Jun 13, 2024  
2016-2017 Undergraduate Bulletin 
2016-2017 Undergraduate Bulletin [ARCHIVED BULLETIN]

Academic Policies

Students are required to abide by the academic policies of the University and the college in which their major resides. College policies may be more specific than University policies.

Academic Advising

All students are advised through the college in which they are enrolled. In some cases academic advising is coordinated by a professional advising staff, but in all colleges faculty members work closely with students to assist in selecting courses and majors. In many cases, faculty advisors also help students plan for graduate and professional school. Academic advising has a high priority at The University of Tulsa, and students are expected to see their advisors each term before enrolling. For further information on advising, visit Academic Resources, Advising and Support .


Admitted students will be instructed by the collegiate advising office regarding enrollment procedures. Continuing students should initiate enrollment with their collegiate advising office. Students must complete proficiency tests, placement exams, and other requirements prior to the start of the semester in which they wish to take a course for which proficiency, placement or other standing is required. Enrollment (including the addition of any courses to existing enrollment) will close at 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday of the second week of classes for the fall and spring semesters.


Students are classified on the basis of the number of credit hours earned. The classifications used are:

  • 0-29 hours - Freshman
  • 30-59 hours - Sophomore
  • 60-89 hours - Junior
  • 90+ hours - Senior

A student must be enrolled in at least 12 semester hours in fall or spring semesters to be considered a full-time student. A student must be enrolled in at least four semester hours in either the first or second summer term to be considered a full-time student. Enrollment in more than 18 hours during a semester requires special permission from the dean of the college. Additional tuition will be charged for each semester hour over 18.

Course classifications are:

  • 1000 - Freshman level
  • 2000 - Sophomore level
  • 3000 - Junior level
  • 4000 - Senior level
  • 5000 - Advanced Senior level courses taken with advisor consent only

The last digit of the course number indicates the number of credit hours for that course. One credit hour is the equivalent of 750 minutes in the classroom.

Credit by Examination

The maximum amount of credit towards a baccalaureate degree that may be awarded by examination is 36 hours. This may be awarded under any combination of the following types of credit by examination programs:

Advanced Placement Examinations

The University participates in the College Entrance Examination Board’s program of Advanced Placement (AP) examinations, which allows high school students to earn college credit. Official test scores must be forwarded directly from the Educational Testing Service to the Registrar. AP exam score requirements for credit may be obtained through the Office of Admission.

Proficiency Examinations

A program of advanced standing gives exceptionally qualified students a chance to earn credit by proficiency examinations. In order to be eligible to receive University of Tulsa credit through this program, students must be currently enrolled at the University. Proficiency tests are administered by University faculty only after the application has been completed in the Office of the Registrar and the required fee paid in the Office of the Bursar. The cost of proficiency examinations is specified in the Tuition and Fees  section of this Bulletin. Proficiency tests must be administered prior to the beginning of classes each term.

International Baccalaureate Program (IB)

The University of Tulsa will award students who complete the IB Diploma with a score of 28 or above at least 30 credits. Credit will also be awarded on a sliding scale to students completing the IB Diploma with a score below 28. Students should consult the collegiate advising offices for details. A list of courses credited for IB Examinations is available from the Office of the Registrar or the Office of Admission. Final determination of hours awarded is at the discretion of the collegiate advisor.

Transfer Credit

Official transcripts must be sent directly from the institution to the Office of Admission for entering students and the Office of the Registrar for continuing students.  No transfer credits will be awarded based on unofficial transcripts or transcripts that have not been sent directly from the transferring institution.

Credit earned at other institutions is evaluated after admission by the academic advisors in the college of enrollment. Transfer applicants will be notified in writing of their advanced standing and the number of hours remaining to complete a degree or certificate program at The University of Tulsa.

Transfer credit policies within the colleges may be more stringent that University policies. Students are advised to check the policies of their college. Students are required to abide by the transfer credit policies of the college in which their major resides.

