University Regulations

Students enrolled in the University are required to conform to the following regulations and to comply with the requirements and regulations of the school in which they are registered. Students who withdraw or are suspended, or who, for any other reason, are not registered at the University for one semester or more, may reapply and, if readmitted, continue their program only under the regulations and requirements in force at the time of return.

If a student knowingly makes a false statement or conceals material information on an application for admission or any other University document, the student’s registration may be canceled. If such falsification is discovered after the student has matriculated at the University, the student may be subject to dismissal from the University. Such a student will be ineligible (except by special action of the faculty) for subsequent registration in the University.


Information on registration procedures is stated on the Office of the Registrar’s website and in the Schedule of Classes, which is available in advance of each semester.

Registration in courses is open only to those persons formally admitted to the University by the appropriate admitting office and to continuing students in good standing. Students may not register concurrently in this University and another institution without the prior permission of the advising office of the school in which they are registered in this University. With the exception of students enrolled in a joint degree program, registration in more than one school of the University requires the written permission of the student advising offices concerned, prior to registration. Registration is not complete until all financial obligations have been met. Individuals without a valid registration may not attend class or earn any course credit.

Eligibility for Registration

Registration for the following categories of on-campus students is held on the days of registration indicated in the Schedule of Classes. A student who is suspended or whose record is encumbered for any reason is not eligible to register. Registration in a given course may be denied to non-degree students by the Office of Non-Degree Students when space is needed for degree candidates.

    New Student—Upon receipt of a letter of admission and payment of any required deposit, new students are eligible for registration on the stated days of registration. Registration for new freshmen is typically conducted on stated days as part of the Colonial Inauguration orientation program.

    Readmitted Student—A student previously registered in the University who was not registered during the preceding semester must apply for and be granted readmission by the appropriate admitting office before being eligible for registration.

    Continuing Student—A student registered on campus in the immediately preceding semester or the summer session preceding the fall semester is eligible to register assuming good standing and enrollment in a continuing program.

Completion of Registration

Registration is not complete until financial obligations have been fulfilled. Students who do not complete their financial obligations in a timely manner may have their registration canceled and will not be permitted to attend class.

Registration for Consortium Courses

Degree students interested in taking courses at any of the other institutions in the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area, Inc. should consult the program announcements of the other institutions. In order to participate in the Consortium program, students must obtain the approval of an advisor and should ascertain from the department of the institution where the course is taught whether they are eligible for the course and whether there is space in the class. Consortium registration forms and detailed information concerning Consortium policy and procedures are available on the Office of the Registrar’s website. Specific inquiries should be addressed to the Office of the Registrar.

Adding and Dropping Courses

During the registration period and before the end of the second week of classes, students may add or drop courses using the GWeb Information System.

During the third and fourth weeks of classes (after the second week and prior to the end of the fourth week), students who wish to add or drop a course must complete a Registration Transaction Form-EZ (RTF-EZ) and submit it to the Office of the Registrar in Colonial Commons; adding a course after the second week of classes also requires the signature of the instructor or other authorized member of the department. A course dropped during the first four weeks of classes will not appear on the student’s transcript.

After the fourth week of classes, students who wish to add or withdraw from a course must complete a Registration Transaction Form (RTF) and submit it to their advising office. A course from which a student withdraws after the fourth week but before the end of the eighth week will be assigned a notation of W (Authorized Withdrawal). The deadline for withdrawing from a course is the end of the eighth week of classes in the fall and spring semesters.

After the end of the eighth week of classes, students who wish to withdraw from any or all of their courses must submit a petition, along with substantial supporting documentation, to their advising office for consideration. Submission of a petition does not guarantee approval. Appropriate withdrawal forms are available online. Failure to withdraw by the stated deadlines can result in an extended financial obligation and the recording of a grade of F (Failure) or a notation of Z (Unauthorized Withdrawal).

Students should consult the Office of the Registrar’s website for academic deadlines for the fall and spring semesters. Academic deadlines for courses that are not offered during the traditional fall and spring semesters can be found at the respective school’s advising office.

All charges for courses that the student drops are subject to the refund policy listed under Fees and Financial Regulations in the Bulletin.

