Nov 29, 2023  
2023-2024 College Catalog 
    
2023-2024 College Catalog

Academic Information


 
 

Credit courses are listed with a course prefix, course number, credits, course description, pre/co-requisites, lecture/lab hours, and the total number of hours per week.

Course Numbering System

1-9 Developmental courses.

Credits earned in these courses are not applicable toward associate degree programs; however, upon approval by the chief academic officer, some developmental courses may provide credit appropriate for certificate programs.

10-99 Basic non-degree courses for certificate programs.

Credits earned in these courses are applicable toward certificate programs but are not applicable toward an associate degree. (ESL courses may also be numbered 10-99 but are not applicable to a certificate or degree.)

100-199 Freshman-level courses applicable toward associate degrees and certificate programs.

200-299 Sophomore-level courses applicable toward associate degrees and certificate programs.

Course Credits

Each semester hour of credit given for a course is based on the “academic hour,” which is 50 minutes of formalized, structured instructional time in a course weekly for fifteen weeks, for a total of 750 minutes (15 hours) of instruction. Courses may include lectures (instruction, discussion), laboratory (including clinical training, studio, or internship), out-of-class study/activities or a combination thereof, depending on the discipline. In addition to instructional time, an appropriate evaluation/examination is required for each course. If the final evaluation is a final examination, a minimum of 50 minutes is required but examinations should not exceed a total of 150 minutes (2.5 hours) per course. Credits may be assigned to courses as follows:

  • Lecture - One academic hour of lecture per week, generally for 15 weeks, plus an evaluation or examination, equates to one semester-hour (credit).
  • Laboratory - Two to five academic hours, depending on the discipline, may include laboratory, clinical training, supervised work experience, internship, or other similar activities. Usually for 15 weeks, plus an evaluation or examination period, equates to one semester-hour (credit).
  • Asynchronous Distance Learning or Hybrid - Use a mix of traditional contact hours and learning activities with students and faculty separated by time and place.
  • General Usage Courses - Variable academic hours from one to five credits.

Grading System

The quality of performance in any academic course is reported by a letter grade, the assignment of which is the responsibility of the instructor. These grades denote the character of study and are assigned quality points as follows:

  A Excellent: 4 grade points per credit
  B Good: 3 grade points per credit
  C Average: 2 grade points per credit
  D Poor: 1 grade point per credit
  F Failure: 0 grade points per credit
  I

Incomplete: No grade point credit. The “I” grade is to be used only for verifiable unavoidable reasons that a student is unable to complete a course within the normal course time. To be eligible to receive an “I” grade, the student must (1) have satisfactorily completed more than 60% of the course requirements and attendance and (2) must request the faculty member to assign the “I” grade and indicate why it is warranted. The faculty member has the discretion to decide whether the “I” grade will be awarded. Since the “incomplete” extends enrollment in the course, requirements for satisfactory completion shall be established through consultation between the faculty member and the student. In assigning the “I” grade, the faculty member must complete documentation that (1) states the reason for assigning the grade; (2) specifies the work to be completed and indicates its percentage in relation to the total work of the course; (3) specifies the date by which the work must be completed; and (4) identifies the default (B, C, D, F, P, R, or U) based upon course work already completed. Completion dates may not be set beyond the last day of the subsequent semester (to include summer term) without written approval of the chief academic officer of the campus. The student will be provided a copy of the documentation. An “I” grade will be changed to a “W” only under documented mitigating circumstances which must be approved by the Chief Academic Officer of the campus.

