Academic Policies and Procedures
The visiting non-degree status was established so that qualified individuals with a completed undergraduate degree from an accredited institution (and, typically, with a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or higher) might enroll in 1-2 graduate-level classes in the fall or spring semesters for their own benefit or, in some cases, to complete a few prerequisites for graduate-level programs to which they are applying. Some departments allow visiting non-degree students to enroll on a space-available basis, while others do not allow any visiting non-degree students to enroll in their courses. Students must secure advance, written permission to enroll in this status and for specific courses at the start of every semester. Prior approval to enroll in this status or for certain courses does not transfer to future semesters.
Individuals who wish to take a few courses (up to a lifetime maximum of 12 credit hours) to continue their education may request to register for select Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies classes as a visiting non-degree student. Students must secure advance, written permission to enroll in this status and for specific courses at the start of every semester. Prior approval to enroll in this status for certain courses does not transfer to future semesters.
Important: Permission to enroll in this status does not confer or imply admission to any degree program at Georgetown University, regardless of the grade(s) earned while taking classes on a visiting, non-degree basis. Students who have been denied admission to a degree program at the University should therefore not enroll in this status with the intention of re-applying to those programs at a later date. Likewise, students accepted provisionally or conditionally into degree programs - and given specific requirements to meet by those programs - should not attempt to subvert those requirements by enrolling on a visiting basis. Even if a student is later accepted into a Georgetown degree program, that student should keep in mind that credits earned in this status might not be allowed to transfer into that degree program. The decision to allow such credits would be subject to the policies, procedures, and review of the accepting department and School (such as the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences; the McCourt School of Public Policy; or the School of Continuing Studies) at that time.
Please note: Visiting non-degree students are not entitled to visa support, full counseling services, financial aid, academic advising, or other services reserved for degree-seeking students at the University. Students with documented disabilities are strongly encouraged to contact the Academic Resource Center in advance to request possible accommodations that might be available. If the Academic Resource Center recommends accommodations, its office will provide the student with an official letter to share with professors. Students are personally responsible for completing this process officially and in a timely manner. Neither accommodations nor exceptions to policies can be permitted to students who have not completed this process in advance.
Academic Standing, Dismissal, and Continued Registration
The minimum satisfactory grade for graduate courses is "B" (3.00). Given the academic rigor of these courses, we strongly recommend that students only enroll if they have (1) a cumulative, undergraduate GPA of 3.00 or higher and (2) solid grades of "B+" or higher in coursework from the field in which they hope to enroll. For example, a student with a cumulative GPA of 3.33 should not attempt chemistry or physics courses if s/he does not have strong grades of "B+" or higher in science courses. Similarly, a student without strong grades of "B+" in writing courses should not enroll in writing-intensive classes regardless of the cumulative GPA. Students who enroll in courses for which they do not have the appropriate skills and/or academic background accept full responsibility for completing the academic requirements of those courses.
Visiting graduate students are held to a high academic standard and are dismissed academically if they earn one grade of "F" or two grades of "C." Visiting students who earn grades of "B-" or lower - and who have not met the criteria for academic dismissal - should not expect to receive continued permission to enroll in classes in this status.
The minimum satisfactory grade for undergraduate courses is "C" (2.00). Given the academic rigor of these courses, we strongly recommend that students only enroll if they have (1) a high school and college (if applicable) GPA of 2.00 or higher and (2) solid grades of "B" or higher in coursework from the field in which they hope to enroll. For example, a student with a cumulative GPA of 2.33 should not attempt a writing-intensive class if s/he does not have strong grades of "B" or higher in English courses or other writing-heavy subjects. Students who enroll in courses for which they do not have the appropriate skills and/or academic background accept full responsibility for completing the academic requirements of those courses.
Visiting undergraduate students are held to a high academic standard and are dismissed academically if they earn one grade of "F" or two grades of "C-" or lower. Visiting students who earn grades of "C-" or lower - and who have not met the criteria for academic dismissal - should not expect to receive continued permission to enroll in classes in this status.
Grades and Grade Change Requests
At the end of each semester of enrollment, visiting students are responsible for printing up and reviewing their transcript and grades through MyAccess. If they have questions about a grade or find that a grade has not been recorded, they should contact the instructor and/or Registrar's Office immediately for guidance. Once a final grade has been recorded, it cannot be changed with the submission of additional or revised work. Grade changes must be submitted by the instructor to the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs & Compliance and can only be considered for the following reasons: (1) The student has appealed the grade successfully by the deadline through the visiting student grade appeal process as described below; (2) An Incomplete has been finished by the deadline as described below; (3) The instructor made a grading or mathematical error in calculating the original grade; (4) The instructor made a recording error when submitting the final grade.
Grade Appeal Process - Visiting Non-Degree Students Only
Although the non-degree, visiting student enrollment process is managed through the School of Continuing Studies, students who enroll through this status may take courses in departments and with faculty members who do not fall under the authority of our School. We trust Georgetown instructors to evaluate the academic content and merit of work submitted by students for those courses, and we do not have the academic or professional expertise to re-grade or re-evaluate exams, papers, or other work submitted to instructors. In the event that a visiting student would like to appeal a grade, that student should therefore take the following steps:
- Students should first seek an explanation for the grade through a discussion with the instructor. This process must begin no later than 30 days after the beginning of the semester following that semester in which the contested grade was received. Students should bring copies of the course syllabus and all graded assignments with them to their meeting with the instructor so that they can discuss all aspects of their grade and how it was calculated and recorded. The syllabus should serve as a guideline with the understanding that professors can make amendments to their syllabi during the semester (adding or deleting assignments, for example, or changing a percentage allocation for an assignment under unusual circumstances) if needed as long as all students in the course are held to the same academic standards.