Changes in Program of Study

Changes Within a School—A student may not substitute one course for another within an established program of study or change status from credit to audit or from audit to credit without the approval of the advising office of the school in which he or she is registered. Change from one major field to another within the same school may be made with the approval of the advising office.

Undergraduate Transfer Within the University— Students are admitted to a home school at the time of their admission to the University. Those who wish to change their home school must submit an internal transfer request to the University Registrar. A university-wide graduation requirement is that students must be registered in the college/school in which their primary major is housed. Some schools may require that certain prerequisite courses have been taken and that minimum grades have been earned before the transfer is processed. Transfer into a college/school does not guarantee placement in a limited-enrollment major and students will be transferred into an undeclared major. Requests to transfer schools will not be accepted prior to the second semester of the student’s enrollment at GW. Students should meet prior to submitting an internal transfer request with an academic advisor in both their current college/school and the college/school into which they are requesting to transfer. Additional information, including deadlines, limited-enrollment majors, and prerequisites for internal transfers, is available on the Office of the Registrar’s website.

Graduate Transfer Within the University—Application for transfer to another school must be made to the appropriate admitting office on the form provided by the office concerned. 


Grades are made available to students through the Office of the Registrar after the close of each semester. 


The following grading system is used for undergraduate students: A, Excellent; B, Good; C, Satisfactory; D, Low Pass; F, Fail; other grades that may be assigned are A, B+, B, C+, C, D+, and D. Symbols that may appear include AU, Audit; I, Incomplete; IPG, In Progress; W, Authorized Withdrawal; Z, Unauthorized Withdrawal; P, Pass; NP, No Pass; R, Need to Repeat Course. 

   Repeating Courses for Credit—For courses that do not specifically state that repetition for credit is permitted, a student may, with permission of the instructor teaching the repeated course, repeat for credit a course in which a grade of B- (2.75) or lower for undergraduate students or C− or lower for graduate students was received. The student must complete an RTF form to register. Credit for the repeated course will not count toward degree requirements; the grade earned in the repeated course will, however, be included in the student’s cumulative grade-point average.


The following grading system is used for graduate students: A, Excellent; B, Good; C, Satisfactory; F, Fail; other grades that may be assigned are A, B+, B, C+, C. Symbols that may appear include AU, Audit; I, Incomplete; IPG, In Progress; W, Authorized Withdrawal; Z, Unauthorized Withdrawal; CR, Credit; NC, No Credit.

    Unauthorized Withdrawal —The symbol of Z is assigned when students are registered for a course that they have not attended or have attended only briefly, and in which they have done no graded work. At the end of the academic year, students’ records are reviewed; if there is more than one Z per semester, a student’s record will be encumbered until released by the student’s advising office. The symbol of Z is not a grade but an administrative notation.

Except for courses that specifically state that repetition for credit is permitted, a candidate for a degree at this University may not repeat a course in which a grade of C− for graduate students or better was received, unless required to do so by the department concerned. A written statement, indicating that the student is required to repeat the course, must be submitted to the student’s advising office by the appropriate department chair. 


The symbol I (Incomplete) indicates that a satisfactory explanation has been given to the instructor for the student’s inability to complete the required work of the course during the semester of enrollment. At the option of the instructor, the symbol I may be recorded if a student, for reasons beyond the student’s control, is unable to complete the work of the course, and if the instructor is informed of, and approves, such reasons before the date when grades must be reported. This symbol may be used only if the student’s prior performance and class attendance in the course have been satisfactory. Any failure to complete the work of a course that is not satisfactorily explained to the instructor before the date when grades must be turned in will be graded F, Failure. If acceptable reasons are later presented to the instructor, that instructor may initiate an appropriate grade change, which in all cases will include the symbol I. The work must be completed within the designated time period agreed upon by the instructor, student, and school, but no more than one calendar year from the end of the semester in which the course was taken, or no more than one semester in the case of students enrolled in the School of Business. All students who receive an Incomplete must maintain active student status during the subsequent semester(s) in which the work of the course is being completed. If not registered in other classes during this period, the student must register for Continuous Enrollment status.

