Academic Warning, Probation, And Suspension

Central College admits students who have the background, desire and ability to be successful at Central and make adequate progress toward the degree. To graduate from Central College, a student must earn 120 semester hours of credit with a minimum grade point average of 2.000 overall and in their declared major. Full-time students are expected to complete the requirements for graduation within four years (eight semesters) by completing an average of 30 credits each academic year.  The goal of the college is to ensure that students have the resources they need to succeed academically and to support the student’s acquisition of skills of mind, body, and spirit.  The Office of the Class Deans and other resources on campus are designed to help students succeed academically, while at the same time helping them fulfill their interests in outside activities.  It is with this ethos in mind that Central has developed this system of academic guidance for students.

A probation and dismissal committee shall be appointed by the VPAA. This group will include two appointees and the registrar. The committee, in consultation with the class deans, determines which students are to be warned, placed on probation, continued on probation, suspended or, as a last resort, dismissed, if they are not progressing at the rates indicated below*:


Semester 1 GPA* Semester 2 GPA**
First Year 1.700 1.800
Second Year 1.900 2.000
Third Year 2.000 2.000
Fourth Year 2.000 2.000

* First- and second-year students are expected to achieve a minimum cumulative and major GPA that coincides with the number of semesters in college.

Academic warning

Students who meet the above minimum standards may receive a written notice of warning if one or more of the following is observed:

  • A cumulative GPA less than 2.000, but greater than the minimum required for their classification;
  • A semester GPA below 2.000, even though the cumulative GPA is above 2.000;
  • Fewer than 12 semester hours of credit earned in any semester (summer  excluded); or
  • Earning credits at a pace that will put them more than one full semester behind a projected four-year graduation.

Students who receive an academic warning may choose to receive academic mentoring from a class dean to identify solutions to problems the student may be experiencing while at Central, or any other needs moving forward.  Students who receive an academic warning for two consecutive semesters may be placed on academic probation.


Academic probation

When a student does not meet the cumulative or major grade point average expected, and/or falls more than one semester behind a projected four-year graduation, the student will be placed on academic probation for the next regular semester of enrollment, and the advisor will be notified. Students placed on academic probation should use the semester as an opportunity to focus on academic improvement.    Students will meet with their class dean regularly to clarify goals, identify campus resources to help them succeed, develop additional mentoring relationships with faculty, and enhance their academic skills. Students on academic probation are ineligible to participate in many co-curricular activities, including the following:

  • NCAA Division III athletics practices, competitions, and related activities;
  • Dance or cheer team;
  • Music ensembles;
  • Theatre productions, including musicals;
  • Student government leadership;
  • Study abroad or domestic semester away programs;
  • Fraternity or sorority pledging;
  • Other college-sponsored co-curricular activities.

If a non-athletic activity is required for the probationary student’s major, exceptions to this list may be granted with the approval of the student’s class dean and academic advisor.  If there is a question as to the appropriateness of an activity, students should consult with their class dean.

Students who improve their cumulative GPA, major GPA, and total credits earned to the minimum level expected during the fall or spring semester will be removed from academic probation; students who make such improvement after a summer session will be removed from academic probation, but will be required to meet with their class dean during the fall semester. Students who are removed from academic probation as a result of summer performance but fail to attend subsequent meetings with their class dean may be immediately returned to academic probation.

Students who make a noted improvement, but do not achieve the minimum levels outlined above, will be continued on academic probation until their grade point average (cumulative and major) and completed semester hours are at the level(s) expected for their classification. Students on academic probation who demonstrate little or no improvement may be suspended or dismissed.

Students on academic probation for more than one semester may have their financial aid reduced. See the catalog section on Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress for more information.


Academic suspension

Students who have not benefitted from academic probation or who demonstrate an abrupt decline in academic progress will be suspended. Suspension is deemed appropriate when it is apparent that the student needs a break from studies at Central to prioritize their academic goals and ultimately return and achieve a Central degree. Students are typically suspended for a minimum of two semesters, although the associate academic dean (or designee named by the VPAA) may, with discretion, reduce the period of suspension to one term. Students who have been suspended are not eligible to enroll in summer classes at Central College until after being approved for re-entry. A transcript notation will indicate that a student has been suspended for academic reasons (e.g., academic suspension MM/DD/YYYY).


Students wishing to return to Central College following the suspension period must apply for re-entry by contacting the associate academic dean (or designee named by the VPAA) in writing. The re-entry request will be evaluated in light of interim experiences that reflect increased readiness to succeed academically. Students have a greater likelihood of being approved for re-entry if they show evidence of growth; this can be accomplished by successfully completing courses at another accredited institution, securing counseling to resolve personal issues, engaging in work opportunities that demonstrate success, or similar opportunities.


Academic dismissal

Students who consistently fail to meet satisfactory academic progress standards will be dismissed from the college. Typically, students will be placed on academic probation or suspension prior to dismissal, although a particularly unsuccessful semester may result in immediate dismissal. Students academically dismissed are not eligible to re-enroll at Central. A transcript notation will indicate that a student has been dismissed for academic reasons (e.g., academic dismissal MM/DD/YYYY).


Appeal of academic suspension or dismissal

Students who have been suspended or dismissed for academic reasons may appeal in writing to the associate academic dean (or designee named by the VPAA). Permission to continue may be granted if there is evidence previously unavailable that identifies factors that contributed to the unsuccessful semester. Emotional appeals will not be considered. Students who successfully appeal a suspension or dismissal decision will be placed on academic probation. If the appeal is denied, the suspended student may apply for re-entry after their period of suspension has ended.


Mitigating circumstances

Central College may set aside the minimum academic standards for an individual student if it is determined that an unusual situation affected the student’s progress. The registrar and associate academic dean (or designee named by the VPAA) will make this determination on behalf of the student. Mitigating circumstances may include, but are not limited to, a documented serious/prolonged student illness or injury, or the death of a close relative.


Amended student records

Satisfactory academic progress is based on the student’s official academic records at the time of the progress review. If a record is amended to reflect appropriate changes (e.g., an incomplete “I” grade is replaced by a standard letter grade), the student’s academic status may be reassessed, and, accordingly, the student’s academic standing may be modified. Any changes to a student’s academic standing based on the amended student record will be effective immediately.