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College of Science

Academic Policies

"Pass/Not-Pass" Option. In addition to the grades "A," "B," "C," etc., traditionally assigned to indicate the level of performance in classwork, an alternate grading system, the pass/not-pass option, has been established. This option gives you the opportunity to broaden your education with minimal concern for grades earned.

The option is open only to students who are classified as sophomores or upper-division students. This option is not available to students on probation.

A student who is enrolled in a course under this option has the same obligations as those who are enrolled in the course for credit with letter grade. When the instructor reports final grades in the course, he/she will report that any such student who would have earned a grade of "A," "B" or "C" has passed the course and any other such student has not passed.

You may elect to use the pass/not-pass option for no more than two courses per year and not more than 20 percent of the 124 credits required for graduation. These two restrictions do not apply to credits taken beyond the 124-credit requirement for graduation. For example, if you complete 130 credits, you may take the extra six credits pass/not-pass, if those six credits are not specific courses required by your major or by the college. 

The pass/not-pass option cannot be elected for a course that already appears on your academic record. If you are enrolled in a course under this option, you have the same obligations as those who will receive a letter grade. Courses taken under the pass/not-pass option are not used in computing grade indexes. See University Regulations for more information.

Multiple Course Enrollments. Occasionally, College of Science students may find it necessary to repeat coursework in order to make appropriate progress toward their degree objectives. Science students may attempt a course twice with the permission of their advisor. A third enrollment in a course, or an equivalent course, requires the permission of the dean or designee. An "attempt" is considered to be any time a course is recorded on the academic record, including withdrawals.

Declaration of Major. It is expected that students will refine their academic goals during the course of taking classes. Students must have declared a major in the College of Science before registering for classes in the college as a junior. Occasionally students will decide to pursue a different major outside of the College of Science but will have not yet met the entrance requirements for the new program. Students in the College of Science may register as an "undesignated" student for no more than four semesters, and only while classified as a freshman or sophomore.

Academic Credit Load. In accordance with University policy, science students may take up to 18 credits with the permission of their academic advisor. Enrollment in more than 18 credits requires permission of the dean or designee. Students with a graduation index of less than 3.0 are advised not to take more than 17 credits in any one semester. Students on academic probation may not attempt more than 15 credits without permission.

Equivalent, Preparatory and Transfer Courses. Current and relevant academic coursework is essential to providing a quality academic experience for science students. Credit that was earned more than 10 years ago may not be acceptable to meet degree requirements of the College of Science. A determination by the dean or designee about the acceptability of old coursework will be made upon request.

The College of Science utilizes lists maintained by the Office of the Registrar atwww.purdue.edu/registrar/Forms/Equiv_Non-Equiv.html to determine which courses might be used to meet degree requirements as alternatives to those listed in this document. In addition, certain courses have been determined by the faculty to be preparatory and will not be accepted toward graduation from the College of Science. That listing is available at the same Web location.

Transfer students are welcome, but students are expected to complete at least 50 percent of the credits in their major in residence, with the vast majority of upper-level courses taken at Purdue. Exceptions will be reviewed by the dean or designee.

Minors. Science students may pursue minors in areas outside of their major that have been approved by the various faculties of Purdue. Here is a list of currently approved minors for College of Science students.