When work for the course is completed, the instructor will complete a grade change form and turn it in to the Office of the Registrar. Beginning with the fall 2014 semester, the final grade will replace the symbol of I. If work for the course is not completed within the designated time, the grade will be converted automatically to a grade of F, Failure, 0 quality points, and the grade-point average and academic standing recalculated.

The Grade-Point Average

Scholarship is computed in terms of the grade-point average, obtained by dividing the number of quality points by the number of credits for which the student has registered, both based on his or her record in this university. The grade-point average is computed as follows: A, 4.0; A, 3.7; B+, 3.3; B, 3.0; B, 2.7; C+, 2.3; C, 2.0; C, 1.7; D+, 1.3; D, 1.0; D, .7; F, 0, for each credit hour for which the student has registered as a degree-seeking student. Grades of D+, D, and D, are not used for graduate students. Although credit value for a course in which a grade of F is earned appears on the transcript for the purpose of calculating the grade-point average, no academic credit is awarded. In the case of a student who is allowed to repeat a course, the first grade received remains on the student’s record and is included in the grade-point average. Courses marked AU, CR, I, IPG, P, NP, R, W, or Z are not considered in determining the average, except that courses marked I will be considered when a final grade is recorded. With the exception of Consortium courses, grades in courses taken at other institutions are not considered in computing the grade-point average.

Undergraduate Degree Requirements

To earn a bachelor’s degree, students must complete 120 credits; meet the University general education requirement, school-specific requirements of their home school, and requirements of at least one major within their home school; fulfill the residence requirement; and have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0. Additional school-specific regulations may apply. 

University General Education Requirement

Under the general education requirement, undergraduate students are required to take 19 credits in approved courses in the areas of writing, the humanities, natural or physical science, mathematics or statistics, and social science, plus two writing-in-the-discipline courses. The general education curriculum engages students in active intellectual inquiry across the liberal arts. Students achieve a set of learning outcomes that meaningfully enhance their analytical skills, develop communication competencies, and familiarize them with modes of inquiry.

The distribution for the general education requirement is as follows: Writing—one university writing course (UW 1020 or HONR 1015) and two writing-in-the-disciplines (WID) courses; Humanities—one course in the humanities; Mathematics or Statistics—one course in either mathematics or statistics; Natural or Physical Science—one natural or physical science course with laboratory; Social Science—two courses in the social sciences. The list of approved courses for each area can be found online and students should check the list before registering for classes. Students should address questions about this requirement to their advising office.

Residence requirement

To earn a bachelor’s degree, students must earn at least 60 credits at or through GW, which may include a University-authorized study abroad and study away program. At least 30 of the 60 credits earned at or through GW must be in upper-level courses (numbered 2000 or above); at least 12 credits in upper-level courses must be in the major field, and at least 6 credits in upper-level courses must be in the minor field, if sought.

Graduate Degree Requirements

Graduate students should consult their program’s advising office concerning degree requirements.

Academic Work Load

A full-time undergraduate program is defined as 12 to 17 credits per semester. Undergraduates taking more than 17 credits per semester must have approval from their advising office and will be charged at the rate of 1 credit for each credit exceeding that limit. Exceptions to the extra charge will be made for students taking 18 credits if their program includes UW 1020 and for students in the School of Engineering and Applied Science whose program requires them to take 18 or 19 credits per semester.

A full-time undergraduate student on academic probation may register for up to 13 credits.

Graduate students should consult with their advising office to determine an academic workload that meets the requirements for their degree program.

Academic Standing

An undergraduate student who is not on academic probation or suspension for poor scholarship is considered to be in good academic standing.

    Academic probation: Students are placed on probation if their semester or cumulative grade-point average is below 2.0 in any given semester.

    Suspension for poor scholarship: Students will be subject to suspension if their semester grade-point average is below 1.0 in any given semester; they have two consecutive semesters of grade-point averages below 2.0; or they have three semesters of probationary status on their academic transcript.

