John Cabot University: the Academic Experience

Academic Policies at John Cabot University in Rome

All students are assigned an academic advisor, who is a faculty member teaching within their major or a related discipline. Students confer with their advisors on a regular basis to plan their course schedules and discuss their academic and career plans. Students are still always expected to know their graduation requirements, and make appropriate course selections to best attain their educational goals.

Students should first try to resolve academic disputes directly with their instructor by asking for an explanation of the motivation for the disputed grade. Students who are not able to resolve academic disputes directly with their instructor may appeal, in turn, to the relevant Department Chair, the Dean of Academics, and the Academic Council, to examine the issue and make a final disposition of the matter. 

Academic disputes are reviewed to assess whether the instructor’s grade determination conflicted with law, University or department policy, or the instructor’s own policies, as stated in the syllabus. The University privileges the instructor’s academic freedom, which includes the freedom to assign grades. Academic disputes may be resolved in the student’s favor if the underlying discrepancy resulted in the student getting a lower grade than they effectively deserved. Such review may also reveal that the student’s initial grade determination was too high, and students pursuing an academic complaint do run the risk that their grade may be lowered.

Procedure for disputing a grade determination:

1. The student must first ask the instructor to reconsider the grade, within a month of the learning of it or the end of the semester, whichever is earlier. To do this, they should email the instructor, with the Department Chair and Associate Dean in cc, setting forth their concern, and asking for their grade breakdown for the course, if relevant.

2. If the instructor is not able to resolve the dispute to the student’s satisfaction, the student may appeal in writing to the Department Chair with the Associate Dean in cc. The student should provide the Department Chair with all documentation necessary to review the contested grade (e.g., course syllabus; the original, graded papers; tests; copies of presentations). Following receipt of a properly documented appeal, the Chair will work with both the student and the instructor to try to resolve the dispute. If the instructor concerned is also the Chair, the student should appeal directly to the Dean of Academic Affairs.

3. If the complaint is still not resolved to the student’s satisfaction, the student may appeal in writing to the Dean of Academic Affairs. The Dean will notify the instructor (cc’ing the Chair), and the instructor will be expected to respond to the student and the Dean within a reasonable time, attaching any additional relevant documents. The Dean will then consider the positions of both the student and the instructor and make a final determination. If the instructor concerned is also the Dean, the student should appeal to the Department Chair and then to the Academic Council.

4. The Dean's decision may be appealed, by either the student or the instructor, to the Academic Council.

Academic disputes will be processed as expeditiously as possible. 

The academic community is founded on a belief in the free exchange of ideas. An integral part of this free exchange is recognition of the intellectual work of others, and respect for the instructor and fellow students. All members of the John Cabot community are expected to maintain the highest standards of academic integrity in all aspects of the University’s academic programs.

A student who commits an act of academic dishonesty is subject to disciplinary action. Two reported acts of academic dishonestly could result in dismissal from the University.

Academic dishonesty is taking credit for academic work (including papers, reports, quizzes, examinations, etc.) that is not one's own or has not been originally produced for the course in which it has been submitted.

Academic dishonesty can take many forms:

  • Knowingly assisting another student in submitting work not their own
  • Plagiarism, which includes direct copying, as well as any use of another's ideas, words or created product, without properly crediting the source. Plagiarism can be deliberate or accidental; students are responsible for ensuring that any work submitted with their name on it is properly referenced.
  • Although individual instructors may suggest their own guidelines for avoiding plagiarism in papers and reports, the following rules should generally be observed:
    a. Any sequence of words appearing in a student essay or report that does not originate from the student should be enclosed in quotation marks, and its source fully and accurately identified in a note or in the text. Great care must be taken that quoted material is quoted accurately.
    b. A paraphrase should not be enclosed in quotation marks but should be marked using a proper bibliographic reference.
    c. An interpretation or idea based on a book or other source of information should be identified via a bibliographic reference.
  • The unauthorized use of generative AI
  • Cheating, which includes giving or receiving assistance on a quiz, examination, or other assignments in any way not specifically authorized by the instructor. Cheating also includes the unauthorized possession or use of generative AI, calculators, notes, formulas, dictionaries, tables, graphs, charts, or other memory aids on a quiz or examination. Students are responsible for making sure that all unauthorized materials are completely put away, and may be sanctioned for mere negligence in appearing to possess unauthorized materials.
  • Submitting the same work in more than one course, without the explicit approval of both instructors. This includes courses with the same code (like different sections of EN 110), so that a student who is retaking a course may not submit the same work in a subsequent semester without the permission of the instructor.
  • Paying a third party to prepare work that is submitted for academic credit in a student’s name

A student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will generally receive a reduced, if not failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. Severe acts of academic dishonesty may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course.

