Academic Policies and Procedures

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  • Academic Advisement

  • Advanced Placement

  • Students with demonstrable equivalencies may, under appropriate circumstances, be exempted from required courses and permitted to take more advanced work. Eligibility for advanced placement may be established on the basis of high school records or by scoring sufficiently well on specialized tests including the Advanced Placement Examination of the College Entrance Examination Board, College Level Examination Program (CLEP) tests, challenge examinations, etc. Students desiring advanced placement are advised to consult with the appropriate department chairperson to determine specific possibilities within their area of competence.
  • Attendance

  • Audit Policy

  • Basic Skills Requirements

  • Cancellation of Courses and Staffing

  • Class Standing

  • Commencement

  • Course Loads

  • Course Overlap

  • Credit by Examination and Assessment of Life Experience

    Montclair State offers the opportunity to all students to earn credit through the College Level Examination Program (CLEP). The Advanced Placement Examination of the College Entrance Examination Board (CEEB), the Thomas A. Edison College Examination Program (TECEP), departmental challenge exams, evaluation of life experience through the American Council on Education (ACE) or Portfolio Assessment of Experiential Learning at Thomas A. Edison State College are also acceptable ways by which credit may be earned.

    The CLEP General Examinations offer entering students the chance to earn up to 24 credits toward the bachelor’s degree. In addition to the general examinations there are also over 30 CLEP subject examinations. The following policies apply regarding the use of credit from CLEP exams toward the degree at Montclair.


    All students are responsible to know and apply the following rules and regulations which govern the application of credit earned through CLEP General and Subject Matter Exams toward the Montclair State degree. It is very important that all students recognize that ACHIEVING THE REQUIRED TEST SCORE DOES NOT NECESSARILY MEAN THAT CREDIT IS APPLICABLE TOWARD MONTCLAIR STATE'S GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS. IN ADDITION, IT IS THE STUDENT’S RESPONSIBILITY TO INSURE THAT HE/SHE IS NOT SEEKING CREDIT FOR A COURSE FOR WHICH PREVIOUS CREDIT WAS GRANTED. Students who fail to adhere to these policies may not be permitted to apply CLEP credit toward the degree regardless of score on the exam.

    CLEP Exams must be taken prior to completion of the student’s first sixty (60) credit hours of undergraduate coursework. Students should not register for courses for which they plan to seek CLEP credit.

    Subject Matter exams, which are taken for possible use in fulfillment of major or collateral requirements, must receive advanced written approval in the form of an Undergraduate Academic Program Adjustment form, which can be obtained in the CLEP Subject Matter exams may not be included within the last 24 credits. (See “residence requirement”)

    Those students seeking credit for ENWR 105 College Writing I: Intellectual Prose via the CLEP General Exam must include the essay with the English test. Please note that the essay is not available at each CLEP administration. Students wishing to use a CLEP General exam to obtain credit for ENWR 105 College Writing I: Intellectual Prose, should receive advanced written approval from the First Year Writing Coordinator. Please see the section entitled “Waivers and Credit Adjustments for First Year Writing”.


    Students receiving six (6) credits in foreign language will be required to complete an additional six (6) credits of foreign language to fulfill the language requirement. Students earning twelve (12) credits will be required to complete either LNGN 220 The Structure of American English, an upper level course in the same language, or a lower level course in a different language.

    Students having questions about these guidelines are encouraged to contact their Academic Advisor before taking any CLEP tests.

    CLEP tests are given at testing sites located throughout the state of New Jersey. For specific information regarding testing sites and CLEP preparation courses, students should contact their Academic Advisor.

    Montclair State offers students the opportunity to take subject matter challenge examinations for many courses. Not all courses are eligible for credit by examination.

    Students, who wish to utilize the evaluating services of Thomas Edison State College (TESC), must make a request to TESC, telephone, 609-292-3400, in their first semester of enrollment at Montclair State University (MSU). This evaluation and a report of credit must be sent to MSU for evaluation. Failure to initiate this process in the first semester may result in the loss of credit. Students should meet with their academic advisor prior to contacting TESC.
  • Dean’s List

  • Final Exams

  • Grades and Standards

  • Graduation/Final Audit

  • Graduation Honors

  • Independent Study

  • Leave of Absence

  • Major Declaration

  • Pass/Fail Grading

  • Plagiarism

  • Prerequisite Courses

  • Registration

    Registration is processed through WESS, the Web Enrollment Services for Students. Specific directions can be found on the online Schedule of Courses Book for each semester.
  • Repeated Courses

  • Residence Requirements

  • Standards for Academic Progress

  • Standards for Formal Written Work

  • Student Responsibility and Rights

  • Transcripts

  • Transfer Credit

    Undergraduate students who would like to take courses at other regionally accredited institutions and transfer the credits to Montclair State University must complete the form “Request for Work at Another Institution” available in the Office of the Registrar prior to enrollment in the course(s) being transferred. Students are strongly encouraged to speak to their advisor before taking courses elsewhere. Once an official transcript is received all accepted credits will be posted, without grades, on the student’s permanent Montclair State University record. Grades earned at other institutions are not included in the Montclair State University cumulative grade point average, and cannot be used to repeat a “D+”, “D”, “D-”, or “F” grade earned at MSU. However, transfer credit hours are used in determining the student’s class level.

    Entering transfer students to MSU will receive an assessment of their transfer credits and how these credits will be used in the accepted or intended program of study. In order to provide an accurate assessment of all transfer credits, students must disclose all previously attended institutions on their transcripts from each institution, Transfer credits from institutions not listed on the application for admission will not be accepted at MSU at any time. It is imperative that students review their transfer credit assessment as soon as it is completed to verify that all of the transfer courses have been evaluated. Courses with grades of “D+”, “D”, or “D-” are accepted only if the transfer student has an A.A. or A.S. degree from a New Jersey community or county college.

    The Freshmen Seminar General Education requirement will be waived for students who enter the University as freshmen transfers with 15 or more awarded credits.
  • Non-Accredited Institutions

    Transfer courses from institutions which are not regionally accredited but are licensed by the state to grant the bachelor's degree or the associate's degree will be posted to a student's MSU record with 0 credits until the following guidelines have been met:

    In the first semester, a full-time student must earn a minimum of 12 semester hours with a minimum grade point average of 2.000.

    A part-time student must earn a minimum of 12 semester hours in the first 14-15 semester hours attempted and with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.000. Students who fail to meet the above stated guidelines will not be able to transfer credits from these institutions and all courses listed with 0 credits will be deleted from the student's MSU record.
  • Undergraduates in Graduate Courses

  • Waivers and Credit Adjustments for First-Year Writing

  • Withdrawal from Courses

  • Withdrawal Procedures from the University