Certain majors at Virginia Tech are included in the Academic Common Market (ACM) inventory. Students from participating states who are enrolled in an ACM major may be eligible for the in-state tuition rate, provided the student has applied for, and received, certification through his/her state Academic Common Market coordinator. Students should be aware that eligibility to participate in the ACM program is contingent on continued full-time enrollment and progress toward their approved ACM program. Students who do not maintain full-time enrollment and are not making progress toward their approved ACM program will not receive the in-state tuition rate and may be subject to retroactive charges. For additional information on ACM majors and eligibility, students may contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, the Office of the University Registrar, or visit www.registrar.vt.edu.
Continued enrollment at Virginia Tech is a privilege that is granted as long as the student is making satisfactory progress toward a degree, maintenance of the required minimum grade point average, and compliance with all regulations stipulated in the University Policies on Student Life.
The minimum standard for good standing is eligibility to enroll. The required minimum grade point average is 2.00. Academic probation is imposed when the cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) is less than 2.00; academic probation is lifted when cumulative GPA is at least 2.00. Academic performance will be reviewed at the end of each regular semester (fall and spring).
A student on probation:
First suspension will be imposed whenever one of the following occurs:
First Suspension (Fall): A student who is placed on first academic suspension at the end of fall semester will be suspended from continued enrollment through the end of the following spring semester. Note: Students placed on first academic suspension at the end of fall semester are eligible to return the subsequent first summer, second summer, or fall semester.
First Suspension (Spring): A student who is placed on first academic suspension at the end of spring semester will be suspended from continued enrollment through the end of the following fall semester. Note: students placed on first academic suspension at the end of spring semester may NOT enroll in the immediately following summer session.
A student must earn a minimum 2.00 semester GPA the first semester back and raise the cumulative GPA to at least 2.00 by the end of the second semester back or earn a 2.50 GPA for every semester following the suspension until cumulative GPA is 2.00 or greater. A student will be placed on second academic suspension for failure to meet returning performance requirements.
Second Suspension (Fall): A student who is placed on second academic suspension at the end of fall semester will be suspended from continued enrollment through the end of the following fall semester. Note: students placed on second academic suspension at the end of fall semester may NOT enroll in the immediately following summer session.
Second Suspension (Spring): A student who is placed on second academic suspension at the end of spring semester will be suspended from continued enrollment through the end of the following spring semester. Note: students placed on second academic suspension at the end of spring semester may NOT enroll in the immediately following summer session. The same returning performance requirements apply for second suspension as for first suspension.
Final Suspension: A student will be permanently dismissed for failure to meet returning performance requirements after a second academic suspension.
Virginia Tech is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (1866 Southern Lane, Decatur GA 30033-4097: telephone: 404/679-4501) to award doctoral, master's, bachelor's, and associate's degrees.
Undergraduate students who satisfy graduation requirements for two curricula concurrently may request recognition of the second major on their transcripts; however, only the primary major will appear on the diploma.
Students may earn a second bachelor's degree (and diploma) by earning a minimum of 30 additional credit hours in residence with a minimum 2.0 GPA on all work attempted. All specific requirements must be met for each degree program, including attainment of the 2.0 GPA for all courses in the major. Note: threshold for total number of pass/fail hours allowed is based on minimum hours required for first degree.
All students must apply for a degree during the first semester of their junior year. The application for degree can be found on Hokie SPA under the Degree Menu. Once students have completed the application, they should generate a Degree Audit Report (DARS). The DARS report will help students to be fully aware of all degree requirements which remain to be completed. This report can also be generated through the Hokie Spa.
Traditionally, degrees are conferred upon candidates who are present in person to receive them at the Commencement ceremony in May. Candidates may have their degrees conferred in absentia if they cannot be present at Commencement. To arrange for this, a candidate must indicate to the University Registrar either via Hokie SPA or in writing to be excused from the Commencement ceremony.
