1) How are AP credits counted?
To receive credit/placement at Dickinson for your Advanced Placement
scores, you will need to have an official copy of your scores
sent to the Registrar's Office. To know how AP credits are counted
for the various courses at Dickinson, visit the Registrar’s
2) How do transfers receive credit and class standing?
Previous academic work will be evaluated for credit, provided
the coursework has been satisfactorily completed with a grade
of C or better in a program of study that reasonably parallels
the curriculum of Dickinson College. The Registrar will provide
the credit evaluation upon receipt of the final transcript. Class
standing is determined by the completion of a required number
of credits. One becomes a sophomore when 7 courses creditable
toward graduation are completed. Sophomores attain junior status
after 15 courses and juniors become seniors after 23 courses.
All students need 32 credits to graduate, 16 of which must be
earned at Dickinson. Additionally, 4 blocks of PE are required
to graduate but do not carry credit.
3) Are there different ways to meet the language requirement?
All students are required to meet the foreign language requirement
for their Dickinson degree. Students can meet the language requirement
in different ways.
• First, if a student is a non-native English speaker, he
or she may be exempted from the language requirement by the Dean
of the College.
• Second, students may be exempted from the language requirement
by taking a placement exam when they arrive on campus in the fall
or by contacting the appropriate language department.
• Finally, if a student has studied a foreign language for
two or more years in a secondary school, the student may be exempted
from the language requirement by scoring 630 or higher on the
College Board SAT II foreign language subject test, with the permission
of the appropriate language department.
4) What are distribution requirements?
Distribution requirements are courses that every Dickinson student
needs to complete in order to graduate. Distribution requirements
are designed to introduce students to three major disciplines
of learning (arts and humanities, social sciences, and laboratory
sciences) and are classified as Division I, II, and III respectively.
In addition to the Division I, II, and III requirements, each
student must take a First-Year Seminar, a Writing Intensive course,
a Quantitative Reasoning course, a US Diversity course, and a
Comparative Civilizations course. Students must also complete
a second language through the intermediate level. Four half-semester
blocks of physical education are also required but do not count
toward the number of credits for graduation.
More information on the nuances of each requirement can be found
online at http://www.dickinson.edu/bulletin/requirements.html
or in the red College Bulletin.
5) How do I know what course fulfills each requirement?
When you search for classes using Banner, the rightmost column
will be titled “Attribute.” This normally will list
all the requirements each class fulfills. However, if you selected
a specific requirement or attribute in your class search, then
the classes’ other attributes will not appear (for example:
if you search specifically for classes fulfilling the Division
Ic requirement, you will not be able to see if any of these classes
also fulfill the US Diversity requirement). To see all the class’s
attributes, you can click on the course’s CRN (the second
column from the left) and they will be listed above the instructor
6) Can a course that is listed as fulfilling multiple distribution
requirements count for all those listed?
Some courses may fulfill more than one distribution requirement
at a time. For example, 20th Century Art in the Art & Art
History Department in Spring 2005 is listed as “DIV1C”
and “WR,” meaning that this course only counts as
one credit, but it simultaneously fulfills the Division IC and
Writing Intensive Requirements. This is permissible in all instances
except for courses that are listed as both Division III and QR.
If a course is listed as both, you must contact the Registrar
and inform her which requirement you would like the class to meet.
Otherwise, it will be selected for you. Please note: Intermediate
language courses do not fulfill any other general or distribution
7) How do I get involved in the Pre-Health or Pre-Law
advising programs here at Dickinson?
Students interested in the Pre-Professional Advising programs
at Dickinson should seek the advice of their academic advisor
and other faculty, as well as contact the Career Center. Students
interested in the Pre-Health program should contact the Pre-Health
Committee Chair as soon as possible, and will be assigned a member
of the committee as their advisor. Students interested in the
Pre-Law advising program should also contact the Pre-Law Committee
Chair and the Career Center. For more information consult the
College Bulletin, http://www.dickinson.edu/bulletin/.
8) I think I may have a learning disability. Who should
Disability Services at Dickinson College is designed
to assist all students and is especially important for students
with disabilities. Disability Services is locate within the Academic
Advising Office in Biddle House. To find out more information about appropriate
resources, disclosure and documentation of a disability (including
a learning disability) please make an appointment with Jorja Waybrant,
Coordinator of Disbility Services. You may also consult
the Disability Services website at: http://www.dickinson.edu/departments/advising/disabilityservices.html.
