School of Nursing
Policies and Procedures
Academic Actions (Warning, Probation, Drop)
Appeals and Grievances
College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)
Clinical Grade Requirement
Credit by Examination
Dean's Honor List
Dropped Nursing Course(s)
English as a Second Language
Graduating with Distinction
Petition for Special Consideration
Progression in the Curriculum
Retroactive Language Credits
Uniform Requirements and Additional Expenses
Every student is expected to be present at all classes. Any student who is absent from three or more clinical or laboratory periods in a nursing course may be required to drop the course.
Every student (pre-nursing and nursing) is expected to maintain at least a 2.5 GPA on all work carried, whether passed or not, in each semester or summer session. Students who maintain this average are considered in good standing. Failure to earn this minimum GPA will result in the academic action of warning, probation, or dropped (academically dismissed). Students must be in good academic standing in order to be eligible for graduation.
If not on warning and:
a. Earns a GPA in a semester or summer session of 1.75–2.49 = warning
b. Earns a GPA in a semester or summer session of less than 1.75 = probation
If on warning and:
a. Earns a GPA in a semester or summer session of 1.75–2.49 = probation
b. Earns a GPA in a semester or summer session of less than 1.75 = dropped from the program
If on probation and:
a. Earns a GPA in a semester or summer session of 2.5 or above but cumulative GPA remains under 2.5 = continued probation
b. Earns a GPA in a semester or summer session of less than 2.5 or a nursing cumulative GPA below 2.5 = dropped from the program
In addition to the academic actions detailed above, nursing (NUR) students are placed on probation if they:
a. Earn a grade of F or NC in any nursing course, and/or
b. Earn a nursing cumulative GPA below 2.5
Students admitted to the School of Nursing directly as freshmen are expected to maintain a 3.0 cumulative and prerequisite GPA after the first academic year and each subsequent semester.
Any student on academic action will automatically be cleared of action status when the semester GPA is 2.5 or above and the cumulative GPA is 2.5 or above; and if NUR, NRN, or NCP classification, the nursing cumulative GPA is at least 2.5 or above.
Students who feel they have been treated unfairly have the right to question this treatment and receive a prompt hearing of the grievance. Before instituting an appeal or grievance, students should discuss their particular situations with an appropriate staff member (e.g., faculty member, director, associate dean, academic advisor). Students should contact the Academic Programs Office for appeal procedures.
A student may enroll in a course on an audit basis only with prior consent of the instructor. As an auditor, the student is considered a passive learner and may not recite in class or take examinations. Regular class attendance is expected. Courses audited carry no degree credits and are not graded, nor do they count in determining minimum or maximum credits carried in each term.
CLEP enables students who have attained college-level competency outside the classroom to take examinations for college credit or placement. The General Examinations measure undergraduate achievement in five basic areas of liberal arts education: English composition, humanities, mathematics, natural sciences, and social sciences/history. The Subject Examinations measure achievement in undergraduate courses. Credit will be granted for the General Examination according to the criteria established only to freshmen before they have earned more than 15 degree credits in a residence program or elsewhere.
Students must earn at least a C (2.0) grade in each required nursing clinical course. They must receive a CR (credit) in N219 and in N319. Any student who earns a grade below C (2.0) in a required nursing clinical course must repeat this course in order to progress in the program. To repeat the clinical course, an appeal must be made to the Academic Programs Office, which will decide whether or not the appeal merits approval. Upon a successful appeal, a student may repeat a failed clinical course based upon course schedule and available space. A clinical course can be repeated only once. Students cannot continue in the program after the second failed attempt.
For students accepted into the nursing major who have had experiences related to nursing outside of an accredited collegiate school of nursing, credit by examination options are available. Students who are successful will be granted credit. Students also may earn credit by examination in selected general education courses on the basis of previous education and experience.
The purpose of the Dean's Honor List is to recognize superior academic achievement of undergraduate students. Students must achieve a minimum GPA of 3.75 on a semester load of not fewer than 12 credits in order to be placed on the Dean's Honor List. A notation of Dean's Honor List will appear on the student’s grade report and transcript. Students who earn a semester GPA of 3.25–3.74 on 12 or more credits will receive a congratulatory statement on their end-of-semester grade report form.