- If, after speaking with the professor, the student still believes that the final grade was incorrectly assigned, he or she may then appeal in writing to the Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs & Compliance. The student should supply a copy of the syllabus, relevant emails, and copies of all graded assignments. This process must begin no later than 60 days after the beginning of the semester following the semester in which the contested grade was received. The course instructor and or department chair may also be contacted by the Assistant Dean for additional information. Upon completion of this review, the Assistant Dean may decide (1) that there is no basis for the appeal and the original grade will be upheld or (2) that the appeal warrants further review by an internal committee comprised of three members of the School's administrative staff and faculty. If a committee is called, the Assistant Dean will name a chair of that committee and all members will review the information and assignments and then make a formal, written recommendation to the Assistant Dean. In either case, neither the Assistant Dean nor the committee members will judge the academic merit of the assignments; rather, the Assistant Dean will review the situation solely to ensure that the grading criteria were followed and applied to all students. After investigating the matter fully, the Assistant Dean will either deny the grade appeal or request that the instructor re-consider the final grade based upon the review. The instructor is under no obligation to change the grade, however, regardless of the recommendation.
- If, after speaking with the instructor and Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs & Compliance, the student would like to appeal further based upon procedural grounds, he or she may then submit a formal request to the SCS Associate Dean for Academic Affairs & Compliance and the Dean of the School of Continuing Studies for final review. The Associate Dean will complete an investigation on behalf of the Dean. This process must begin no later than 90 days after the beginning of the semester following the semester in which the contested grade was received. Please note: This final level of appeal reviews the administrative handling of the appeal only. Neither the Associate Dean nor the Dean of SCS will evaluate the academic merit of the work (such as re-grading a paper or test). The decision of the Dean is final and not open to further appeal.
Students are expected to complete all coursework by the end of the semester in which that coursework is taken. In extreme, documented instances (typically related to unexpected work or health reasons), it may be necessary for students to request an Incomplete, "I," grade and a limited extension of time to complete the required coursework. Incompletes are not automatic, and some professors do not allow Incompletes. If they do, they may establish a date prior to the dates given here, and they may also assign a grade penalty or other penalty for late work. All incompletes should be requested first by the student of the professor.
If the professor grants a student additional time to complete the coursework, and the work is completed by the date established by the professor on or before the incomplete deadline, the "I" is changed to the appropriate grade. This policy is applicable to all courses taken by visiting, non-degree students, regardless of the department teaching the course. Deadlines for the submission of incomplete work from each semester:
March 1: for a course taken in the fall term
July 15: for a course taken in the spring term
October 15: for a course taken in the summer term
If these dates fall on a weekend, the following Monday will be the deadline. All assignments to be completed by those dates must be delivered to the professors no later than 4 p.m. on or before the date listed above. Students are responsible for making certain that any emailed work, including attachments, is received and can be opened by the associate dean and professor. Submissions after the published deadline date and time will not be accepted and the grade of "I" will automatically change to the grade of "F." Upon receipt of the final assignment(s) by the deadline, the professor will review the work submitted and send a grade change report to the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs & Compliance for final review.
Drop/Withdrawal from a Class
Students are fully responsible for managing their enrollment and registration. Students who stop attending courses without officially dropping or withdrawing from them on their own receive failing grades in those courses. To drop or withdraw from a class as a visiting non-degree student within the drop/withdrawal periods, please email firstname.lastname@example.org Current deadlines for the add/drop period and for withdrawals from a class are listed on the Academic Calendar posted on the University Registrar's website.
After the add/drop period ends, students can only withdraw from a course by getting the approval of the Director of the Visiting Non-Degree Program and submitting a signed paper withdrawal form. This form is available in the Registrar’s Office and in the SCS Academic Affairs & Compliance Office. Withdrawal requests cannot be done online or by calling/emailing programs or the Registrar’s Office. It is the student’s personal responsibility to deliver the signed form to the Registrar’s Office before the official withdrawal deadline. Tuition will be charged on a sliding scale, and no additional refunds will be provided after these periods have ended. Failure on the student’s part to withdraw officially from a course will result in a grade of "F" in the course.
Please note: Refunds, if applicable, are based upon the date the form is submitted by the student to the Registrar. The School strictly adheres to the deadlines and policies of the University described on the Registrar's website under Refunds and Tuition. Refunds are not authorized or recommended after these deadlines have passed. All refund requests are handled through the Office of Student Accounts. Additional "Refund Information" can be found on their website.
In addition to the academic and administrative policies described above, some policies apply to all students attending the School and/or Georgetown University, including the Honor Code and Student Code of Conduct among others. To review these policies, please visit the Handbooks page.
Academic Regulations and Policies
The SCS subscribes to the policies and procedures of The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences in regard to academic dishonesty, sanctions, and disposition of records.
If you believe you have a disability, then you should contact the Academic Resource Center (email@example.com) for further information. The Center is located in the Leavey Center, Suite 335. The Academic Resource Center is the campus office responsible for reviewing documentation provided by students with disabilities and for determining reasonable accommodations in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and University policies.
All students under age 26 attending school are required by D.C. Law 3-20 to present evidence of immunization against the following diseases: Poliomyelitis, Measles, Rubella (German Measles), Diphtheria, Mumps, and Tetanus. Also, the District of Columbia requires all new students, regardless of age, to complete the Tuberculosis form, Part III, p. 2. To obtain the form, please contact the Student Health Center at (202) 687-4500 or review their website.