How can I drop a course?
A student can withdraw from a class online during the first 60% of a term. If a student withdraws within the first 15 % of the semester, no record of the enrollment appears on the student’s transcript. If a student withdraws after the 15% date and before completion of 60% of a session, he/she will be assigned a grade of “W”. Withdrawal after the 60% deadline date can be granted only with documented mitigating circumstances. In the case of mitigating circumstances, students must complete the Drop/Add form and get it signed by the instructor, counselor, and vice president of Instruction and Student Services. All students receiving financial aid should check with the Financial Aid Office to determine the effect on their award and continued eligibility.
How can I get an Incomplete (“I”) grade? Incomplete grades may be given only through a student/faculty consultation and can be used only for verifiable unavoidable reasons.
No grade point credit. The “I” grade is to be used only for verifiable unavoidable reasons that a student is unable to complete a course within the normal course time. To be eligible to receive an “I’ grade, the students must (1) have satisfactorily completed more than 50% of the course requirements and (2) must request the faculty member to assign the “I” grade and indicate why it is warranted. The faculty member has the discretion to decide whether the “I” grade will be awarded. Since the “incomplete” extends enrollment in the course, requirements for satisfactory completion shall be established through consultation between the faculty member and the student. In assigning the “I” grade, the faculty member must complete documentation that (1) states the reason for assigning the grade; (2) specifies the work to be completed and indicates it percentage in relation to the total work of the course; (3) specifies the date by which the work must be completed; and (4) identifies the default grade (B, C, D, F, P, R, or U) based upon course work already completed. Completion dates may not be set beyond the subsequent semester (to include summer term) without written approval of the Chief Academic Officer of the campus. The student will be provided a copy of the documentation. A grade of “F” will be assigned at the end of the subsequent semester unless the “I” grade is changed by the faculty member through the normal grade change processes. An “I” grade will be changed to a “W” only under documented mitigating circumstances which must be approved by the Chief Academic Officer of the campus.
May I re-test on the COMPASS placement tests?
A student may obtain approval for a retest from a Counselor, math, or English faculty member only for sections on which his/her score is within three points of the next higher level of the course placement guidelines. Students may retest if they did not enroll in math, English or biology within three years of taking the placement test.
I successfully completed MTH 03. May I re-take the placement test to try to test out of MTH 04?
A student is generally required to take the entire sequence of prerequisite developmental courses before enrolling in a college level math course. In the case of mitigating circumstances, the student should consult with a developmental math instructor and the academic dean for alternative assessment measures.
My placement scores indicate that I must enroll in a developmental course before college level English or math.
I am paying for my courses. Why can’t I take what I want to?
Based on the college’s research, the COMPASS placement scores are a valid predictor for success in college level classes. VHCC’s policy is designed to assure that students are academically prepared for college level work and not likely to fail the courses they take.
I have heard that MTH 06, Geometry, can be waived. What is that policy?
If a course has Geometry as a prerequisite and the student’s COMPASS math score prescribes MTH 06, that course can be waived if the student can show on the high school transcript that he/she passed Geometry with a grade of “C” or better. Approval from a counselor or mathematics faculty member is required and the student is responsible for obtaining a copy of the transcript for evaluation. Once approved tudents must complete a Drop/Add form to enroll in the next level math course because the online system will continue to say “prerequisite not met.”
I made a “D” in a course, and I re-enrolled for that course this semester. Now I have to withdraw (or am failing). May I still use my credit with the “D” grade?
No. The VCCS policy states, “When students repeat a course, only the last grade earned is counted in the computation of the cumulative GPA and for satisfying curricular requirements.” This means if a student passed a class, then re-enrolls in order to get a higher grade—but fails or withdraws from the subsequent enrollment, the last grade is the only one that will count. The student will not be able to use the previous grade and course credits to meet graduation requirements.
I just checked my grades from last semester and I know one of the grades is incorrect. What do I do?
The student must appeal the grade directly to the appropriate instructor no later than ten calendar days after the first day of class of the next semester.
I took an AP high school course and passed the AP Exam with a score of 3, 4, or 5. How do I get college credit?
A copy of the AP score report should be taken to the Admissions & Records office. It will be sent to the appropriate counselor for evaluation and completion of the Advanced Placement Credit form. Credit for the equivalent VHCC course will then be entered on your transcript.
