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Academic Probation Policy

Satisfactory Educational Progress is checked at the end of every semester. Academic Advising and/or Practice will issue letters informing students who are not in good standing. Educational sanctions and registration limits can be imposed on students not making sufficient educational progress. A permanent note of probation status is recorded in the student's Academic Advising file. Students who are on probation are not permitted to submit for Portfolio Reviews (with the exception of the Foundation Portfolio Review), enter Thesis Seminar/Studio or Degree Project, or advance to graduation.

Academic Probation for Online M.Arch students
Academic Probation for MDS students

Contract for Educational Progress

A student on academic probation must sign a probation contract, also known as a Contract for Educational Progress (CEP). This is a formal document that lays out a plan to help the student improve academic performance. It is completed by an Academic Advisor in consultation with the student and lists a series of criteria/terms that the student must meet within the given semester. Students unable to raise their GPAs enough to regain good academic standing after two probation semesters must attend an academic hearing with the Educational Review Board to determine whether they will be allowed to continue at the BAC.

Terms of Probation

All students are permitted two semesters on probation to regain good academic standing. After two probationary semesters, if a student has not regained good academic standing, the student will face an academic hearing to determine whether s/he will be allowed to continue her/his studies at the BAC.

Probation contracts can violated in two categories:

Technical Violations

  • Grades—Student is unable to raise his/her required GPA(s) to his/her program minimum during the given probationary semester.
  • Withdrawals/Failures—Students must successfully complete each course at a satisfactory rate. If a student withdraws and/or fails the same course two or more times, s/he will be placed on academic probation. If a student is on probation due to repeatedly withdrawing from or failing a course, and that course is not successfully completed during the probationary semester, they have violated the terms of the CEP.

Procedural Violation

  • Student fails to meet the additional terms specified within the CEP (such as meetings with Advising, Practice, the Learning Resource Center, etc.).

Probation 1

When a student first goes onto probation, s/he starts on Probation 1. Students on Probation 1 are given two semesters to regain good academic standing. Outcomes for Probation 1 include:

  • Students who meet the procedural and technical terms of their Probation 1 contract are removed from probation.
  • Students who meet the procedural terms of their Probation 1 contract but violate the technical terms, move on to Probation 2.
  • Students who succeed in all technical areas, but at the same time violate the procedural terms of their contract, are not automatically removed from probation. Instead they may be required to file a formal appeal to be removed from probation. A rejection of this appeal results in the student's moving to Probation 2.
  • Students who fail to meet the procedural and technical terms may be blocked from registering for further work at the BAC. They will not be permitted to register until they meet with the Student Advisory Committee (SAC) in order to create a more structured plan for their Probation 2 semester. The SAC has the authority to uphold a registration block and can mandate up to a one year's leave of absence for a student. Failure to attend this meeting results in a permanent registration block.

Probation 2

Students on Probation 2 have one semester to regain good academic standing. If they do not achieve good academic standing at the end of one semester, they face an academic hearing to determine whether they can continue their studies at the BAC.

The terms for Probation 2 are otherwise the same as Probation 1, with any additional conditions dictated by the Student Advisory Committee written into the student's probation contract. Outcomes for Probation 2 include:

  • Students who meet the procedural and technical terms of their Probation 2 contract are removed from probation.
  • Students unable to complete the technical terms of their CEP in order to regain good academic standing must attend an academic hearing with the Educational Review Board to determine whether they will be allowed to continue at the BAC.
  • Students who succeed in all technical areas, but at the same time violate the procedural terms of their contract, must appeal to be removed from probation. If the appeal is rejected, then the student is given a second semester of Probation 2 and is expected to adhere to any terms laid out in that semester's contract.

Return to Probation

If a student who was previously on probation but had regained good academic standing, later returns to probation, s/he will return to probation at the same level that s/he was is the semester of his/her last probation contract. (A student previously at Probation 1 will return at Probation 1; a student previously at Probation 2 will return at Probation 2). Any student returning to probation may be required to meet with the Student Advisory Committee before being allowed to register.

Student Advisory Committee

The Student Advisory Committee (SAC) is an interdepartmental group of administrators (administrative faculty and advisors) meant to intervene and support students for whom the existing probation format has proven ineffective. The SAC consists of representatives of Advising, Practice, Student Development, and the Learning Resource Center (although other departments may be represented).
Students who have violated the terms of their contract and have continued to struggle academically are required to meet with representatives of the SAC before being allowed to re-register. The SAC establishes a more comprehensive, interdepartmental support plan meant to improve a student's chance of succeeding. The SAC has the authority to uphold a registration block and can mandate up to a one-year leave of absence for any student on probation. If a student does not meet with the SAC, her/his registration is permanently blocked. The SAC plan is documented in a student's probation contract and will be monitored by her/his academic advisor.

