Academic Policies and Procedures

Academic Calendar

The Academic Calendar for the current academic year, as well as past and future years, may be found on the Academic Calendar web page.

Registration and Course Information

Registration for Courses

Students who have no prior attendance at the University must apply for admission and be admitted before being eligible to register for courses. See the Admissions section of this catalog or the admissions website.

Detailed instructions regarding registration and course offerings are available on the Registrar web pages for registration information and course schedule information.

Students must complete course registration during the scheduled registration period or be subject to payment of a late registration fee, if allowed to register. Registration is not complete nor is any academic credit awarded until all course tuition and fees for the semester have been paid.

Adding, Dropping and Other Course Changes

Adding, Dropping and Other Course Changes – Summary Tables

Students who request to add, drop or change the grading option must have all registration holds cleared in order for the request to be honored. The following information does NOT apply to the School of Law. Law school students should see the School of Law website for information.

Autumn & Spring Semesters
Instructional Days Day 1-7 Day 8-15 Day 16-45 Day 46-Last Regular Class Day/Friday Before Finals Week After Last Regular Class Day
Add a CourseCyberBearCourse Add/Change Form with instructor signatureCourse Add/Change Form with advisor1 and instructor signatureCourse Add/Change Form with Advisor1 and instructor signatureOnly registration errors can be corrected use the course Add/Change Form with advisor1 and instructor signature
Change a SectionCyberBearCourse Add/Change form with both instructors' signaturesCourse Add/Change form with both instructors' signaturesCourse Add/Change form with both instructors' signaturesOnly registration errors can be corrected; use the Course Add/Change form with both instructors' signatures
Drop a CourseCyberBearCyberBearCourse Drop Form with advisor1 and instructor signature (W on transcript)Course Drop Form with adviosr1, instructor and Dean's signature (WP or WF on transcript)Not permitted
Change to/from AuditCyberBearCyberBearNot permittedNot permittedNot permitted
Change to/from CR/NCR grading, or change credits (for variable credit courses)CyberBearCyberBearCourse Add/Change Form with advisor1 and instructor signatureCourse Add/Change Form with advisor1 and instructor signatureNot permitted
1

Not required for Graduate & Post-Baccalaureate students

Winter Session
Instructional Days Day 1 Day 2-3 Day 4-8 Day 9-13 Day 14 & Beyond
Add a CourseCyberBearCourse Add/Change Form with instructor signatureCourse Add/Change Form with instructor signatureCourse Add/Change Form with instructor signatureOnly registration errors can be corrected; use the Course Add/Change Form with instructor signature
Change a SectionCyberBearCourse Add/Change Form with both instructors’ signaturesCourse Add/Change Form with both instructors’ signaturesCourse Add/Change Form with both instructors’ signaturesOnly registration errors can be corrected; use the Course Add/Change Form with both instructors’ signatures
Drop a CourseCyberBearCyberbearCourse Drop Form with instructor signature (W on transcript)Course Drop Form with instructor and Dean’s signature (WP or WF on transcript)Not permitted
Change to/from AuditCyberBearCyberbearNot permittedNot permittedNot permitted
Change to/from CR/NCR grading, or change credits (for variable credit courses)CyberBearCyberbearCourse Add/Change Form with instructor signatureCourse Add/Change Form with instructor signatureNot permitted
Summer Semester: 5-week Sessions
Instructional Days Day 1-2 Day 3-5 Day 6-14 Day 15-23 Day 24 & Beyond
Add a CourseCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureOnly registration errors can be corrected; use the Summer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signature
Change a SectionCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signaturesSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signaturesSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signaturesOnly registration errors can be corrected; use the Summer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signatures
Drop a CourseCyberBearCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signature (W on transcript)Summer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor and Dean’s signature (WP or WF on transcript)Not permitted
Change to/from AuditCyberBearCyberBearNot permittedNot permittedNot permitted
Change to/from CR/NCR grading, or change credits (for variable credit courses)CyberBearCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureNot permitted
Summer Semester: 10-week Session
Instructional Days Day 1-5 Day 6-10 Day 11-29 Day 30-47 Day 48 & Beyond
Add a CourseCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureOnly errors can be corrected; use the Summer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signature
Change a SectionCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signaturesSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signaturesSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signaturesOnly errors can be corrected; use the Summer Override & Add/Drop Form with both instructors’ signatures
Drop a CourseCyberBearCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signature (W on transcript)Summer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor and Dean’s signature (WP or WF on transcript)Not permitted
Change to/from AuditCyberBearCyberBearNot permittedNot permittedNot permitted
Change to/from CR/NCR grading, or change credits (for variable credit courses)CyberBearCyberBearSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureSummer Override & Add/Drop Form with instructor signatureNot permitted
Special Sessions

Special Session courses, offered during any term, will vary from the sessions listed above. For example, a course taught over a period of five weeks is considered a “special session” course if its start and end dates are different than the published regular term dates. Please check with the Registrar’s Office for specific dates related to changing registration in a special session course.

Adding, Dropping and Other Course Changes – Detailed Information

All guidelines and timelines that follow refer to the traditional autumn and spring semesters, which are generally 74-75 days in length. The timelines that apply to Summer Sessions and Winter Session are detailed in the tables above. Important Dates are listed on the Registrar's Office calendar web page. Please see the Business Services/Student Accounts website for information regarding how fees are impacted by dropping/adding courses, as well as the refund schedule for a complete withdrawal from the University of Montana.