Instructors must report material instances of academic dishonesty to the Dean of Academic Affairs.

A student who is reported twice for material acts of plagiarism, cheating or double-submissions is subject to dismissal from the University. Students found to have paid third-parties for their work may be subject to immediate dismissal on the basis of that act alone. In these cases, the Dean will ask the Academic Council to make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.

A student may appeal an instructor’s determination of academic dishonesty by submitting a written statement to the Dean, setting forth the relevant facts and interpretations.  The statement must be received by the Dean within seven working days of when the student is informed of the instructor’s determination of academic dishonesty. The instructor will be given a copy of the student’s statement, and the chance to respond to it. 

The Dean will review the various submissions and may grant the appeal if the instructor’s determination appears unreasonable. If an appeal to the Dean is not resolved to the student’s satisfaction, s/he may ask the Dean to refer the matter to the Academic Council. When an appeal is resolved in the student’s favor, the Dean will delete the report of academic dishonesty, and direct the instructor to grade the disputed material on its merits.

A student whose cumulative grade point average at the University falls below 2.00 will be placed on academic probation. Students placed on academic probation then have two regular semesters to remove themselves from probation (or just one semester, in the case of conditional admits). If they fail to do so, they will be dismissed from the University. Students who are dismissed can appeal the dismissal. Their appeal will be evaluated by the Academic Council and Admissions Committee. Students on academic probation are not eligible to hold office in student organizations, nor to represent the University in any official capacity.

John Cabot provides faculty-staffed tutoring centers free-of-charge for all John Cabot students.

The Writing Center offers free, one-hour consultations to all JCU students on: brainstorming, choosing a topic, developing research questions; formulating a thesis, building an argument, drafting, and revising; grammar, organization, clarity and style; evaluating and integrating source information; MLA/APA documentation and formatting; and writing statements of purpose/personal statements, cover letters and resumes/CVs.

The Writing Center does not proofread or correct papers. Instead, it promotes a collaborative effort between tutor and tutee that results in effective writing. The focus is on both the form and mechanics of writing, i.e., spelling, punctuation, and grammar, as well as on the more subtle, yet equally important issues of usage, tone, and register. The parameters of academic honesty are also dealt with when appropriate, in order to recognize and clarify differences in cultural expectations. 

Students may make appointments twice per week. Beyond that, students can attend appointments on a walk-in basis. Appointments can be made online through the “Schedule an appointment” button on the website. Please arrive on time for your appointment. Students who arrive late may lose their appointment if another student arrives. Please come to your appointment well-prepared. Bring assignment guidelines, drafts, and/or graded papers with professors' comments, and come with specific questions in mind. 

The Math Center provides academic support in quantitative subjects (such as mathematics, statistics, economics, and accounting) to all students enrolled at John Cabot University. It is supervised by a faculty tutor, Prof. Margaret Kneller, and supported JCU peer tutors. Students may schedule appointments on-line on the Math Tutoring Center's page

The FLRC provides academic support in Italian, French and Spanish to all students enrolled in JCU Foreign Language courses at any level, in order to create an open atmosphere of learning for students who would like to improve their language skills - speaking, writing, reading, and listening comprehension. 

FLRC tutors are all mother tongue or near-native speakers and are selected, trained, and supervised by the FLRC Coordinator. Students may make appointments online (up to 24 hours in advance) at the following link: 

FLTC also offers Language Conversation Tables to enable students to practice and improve their oral proficiency. The Conversation Tables take place in the Tiber Cafè and are led by FLRC tutors. Check the bulletin board outside 

Specific requirements for attendance in any given course, except as described below, are the prerogative of the instructor and will be stated in the course syllabus provided by the instructor at the beginning of the term. Students are responsible for being informed of their instructors’ attendance policies. A student’s absence from a given class may be excused by the instructor in accordance with the policy indicated in the syllabus for the class and otherwise at the instructor’s discretion.

