You are considered a full-time student at VCU when you are enrolled in 12 or more credit hours. You may not exceed 19 credit hours per semester without special permission from your advisor.

Academic Level

Q: What are the criteria to be a sophomore, junior or senior?

Students are classified based on the following credit levels:

Sophomore – at least 24 credits
Junior – at least 54 credits
Senior – at least 85 credits

Changing Majors

Q: How do I change majors?

Before initiating a change of major, concentration or minor, students should contact the office administering the program of study to carefully review the requirements and prerequisites. In certain programs — including those in Media and Culture and in the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies program — a candidate must fulfill additional requirements before authorization to enter the program is granted. Credits previously earned at VCU or at another university may or may not be applicable to the new academic program.

To request a change, students should complete a Change of Major/Concentration/Minor form, and submit it to the new program for approval.

Enrollment Services has complete instructions.

Grade appeals

Q: How do I initiate a grade appeal?

If you believe a grade you received was assigned arbitrarily or against the criteria and requirements outlined in the course syllabus or assignment guidelines, you may appeal your course grade. When a student has evidence that a final grade has not been assigned in accordance with the stated criteria, the student shall discuss it first with the faculty member. The faculty member will explain how the final grade was determined. If the student continues to feel that the grade was incorrectly assigned, a written appeal may be submitted to the chair of the department in which the course was taught. Students appealing grades assume the burden of proof. The appeal shall state and support with all available evidence the reasons why the student believes the grade should be changed.

Refer to the VCU Bulletin for details on the appeal process.

Withdrawing from a class

Q: How do I withdraw from a class?

After the add/drop period and through the end of the first 10 weeks of classes, students can withdraw from classes using eServices. Failure to withdraw from classes by the end of the first 10 weeks of classes could result in the assignment of failing grades in all or some of the courses. The final withdrawal date for courses whose meeting dates do not conform to the semester calendar is the day when one-half of the courses have been completed.

Refer to Records and Registration for details on the withdrawing from a class.

ARAC appeals

Q: How do I appeal a VCU policy?

If you wish to appeal for an exception to VCU academic regulations, this appeal must be made to the Academic Regulations Appeals Committee. Examples of such appeals include retroactive withdrawals from classes, waiver of the continuance policy following a suspension, and waiver of the last 25 percent residency requirement for courses taken at VCU.

The Academic Regulations Appeals Committee considers appeals for exceptions to undergraduate program academic regulations listed in the VCU Bulletin. The committee — composed of faculty and administrators from each school and the college, and representatives from the Office of Records and Registration, Division of Community Engagement and the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services — is a standing committee of the Office of Academic Affairs.

Before assembling your petition, students in the College of Humanities and Sciences should review the ARAC Instructions pdficon_small. Students who are majoring in a program outside the College should contact the appropriate ARAC representative within that program. If you are a freshman or have an undeclared major, then please contact the ARAC representative for the University College by sending an email to

You must write a letter explaining your request and provide any documentation supporting your situation. See the ARAC Letter Writing Instructions pdficon_small for step-by-step instructions for writing an appeals letter to the committee. The ARAC Coversheet pdficon_small should be completed and attached to your letter, any supporting documentation and a copy of your unofficial transcript, which can be printed from VCU eServices.

If you are seeking a retroactive withdrawal or drop, you will also need to complete the ARAC Faculty Memorandum pdficon_small for each course being appealed. In some cases, an e-mail with the necessary information will suffice.

The VCU Bulletin outlines University policies.

For more information or to contact the College’s ARAC representative, send an e-mail request to, or contact the Office of Student Services by calling (804) 827-8211 or visiting the office in Hibbs Hall, Room 211.

Dean’s List

Q: What are the criteria to make the Dean's List?

If you are a full-time student, with a minimum of 12 hours of graded courses, and earn a GPA of at least 3.5 for the semester, you are eligible for the Dean’s list. However, if you earn an I (incomplete) or PR (progress) grade for the semester, you will be ineligible for the honor.

Graduating with Honors

Q: What GPA do I need to graduate with honors?

Graduating with honors is based on your cumulative GPA. All courses taken at VCU, as well as credits accepted from other institutions, determine if you qualify. The three levels of graduation honors include:

Cum laude – 3.30 to 3.59 GPA
Magna cum laude – 3.60 to 3.89 GPA
Summa cum laude – 3.9 or better GPA

If you complete The Honors College requirements, you also qualify to graduate with University Honors. To graduate with University Honors, you must have at least a 3.5 cumulative GPA and 3.2 GPA in honors courses. This is a nonnegotiable requirement.

Refer to the Honors College for details.

Transferring Credit

Q: What happens if I take a course somewhere besides VCU?

These steps should be followed by students who plan to take a course during the summer, or any other time, at another college or university.

You must complete the Request to Take Courses at Another Institution form and deliver it to the Office of Student Services in Hibbs 211 for the approval of the Dean. The form for this request may be found on the “forms” web page for Records and Registration ( To complete the form, first meet with your advisor to see if the course is transferable to VCU. (you can see what courses have already been approved to transfer to VCU, and their course equivalencies, by visiting the online Transfer Guide). You are responsible for having one transcript from the other institution sent to Records and Registration at VCU so the course(s) can be posted to your VCU transcript.

The Transfer Center at VCU is the best resource for more information.

Check the VCU Bulletin for the most comprehensive guide to VCU academic policies and procedures