Transfer work taken while a student at The University of Tulsa must be approved by the advisor in the student’s collegiate office prior to enrollment at the other university. Failure to receive prior approval from the dean’s office will result in work not being transferable to TU.

Transfer credit will be granted only for courses offered during a regular semester with a minimum three week term, and consistent with applicable academic standards of The University of Tulsa and its academic programs.

Coursework taken from accredited institutions and in which a grade of C or higher was earned is generally transferable. However, the total number of hours accepted in transfer may be higher than those accepted for a specific college or degree. Academic advisors in each college apply college policy to determine which courses apply towards the degree requirements and which would be considered “overage” (not applicable) in a chosen major. Consequently, the advising office of each college is responsible for  informing the student of the difference between the number of hours transferred into TU and those hours applicable toward the anticipated degree program.

Exceptions and policy on the transfer of collegiate requirements must be approved by the college dean. Credit is not granted for correspondence work. Experiential work will not be accepted in transfer. Community college work may not account for more than one-half the hours required for graduation from the University. The last 45 hours of course work must be completed in residence at The University of Tulsa.


Student academic performance is reviewed at the end of every fall and spring semester. Any student whose cumulative University of Tulsa grade point average falls below 2.0 (C) is automatically placed on probation. A student on academic probation may be required to make up course deficiencies, accept limitations on enrollment, or abide by limitations on extracurricular activities, as determined by the dean of the college in which the student is enrolled.

In order to be removed from academic probation, students must raise their University of Tulsa cumulative grade point average to at least 2.0 and fulfill any other conditions imposed by the dean. The decision to remove a student from academic probation may be made only by the dean of the college in which the student is enrolled. Students may ask to be removed from probation at the end of a summer session if they have raised their cumulative grade point average at The University of Tulsa to at least 2.0. Students placed on probation cannot be removed from probation with work taken outside The University of Tulsa.

A student may be placed on probation or dismissed from a college by the dean of that college for reasons other than poor grades, even if he or she is in good academic standing otherwise. This includes, but is not limited to, the falsification of application materials including academic records, failure to satisfy stipulations imposed upon admission to the program, failure to maintain the standards of academic, ethical, or professional integrity expected in a particular discipline or program, and failure to satisfy these or other program or college requirements in a timely fashion.


Students who remain on probation for two consecutive semesters are subject to dismissal from the University. Those who fail more than 50 percent of their grade point hours or earn a grade point average of 1.0 or lower for any academic year are subject to dismissal even if they have not been on probation previously.

Dismissal decisions are made by a student’s collegiate dean based on the student’s academic performance. Extenuating circumstances may cause a collegiate dean to place or continue a student on probation. If the collegiate dean elects to continue a student on probation for additional semesters, the dean has the option of dismissing the student at the end of any subsequent regular semester that the student continues to be on probation. No student may continue on probation for more than four consecutive semesters.

A student dismissed for academic reasons cannot under normal circumstances be readmitted to The University of Tulsa until one calendar year has elapsed since the last term in which the student was registered. Readmission requires permission from the dean of the readmitting college. Credit earned at another college or university by a student during the dismissal period is not applied for credit toward a degree from The University of Tulsa unless approved by the readmitting dean.


Grading System

The following grades are assigned: A (superior), B (above average), C (average), D (below average), P (pass), I (incomplete), F (failure), W (withdrew), AU (audit), MG (missing grade), and NG (course still in progress).

Policy on Incomplete Grades

Undergraduate students who are doing passing work but who, because of serious illness or other legitimate extenuating circumstances, cannot complete their course work may, at the discretion of the instructor, receive a grade of I (incomplete). Incompletes will not be granted without an exceptionally good reason to students who have been absent excessively during the term nor to students who have merely failed to complete course work.

When the instructor grants an incomplete, a Record of Incomplete form must be completed and filed in the office of the undergraduate dean. This form, which is signed by the instructor and student, specifies what must be done to remove the incomplete and gives a deadline for the completion of the unfinished work. The contract is attached to the course grade report for inclusion in the student’s official file in the Office of the Registrar.