An absence from a given class may also be excused by the Dean’s Office for reasons such as the following: 

  • the student’s own illness or hospitalization;
  • the student’s physical inability to reach the university campus;
  • death in a student’s immediate family (when the student attends the funeral);
  • impending death or life-threatening illness or injury in the student’s immediate family, when the student is absent in order to be present with the ill or injured person;
  • the pursuit of high-level activities in such areas as champion-level competitions or professional artistic pursuits;
  • the observance of a religious holiday; or
  • required military service on the part of the student.

The Dean’s Office will not excuse absences resulting from, e.g., job interviews, family celebrations, travel difficulties, student misunderstandings of instructor or university policies, or other matters involving the personal convenience of a student.

In order to request an excused absence from the Dean’s Office, the student must submit the Excused Absences Request Form along with the appropriate documentation supporting the request. A request will not be granted absent the necessary documentation. Furthermore, a request should be made within five academic days of an absence.  

When the Dean’s Office grants an excuse request, it will notify the faculty member. While the Dean’s Office may validate students’ requests when proper documentation is provided, this does not exempt the student from meeting the learning objectives of the course as set by the instructor. Students are always advised to communicate with their instructors regarding the impact of their absences on their academic circumstances. An instructor may advise a student to withdraw from a class if absences seem likely to prevent the student from successfully completing the course. If the deadline to withdraw has already passed, students should contact the Dean’s Office for advising.

An instructor will provide a student whose absence from a class is excused with:

a. an appropriate opportunity to make up for the credit lost because the student failed to complete an in-class credit-bearing exercise (in-class work that counts toward a student’s grade) scheduled for a day when the student was absent with excuse;
b. an appropriate opportunity to submit credit-bearing homework (work done out of class that counts toward a student’s grade) the student was unable to submit in virtue of an excused absence. (It will ordinarily be assumed that a student can submit a homework exercise remotely. It is the responsibility of the student to make the case that completing and submitting an exercise was not realistically possible under the circumstances.)

Absences from major examinations require a Dean’s Office excuse. Students requesting such an excuse must submit the Excused Absences Request Form as soon as possible, and no later than the beginning of the exam. Once a request is accepted, it will be the instructor’s prerogative to have the student take a make-up exam, submit a make-up assignment, or have the weight of the missed exam shifted to another assessment. Note that as with absences from classes, absences or rescheduling requests due to other meaningful conflicts, such as job interviews, family celebrations, travel difficulties, student misunderstandings or personal convenience, will not be excused.   

It is possible for students to audit courses if space is available. If the tuition costs of taking the course(s) for credit would be covered by the general tuition payment for 12-17 credits, the course(s) may be audited for no additional fee. In all other cases, there is an auditing fee of €900 or $1150 or per course. Students must declare that they wish to audit a course by the end of the drop/add period.

Audited classes do not receive academic credit.

Students are classified at the end of each semester according to the number of credit hours they have completed, including advanced standing credits and transfer credits, as follows:

0-29                     Freshman
30-59                    Sophomore
60-89                    Junior
90 or more             Senior

Effective teaching and learning require a classroom ethos of mutual respect. Instructors have a duty to maintain basic decorum in the classroom, whether in person or online, and to discipline disruptive students who interfere with teaching and with other students’ learning.

The following rules of basic etiquette are expected of students in the classroom:

 a. Come to class on time

 b. Stay in class for the full class meeting, in the absence of an emergency or prior permission;

 c. Listen actively while others are talking and do not interrupt 

 d. Clean up after yourself

Instructors may generally restrict the use of laptops and cellphones in class. When allowed, students are expected to avoid inappropriate use of them for non-class purposes.

The normal course load at the University is 15 credits per semester, and 30 credits per year. The minimum full-time course load is 12 credits per regular semester. Students with strong academic credentials may petition the Dean for permission to take more than 15 credits in one semester. A maximum of six credits may be taken during each summer session.

Credits are expressed in semester hours. Most courses at John Cabot carry three semester-hours of credit and meet twice a week for 75-minute sessions.

Undergraduate students who achieve a 3.50-grade point average in a semester earned in residence in a program of not fewer than 13 completed semester hours are placed at the end of the semester on the Dean's List, an academic honor indicated on their transcript. 