    Readmission after suspension for poor scholarship: A student suspended for poor scholarship may apply for readmission after at least one semester following the term of suspension and after having earned a minimum of 12 credits at an accredited institution of higher education. No credit will be assigned for academic work completed while the student is suspended. After being readmitted and completing a minimum of 12 credits at GW and achieving a cumulative and major field GPA of at least 2.0, the student may petition their advising office to transfer in no more than 9 credits or three courses from other colleges or universities (see Earning Transfer Credit after Matriculation policy). A student suspended twice for poor scholarship will not be readmitted.

Dean’s List

Undergraduate students who, in any one semester, earn 12 credits or more and attain a minimum semester grade point average of 3.75 in letter-graded course work, pass all non-graded credit courses, and do not have any Unauthorized Withdrawals (Z) or Incompletes (I), are placed on the Dean’s List for that semester.

Latin Honors

Bachelor’s degrees with honors are awarded to students whose academic records give evidence of particular merit. The student’s grade-point average determines the level of honors as follows: cum laude, 3.4–3.59; magna cum laude, 3.6–3.79; summa cum laude, 3.8–4.0. The grade-point average includes all course work completed at GW. To be eligible for an honors designation, a student must complete at least 60 credits of course work with letter grades (grades included in calculating the grade-point average) at GW.

The grade-point average is calculated by the Office of the Registrar, and the honors designation is entered on the transcript and diploma of those students who earn an honors designation. If Latin honors are entered in the commencement program, honors status will be determined on the basis of work completed by the end of the seventh term and entered only for those students who have completed seven-eighths of the credits required for the degree. Latin honors indicated on the diploma are calculated on the basis of all course work completed. The diploma and transcript are the official indication that a degree was conferred and Latin honors awarded.

Special Honors

Special Honors may be awarded by the faculty to any undergraduate member of the graduating class for outstanding achievement in the student’s major field on recommendation of the major department. The student must fulfill all of the following requirements: (1) Candidacy for Special Honors must be approved by the faculty member representing the major department or field not later than the beginning of the senior year. (2) Such other conditions as may be set at the time the candidacy is approved must be met. (3) At least one-half of the courses required for the degree must have been completed at GW. (4) The specific minimum requirement of the school in which the student is registered must be fulfilled as follows: (a) Columbian College of Arts and Sciences—a grade-point average of 3.0 on all course work taken at GW; (b) the Elliott School of International Affairs—a grade-point average of 3.7 on all course work taken at GW; (c) the Milken Institute School of Public Health —a grade-point average of 3.25 on all course work taken at GW. Special Honors awards appear on the transcript.

Double Majors

Undergraduates can declare no more than two majors; they can pursue minors or secondary fields in addition to the two majors if they wish but are generally advised against pursuing too many specializations.

Students who graduate with the requisite credits for one degree, having fulfilled the major requirements in more than one department, program, and/or school, will receive one degree. They must select a primary degree and major, as only the primary degree will show on the diploma, along with the two majors.

Students who complete the major requirements in their home school and the major requirements in a second school will receive the degree in the major of their home school and a notation on the transcript and diploma that testifies to completion of requirements for a secondary major. It is understood that requirements of the secondary major do not include the general education requirements of the second school.

Students who complete the major requirements for a degree different from the one they will receive in their home school will receive the degree of the relevant major in their home school. For example, a SEAS student completing the degree requirements for a B.S. in computer science and the major requirements for a B.A. in fine arts will receive a B.S. in computer science with a secondary major in fine arts.

Students who complete two majors in the same school also receive one degree with two majors; if one major leads to a B.A. and one to a B.S., the student must declare a primary major and will receive the degree associated with that major.


Students may not declare a minor in the same subject in which they have declared a major. Students should address specific questions about this policy to the school’s advising office.

Double Degrees

To earn two bachelor’s degrees at the same time, students must be admitted to the college or school that offers the second degree; satisfy the general and major requirements for both degrees; complete at least 30 additional credits beyond the credits required to earn one degree or a total of 150 credits; and earn 90 credits in residence at GW. Students interested in pursuing this option must have a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.3. Applications for consideration should be sent to the student’s advising office. 

