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Academic Regulations


Attendance Grades & Standards Repeated Courses
Auditing Courses Graduate Thesis/Thesis Extension Standards for Academic Progress
Cancellation of Course & Staffing Graduate Credit Course-Undergraduates Student Course Load
Course Overlap Independent Study Student Responsibility
Credit Hours Pass-Fail Grading Policy Withholding of Student Records
Enrollment Verification Prerequisite Courses


Students are expected to fulfill all course requirements and although attendance is not always mandatory, it is desirable. Absence from laboratory or studio sessions shall be by agreement with the instructor. Instructors should notify the students in writing of the attendance requirements for each course. Professors may penalize the students for failure to meet the specific attendance requirements. Students who register are considered enrolled in their course(s) regardless of attendance. Refunds will only be processed, according to the deadlines published in each semester’s Schedule of Courses book. Students not following this procedure will be charged for all course(s) in which they are registered.

  • Lack of attendance does not constitute a basis for a refund or withdrawal from a course(s).
  • No student should be attending a course for which they are not registered

Auditing Courses

To “audit” a course is to attend class regularly, without the obligation of participating in class discussions, laboratory work, examinations, performances, or any class activity other than listening. Students that audit a class will be billed the required tuition and fees. They are not eligible for any type of Financial Aid. Any student electing the audit option must complete an Audit Application and return it to the Office of the Registrar prior to the end of the third week of the semester for regularly scheduled courses or its equivalent for short term courses and other courses that meet less than full term. Audit Applications are available on the Forms page.

Deadline for filing an Audit Application can be found on the Important Dates page.

Cancellation of Course & Staffing

The University reserves the right to cancel any course for which the enrollment is insufficient. Students may register without penalty for another course of equal credit or receive a full refund of tuition and fees. The University also reserves the right to change faculty assignments, and therefore cannot guarantee students the faculty of their choice.

Course Overlap

Course registration overlaps may be permitted with written approval of the instructors of both courses as well as the approval of the Dean(s) and Chairperson(s) responsible for the instructional areas. Students must submit written approval to Red Hawk Central in order to register for overlapping courses; the student or his/her representative must do this in person. Course overlap forms are available on the Forms page.

Credit Hours

Montclair State University defines all on-line courses or any on-line portion of a hybrid course to be taught from the main campus.

Academic credits are awarded on the semester hour (S.H.) basis. One semester hour, usually representing 50 minutes of class activity per week for 15 weeks, is equal to one (1) credit. Semester credit hour may also be defined as 150 minutes of academic work each week for 15 weeks in one semester, which is typically accomplished by 50 minutes of face-to-face class activity each week complemented by at least 100 minutes each week of laboratory or outside assignments (or the equivalent thereof for semesters of different length). It may also be accomplished through an equivalent amount of academic work which may include additional class time, laboratory work, internships, practical studio work, and other forms of academic work.

The departments of Art and Design, Theatre and Dance, and Music adhere to the following formulas for determining course credit hours in conjunction with their discipline-specific accrediting bodies.

Enrollment Verification

Students may request an Enrollment Certification through their NEST account. Students who have graduated may request a copy of their official transcript.

Graduate – Thesis/Thesis Extension

Graduate Credit Course – Undergraduates

Montclair State seniors who have completed 105 semester hours of the bachelor’s degree requirements, who possess at least a 3.00 grade point average and have taken all required prerequisites, may apply to take up to 6 hours of 500 level courses for either undergraduate or graduate credit. A graduate course taken for undergraduate credit cannot later be included in a graduate degree program. If courses are taken for graduate credit, graduate tuition and fees will be charged. Appropriate forms are available online on the Graduate website and must be submitted in person in the Graduate Office by the student or his/her representative. Admission of an undergraduate to a course that yields graduate credit does not imply future acceptance into any graduate program. That can only be done by a separate admissions process. Those planning to matriculate in graduate programs at the University should refer to the Graduate School website for specific admission requirements.

Graduation Honors

Undergraduate students who have completed a minimum of 51 undergraduate credits taken at Montclair State by the end of the semester prior to their commencement will be recognized for graduation honors. Grades received in classes taken at another institution will not be factored into calculations for Graduation Honors.

School of Nursing students who have completed a minimum of 32 undergraduate credits at Montclair State by the end of the semester prior to their commencement are recognized for graduation honors.

Grades of “A” through “D-” must be received for a minimum of 48 of these 51 credits.

Independent Study

Montclair State University offers opportunities for students to undertake academic credit on an independent study basis.