Adding, Dropping or Other Course Changes – First Through Seventh (1 – 7) Instructional Day of the Semester

During this timeframe, students may use CyberBear to add courses, drop courses, change grading options, and/or change variable credits. Access to CyberBear for adding courses or changing sections ends at 5:00 p.m. Mountain Time on the seventh day of classes.

Adding, Dropping or Other Course Changes – Eighth Through Fifteenth (8 – 15) Instructional Day of the Semester

During this timeframe, with consent of the course instructor, students may add courses or change sections with a signed paper-Registration Override Form or an instructor-approved electronic override (via CyberBear). Fees are reassessed each night during this time period. Added courses and credits may result in additional fees.

Students may drop courses, change grading option (including audit), and/or change variable credits via CyberBear until 5:00 p.m. Mountain Time on the fifteenth day.

Adding, Dropping or Other Course Changes – Sixteenth Through Forty fifth (16 – 45) Instructional Day of the Semester

During this timeframe, students must complete a paper Course Drop Form or Course Add/Change Form as well as obtain the signature of both the course instructor and student’s advisor to

  1. drop/add a course and/or
  2. make changes of section, grading option, or credit.

The ability to change to or from audit is no longer available at this time. Completed forms must be returned to the GrizCentral Registration Counter (or the Registrar's Office at the Missoula College Campus) no later than close of business on the forty-fifth instructional day of a semester. A $10.00 processing fee is charged for each drop or add. Added courses and credits may result in additional fees. There are no refunds or reductions of fees for courses dropped after the 15th day (or equivalent), and a grade of W (withdrawn) is recorded for each dropped course.

Adding, Dropping, or Other Course Changes – Forty sixth Instructional Day of the Semester Through the Last Regular Class Day/Friday before Finals Week

During this timeframe, a Course Add/Change Form must be completed by the student and signed by the course instructor and the student’s advisor to add a course, change the grade option, or change variable credits. Changing to or from audit is not permitted during this time. Not all requests for adds, changing grade options, or changing variable credits are approved. Advisors have the right to indicate they do not recommend approval of the request. However, it is the course instructor’s decision to approve or deny the request to add/change  a course.

Completed forms must be returned to the GrizCentral Registration Counter (or the Registrar's Office at the Missoula College Campus) no later than close of business on the Last Day of Regular Classes. A $10.00 processing fee is charged for each add. Added courses and credits may result in additional fees.

During this timeframe, students may drop courses only by petition. Note that not all petitions are approved, and that documented justification is required. Some examples of documented circumstances that may merit approval are: accident or illness, family emergency, or other circumstances beyond the student's control. Instructors and advisors have the right to indicate they do not recommend the drop. However, it is the decision of the Dean of the student’s major to approve or deny the request to drop courses.

To petition to drop a course, a Course Drop Form must be completed, with the signature of the student’s advisor, the course instructor, and the Dean of the student’s major. Completed forms must be returned to the GrizCentral Registration Counter (or the Registrar's Office at the Missoula College Campus) no later than close of business on the Last Regular Class Day/Friday before Finals Week. A $10.00 processing fee is charged for each drop. There are no refunds or reductions of fees for courses dropped, and the instructor assigns a grade of WP (withdrawn/passing) if a student's course work has been passing or WF (withdrawn/failing) if failing. These grades do not affect grade averages but they are recorded on a student's transcript.

The opportunity to drop a course for the current term ends on the last day of instruction before scheduled final exams. Dropping a course taken in a previous term or altering grading option or audit status for such a course is not allowed. The only exceptions are for students who have received a grade of NF (never attended/fail).

Law School Students - See the School of Law section of this catalog for links to the School of Law website, which will list the add and drop deadlines for law courses.

Cancellation of Courses

The University reserves the right to cancel any course.

Common Course Numbering - Montana University System

All universities, 4-year and 2-year colleges that are part of the Montana University System are now required to use the same course numbering for undergraduate courses. With common course numbering, transfer students can be reassured that they will receive credit for undergraduate courses taken at another Montana institution, as long as the admitting institution offers that same course. This transparency will make it easier for students to continue their higher education at any state-supported campus.

Effective Autumn Semester 2009, all units of the Montana University System (MUS) began to offer classes using new subject abbreviations and new numbers that are common across all MUS units. Subject areas and numbers continue to be renumbered as of the publication of this catalog. Information regarding Common Course Numbering at the University of Montana is available at the Common Course Numbering web page.

Withdrawal from the University

Students who withdraw from the University (withdrawing from ALL classes) while a semester is in progress must complete withdrawal forms which are obtained from the Registration Counter in Griz Central (Lommasson Center) or the Registrar's Office at Missoula College. Drop/add forms cannot be used to withdraw from school and students are not allowed to drop all their courses on the Internet. International students must first contact the Foreign Student Advisor before withdrawing as visa status will be affected. Medical withdrawals are granted only for a student's significant health problems and must be documented by a healthcare provider.

See the Expenses section of this catalog for fee information relating to withdrawal from The University.

If a student receiving financial aid withdraws they may have to repay aid received in the current semester and it may affect eligibility in the future semesters. If a student stops attending classes without formally withdrawing they too may have to repay aid received in the current semester and may be ineligible for aid in future terms. Students who reside in a University residence hall or in family housing must notify the Residence Life Office or the Family Housing Office of the withdrawal.

Students who purchase health insurance with registration will receive a refund and lose coverage if withdrawn during the first fifteen instructional days unless a student is granted a medical withdrawal. Withdrawal after the fifteenth day will not result in a refund but coverage will continue through the remainder of the semester.