Study Abroad

Undergraduates who wish to study abroad during the academic year should contact the Office for Study Abroad concerning eligibility, appropriate procedures, and requirements for participation. Participants are billed GW charges for study abroad, rather than fees indicated by the visited school or program. To be eligible for the transfer of academic credit from study abroad, GW students must select a program from the University’s authorized list of study abroad programs. Students must have a 2.75 cumulative grade-point average at the time of application and must have completed 45 credits prior to departure. Transfer students must complete one full semester at GW prior to application. Students who have a significant disciplinary history or who are on academic or disciplinary probation at the time of application are not eligible to study abroad. All programs of study abroad must be approved on the required forms prior to departure. Non-GW course credits earned in authorized programs with a C or above are transferable toward the appropriate degree at GW, provided there is no duplication of work done previously and faculty have designated each course with a GW course equivalent. Participants agree to abide by all procedures and regulations for study abroad as indicated in the Study Abroad Handbook and Participation Agreement distributed through the Office for Study Abroad. In addition to academic year programs, study abroad is available at varying locations during the summer.

Graduate students who wish to study abroad should consult their program’s advising office.

Continuous Enrollment Status

Once entered in a degree program, a student is expected to be continuously enrolled and actively engaged in fulfilling the requirements for the degree each semester of the academic year until such time as the degree is conferred. A student is considered to be continuously enrolled when registered for courses through GW or when registered for Continuous Enrollment and engaged in and appropriately registered for activities such as the following, with the prior approval of the school in which the student is enrolled: cooperative work semester; study abroad program; attendance at another institution with prior approval to have work transferred back to the GW program; completion of outstanding work in courses in which a grade of Incomplete or In Progress was received; or non-course instructional activities unique to the particular school. This status is generally limited to one year. Should the student break continuous enrollment at the University and not request and be granted a leave of absence (see below), he or she must apply for readmission and, if granted, be subject to the requirements and regulations then in force.

Leave of Absence

A degree student who finds it necessary to interrupt active pursuit of the degree may petition his or her advising office for a leave of absence for a specific period of time, generally limited to one calendar year. A degree student who discontinues active enrollment in degree studies without being granted a leave of absence, or a student granted a leave who does not return to active study at the close of the period of approved absence, must apply for readmission and be subject to the regulations and requirements then in force. The right to use of University facilities is suspended while the leave is in effect.

Policy Regarding Students Called to Active Military Duty

Any student who is a member of a military reserve unit or the National Guard and is activated or called to active duty early in a semester or summer session automatically will be entitled to a full refund of all tuition and fees that he or she has paid toward the expenses of that academic term. If the notification of the call to active duty comes after the mid-term examinations or after other substantial graded work has been completed, the student will have the option of either taking a full refund of tuition and fees or taking an Incomplete in his or her courses with the privilege of returning to complete all required course work at some future date without payment of any further tuition and fee charges. It is the responsibility of the student to present evidence of his or her activation to the Office of Student Accounts and to request the appropriate refund.

Should a degree student called up for active duty find it necessary to interrupt active pursuit of the degree, the student may petition their advising office for a leave of absence for a specified period of time, generally limited to one calendar year. Student advisors are encouraged to grant any request to extend the leave of absence for longer than the customary period should military service require an absence of more than one year. All students on active duty will be automatically exempted from the request for a voluntary library contribution without requiring any communication from them or their initials on the bill.

Eligibility for Graduation

Degrees are conferred in January, May, and August. To be eligible for graduation a student must have met the admission requirements of the school in which registered; completed satisfactorily the scholarship, curriculum, residence, and other requirements for the degree as stated in this bulletin; filed an application for graduation by the published deadline date; and be free from all indebtedness to the University. Enrollment is required for the semester or summer at the close of which the degree is to be conferred, and all degree requirements must be completed by the last day of final examinations for that semester or summer session. Undergraduates who pursue a double major across two schools must complete the primary major in their home school in order to graduate. A second major may supplement the primary major but may not substitute for it.

Graduate Thesis or Dissertation

Graduate students whose program includes a thesis or dissertation must meet the following Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETD) deadlines for graduation in the respective semesters: for theses, May 15 for spring, January 15 for fall, and August 15 for summer; for dissertations, April 1 for spring, January 15 for fall, and August 15 for summer.

