2021-2022 Humboldt State University Catalog 
    Jun 16, 2024  
2021-2022 Humboldt State University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academic Policies

Return to: Academic Regulations & Enrollment   

Credit/No Credit

Mandatory Credit/No Credit. Some courses are offered only credit/no credit - no letter grades. These include activity courses, thesis projects, field projects, independent study courses, and specialized courses.

Optional Credit/No Credit. In some courses, students choose between taking a letter grade or credit/no credit. A student choosing the credit/no credit option must do so by the eighth week of classes; otherwise, the student will receive a letter grade. Students may take only one optional CR/NC course per semester at Humboldt State. See Bachelor’s Degree Requirements  and Master’s Degree Requirements  for information on credit/no credit unit limits.

Evaluating Credit

For an undergraduate, unclassified post-baccalaureate, and second bachelor’s degree student, credit is equivalent to a passing grade (A, B, C, or C-). No credit is equivalent to a D+ or lower. For a graduate student who is in a master’s degree program, or a credential-seeking student, credit is equivalent to a passing grade (A, B, or B-). No credit is equivalent to a C+ or lower.

Although grades of CR and NC do not affect GPA calculation, some universities and many graduate schools interpret an NC grade as an F.

Declare a Major

It is recommended that students declare a major at the time of application to the university. Students must declare a major by the time they have earned 45 units. 

Double Major (Second Major)

Students may earn a bachelor’s degree with two majors by completing the requirements for both programs. Although both majors appear on the permanent record, the student receives one degree. Students may request a second major only if they meet the following criteria:

  • Declare second major before earning 90 units; and
  • Demonstrate that they can graduate with both majors completed in fewer than 140 total units.

Students who choose to complete a second major and cannot complete the required courses in less than 140 units may submit a request for an exception to the department chair and college dean.

Educational Leave (Leave of Absence)

Undergraduate students (in addition to post-baccalaureate students who are pursuing a certificate or bachelor’s degree) who plan on not attending Humboldt State University for a semester, can request a leave of absence or educational leave from the university if qualified.

A leave of absence may be requested for two terms but may be extended for two additional terms (for a maximum of four terms) under special circumstances. Additional information is available on the Office of the Registrar Forms & Policies webpage or from the Office of the Registrar (SBS 133).

Graduate students, including those who are classified or conditionally classified, and credential seeking students, should request a leave of absence or educational leave from the university if they will not be attending HSU each semester. The request should be submitted to the Office of Academic Programs & Undergraduate/Graduate Studies, SH 217A.

All students must attend at least one term prior to requesting a leave of absence. A leave of absence maintains continuing student status. This allows students to maintain catalog rights and eligibility to enroll for the term immediately after the expiration of the leave without reapplying to the university. While on leave a student is not considered enrolled and is not eligible for any services from the university. Students will be apprised of registration information and deadlines for the term they are to return to Humboldt State, via their HSU email address.

Major Changes

Undergraduate students who wish to request a major change must file the appropriate form with the Office of the Registrar, SBS 133. The required signatures must be obtained from the department before the forms are filed. Some departments may have additional requirements.

Graduate students should contact Academic Programs & Undergraduate/Graduate Studies, SH 217A for information on changing their major.

Students are not permitted to change majors after they have earned 90 units unless the new major can be completed in less than 140 total units. Students who choose to change majors and cannot complete the required courses in less than 140 units may submit a request for an exception to the department chair and college dean using the Major Change Request for Seniors

Repeating Courses

With the exception of “repeatable for credit” courses (identified in the catalog with the designation “Repeatable”), undergraduate students may only repeat courses if they earned grades lower than a C. Furthermore, undergraduate students may only repeat an individual course twice, for a total of three attempts.

Undergraduate students may repeat up to 16 units with grade forgiveness, and up to an additional 12 with grade averaging. For the first 16 units of repeated courses, only the newer attempt calculates into the student’s GPA and each of these attempts counts toward the 16-unit maximum for grade forgiveness. Grade forgiveness will not be allowed for a course for which the original grade was the result of a finding of academic dishonesty. Students may repeat an additional 12 units (beyond the initial 16) with “grades averaged,” where both the original and new grades are included in the calculation of the student’s GPA. Undergraduate students may not repeat more than 28 units total of course work. This limit applies only to units completed at Humboldt State University.

Exceptions occur in cases where an academic program on campus specifically designates that a course is repeatable so that the automatic repeat process does not take place. For instance, a course may be set up by the department to be repeatable 4 times. This means that a student may earn credit for the course a maximum of 5 times. Some courses (e.g. ART 301) have multiple topics. For grade forgiveness to apply, the same topic must be repeated.

Students should submit a petition to the Office of the Registrar, SBS 133, if special circumstances are involved.

Repeating a Humboldt State course that was previously taken at another college may require permission from the university department offering an equivalent course (if the equivalency has not been established by an articulation agreement). Additionally, the department chair must sign a Student Petition, if applicable, which is available from the Office of the Registrar. In order to override the Humboldt State automatic repeat policy, the student needs approval of the department chair on a Student Petition.

The grades of I, NC, RP, RD, and W are not considered as attempts for grade point average computation. Contact the Office of the Registrar, SBS 133, regarding courses taken prior to fall semester 1996. Note: Some universities calculate all attempts of every course and ignore the undergraduate grade point average provided by Humboldt State for post-baccalaureate programs (e.g. graduate level programs, law school, medical schools).

Students who are pursuing a second bachelor’s degree, or who are unclassified post-baccalaureate students, are eligible to use the undergraduate repeat policy. Students should submit a petition to the Office of the Registrar, SBS 133.

Graduate students may repeat courses; however, all grades will appear on the permanent record and count in the grade point average. The units earned toward the degree count only once.

Note: A student may not take a course at Humboldt State, repeat it at another college, and then use the repeat policy to remove the Humboldt State course from the grade point average.

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