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Degree Audit Exception Instructions
Penn State Altoona Program Coordinators
According to University Faculty Senate Rules and Policies for Students, 82-60, Exceptions to Degree Requirements, program coordinators may approve exceptions to requirements of the major, subject to the review of the appropriate dean. Requests for extraordinary exceptions to graduation requirements must be submitted to the Senate Subcommittee on Academic Standards of the Senate Committee on Undergraduate Education for approval or disapproval.
Student requests for degree audit exceptions generally fall into one of the following categories:
- Substitution of one Penn State course for another
(Example: Substitute CHEM 011 as a General Education Natural Science)
- Substitution of transfer credits accepted as a specific Penn State course to meet another Penn State requirement
(Example: Substitute 3 transfer credits of SOC 174 as a GS in General Education)
- Substitution of general transfer credits in place of a non-specific Penn State requirement*
(Example: Substitute 3 transfer credits of HIST as a GH in General Education)
- Substitution of general transfer credits in place of a specific Penn State course
(Example: Substitute 4 general transfer credits of STAT to satisfy 4 credits of STAT 200)
- Waiver of any requirement
* Transfer courses cannot be used to satisfy a requirement at the 400-level.
Procedures if exception request is in categories #1, 2, 3 above
- The program coordinator will secure a current real-time degree audit and identify on the audit the course to be substituted and the degree requirement to be satisfied.
- The audit will be signed and dated by the program coordinator and forwarded to the registrar's office for entrance on the degree audit.
- The registrar's office will notify the student and the program coordinator via email of the approved degree audit substitution.
Procedures if exception request is in category #4 above
- The student will consult with his/her academic advisor, complete the official Course Exception Request form, attach the appropriate documentation, and submit it to the program coordinator for consideration.
- If the program coordinator supports the exception request, s/he will sign the form and forward it to the appropriate division staff assistant for routing to a faculty discipline coordinator for review.
- The discipline reviewer will sign the form and return it to the division staff assistant who, in turn, will forward it to the division head of the student’s academic program.
- If approved, the form will be forwarded to the registrar's office for entrance on the degree audit, and the registrar's office will notify the student and the program coordinator via email of the approved degree audit exception.
- If not approved, the division staff assistant will notify the program coordinator who will then notify the student.
- A student seeking a waiver of a degree requirement should prepare a written petition explaining why this degree requirement should be waived. The explanation should provide information as to how the student has met the spirit of the requested waiver in some other fashion. The petition should be prepared no later than the beginning of the proposed semester of graduation and is submitted to the program coordinator for consideration
- If the program coordinator supports the waiver petition, s/he will sign the petition and forward it to the appropriate division head for review.
- If the division head supports the waiver petition, s/he will sign the waiver petition and forward it to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs for review. If the Associate Dean approves the petition, s/he will forward it to the registrar's office for entrance on the degree audit, and the registrar's office will notify the student and the program coordinator via email of the approved degree audit waiver.
- If any of the required signatories declines to support the waiver petition, the student will be informed of the denial. The student requesting the waiver does have the right to request review by the next level of signatory, but Associate Dean serves reviewer at Penn State Altoona.
- Appeals arising from decisions made by the Associate Dean and any requests for extraordinary exceptions to graduation requirements must be submitted to the Subcommittee on Academic Standards of the Senate Committee on Undergraduate Education as a final review board.