Jun 06, 2023  
2019-2020 General Catalog 

Grades and Credits Policies


Academic Credit

The number of hours of course credit granted is based on the number of clock hours per week required in class attendance, laboratory work, and outside preparation. Credit is earned only when course requirements are met and a final exam or the equivalent is satisfactorily fulfilled. A one-credit course is equivalent to one hour of classroom instruction and a minimum of two (2) hours out-of-class student work for approximately a fifteen-week semester.* An equivalent amount of work is expected for laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the awarding of credit hours. Credit granted for individual courses, labs, or studio classes range from 1 to 15 credit hours per semester.

* SUU’s academic calendar is formulated using a class meeting schedule of 40 to 45 contact hours per 15-week semester for a three-credit course. Summer classes that operate on a compressed schedule are expected to be within the same 40 to 45 contact hour range for a three-credit course.

Academic Renewal

Undergraduate students currently enrolled at SUU may petition that their academic record be reviewed for the purpose of discounting, for cumulative GPA computation, a course with a “D+” (1.3) or lower grade. These classes must have been entered on the student’s academic record five (5) or more calendar years prior to the time of the request for review. The following conditions and procedures apply:

  • The renewal option may be used only once during a student’s undergraduate career.
  • Students pursuing a second baccalaureate degree or a graduate degree are ineligible.
  • Courses taken to meet a first undergraduate degree are ineligible for renewal once the degree has been posted.
  • “Renewed” courses do not count toward the total hours required for graduation.
  • Petition is made to the dean and advisor of the student’s major college or school.
  • Please be advised that performing an Academic Renewal may have an adverse effect on future financial aid. Please consult your academic and financial aid counselors before making this decision.
  • The student must be currently enrolled to request renewal.

Academic Standards

In order to remain in good academic standing, a student must achieve a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or “C” on all coursework. Students who are suspended from school for academic reasons in accordance with this policy may apply for readmission, after two (2) semesters, by writing a letter of application for readmission to the Chair of the Academic Standards and Admissions Committee. Information is available online at www.suu.edu/admissions/admission-review.html.

Appeals for returning students must be received no later than one week prior to the first day of classes for a given term.

Academic Standing

Academic Standing is based on a student’s semester and cumulative GPA as follows:

General Student Summary

Academic Standing (Probation) Status
Good Standing (00) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
< 2.0 > 2.0 Warning Level 1 (WA)
< 2.0 < 2.0 Probation Level 1 (P1)
Warning Level 1 (WA) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
< 2.0 > 2.0 Warning Level 2 (W2)
< 2.0 < 2.0 Probation Level 1 (P1)
Warning Level 2 (W2) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
< 2.0 > 2.0 Warning Level 2 (W2)
< 2.0 < 2.0 Probation Level 1 (P1)
Probation Level 1 (P1) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
> 2.0 < 2.0 Probation Level 2 (P2)
< 2.0 < 2.0 Probation Level 2 (P2)
Probation Level 2 (P2) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
> 2.0 < 2.0 Progressing Probation (P3)
< 2.0 < 2.0 Required to Withdraw (RW)
Progressing Probation (P3) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
> 2.0 < 2.0 Progressing Probation (P3)
< 2.0 < 2.0 Required to Withdraw (RW)

COMPASS Program Summary

Academic Standing (Probation) Status
COMPASS Probation Level 1 (C1) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
< 2.0 > 2.0 COMPASS Probation Level 2 (C2)
< 2.0 < 2.0 COMPASS Probation Level 2 (C2)
COMPASS Probation Level 2 (C2) > 2.0 > 2.0 Good Standing (00)
< 2.0 < 2.0 Required to Withdraw (RW)

Note: If a student transfers credit to Southern Utah University and is admitted on probation, they must attain at least a 2.0 GPA before the end of their second semester. If they fail to do so, they will be dismissed from the University. For more information on transferring credits and admission status, see Admissions .

If a student leaves the University while on probation, they will remain on probation when they return–even if in the meantime they have attended another institution. While on probation, students may be ineligible to receive financial aid and may be ineligible to participate in extracurricular activities sponsored by the University. For more information on these restrictions, see Tuition & Financial Aid  and the Southern Utah University Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy  .

Attendance Policy

A student is responsible for attending the courses for which they are enrolled. They are also responsible for making up any work missed by failing to attend class, even if the absence was approved by the University (see Policy 6.30 - Excused Absence), necessitated by illness, or personal emergency. In this sense, then, there are no “excused” absences.


