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Policies & Procedures

Undergraduate Policies

Undergraduate Policies & Procedures

The following policies are specific to SPEA-Indianapolis, though some may also be consistent with SPEA school policy. For a list of all SPEA school policies, please visit the SPEA School Bulletin.

Academic Standing

Good Standing Students are in good academic standing when their semester and cumulative grade point averages are 2.0 or above, and their GPA in all courses included in the SPEA major requirements is at least 2.3. Students must be in good academic standing to graduate.

Academic Warning

  1. Students will receive a formal academic warning from Student Services when any individual semester GPA falls below a 2.0 but their cumulative GPA remains above a 2.0. 
  2. Students will receive formal academic warning from Student Services when they are not making satisfactory progress toward graduation, including when they are at risk of not satisfying the SPEA graduation GPA requirement of 2.3.
  3. Students who receive an academic warning will need to meet with an advisor prior to course registration.  


  1. Students whose Indiana University cumulative grade point average (GPA) falls below a 2.0 will be placed on probation. Students will be informed of the probationary status by letter.
  2. Students may be continued on probation when the semester GPA is at least a 2.0 but the Indiana University cumulative GPA is below a 2.0.
  3. Students will be removed from probationary status once the Indiana University cumulative GPA is at least 2.0.


  1. Students on probation who have completed a minimum of 12 IUPUI GPA hours are subject to dismissal if they fail to attain a GPA of at least 2.0 in any two consecutive semesters (fall and spring) and the Indiana University cumulative GPA is below 2.0.
  2. Students who are dismissed for the first time cannot enroll until one regular (fall or spring) semester has elapsed since dismissal and must petition by the established deadlines to be reinstated.
  3. Students dismissed two or more times must remain out of school for the next two consecutive regular (fall and spring) semesters and petition by the established deadlines to be reinstated.


  1. Reinstatement will be the decision of the academic unit to which the students are petitioning.
  2. Students who are reinstated will be classified as probationary students until the Indiana University cumulative GPA is at least 2.0. During the first regularly enrolled term on probation, the student must achieve a semester GPA of at least 2.3. In each subsequent semester on probation, the student must achieve a semester GPA of at least 2.0. Failure to meet the semester GPA requirement while on probation will result in dismissal.
  3. Reinstatement after a second dismissal is extremely rare.
  4. Student’s chances of reinstatement will be enhanced by taking workshops, removing grades of incomplete, undertaking assessment of their academic problems, and providing evidence of their ability to complete successful academic work upon their reinstatement to IUPUI.

Academic Integrity This is a basic principle of intellectual life that holds students responsible for taking credit only for ideas and efforts that are their own. Academic dishonesty violates that principle and undermines the bonds of trust and cooperation among members of the university community, and it is not tolerated. Academic misconduct includes cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, interference, violation of course rules, and facilitating academic dishonesty. Students are responsible for knowing what behaviors and activities constitute these different forms of academic misconduct. Penalties and procedures that are applicable when academic misconduct or dishonesty occurs are described in the IUPUI Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Conduct.

Acceptance of Grade Replacement  SPEA students may replace any grade in a course by retaking it a second time. Students may replace a total of 15 credit hours. Additional information about the IUPUI Grade Replacement Policy can be found on the Registrar's page. Students interested in using this option should talk to their academic advisor to complete the necessary paperwork.

Application for Graduation  All students must fill out an application for graduation on their campus. This application should be completed by October 15 for those intending to graduate in May, by January 15 for August graduates, and by May 15 for December graduates. The SPEA graduation application is found online or by visiting SPEA Student Services.

Bulletin Policy Students are expected to complete the requirements for their undergraduate degree within 10 years of admission to the School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Students are allowed to continue beyond this time period only at the discretion of the undergraduate program director or campus director. If a student has not taken classes for three years or more, that student must satisfy program requirements of the School of Public and Environmental Affairs in effect at the time of reactivation. Requests for deviation from requirements listed in the bulletin must be approved in writing by the program director, whose decision is final.

Dean's List The SPEA Dean's List is calculated after every fall and spring semester. To qualify, a student must complete 6 IUPUI credit hours with a semester GPA of 3.50 or higher.

Degrees Awarded with Distinction SPEA recognizes outstanding performance by awarding bachelor's and associate degrees with three levels of distinction to students who rank in the upper 10 percent of their SPEA graduating class and have completed a minimum of 60 hours at Indiana University for a B.S. (30 hours for an A.S.). The levels of distinction are as follows: highest distinction, 3.90 and above; high distinction, 3.70 through 3.89; distinction, 3.50 through 3.69.

Double Counting Generally, courses taken to meet a specific degree requirement cannot be double-counted (i.e., used to satisfy any other degree requirement). Students earning a SPEA major, minor, or certificate may double-count two courses across any allowable combination of these programs. The following restrictions apply: 1) students are limited to two minors and 2) SPEA students may not earn a certificate or minor in the same area as their major.

Forgiveness Policy This policy applies to former IU students pursuing a first undergraduate degree who have been away from the IU system and have not attended any other college or university, including any campus of IU, for the last five years. This policy first became available to students returning to SPEA in the fall of 1996. Students may apply for forgiveness upon application for admission to a degree-granting unit. If the student has not yet been admitted to a degree-granting unit, the student should submit a notification of intent to petition for academic forgiveness as part of the academic advising process. If the petition is approved, the student starts with a fresh cumulative grade point index, after which all the rules of academic probation and dismissal (for SPEA) will apply. The school will evaluate the student's transcript, and all courses taken previously will remain on the permanent record. Only credit hours for courses with grades C or above, P, or S may be counted toward degree completion. After approval, the student must complete a minimum of 32 credit hours on the IUPUI campus in order to meet the graduation residency requirement.

