Policies & Procedures

Credit for Coursework Prior to WashU

You may be able to receive college credit based on AP, IB, British A-Level scores, or college coursework earned before your enrollment at Washington University as a first-year student. If your work meets the requirements it can be applied toward a degree.  A maximum of 15 units of credit may be counted toward any undergraduate degree.  These units will count toward graduation, but will not meet general curriculum requirements.  

AP, IB, & A-level Exam Credit

To receive credit for AP test scores, we must receive your scores directly from the College Board. Details on how to send your scores can be found on the College Board site. Washington University’s College Code is 6929.

To receive credit for IB or British A-Level tests, please submit your test scores to: Freshman Coordinator, Washington University in St. Louis, One Brookings Drive, Campus Box 1117, Saint Louis, MO 63130-4899

The AP, IB, and A-Level policies are listed below.  No department at Washington University offers absolute credit for AP scores lower than 4 without further study. 

Advanced Placement Procedures

International Baccalaureate Procedures

British A-Level Policy

Foreign Language & Calculus Back Credit

Students who place into and satisfactorily complete higher-level courses at Washington University may be eligible to earn units of Back Credit for preceding courses per the department's review and approval.  Credit is not awarded twice if a student has already earned the Back Credit units from transfer credit or AP scores. 

Back-Credit Policy

College Courses Prior to WashU (Students from Class of 2020 and Later)

The academic policy of the College of Arts & Sciences permits the transfer of credit earned at other colleges and universities while in high school if: 

  1. The course is one for which credit would normally be awarded. 
  2. The course was taken at a fully accredited college or university. 
  3. The course was not part of a high school/college dual credit program and the course was: 
    • taught on the campus of a college or university 
    • enrolled primarily by duly matriculated college students--i.e. high school graduates 
    • taught by a college faculty member 
  4. The course was taken after the sophomore year of high school. 
  5. This course did not count toward the high school graduation requirement. 

All conditions must be satisfied in order for a course to qualify for credit. If any one condition is not satisfied, the College of Arts & Sciences will not award credit. 

The maximum total of transferable credits from AP and/or college courses is 15. 

Required Documentation 

The following documents must be received prior to credit evaluation. 

  1. Completed Request for Washington University Credit 
    Complete the Part I of the form and ask the Registrar at the school where you took the courses to complete Part II. [Download
  2. Course Description 
    Provide course description or course syllabus for each course. 
  3. Transcript 
    Submit an official transcript bearing the Registrar's seal or its equivalent to Washington University. 

Please send all documentation listed above to: 

First-Year Transcript Evaluation 
College of Arts & Sciences 
Washington University, Box 1117 
One Brookings Drive 
St. Louis, MO 63130

College Courses Prior to WashU (Students from Class of 2019 and Earlier)

The academic policy of the College of Arts & Sciences permits the transfer of credit earned at other colleges and universities while in high school if: 

  1. The course is one for which credit would normally be awarded. 
  2. The course was taken at a fully accredited college or university. 
  3. The course was not part of a high school/college dual credit program and the course was: 
    • a bona fide college course taught on the campus of a college or university 
    • enrolled primarily by duly matriculated college students--i.e. high school graduates 
    • taught by a regular college faculty member 
  4. The course was taken after the junior year of high school. 
  5. This course is not on the high school transcript and did not count toward the high school diploma. 

All conditions must be satisfied in order for a course to qualify for credit. If any one condition is not satisfied, the College of Arts & Sciences will not award credit. 

The maximum total of transferable credits from AP and/or college courses is 15. 

Required Documentation 

Evaluation of credit will not be done unless all three documents are received. 

  1. Completed Application Form for Washington University Credit 
    Complete the Part I of the  PDF form and ask the Registrar at the school where you took the courses to complete Part II. [Download
  2. Course Description 
    Attach to the completed application a course description or course syllabus for each course to aid the transfer evaluation. 
  3. Transcript 
    Have an official transcript bearing the Registrar's seal or its equivalent sent directly to Washington University. 

To petition for credit for college work completed prior to high school graduation, please send all documentation listed above to: 
First-Year Transcript Evaluation 
College of Arts & Sciences 
Washington University, Box 1117 
One Brookings Drive 
St. Louis, MO 63130 

 

Credit for Non-WashU Courses

Non- WashU Course Credit

Arts & Sciences students wishing to earn credit for coursework taken at another institution need approval from the College Office before they are eligible to receive credit. 

The following exceptions require direct contact with the Office of Overseas Programs (overseas@wustl.edu): 

  • Coursework being taken through a WUSTL study abroad program. 
  • Coursework through another US organization's study abroad program. 
  • International students who plan to take summer coursework in a country that is not your country of citizenship or parents’ residence. 