Auditing students have the right of full participation in class. Students must register to audit any class during the normal registration period. Such audit hours will be part of their total load, and they shall pay tuition and fees at the same rate as students taking the course for credit. No credit toward graduation is awarded for audited courses. Students who do not participate or stop attending an audited course will receive a “W” (withdrawal) grade on their transcript.

Catalogs & Graduation Requirements

Entering students, including first-time and transfer students, will be required to complete the graduation, university, general education and program requirements listed in the catalog in effect when they first enroll, or in any subsequent catalog during their period of enrollment, which includes the catalog in effect when a student files for graduation. The following rules apply:

  • All graduation requirements must be met from a single catalog, with the following exception: Students seeking education licensure and/or endorsement will meet current state requirements.
  • If students choose a subsequent catalog different from the one they enrolled under, they may not return to their original catalog or any version of catalog that pre-dates the subsequent catalog they have chosen without permission of their academic dean and the Registrar’s Office.
  • Students cannot graduate under a catalog older than six (6) years for a bachelor’s degree (major or minor), three (3) years for an associate’s degree, or six (6) years for a master’s degree, respectively.
  • Students who seek and are approved for an enrollment deferral or interruption of their studies, through the Admissions Office, may take a leave of absence of up to five semesters, not including summers. Upon returning to SUU, students will have the option to select the original catalog at initial enrollment or the current catalog. The time a student is away, however, still counts toward the six-year life of their chosen catalog. A returning student that did not receive an approved leave of absence will be placed onto the current catalog upon reentry.

Change of Grades

Grades may be changed only for legitimate reasons by the instructor who submitted the original grade. The time limit on changing grades is two (2) years after the posting of the incorrect grade.

The Registrar’s Office will process a change of grade upon receipt of a “Change of Grade Card” from the instructor. The cards are obtained from the Registrar’s Office. These cards must not be delivered by students or student workers. The instructor may send them by campus mail or take them to the Registrar’s Office. A grade appeal process is also available through SUU Policy 6.19, Grade Appeal.

Continuing Education

Students enrolled in continuing education classes are not automatically admitted to an undergraduate or graduate program. They may be admitted to the University upon meeting the admissions requirements published in this catalog. Successful completion of continuing education courses (minimum GPA of 2.0) may be taken into consideration in making the admissions decision, but do not guarantee admission or readmission into the University. Continuing education coursework may not be applied to a student’s undergraduate program. Graduate credit may be awarded with approval by the student’s academic dean. Continuing education coursework may include 5000-level courses.

Cooperative Education

The cooperative education program is to provide students an opportunity to participate in a directed work experience for academic credit. Prior approval must be obtained to participate. The employer and a departmental faculty member will evaluate the proposed work experience and determine the credit to be awarded. Up to 12 credits may be applied toward a student’s major and up to six (6) may be applied to a minor program of study.

Work experience will not be offered until at least 27 credit hours have been earned in an associate degree program or until 80 credit hours have been earned in a baccalaureate program.

Additional information may be obtained through the appropriate academic dean’s office. Although the institution does not guarantee placement of every student who desires to participate, effort will be made to find a suitable work experience. Students participating in this program will register for credit and pay regular tuition and fees.

Credit by Examination & Individual Study

A total of 30 semester hours of credit may be achieved by a combination of special course examinations, credit by portfolio, prior learning assessment, or individual study. A maximum of 16 semester hours of credit may be acquired in any one academic discipline by special course examination. Permission to take special examinations for course credit must be obtained from the faculty member. Such permission will not be granted for the purpose of a change of grade if the student has already taken the course.

SUU provides several opportunities for students to obtain credit by examination or individual study:

  1. Advanced Placement Program (AP) and/or International Baccalaureate (IB)
  2. College Level Examination Program (CLEP)
  3. Foreign language experience
  4. Credit by Exam for a particular course of study
  5. Prior learning assessment
  6. Individual study

Request forms for Credit by Examination may be obtained from the Registrar’s Office.

The following are general guidelines in awarding credit for a particular course:

  1. Credit by Examination is given only to students currently enrolled at SUU.
  2. A maximum of 30 general education credit hours may be applied toward graduation from Credit by Examination and CLEP.
  3. A maximum of six (6) credit hours may be awarded in any one area of general education from a combination of Credit by Examination and CLEP.
  4. Class work taken prior to CLEP examination will be considered and may reduce the hours of credit awarded for a CLEP examination.
  5. A maximum of 16 credit hours may be acquired in any one academic discipline by special course examination or prior learning assessment. Such credit will be given only with the consent of the faculty member and the department head.
  6. Special Examination credit for languages will receive only a pass/fail grade. Students may receive a maximum of 16 credit hours per language by examination.
  7. With the exception of language credit, Credit by Examination may be granted as a standard letter grade or a pass/fail as agreed upon by the instructor and student.