Undergraduate students must declare their major by the time that they have completed 45 credit hours. Transfer students who bring 45 or more hours of transfer credit must declare their major upon entry. Once declared, majors can be changed by notifying the Registrar’s Office. Students considering a change of major should meet with their advisor to discuss the implications of such change.

Minors may be declared as late as the penultimate semester, in which the student petitions for graduation to the Registrar’s Office, which then completes a degree audit to determine the outstanding graduation requirements. 

Majors and/or minors can be declared and changed, if necessary, by using the dedicated form. 

Students may take a maximum of three minors.

Students seeking disability accommodations should identify themselves at the time they pay their tuition deposit or housing placement fee, and no later than the first day of classes.

Students requesting accommodations for medical or physical disabilities, chronic conditions, or learning disabilities should contact the Coordinator for Disability Accommodations, Dr. Carmen Franzese, at [email protected]

To determine feasible and appropriate recommendations, the university will need recent (no older than four years) and detailed documentation of the disability to be accommodated. In the case of learning disabilities, this includes the report of a cognitive assessment specifying recommended accommodations. The university assesses the accommodations that would be necessary for the student to complete a course or program at JCU. After this evaluation has taken place, students will be informed directly by the Coordinator for Disability Accommodations of the accommodations that have been granted. In the event it appears that reasonable accommodations cannot be made for a student with a learning or other disability, the University will refund the application fee, the tuition deposit, and the housing placement fee. John Cabot University cannot provide individual learning or other disability accommodations to students who do not follow these policies.

Undergraduate students who want to receive two degrees from John Cabot University, must complete the requirements for both degrees and complete a total of 150 credits.

Undergraduate students may complete the requirements for more than one major at the same time, as long as the requirements of the individual majors are satisfied. Students may, therefore, simultaneously use a course to satisfy requirements in multiple majors. Students who complete multiple majors receive only one degree.

During the Fall and Spring semesters, the Drop/Add period lasts until the Friday of the first week of classes. During summer sessions, Drop/Add takes place during the first three days of classes. The specific deadline for Drop/Add period is posted on the Academic Calendar.

Courses may be added or dropped freely, subject to availability, during this period. Degree-seeking and Study Abroad students follow the online procedures. After the Drop/Add period, no courses may be added and withdrawal penalties will apply (see Withdrawal from a Course). No refunds will be issued for courses dropped after the Drop/Add period. A student who for any reason does not wish to attend a course for which he/she has registered must follow the usual Drop/Add or withdrawal procedures.

Instructors may, at their discretion, allow students to make-up missed quizzes or other, less important, graded work to students absent without an official excuse. Major examinations (midterms, finals) may only be re-administered or otherwise excused or accommodated, with the permission of the Dean’s Office.

The standard for justifying an absence from a major examination is evidence of a serious difficulty preventing attendance. A serious difficulty includes a student’s own illness, hospitalization or death in the immediate family (when the student attends the funeral) or other situations of similar gravity. Missed exams owing to other meaningful conflicts, such as job interviews, family celebrations, travel plans or difficulties, student misunderstandings, alarm clock failure, or personal convenience, will not normally be excused.

Students seeking an excuse for an absence from a major exam must notify their Instructor or the Dean’s Office prior to the exam, and submit the Excused Absences Request Form, also available on the Registrar’s Office webpage.

Students with more than two final exams scheduled on the same day during the final exam period may submit the Request for a Make-Up Final Exam form to Assistant Dean Andrea Lanzone by the course withdrawal deadline. Requests received after the deadline may not be honored.

Until the final exam schedule is posted, students should assume that they may have exams as late as the last exam period and not make other plans.

The University will not reschedule final exams to accommodate travel plans for anything less than a serious difficulty preventing attendance.

The following interpretations and numerical equivalents are associated with each letter grade. 

The grade F means failing work. A failed course must be repeated in order for the student to receive credit.

The grade of INC (Incomplete) may be assigned only in cases where illnesses, hospitalization, death in the family, or other situations of similar gravity temporarily prevent completion of the required course work (“non-academic conditions”). Grades of INC will normally be granted only to students who have completed the majority of the course work with a grade of C- or better (“academic conditions”). Students who have difficulty completing their work can withdraw from the class up until the deadline with withdrawal indicated on the academic calendar.