  R Re-Enroll: No grade point credit; the “R” grade may be used as a grade option in developmental and ESL courses only, to indicate satisfactory progress toward meeting course objectives. In order to complete course objectives, students receiving a “R” grade must re-enroll and pay the specified tuition.
  P/U Pass/Unsatisfactory: Students under grade option will receive a “P” or “U,” except where an “R,” “I,” or “W” is appropriate. P/U grades are used for non-punitive purposes and requires the approval of the division dean responsible for the course or designated academic administrator. This grade must be used for an entire section of a course but not for single students within a course. The “P” grade is not included in GPA calculations. Students not making satisfactory progress will receive a grade of “U.”
  S/U Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory: No grade point credit; not used in calculating the grade point average. Used only for satisfactory completion of developmental studies courses (numbered 1-9) and ESL courses. Students making satisfactory progress but not fulfilling all objectives shall be graded with a “R” and re-enroll to complete the course. Students not making satisfactory progress will receive a grade of “U.”
  W Withdrawal: No credit. A grade of “W” is awarded to students who withdraw or are withdrawn from a course after the add/drop period but prior to the completion of 60% of the session. To ensure that students remain in good standing, they must initiate the withdrawal via the student information system (SIS) prior to the completion of 60% of the session. After that time, the student will receive a grade of “F.” Exceptions to this policy may be made under mitigating circumstances that must be documented and approved by the instructor, division dean, and Vice President for Academic Affairs. A copy of the documentation must be placed in the student’s academic file.
  X

Audit: No credit. Permission of the division dean or another appropriate academic administrator is required for a student to audit a course. Students may change courses from audit to credit or credit to audit within the add/drop period of the course. Students enrolled for audit will not receive credit, the course is not included as part of the student’s course load. In order to receive credit for a previously audited course, the student must re-enroll and pay normal tuition. Advanced standing credit should not be awarded for a previously audited course.

The grades of A, B, C, D, P, and S are passing grades. Grades of F and U are failing grades. R and I are interim grades. Grades of W and X are final grades carrying no credit.

 Grade Point Average (GPA)

Cumulative Grade Point Average includes all courses attempted, is computed each semester and is maintained as record of the student’s academic standing. When a course is repeated, only the last grade earned is counted in the GPA for satisfying curricular requirements unless the course is designated repeatable for credit or is a general usage course. For courses taken fall 2021 and repeated after fall 2021 only the highest grade earned is counted in the computation of the cumulative GPA and for satisfying curricular requirements unless the course is designated repeatable for credit in the Master Course File or is a General Usage course. In instances of courses designated as repeatable, all grades/credits are counted in the computation of the GPA. Grades other than “A”, “B,” “C,” “D,” and “F” will not count as first of subsequent attempts when calculating the cumulative GPA. Courses that do not generate grade points are not included in credits attempted.

Curriculum Grade Point Average only includes courses applicable to the student’s curriculum and is computed to ensure that the student meets the graduation requirement for that curriculum. 

Grade points are computed by multiplying the number of credits completed by the points for the grades earned. For example, for BIO 102-01 (4 credits), the student earned a B grade (3 points) = 12 grade points.

Grade Reports

Final grade reports are available to the student after the end of each semester via their MyVPCC account.  Final grades are a part of the student’s permanent academic record.  The evaluation of a student’s work and assignment of a grade are the responsibility and the prerogative of the individual instructor. If you think, however, that the final grade you received in a course was assigned in a manner inconsistent with the course syllabus or was assigned using a method other than that used to compute other students’ grades in that course, you may resolve the matter through an informal or a formal procedure. Details regarding the grade appeal process are available in our Student Handbook.

Transcripts

A student may request a copy of their permanent record from the College be forwarded to other educational institutions, employers, or any person(s) designated by the student. If the student attended Virginia Peninsula Community College after 1977, requests to send transcripts to another member of the Virginia Community College System (VCCS) is not necessary. Electronic transcripts available via the VCCS Student Information System will be sufficient for colleges within the VCCS.

Visit our Parchment Storefront to order your transcripts. Students may visit Enrollment Management to pick up official transcripts. Telephone and third-party requests for transcripts are denied. 

Classification of Students

All students are classified according to the following categories:

Curricular student: a student who has satisfied the following college admission requirements and has been admitted to a degree or certificate program.

