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Academic Policies and Standards Committee (ACPOL)

About the ACPOL Committee       
The Academic Policies and Standards Committee (ACPOL) acts on behalf of the faculty to hear appeals from students who wish to waive/amend graduation/degree requirements, academic probation/standards, or other policies delineated in the Catawba Catalog. The policies in question are those described in the "Academic Policies, Procedures, and Terminology" section of the Catalog, and include requests to be readmitted after withdrawal, appeal a suspension, waive the senior residency requirement stating that all coursework must be completed at Catawba after a student earns 90 sh, waive the restrictions of probation, take a tutorial, and other policies. The ACPOL also oversees the Institutional Review Board (IRB), which reviews requests for research involving human participants. IRB policies are  described under "faculty policies and procedures," and the Chair of  the IRB for 2013-14 is Professor Dayna Anderson.

 

Petitioning the Committee   
The process for petitioning the Committee for a waiver of the rules delineated in the Catalog is as follows:

  1. Discuss your situation with your advisor and the Chair of your Department (unless they are the same person);

  2. Have your advisor prepare and send a letter describing whether sh/e supports your petition;

  3. Have the Department Chair prepare and send a letter indicating that sh/e knows that the petition is being made (any commentary about support of the petition is at the discretion of the Department Chair);

  4. Prepare and send a letter of petition to the ACPOL (see below). Only when ACPOL receives all three letters (two if the Chair and advisor are the same person) will the Committee consider the request.

  5. Once all letters are received and the Committee has met (typically the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Tuesday of the month) and discussed your petition, you can expect a response to your request via electronic mail. The Committee will consider appeals only intermittently during the summer and winter terms.

         
Preparing and sending letters:
Students should use the model letter given on the next page and submit the letter in an e-mail or in an MS Word file attachment to acpol@catawba.edu.

Electronic letters attached with documents in other formats will not be opened.

The subject line should read "ACPOL — your last name"

Follow precisely the format given below. ACPOL will not consider requests that do not have sufficient information. The advisor and Chair should also send their letters via MS attachment or in an e-mail.

 
Committee consideration of petition:
The ACPOL will consider rationale for requests to waive requirements according to the following criteria:

  1. That the request is based upon action taken the College or one of its representatives, such as having a required class cancelled or removed from the curriculum, or an advisor error that is explained in the letter by the petitioner's advisor;
  2. That the request is based on some action by an agency outside the College, such as the State or Federal government if a student is deployed by the military or National Guard;
  3. That the request is based upon need (such as when a course is needed to complete requirements) rather than optional choice (such as when a choice is an elective);
  4. That the request is for a personal convenience or circumstance.

         
Decision:

A letter indicating the ACPOL's decision will be sent to your campus e-mail address, with a copy sent to the advisor and Dept Chair. Regularly check your mail for the letter; letters returned because e-mail boxes are too full will not be resent.

SAMPLE LETTER

Student name            
Student campus box or home address            
Student reachable phone number            
Student e-mail address

Academic Policies and Standards Committee (ACPOL) Campus Mail Date
Dear Members of the Academic Policies and Standards Committee (ACPOL),

Introduce yourself by name, provide your academic status, major, advisor, and GPA.

I respectfully request ACPOL grant me an exception for: Describe the exception you to the College rule/regulation.

My reason for this request: Provide the rationale for your request, focusing on the circumstances that have led you to petition the Committee for a waiver to the College graduation policies.

Thank the Committee in advance for its consideration of the request.

Signature