The Dean's Office determines whether the non-academic conditions for an INC have been met. Students interested in requesting an INC must contact Assistant Dean Annette Bryson as soon as they can. The professor determines whether the academic conditions – completion of a majority of the work at a C- or better – have been met. The professor can then submit the Request for Incomplete Grade form. Once the work has been graded, the professors submits a Change of Incomplete form to assign the final grade.

Students are informed of the work that they have to complete at the time that the INC grade is assigned. They should expect that professors may not be available to further guide them on their assignments after the semester grades have been submitted. 

For Incompletes given at the end of the Spring term, the work must be completed by the following 1 January. After that time, the grade will be administratively converted to an F. For Incompletes granted at the end of the Fall term, the work must be completed by the following 1 August. After that time, the grade will be administratively converted to an F. For Incompletes given at the end of a Summer session, the work must be completed by the following 1 March. After that time, the grade will be administratively converted to an F. Students seeking an INC must contact the Dean’s Office to explain the motivation for pursuing an incomplete. The Dean’s Office will decide whether an INC would be appropriate in the particular case. If so, the Dean’s Office will then ask the instructor and student to submit an INC form, detailing the work remaining to be completed, the grade to date, and the percentage of the work for the term already completed by the student.  The form INC form must be signed by the student, the Instructor, and the Dean.

Students who withdraw by the withdrawal deadline (and after the Add\Drop period) will have a W recorded on their transcript. This does not affect their GPA.

For purposes of computing the GPA on a student's transcript, the following metric is used:

Designation Interpretation Numerical Value
A Excellent 4.00
A-   3.67
B+   3.33
B Good 3.00
B-   2.67
C+   2.33
C Satisfactory 2.00
C-   1.67
D+   1.33
D Poor but Passing 1.00
D-   0.67
F Failing 0.00
INC Incomplete  
P Passing (C or above)  
NP Not passing (C- or below)  
W Official withdrawal  

The quality points for each course are calculated by multiplying the numerical value of the grade by the number of credit hours of the course. The total of the quality points earned is divided by the total number of credit hours earned. Thus, a student who has taken 30 hours of work and has earned B’s (3.0) in all courses would have 90 quality points and would have a grade point average of 3.00.

In the case of repeated courses, the number of quality points and hours includes only the grade from the most recent course taken. Courses in which grades of INC, P, NP or W are assigned are not included in the quality point computation.

These guidelines are presented to provide students with a general idea regarding how letter grades are assigned at JCU. While each individual course may have different assessment criteria for each grade depending upon the material being taught, the general sense of academic expectations remains. Many instructors assign grades in their class based upon a 100 point (100 percent) conversion. An example of these standard numerical equivalents is given below.  

Grade              Description of Academic Work
A (90-100) Work of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the course.
B (80-89) This is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised. There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluate theory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student's own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture and reference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
C (70-79) This is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings. This level of performance demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.
D (60-69) Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included. In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
F (59 and below) This work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

Graduation Honors are awarded to bachelor’s degree recipients whose cumulative grade point average at the University represents superior academic achievement. Students may graduate summa cum laude with a grade point average of 3.90 or above, magna cum laude with a grade point average of 3.70 to 3.89, or cum laude with a grade point average of 3.50 to 3.69.

Gold Academic Honor Cords are awarded to graduates who have demonstrated outstanding academic achievement by earning the distinctions of cum laude, magna cum laude or summa cum laude.  All academic requirements must be completed at the time of Graduation in order to be eligible for an academic cord.  In the case of May Commencement, students who have outstanding classes pending in Summer and/or have INC grade(s) will not receive the academic cord during the Commencement ceremony, but will receive it should they meet the CUM GPA requirements once all academic requirements are completed.

The Valedictorian is the bachelor’s degree recipient with the highest cumulative grade point average among those who have completed at least 60 semester hours at the University and who are attending the commencement exercises. The Valedictorian participates in the commencement ceremony by giving the valedictory address. Students earning multiple degrees may not be Valedictorian more than once.

Degrees are awarded to candidates who meet the following requirements:

The M.A. in Art History Degree

1. Completion of 36-semester credits distributed over fifteen months of full-time study in three phases: a Foundation Year of research seminars and coursework; a Master’s Exam, administered in June; and a Thesis Semester, with a Professional Experience component, MA Thesis, and MA Thesis Colloquium.