These policies apply to non-WUSTL courses: 

  • Online or other distance learning courses will not be granted transfer credit. 
  • You must take the course for a letter grade and earn a grade of C or better to be eligible for transfer credit. 
  • Grades earned at other institutions will not be included in your WUSTL gpa. 
  • Non-WUSTL course work may not be used to satisfy Arts & Sciences distribution requirements. 
  • Upon receipt of an official transcript from the non-WUSTL school, approved credit will be awarded. 

Basic Instructions: 

  1. Download the PDF form
  2. Attach a course description for each course you are planning to take. 
  3. For each course, indicate if the class is to count for general credit or for a major/minor. 
  4. If the course is in Chemistry or Physics please use these links for additional important information. 
  5. If credit is for a major/minor, secure approval from your major advisor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the department. 
  6. Submit the completed form with departmental approval as needed to the College of Arts & Sciences, 104 Cupples II. 
  7. After successfully completing your course(s), please arrange to have your official transcript sent to: Student Records Assistant, College of Arts & Sciences, Campus Box 1117, Washington University in St. Louis, One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130-4899 

Additional Instructions for International Students who are: 

  • An undergraduate student studying at WUSTL on a student visa. 
  • Planning to take summer coursework at a recognized institution of higher education in your country of citizenship or country of parents’ residence. 

Additional Steps 

  1. Submit the Approval for Non-WUSTL Course Credit form to the College Office and make sure you share translated copies, as needed, if any documents are written in another language. 
  2. After submitting your form to the College Office, you must register your plans on the Office of Overseas Programs' Global Opportunities website. The deadline to register is May 15
    Register Now 
  3. Once you receive approval from the College Office for your coursework, you must upload a copy of the completed and approved form to the Global Opportunities website. 
    Return to the Site 
  4. Students who do not complete both the course approval and registry process by the deadline will not be eligible for credit. 
  5. Make sure an official copy of your transcript is sent to the College of Arts & Sciences (do NOT send transcript to Admissions, your academic advisor, or the Registrar's Office). You may hand deliver the transcript to the College Office in 104 Cupples II, in a sealed envelope from the institution. If necessary, please provide a certified translation of the transcript.

Internship Credit

How to get Internship Credit

You can gain academic credit (pass/fail) for an internship if the following criteria are met: 

  • The internship must be unpaid. 
  • You must have a faculty sponsor and a site supervisor. 
  • You must complete a Learning Agreement with the faculty sponsor and site supervisor no later than two weeks after the first day of the internship. 
  • You must work the following number of hours per credit: 
    • One credit = 45+ hours over six weeks or more 
    • Two credits = 90+ hours over eight weeks or more 
    • Three credits = 135+ hours over eight weeks or more 

To receive credit, follow these steps: 

  • Complete the Learning Agreement.
  • Register for the course number as advised by your faculty sponsor. 
  • For most summer internships, you may register for the credit the following fall semester. 
  • For all internships, you must register by the appropriate semester add/drop date. 
  • For General Studies credit, write one double‐spaced reflection paper and turn it in via e‐mail to Dean Ganapathy

Please note the following limits on internship credit: 

  • You can earn up to three credits for an internship during a semester or summer. 
  • You can count up to six credits for internships toward your total credits for graduation. 

Questions? Contact Dean Ganapathy at 314‐935‐4936 or mdganapa@wustl.edu 

 

Take time away from WashU

From time to time students want to take time away from their studies at Washington University. 

Request a Medical Leave of Absence

During your time at Washington University in St. Louis, you may experience life situations, medical conditions, or psychological conditions that significantly impair your ability to function successfully or safely as a student. In these instances, time away from the university for treatment and recovery can often restore your functioning to a level that will enable you to participate fully in academic coursework and the university community.

Learn more

Take Time Away for Study Abroad

All Art & Sciences students who wish to take a leave from Washington University to study abroad with a non-WU program need to complete a leave of absence request through Overseas Programs

Request a Leave of Absence

From time to time students want to take time away from their studies at Washington University. When you take a Leave of Absence from the University you have the option to return at a later date.

Complete the Request Form

Request a Withdrawal from WashU

If you are an undergraduate who has transferred to another college or university, please complete the request to withdraw from Washington University

Return from a Leave of Absence

If you have been on a leave of absence, you need to complete paperwork to return to the University.

Reinstatement from a Medical Leave of Absence

Reinstatement from an approved Medical Leave of Absence must be requested through Student Health & Counseling ServiceIf you are applying to return for a fall semester, applications must be received between June 1-July 1.  For a spring semester return, applications must be received between November 1-December 1.