  • holds a high school diploma, a GED or its equivalent
  • the Office of Admissions has received all required documents for general admission to a curricular program
  • admission into one of the curricula programs

Non-curricular student: a student who is not formally admitted to one of the curricula but who is classified according to one of the following student goals or conditions:

  • updating employment skills for present job
  • developing skills for new job
  • career exploration
  • personal satisfaction and general knowledge
  • transient student
  • high school student (with college approval only)
  • auditing a course (with college approval only)

Freshman: a student who has fewer than 30 credits.

Sophomore: a student who has 30 or more credits completed in the designated curriculum, including relevant transfer credits.

Student Status

Full-time: a student enrolled in courses totaling 12 or more credit hours.

Part-time: a student enrolled in courses totaling less than 12 credit hours.

Academic Load

A minimum full-time load is 12 semester hours, and the maximum full-time load is 18 credit hours, the normal academic course load is 15-17 credits. A curricular student wishing to carry an academic load of 19 credits or more (excluding the SDV 100  or SDV 101 ) must have a 3.0 average or higher and the approval of his or her division dean.

If the student has received academic warning or is on academic probation, he or she may be required to take less than the normal course load.

Examinations

All students are expected to take their final examinations at regularly scheduled times. No exceptions will be made for a student without the permission of the division dean and the instructor.

Repeating a Course

A student will be limited to two enrollments in the same credit course. Students requesting to enroll in the same course more than twice must meet with their advisor. If the student has an overall GPA of 2.0 or higher at the time of the request, the Director of Advising will approve the request. If the student does not have an overall GPA of 2.0 or higher, the request will be denied. The Director of Advising may require the student to wait until final grades are posted from the previous term to insure the 2.0 GPA has been achieved.

Credit courses that are designated as repeatable for credit in the Master Course File or are identified as General Usage courses in the Master Course File may be repeated for credit. (General Usage courses include those numbered 90-190-290; 93-193-293; 95-195-295; 96-196-296; 97-197-297; 98-198-298; 99-199-299.) Other than general usage courses, only those courses designed to develop and maintain proficiency in the visual and performing arts, or to meet requirements for certification or re-certification in allied health or applied technology fields, may be designated as repeatable for credit. Students should be limited to 10 credits earned through multiple enrollments in the same course.

Repeated courses affect the cumulative grade point average (GPA) in the following way(s):

  • For courses taken fall 2021 and repeated after fall 2021 only the highest grade earned is counted in the computation of the cumulative GPA and for satisfying curricular requirements unless the course is designated repeatable for credit int he Master Course File or is a General Usage course. (Please note that grades of “S”, “P”, “U”, “X”, “I”, and “W” will not count as first or subsequent attempt for the purpose of GPA calculation, although they do not count as attempts toward the two enrollment limit rule.
  • For courses taken beginning fall 1996 and before fall 2021 only the most recent course attempt will be calculated into the cumulative GPA, and credit for all previous attempts will be forfeited.
  • For courses taken the first time during or after summer 1994 and repeated before or during summer 1996, only the most recent course attempt was calculated into the cumulative GPA, and credit for all previous attempts was forfeited.
  • When both/all attempts were made before summer 1994, all semester grades were averaged into the cumulative GPA, and all semester credits earned were retained.
  • For a course taken before summer 1994 and repeated once during or after summer 1994 (but before fall 1996), all semester grades were averaged into the cumulative GPA, and all semester credits earned were retained.
  • Certain courses, including general usage courses and those identified as “may be repeated for credit,” are exempt from this procedure.

Auditing a Course

With permission of the appropriate division dean, a student may register for a course on an audit basis without taking the examination or receiving credit. The regular tuition and fee rate is charged. Requests for credit enrollment in a class will be given priority over audit enrollment. Audited courses carry no credit and do not count as part of one’s course load.

Students desiring to change status in a course from audit to credit or from credit to audit must do so by the last day to add/change classes, posted on the Academic Calendar. Please note that auditing a course is considered an “attempt” for the purpose of repeating the course.