2. An overall minimum grade point average of 2.00 in all courses taken at the University, with no more than two grades lower than C- in core courses.

The B.A. Degree

1. Completion of a minimum of 120 credits distributed according to the Proficiency and General Distribution Requirements of the University and the requirements of the major. At least 60 credits, including the last 30, must be earned in residence at the University. Subject to the approval of the Dean of Academic Affairs, students who are studying abroad in their penultimate semester will normally be awarded a 15-credit exemption.

2. An overall minimum grade point average of 2.00 in all courses taken at the University with no more than two grades lower than C- in core courses required for the major.

3. Payment of all financial obligations to the University.

The A.A. Degree

1. Completion of a minimum of 60 credits, distributed according to the general requirements of the University and the major requirements. At least 30 credits, including the last 15, must be earned in residence at the University.

2. A minimum grade point average of 2.00 with no more than one grade lower than C- in core courses required for the major.

3. Payment of all financial obligations to the University. A B.A. degree may be completed after the granting of an A.A. degree once all of the additional B.A. degree requirements have been met, and on the condition that at least two additional semesters of coursework have been completed following the completion of the A.A. degree in question.

Candidates for graduation must satisfy the general University and major requirements in effect at the time of their entry to the University. Students who are absent from the University for a period of one year or more may be required to resume under different graduation requirements upon their return. Students who require more than five years to complete their graduation requirements must meet the requirements in effect at the beginning of the fourth academic year prior to their graduation.

The commencement ceremony at the close of the spring semester in May is the University’s public celebration of the accomplishments of its students. Only students who have completed all graduation requirements, or who have completed all but two courses of their graduation requirements and will complete those two courses by the end of the following summer sessions, will be allowed to participate in the ceremony. Students who complete graduation requirements at a time other than the end of a spring semester or the following summer sessions are encouraged to return to the University the following May to participate in the commencement ceremony.

Undergraduate students with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.5 are eligible to register for Honors Courses, which are selected 3-credit courses that students may take for four academic credits instead. Students in Honors courses must complete additional assignments (e.g., research papers or portfolios) in which they delve more deeply into the subject matter in question.

Students taking courses for Honors credit enjoy additional mentoring time with their instructors, who are chosen by the Dean of Academic Affairs in conjunction with the Department Chair, based on their expertise and teaching excellence.

With the approval of the sponsoring professor, the Department Chair, and the Dean of Academic Affairs, students may register for independent study/research options (i.e., Independent Study 281 or 381 or Independent Research 481) that allow them to receive credit for academic work, supervised by a member of the faculty in a non-classroom setting. The Application for Independent Study or Independent Research Form must be submitted during the normal registration period. Students must have a minimum GPA of 2.5 and have earned a minimum of 60 credit hours (junior status) to apply for Independent Study or Independent Research credit.

Students may earn up to three credit hours when registered for Independent Study 281 or 381 or Independent Research 481. The number of credit hours depends on the nature and extent of the project(s). One-credit will be awarded for each 37.5 hours of projected work over the course of the semester, on the basis of documentation of the amount of work a typical student is expected to complete within a specified amount of academically engaged time. Factors considered in the calculation of academic credit can include the number of subjects covered, the depth of the examination, the scope of reading and writing assignments, and meetings with the faculty supervisor in furtherance of specific educational objectives.

Whether a project will be coded as Independent Study 281 or 381 or Independent Research 481 depends upon the level of the study to be undertaken, as determined by the sponsoring professor and the Dean of Academic Affairs.

Independent study/research may not be taken to satisfy core requirements in degree programs or other specifically- designated requirements. Courses offered regularly in the curriculum cannot normally be taken as independent study.

Independent study courses must be completed within one semester.

A leave of absence is a temporary leave from the university. Students may take a leave of absence for such reasons as independent study abroad, medical treatment, family crises, or financial issues.  A leave of absence usually runs for one regular semester or academic year. Students may apply for a leave of absence here. To extend a leave that has already been granted, contact the Registrar.

Students who have obtained an INC in a thesis course, and who are not enrolled in any other courses during the completion of the incomplete thesis course, must maintain their matriculation at the University. To do this, they must pay a matriculation maintenance fee during the semester of completion of the thesis. Students maintaining matriculation in this manner will not be charged student activity fees. A student who fails to complete the thesis in this period would receive an F for the thesis course, and have to re-register for it, paying the regular tuition costs for that course.