9) During the course request period, how are students assigned
After the course request period ends, the computer program registers
students for classes. If more students requested a class than
there are seats in the class, the computer organizes the students
in groups by their priority for the class. For instance, many
introductory science classes give first-year students top priority
and higher level classes give priority to majors. To view priorities
for specific classes, click on “Priorities and Enrollment
Information” either from the course selection menu on Banner
or from course information by semester on the registrar’s
site. If you are not in one of the priorities listed you are in
the lowest priority for that class. The computer fills the class
first from students in the first priority, then the second and
so on. When there are fewer seats left than students in a particular
priority group, the computer randomly selects students from that
group to fill the class. For classes with no priorities listed,
the computer randomly chooses students to fill the class from
among all the students that requested it.
10) How long is add/drop? What about for language classes?
Add/drop period lasts through the first Friday after the beginning
of the semester. Beyond this date, students who wish to make changes
to their schedules must make their request by petitioning the
Committee on Academic Standards. Guidelines for petitioning can
be found on the Advising website. Students who find themselves
at an inappropriate level in language classes are allowed to shift
from one level to another until the posted deadline date (listed
on the Academic Calendar).
11) How do I request a 5th course?
A normal load for a semester is 4 courses. After successfully
completing his or her first semester, a student may take a semester
load of five course credits twice during his or her Dickinson
career. You will need to complete the appropriate form available
in the Registrar’s Office or on their webpage www.dickinson.edu/departments/reg/.
This 5th course cannot be added until the add/drop period at the
beginning of the semester. And most importantly, once
this form is submitted to the Registrar’s Office, it is
officially on your record as one of the two semesters permitted
and cannot be revoked.
12) How do I change a course to pass/fail?
You will need to complete the Pass/Fail Permission Form in the
Registrar’s Office or print from their webpage www.dickinson.edu/departments/reg/
and submit it to the Registrar’s Office no later than the
last day of add/drop.
13) How do I audit a course?
You will need to complete the Audit Permission Form in the Registrar’s
Office or print from their webpage
www.dickinson.edu/departments/reg/ and submit it to the Registrar’s
Office no later than the last day of add/drop. This form can be
submitted any time, but you will not be registered for the audit
until the day after add/drop (remember – it’s added
after add/drop because auditors cannot take a seat away from a
14) What is a program evaluation (degree audit)? Why should
I use this feature?
The degree audit is a very useful tool. If you have not yet declared
a major, and are unsure of what you wish to declare, the degree
audit will tell you how the classes you have taken so far (including
those you are currently enrolled in) at Dickinson fulfill your
distribution requirements necessary for graduation. The degree
audit tells you which distribution requirements remain to be completed
and thus can aid you in planning and scheduling for upcoming semesters.
If you have declared a major or know what you wish to declare,
the Degree Audit reviews the courses you have taken or are enrolled
in and how they apply in helping you fulfill your major requirements.
It will also list the courses that you still need to take in order
to graduate with a degree in a specific major.
Using Banner, you can view your evaluation in terms of what major(s)
you have currently declared (“Generate New Evaluation”)
or what major(s) you might like to declare (“What-If Analysis”).
By showing you what requirements you have left to complete, the
degree evaluation can help you choose more wisely what courses
15) Where can I locate my student ID#?
Your student ID# (begins with a “9”) is on your student
ID card on the front beneath your name and on the back above the
barcode. In addition, you can find it using Banner in many different
ways. It will appear to the left of your name when you access
most non-menu pages. For instance, you can go to Student and Financial
Aid, then to Student Records, then to Student Information and
it will be in the upper right hand corner to the left of your
16) What is roll call? Why do we have it? What should I
do if I have a U grade?
Dickinson College utilizes Roll Call as an opportunity to inform
students of their academic progress mid-way through a semester.
At mid-semester (Roll Call), the following grades are reported
by faculty for all students:
S - Satisfactory achievement (work of "C" quality or
U - Unsatisfactory achievement (work of "C-" or below)
I - Incomplete - work outstanding
NE - No Evaluation made by faculty member
Be sure to check your Roll Call grades via Banner Self-Service.
The big question: What do I do if I have a U grade?
Stop by Biddle House and meet with a Peer Academic Advisor to
get prepared for an appointment with your course professor. Peer
Academic Advisors are available Monday-Friday from 11:00 a.m.
to 4:00 p.m. When you talk to the course professor; ask about
the basis for the grade, whether late work may still be submitted
(even if for a zero grade), and clarify due dates for work yet
to be submitted.
17) When are my grades mailed home?
