Undergraduate Academic and University Policies
The Catalog and the Student Guide to University Life contain important academic and university policies. The list below points out the location of answers to frequently asked policy questions and elaborates on additional policies.
Undergraduate Grading System and Quality Points
For complete details, please read the “Grading System and Quality Points” section under Academic Policies in the General Catalog.
For complete details, please read the “Admission to Courses on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory Basis” section under Academic Policies in the General Catalog.
Intensify a Course
For complete details, please read the “Admission to the Course Intensification Plan” section under Academic Policies in the General Catalog.
Auditing a Course
For complete details, please read the “Admission to Courses as an Auditor” section under Academic Policies in the General Catalog.
Course Withdrawal Policy
Once the drop/add period for a semester has ended, students who wish to remove a class from their schedule will need to withdraw from the course. Students will login to DataVU and click on the “Withdraw from Sections” link under the Registration heading. Once you click on Submit, the program will take you back to the main DataVU screen. Your course will not immediately show as withdrawn. When you clicked on Submit, an email was generated to your advisor to let him/her know that you want to withdraw from the course. Your advisor will then need to email firstname.lastname@example.org for approval to withdraw from the course. Once the Registrar receives the email approval from your advisor, you will be withdrawn from the course per the date that you, the student, initiated the withdrawal.
Please note that you may not withdraw from all of your courses on DataVU. If you wish to withdraw from all of your courses, you will need to visit the Dean of Students office, located in the Harre Union, to initiate the process.
Repeating a Course For Credit
For complete details, please read the “Repetition of Resident Courses for Credit” section under Academic Policies in the General Catalog.
For students who originally take a course at Valparaiso University and then transfer the course from another institution later, the original attempt taken at Valparaiso University will be used toward the cumulative grade point average. The grade earned at the external institution will not replace a Valparaiso University grade; only credit from transfer courses transfer, the transfer grade does not transfer. If students wish to improve their Valparaiso University cumulative grade point average, the course must be retaken at Valparaiso University.
This information is found in the Student Handbook.
Valparaiso University Retroactive Credit
Retroactive credit is only granted for courses taken in the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, and is only granted if the student took the appropriate higher level course at Valparaiso University. Students who transfer in a higher level foreign language will not receive retroactive credit in that language; however, the foreign language requirement will be met if the course transfers in at a level 203 or higher.
The retroactive credit is posted at the end of the semester in which the student took the appropriate higher level. For more details, please read the “Placement and Special Credit” section under Foreign Languages and Literatures in the General Catalog.
Concurrent enrollment occurs when a student is enrolled in a second university or college while also enrolled at Valparaiso University during the regular academic year, which consists of the fall and spring terms.
Summer enrollment at other universities is not considered to be concurrent enrollment. However, Valparaiso University students planning on taking courses elsewhere during the summer for credits they plan to transfer back need to complete the Transfer Credit Approval form.
Undergraduate students are allowed one concurrently enrolled course with the pre-approval of their academic dean. All subsequent concurrent enrollments must be pre-approved by the Committee on Academic and Professional Standards.
The University Registrar and Director of Financial Aid require that students complete a Concurrent Enrollment form in all cases. The Concurrent Enrollment Form, once it has the appropriate approvals, is provided to the Office of the Registrar. The Registrar then makes a notation in the student’s record regarding the approval. The approved Concurrent Enrollment form is also shared with the Office of Financial Aid.
The Concurrent Enrollment form must be completed even if a student is not planning to transfer those course credits back to Valparaiso University. If a student is planning on transferring the credits to Valparaiso University for use in his/her course of study, then a Transfer Credit Approval form must also be completed.
Both Valparaiso University and the secondary institution will report the student’s enrollment status to the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC). In addition, only Valparaiso University may award and apply any federal financial assistance, so students considering concurrent enrollment should consult with their Valparaiso University Financial Aid Counselor.
The university welcomes transfer students from junior colleges, community colleges, and other regionally accredited institutions of higher education. Generally, courses with grades of C- or above are accepted as transfer credit; however, some colleges require grades of C or above. There are amended requirements for students in the College of Business or the College of Nursing and Health Professions. Students transferring into either of these colleges should check the appropriate General Catalog heading pertaining to these colleges. Grades are not transferable; only credit transfers.
Any resident student who has taken academic coursework at any other accredited educational institution must request the registrar of that institution to send an official transcript to the Valparaiso University Office of the Registrar, where an evaluation is made for possible acceptance of transfer credits. Generally, courses with grades of C- or above are accepted as transfer credit; however, some colleges require grades of C or above. There are amended requirements for students in the College of Business or the College of Nursing and Health Professions. Students transferring into either of these colleges should check the appropriate General Catalog heading pertaining to these colleges. Grades are not transferable; only credit transfers. A Transfer Credit Approval form is also required prior to the student enrolling at the host institution.
Current Valparaiso University students will need to complete the following steps for the evaluation of transfer credit:
- Refer to DataVU under Transfer Equivalency Database for course articulation. All transfer credit requires the Transfer Credit Approval form prior to the student enrolling at the transferring institution.
