All students must submit original work. Academic dishonesty constitutes a serious violation of scholastic standards and can result in denial of credit and possible dismissal from school. Any act that involves misrepresentation regarding the student’s academic work is forbidden. Academic dishonesty includes cheating on assignments or exams, plagiarism, and submission of the same paper in more than one course without prior consent of all instructors concerned. Students charged with academic dishonesty have the right to appeal any disciplining action through the regular appeal process of the Seminary.
Each degree program student is assigned an advisor. In order to stay on track for graduation and to know which classes are best taken when, students need to consult with their advisors prior to registration for each semester.
- Master of Arts in Religion / Course Checklist 11/13 Catalog
- Master of Divinity / Course Checklist 11/13 Catalog
- Graduate Certificate of Christian Studies / Course Checklist 11/13 Catalog
Appeals Process for Academic Matters
If a student believes there is a justifiable concern about any matter of academic procedure, he or she should first confer with the instructor about the problem. If a satisfactory solution is not reached, an appeal may be made to Academic Affairs. This appeal must be submitted by the student in writing within six months of the date the problem arose. The student will be advised in writing of the decision of Academic Affairs. If the student desires to make a final appeal, this must be made in writing to the President of the Seminary, whose decision is final.
Before graduating, each student is required to hand in an assessment portfolio. Each student’s portfolio is made up of a selection of papers that the student wrote while attending UTS. The purpose of the portfolio is to demonstrate the students’ academic growth. The assessment requirements can be found in the student assessment handbook, and the required course GN 700 Integrative Senior Seminar helps students complete the assembling of materials for their assessment portfolio.
Attendance in Class
Students are expected to attend all scheduled class sessions. Students with excessive absences may experience lowered grades. Absence from class due to illness or other emergency must be communicated to the class instructor. The student, with the instructor’s approval, must arrange for any required make-up assignments.
Everyone is welcome to audit seminary courses. Before a visiting student audits a course for the first time, that individual needs to fill out the New Visiting Student Application and return it to the office. That student will then receive instructions for registering for courses. Auditors attend the course sessions, and may do as much of the work that they wish, but are not required to do anything outside of class. Students who register to audit a course but then decide that they want to take it for credit must change their registration before the Add/Drop date.
Change in Degree Program
If a student wishes to change programs once they have been accepted into a program, a formal written request for must be sent to the Admissions Committee. If the application process for the program they wish to apply to has more requirements than the program they are currently in, the student needs to complete the application process for the new program.
Change of Grade
If a student feels that he or she has been assigned an incorrect grade for a course, the following procedure will be followed: (1) Schedule an appointment with the instructor within 30 days after the end of the semester. (2) If the consultation with the professor results in change of the previously assigned grade, the student must provide the professor with the Change of Grade form available from the Seminary office and secure the professor’s signature on the form. The professor will then return the completed form to the Seminary office.
Changes in Registration
The Add/Drop period extends through the second week of classes. During this time, a student may add or drop a course in their populi account. Absence from class sessions alone will not constitute withdrawal from a class for which a student is registered. If for some reason a student needs to change registration after the add/drop date, that student needs to contact the dean’s office to discuss their options. Students are allowed to change from credit to audit through the ninth week of class. If a student changes from a credit to an audit, the tuition they have paid will be first applied to the charge for auditing the course and the remainder will be refunded based on the pro-rated refund scale. Students who drop a course after the close of the Add/Drop period but before the end of the ninth week of class will receive a W on the semester grade report and transcript. If a student drops a course after the ninth week of the semester for reasons other than health and emergency (see below), the grade of F will be assigned. If a student chooses to drop a class after the end of the Add/Drop period, any refund will be based on a pro-rated scale.
Dismissal for Academic Reasons
If a student on probation fails to raise the cumulative grade point average to the required level for the degree programs (a 2.5 average, see “Minimum GPA for Graduation”) by the end of two semesters, the student will be academically dismissed from the Seminary. After academic dismissal from Urbana Seminary, a student must wait one full semester before reapplying. Applications for readmission are considered on a case-by-case basis.
When percentage equivalents are used as a basis for assigning letter grades, the following equivalents will be the standard of the Seminary:
A 92.5 – 100
A- 89.5 – 92.4
B+ 86.5 – 89.4
B 82.5 – 86.4
B- 79.5 – 82.4
C+ 76.5 – 79.4
C 72.5 – 76.4
C- 69.5 – 72.4
D+ 66.5 – 69.4
D 62.5 – 66.4
D- 59.5 – 62.4
F 0.0 – 59.4
Other evaluations that can be assigned include:
W Withdrawal, no credit assigned
A grade of I (Incomplete) indicates that the required work for the semester has not been completed due to circumstances beyond the student’s control. That student is expected to meet with the professor in order to create a timeline in order to finish the work, and the professor must inform the dean’s office that an incomplete has been assigned. Specific policies are at the discretion of the instructor. Through formal syllabi distributed at the beginning of each course, students will be informed of all grading procedures for specific courses.
Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated on the following scale:
Graduation with Honors
The following criteria are established for the determination of graduation honors for students in the master’s degree programs. Students who achieve a 3.50 final cumulative grade point average will be graduated cum laude; those who achieve a 3.75 final cumulative GPA will be graduated magna cum laude; and those who achieve a 3.90 final cumulative GPA will be graduated summa cum laude.
Incomplete Course Work
Students are expected to submit all work by the dates course instructors set and complete all course requirements on or before the last day of the term. Request for an extension at the end of a semester must be made to the professor and the dean’s office must be informed if an extension is granted. When extensions are approved, the date for completion of the work will be arranged with the instructor. The granting of such an extension is not automatic. The grade I (Incomplete) is temporary.
Students may earn a limited amount of credit through independent study. The work done must be equivalent to regular Seminary courses, in which one credit hour = 45 hours of work. An independent study includes reading, writing, and research projects which are completed under the direction of one of the seminary faculty members. Students desiring an independent study must first meet with the professor who will work with them. The professor and Academic Affairs must approve all proposals. A copy of the proposal and the final report on the study will become a part of the student’s permanent file. No more than 20 percent of the total hours for a degree may be fulfilled through independent study.
Students will not receive credit for life experience.
Minimum GPA for Graduation
A minimum grade point average of a 2.5 on a 4.0 scale must be attained in order to graduate with a Master of Divinity, a Master of Arts in Religion, or a Graduate Certificate.
Probation for Enrolled Students
A student may be placed on academic probation in any semester in which his or her cumulative GPA falls below 2.5. after the second semester of a program has been completed. Academic probation serves as a warning that the student’s work is not of sufficient quality to receive the desired degree. Following consultation with the student’s academic advisor, a student will be permitted to enroll for classes during the semester of academic probation. The student will remain on probation as long as the cumulative GPA remains below 2.5. If a student on probation fails to raise the cumulative grade-point average to the required level by the end of two semesters, the student will be dismissed from the Seminary.
For all programs, 50 percent of the course credits applied toward the degree must be satisfied through Urbana Seminary course work. The final 12 hours for any program must be taken as a resident student through Urbana Seminary course work.
Retake a Course
Students are allowed to retake a course if an unsatisfactory grade has been earned. When a course is repeated, both grades will appear on the transcript, but only the second is counted for credit hours and in the grade point average.
Second Master’s Degrees
If a graduate with a master’s degree from Urbana Seminary wishes to pursue a second master’s degree from the Seminary, a minimum of 24 hours must be taken in the new program before obtaining the second master’s degree. Students must meet all specific requirements of the new degree before it will be awarded.
Student’s Rights of Privacy
Urbana Seminary accords to all students the rights outlined under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 as amended. The Seminary respects the student’s privacy and chooses not to give out information on students on a regular basis. The school does have the right to release general information at its discretion, including the student’s name, e-mail address, street address, telephone number, program, and dates of attendance. If any student wishes this information withheld, he or she may write to the Seminary office and the request will be honored. Other information from the student’s educational record is considered confidential and available for review only by appropriate employees of the Seminary. Other information may be made available in the event of an emergency to protect the health and safety of the student and others. In such cases, only information considered pertinent will be released.
Transfer Of Credit
Students may be able to transfer credit for coursework taken at other institutions. We have articulation agreements with Lincoln Christian University and Columbia International Seminary, but we will consider transfer credits from other institutions. In order to have your credits from another institution considered for transfer, you must first write a letter to Academic Affairs, and then have transcripts of all classes you wish to transfer sent to Urbana Seminary. The credit received must be on the graduate level. Transfer credit will not be granted for undergraduate work or for graduate course work applied to an undergraduate degree. If a student has completed a master’s degree at another institution, possible transfer credit will be limited to a maximum of 50 percent of the total credits associated with the shorter degree. Transfer of credit is not automatic, and in some cases academic affairs may need to see other supporting information such as a syllabus in order to make their final decision.
Each semester during the regular school year Urbana Seminary offers one undergraduate class for which students can earn credit that transfers into any state University in Illinois, including U of I. For more information contact the office.
For teachers at ACSI-accredited schools, we offer a limited number of courses that fulfill the ECU requirements. Please contact the office to find out which classes are being offered this semester.
ECUs for Endorsements
More information coming soon.