A student who drops a nursing course may re-enroll in the course when space is available. A student who drops a nursing course a second time is not eligible for the course a third time.
Students whose native language is not English must have facility for English adequate for university work and must take a test before enrolling for the first time at the university. Students who do not have an adequate knowledge of English may enroll for one semester in English as a Second Language. The student assigned to this program satisfies the basic English composition requirements by receiving a passing grade in English 118. No student may earn more than 6 degree credits for course work carried in the English as a Second Language program and none of the credits can be used to satisfy humanities requirements.
The School of Nursing has a policy that requires all students to be proficient in English to provide safe patient care and to be successful academically. Students facing challenges in these areas may be referred by self-identification, a faculty member, or advisor to support services. Although limited English proficiency in itself is not a reason for dismissal, it can interfere with a student’s ability to complete course requirements, leading to failure to progress or meet program requirements.
The general quality of a student's work is expressed in terms of a grade point average (GPA) for each semester and summer session and cumulatively for all academic work. The GPA is the total number of grade points earned, divided by the total number of credits carried, exclusive of certain credits. For a detailed explanation, see the Grading System section of this catalog.
Graduation with Distinction will be noted on the transcript of students who earned 60 or more credits at UW-Madison and a grade point average that places them in the top 20 percent of those graduating from the School of Nursing that term.
An incomplete may be reported for a student who has carried a subject with a passing grade until near the end of the semester and then, because of illness or other unusual and substantiated cause beyond the student's control, is unable to take or complete the final examination or is unable to complete some limited amount of term work. An Incomplete is not given to a student who stays away from a final examination except as indicated above. In the absence of substantiated cause, the grade shall be F. Even with such proof, if the student's work has convinced the instructor that s/he cannot pass the course, the grade shall be F. Any Incomplete taken by School of Nursing students must be completed by the end of the student's next semester of residence (specifically, by the last day of classes), excluding summer sessions. If the work is not completed by this deadline, the Incomplete will lapse into a Failure unless the time limit has been extended in writing by the Academic Programs Office.
Students are responsible for identifying their area of interest or question, establishing objectives for their learning experience, and developing a learning contract with the faculty member. All independent study requires the consent of the instructor. Approval forms are available on the Forms Page within the School of Nursing StudentNet.
Students admitted to the School of Nursing are expected to have access to a laptop computer with basic productivity software during class. The School of Nursing has information on purchasing, loaning, and renting laptops available in the Academic Programs Office.
The total number of ungraded credits (i.e., pass/fail) applied to graduation requirements may not exceed 24. Students who plan graduate study are advised to consult with graduate studies departments to determine acceptance of credits taken under the pass/fail option. Students eligible for the pass/fail privilege are continuing students with NUR, NCP, or PRN 2, 3 or 4 classifications who have a minimum 2.5 cumulative GPA on all courses completed and have no end-of-semester academic actions on their current record. Newly admitted students in these classifications are also eligible for the pass/fail privilege.
Only one course can be carried on pass/fail basis during each semester or summer session; or 3- or 4 credits of 1-credit modular courses. No required courses may be carried under the pass/fail option. The registrar's office will convert final letter grades reported by the student's instructor to an S (pass) grade if the letter grade is C or higher or to a U (fail) if the final letter grade is below C. Course credits in which a student obtains a U grade cannot be counted toward the minimum of 124 credits required for graduation.
Students interested in the pass/fail option must contact their nursing academic advisor to determine eligibility. Approved students can then complete the online Change Request accessed through the Student Center in MyUW no later than the end of the fourth week of classes each semester and by the end of the second week of classes in the eight-week summer session.
The School of Nursing’s Petition for Special Consideration form is for students who request an exception to any of the policies and procedures outlined in the catalog, including credit overload, second majors, progression, withdrawal, etc. The form is accessed via the StudentNet.