I have already enrolled in a course twice and am trying to enroll for it a third time. I get an error message. What do I do?
The student must obtain a Petition to Repeat Course form from the Student Success Center office. Previous enrollments in the course must be listed, and the course instructor must approve the enrollment. Afterwards, the student must meet with the Academic Division Dean and the Vice President of Instruction and Student Services, and convince them of intent/ability to pass the class on the third attempt. After obtaining these signatures, the student must take the form and the Drop/Add form to Admissions.
I love bowling (or aerobics). May I take bowling twice to meet my curricular PED requirements?
A student cannot use the same course number twice to meet a requirement. Many physical education courses have a two-number sequence, such as PED 135-136, Bowling I & II, so a student may enroll for the two separate courses. If the first part of the sequence is full, a student may enroll in the second part of the sequence before completing the first part.
What do course numbers 195 & 295, “Topics in …” mean?
An academic department may use the 195 and 295 sequence for special courses that provide content not covered in other courses. Students may use more than one 195 and 295 course to meet degree requirements if the title and content for each course is different.
I am transferring courses to VHCC from another college. Will the grades from that college be counted in my cumulative grade point average at VHCC?
No, the credits will be added to your transcript and degree plan, but the grades will not be transferred.
I have taken American Sign Language courses at VHCC. Will they transfer to another college? Will they count as a foreign language requirement at four-year colleges?
Some four-year colleges in our region will accept ASL 101, 102, 201, and 202 for credit and some will use it to meet foreign language requirements. Check with your division Counselor for the list of colleges that will accept these courses.
I had computer courses in high school and I am very good on the computer. May I test out of ITE 100 or 115?
A student should contact Stan Ferrell about ITE 100 and Debbie Rasnick about ITE 115. These two courses cover much more material than students realize, and once they find out what testing is involved, most choose to enroll in the classes.
Courses that I have taken are not shown under the appropriate requirement on my degree progress report. They are listed under “unused courses.” What should I do?
Check with the appropriate division counselor to see if an unused course does meet a degree requirement. Sometimes, the correct information is not entered into the online system. Other times, if the student and faculty advisor or counselor search the data base of the four-year transfer college and find that a particular course will be accepted there, it can be approved as a substitution at VHCC. In those cases, the “Course Substitution Request” form must be completed, signed by the faculty advisor and Division Dean, and submitted to the Admissions Office. Sometimes content of technical courses is considered equivalent for different course numbers. The lead faculty member for the technical program will determine if the content is equivalent, and the “Course Substitution Request” form must be completed for those substitutions.
What are Humanities Courses? Why can’t I use choir and guitar courses to meet a Humanities requirement?
SACS, our accrediting agency, defines a Humanities course as one which offers a broad historical and cultural perspective on a subject. Therefore, MUS 121 - 122, Music Appreciation I & II, courses are considered Humanities, but skill-based courses, such as choir, guitar, piano and percussion music classes are not. Art 201 – 202, History of Art I & II, are Humanities; drawing, painting, watercolor and sculpture courses are not. None of the Religion courses offered at VHCC are considered Humanities. Check your degree progress report, the footnotes for your curriculum in the catalog, and the list of General Education Core Curriculum for Transfer Reference in the catalog.
Why do I have to take general education courses that have nothing to do with my major?
Preparing students for employment in the “knowledge” economy and for participation as an educated citizen in a democracy requires mastery of general skills, such as communicating clearly and thinking critically, no matter what your field of study. The general education courses in the curriculum provide the collegiate experience that addresses the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and values characteristic of educated persons and helps builds connections among all bodies of knowledge. All degree, diploma and certificate programs are designed to encompass the common knowledge, skills, and attitudes required by each individual to be more effective as a worker, a consumer, a citizen and self-fulfilled person.
Can I get rid of my old “D” and “F” grades?
Yes, if a student has a period of five years between enrollment periods. Students who return to the college after a separation of five years or more, may petition for academic renewal. The student must earn at least a 2.5 GPA in the first twelve semester hours completed after reenrollment, prior to petitioning for academic renewal. The Academic Renewal Form is available in the Admissions Office. The request must be in writing and submitted to the Admissions Office. The policy can be found on page 30 in the 2008-2010 catalog.