Advanced Placement (AP)

Up to eight (8) semester hours of university credit will be granted for each Advanced Placement examination passed with a score of 3, 4, or 5. Credits earned through AP testing may be used to fill some of the General Education  requirements of the University. SUU does not limit the number of credits that may be acquired through Advanced Placement testing.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

A student may earn credit and complete some General Education  requirements by successfully completing selected CLEP examinations. Information regarding CLEP examinations and the credits a student may earn is available at www.suu.edu/academicsuccess/testing.html.

Credit by Portfolio & Prior Learning Assessment

Credit by Portfolio is designed specifically for people who have experience manifested by a portfolio and documented as their personal work by records or letters from those aware of the activity. The portfolio should already exist as a result of previous work and should not be something created for the purpose of gaining credit. The academic department granting credit must administer credit by portfolio on a course-by-course basis. The faculty, teaching the course for which credit is granted, award the pass/fail grade and credit. The credit by examination limits apply as stated above.

Credit for Military Service

  • Service members may be granted credits for military experience and courses, if specific requirements are met.
  • Students who have active military service may be granted PE 1098 - Wellness Dynamics  to fulfill the Social and Behavioral Sciences Knowledge Area requirement, plus another seven (7) elective credit hours. Service members with active military service must have completed Boot Camp with a minimum of 24 months of active service and received an honorable discharge or be on current orders. National Guard or a Reservist must have completed Boot Camp with a minimum of 48 months of service and received an honorable discharge or be on current orders.
  • Service members from the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, and Coast Guard have the option to submit an official copy of their Joint Services Transcript (JST) to SUU for additional credit evaluation.
  • Service members with a Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) / Air University transcript will be reviewed as a regionally-accredited institution of higher learning.
  • Military credit will be applied only if it can be applied to a legitimate undergraduate degree program and reduces the overall requirements of the student’s current degree.
  • Military credit is added to a student’s total credit hours completed and may reduce a student’s eligibility for financial aid.
  • More information can be found at www.suu.edu/veteransaffairs.

International Baccalaureate

High school students completing the International Baccalaureate Diploma will receive 30 credits and will have the knowledge areas of General Education  waived. The core areas of English, mathematics, and American Institutions must still be completed. Some of those areas may be waived with a score of 5, 6, or 7 in a higher-level examination for the appropriate area. Those not completing the IB diploma may receive a maximum of 8 credits per higher-level (HL) exam, with a score of 5, 6, or 7. Those students will receive the same credit awarded for Advanced Placement in the same subject. Credit is not given for standard (subsidiary, SL) examinations. Students should request the posting of the eligible credit through the Registrar’s Office.

Credit Hour Load

A full-time undergraduate student carries at least 12 credit hours each semester. (See Full-Time Status below.) Students may enroll in up to 18 credit hours. Students with an SUU grade point average of (3.5) or higher may enroll for additional credits, but additional tuition and fees may be incurred. To register for up to 21 credit hours a student must submit a Credit Overload Request form. To register for more than 21 credit hours, written approval of the academic dean and Student Success Advisor must be obtained. Approval must be obtained before registering.

A graduate student may enroll in 15 semester hours. Beyond this maximum credit hour load, the program director and dean’s approval is needed. Approval must be obtained before registering.

Extended Day, Outreach, & Electronic Delivery Credit

Extended day, outreach, or classes delivered through electronic media and taught by regular faculty at SUU shall count as resident credit. It is expected that some courses, particularly in major and minor fields, will have to be taught on campus due to facilities required.

Final Examinations

Each semester, a schedule for final examinations is published on the web. This schedule defines the dates and times during which all final examinations must be scheduled. All in-class final examinations must be given during the officially scheduled final examination period. An exception to the schedule is allowed only on an individual basis with the exception to be arranged between the instructor and the student. If a faculty member grants permission to take an early examination, students are charged an unscheduled final examination fee to be paid at the University Cashier’s Office.

Full-Time Status

To be considered full-time an undergraduate student should register for 12 or more credits per semester. Undergraduate students receiving federal financial aid and/or scholarship assistance must carry 12 credit hours per semester to be full-time students. Undergraduate students receiving veterans’ assistance must carry at least 12 credit hours per semester to be full-time students. To receive Stafford or PLUS loans, students must be enrolled at least half-time (undergraduate - 6 credits, graduate - 5 credits).

