advising terms explained

Advising Terms Explained

Faculty Advisor

An administrator or faculty member that is assigned to you during your first semester. This person helps you stay on track in your academic program. It is important that you meet with your Faculty Advisor regularly. If you don't know who your Faculty advisor is, please check Bannerweb.

Academic literacy

Academic Literacy (AL) is a requirement in Math as prescribed by the Office of Admissions upon acceptance to the University based on test scores (i.e., TAKS, SAT, ACT, testing). A student can challenge their AL requirement by taking the Accuplacer. College level courses in Math cannot be taken until this requirement has been successfully completed with a grade of C or better. The Academic Literacy requirements do not count towards total 120 college credit hours but will counts towards the GPA.

Academic Load

Minimum of 12 semester hours is required for full-time status for Fall or Spring semester. If you are in good academic standing, you may take up to 18 hours. If you are placed on Scholastic Probation you are only allowed to take 12 hours. Full-time status for summer terms is 6 semester hours.


You can drop or add courses after your class schedule is complete. Drop/Add Forms can be found at the University Advising Center (Student Engagement Center, room 3120) and at the Registrar's Office. An advisor and/or an instructor's signature are required on the form. After the official deadline to drop/add courses posted by the Registrar's office, students may be charged a fee.


Policies for individual classes are set by the instructor and posted in the course syllabus. If you are unable to attend a particular class, contact the University Advising Center 210.805.5814 and we will send your instructor(s) an Absence Notification. This will not excuse the absence, and the student must arrange make up work with the instructor.

Financial Assistance and Satisfactory Academic Progress

At the end of each academic year, students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.00 to continue to be eligible to receive financial assistance.


This is an online teaching tool that many professors use to supplement their instruction. Information such as class documents and quizzes may be posted on Blackboard, and you can also submit assignments electronically. In addition, you can send email between Instructors and classmates. Many student organizations use Blackboard to communicate with its members.

Challenge examinations

Challenge examination must be approved by the faculty member and the Academic Dean. Only students enrolled in a degree program can challenge an exam. The fee for taking challenge exams is 40% of the tuition for the course being challenged will be charged.


Students are classified by the number of hours completed:

Classification Semester Hours
Freshmen 1-29 hours
Sophomore 30-59 hours
Junior 60-89 hours
Senior 90 or more hours


The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) provides two types of examinations, General Examinations and Subject Examinations, available in a variety of disciplines. Standards for satisfactory credit are set by University faculty in each discipline area and may be higher than the ACE recommendations. CLEP tests are under constant evaluation and scores are subject to change according to the evaluation period. Students can make arrangements to take a CLEP exam at the Administration Building room 216, ph. (210) 829-3876.

Core Curriculum

The Core Curriculum is the heart and center of the undergraduate educational experience. It is an integrated and sequenced course of study comprising 43 semester hours. The content of the Core is based on the traditional concept of liberal arts education which includes the study of rhetoric (writing and speaking effectively), wellness, philosophy, religion, literature, fine arts, mathematics, natural sciences, history, social science, and a second language.

Dean's List

Admission to the Dean's List is based on achievement during a semester. To qualify a student must be enrolled for at least 12 semester hours, have no IP grades, and have a GPA of 3.5 or above. ELS or Academic Literacy courses do not count towards qualification.


Indicates that the students achievement in the course has been satisfactory, but for some good reason certain prescribed work is incomplete or the student has been unable to take the final examination. On satisfactory completion of the course, the student will receive the grade that the quality of his or her performance merits. If the work is not made up within six months, the IP will revert to a grade of F. The grade of IP will not be computed in the GPA.

Learning Communities

Two or more courses linked together to share common themes to create an interactive learning partnership between the courses. This method allows students to become a sharing academic community; and, along with their instructors, they collaborate and learn together.


Grading choice for students that want to take a class without it affecting their GPA. There is, however, a limit to the number that can be applied to a degree program. Core and major courses cannot be taken pass/fail.


A course or courses that are required before a particular course can be taken. This is particularly true of upper level courses (3000 or 4000).

Scholastic Probation

Students who fail to achieve a 2.00 GPA at semester's end may be placed on scholastic probation. Students on scholastic probation may be limited to take 12 credit hours. See the UIW Undergraduate Bulletin for the details on scholastic probation.

Student Disability Services

In compliance with federal law, the University ensures accessibility to it's programs, services and activities for qualified students with documented disabilities. For more information, contact the Student Disability Services Office, Administration Building, room 51, ph. (210) 829-3997.


Course guideline and requirements as determined by the course instructor. It is very important that students follow their course syllabus throughout the semester.


Students' academic history from admission to graduation. Official transcripts can only be issued by the Registrar. Unofficial transcripts can be accessed via UIW's Bannerweb. 


If you have to withdraw from the University, please contact Ms. Sandy McMakin, Associate Provost of Academic Support Services, 16 Chapel Building, ph. (210) 805-5813.