When withdrawal forms are completed in Griz Central or the Registrar's Office at Missoula College, before the last two weeks of the semester, grades of W (withdrawal) are assigned. Beginning two weeks from the end of the term, students may not withdraw from the University except for very unusual circumstances, as described below.

Retroactive Withdrawals

In exceptional cases, a student may appeal for a  retroactive withdrawal for a previous semester in attendance, all such appeals are reviewed by a committee. Forms and instructions are located at this link: http://www.umt.edu/registrar/PDF/RetroWithdrawalPetition.pdf

Hardship Withdrawals

In the case of extreme medical, family or other emergencies that are documented and have impacted a student's ability to attend and succeed in courses, a student may appeal for a hardship withdrawal from the university. Such appeals are reviewed by a committee and are considered on a case by case basis. To apply for a hardship petition contact Student Accounts at 406-243-2223.

Prerequisites and Co-requisties

"Prerequisite" indicates that the course(s) or requirement(s) described must have been met/satisfactorily completed (grade of C- or better, unless otherwise specified in the course description in the catalog) before the student may take the course that requires the listed pre-requisite. Failure to complete satisfactorily the pre-requisite will result in the student being dropped from the course which requires the pre-requisite. If credit for a pre-requisite was earned via the Advanced Placement (AP) Examination Program, the AP score is recorded on a student's academic record with a grade of "CR* (prior to Autumn Semester 2012), or a score of AP3, AP4, or AP5 (Autumn Semester 2012 and thereafter). "Co-requisite" indicates the course or courses must be taken concurrently (in the same academic term) with the course described. In some cases a co-requisite may be completed prior to the semester in which the course that requires the co-requisite is taken.

Course Numbering System

  • 001-099 Courses below college level. Credit not allowed toward a degree.
  • 100-199 Primarily for freshmen.
  • 200-299 Primarily for sophomores.
  • 300-399 Primarily for juniors.
  • 400-499 Primarily for seniors.
  • 500-699 Primarily for graduate students.
  • Senior (5th year) courses in Pharmacy are numbered 500 to 599.

Undergraduates in Graduate Courses

Post-baccalaureates and seniors holding a 3.0 (or greater) grade point average may, with consent of instructor, enroll in 500-level courses for undergraduate credit. Variance from these requirements cannot be petitioned.

Equivalent Courses

In certain cases, a course description indicates credit is not allowed for a particular course and for another course offered by a different department. These courses are very similar in content, although offered separately, and credit is not allowed toward a degree for both courses.

Full-Time Student Defined

Undergraduate Students

  •  Full Time:12 or more enrolled credits
  • 1/2 Time: 6 -11 enrolled credits
  • <1/2 Time: 5 or fewer enrolled credits
  • Not Enrolled: 0 enrolled credits (withdrawn/graduated, etc.)

Graduate Students

  • Full Time1: 9 or more enrolled credits
  • 1/2 Time: 6 – 8 enrolled credits
  • <1/2 Time: 5 or fewer enrolled credits.
  • Not enrolled: 0 enrolled credits (withdrawn/graduated, etc.)
1

One credit of PSYX 638 per semester is equivalent to full-time enrollment for students in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Program.
One credit of PSYX 588 (equivalent to PSYX 638) per semester is equivalent to full-time enrollment for students in the School Psychology PhD Program.

In most baccalaureate programs a student must earn at least 15 credits per semester to graduate in a four year period. One and two year programs usually require enrollment in between 15 and 19 credits per semester.

Maximum Credit Load

Generally, an undergraduate student should register for no more than 21 credits during a semester. The credit load would include physical education activity courses, and also remedial courses (those numbered below 100), credits from which do not count toward a certificate or degree.

Permission to enroll for more than the maximum credit load given above may be approved by the student's faculty advisor.

Final Examinations

Final examinations for the semester are scheduled in two-hour segments, one for each course. The segments should be considered as class meetings to be treated by the instructor as he or she thinks educationally appropriate. The time scheduled for final examinations is the only time period during which final examinations are to be given. If an instructor elects not to give a final examination during the designated week, under no circumstances are final examinations to be given during the week preceding the scheduled final examination days.

Students may seek relief from writing more than two examinations during the same day. Students who are scheduled for more than two examinations may contact the appropriate faculty to arrange an alternate testing time during the scheduled final examination period. If satisfactory arrangements cannot be made, the student should seek the assistance of his or her dean.

University Employee Registration

University employees who have applied and have been accepted for admission to the University may register with the approval of the employee's supervisor. Waivers of some fees are granted to some faculty and staff members who are at least three quarter time salaried employees on the date of registration. Additional information and the necessary forms are available in the Office of Human Resource Services in the Lommasson Center.

Grading and Academic Standing Information

Grading System

The University uses two types of grading: traditional letter grades and credit/ no credit grades. At the option of the instructors some courses are offered only on the traditional letter grade basis or only on the credit/no credit basis. Other courses are open to either type of grading, at the option of the student. Courses offered on the A -F basis only or CR/NCR only will be indicated in the Class Schedule or via CyberBear. Grades preceded by an R indicate remedial courses. Grades preceded by an E indicate academic forgiveness was granted.

The instructor has the first fifteen (15) class days of the semester to change the grading option for their course. If a change does occur from the original published grading option, the students in the class and the Registrar's office must be notified of the change not later than the fifteenth (15) class day.

