unless all of the following are satisfied:

  • The cause of the student's poor work has been identified and addressed.
  • Evidence is presented that the student has improved the capability for success such as satisfactory work at another institution in courses that qualify for transfer credits.
  • There is a reasonable expectation that the student will qualify for graduation, which requires a 2.00 or better grade point average in all coursework. The decision to reinstate a student is rendered by a sub-committee of the Academic Standards Committee, as convened by the Dean of the College.

A disqualified student wishing to change majors must apply for reinstatement to the new major department.

Academic Honors

The President's Honor Roll

Recognizes students who have completed six (6) or more credits coursework during the semester, with a 3.80 grade point average or better.

The Dean's Honor Roll

Recognizes students who have completed six (6) or more credits coursework in a semester with a 3.50-3.79 grade point average.

Academic honors are noted on a student's official transcript and grade reports.

Graduation and Degree Requirements

Each major program of study requires that the student satisfactorily complete a prescribed sequence of courses or an approved equivalent. The course of study includes a prescribed number of credits in each curricular area. The required coursework for each degree is listed in this catalog under Degree Programs. A student is eligible to participate in commencement when the degree program has been completed in the Fall or Spring term of the current academic year or is reasonably expected to be completed at the end of the Summer term.

A student must be registered and have a declared major at Cogswell College during the semester in which he or she completes the requirements for any degree.

A student receiving an Incomplete has the following semester to remove the deficiency without a change of graduation date. If the Incomplete is not removed by then, the graduation date will be the semester in which the grade change is recorded.

To receive a degree a student must have a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or better. Please see the section on registration for more information about applying for graduation.

Graduation with Honors

A student who maintains a 3.50, 3.65 and 3.8 or better at degree completion will graduate with honors cum laude (honors), magna cum laude (high honors), or summa cum laude (highest honors) respectively.

Student Academic Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of students to:

  1. Be aware of and comply with policies and procedures, deadlines, and graduation requirements found within this catalog
  2. Monitor their progress toward completion of graduation requirements
  3. Obtain correct information before making a decision
  4. Make efficient use of the resources of the College
  5. Know and comply with the content of the Student Handbook and Student’s Rights and Responsibilities.

Cogswell College expects high standards of honesty and integrity from all members of the community. The College is committed to creating an environment that facilitates the academic and personal growth of its members. The College, therefore, has a duty to protect its educational purpose through the setting of standards of scholarship and conduct. To this end, it is each student's responsibility to read and comply with the Code of Student Conduct. The latter can be found in the Student Handbook which is available through the Admissions Office and the Office of Student Life.

Academic Honesty

Academic honesty is a fundamental principle of the educational process. It is essential to maintaining the value of the academic degree students receive and the credibility of the institution.

Academic honesty is vital to the proper evaluation of the level of knowledge and understanding a student acquires in a course. This evaluation may be based on quizzes, exams, reports, homework, projects, and any other assignments used by the faculty to ascertain the student's command of the course material. Any willful act that invalidates the process of evaluation is an act of academic dishonesty.

The following activities are examples of academic dishonesty. The list is not comprehensive; any act that satisfies the above definition is to be considered academic dishonesty.

  • Alteration of grades or official records
  • Use of unauthorized materials or sources of information on exams
  • Changing already graded documents
  • Inventing or changing laboratory data
  • Use of purchased or acquired papers
  • Submission of homework, take-home exams, reports, and projects mostly prepared by another person
  • Representation of the work of others as one's own
  • Facilitation or assistance in any act of academic dishonesty
  • Providing or getting information about the contents and answers for an exam prior to the time the exam is given
  • Altering another student's work or academic records

Academic Freedom

Academic freedom is the cornerstone of higher education. It guarantees that faculty and students may engage in the classroom in candid discussions of issues important to society, even if their views are controversial, without fear of censorship or reprisal. The College endorses the 1940 Statement of Principles and 1940 and 1970 interpretive comments of the American Association of University Professors on academic freedom.

It is the policy of Cogswell College that in the context of classroom discussion and written assignments students may freely express their own perspectives or opinions on substantive issues. Students may be evaluated or challenged by their professors based on the quality of their reasoning and verbal or written skills. Faculty may not penalize or censor students for dissenting or controversial views.