Reinstatement from a Leave of Absence

Please complete and submit the Reinstatement Form at least six weeks prior to the start of the semester.  

Transfer into or out of ArtSci

Transferring Into Arts & Sciences

In order to transfer to the College of Arts & Sciences from the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts, Olin Business School, or the School of Engineering & Applied Science, students must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 or higher and be in good academic standing. Students not meeting these criteria will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Each student's record should also support the conclusion that they will be able to complete an Arts & Sciences major as well as Arts & Sciences degree requirements within a typical time frame. All transfers must be requested by the last day of final exams of the semester before the effective semester. 

To request a transfer, log in to WebSTAC and select "Academics/Change WU School." This process requires meeting with and receiving approval from the transfer deans of Arts & Sciences and the incoming school. Contact information for the deans is provided during the request process at WebSTAC.

Transferring Out of Arts & Sciences

In order to transfer to the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts, Olin Business School, or the School of Engineering & Applied Science, students in the College of Arts & Sciences should meet with a dean or academic advisor in the school to which they are considering a transfer to review all academic requirements. Students are encouraged to consult their Arts & Sciences four-year advisor for additional support. All transfers must be requested by the last day of final exams of the semester before the effective semester. 

To request a transfer, log in to WebSTAC and select "Academics/Change WU School." This process requires meeting with and receiving approval from the transfer deans of Arts & Sciences and the incoming school. Contact information for the deans is provided during the request process at WebSTAC.

Policy Exceptions

Policy Exception Request

At times students may wish to request an exception to certain College of Arts & Sciences policies.

Complete the Policy Exception Form for this request.

Academic Honors

Dean's List

At the end of each semester, in recognition of exceptional scholarship, the College Office compiles a list of those students whose work has been particularly worthy of commendation. Students will be cited on the Dean’s List if they complete a minimum of 14 units of graded work while achieving a grade point average of 3.6 for the semester. No incomplete or "N" grades may be outstanding as part of the semester record. All work must be completed and grades posted by the first day of the following semester in order to be considered for Dean’s List. For Spring semester courses, all work must be completed by the beginning of Summer Session II (typically mid-June).

College Honors

Upon assessment by the College Office, the A.B. with College Honors will be awarded to students who achieve college-wide academic excellence as measured by a cumulative grade point average of 3.6 or better throughout eight semesters, but who do not receive Latin Honors.

Latin Honors

Latin Honors are determined on the basis of a student’s performance throughout eight semesters in the college. To be eligible for such honors, the student must have maintained a 3.65 grade point average through the sixth semester and must be accepted for candidacy by the relevant department or area committee. Latin Honors candidates must enroll in such courses as their department or interdisciplinary committee may require, satisfactorily complete a significant project appropriate to the nature of the discipline, and pass such written and/or oral examinations as the department or area committee may set. 
 
Upon certification by the department that the Honors program has been satisfactorily completed, the student may be awarded the A.B. cum laude, magna cum laude, or summa cum laude according to the following proportions: the top 15 percent in overall grade point average of Latin honors candidates who complete the necessary requirements of their major departments will graduate summa cum laude; the next 35 percent magna cum laude; the next 50 percent cum laude. 
 
To be eligible for Latin Honors, transfer students must have earned a minimum of 48 letter-graded Washington University units prior to the final semester. Grades earned at other institutions do not figure in the calculation of minimum averages required for eligibility for Latin Honors.

Policy FAQs

What is an incomplete grade and how long will I have it?

By action of the Faculty of the College of Arts & Sciences and the ArtSci Council, the college limits the number of accrued grades of Incomplete (I). The policy is intended to protect the student from building an overwhelming burden of unfulfilled course work. The regulation reads as follows: “Students who accrue three or more Incompletes will not be permitted to enroll for any subsequent semester until the number is reduced to two or fewer.” Should students have too many Incompletes, they will be declared ineligible for subsequent semesters until they have complied with the regulation. Compliance is normally achieved by the posting of grades online, but it also may be achieved by a note from the professor(s) to the College Office confirming that the student has turned in all requisite assignments for the relevant class(es). 

If a student experiences medical or personal problems that make satisfactory completion of course work difficult or unlikely, s/he may request a grade of Incomplete (I) from one or more instructors. In such a situation, the student should take the following steps: 

  1. Meet with the instructor before the final examination or due date for the final paper to discuss the request. 
  2. If the instructor consents, agree on the work remaining to complete the course and on a date when it will be submitted. 