Traditional Letter Grading (A-F)

Traditional Letter Grades represent an assessment of the overall quality of work performed in a given course. A-Excellent; B-Good; C-Satisfactory; D-Poor, F-Failure. When assigning traditional letter grades, instructors may, at their discretion, utilize the symbols + or -. Use of the + or - will be limited to A-, B+, B-, C+, C-, D+, and D-. Other grade symbols used are:

  • I-Incomplete;
  • N-work on the course may be continued in later semesters (when work is completed, the final grade assigned applies to all semesters of the course);
  • NF-no record of academic performance;
  • W-withdrawal from a course or course dropped after the fifteenth instructional day;
  • WP-course dropped after the forty-fifth instructional day with passing work;
  • WF-course dropped after the forty-fifth instructional day with failing work;
  • AUD-auditor registration. (AUD is recorded for all students who register in courses as auditors, intending to listen to the courses without earning credit or being graded. The same fees are assessed as when registering for credit. Any attendance or participation expectations are established by the instructor of the course. If attendance expectations are not met, the instructor may request a notation be placed on the student's academic record indicating attendance was not satisfactory.)

Remedial courses do not count in credits earned, nor in grade point averages, nor do they count toward graduation.

Credit/No Credit Grading (CR/NCR)

Student Option: To encourage students to venture into courses where they might otherwise hesitate because of uncertainty regarding their aptitude or preparation, they may enroll in some courses on a credit/no credit basis. Freshmen and sophomores are discouraged from taking more than one course a semester on a credit/no credit basis.

No more than 18 CR credits may be counted toward graduation requirements at the baccalaureate level. Courses taken to satisfy General Education Requirements must be taken for traditional letter grade. Courses required for the student's major or minor must be taken for traditional letter grade.

A grade of CR is assigned for work deserving credit (A through D-) and a grade of NCR is assigned for work of failing quality (F). CR and NCR grades do not affect grade point averages. The grades of CR and NCR are not defined in terms of their relationship to traditional grades for graduate course work.

Election of the credit/no credit option must be indicated at registration time or within the first 15 class days on CyberBear. Between the 16th day and the  last day of instruction before finals week, a student may request a change from credit/no credit enrollment to an enrollment under the A-F grade system, or the reverse, by means of a Course Add/Change Form; note that not all such requests are approved. See instructions above.

The University cautions students that many graduate and professional schools and some employers do not recognize non-traditional grades (i.e., those other than A through F) or may discriminate against students who use the credit/no credit option for many courses. Moreover, students are cautioned that some degree programs may have different requirements regarding CR/NCR credits, as stipulated in the catalog.

No Credit Grading in Composition (CN)

Students enrolled in WRIT 095 and WRIT 101 are graded by the traditional letter grades of A through F or are given NC for no credit. The NC grade is awarded when exceptional progress has occurred but the student needs to repeat the course. The NC grade does not affect grade point average.

Incomplete Grade Policy

It is assumed that students have the responsibility for completing the requirements of the courses in which they are enrolled within the time framework of the semester.

A grade of Incomplete (I) may be given when, in the opinion of the instructor, there is a reasonable probability that students can complete the course without retaking it.

The incomplete is not an option to be exercised at the discretion of a student. In all cases it is given at the discretion of the instructor within the following guidelines:

  1. A mark of incomplete may be assigned students when:
    • The student has been in attendance and doing passing work up to three weeks before the end of the semester, and
    • For reasons beyond the student's control and which are acceptable to the instructor, the student has been unable to complete the requirements of the course on time. Negligence and indifference are not acceptable reasons.
  2. The instructor sets the conditions for the completion of the course work, and communicates them to the departmental office.
  3. When a student has met the conditions for making up the incomplete, the instructor will assign a grade based upon an evaluation of the total work done by the student in the course.
  4. An incomplete which is not made up within one calendar year automatically will revert to the alternate grade which was assigned by the instructor at the time the incomplete was submitted.
  5. An incomplete remains on the permanent record and is accompanied by the final grade, for example, IA, IB, IC, etc.

Faculty Options for Grading Mode

  • A faculty member may elect to grade an entire class using the traditional letter grading option (A-F).
  • A faculty member may elect to grade an entire class using the credit/no credit option (CR/NCR). This method of grading is used in courses where more precise grading is inappropriate.
  • A faculty member may elect to grade an entire class with the open grade mode option which allows students to choose between traditional letter grading and credit/no credit grading. When a course is offered with the open grade mode option, then the default grading at the time of registration defaults to traditional letter grading. It is the student’s responsibility to make the change to credit/no credit grading if this is their preference.
  • Faculty members must choose the grade mode option for their courses at the time when courses are being proposed for a particular semester or within the first 15 instructional days of the semester.
  • Courses graded credit/no credit only and courses graded A-F only will be identified in the Class Schedule or via CyberBear.

Credit Definition

Credit is defined in terms of semester hours. In general, 1 semester hour credit is allowed for 1 hour of lecture each week of the semester, or an average of 2 hours of laboratory each week of the semester.

In determining semester hour recommendations, evaluators use the following guidelines:

  1. One semester credit hour for each 15 hours of classroom contact plus 30 hours of outside preparation or the equivalent; or
  2. One semester credit hour for each 30 hours of laboratory work plus necessary outside preparation or its equivalent, normally expected to be 15 hours; or
  3. One semester credit hour for not less than 45 hours of shop instruction (contact hours) or the equivalent.