Doctoral candidates who have not successfully defended their dissertation and met the ETD deadline may not participate in either the May commencement or hooding ceremony.

Students who apply after the published deadlines are not guaranteed commencement materials. Summer graduates who elect to attend the preceding May ceremony must apply for graduation no later than February 1.

    Graduate Thesis or Dissertation—A thesis or dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of requirements for a degree must be presented in its final form by the deadline set by the school concerned. Accepted theses and dissertations, with accompanying files, become the property of the University. Accepted theses and dissertations are submitted electronically; the student pays a processing fee directly to Proquest/UMI. See the appropriate school in this Bulletin for regulations governing theses and dissertations.

Participation in the Commencement Ceremony

Participation in the annual commencement ceremony held in May is open to students who have applied to graduate in the current spring semester or who graduated the preceding fall semester or summer session. With the exception of doctoral candidates, all students, graduate or undergraduate, who need no more than 9 credit to complete their degree requirements, may participate in May commencement ceremonies if there is a reasonable expectation that they will be able to obtain the needed credits during the following summer. The maximum of 9 credit is firm and not subject to petition. 

Complete Withdrawal From the University

A degree-seeking student who wishes to withdraw from all courses during a given semester must complete a Complete Withdrawal Form and submit it to the Office of the Registrar. Forms are available on line, at advising offices, and in the Office of the Registrar. The deadline for complete withdrawal from all courses without academic penalty is the end of the ninth week of classes. Complete withdrawal after the ninth week requires a petition to the student’s advising office.

All charges for courses from which the student withdraws are subject to the refund policy found at the Registrar’s Office website. Failure to complete a Complete Withdrawal Form can result in an extended financial obligation and the recording of grades of F (Failure) or notations of Z (Unauthorized Withdrawal).

The University is authorized to award the degree of Associate in General Studies under designated circumstances. This degree may be awarded to students in good standing who must leave GW after completing 60 credits in residence in a degree-granting GW school; students should consult their school’s advising office about additional requirements for awarding of the Associate in General Studies.

Non-Degree Students

The Office of Non-Degree Students makes credit-bearing courses available to those who are not degree candidates at GW and to students who have been admitted to the University for a future semester. Non-degree students are allowed a maximum per semester of 12 credits at the graduate level and 18 at the undergraduate level, except in special circumstances as approved by the director. Medical and law courses are not available to non-degree students. Special program credit limits may vary.

Non-degree applicants must have appropriate academic preparation prior to enrollment. Prerequisites are specified in this Bulletin in the course description. Contact the department concerned for further information regarding appropriate academic background for a particular course. An applicant who has previously attended this or another college or university must be in good standing at that institution. An applicant who has been suspended from any educational institution will not be eligible to enroll as a non-degree student for one calendar year after the effective date of the suspension. An applicant who has been denied admission within this university will not be eligible to enroll as a non-degree student for the same semester for which the application was denied. Applications and information on registration are available online. Prospective and registered students should acquaint themselves with the regulations concerning attendance and withdrawal stated in this section or at If a non-degree student takes a course for which the symbol I (Incomplete) is assigned, the instructor normally sets a period (maximum of one year) within which the uncompleted work must be made up. An Incomplete that is not changed within one calendar year becomes a grade of IF on the student’s record.

University Policies and Definitions

Right to Change Rules and Programs—The University reserves the right to modify or change requirements, rules, and fees. Such regulations shall go into force whenever the proper authorities may determine. The right is reserved by the University to make changes in programs without notice whenever circumstances warrant such changes.

University Policy on Equal Opportunity—The George Washington University does not unlawfully discriminate against any person on any basis prohibited by federal law, the District of Columbia Human Rights Act, or other applicable law, including without limitation, race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression. This policy covers all programs, services, policies, and procedures of the University, including admission to education programs and employment.

Inquiries concerning this policy and federal and local laws and regulations concerning discrimination in education and employment programs and activities may be directed to the University’s Office of Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action, Suite 320, 2033 K Street NW, Washington DC 20052, (202) 994-9656. Inquiries may also be directed to the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or the applicable state or local agency (for example, the District of Columbia Office of Human Rights).