  • Undergraduate Students may request to take a course as an independent study by logging into their NEST account under “Personal Information” and then “Managing your record.”

Pass-Fail Grading Policy

Pass-Fail Grading Policy is available on the Policies website.

Prerequisite Courses

IT IS THE STUDENT’S RESPONSIBILITY to satisfactorily complete a prerequisite course before scheduling a dependent course. Students will not be permitted to register for a course for which the prerequisite has not been met.

Repeated Courses

Undergraduate Students

To potentially improve a course grade, undergraduate students who earn an F, D-, D, D+ or WD in a course are permitted to repeat the course once, for a maximum of two attempts. Courses in which a student earned a grade of C- or higher may not be repeated, unless specifically outlined in official, approved curriculum requirements (e.g., specific teacher education certification requirements). The Dean of the College or School where the course is housed has the discretion to approve additional course repeats and/or a grade related repeat of a course only under limited special and appropriately documented extenuating circumstances.

When a course has been repeated, both the original and the subsequent grade are included on the permanent record, but the credit for the course is counted only once. The highest grade earned will be recorded as the official final grade for the course, and will be the grade that is counted in the student’s GPA.

If a course is no longer offered, the Dean of the College or School, upon request of the Chair of the Department offering the original course, reserves the right to approve an alternate course for repeat. If approved, the alternate course will act as an exact repeat with respect to all other aspects of the current course repeat policy.

In rare instances, a student may repeat a course by completing its equivalent at another institution. In these cases, the grade earned at the other institution will not be factored into the Montclair State University grade point average, and may not satisfy grade-based prerequisite requirements. Students are required to consult with their advisor before repeating courses at other institutions. The student will be awarded credit only once. The course may fulfill a degree requirement. Undergraduate students must refer, and ensure adherence, to specific program requirements and University policies governing work completed at another institution before enrolling in courses outside of Montclair State University.

Undergraduate students enrolled in graduate-level courses must adhere to the graduate student course repeat policy for all graduate-level courses.

To learn about potential impacts to eligibility for Financial Aid, please refer to the Financial Aid Student Handbook.

Graduate Students 

Graduate students must adhere to the policies on repeat coursework found in the Graduate Policy Manual.

Standards for Academic Progress/Retention Undergraduate

Transcript Notation Policy

  1. Students suspended from the University, as a result of academic standings, will have a notation placed on their transcript. If the student re-enrolls, remains in good academic standing and completes the requirements for graduation, the student may request removal of the notation at the time he/she files for graduation. Requests must be submitted to the Office of the Provost. The Provost, in consultation with other University officials, will make the final decision regarding removal of the notation.
  2. Students dismissed from the University, as a result of academic standings, will have a notation placed on their transcript. The notation is permanent.
  3. Notation will read as “Academic Suspension” and “Academic Dismissal” respectively.

Student Course Load

Full-time Undergraduate Students
Full-time undergraduate students should earn 15-16 credit hours per semester. Special permission is required to take a Course Overload of more than 19 credit hours. To be considered a full-time student one must register for and continue active enrollment in at least 12 semester hours for the entire semester.

Full-time undergraduate students who have at least sophomore standing (30 credit hours earned) and a 3.0 or above cumulative grade point average for the semester most recently completed may, upon the approval of the Dean of the College/School in which the student is majoring, register for a Course Overload. A College/School Dean may make exceptions to the above eligibility criteria for a Course Overload. Requests for Course Overloads of 23 or more credits must additionally be approved by the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education. All registrations for Course Overloads are on a space available basis and must be processed in person in Red Hawk Central. The University reserves the right to reduce the course load of any student who registers for more than 19 credit hours without Course Overload approval. Forms are available on the Forms page.

Part-time Undergraduate Students
Part-time undergraduate students are students who are registered for less than 12 semester hours.

Full-time Graduate Students
All full-time graduate students must register for a minimum of six (6) credits per semester, with a maximum of fifteen (15) credits allowed. For further information, visit the Graduate School website – Policies and Procedures.

Part-time Graduate Students
Part-time graduate students are those registered for less than 6 credits. For further information, visit the Graduate School website – Policies and Procedures.

Continuous Matriculation
For information, visit the Graduate School, Policies and Procedures.

Student Responsibility

The University reserves the right to terminate the enrollment of any student whose conduct, class attendance, academic record or financial obligation should prove unsatisfactory.

No student should be attending a course for which they are not registered

Withholding of Student Records

The release of diplomas and transcripts will be withheld for students who have a financial obligation to the University (e.g. library, parking, loans, etc.)