In addition to the traditional Commencement, other "Degree Conferral Dates" have been established for each May to May year. These dates (fall, first summer, or second summer) appear on the diplomas of qualified graduates. The degree conferral dates fall on the last day of final examinations (last day of term) for first summer session, second summer session and fall semester. Names of Graduates of Summer and Fall terms will appear in the Fall Commencement Ceremony Program only.
No commencement ceremonies are conducted at the end of the summer sessions, but graduates may attend the fall ceremony after completion of degree requirements. They may also request permission from the department to "walk through" the spring Commencement ceremony based on established departmental or college guidelines. Diplomas are not disbursed.
Completion of degree requirements is determined after the final grade reports are available. Degrees are regarded as having been conferred on the appropriate conferral date upon determination by the University Registrar that degree requirements have been met. All course enrollments and attendance obligations must have been completed on or before the degree conferral date.
With the exception of spring, diplomas for the "Degree Conferral Dates" are ordered after course work completions are established. Diplomas are distributed either by mail or in person to graduates who appear in the Office of the University Registrar, or at the next Commencement ceremony, if available.
The Center for Academic Enrichment and Excellence (CAEE) provides academic support for all undergraduate students at Virginia Tech. Within this mission, CAEE provides:
Through a number of programs, the CAEE offers free academic support services to students who want to improve their academic skills, who are excelling and want to enrich their educational experiences, and who are making the transition from high school to college. The CAEE also provides student employment opportunities.
The professionals in the Center for Academic Enrichment and Excellence are committed to helping students succeed. Come visit us in 122 Hillcrest Hall (231-4133) or 110 Femoyer Hall (231-5499) to see what we have to offer. Visit our website (www.caee.vt.edu) for additional information and to see a schedule of our events.
The bachelor's degree will be awarded to a student who has satisfactorily completed three years of undergraduate work in an appropriate curriculum and the first year of work in an accredited medical, dental, veterinary, or law school, or medical technology program (biology majors only), or physical therapy program (biology majors only), provided the student fulfills the requirements for the three-year program as follows:
Virginia Tech offers four-year degree programs leading to a bachelor of arts, science, or fine arts degree. Also offered are five-year bachelor of architecture and bachelor of landscape architecture programs. Virginia Tech also offers graduate work in 63 fields of study leading to master's degrees and in 51 fields leading to the doctorate. The professional doctor of veterinary medicine is offered through the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, located at Virginia Tech.
Virginia Tech sponsors a wide diversity of education abroad programs to provide opportunities for intercultural experiences that are important in all disciplines.
The university's Center for European Studies and Architecture, in Switzerland, provides a unique place for undergraduate students to see and experience what they study. The facility offers a broad program in core curriculum courses and specialized programs in architecture and in business. Students study for one semester in the university's center in the small town of Riva San Vitale, Switzerland, and make field trips to other European sites to complement their classroom studies.
Other semester/academic year programs are conducted through Tech's academic departments and other study abroad providers with over 100 universities in 40 different countries. Some of the more popular locations are Australia, France, Italy, Germany, Ecuador, and the United Kingdom, to name a few. In addition, many VT students participating in Education Abroad programs pay the same tuition and fees that they would pay for a regular term at VT.
Virginia Tech's summer faculty-led programs enroll the greatest number of students. Tech has summer options in more than 25 countries, ranging from Australia to South Africa, and lasting 2-6 weeks. A Virginia Tech faculty member runs each program, and students will be enrolled in Tech courses.
Students who plan to study abroad should discuss the transfer of credits earned with their academic dean prior to leaving the Virginia Tech campus. All credits to be transferred to this university for use toward degree completion should be approved before they are taken. This is particularly true of courses completed in foreign universities for which there is no Virginia Tech equivalent.
Most forms of financial aid may also be applied to education abroad programs, and there are several scholarships and grants available. We encourage students to contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid as soon as they consider studying abroad.
For more information about study abroad opportunities, contact the Education Abroad Office in 1830 Litton Reaves Hall (540-231-5888), or visit this website: http://www.oired.vt.edu.
Virginia Tech offers several types of courses that can be tailored to the needs of individual students or specific groups of students. Students develop a plan of work to reach particular objectives, obtain approval of both the department and a faculty member who will supervise the work, and work with them to arrange hours and credits.