Computation of Cumulative Grade Point Average

Quality points are assigned as follows:

  • 4 quality points for each credit of A;
  • 3.7 quality points for each credit of A-;
  • 3.3 quality points for each credit of B+;
  • 3 quality points for each credit of B;
  • 2.7 quality points for each credit of B-;
  • 2.3 quality points for each credit of C+;
  • 2 quality points for each credit of C;
  • 1.7 quality points for each credit of C-;
  • 1.3 quality points for each credit of D+;
  • 1 quality point for each credit of D; and
  • 0.7 quality points for each credit of D-.

The cumulative grade average is computed by dividing the total quality points earned by the total number of credits attempted, excluding courses assigned W, WF, WP, CR, NC, NCR, I, AUD, or N grades and courses numbered under 100 (grade is preceded by an R). For repeated courses, excluding courses assigned W. WF, WP, CR, NC, NCR, I, AUD, or N grades, only the last grade earned will count toward the cumulative grade average. Grades for courses transferred from other colleges and universities are not included in the calculation of the grade average for graduation.

Repeating a Course

Repeat Fee Structure:

  • 1st repeat - $25.75
  • 2nd repeat - $36.05
  • 3rd repeat - $51.50

The fee is assessed when a single course is repeated. The repeat fee is assessed for all students who repeat courses, not just those wanting to replace a grade for a course they took previously. Exemptions from the fee will be allowed for individuals with disabilities or financial hardship based upon recommendations from the Office of Disability Services or the Financial Aid Office.

Initial grades will be marked as repeated and remain on the transcript, but they will not be used to in the GPA calculation. Grades of AUD, I, N, NC, NCR, NP, NF, W, WP, or WF may not be used to replace grades. An F grade will be used to replace grades. If the last grade received is an F, no credit is given for previous passing grades. All courses repeated remain on the permanent record but only the last grade received is used to determine credits earned. Only the last grade received is used in calculating the grade point average.

If students receiving federal financial aid repeat a course previously passed they can only receive financial aid to do so a second time. On a third attempt the course will not be counted in the enrollment status for determining aid eligibility.

If enrollment in a course is closed, a student who is repeating or auditing the course may be required by the instructor to drop the course. This rule grants enrollment preference to those students attempting to register for the course for the first time for credit. It is the responsibility of the student who is not allowed to remain in the course to formally drop the course to avoid a failing grade for that course.

Repeating a course in the School of Law is governed by a different policy. See the School of Law section of this catalog.

Credit By Examination

Under certain circumstances, a currently registered student may receive credit by examination for a course in which he or she has not been regularly enrolled. The student must have a minimum cumulative grade average of 2.00 and an entering freshman must present a high school scholastic record equivalent to a 2.00 grade average to be eligible to earn credit by examination in any course.

Each school or department may determine those courses, if any, for which credit may be earned by examination. The dean of the school or the chair of the department must approve any arrangements prior to testing for such credit. On the successful completion of an examination, the department notifies the Registrar's Office. There are no fees for this type of credit by examination and grading may be credit/no credit or traditional letter grade.

Undergraduate Academic Performance

The cumulative grade average is calculated by dividing the total quality points earned by the total number of credits attempted, excluding courses assigned W, WF, WP, CR, NC, NCR, I, AUD, or N grades and courses numbered under 100 (grade is preceded by an R). Grades for courses transferred from other colleges and universities are not included in the calculation of the grade average for graduation. However, for determination of graduation honors/high honors, grades for all work transferred to this University, including failing grades are factored into the calculation.

Dean's List (Honor Roll)

To qualify for the Dean's List, students must be undergraduates, must earn a semester grade average of 3.50 or higher, and receive grades of A or B in at least 9 credits. No grades of C+, C, C-, D+, D, D-, F, NC or NCR are allowed.

4.0 President's List

To qualify for the 4.0 President's List Dean's List, students must be undergraduates, must earn a semester grade average of 4.0, and receive a grade of A in at least 9 credits. No grades of NC or NCR are allowed.

Undergraduate Academic Probation

An undergraduate student will be placed on academic probation if at the end of any semester his/her cumulative grade average drops below 2.00. The effect of the academic probation is to serve notice to the student that the quality of his/her work is below an acceptable level and that continuation of unsatisfactory work during their next semester of enrollment will result in academic suspension. Academic probation status is recorded on the student's academic transcript and semester grades. Students placed on probation should contact their academic advisor immediately to seek assistance and direction.

Undergraduate Academic Suspension

An undergraduate student will be placed on academic suspension at the end of any semester if the student was on academic probation during his/her prior semester of attendance and the student's cumulative grade average remains below 2.00. Exceptions are made if the student earns at least a 2.00 grade average for the current semester without raising the cumulative grade average to the required minimum. In such cases, students remain on academic probation. A student placed on academic suspension may not re enroll at the University unless the student has been reinstated. Reinstatement will require, at minimum, one full semester of non-enrollment at any campus of the Montana university system. Academic suspensions are noted on final grades and academic transcripts. Additional information can be found on the Office for Student Success Academic Standing web page

Reinstatement from Academic Suspension

As noted above, an undergraduate student will be academically suspended at the end of a semester if placed on academic probation during the previous semester of attendance and the student's cumulative graduate point average (CGPA) remains below the 2.00 CGPA required for good academic standing.

Students who have been suspended for academic reasons and seek reinstatement must receive the approval of the academic dean of the school or college in which they intend to enroll. [If seeking reinstatement in the Missoula College, contact the Retention and Advising Coordinator at MC.] Typically, retroactive grade changes, dropped courses or withdrawals do not reverse the academic suspension status that is recorded on the transcript, unless there was an error or grading mistake.