Grades are not sent home. They can be viewed in Banner which
is accessed through Gateway after the professor submission deadline.
In some cases, some of the grades may appear sooner than others,
indicating that those professors have submitted their grades while
others have not.
18) Can I get a grade lower than a C in courses for my
Yes. Unlike some colleges, at Dickinson, as long as you pass
a course, it can still count toward your major requirements. That
said, you should generally choose a major based on what you both
like and are good at. So if you are struggling in a number of
your major classes, you might want to reconsider your choice of
major. In addition, remember that although your grades for individual
classes may be lower than a C and still count for credit, your
overall GPA may not fall below a certain threshold (1.75 for First-Years
and 2.00 for everyone else). Having a GPA lower than this threshold
will place you on academic probation or require you to withdraw
from the college
19) What is academic probation? Why would I be placed on
it, and what happens when I am on academic probation? What is a
The minimum grade point average for a first-year student to
be in good academic standing is 1.75. At the end of the first
semester of college, students falling below 1.75 will either
be withdrawn from the college or placed on academic probation
for the following semester based on the decision of the Academic
First-year students will be required to complete the Steps to
Academic Success program during the spring semester. At the
end of the second semester of the first year, students with
a cumulative grade point average below 1.75 will be required
to withdraw. Sophomores must achieve a minimum grade point average
Sophomores who have below a 2.00 at the end of the first semester
of the sophomore year will be placed on academic probation for
the second semester and required to complete the Steps to Academic
Success Program. Sophomores whose cumulative grade point average
falls below a 2.00 at the end of the sophomore year will be
required to withdraw.
Juniors and seniors must have a cumulative grade point average
of 2.00 to remain in good academic standing. Juniors and seniors
with a cumulative grade point average below 2.00 will be required
to withdraw from the college. In order to graduate, a senior
must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00.
20) How do I change my advisor?
Normally, a first-year student stays with their Advisor/ Seminar
Instructor until he or she is ready to declare a major. At that
time the Major Declaration Form is completed including selecting
a faculty advisor in the major. If you want to change advisors
before declaring your major, you may ask another faculty member
to serve as your advisor until you are ready to declare a major.
You will have to fill out a “Change of Advisor” form,
and have it signed by your former advisor and the individual agreeing
to serve as your advisor.
21) How do I select a major? Once I have selected a major,
how do I declare it and by when should I have declared?
In order to declare a major, students are required to fill out
the Major Declaration form, obtainable from the Registrar’s
Office and on the Registrar’s Office website. The form also
requires that the student obtain the signatures of the Department
Chairperson, the Major Advisor and their former Advisor. Students
do not have to declare a major until the end of the second semester
of their sophomore year.
22) Do I need to declare a minor? How do I do that?
Declaring a minor is not necessary, except in programs that do
not have majors. Those programs are: astronomy, creative writing,
film studies, education, Italian, and Latin American studies.
To declare the minor you must fill out the appropriate form in
the Registrar’s Office and make your intentions
known to the chair of that program. For minors in other programs
you must take the required courses for the minor and then notify
the Registrar’s Office in your senior year.
23) Can sophomores go abroad?
It is not customary for sophomores to study abroad. In a few
instances, however, a sophomore may be able to participate in
a study abroad program. Other options for sophomores who would
like to do alterative study through Dickinson include a summer
immersion program, Crossing Borders or one of the Mosaic programs.
Check with your advisor for more information.
24) Can seniors go abroad?
Seniors must take six of their last eight (or their last four)
courses on Dickinson’s campus. Exceptions to this policy
must be approved by the Academic Program and Standards Committee.
Therefore, seniors may go abroad during their first semester as
long as they complete four courses at Dickinson in their second
semester before graduating.
25) What happens with credits taken at another institution
while I’m abroad? Do they count towards my GPA? What about
summer school credits at another college or university?
Credits taken abroad need to be pre-approved through Global Education and the department chairs in the subject matter you are going
to be studying. If the program you are enrolled in is a Dickinson
program, you will be told before you go if your grades will count
toward your GPA. If you are going through an affiliate program,
your grades will not figure into your GPA, but you will still
receive credit towards graduation for courses that have been passed.
Study abroad grades will appear on your transcript.
Summer school credits should be pre-approved by the corresponding
Dickinson departments of the course you are taking if you are
taking the courses to fulfill core requirements or courses for
your major. For general credit you must seek approval from the
Registrar’s office. The grades for summer courses at another
college or university will appear on your transcript as with study
abroad courses but are not factored into your GPA. You must earn
a C in each course for the credit to transfer.
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