All students must abide by the various academic and other policies of the University. Occasionally, however, an exemption from these policies may be justified. In such instances, a written petition seeking an exemption to one or more policies must be submitted by the student, with the recommendation of their Advisor, for consideration by the Dean of Academic Affairs and the Academic Council. Forms for such petitions are available here.

Entering degree-seeking students may be asked to take one or more placement examinations before registering to determine their proficiency in certain subject areas. There are placement examinations for English Composition, Italian, French, Spanish, and Mathematics. These examinations are administered before the term begins or during the orientation session at the beginning of each semester. Students who miss the English Composition and Math placement examinations, and do not have relevant transfer credit, will be automatically placed into the introductory-level course, no matter what their outside experience or other qualifications.

Students who have been withdrawn from the University and seek to continue their studies at the University must apply for readmission. Applications for readmission must be submitted to the Admissions Office before the start of the term. The University catalog in effect at the time of readmission will apply to students who are readmitted to the University.

Members of the Armed Forces, including reserve components and the National Guard, may be readmitted if they have withdrawn in order to perform military service.

The registration dates for each term are listed in the University calendar. During the registration period, degree-seeking students meet with their Academic Advisor in order to select their courses for the upcoming semester/summer session. After the registration period, continuing students may register, but will be charged a late registration fee. No student will be allowed to register after the drop/add period.

It is the responsibility of the students to ensure that their course schedule corresponds to the classes that they are attending, including the correct section number.

Courses in which a student received a final grade of C- or below may be repeated. No grade is removed from the transcript, but only the last grade received in a course is considered in computing a student’s grade point average and credits earned. This pertains only to classes taken and repeated at JCU. If a class is repeated outside JCU, both the initial grade and the subsequent grade will appear on the transcript and will be considered in calculating a student’s grade point average. This policy does not apply to certain skills based courses with course descriptions that explicitly state that the course can be repeated. 

Transcripts, both official and unofficial, are available to students, through the Registrar’s Office.

Transcripts cannot be issued for anyone whose record has been blocked (for outstanding University obligations - tuition and fees, library hold, etc.). Transcript requests are processed within two business days. JCU is not financially responsible for transcripts lost in the mail.

Upon initial entry or readmission to JCU, academic credit from nationally-accredited institutions may normally be transferred for academic coursework where a grade of C or above (or national equivalent) was earned. The University generally requires an official course description or course syllabus before awarding transfer credit.

Students who are currently matriculated may transfer credit for courses taken at other institutions by submitting a Course Away form to the Registrar before the courses are taken. Transfer credit will be granted for all passing grades earned, and all grades will be registered on JCU transcripts and factored into the JCU GPA. Students receiving U.S. government financial aid should check with the JCU Financial Aid Office before enrolling in courses at other institutions.

A course officially dropped after the Drop/Add period but before the last day to withdraw from a course (see Academic Calendar) will be recorded on the transcript with a grade of W. A student may withdraw from a course by submitting a Single Course Withdrawal form. Students are financially responsible for courses for which they are registered after the Drop/Add period, even if they ultimately withdraw from them.

Students who wish to withdraw from the semester for which they are registered should submit an Official Semester Withdrawal form. In order to withdraw from the semester, a student must clear all debts with the University.

A grade of W will be recorded for all courses in progress at the time of withdrawal. A student who fails to follow the above procedure, and simply stops going to class, will receive a failing grade for courses not completed.

The deadline to Withdraw from a Semester is the last day of classes (see Academic Calendar).

Students who wish to withdraw from the University should first discuss their plans with their advisor or an Academic Dean, and then can submit an Official Withdrawal form. In order to withdraw from the University, a student must clear all debts with the University.

A student who fails to follow the above procedure, and simply stops going to class, will receive a failing grade for courses not completed. 

Students who fail to register for courses for two consecutive semesters, will be automatically withdrawn from the University.

Students who, at the end of their first semester, fail to demonstrate minimal academic progress (more than a 1.0 GPA) AND have not enrolled for the following semester or otherwise demonstrated an intention to continue their studies, will be administratively withdrawn from the University. In the case of students who have been granted a one-year permit to stay, the University will notify the Italian authorities that they are no longer JCU students.