Types of Programs

Career/Technical Education (CTE)

Career/technical education programs are designed to meet the increasing demand for technicians, semi-professional workers, apprentices, and skilled crafts persons for employment in industry, business, the professions, and government. These programs normally require two years or less of training beyond high school. They may include preparation for business, engineering technology, health and medical professions, industrial, public service, and other technical and occupational fields. CTE awards offered by Virginia Peninsula Community College include:

  • Associate of Applied Arts degree (AAA): A two-year degree designed to give students a strong foundation in one of the arts-related curricula as preparation for employment immediately following graduation from Virginia Peninsula Community College.
  • Associate of Applied Science degree (AAS): A two-year degree designed to give students a strong foundation in one of the career and technical fields as preparation for employment immediately following graduation from Virginia Peninsula Community College.
  • Certificate (C): An award representing less than two years of study (30-59 credits) designed to prepare students for entry-level positions and/or advancement in a variety of technical, semi-professional and skilled craft fields in business and industry.
  • Career Studies Certificate (CSC): An award representing less than one year of study (9-29 credits) designed to provide just-in-time training and prepare students for certification and/or immediate employment in a number of technical fields.

College Transfer Education

College transfer programs are designed to include the first two years of a four-year program in arts and sciences and pre-professional programs meeting standards acceptable for transfer to baccalaureate degree programs. These programs are equal in content and quality to those provided in four-year, degree-granting institutions to facilitate the transfer of students from the community college to four-year colleges and universities. Transfer awards offered by Virginia Peninsula Community College include:

  • Associate of Arts degree (AA): A two-year degree program that parallels the first two years of a Bachelor of Arts degree at a four-year institution. Liberal studies focus on the fine arts, languages, literature, philosophy, humanities, and the development of critical thinking skills.
  • Associate of Science degree (AS): A two-year degree program that parallels the first two years of a Bachelor of Science degree at a four-year institution. Courses focus on preparing students for entry into education, business, science, engineering, and social science fields.
  • Associate of Fine Arts (AFA): A two-year degree program that parallels the first two years of a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at a four-year institution. Courses are selected for ease of transfer to most four-year colleges and universities.

Graduation Requirements

Catalog of Record

The catalog to be used in determining graduation requirements is the one in effect at the time of the student’s initial program placement into the curriculum, or any subsequent catalog of the student’s choice. If the student separates from the college and reapplies for admission, the student will follow the catalog in effect at the time of application.  The catalog to be used in certifying the student’s graduation shall have been in effect no more than seven years prior to the time of graduation.

Application for Graduation

Students must apply online for graduation via MyVPCC by the deadline date: Summer Semester - June 1, Fall Semester - October 1, Spring Semester - March 1. Applications for graduation will be available two months prior to the deadline. Annual graduation ceremonies are held in May.

Associate Degree Requirements

To be eligible for graduation with an associate degree from the College, a student must have the following:

  • Successfully satisfied all graduation requirements as described in the catalog of record. Substitutions must be approved by the division dean.
  • Recommendation for graduation by the appropriate instructional authority in their curriculum.
  • Successfully completed all course and credit-hour requirements applicable to an associate degree. At least 25% of credit semester hours must be acquired at the college.
  • Met the general education competency requirements.
  • Earned a GPA of at least 2.0 on all coursework applicable toward graduation in their curriculum.
  • Participated in additional activities of the academic program as required. Some academic programs may choose to require students to participate in exit interviews, complete surveys, license exams, or prepare portfolios.
  • Applied online for graduation via MyVPCC by the required deadline.
  • Resolved all financial obligations to the college and returned all materials, including library books.

Certificate Requirements

To be eligible for graduation with a certificate from the College, a student must have the following:

  • Successfully satisfied all graduation requirements as described in the catalog of record. Substitutions must be approved by the division dean.
  • Recommendation for graduation by the appropriate instructional authority.
  • Successfully completed all course and credit hour requirements of the certificate curriculum as specified in the college catalog of record, with a minimum of 25% of the credits acquired at the college.
  • Earned a GPA of at least 2.0 on all coursework applicable toward graduation in their curriculum.
  • Participated in additional activities of the academic program as required.
  • Applied online for graduation via MyVPCC by the required deadline.
  • Resolved all financial obligations to the college and returned all materials, including library books.

