Academic Catalog 2021-2022

Academic Definitions and Regulations

The Credit Hour

The credit hour is the basic unit of credit awarded for progress toward a degree. Gardner- Webb University defines a credit hour as a reasonable approximation of the student learning outcomes that can be achieved in the context of a course which requires 42-45 hours of student work including both contact time between student and faculty and the student’s independent work. While hours of work and contact time can provide guidance in the establishment of credit hour equivalencies, it is understood that the student achievement associated with credit hours can only be measured adequately in terms of documented qualitative and quantitative outcomes. The successful completion of a credit hour will always take into consideration expectations based on degree level, discipline, the type of learning experience (e.g., didactic, clinical, practica, or internships), and the mode of delivery (e.g., face-to-face or online). This definition is a minimum standard that does not restrict faculty from setting a higher standard that requires more student work per credit hour. This policy defines a credit hour at Gardner-Webb University in accordance with applicable federal regulations.


Classifications are made at the beginning of the academic year in August or at the time of the student’s enrollment.

A sophomore must have removed all entrance conditions and have completed 30 credit hours of work toward a degree.

A junior must have completed 60 credit hours, and a senior, 90 credit hours of credit toward a degree.

Non-degree-seeking students include all persons not enrolled in a degree program.

Academic Course Load

A student is considered full-time if enrolled for 12 credit hours or more. The normal academic course load is 16 credit hours. However, any student in good standing may take up to a maximum of 21.5 credit hours. Academic course load limits include all transient coursework, i.e., work taken concurrently at other institutions. The approval of Educational Policies and Standards Committee (EPSC) and the endorsement of the student’s advisor and Chair of the Department/Dean of the School are required to exceed 21.5 credit hours. In the case of student-athletes, the approval of the Director of Academic Support for Student-Athletes is also required. The academic course load appeal form should be submitted to the EPSC Chair. Electronic submission of the form and all supporting documents is recommended. A paper submission should include the original plus three copies. There are additional tuition charges when exceeding more than 18.5 hours per semester.

No residential student may be enrolled for fewer than 12 credit hours at any time during a semester unless given prior permission by the Office of Housing and Residence Education.

The normal academic course load for each term of summer school is six credit hours or a four-credit-hour laboratory course plus one three-credit-hour course. The maximum number of hours for which a student may enroll in summer is 15 credit hours.

Course Registration

Students register for classes online through WebbConnect according to the posted schedule on the official Academic Calendar. Before registration, each student must consult with his or her academic advisor on course selection, General Education requirements, major requirements, and other degree requirements. After a face-to-face advising session for each semester, the student will be given a registration PIN (Personal Identification Number) to allow the student to enroll in classes. However, it is the responsibility of the student, not the academic advisor, to ensure that all University graduation requirements are met. A student will not receive credit for any course for which registration has not been completed. At the time of registration, the student is responsible for updating their anticipated date of graduation and contact information.

Auditing Courses

A Gardner-Webb University student may audit a course for a nominal charge. For full-time Traditional Undergraduate students, the fee is waived. The Audit Form is located in WebbbConnect under the Registration link and must be submitted to Registrar Services prior to the end of the schedule modification period (first week of classes). Individuals who are not Gardner-Webb students may audit a course for a nominal charge provided an application is filed with the Admissions Office.

Auditors are subject to the attendance regulations of the University. Auditors are eligible to participate in class activities and assessments but faculty are not obligated to provide services including, but not limited to, grading, advising, mentoring, or counseling. Additional requirements, if any, are the responsibility of the instructor. Credit will not be allowed for any course for which a student registers as an auditor.

Administrative Changes in Class and Schedule

The University reserves the right to cancel or discontinue any course because of insufficient enrollment or for other valid reasons. In order to assure quality instruction, the University reserves the right to close registration when the maximum enrollment has been reached, or to make changes in the schedule, delivery format, and/or faculty assignment.

Adding, Dropping, and Withdrawing from Courses

The student’s schedule may be adjusted by adding and dropping courses with the approval of the academic advisor during the schedule modification period. Check the Academic Calendar for dates. Courses that are officially dropped by a student do not appear on a student’s transcript. If a student does not officially drop a class but never attends the class, a grade of “@W” will appear on the student’s transcript.

After the schedule modification period, any official withdrawal from a class must be done by the student by submitting the Withdrawal Form located in WebbConnect. When a student officially withdraws from a course, a grade of “W’’ (withdrew) is recorded during the first 40% of the term. After this period, a “WP” (withdrew passing) or “WF” (withdrew failing) is assigned by the instructor based upon an assessment of the student’s work to date in the course. No hours attempted are recorded for “W’’ and “WP” grades. Check the Academic Calendar for dates.

The last day for withdrawing from an individual course is four weeks after mid-term or a date not to exceed 75% of the course. Check the Academic Calendar for dates. After this date only a complete withdrawal from school will be processed.

The directions for withdrawing are listed below.

  1. Log in to WebbConnect
  2. Click Registration
  3. Click Withdrawal Information
Notification of the request is sent to the student upon the processing of the withdrawal.

Change of Name or Address

Students are requested to contact Registrar Services at 704-406-4260 in the event of any change of name or address.