- Once you finish the course(s), request an official transcript from the transferring institution to be sent to the Valparaiso University Office of the Registrar. All transcripts must be issued directly from the transferring institution to Valparaiso University.
- Official electronic transcripts are acceptable if emailed directly from the transferring institution. Official electronic transcripts may be sent to email@example.com. Mailed transcripts may be mailed to:
Office of the Registrar
1700 Chapel Drive
Valparaiso, IN 46383
If an official transcript is mailed directly to the student, the student may submit the transcript only if the transcript remains unopened and the seal is not broken.
For more information regarding the acceptance of transfer credit, please read the “Admission” section of the General Catalog.
New Transfer Students
For complete details, please read the “Admission” section of the General Catalog.
Additional Requirements for Transfer of Credit
- Students must complete a Committee on Academic and Professional Standards (CAPS) petition to register at another institution ONLY for a fall or a spring semester while CONCURRENTLY enrolled during the SAME semester at Valparaiso University. The CAPS Petition does not apply toward a summer semester.
- The College or university must be a regionally accredited institution.
- Student must earn a grade of ‘C-’or better in a course to be transferred (unless a grade of ‘C’ is required at Valparaiso University. There are amended requirement for students in the College of Business and the College of Nursing and Health Professions).
- A minimum of one-half the number of credit hours required for any major, minor, or interdisciplinary program MUST be earned in residence at Valparaiso University.
- Thirty of the last forty credits presented for a degree must be earned in residence; no more than the last 10 credits may be transferred.
- Course must be a college level course. Courses equivalent to the College of Business courses numbered above 300 must be completed at a four-year regionally accredited institution.
- Transfer courses will not replace grades for previous resident work earned for credit at Valparaiso University, but the requirement will be met.
- Transfer courses are not included in your Valpo GPA.
- Quarter credits are accepted as follows: One quarter credit equals 2/3 sem credit (3 quarter credits equal 2 sem credits; 4 quarter credits equal 2.7 sem credits)
Class Standing of Students
An undergraduate student must have completed 24 semester credits to be classified as a sophomore; 56 semester credits to be classified as a junior; and 88 semester credits to be classified as a senior. A student in the Law School should consult the Law Bulletin.
Leave of Absence
The complete policy can be read here.
Students who finish a semester at Valparaiso University but will not be returning for the following semester are considered “non-returning” and will need to indicate their intention using the appropriate form. Please note that if a student has registered for the term that he will not be returning, the Non-Returning Student Information form must be received before the last day of the add/drop period. A case in which the form is not submitted by the deadline will be considered a University Withdrawal. In both cases the student will need to initiate the process with the Dean of Students in the Harre Union.
University Withdrawal Policy
The notice for a University Withdrawal must be initiated in the Dean of Students Office, located in the Harre Union.
Please visit the Transcript page for complete details.
Posthumous Degrees and Release of Record of Deceased Student
The achievements and contributions of Valparaiso University students are formally recognized at graduation. In case of the death of a student who has made substantial progress toward a degree, it is important that the University acknowledge the work of this individual. To this end, the University will inform the family that, upon written request from a family member to the Office of the Registrar, the appropriate faculty committee may recommend conferral of the posthumous degree under the following policy requirements:
- The student should have had completed at least 75% of their degree-seeking, active program’s credit hour requirements at the time of his/her death. Students in certificate programs only are not degree-seeking.
- The student should have been in good academic (at least the minimum GPA required for graduation in the student’s program of study) and social standing at the University at the time of his/her death.
- The student should have been enrolled for coursework at the University at the time of his/her death.
- Courses in process will be marked with the grade of ‘S’ for satisfactory to avoid any changes to the student’s current semester and cumulative GPA.
- As with other candidates for graduation, the posthumous degree will be recommended to the appropriate committee (Educational Policy Committee, Graduate Educational Policy Committee, or Law faculty).
- The student’s name will appear in the graduation program. The student’s family will decide if the name will be read and the degree conferred during the next graduation ceremony immediately following the death or in a private ceremony.
- The degree will be marked as awarded posthumously on the student’s transcript/academic record as well as on the diploma, which will additionally note the appropriate degree/major and will be available to the family.
Release of Record of Deceased Student
Following the death of a student, the University will release the educational records of the individual student under either of the following condition(s):
- The student had previously granted permission for the requester to access the student’s information. The requester must submit a signed request for records to the Office of the Registrar.
- In response to a legal subpoena, which will be reviewed by Valparaiso University’s General Counsel.
The University will consider requests for records and approved documents will be mailed to the requester in a timely manner. The University will not provide a transcript to any requester.
Verification Letters – Undergraduate and Graduate
Please visit the Verification page for complete details.
Preferred First Name and Administrative Guidelines
Preferred first name information is handled in DataVU under the Students menu.
For complete details, please read the “Readmission of Former Students to Undergraduate and Professional Programs” section under Academic Policies in the General Catalog.