By allowing students to pursue topics in which formal courses are not available, these programs provide greater academic flexibility for undergraduate students at Virginia Tech. They also provide students an opportunity to assume a greater share of the responsibility for their own education, outside the traditional classroom environment.
Students must submit an official approval form prior to registration. In most cases, the student's first contact for an independent study, field study, or undergraduate research course is the department offering the course. Registration is through the student's dean's office. Special study courses are set up by the department, and the student registers through web course request. Some colleges and departments have restrictions on eligibility to register for these courses, and limit the number of hours that can be used toward graduation.
Field Study (X964) courses are work experiences approved by some departments and are selected to augment traditional classroom activities. The student is evaluated on the knowledge and skills acquired as a result of the experience. Emphasis is placed on the academic and practical value of the work.
Independent Study (X974) courses generally involve extensive reading and tutorial sessions with the faculty supervisor and also may involve written papers. The subject of Independent Study usually is a continuation in greater depth of a topic covered in a regular course, allowing students to study topics of particular individual interest.
Special Study (X984) courses are designed for a group of students, rather than for a single individual. This type of course may be used to study a timely topic, one in which there is current, but not necessarily lasting, interest. It also may be used to launch an experimental course before the course is incorporated into the regular curriculum.
Undergraduate Research (X994) courses are individual research projects carried out by students under faculty supervision. The student defines the research topic, proposes a methodology, carries out the research, and writes a report.
A student must complete all courses with at least a minimum 2.0 GPA for all hours attempted. In addition, a student must present an equally satisfactory record in courses attempted in the major and/or any minor. The number of credit hours required varies from one major curriculum to another. Virginia Tech reserves the right to modify requirements in the student's program if necessary. The approved requirements in effect for a student's graduation in a given calendar year apply. Said requirements must be approved two years prior to their effective graduation date. All students earning degrees from Virginia Tech must have earned a minimum of one-fourth of the credit for their respective degrees from this institution. The senior year, with a minimum of 27 hours, must be completed in residence, or 27 of the last 45 hours must be completed in residence, provided that only approved courses taken in absentia are transferred to complete requirements.
Language Study Requirement
By the time they graduate from the university, students must meet a language study requirement. The minimum requirement may be met in high school by completing 2 units of a single foreign or classical language. Some majors in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences may require 3 units. The requirement also may be met after admission by one of the following:
The Virginia Tech Honor Code is the university policy that defines the expected standards of conduct in academic affairs. The Honor System is the university student body charged with disseminating information about the Honor Code to the university community and enforcing the Honor Code.
Violations of the Honor Code in academic affairs include, but are not limited to, the following:
A student who has doubts about how the Honor Code applies to any graded assignment is responsible for obtaining specific guidance from the instructor before submitting the assignment for evaluation. Any student accused of an alleged violation of the Honor Code is guaranteed certain basic rights, including being considered innocent until proven guilty. The complete "Constitution of the Honor System" is available from the Honor System Office (333 Squires Student Center) and is posted on the Virginia Tech home page at www.honorsystem.vt.edu.
The university maintains an office for Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental Advising, located in Hillcrest Hall. The office functions within the Honors Program, but enrollment in the Honors Program is not a prerequisite for consultation with Pre-Medical/Dental advising services.
It should be noted that although the majority of pre-medical and pre-dental students major in a science, any major is acceptable to medical and dental schools so long as certain specific admission requirements are satisfied. Thus pre-medicine is an interest rather than a degree program. Medical schools encourage students interested in medicine to pursue broad undergraduate study in the humanities and social sciences as well as biology and the natural sciences. The national standardized Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) emphasizes facility with scientific problem-solving, critical-thinking and writing skills as well as mastery of basic biology, chemistry and physics concepts. Additional requirements include significant participation in volunteer health care activities, letters of evaluation, and an interview at the medical school. Successful candidates exhibit high levels of scholastic achievement and intellectual potential as well as motivation and humanistic concern.
