New and continuing students are encouraged to seek academic advisement in planning their education. Initial advisement for new students is available through the Student Services Office. Once enrolled, the Registrar assigns a faculty mentor/advisor to each new student based on his or her enrolled program and sometimes on the delivery mode; some assignments overlap.
“50% Rule” – Limitation of Courses Taken at Teaching Sites
Students enrolled in any degree level at Grace (MABS, MDiv, ThM) must take less than 50% of their program’s courses at a teaching site or any combination of teaching sites. Conversely, students enrolled in any degree level must take 50% or more of their program’s courses at the main campus, online, streaming video (synchronous or asynchronous/archived), or any combination thereof. The Registrar monitors these numbers and the Academic Advisors will work with students to ensure that this percentage is maintained.
Completion of Online Courses and Programs
Students may complete 100% of their program online provided that all of the courses required for their program are available online. Grace usually offers all Bible exposition, theology, and ministry skills courses required for the TSC, BSC, MABS, and MDiv online periodically. ThM required courses beyond the MDiv program requirements and any language courses may or
may not be offered or available online.
Drop and Add
This section states the processes for enrolling and withdrawing (adding and dropping) students from a course according to rules formulated to maintain orderliness and academic quality, with lawful refunds of tuition and fees when applicable. No late fees will be charged against a student during the open registration period. However, fees will apply after the closing date of open registration. Contact the Registrar for more information.
Adding a Course
A student may add a course according to the deadlines stated in the Academic Calendar and upon approval by the Academic Advisor. No additional courses will be allowed after the deadline. This is to ensure students have enough time to order and receive textbooks and to prepare for the first class session. To add a course, the student must use the Populi student database.
Officially Dropping a Course
Official drop means that the approved procedure to withdraw from a course was followed by the student. The only way to officially drop a course is through Populi or by using the Withdrawal Drop Form and sending it to the Registrar. This applies to all courses, irrespective of delivery mode or course length.
Unofficially Dropping a Course
Beware of unofficially dropping a course. It will adversely affect your grades and student account. Unofficial drop means that the approved procedure to withdraw from a course was not followed by the student. Students are prohibited from
dropping a course by:
- Not attending the course
- Communicating their desire to drop the course other than submitting the Withdrawal Drop Form to the Registrar
- Communicating their desire to drop the course to employees other than the Registrar (or his or her assistant).
When a student unofficially drops a course, the Registrar will apply the Student Attendance Policy to determine the date of the drop and will assign the notation WF (Withdrawal-Fail) to the student’s record, according to the Grading System
Policy. Refunds are never due for unofficial drops.
Most of our courses may be taken for enrichment rather than for credit. Taking a course for “enrichment” is the same as “auditing a course.” The enrichment student is not required to complete any of the assigned material for the course, and any material completed may not be graded depending on the availability and discretion of the professor. Courses taken for enrichment do not count towards any degree or certificate program. If the student wishes to convert an enrichment course to a credit course, he or she must request to do so before the last class meeting for the course. The student must have timely completed all assigned material, pay the difference in tuition and fees due for credit, and otherwise comply with all applicable requirements of the seminary and the professor.
Further, conversion of a course taken for enrichment to a credit course is ultimately up to the discretion of the professor teaching the course and the academic dean. If the student wishes to convert a credit course to an enrichment course, he or she must request to do so before the withdrawal date for that particular course. There is no refund of tuition or fees for this change.
Permission may be granted for a student to enroll in a regular course through independent study. Students who take courses by independent study lose the benefit of classroom interaction with the professor and other students. Therefore, independent studies are granted only in extenuating circumstances, and should not be undertaken solely for personal convenience. A request for an independent study should be submitted via General Petition to the Academic Affairs Office well in advance of the scheduled registration time.
Grace School of Theology believes classroom interaction between the professor and students is a vital part of training. Absence from two class sessions during a 15-week course or one class session during an 8-week course may result in a grade reduction for the course. Absence from more than two class sessions during a 15-week course or one class session during an 8-week course will result in failure of the course. Exceptions to this may be granted via General Petition. Students who enroll in online only courses, or in courses using synchronous or archived video as part of the course delivery system demonstrate weekly attendance by their participation in group discussions, completing online requirements, and by submitting assignments on time as required in the course syllabus. The professor determines attendance and is responsible for reporting attendance to the Registrar on a weekly basis.