A full-time program is 12 to 18 credits for a semester. Students who wish to carry more than 18 credits per semester must obtain permission from the Academic Programs Office. Students will be assessed additional tuition per credit on all credits carried over 18.
To be in good standing, students must maintain:
- a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or above, and
- a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or above on all nursing courses completed, and
- a GPA of 2.5 or above in the semester just completed
The time required to complete the program depends on the sequence of courses, plan of study, obtaining credit by examination, and placement availability in nursing courses. Students may complete the program in four years; however, additional semesters or summer sessions may be needed to fulfill requirements. If requirements for the degree have not been completed within five years after admission to the nursing major, the student's academic record will be reviewed by the Academic Programs Office to establish additional requirements, if appropriate.
Any student who leaves the School of Nursing and wishes to return after an absence of one semester or more must file a reentry application with the UW–Madison Office of Admissions and Recruitment. Permission to reenter is dependent on previous academic standing and length of absence. Immediate placement in required nursing courses is not assured. Students seeking reentry to the baccalaureate program who have left on academic action must be reviewed by the Academic Programs Office and the chair of the Undergraduate Admission and Progression Committee. If readmission is granted, academic requirements may be specified to insure currency in nursing knowledge and skills prior to enrolling in clinical nursing courses. These requirements may include remediation and/or repetition of courses, depending on academic standing or length of time since leaving the program. The remaining program will be planned as considered best for the student and according to the current curriculum.
Undergraduate students may repeat any non-clinical course once without special permission from the associate dean, with all grades (A through F) and their associated grade points included in the GPA, but with credits counted only once for any other purpose. A grade of F in a course must be repeated within the next two semesters in residence. No more than two nursing courses may be repeated.
Students must complete at least 30 credits at UW–Madison. Baccalaureate students must complete at least 15 credits in nursing courses from the School of Nursing, including one required clinical nursing course at the 400 level or above.
The School of Nursing grants retroactive foreign language credit to students for foreign language skill developed in high school or elsewhere. To earn retroactive credits for language, students must enroll in a higher level language course at UW–Madison before the end of the first two semesters in residence. Transfer students must enroll in the course on the UW–Madison campus before they earn 30 degree credits (including credits transferred from other campuses but not including AP, CLEP, IB, or retro credits in another language). Students must earn a grade of B or better. If these conditions are met, retroactive credits should appear automatically on a student’s transcript by the beginning of the following semester. Students will receive credit for the UW course completed and for all lower level courses in that language up to 16 retroactive credits maximum. These retroactive language credits may be used to meet degree requirements of the college or department, but may not be used to meet humanities requirements. They will be counted as electives only.
Second undergraduate degree candidates are considered for admission to both the pre-nursing and nursing classifications. Students who apply as second undergraduate program candidates must meet the admission and transfer grade point requirements of the university in place at the time they apply for admission. If admitted, an action is taken granting permission to pursue a second degree.
Students may pursue a second major. Students must complete the nursing school’s Petition for Special Consideration, available on the StudentNet. This form must be reviewed and approved by the Academic Programs Office within the School of Nursing.
In addition to the basic expenses for undergraduate students, nursing students will have additional expenses for uniforms and travel during the last two years of the program. Nursing students are required to purchase an approved UW–Madison School of Nursing uniform. The uniform consists of a white top and navy pants. Lab coats embroidered with the nursing logo are also required and worn when students are on clinical units doing clinical preparation. In addition, students may be required to wear their lab coats during community clinical experiences. Students wear predominantly white nursing, running, or walking shoes when on the clinical units. Clinical courses require travel to hospitals and agencies outside of the Madison area. Therefore, students must have a valid driver's license and use of an automobile. Students are responsible for travel costs.
A nursing student who finds it necessary to withdraw during a semester or summer session must talk with an academic advisor and complete the withdrawal process. Failure to do so may result in a recording of failure for all courses. Any student may withdraw from the program without grades being recorded during the first 12 weeks of a semester. After the 12th week, a student may withdraw only with the permission of the Academic Programs Office.