Career Studies Certificate Requirements

To be eligible for graduation with a career studies certificate from the College, a student must have the following:

  • Successfully satisfied all graduation requirements as described in the catalog of record.
  • Recommendation to receive the career studies certificate by the appropriate instructional authority.
  • Successfully completed all course and credit hours required of the career studies certificate as specified in the college catalog of record with a minimum of 25% of the credits acquired at the college.
  • Earned a GPA of at least 2.0 on all coursework attempted or applicable toward graduation in their curriculum.
  • Applied online for graduation via MyVPCC by the required deadline.
  • Resolved all financial obligations to the college and returned all materials, including library books.

Second Degree or Certificate

In awarding students an additional certificate or degree, the college may grant credit for all previously completed applicable courses that are requirements of the additional certificate or degree. However, the awards must differ from one another by at least 25% of the credits required in the curricula.

Graduation Honors

Students who have attended Virginia Peninsula Community College for a minimum of 25% of the total credits acquired and who have fulfilled the requirements of degree or certificate programs (except career studies certificates) are eligible for graduation honors. Appropriate honors based upon cumulative scholastic achievement are recorded on the student’s permanent record as follows:

3.2 Grade Point Average: cum laude (with honor)

3.5 Grade Point Average: magna cum laude (with high honor)

3.8 Grade Point Average: summa cum laude (with highest honor)

President’s Award and Vice President’s Award

The President’s and the Vice President’s Awards are presented at the commencement ceremony each spring to a student who has excelled academically (earning a 3.9 GPA), contributed time and talents on campus and off campus, and who has been recommended by a faculty member. The selection process begins in the fall of each year, and the selection is made in the spring semester. The award recipients represent the highest standards of academic achievement and social responsiveness within the graduating class. The President’s Award recipient will receive a certificate and $1000. The Vice President’s Award recipient will receive a certificate and $500. All students who have 60 or more credits earned at Virginia Peninsula with no repeated courses and no course substitutions, who have earned a 3.9 Grade Point Average (GPA), and who will receive an associate degree in the current academic year (summer, fall, or spring) will be invited to apply for the award. Students are required to complete an application, submit a letter of recommendation from one faculty member, and write a 500-word essay on their experience at Virginia Peninsula. The complete application packet must be submitted to the Office of the Vice President of Student Affairs. The Selection Panel, composed of representatives from across the College and led by the Vice President of Student Affairs, will evaluate the applications based on a rubric. Finalists will be given a certificate of achievement at the Student Awards Ceremony.

President’s Honor Roll

Students who have accumulated 24 grade point credit hours or more at Virginia Peninsula Community College and whose cumulative GPA is 3.8 or above will be placed on the College President’s Honor Roll.

Vice President’s List

Students who earned a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or above without any “F” or “U” grades during a semester in which they completed 12 or more grade point credit hours will be placed on the Vice President’s List.

Merit List

Students who enroll for fewer than 12 grade point credits during a semester and earn a GPA of 3.2 or above without any “F” or “U” grades will be placed on the Merit List.

Academic Standing

Students are expected to maintain a 2.0 “C” GPA and make normal academic progress toward graduation. The College keeps students informed of their academic standing by placing appropriate statements on their Grade Reports when they are academically deficient and when they have regained acceptable academic standing.

Good Academic Standing

Students are considered to be “in good academic standing” when they maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 per semester.

Academic Warning

Students who fail to attain a minimum 2.0 GPA for any semester shall receive a notification of academic warning indicating they are at risk of incurring negative academic standings in subsequent terms. Academic warning is not an official standing. See the Educational Services section of this catalog.