The Pre-Medical/Dental Advising office provides direct counseling and assistance to students about careers in medicine or dentistry, preparing for application to medical or dental school, and the admission process. A course, "Careers in Medicine," is available to students at the sophomore and higher level. After gaining individual volunteer experience, a limited number of students may be placed with local physicians for a one-semester two-credit preceptorship. Upon request, this office will also provide interviews and letters of evaluation.
Core course requirements vary somewhat among the 125 accredited United States medical schools, but most require 2 semesters each of mathematics, English, biology (with lab), general chemistry (with lab), organic chemistry (with lab), and general physics (with lab). The MCAT is also required at most medical schools. Specific entrance requirements are listed in the book Medical School Admission Requirements: United States and Canada.
The general requirements for most dental schools are the same as those listed above for medical school. The standardized Dental Admission Test (DAT) is required by most dental schools.
The Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech now accepts 50 Virginia and 30 Maryland residents, and up to 10 at-large applicants. Specific admission requirements are discussed in the Veterinary Medicine section. Counseling sessions are available by appointment only; please call 540/231-4699 for scheduled times. For information about other veterinary medicine schools' admission requirements, students should consult the latest edition of Veterinary Medical School Admission Requirements in the United States and Canada.
Law students and lawyers come from many undergraduate backgrounds, and the skills necessary to succeed in law school and as an attorney can be developed in a variety of courses across a range of disciplines. Law schools do not treat any specific course or major as a prerequisite for admission, nor do they look with special favor on applicants who have graduated from a formal "pre-law" program. Accordingly, Virginia Tech does not offer a formal pre-law major. The university does offer a top-quality education in a large number of fields, as well as counseling about law as a career, preparing for and applying to law schools, and the law school admission process. Students are encouraged to maintain contact with the University pre-law advisors, the Office of Career Services, and others on campus with information about legal careers.
For further information on pre-law studies at Virginia Tech, including how to contact the University pre-law advisors, see the following website: http://www.psci.vt.edu/prelaw/index.html.
Students should be aware that there are some academic majors and programs within the university that have strict entrance requirements or are in such high demand that they cannot accommodate all who wish to enter them. Administrators of these restricted programs must be selective in allowing students to transfer in from other majors within the university and in permitting second majors or minors. Students seeking entrance into such restricted programs should consult the appropriate department.
Restricted programs for internal transfers are as follows:
Undergraduate students must be enrolled in their major(s) [and minor(s)] of choice prior to the beginning of their senior year, or by the time they have 30 semester hours to complete before their graduation. Students seeking double majors must be accepted into the second major by the academic department before the university can award the second major.
Changes from one degree program to another (i.e., changes in major) or the addition of a second major or a minor usually can be accomplished at any time prior to the senior year, simply by working with one's academic advisor and informing the head(s) of the department(s) and the dean(s) of the college(s) in question. A major (or second major) cannot be selected after the beginning of the senior year. (See section above on Selecting a Major.)
Minors are offered by many academic departments. Refer to the section on Graduation Requirements and Degrees and to the appropriate academic department in the college chapters of this catalog to review the requirements for a minor.
Students should be aware that changes in their, such as changing or adding majors or minors, sometimes imply extra course work, which can delay graduation.
Twenty-five percent of the student's total hours must be taken at Virginia Tech.
Procedures to Follow When Changing or Adding a Major or Minor
Students should submit their applications for changing majors or adding minors two weeks prior to the start of each semester's registration period. This will allow students adequate time to assess their situations before deciding to transfer and registering for the following term.
The procedure for changing majors or adding a minor is as follows:
The regular academic year at Virginia Tech is divided into two semesters, fall and spring. Virginia Tech also offers two summer sessions. Most courses of study require eight (8) terms (i.e., semesters and/or summer sessions) for completion of the bachelor's degree requirements. Completion of the degree requirements for those students who enroll in the Cooperative Education Program, Bachelor of Architecture Program, or Bachelor of Landscape Architecture Program requires five years.
Elective courses are chosen through consultation with the student's advisor. The dean of the college in which a student is registered has authority in such matters as substitution of courses, dropping and adding courses after deadlines, or permission to take an overload.