Grade Appeals Students have 90 days after the conclusion of a course to appeal a grade. Resolution of the issue with the class instructor must be attempted before submitting a written appeal to the appropriate program director.

Grade Point Average Requirement A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 is required for the B.S. degrees. In addition, a SPEA major GPA of 2.3 must be maintained in order to graduate. For students seeking certificates from SPEA, the minimum cumulative GPA requirement is a 2.0 or higher, and for students pursuing a minor the minimum cumulative GPA is a 2.3 or higher in all applicable course work.

Grading Policies SPEA follows the official grading system of Indiana University, described in the introductory section of the bulletin.

Hours Requirements Students must successfully complete a minimum of 120 credit hours. Students may transfer no more than 90 credit hours (60 credits from a junior college) toward a Bachelor of Science degree. Class standing, based on total credit hours that count toward minimum degree requirements, is as follows: senior, 86 or more; junior, 56-85; sophomore, 26-55; freshman, fewer than 26.

On the Indianapolis campus, no more than 50 percent of courses taken to satisfy the requirements of the Criminal Justice and Public Safety Managemant majors may be transfer courses from other accredited institutions of higher learning, including all IU campuses (this policy is specific to the program requirements of the major).

Incomplete Policy  A grade of Incomplete can only be given to a student facing a hardship such that it would be unjust to hold the student to the established time limits for completing the work.  To be eligible for the incomplete in a SPEA course, the student's work must be of passing quality, and the student must have completed 75% of the course requirements.  The incomplete must be removed within the time specified by the instructor of the course; if not, the grade automatically changes to an F one calendar year after the Incomplete was given.

Independent Study credits With prior approval, a student may take three courses totaling no more than 10 credit hours by correspondence through the IU Division of Extended Studies, Independent Study Program. Under no circumstances may a student satisfy a core/major/concentration requirement by correspondence.

Internship credits With SPEA faculty approval, a student in good standing may earn a maximum of 9 credit hours of elective credit through the SPEA internship program. The SPEA internship program is described here.

Other academic programs SPEA students may choose to pursue a minor or certificate from another school or department or within SPEA in an area other than their degree or major/concentration. Students interested in a minor should contact that department for additional information.

Pass/Fail credit A student in good academic standing may choose to take a maximum of eight elective courses (two per academic year) Pass/Fail for a B.S. degree or two courses for an A.S. degree. Deadlines for exercising this option are published on the Registrar's website.

Repeat Rule SPEA students who repeat a course and do not exercise their right to grade replacement will have only the best attempt count in their program GPA (SPEA GPA), though only one of the repeated courses will count toward graduation hours, and both grades will be reflected in overall cumulative GPA. There are some courses that are an exception to this policy such as SPEA J380/V380.

Requirements for a second bachelor's degree Students must petition for approval to work toward a second bachelor's degree. If permission is granted, students are required to take 30 credit hours beyond the credits used for the first bachelor's degree and to satisfy all the requirements for the second degree. Generally, SPEA encourages students to work toward a graduate degree or graduate certificate rather than a second bachelor's degree.

Sex Offenders Screening Policy for Students/Applicants Indianapolis applicants should be aware that criminal convictions may result in ineligibility for participation in certain courses/activities within the School of Public and Environmental Affairs. Questions regarding school policy on such matters should be addressed to the appropriate program director.

Statement on Civility SPEA, which is a professional school, expects students to conduct themselves in a courteous and civil manner in interactions with professors, staff and fellow students. Examples of discourteous behavior during class include reading the newspaper, working crossword puzzles, listening to headphones, using computers to surf the Web or for other non-class activities, talking or laughing with others, arriving late, and so forth. These behaviors are distracting to the instructor and to classmates, and SPEA faculty and staff will address these problems as they arise either in class or on an individual basis. Disorderly conduct that interferes with teaching, research, administration, or other university or university-authorized activity will not be tolerated, and it may result in disciplinary action, including possible suspension and/or expulsion from the university.

Student Rights and Responsibilities  SPEA IUPUI fully supports the rights and responsibilities of students as defined in the IUPUI Code of Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Conduct. The Student Codespells out the expectations for faculty and students, and it provides the framework for SPEA's judicial process. 

A student is entitled to rights in the pursuit of his or her education; freedom from discrimination and harassment; and freedom of association, expression, advocacy, and publication. A student also has the right to contribute to university governance, to receive accommodations for disabilities, and to access records and facilities. In accordance with federal law, student records are confidential and are available to other persons only under specific conditions as outlined in university regulations.

A student is responsible for upholding and following all applicable codes of conduct, including the IUPUI Student Code and SPEA's policy on classroom etiquette and disorderly conduct, and for obeying all applicable policies and procedures and all local, state, and federal laws. A student is responsible for facilitating the learning process, attending class regularly, completing class assignments, and coming to class prepared. In addition, a student is responsible for planning his or her own academic program, planning class schedules, and for meeting the requirements for his or her degree or certificate programs. Faculty and academic advisors are available to assist students in meeting this responsibility. A student is responsible for maintaining and regularly monitoring his or her university accounts, including e-mail and bursar accounts. A student is responsible for using university property and facilities in the pursuit of his or her education, while being mindful of the rights of others to do the same. A student is responsible for upholding and maintaining academic and professional honesty and integrity.

Transfer Course Policy (also stated in Hours Requirement) Students may transfer no more than 90 credit hours (60 credits from a junior college) toward a Bachelor of Science degree.

On the Indianapolis campus, no more than 50 percent of courses taken to satisfy the requirements of the Criminal Justice and Public Safety Management majors may be transfer courses from other accredited institutions of higher learning, including all IU campuses (this policy is specific to the program requirements of the major).