Academic reinstatement is not automatic.The student must provide the reasons for previous poor academic performance along with a carefully prepared plan for improvement that is completed with the help of an academic advisor. A student denied reinstatement may appeal the denial in writing to the President of the University within ten days of receiving the notice of denial. The decision to deny reinstatement normally will not be reversed unless there is evidence the decision was made arbitrarily.

If a suspended and reinstated student has not attended UM for more than two years, the student must also complete an application for readmission through the Registrar's Office. The readmission form re-activates the student's record and, along with the reinstatement form, allows the student to register for courses.

Appeal of Academic Suspension

Students may appeal a suspension in cases where there are compelling and documented circumstances. If the appeal is approved by the dean of the student's college, the student may return to the university without sitting out a semester. Appeals are considered where the student has otherwise demonstrated an ability to succeed at the university and the compelling circumstances that led to the poor performance have been resolved. An appeal of academic suspension will only be granted one time, on the approval of the appropriate dean. See the Appeal of Suspension Form, which details eligibility criteria and appropriate procedures. http://www.umt.edu/registrar/PDF/AppealofSuspension.pdf

Academic Forgiveness

  • A University of Montana – Missoula undergraduate, seeking their first undergraduate degree, who returns to the university after a minimum absence of three years and completes 30 credits of academic study with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 is eligible for Academic Forgiveness.
  • Academic Forgiveness allows a student who has met the requirements in statement #1 to select a prior semester or semesters he/she wishes to have excluded from calculation in the cumulative GPA. The semester(s) chosen must have occurred prior to his/her return to the university.
  • Receiving Academic Forgiveness for a semester or semesters results in all credits and grades earned in the semester to be excluded from the student’s GPA calculation. A student will not be allowed to select specific grades and credits to retain while excluding others earned within the same semester. The excluded courses and grades will remain on the transcript; however, they may not be used to fulfill any university requirements.
  • Only University of Montana – Missoula grades and credits will be excluded.
  • All excluded courses are still counted as attempted courses in determining if a student is meeting the Pace standard of the financial aid satisfactory academic progress (SAP) policy. If the terms being forgiven include courses a student previously passed the result could be that the student would now be out of compliance with the SAP policy and would have to do a financial aid appeal to have aid eligibility reinstated.
  • A student will be granted Academic Forgiveness only one time.
  • Students who receive Academic Forgiveness will be bound by the University Catalog in effect at the time of their return to The University or any subsequent catalog in accordance with University policy.
  • Students wishing to apply for Academic Forgiveness will contact the Registrar’s Office for the appropriate form. The Registrar’s Office will be responsible for verifying eligibility and notifying the student of approval.
  • Other options exist for students who have not left the university, such as course repeat, withdrawals, and other mechanisms listed under academic policies in this catalog.

Students wishing to apply for Academic Forgiveness may obtain the form at the GrizCentral registration counter, or on the Registrar’s Academic Forgiveness web page.

Transcript of Academic Record

A transcript of a student's academic record may be obtained from the Registrar's Office in the Lommasson Center, or the Registrar's Office at the Missoula College, upon the written and signed request of the student. In compliance with federal and state laws designed to protect student privacy, transcripts are not released without the student's authorizing signature.

Transcripts are usually available within two to five working days after receipt of the signed request. There is a charge for each official transcript. Payment must be received before transcripts are released. Transcripts and other services are withheld if the student owes a debt to the University. Special handling requests require extra fees.

Students may also order an academic transcript on-line for an additional fee through the National Student Clearinghouse service. Copies ordered via this service can be delivered electronically, hard copy or direct electronic data exchange. Additional information regarding ordering options and fees may be viewed via the Registrar's Website.

Any student who enrolled after summer semester 1991 may view his or her academic record in CyberBear

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Privacy and Release of Student Education Records (FERPA)

What is FERPA?

FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) was enacted in 1974. It is a set of regulations that applies to those institutions, such as the University of Montana, that receive funding from the Department of Education.

FERPA was written specifically for students and guarantees them the right to inspect and review their education records, the right to seek to amend education records, and the right to have some control over the disclosure of information from those education records.

Resources for Students

Notification Regarding Release of Student Directory Information

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. "Education records" are "those records, files documents, and other materials which

  1. contain information directly related to a student; and
  2. are maintained by an educational institution. (20 U.S.C. § 1232g(a)(4)(A); 34 CFR § 99.3).

FERPA applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.

Generally speaking, FERPA allows the University to disclose education records or personally identifiable information from education records in the following circumstances:

  • with the written consent of the student,
  • if the disclosure meets one of the statutory exemptions, or
  • if the disclosure is directory information and the student has not placed a hold on release of directory information.

The University defines the following information as public (directory) information:

  • Student's name
  • Email address
  • Telephone number
  • Dates of attendance
  • Degrees and awards received
  • Major and minor field(s) of studies
  • Class
  • Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
  • Most recent previous educational agency or institution attended by the student
  • Weight and height, if student is a member of an intercollegiate athletic team

FERPA allows the University to release a student's directory information to anyone unless the student informs the University Office of the Registrar that he or she does not wish directory information to be released.

NO to Release of Directory Information

If you do not wish to authorize the release of directory information and do not want your directory information to appear in the University Student Directory, you must inform the Office of the Registrar of this by completing a UM Confidentiality Request Form which can be obtained from the Registrar’s Office Website. You should allow at least three business days for processing.