Students have the assistance of faculty guidance, introductory courses, and special counseling to help them choose wisely which course of study they should take. Every effort is made to assure that all courses listed under the various department of instruction will be offered. Virginia Tech reserves the right, however, to withdraw any course for which an adequate number of students do not enroll.
It is the student's responsibility to satisfy all course requirements as established by the faculty teaching the courses in which s/he is enrolled. It is also the student's responsibility to be aware of all major, degree, college, and graduation requirements necessary to complete his or her. Students are also responsible for satisfying all university, college, and departmental requirements for progress towards degree. (See this chapter for university requirements; consult the departmental listings in this catalog for major requirements.)
Students are responsible for keeping and being familiar with their own records and for the accuracy of these records.
A student's failure to keep his/her address updated does not absolve the student of responsibility for matters which require notification by the university. Changes to your local address, permanent address, or parent/guardian address should be promptly updated by accessing Hokie SPA. Correct dorm addresses are established through the Student Housing Office in Eggleston Hall. If you are not sure what addresses are on file, you may check Hokie SPA for verification.
It is the student's responsibility to check his/her current schedule of classes by accessing Hokie SPA. Errors must be corrected by the established deadline stated in the Timetable of Classes. Request for course(s) will result in a responsibility for payment of tuition and fees. It is the students responsibility to complete and return the Withdrawal/Resignation form by established term deadlines if choosing to disenroll for a given term.
Students are responsible for seeing their advisors during course request week so as to assure appropriate curricula planning.
Virginia Tech offers teacher education leading to endorsement in 30 fields of study. All teacher preparation programs are at the graduate level. Students seeking a teaching license should consult the Graduate Catalog (http://www.vt.edu/academics/gcat/index.html) and the School of Education (http://www.soe.vt.edu/programs.htm) website for details on specific programs of interest.
The School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (http://www.ncate.org/public/stateInstit.asp?ch=106&state=VA), and all programs are recognized by their national specialized professional associations and approved by the Virginia Board of Education. Graduates may qualify, through reciprocity agreements with Virginia, for a teaching license or endorsements in many other states (http://www.soe.vt.edu/teachered/teacher_ed1/licen_prgms.html).
Students currently in undergraduate teacher preparation programs must complete licensure requirements as scheduled by their specific programs. No new students are being admitted to any teacher education programs at the undergraduate level. Undergraduate teacher education courses will continue to be offered through the closure date for each program; thereafter, only graduate education programs will be offered in the School of Education.
Undergraduate students who anticipate applying for a masters degree in teacher education should consult an advisor in the Office of Academic Programs (firstname.lastname@example.org) or with the academic advisor in their undergraduate major. Decisions about entering graduate programs in teacher education should be made early in the undergraduate years so that an appropriate major (http://www.soe.vt.edu/teachered/what_major.html) can be selected prior to applying for a teacher education program. Seniors with a GPA of 3.0 or better may dual enroll (http://www.vt.edu/academics/gcat/gcaPolicies.html) in their last semester to take graduate-level education courses. Credits earned under dual enrollment may be applied to licensure or degree requirements with the permission of the graduate advisory committee.
Applicants for teacher education programs must submit passing scores on PRAXIS I: Academic Skills Assessments or acceptable scores on the SAT or ACT prior to acceptance into the School of Education (http://www.pen.k12.va.us/VDOE/newvdoe/praxis.pdf). Passing scores on relevant PRAXIS II: Specialty Area Tests and the Virginia Reading Assessment (for reading specialists and primary, elementary, and special education teachers) (http://www.pen.k12.va.us/VDOE/newvdoe/praxis.pdf) are required prior to receiving a teaching license. A criminal record check is required by school divisions in Virginia prior to employment (http://www.pen.k12.va.us/VDOE/suptsmemos/2001/inf115.html).
Notable features of the teacher education program at Virginia Tech are:
Undergraduate courses of study leading to bachelor's degrees at Virginia Tech are listed below. In addition, many options and specialties pertaining to each academic college are described in the individual college chapters in this catalog.