Grade Appeal

A student may request a change of grade for any of three reasons: (1) a clerical or computational error was made by the instructor in assigning the grade, (2) the instructor lost or damaged student work that had been completed and submitted as assigned, or (3) the instructor evaluated the student’s work on the basis of different factors than were used to evaluate the work of the other students in the course.

The student will first discuss the request for change of grade with the instructor. If the matter cannot be resolved, the student may appeal to the department head. If a resolution is still not reached, the student may appeal to the academic dean. Appeals to the dean must be initiated within six months of the end of the course. If discussion with the dean does not resolve the matter, the dean will refer the appeal to the College Grade Committee. The College Grade Committee will rule on the matter within two months of the date of the appeal to the dean. (Refer to the University Policies and Procedures 6.19 for additional information.)

Grade Reports

Grades are available via the mySUU student portal. If a student finds omissions or errors in a grade report, the student must make an application to the Registrar’s Office for a review of the record not later than the last day of the next semester in residence. All errors or omissions in student records will be researched and an attempt made to correct them.

Grading System

Southern Utah University uses a 4.0 grading scale. The table below lists the letter grades that instructors use to document their evaluation of your work and to document your academic status in the class. In addition, it defines the meaning of each letter grade and specifies the number of quality points that correspond to each grade. Quality points are used to determine your grade-point average (GPA). The procedure for calculating your GPA is described below, in How to Calculate Your Grade-Point Average (GPA).

Letter Grades
Letter Grade Meaning Quality Points per Credit Hour Used in GPA?
A Excellent 4.0 Yes
A- Excellent 3.7 Yes
B+ Above average 3.3 Yes
B Above average 3.0 Yes
B- Above average 2.7 Yes
C+ Average 2.3 Yes
C Average 2.0 Yes
C- Average 1.7 Yes
D+ Below average 1.3 Yes
D Below average 1.0 Yes
D- Below average 0.7 Yes
F Failure 0.0 Yes
UW Unofficial withdrawal 0.0 Yes
AU Audit 0.0 No
I Incomplete 0.0 (until changed to a letter grade) No
T Temporary 0.0 (until course is completed) No
P Passed 0.0 No
W Withdrawal 0.0 No
Z Grade not submitted 0.0 No
NR Incomplete thesis, graduate project, or other comparable task 0.0 No


“P” and “NC” grades were used during Spring 2020 semester due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. A “P” grade for that semester represents a “C” or higher grade; the “NC” grade represents a “C-” or lower. Neither grade is used in GPA calculations.


Graduate Courses for Undergraduates

Graduate Credit Opportunities for Undergraduates

Undergraduates have two possible options for earning graduate credits during their undergraduate experience:

Non-Graduate Bridge Option

An undergraduate student with senior standing and a GPA of at least 3.0 may enroll in 6000-level graduate courses provided that such enrollment does not cause the student’s total credit hour load to exceed 18 credits for the term. At the time of authorized enrollment, the student must choose whether the graduate credits will be applied toward electives within the baccalaureate program or reserved as graduate credit to be applied toward a graduate program at a future date. Graduate credits for a specific course earned under this provision cannot be applied simultaneously to both an undergraduate and graduate degree and program. Before registering for courses, the student must have the approval of the course instructor and the department chair where the credit will be applied. The credit may be used for graduate credit at SUU only after the student is admitted to a graduate program of the University. The maximum amount of such credit that will be accepted at SUU is 12 hours.

Graduate Bridge Option

In academic programs that strategically choose to participate, and at the level selected if participation is opted, SUU undergraduates may request to earn up to 12 graduate credits by taking SUU graduate courses in order to apply toward a SUU graduate degree program. The respective graduate program director must pre-emptively approve all such enrollment. Each course may only be attempted once.

Participating graduate programs are required to post their bridge policy, prior to implementation.

Once earned, the undergraduate student may submit a “petition for credit” to use the graduate credits toward undergraduate graduation. The 12 credits may also be applied toward the identified graduate program.

Graduation with Latin Honors

Graduation Latin honors are awarded to students receiving their first baccalaureate degree, according to the table below. Honors are awarded on the basis of all semesters completed, and the student’s final transcript remains the official record of any honors granted. At the time of graduation, a grade point average of at least 3.8 is required for the award of Summa Cum Laude, and an average of at least 3.6 is required for the award of Magna Cum Laude. (These are based on cumulative GPA including transfer credits). No honors are awarded for second baccalaureate or graduate degrees.