A student who violates her/his SAC Probation Plan will have her/his registration blocked the following semester. As a consequence, the student will then need to appeal to the Educational Review Board in order to remain at the BAC.

Educational Review Board

A student who reaches the end of Probation 2 without regaining good academic standing must petition the Educational Review Board to remain at the BAC. The Educational Review Board is an interdepartmental group of administrators brought together to evaluate and advise students who have completed two semesters of probation but have been unable to regain good academic standing. The Board can include:

  • Dean and/or associate director of Advising Services
  • Dean for student's program
  • Practice representative
  • Representative of provost's office
  • The student's academic advisor
  • Depending on the specific situation, additional administrators may be asked to participate.

Students must petition the Educational Review Board in writing. A hearing will be scheduled, and they will meet in person with the board. They explain how they have arrived at their present academic and/or practice situations and demonstrate that they have made a good-faith effort to improve their standing. They also present a plan that lays out how they intend to address their status. The board members are allowed to ask questions of them.

The Educational Review Board has considerable latitude in determining a course of action to best serve a student's need. Outcomes may include, but are not limited to:

  • Granting the student an extra probation semester. This will be a heavily proscribed semester meant to address the student's perceived needs. It may include class work outside the student's curriculum. A student must regain good academic standing during this semester or show significant improvement in the proscribed areas. Failure to do so can mean dismissal for a minimum of two years.
  • The board may mandate the student take a leave of absence (LOA). The student may be asked to complete additional requirements while on leave then reappear before the Board. If the student meets these proscribed terms, he or she may then be granted the extra probation semester at the same terms as discussed above.

The Board may opt to dismiss a student for a minimum of two years. After this time, a student will need to reapply to the college and also repetition the Educational Review Board to be allowed to return.

Any student required to appear before the Educational Review Board is blocked from further registration unless the board approves an additional semester.

Satisfactory Educational Progress and Probation for Online M.Arch students

Satisfactory Educational Progress is met by earning practice hours each semester and maintaining a cumulative studio GPA of 2.70 and a cumulative GPA of 2.70. Students who do not meet these requirements will be placed on probationary status. Students on probationary status will be reviewed by the Online M.Arch Management Team consisting of the dean of School of Architecture, the director of M.Arch Thesis, and the director of Online M.Arch (plus the dean of Practice where issues of practice are concerned). Reviewed students will be placed in one of three categories: Incomplete, Repeat, or Dismiss.

Incomplete category students will be provided a written Contract for Educational Progress (CEP) stating the process by which probationary status can be eliminated through a change of grade for a particular course to a B-, or in exceptional cases, to a grade less than B- which increases the GPA in question to at least 2.70. The CEP is a formal contract which outlines a reasonable course of action for the student to follow in order to achieve Satisfactory Educational Progress. The contract specifies target goals or ranges of achievement that must be obtained prior to the next semester. Failure to meet the terms of the CEP will result in reconsideration of the student's case by the Management Team, which may reissue a new CEP, require the student to repeat the course in question, or dismiss the student from the program. The CEP and the result of the student's efforts to meet the terms of that contract will be communicated to the student and placed in the student's file.

Repeat category students will be required to repeat the course in question and will be charged the appropriate proportional tuition. Upon completion of the repeated course, the grade in the first instance of the course will be changed to ‘NC' and the grade for the repeated course will be used to calculate GPA.

Dismiss category students will be required to withdraw from the program.

Satisfactory Educational Progress (SEP) and Academic Probation for MDS Students

Ongoing Satisfactory Educational Progress and graduation requirements are met by maintaining a cumulative GPA of 2.70. Students who do not meet the cumulative GPA requirement will be placed on probationary status. Students on probationary status will be reviewed by the Master of Design Studies Management Team. Reviewed students will be given a Contract for Educational Progress (CEP) or be dismissed from the program. The CEP is a formal contract which outlines a reasonable course of action for the student to follow in order to achieve Satisfactory Educational Progress. Contracts for Educational Progress and the result of a student's efforts to meet the terms of the contract will be communicated to the student and placed in the student's file. A CEP may include:

  • Attainment of a higher GPA in future semesters
  • Repetition of a course
  • Completion of additional assignments
  • Taking a course for 0 credits on a pass/fail basis in order to raise a prior grade. Such a course would be paid for on a fee basis, and would not be eligible for financial aid.

Failure to meet the terms of the CEP will result in reconsideration of the student's case by the Management Team, which may issue another CEP or dismiss a student from the program.

Financial aid regulations include standards for academic progress and rate of passage through the program. Students who are on academic probation for two semesters, or who are matriculated in the program for more than six semesters, are at risk of losing financial aid. Students placed on a CEP should contact the financial aid office to discuss the impact of CEP status on their ability to receive financial aid.