You should be aware ...

You should be aware that restricting the release of your directory information has other consequences. For instance, a FERPA restriction makes it difficult or impossible for potential employers to verify your enrollment, or to verify the fact that you have earned a degree from the University. The University cannot notify your home town paper about awards and honors you receive (e.g., Dean's list). For this reason alone, many students choose to remove their FERPA restriction.

Change from NO to YES

At any time after restricting the release of your directory information, you may change your mind and choose to authorize the University to release directory information and for it to appear in the University Student Directory. You can grant such authorization at any time by going to the Registrar’s Office at 201 Lommasson with a valid photo identification.

Notification of Students' Rights Under FERPA

FERPA also affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include:

  1. The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access.
    To inspect and review his or her education records, a student should submit to the university official(s) or office(s) having custody of the particular record(s), a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the student believes are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student's privacy rights under FERPA. (This process cannot be used to challenge a grade.)
    A student who wishes to ask the University to amend a record should write the appropriate University dean or director responsible for custody of the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.
    If the University decides not to amend the record as requested, the University will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student's right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  3. The right to provide written consent before the University discloses personally identifiable information from the student's education records, except that the University will disclose the following information without a student’s consent:
  4. Disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including, but not limited to University Police Department personnel, and Curry Health staff); a contractor, consultant, or other outside service provider retained to provide various institutional services and functions under contract or by statute instead of using University employees or officials (including, but not limited to an attorney, auditor, collection agent, information systems specialist, teaching affiliate, and clinical mentor); a person serving on the Board of Regents, staff in the Office of the Commission of Higher Education, the Institutional Review Board, and any other University board, committee or council; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.

A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the University.

  1. Compliance with a lawfully issued subpoena or judicial order.
  2. Requests in connection with a student’s application for financial aid.
  3. Information submitted to accrediting organizations.
  4. To other agencies or institutions that have requested the records and in which the student seeks or intends to enroll or is already enrolled so long as the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer.
  5. Requests by federal and state authorities and authorized third parties designated by federal and state authorities to evaluate a federal or state supported education program; to researchers performing certain types of studies; in connection with statewide longitudinal data systems studies and tracking.
  6. In the case of emergencies, the University may release information to appropriate persons in connection with an emergency, if the knowledge of such information is necessary to protect the health or safety of a student or other persons.
  7. To the extent otherwise permitted by law, the results of a disciplinary proceeding or investigation conducted by the University to an alleged victim of a crime.
  8. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-5901

Additional Resources

For more information on FERPA, please see the following links:

  1. Family Policy Compliance Office
  2. FERPA 20 USC 1232(g)
  3. 34 CFR Part 99
  4. Montana Code Annotated

Student Rights

Public Safety Report and Alcohol and Drug Guidelines

The health and safety of students, faculty, staff, and visitors are of paramount concern to The University of Montana. Each year the University publishes an annual report outlining on-campus security and safety information and crime statistics. The report provides important information for security awareness and crime prevention programs, emergency procedures and reporting crimes, plus law enforcement and safety services on campus.

Additionally, the booklet contains the University's policy on sexual assault and information about support services for victims of sexual assault. The booklet also includes information about the University's drug and alcohol policy, programs and support services for substance abuse, and risk management guidelines for University-related events.

The booklet is available by writing or calling the Office of Public Safety (406) 342-6131 or the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs (406) 243-5225, The University of Montana, Missoula, Missoula, MT 59812. The information can also be accessed on the University of Montana Student Affairs website and the University of Montana Public Safety website.

Student Complaint Procedures

Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between The University of Montana University Faculty Association and The Montana University System, there is a formal procedure for students who have a complaint against a faculty member or an administrator. Information about this procedure is available at the Vice President for Student Affairs website. The ASUM Student Resolution Officer is available to answer questions about procedures and to assist with the process. Time restrictions are important, so students should review procedures immediately if they feel they may have complaints. The Resolution Officer receives voice mail at 243-5431 or email at asum.resolutionoff@mso.umt.edu

Notice to Students with Disabilities

Students with disabilities may obtain assistance with the registration process and the relocation of classes (if needed) through Disability Services in Lommasson Center 154 (406) 243 2243 VOICE/TDD.

Student Conduct Code

The Student Conduct Code, embodying the ideals of academic honesty, integrity, human rights and responsible citizenship, governs all student conduct at The University of Montana-Missoula. Student enrollment presupposes a commitment to the principles and policies embodied in this Code. The Student Conduct Code sets forth University jurisdiction, student rights, standards of academic and general student conduct, disciplinary sanctions for breach of the standards of student conduct and procedures to be followed in adjudicating charges of both academic and general misconduct.

The Vice President for Student Affairs is responsible for procedural administration of the Student Conduct Code for all general conduct. The Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs is responsible for all academic conduct. Copies of the Student Conduct Code can be obtained from the offices of the Vice President for Student Affairs, the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Residence Life, and Associated Students of University of Montana-Missoula (ASUM). The Student Conduct Code also can be accessed on the Vice President for Student Affairs Conduct Code web page.

Plagiarism Warning

Plagiarism is the representing of another's work as one's own. It is a particularly intolerable offense in the academic community and is strictly forbidden. Students who plagiarize may fail the course and may be remanded to Academic Court for possible suspension or expulsion. (See Student Conduct Code that follows in this section of the catalog.)