Questions regarding protections against discrimination on the basis of sex may be directed to the University’s Title IX Coordinator, the Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion, Rice Hall 813, 2121 Eye Street NW, Washington DC 20052, (202)994-7440.

Questions regarding the protections against discrimination on the basis of disability may be directed to the University’s Disability Services Coordinators. Students may contact the Associate Dean of Students, Administrative Services, Office of the Dean of Students, Rice Hall 401, 2121 Eye Street NW, Washington DC 20052, (202)994-6710, and other members of the University community may contact the Executive Director of Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action, Suite 320, 2033 K Street NW, Washington DC 20052, (202)994-9633.

To request disability accommodations, students should contact the Office of Disability Support Services at (202)994-8250 or Employees and other members of the University community should contact the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action at (202)994-9656 or

Academic Integrity—The University community, in order to fulfill its purposes, must establish and maintain guidelines of academic behavior. All members of the community are expected to exhibit honesty and competence in their academic work. Incoming students have a special responsibility to acquaint themselves with, and make use of, all proper procedures for doing research, writing papers, and taking examinations. Members of the community will be presumed to be familiar with the proper academic procedures and held responsible for applying them. Deliberate failure to act in accordance with such procedures will be considered academic dishonesty. Acts of academic dishonesty are a legal, moral, and intellectual offense against the community and will be prosecuted through the proper University channels. The University Code of Academic Integrity can be found at the Office of Academic Integrity.

Patent and Copyright Policies—Students who produce creative works or make scientific discoveries while employed or supported by the University or through substantial use of University resources are subject to the University’s patent and copyright policies. See The Office of the Vice President for Research

Human Research Requirements—Students who are planning to conduct research involving the use of human subjects (for a thesis, dissertation, journal article, poster session, etc.) must obtain Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval before collecting any data. For more information see The Office of the Vice President for Research.

English for Academic Purposes—Undergraduate and graduate international students whose TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores fall below established cut-off points are required to take one or more courses in the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) program. Both undergraduate and graduate students receive credit for EAP courses; however, in most cases graduate EAP credits cannot be applied to a degree. Graduate students placed in EAP courses should anticipate additional tuition expenses as well as possible extension of time needed to complete their degree programs. For detailed information concerning this requirement consult the English for Academic Purposes Program website.

Use of Correct English—A report regarding any student whose written or spoken English in any course is unsatisfactory may be sent by the instructor to the advising office of the school, who may assign supplementary work, without academic credit, varying with the needs of the student. If the work prescribed is equivalent to a course, the regular tuition fee is charged. The granting of a degree may be delayed for failure to make up any such deficiency in English to the satisfaction of the advising office.

Name of Record—A student’s name of record includes the first name, middle initial or full middle name, and the family name. Nicknames may not be used. The University will change the name of a currently enrolled student on its official records but will require satisfactory evidence of a legal basis for the change. The diploma is awarded under the official name of record at the time of graduation.

Student Status—For the purpose of defining student status, undergraduates taking 12 or more credits per semester are considered to be full time, those taking 6 to 11 credits per semester are considered to be half time, and all others are considered to be part time. Generally, an undergraduate becomes a sophomore upon completion of 30 credits, a junior upon completion of 60 credits, and a senior upon completion of 90 credits.

During the fall and spring semesters graduate students taking 9 or more credits are considered to be full time, those taking 4.5 to 8.5 credits are considered to be half time, and all others are considered to be part time. In the summer full-time status requires 6 credits, half-time status, 3 credits. Unless otherwise indicated under the program, all programs of study are offered on both a full-time and part-time basis. International students in F-1 or J-1 immigration status may pursue only full-time programs of study, and such students must register for and complete a full course load each semester as defined by federal regulations.

Graduate students who have completed all course and credit requirements for the degree except dissertation or thesis research may be certified as full-time students provided they are registered for at least 3 credits of dissertation or thesis research, are actively engaged in dissertation or thesis research and writing, and are not employed more than 20 hours per week. Graduate students who have completed all credit requirements for the degree, including dissertation or thesis research, but have not completed all degree requirements, may be certified as full-time students provided they have not exceeded the established time limits for degree completion, are registered for Continuous Research, and are not employed more than 20 hours per week. Those who meet all conditions stated above but are employed more than 20 hours per week may be certified as half-time students.