In the case of serious illness, family emergency or other extenuating circumstances, students may request an extension that will allow them to complete their coursework beyond the end of the course. The request for extension must be approved in advance by the instructor for the course and may be granted for up to 30 days beyond the end of the course. Instructors are not obligated to approve any petition of extension. If an extension is approved, the student will be given a temporary incomplete for the course. If the student fails to complete the work by the end of the extension, the incomplete will be changed to a failing grade, unless the professor provides a different final grade. A student may not enroll for the following semester with more than two incompletes.
The maximum course load per semester in all programs is 9 credits, normally 3 courses. Students who desire to enroll for more than 9 credits per semester must gain the approval of their Academic Advisor and the Vice President of Academic Affairs.
Grace School of Theology maintains a variety of records relating to students. The Registrar’s Office retains the official file, which includes the student’s original application for admission, recommendation forms, transcripts and other pertinent information. These records are available to faculty and staff who have legitimate educational interests. Educational records are released to outside individuals or agencies only with the student’s written permission. The only exceptions are those specifically required in Section 438 of the General Provision Acts.
Faculty members are required to submit final grades to the Office of the Registrar within two weeks of the completion of modular and semester courses. Student grades will be processed and recorded in the student’s electronic file. All grades will be available for the student’s viewing through their student profile on the Populi system.
The grade point average (GPA) is a numerical representation of a student’s overall academic achievement. It is obtained by assigning point values to specific grades and multiplying these values by the number of semester hours received in that course. The total number of grade points earned for one semester or for all semesters at Grace School of Theology is divided by the total number of semester hours. Grades of I and WP are not assigned grade point values and are not used in the computation of the grade point average. A grade of WF is assigned a grade point value of zero (0). No points are given
for a grade lower than a C- (1.7 grade points). The grade point values are as shown in the following chart.
Soliciting of Funds, Selling of Non-Food Items
Persons wishing to solicit funds, sell printed matter or other nonfood items, or distribute or post advertising dealing with non-commercial items or services must seek approval in advance from the Academic Vice Presidents’ designate. Except for newspapers, these activities must be sponsored by the Seminary or a registered student organization, and the individuals engaged in these activities must be currently enrolled at the Seminary. State law prohibits the Seminary from permitting its facilities and grounds to be used for personal gain. The distribution or posting of commercial literature and/ or other items for personal gain on campus is prohibited.
Grace School of Theology students and alumni are entitled to receive transcripts of their completed coursework. Upon the written request of the student via the Transcript Request Form, with signature, the Registrar’s Office will issue an official transcript to appropriate institutions or individuals. Transcripts will not be issued for students who have not met their financial obligations. A transcript fee is charged.
Program Completion Limits
Grace recognizes that the majority of its students are adult learners with very busy schedules. We encourage students to take courses and complete programs at a reasonable, but constant pace in light of family, work, and ministry responsibilities.
Maintaining a constant and continuous pace toward the completion of any program will create better success as the student grows spiritually, becomes more solidly grounded in the Scriptures, and becomes more and more effective in ministry. With this in mind, the following limits are in place to program completion.
From the initial semester of acceptance into Grace:
- All work leading to a Certificate must be completed within three years.
- All work leading to the MABS degree must be completed within six years.
- All work leading to the MDiv degree must be completed within eight years.
- All work leading to the ThM degree must be completed within ten years.
Periods when students have petitioned and received a ‘Leave of Absence’ will not count toward the limit. Extension of any of these limits requires a recommendation from the student’s academic advisor and approval from the Vice President of Academic Affairs, in consultation with Student Services as appropriate.
- Give evidence of biblical understanding, godly character and readiness for ministry.
- Successfully pass a comprehensive theology review exam.
- Complete the prescribed course of study and achieve the required grade point average as outlined in the catalog.
- Settle all financial obligations, including payment of the graduation fee.
- Receive the recommendation of the faculty and approval by the Board of Trustees for graduation.
- Make a request in writing, prior to enrolling for their final semester, to be considered for graduation.
- Attend commencement exercises. Permission to graduate in absentia should be requested in writing from the Administrative Committee at least six weeks prior to commencement.
Additional graduation requirements for specific programs are outlined in the Academic Catalog. Students who have not completed all academic requirements may petition Administrative Committee to participate in commencement if the remaining requirements will be completed by the end of summer semester and if eight hours or less remain for completion.
Commencement exercises are held only at the end of the spring semester.