Graduation Honors
Cumulative Grade Point Average Honor
3.6 - 3.799 Magna Cum Laude
3.8 - 4.0 Summa Cum Laude

How to Calculate GPA

For each student, Southern Utah University calculates the grade point average (GPA) by dividing the total number of credits accumulated into the sum of all grade points earned. A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required for graduation but some departments maintain a higher GPA requirement. Grades of “P” or “F” may be given in certain courses where attendance or class activity is one of the major factors in determining performance.

Formula for Calculating Grade Point Average  

Total Quality Points Earned
______________________      =    GPA

GPA Hours


In calculating cumulative GPA, Southern Utah University uses courses taken at the university in a student’s current “career” and all courses that student has transferred from other post-secondary institutions–but only if the student received a final letter grade in those transferred courses. During any semester a student can be enrolled in one of three possible careers–undergraduate, graduate, or continuing studies. If a student repeated a nonrepeatable course, only the highest grade is used in calculating the overall cumulative GPA. (See repeated courses section.)

In calculating semester GPA, the formula uses only the quality points earned and quality hours taken that semester.

All GPA calculations exclude credits for:

  • pass/fail courses in which you received a final grade of P
  • courses that students registered for but later dropped from their schedule, even though the course may appear on the transcript with a final grade of W
  • courses in which students have received the grade of “I” for incomplete, “T” for temporary, or “NR”
  • courses taken under audit status (“AU”)
  • remedial courses (courses numbered below 1000)

Incomplete Grades

An incomplete grade is placed on a student’s record by the instructor when for some unforeseen reason the student is unable to complete the assigned coursework by the end of the semester/term and, through contract with the instructor, with copies of the contract filed in the instructor’s department and submitted to the Registrar’s Office at the time that grades are due, the student agrees to complete the work within the contract time (not to exceed 12 calendar months beyond the end of that term). An incomplete grade should be granted only if the student has completed the majority of the course (75% of the course) and is passing the class at the time. If the contract is not satisfied by the student, then the incomplete shall be changed by the instructor (or, if the instructor is not available, by the department chair) to the grade of “F” or the grade agreed upon by virtue of the contract. If no report is received by the Registrar’s Office, the grade will be changed automatically to an “F.” The student should not register again to complete the work of an incomplete. Students shall not be allowed to submit assignments or other work for grade changes outside of the term in which they are taking a class, unless an incomplete contract has been submitted to the Registrar’s Office. The only exception to this policy is for clerical error. (See grade appeal). The instructor is responsible for submission of a completed grade when the student has completed the required work.

Last Week of Classes

No final examination is to be due or administered prior to or during the designated study day (see final examination schedule) with the following exceptions:

  • In-lab or performance classes where it is necessary
  • A take-home final examination may be distributed during this time period
  • Homework, papers, problem sets, and projects may be due during this time frame

Old Credit

Students returning to college after a number of years should note that no credit earned more than 20 years prior to the date at which the credit is evaluated will be counted toward the credit requirement of the major or minor fields. This does not apply to general education credit. Certain departments may have more strict requirements.

Repeated Classes

  1. A student may repeat a course for grade change or improvement. The highest grade received will be used in computing the grade point average at graduation with “E” (Exclude) added to all other attempts of that course (see exception in 2). Courses taken at other colleges and repeated at SUU will not qualify for change of grade unless the student can provide the Registrar’s Office written proof from the appropriate SUU department that the courses involved were of similar content.
  2. A student may repeat a course more than once for credit which can apply toward graduation. However, a statement indicating the course can be repeated for credit must appear in the SUU Catalog course description. Unless such a statement is included in a course description, the repeated class shall not apply to the 120 credit hours required to graduate.
  3. The University reserves the right to deny access to courses for students wishing to enroll following a third attempt. The University will grant additional attempts based on the student’s ability to benefit as determined by the appropriate department or discipline. This is a general University policy; additional enrollment may be more restrictive in selective programs and courses (e.g., student teaching). As per Utah Board of Regent’s Tuition and Fees Policy 4.16, “tuition for repeating a course more than once shall be charged at the full cost of the instruction.”
  4. Courses which may be repeated for credit do not fall under (1) above when retaken for improvement of the grade. When requesting a GPA recalculation on these types of courses, the most recent grade must be used. Once a student has completed a course they may not receive credit for that course through credit by examination or replace a poor previous grade through credit by examination.
  5. Once a student has been awarded a baccalaureate degree, no factors related to that degree can be changed. Courses cannot be repeated to improve the GPA. 

Questions about Grades

For questions about grades and the above policies, contact the Registrar’s Office.