Attendance—Students may attend only those classes for which they are officially registered. Regular attendance is expected. Students may be dropped from any course for undue absence. A student suspended for any cause may not attend classes during the period of suspension. Students are held responsible for all of the work of the courses in which they are registered, and all absences must be excused by the instructor before provision is made to make up the work missed.

Credit—A credit hour may be defined as one 50-minute class period, one laboratory period, or 1.5 hours of studio class a week for one semester. Credit is given only after completion of registration in a course and satisfactory completion of the required work, or upon the assignment of advanced standing in accordance with the regulations of the school concerned. Credit that has been applied to the completion of a degree may not subsequently be applied to another degree.

Auditing—A person who has been admitted to the University may be registered, with the permission of the instructor, as an auditor in a class (no academic credit). An auditor is not required to take active part or to pass examinations. A student who takes a course as an auditor may not repeat it later for credit. Tuition is charged at the prevailing rate. A student may not change from audit to credit status or vice versa after the end of the eighth week of classes.

Earning Transfer Credit after Matriculation—All students who plan to attend another institution while enrolled at GW and apply credits earned at that institution toward GW degree requirements must complete an Undergraduate Transfer Credit Approval Form and secure the written approval from the GW department that offers a comparable course and from the student’s advising office. With the exception of credits earned from GW study abroad and study away programs, no more than 9 credits or three courses may be transferred from colleges or universities after matriculation.  

Transcripts of Record—Official transcripts of student records are issued upon written request of the student or former student who has paid all charges, including any student loan installments, due the University at the time of the request. A nominal fee is charged for each official transcript. Unofficial copies of transcripts are available to students, by written request, at a nominal fee. Partial transcripts are not issued. Students have access to their unofficial student record through the GWeb Information System.

Student Conduct—All students, upon enrolling and while attending this University, are subject to the provisions of the Guide to Student Rights and Responsibilities, which outlines student freedoms and responsibilities of conduct, including the Code of Student Conduct, and other policies and regulations as adopted and promulgated by appropriate University authorities. Copies of these documents may be obtained from the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs or from advising offices. Sanctions for violation of these regulations may include permanent expulsion from the University. Regulations or requirements applicable only to a particular program, facility, or class of students may not be published generally, but such regulations or requirements shall be published in a manner reasonably calculated to inform affected students.

Right to Dismiss Students—The right is reserved by the University to dismiss or exclude any student from the University, or from any class or classes, whenever, in the interest of the student or the University, the University Administration deems it advisable.

University Policy on the Release of Student Information—The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) applies to institutional policies governing access to and release of student education records.

The University may release the following directory information upon request: name, local address including e-mail, and telephone number; name and address of emergency contact; dates of attendance; school of enrollment; field of study; enrollment status; credits earned; degrees earned; honors received; participation in University-recognized organizations and activities (including intercollegiate athletics); and height, weight, and age of members of athletic teams, as well as likenesses used in University publications. A student who does not wish such directory information released must file written notice to this effect in the Office of the Registrar.

The University’s full policy statement on the release of student information is published in the Guide to Student Rights and Responsibilities, available in the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs or the offices of the academic deans. The full statement also appears on the Office of the Registrar’s website.

Student Identification Number/Social Security Number—The University has converted from use of the Social Security Number (SSN) to identify records pertaining to individual students, although the SSN is still needed to identify the student for purposes of financial aid eligibility and disbursement and repayment of financial aid and other debts payable to the University. The SSN is required when applying for financial aid. The Internal Revenue Service requires the University to file information that includes a student’s SSN and other information such as the amount paid for qualified tuition, related expenses, and interest on educational loans. This information is used to help determine whether a student, or a person claiming a student as a dependent, may take credit or deduction to reduce federal and/or state income taxes. Many efforts are made to protect the privacy of this number, and a student may request an alternate personal identifier. Further information may be obtained by contacting the Office of the Registrar.

Property Responsibility—The University is not responsible for the loss of personal property. A Lost and Found Office is maintained on campus in the University Police Department.