The incomplete grade will remain on the student record for no more than one year. After that time, unless the coursework is completed or the instructor is able to assign a grade, the Office of the Registrar will change the I to an F. Students with more than nine credits of I will not be permitted to enroll in courses at the University without the permission of the collegiate dean

Undergraduate degrees will not be conferred until all incompletes are removed from the undergraduate record.

Pass-Fail Option

Subject to certain restrictions, each college allows students to take a limited number of courses on a pass-fail basis. For regular term courses the request must be made in writing to the collegiate advising office within the first three weeks of the term. For short courses, including summer terms, the deadlines are based on one day for each week of class time; for example, a request must be made within the first six days of a six-week term. Deadlines for declaring this option are not subject to change. For further limitations imposed by a particular college, consult the office of the collegiate dean. Grades of C or higher in such courses will be recorded as P (pass). Grades of D will be recorded as D and grades of F as F and are calculated in the grade point average. In a limited number of courses the only grade offered is Pass/D-F.

Grade Point Averaging

Grade points are computed as follows: four points for each semester hour of A, three points for each semester hour of B, two points per hour of C, one point per hour of D, and 0 points for F. The University offers a limited number of courses graded as Pass/D-F only, with no option for an A, B, or other letter grade.

To determine a grade point average, total number of semester hours attempted at The University of Tulsa are divided into the total number of grade points earned at The University of Tulsa, except: (1) hours earned with a grade of P and grades designated as I, AU, or N are omitted from this calculation, and (2) only the last grade earned when a course has been repeated is used in the grade point calculation.

Repeating a Course

An undergraduate student may repeat a course up to two times and will be charged the usual fees each time. Students are not allowed to repeat a course in which they have an “incomplete” pending. Additional repeating of a course may be allowed only with written approval from the dean of the student’s college of enrollment. When a course is repeated, only the most recent grade earned in the course will be included when calculating the student’s cumulative grade point average.

Honor Rolls

At the end of the fall and spring semesters, the President’s Honor Roll and the Dean’s Honor Roll are determined based on current semester grades only. For the Dean’s Honor Roll, the student must have at least twelve graded hours and at least a 3.500 term grade point average. The President’s Honor Roll requires at least twelve graded hours and a term grade point average of 4.000. Graded hours include grades of A, B, C, D, and F. Passes and incompletes are not included in graded hours. The University does not round up grade point averages for these criteria to be met.

Excused Absences

Students who participate in an officially sanctioned, scheduled activity shall be given an opportunity to make up exams or other assignments that are missed as a result of this participation. The manner in which missed tests or other assignments are made up is left to the discretion of each individual faculty member; however, students shall not be penalized and should be informed of the instructor’s makeup policy, preferably in writing, at the beginning of each semester. It is the responsibility of the student to make arrangements with the instructor prior to the scheduled exam or other missed assignment. Only absences reported by the Registrar to the faculty will be considered excused.

Students who are absent for personal reasons (e.g., contagious illness requiring quarantine, significant hospitalization, a death in the immediate family) are covered by the Absence Notification Policy of the Center for Student Academic Support. All absences are considered on a case-by-case basis by the instructor in accordance with the policies of the academic unit and college.


Students who elect to audit a course will have all the responsibilities and privileges of students taking the course for credit, except those of taking the final examination or receiving credit for the course. Auditors who have completed all other requirements for a course may elect to take the course for credit at any time within the first three weeks of a regular semester if the course instructor and the college dean give their permission. The schedule for auditing courses during the summer term should be obtained from the Office of the Registrar.

Students originally enrolled in a course for credit may elect to change their status to that of auditor at any time within the first three weeks of a regular semester if they are passing the course at the time that the change in status is requested, and if they secure the consent of the course instructor. Students must complete a drop/add form and secure permission from the collegiate dean in order to make such a change.

