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University regulations are established to provide for the academic progress of students, the welfare of the community, and the orderly conduct of university affairs. Occasionally, exceptions are necessary to fulfill these goals. Individual students seeking exceptions to regulations should petition the appropriate committee or person. Petitions for exceptions to academic regulations should be directed to the Faculty Subcommittee on Administration (forms are available in the Registrar's Office or in the Office of Student Academic Services); petitions for exceptions to conservatory requirements should be directed to the Conservatory Committee on Administration (forms are available in the conservatory office); petitions concerning campus life should be directed to the Dean of Students; and petitions concerning business affairs should be sent to the Vice President for Business Affairs. Information concerning campus life or business affairs petitions may be obtained from the Dean of Students Office or Financial Services, respectively.
Each petition must provide a clear and detailed statement of the exceptions requested and the reasons why the student believes the exception should be made. The student must review the petition with his or her faculty advisor who must sign and comment on the petition. Other parties, such as department chairs, course instructors, etc., should also be consulted when appropriate.
Petitions will be reviewed on a regular basis and the decisions are communicated directly to the student.
Students are required to declare a major by the beginning of their junior year but may do so at any time by completing a form available in the Registrar's Office. Students must also have an academic advisor in their major department no later than the beginning of their junior year. The formal declaration of a major and change of advisors does not preclude students from seeking additional counsel about their academic programs from any member of the faculty.
Students in the Bachelor of Music degree program must be admitted to a major before they may declare one. Admission to a major generally takes the form of successful completion of a qualifying examination at the end of the sophomore year.
An advisor will not be offended if a student wishes to change. To change advisors, the student must simply complete a form available from the Registrar or the Dean of Student Academic Services. He or she then must obtain the signature of the new advisor and return the form to the Registrar, who asks the former advisor to forward your advising material to the new advisor.
Any student who needs help identifying a new advisor should see the Dean of Student Academic Services. Students are encouraged to consult with other faculty members or the Office of the Dean of Student Academic Services for further advice.
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Students who have completed 54 units may elect to take one course per term outside their major/minor and major/minor department on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis. Students who carry 24 or more units may also exercise the S/U option for the overload course. No more than four grades of S or U resulting from the option may appear on a student's transcript at any one time.
Students may, at any time (e.g., during the term in which a course is taken S/U or after the course has been completed), change the basis of grading in a course from S/U to a letter grade; they may not change from a letter grade to S/U. Instructors submit letter grades (A-F) for all courses not offered strictly on an S/U basis. The Registrar then converts the letter grades to S or U for those students who have elected the S/U option. Grades of C- or above become Satisfactory; grades of D+ or below become Unsatisfactory. A satisfactory performance ensures course credit toward graduation but does not affect grade-point averages. An unsatisfactory performance does not confer course credit, nor does it affect the grade-point average.
Students are permitted to withdraw passing (WP) from one of their courses after the second week of classes and through the Friday of the seventh week of classes. The instructor must confirm the student's last date of attendance and certify the student completed all work and earned a passing grade. Written acknowledgement from the student's faculty advisor also is required. A form is available from the Registrar's Office for this purpose. The grade of WP is recorded on the student's record but has no effect on the grade-point averages.
A student must petition the Faculty Subcommittee on Administration to withdraw passing if any of the following apply. He or she: (1) is withdrawing from more than one course in the term, (2) has already withdrawn from three courses during his or her career at Lawrence, (3) is on probation, or (4) is unable to complete the course after the seventh-week deadline.
Students may withdraw failing from a course through the last day of classes for the term with the permission of the instructor, the faculty advisor, and the Dean of Student Academic Services. A grade of WF is recorded on the student's record and appears in the grade-point averages as an F grade.
Students who officially withdraw from the university during the term will have grades of WP and WF posted on their record depending on whether they were passing or failing their courses at the time of withdrawal. WF grades in this particular case will not be included in the grade-point averages.
Click here for the withdraw passing form (PDF).
To withdraw failing from a course, please schedule an appointment with the Dean of Student Academic Services.
Students are permitted to repeat courses in which a grade of F is received. Both the original F and the new grade will be recorded on the permanent record. Only the second grade, however, will count in the degree GPA. If the course is in the student's major or minor department, only the second grade will count in the major or minor GPA. Both the original F and the repeat grade will count in the composite GPA.
Students who have withdrawn from a course (WP or WF) have not completed the course and are free to take it again. A grade of WF is treated like an F when a course is repeated. Only the grade for the repeated courses will count in the degree and major GPAs. Both the original WF and the repeat grade will count in the composite GPA.
Students must submit a repeat-course form to the Registrar's Office to initiate the procedure for repeating a course.
Various courses offered by the university fall under multiple departments because they relate to more than one discipline. Known as cross-listed courses, they may be applied differently to major and/or general education requirements depending on the department in which the course is listed. A student may fill out this form to change how the course appears on his or her transcript. This change may affect how the course is applied to that student's degree program.
The course is listed in the "parent" or main department first. If a student wishes to have it listed instead in the secondary department, he or she must complete the Cross-List Request Form available on this site or from the Registrar. This form does not require an advisor or instructor's signature.
A tutorial is a course of study undertaken by an individual student or small group of students under the close supervision of a faculty member. According to arrangements specific to individual departments and interdisciplinary areas, students enrolling in tutorials explore in depth subjects of particular interest. Tutorial studies feature wide reading, individual experimentation, and oral and written reports, as well as regular conferences with the supervising faculty members. Tutorials are an important supplement to regular course offerings, especially during the junior and senior years. All tutorials must be titled.
To illustrate the variety and scope of tutorial studies, many academic departments have listed a number of recent tutorial topics at the end of their departmental listings in the "Courses of Study" section of the Lawrence University Course Catalog.
Independent study varies from discipline to discipline in its composition and in the relationship between the student and faculty member. However, certain criteria may be applied to all. At the outset, the student and faculty member should define a clear goal, one to which they both subscribe. A student is entitled to know a faculty member's expectations for independent study, and a faculty member is entitled to expect a student's diligent compliance with the procedures mutually agreed upon when the project began.
For independent study lasting more than one term, the student and faculty member should discuss and assess progress at the end of each term. If either party concludes that it would not be beneficial for the student to continue the project, the student may be assigned a grade for completed or additionally assigned work and not be required to enroll for the next term.
Independent study can designate advanced work taken for credit by a student who plans to submit an honors project.
Lawrence recognizes that a student's education can be enhanced by the combination of academic and experience-based learning. Academic internships provide students an opportunity to apply what they have learned in the classroom and to bring back to the classroom an enriched perspective on their learning. Such a work experience also may be valuable as students make career decisions.
Students enrolled in academic internships work at jobs that relate to their academic interests. Designated supervisors work closely with the students and provide evaluations of the students' activities at the end of the internships.
The academic component of the internship, carried out under the direction of a faculty supervisor, includes readings related to the substance of the internship, discussions with the faculty supervisor, and a written report appropriate to the discipline. Course grades are based on this academic work.
Academic internships normally are developed by departments that find the interaction of academic pursuits and work experience both appropriate to their discipline and feasible in terms of available work experiences. These internships are listed in the catalog under departmental offerings. Where no departmental internship exists, student-proposed internships are possible if the student obtains approval from the appropriate department and from the Committee on Instruction. Proposals must be submitted to the Committee on Instruction by the end of the fifth week of the term before the start of the internship.
One form is used for tutorials, independent study, and internships.