Academic Standards

Academic Standards

To maintain good academic standing a student must meet the following requirements:

  1. Earn a grade-point average of at least 1.700 each semester.
  2. Earn a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.000 during the second semester of the first year and subsequently.
  3. Subsequent to the first year, earn a minimum of 24 credits in the two immediately preceding semesters, except graduating seniors completing degree requirements with a normal load for the final (eighth) semester of study who may complete fewer than 24 credits in the previous two semesters.
  4. Complete successfully the First-Year Seminars in the first full academic year after entrance. Any deficiency must be removed not later than the end of the fourth semester of college-level work or by the time the student has accumulated 57 degree credits, whichever occurs first.
  5. Maintain a minimum cumulative GPA in the major study of 2.000 beginning with the end of the fifth semester of college-level work. A student with a combined major must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.000 in each subject area of the major.

Transfer students, to be in good standing, must meet the minimum GPA requirements appropriate to their class standing as determined by the number of transfer credits accepted.

Any student who fails to meet the standards listed above, upon vote of the Board of Review, will receive one of the following:           

Academic Warning

A student who receives an academic warning from the Board of Review must correct the problem in the next semester. Transfer work may be used to address a credit deficiency Academic Warning, provided that the student completes the Request for Approval of Transfer Credit form prior to registering for coursework at another institution.

The following three actions require concurrence of the Council on Academic Standards.

Academic Probation

A student given academic probation is no longer in good academic standing and may be suspended or dismissed from the college if their performance in the next semester in residence fails to meet the minimum requirements for good standing, or fails to demonstrate sufficient progress toward that goal. Normally, a student will not be continued on probation for more than two consecutive terms.

A student on probation is restored to good standing when they completes the semester of probation with accomplishments that meet the minimum standards listed above.

Academic Suspension

A student who is suspended is not allowed to complete registration for classes until they have the approval of the Board of Review. To obtain such approval, the student is expected to submit a plan of study that demonstrates the feasibility of completing a degree at Whitman College.

Academic Dismissal

A student who had been dismissed from the college for failure to be in good standing may be reinstated on probation upon vote of the Board of Review in response to a written petition. This petition must state clearly what actions the student will take in order to return to good standing.

Challenge of Student Academic Assessment

The evaluation of a student’s academic performance is the responsibility of the person appointed to teach or supervise a course. A student who questions the validity of a faculty member’s evaluation should first confer with that faculty member. If the matter is not resolved, the student may confer with the Provost and Dean of the Faculty who may, in turn, confer with the faculty member. If the issue is not resolved through this conference, the student may petition the Board of Review to consider the case.

The Board of Review may decide not to hear the case, or, hearing the case, may take one of the following actions: 1) deny the petition; 2) in the case of an instructor no longer at the college, the Board of Review may, upon presentation of appropriate evidence, change the grade to credit or no credit; or 3) in the case of an instructor who is a current member of the faculty, the Board of Review may make recommendations concerning possible solutions to the problem.