Students who enroll in a course for audit but fail to attend the class may be withdrawn at the request of the instructor and the approval of the academic dean. The University’s normal refund policy for withdrawals will apply.


Voluntary Withdrawal from the University

Official withdrawal from the University requires a standard procedure originated through the office of the collegiate dean. It is financially and academically advantageous to students to follow the official withdrawal procedure. Students withdrawing prior to the start of the seventh week of a regular semester are entitled to a partial refund of tuition calculated from the date of their official withdrawal. Withdrawals from the University are not permitted after the twelfth week of a regular semester. Nonattendance of classes does not constitute official withdrawal.

Medical/Psychological Withdrawals or Leaves of Absence

Students wishing to withdraw or take a leave of absence from the University based on a medical or psychological reason should contact the Center for Student Academic Support to discuss their reasons for seeking a withdrawal or a leave of absence, the medical documentation required, their plans while on leave, and to work out any conditions that may be necessary for an easier transition back to The University of Tulsa. It should be noted that a student may voluntarily withdraw before the twelfth week of classes through the normal withdrawal process. The complete policies are available from the Center for Student Academic Support.

“W” grades will be assigned to all classes for the current semester if a medical/psychological withdrawal is granted. Students who have not completed the process will be assigned permanent grades by the instructor. Retroactive grade changes are not permitted.

The Center for Student Academic Support will maintain all documentation in confidential student files and will provide verification of appropriate documentation as needed. A medical/psychological withdrawal does not negate the student’s financial responsibility to the University. Students should contact the Office of the Bursar, Housing and Dining, and Student Financial Services regarding outstanding fees, bills, refunds and other charges related to their enrollment or withdrawal.

Withdrawal from the University for Military Service

Students who are called to active military duty at any time during their enrollment will be eligible for a full refund or credit of their tuition for the semester of their withdrawal. Students are strongly encouraged to discuss their situation with their academic advisor to consider alternate arrangements. For example, students who are called to report for active duty near the end of a semester may choose to take “incompletes” in their courses, rather than repeating the entire semester when they return to the University. The University will work closely with students to minimize the impact a withdrawal will have on their academic progress. All students called to active military duty are required to meet with the Veteran’s Coordinator in the Office of the Registrar.

Non-voluntary Withdrawal from the University

Students may be required to withdraw from the University for habitual absence from class, habitual idleness, or any other behavior that prevents them from fulfilling the purposes implied by their registration in the University. A grade of “W” will be entered for each of the courses in which a student is registered. Students who have been required to withdraw must apply for readmission to their dean in the same manner as that required of a suspended student.

Voluntary Withdrawal from a Course

Withdrawal from a course prior to the start of the fourth week of a regular semester is considered a cancellation of enrollment, and the course is not shown on students’ academic records.

Withdrawal from a course after the start of the fourth week and up to and including the twelfth week of a regular semester will be considered a partial enrollment for which a grade of W (withdrew) will be recorded.

Withdrawals are not permitted after the end of the twelfth week of a regular semester. The schedule for withdrawal from courses and refund of tuition is printed in the Schedule of Courses for each semester. Any formal withdrawal shall constitute a forfeiture of any and all right to the subsequent make-up of incomplete grades.

Non-voluntary Withdrawal from a Course

Students may be withdrawn from a course for habitual behavior which prevents the student or other students from fulfilling the purposes implied by registration in the University. A grade of “W” will be entered for the course in which the student was registered.

Degree Requirements

All degrees are awarded by a vote of the University’s Board of Trustees upon recommendation by the faculty. Students must complete their prescribed curricula with at least a 2.0 (C) grade point average in order to become candidates for a degree and must meet the additional degree requirements of their college. Transfer students must have at least a 2.0 (C) grade point average in work taken at The University of Tulsa.