If these steps are not followed, the instructor is under no obligation to award a grade of I. Failure to submit completed work by the last day of classes of the next full semester will result in the I grade being changed automatically to a grade of F.  For spring semester courses, this will be the last day of summer classes, typically mid-August.

How many majors/minors can I have?

A student may receive no more than a total of two majors and one minor or one major and two minors.

Can I repeat a course to get a better grade?

Students whose performance in a course has not met their expectations are permitted to retake the course, receive a second grade, and have the symbol R, denoting the retake, placed next to the grade for the first enrollment. The course should be retaken for the same grade option as that for which the course was originally taken. All registrations will show on the transcript; however, only the grade and units of the final enrollment will be used to calculate the GPA. 

Please note: This procedure is not pedagogically sound and should be avoided in all but serious cases, such as a grade of D in a course required for the major. 

If the first enrollment was for a letter grade, the second and subsequent enrollments must be for a letter grade in order for the retake policy to be invoked. Except in the case of a retake of an unsuccessful audit, the retake policy will not be invoked if the grade option for any of the enrollments is audit. 

No student may use the retake option to replace a failing course grade received as a sanction for violation of the Academic Integrity Policy. 

To retake a College of Arts & Sciences course in University College, either during the summer or during the regular academic year, requires the department to certify in advance the course’s equivalence to the College of Arts & Sciences course.

Can I take courses through University College?

Students in the College may enroll in course work offered by University College as long as they do not exceed one course a semester and a maximum total of 24 units. University College courses are subject to the degree requirement that stipulates only 30 units from any of the other schools of the university may be applied to the Bachelor of Arts degree. University College courses do not fulfill distribution requirements and can only count for a major or minor with approval from the relevant department. Students in the College of Arts & Sciences do not receive credit for online courses offered by University College.

Can I register for graduate level (500 and above) courses?

Yes, undergraduates are allowed to register for graduate level courses. However, these courses are designed for students pursuing graduate degrees.   If you are interested in a specific course, be sure to contact the instructor first to ensure your enrollment will be approved.

How many credits can I take pass/fail at WU?

To encourage students to enroll in courses they might not otherwise take, the faculty has established the credit/no credit option under which a student may register in courses and receive a grade of credit (CR) or no credit (NCR). In any semester, a full-time student may enroll in one course under the credit/no credit option. A maximum of 24 units earned under this option may be applied toward the A.B. degree. Students must designate which course is to be taken under the credit/no credit option each semester at the time of registration. No change into or out of the option may be made after the dates designated in the calendar of the College of Arts & Sciences, published each semester. 

No more than 12 of the 24 units allowed for the credit/no credit option may be applied to area distribution requirements. 

It is the student's responsibility to discuss with the faculty member what constitutes a successful pass/credit in a particular course. Although the general pass mark is a C–, instructors have the discretion to set the pass mark higher in their individual courses. 

The first-year writing course, the writing-intensive course, the applied numeracy course, and courses in the major and minor are excluded from the credit/no credit option. Pre-professional and prospective graduate students should also consider seriously the strong probability that professional schools may seek more definite grades than CR in courses that are required or strongly recommended for admission to professional or graduate study. 

A few courses particularly designated by departments may require enrollment on a credit/no credit basis. When so required, students are permitted to elect an additional course to be taken credit/no credit but should consider carefully the consequences of that choice.

What happens if I miss a class?

Successful education at the college level depends to a large extent on regular attendance at classes and laboratories. The College of Arts & Sciences has no fixed rules for “cuts” or “excused absences” but leaves to the judgment of each department or instructor the number of absences of any kind a student may have and still expect to pass a course. The faculty expects each instructor to give reasonable consideration to unavoidable absences and to the feasibility of making up missed work. The student is expected to explain to instructors the reasons for such absences and to discuss the possibility of completing missed assignments.

Are there other Arts & Sciences policies I should know about?

For a list of all ArtSci policies, visit the Bulletin.

Important University Policies for Students

Academic Integrity

Effective learning, teaching and research all depend upon the ability of members of the academic community to trust one another and to trust the integrity of work that is submitted for academic credit or conducted in the wider arena of scholarly research. For full information, visit the Academic Integrity Policy page.

Student Grievance Policy

Washington University is committed to assuring that appropriate options are available to students with grievances against faculty members, including grievances involving discrimination and/or discriminatory harassment.  For full information, visit the Grievance Policy and Procedures page.

Student Records Privacy Policy (FERPA)

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal law that protects student information. For full information, visit the Office of the University Registrar.

 

Support for Veterans & Military

The university is committed to ensuring the success of all military personnel and veterans in their pursuit of attitudes, skills and habits of lifelong learning and leadership. For full information about support for military personnel and veterans, view the Veterans and Military page.