Students must always be very careful to acknowledge any kind of borrowing that is included in their work. This means not only borrowed wording but also ideas. Acknowledgment of whatever is not one's own original work is the proper and honest use of sources. Failure to acknowledge whatever is not one's own original work is plagiarism.

Class Attendance/Absence Policy

Students who are registered for a course but do not attend the first two class meetings may be required by the instructor to drop the course. This rule allows for early identification of class vacancies to permit other students to add classes. Students not allowed to remain must complete a drop form or drop the course through CyberBear to avoid receiving a failing grade. Students who know they will be absent should contact the instructor in advance.

Students are expected to attend all class meetings and complete all assignments for courses in which they are enrolled. Instructors may excuse brief and occasional absences for reasons of illness, injury, family emergency, religious observance or participation in a University sponsored activity. (University sponsored activities include for example, field trips, ASUM service, music or drama performances, and intercollegiate athletics.) Instructors shall excuse absences for reasons of military service or mandatory public service.

Instructors may establish absence policies to conform to the educational goals and requirements of their courses. Such policies will ordinarily be set out in the course syllabus. Customarily, course syllabi will describe the procedures for giving timely notice of absences, explain how work missed because of an excused absence may be made up, and stipulate any penalty to be assessed for absences.

The UM Faculty Senate encourages the faculty to accommodate students incurring an excused absence by allowing them to make up missed work when this can be done in a manner consistent with the educational goals of their courses. Students expecting to incur excused absences should consult with their instructors early in the term to be sure that they understand the absence policies for each of their courses.

Major and Minor Requirement Information

Declaring a Major and Changing a Major

Students indicate on the application for admission the major or majors in which they are interested. Students undecided as to a field of interest may elect to be Undeclared while making program and career decisions. Students must declare a major in a degree granting program prior to completion of 45 credits or after three semesters, whichever occurs first.

Students must complete a major in order to earn a degree or certificate.

Students may change their majors or minors by obtaining the proper approval on a change of major or minor form available from the Registration Counter in Griz Central in the Lommasson Center. Because of enrollment limitations, students must request a change to a program in the Missoula College by completing an application for admission and submitting it to the College. Students whose initial admission was to the Missoula College may change to a major outside the College by submitting an application for admission to Enrollment Services-Admissions & New Student Services in the Lommasson Center.

Credits Required for a Major

Students in a bachelor degree program must complete a minimum of 30 credits in their major. Most majors require more.

Students may elect to earn a single degree with more than one major. Students may complete a double major (two majors) or any number of majors. All requirements for the majors must be completed even though students will receive a single degree such as a Bachelor of Arts with majors in Psychology and Sociology. It is only necessary to complete the total credit requirement for a single bachelor degree.

Courses completed to satisfy the requirements of a major also may be applied toward the General Education Requirement if they appear on the list of approved courses at the time they are taken.

Students in programs in the Missoula College complete requirements as listed in the Missoula College section of this catalog.

Credit Limitations in a Major

A maximum of 60 credits in the student's major may be counted toward the baccalaureate degree, except some options in Health and Human Performance and Education, majors in Computer Science, and majors in the Schools of Business Administration, College of Visual and Performing Arts, Journalism, Law, The College of Health Professions and Biomedical Sciences and the College of Forestry and Conservation are allowed more. Students with combined majors, as opposed to two majors, are allowed to apply 75 credits in the major.

Grade Requirement

Courses taken to satisfy the requirements of the major must be completed with a grade of C- or better.

A minimum grade average of 2.00 in all work attempted in the major at the University of Montana-Missoula is required for graduation.

Major Concentration

Groups of courses have been identified which lead to a specialization within one major or between two or more majors. These specializations are called concentrations. The names of approved concentrations will be recorded on the permanent records of those students who have satisfactorily completed the requirements as given in the catalog governing their graduation. A student desiring a particular concentration must satisfy the requirements of the major offering it. If one concentration is offered within two or more majors, the student must satisfy the requirements of only one.

Only courses listed within the supporting major count toward the 60 credit limitation in the major. Courses in other fields do not count toward the maximum of 60 credits in the major even though they may be required or elected for the concentration.

If one major has two or more concentrations, a student may satisfy the requirements for more than one concentration so long as the maximum credit limitations are observed.

Minor Requirements

Baccalaureate students may elect to complete one or more minors in fields outside their majors. Minors may be in fields unrelated to students' majors or they may be complementary or supportive of majors. A student may not take a minor in the same field of study as his or her major.

A student will not be required to satisfy the requirements of a minor in order to graduate unless that minor is required by the student's major department or school.

Courses completed to satisfy the requirements of a minor also may be applied toward the General Education Requirement if they appear on the list of approved courses at the time they are taken.

Credits Required for a Minor

To complete a minor, students must earn at least 18 credits in an approved minor listed in this catalog and complete a baccalaureate degree.

Students possessing a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university may earn a minor if they have been accepted by the University as an undergraduate degree student. In addition to meeting minor requirements, students must earn from the University of Montana-Missoula a minimum of 9 credits in the minor field and 15 credits overall.

Grade Requirement

Courses taken to satisfy the requirements of the major and the minor must be completed with a grade of C- or better. Some majors require a C or higher grade for some of the required courses. Specific information regarding the major requirements can be found in the majors individual section of the catalog.   

A minimum grade average of 2.00 in all work attempted in the minor at the University of Montana-Missoula is required for graduation with the minor.

Teaching Minors

Teaching minors are separate entities from degree minors as described in this section. Teaching minors are identified and requirements listed in the College of Education section of this catalog.