Minimum Hours Required

All undergraduate degrees from The University of Tulsa require a minimum of 124 hours for completion. Depending upon the major, students in The Henry Kendall College of Arts and Sciences  must complete between 124 and 131 credit hours to graduate. Students in the The Collins College of Business  must complete 124 credit hours to graduate. Students in The Oxley College of Health Sciences  must complete between 124 and 126 credit hours to graduate. Students in The College of Engineering and Natural Sciences  must complete between 124 and 134 credit hours to graduate. For further information on these minimums, consult the appropriate collegiate advising office.

Residency Requirement

The last 45 semester hours in any degree program (major) must be completed in residence.

Double Majors

Students who wish to major in two different fields may do so by completing the minimum number of hours for each major. Double majors may be pursued either in one college or in two different colleges, but in the latter case, the permission of the deans of both colleges must be obtained at the time the second major is declared.

Double Degrees

Normally, to receive a second Bachelor’s degree, a student must fulfill the minimum number of hours/specific requirements for each degree program. Credit hours may be applied to more than one degree program only with permission from the dean of the college in which the degree program is offered.

Graduation Check

A graduation check is made in the first semester of the senior year by the collegiate advising office to ensure that all degree requirements will be met in a timely manner. A student will graduate at the end of the semester in which all degree requirements were met. Students must file a degree application at the time of registration for the final semester. The University will confer a degree on a student who has completed all of the requirements for the degree even though the student has not applied for graduation.

Commencement Participation

The University holds commencement ceremonies in December and May. Students who complete degree requirements in the fall are to participate in that year’s December commencement, and those completing their requirements in the spring are to participate in commencement that May. In the spring semester, students in good standing who lack up to 12 hours of course work that they have enrolled to complete in the upcoming summer session are permitted to take part in the May commencement. Any exceptions to this policy must be cleared by the appropriate collegiate dean. Honors will not be called for students graduating during the summer, and are called for fall and spring graduates based upon the cumulative grade point average earned as of the end of the prior regular term.

Graduation with Honor

Students who maintain a 4.0 grade point average in all undergraduate courses taken at TU graduate summa cum laude; those with a 3.8 or higher, magna cum laude; and those with a 3.5 or higher, cum laude. These designations appear on the official transcript and on the diploma.

Transfer of Records

The Office of the Registrar will forward official transcripts to other institutions or prospective employers when requested in writing by the student. Transcripts will not be issued for students who have not met their financial obligations to the University.

The University does not issue unofficial transcripts or copies of transcripts from other institutions.

Reading Days

No academic activities including classes, labs, or assignments will be scheduled during designated reading days prior to final exams at the end of each semester.

Student Responsibility

The University strives to provide stimulating instruction, rigorous curricula, and challenging academic standards. Collegiate deans and academic advisors are willing to help explain available options, describe requirements, and plan degree programs. Nonetheless, students ultimately are responsible for proper enrollment, attainment of acceptable academic standards, and fulfillment of graduation requirements. Students who fail to maintain minimum standards are subject to probation or dismissal from the University.

At the beginning of each semester and again before midterm, faculty are encouraged to report the names of students who are doing unsatisfactory work to the collegiate advising office and the Center for Student Academic Support. The Center for Student Academic Support, as part of the University’s Retention Alert Program, then notifies the students. At the first sign of academic difficulty, responsible students should ask instructors for help and should seek the assistance of the collegiate academic advisors and the Center for Student Academic Support.

Academic Honesty

In keeping with the intellectual ideals, standards for community, and educational mission of the University, students are expected to adhere to all academic policies. Cheating on examinations, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty violate both individual honor and the life of the community, and may subject students to penalties including failing grades, dismissal, and other disciplinary actions.

Academic misconduct also includes unauthorized or inappropriate use of University computers, vandalism of data files or equipment, use of computer resources for personal reasons unrelated to the academic and research activities of the University, plagiarism, violation of proprietary agreements, theft, tampering with the programs and data of other users, and inappropriate behavior that unreasonably interferes with the educational process and the rights of others to pursue their educational goals.

Specific policies exist in the various colleges in addition to the overall University policies published in this Bulletin and other campus policy guides.