Academic Probation

Students who fail to maintain a cumulative GPA of 1.50 shall be on academic probation until such time as their cumulative average is 1.75 or better. The statement “Academic Probation” shall be placed on their permanent records but shall not be placed on the students’ official transcripts. Students may be required to carry less than a normal load the following semester and are required to consult with their advisor. Students shall be placed on probation only after they have attempted 12 semester credits.  

While a GPA between 1.75 and 1.99 may not result in formal academic probation, the student must earn a minimum of 2.0 in his/her curriculum to receive an associate degree, certificate, or career studies certificate. Students placed on academic probation are ineligible for any appointive or elective office in student organizations unless special permission is granted by the Interim Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Success or an appointed designee.

Academic Suspension

Students on academic probation who fail to attain a semester GPA of 1.50 or better shall be placed on suspension only after they have attempted 24 semester credits. Academic suspension shall be for one semester (not including summer). The statement “Academic Suspension” shall be placed on the students’ permanent records but shall not be placed on the students’ official transcripts. 

At the conclusion of the conclusion of the suspension period, the student should submit an Application for Admission or Readmission after Academic Suspension or Dismissal. Upon review the student is notified in writing of their enrollment eligibility for the semester requested. The student may be required to enroll in SDV 100 . Any student whose appeal is denied may request a review by the Interim Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Success.

Following the student’s reinstatement after academic suspension, the student must earn a minimum 2.0 GPA for the semester in which he/she enrolls. The student must maintain a minimum 1.75 GPA for each subsequent semester of attendance. The statement “Subject to Dismissal” shall be placed on the student’s permanent record. Students who have been reinstated from academic suspension will remain subject to dismissal until the cumulative GPA is raised to a minimum of 1.75. Reinstated students may also be required to carry less than a normal course load the following semester and are required to consult with their advisor or the appropriate designee.  A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 is required to graduate. Failure to attain a 1.75 GPA in each subsequent semester will result in academic dismissal.

Academic Dismissal

Students readmitted following academic suspension who do not meet the minimum GPA requirements as described above will be academically dismissed. The statement “Academic Dismissal” will appear on the student’s permanent record. 

Academic dismissal is normally permanent. In exceptional circumstances, students may appeal to the Dean of Retention and Student Success and may be reinstated.

To appeal the dismissal, the student may submit an Application for Admission or Readmission after Academic Suspension or Dismissal. Applications are available on our website. The student is notified in writing of his or her enrollment eligibility for the semester requested. The student may be required to enroll in SDV 100 . Any student whose appeal is denied may request a review by the Interim Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Success.

Students readmitted following academic dismissal must follow the same requirements for continued enrollment as those readmitted following academic suspension.

Academic Suspension or Dismissal from another Institution

Students who were placed on Academic Dismissal or Academic Suspension at their previous institution and are seeking to attend Virginia Peninsula Community College must follow the policies outlined above.

Academic Renewal Policy

Enrolled students who have returned to the college after a separation of five years or more and who have completed 12 or more grade point credit hours with a minimum 2.5 GPA may petition for academic renewal. A 2.5 GPA must be achieved based upon a calculation of all courses and attempts within the qualifying period of re-enrollment. The Academic Renewal Petition form must be submitted to the Office of Enrollment Services.

If a student is determined to be eligible for academic renewal, “D” and “F” grades earned prior to re-enrollment will be deleted from the cumulative and curricular grade point average (GPA), subject to the following conditions:

  • Prior to petitioning for academic renewal, the student must demonstrate a renewed academic interest and effort by earning at least a 2.5 GPA in the first 12 grade point credit hours completed after re-enrollment.
  • All grades earned at the College remain a part of the student’s official transcript.
  • Students will receive degree credit only for courses in which grades of “C” or better were earned prior to academic renewal, providing that such courses meet current curriculum requirements.
  • Academic renewal may be granted only once and cannot be revoked once approved.
  • Academic renewal may affect financial aid or leadership eligibility. These issues should be explored before the student petitions for academic renewal.