ECU Undergraduate Catalog 2000-2001




The catalog of East Carolina University, issued early in the summer of each year, is intended to give the description of the work of the university and such a digest of its regulations as is needed by students. Although the courses announced and the regulations given are fairly continuous from year to year, neither of them may be valid after the issuance of a new catalog.

Ordinarily, a student may expect to be allowed to earn  a degree in accordance with the requirements of the curriculum described in the catalog in force when he or she first entered the university or in any subsequent catalog published while he or she is a student, but the faculty of the university reserves the right to make changes in curricula and in regulations at any time when in its judgment such changes are for the best interest of the students and of the university. If a student elects to meet the requirements of a catalog other than the one in force at the time of his or her original entrance, he or she must meet all requirements of the selected catalog.  A student who changes degree program or major will be expected to meet all of the requirements of the new program of the catalog in force at the time of the change, except for students who do not declare a major upon entrance and who may meet the requirements of the catalog in force at the time of their entrance to East Carolina University.  During the period that the student is assigned to the General College, the university rule that a student adopt the catalog that is current whenever he or she changes his or her program does not apply.  Except for the requirements for admission to certain programs, the catalog that was current at the time the student entered the General College will apply when he or she leaves the General College and declares a major unless (1) the student elects a later catalog; (2) the student changes his or her program after initial transfer from the General College; or (3) accreditation requirements for the university have been changed.  No student will be permitted to graduate under a catalog issued more than five years prior to the date of his or her graduation.

Academic advisers will offer  guidance to students in academic matters and  refer students to those qualified to help them in other matters.  The final responsibility for meeting all academic requirements for a selected program rests, however, with the student.

The vice chancellor for academic affairs has authority on all established curricular matters.


The number of semester hours required for a baccalaureate degree at East Carolina University is typically 128 s.h. or fewer.  (Any exceptions are indicated immediately following the name of the degree in the undergraduate catalog.)  Students who satisfactorily complete an average of 15-16 credit hours per semester should be able to obtain their degrees in four years or eight semesters.  Some factors which may extend an individual student's time for completion of a degree are averaging fewer than 15-16 credit hours per semester, repeating courses, failing to meet course prerequisites, changing majors, taking unnecessary or inappropriate courses, withdrawing from school, dropping or failing courses, adding minors and second or double majors, and becoming academically ineligible to continue enrollment.  Participation in internships, practica, cooperative education, and study abroad programs may or may not extend the number of semesters for graduation.


The university maintains approximately 100 official bulletin boards at key locations on campus and also maintains an official bulletin board on the ECU home page on the Internet. Through consecutively numbered official announcements,  academic departments and other divisions of the university communicate essential and timely information to students; it is the responsibility of the student to read and know the contents of those announcements which affect his or her program.


Students should refer to the requirements of their respective schools or departments for information about their programs of study and confer with their advisers whenever problems arise. The student is expected to follow the program outlined as closely as possible, particularly in the first two years when satisfying basic degree requirements and prerequisites for advanced standing.


To be admitted officially, a student must apply, be accepted, and receive a letter of acceptance.  The student then reports to the office of the school or department to which he or she has been assigned.  A  faculty adviser will supply further information.  To register, a student must complete an on line registration schedule and have it approved by the adviser and entered into the computer via a terminal operator, telephonic registration, or web registration.  To complete the process and be officially registered and entered on the class roll, a student must pay fees to the cashier's office.  No person will be admitted to any class unless officially registered either

for audit or for credit. Students are expected to complete registration (including the payment of all required fees) on the dates prescribed in the university calendar. 

Students who register during the early registration period are required to pay their fees and secure their official schedules during the stipulated period prior to registration day.  Students who fail to pay fees by this date will have their schedules canceled. 


Early registration is a time designated each semester for currently enrolled or readmitted students to meet with their advisers to review their records and plan their courses for the upcoming semester.  The student will complete an on line registration schedule and have it approved by the adviser and entered into the computer via a terminal operator, telephonic registration, or web registration. (New freshmen and transfers entering fall and spring semesters may not register earlier than the appropriate orientation session.)


During Schedule Change Period

During the first five days of classes (Mondays through Fridays) of the fall and spring semesters, a student may drop or add a course or courses to his or her schedule.  The student should discuss schedule changes with his or her adviser prior to making the changes via terminal operator or telephonic registration.  On the day following the five-day schedule change period, a student may make final additions to his or her schedule. 

During the summer, the schedule change period is limited to the first two days of classes each term.  On the day following the two-day schedule change period, a student may make final additions to his or her schedule in accordance with the policies outlined above for the regular semesters.

After Schedule Change Period

During the first 40 percent of the regularly scheduled class meetings of a course (including the meeting for the final examination), a student may, at his or her own option, drop the course.  After consultation with his or her adviser, the student secures the signature of the adviser on the schedule change form and takes it to the Office of the Registrar for processing.  For regular semester-length courses, the drop period is limited to the first thirty days of classes of the semester.  For five-week block courses or regular summer term courses, the drop period is limited to the first ten days of classes for the semester or summer term.  The same 40 percent drop-period rule applies to block courses of other lengths as well.  It is the student’s responsibility to consult official university bulletin boards to determine the appropriate drop period for such block courses.  Ordinarily, a student may drop up to four courses or a smaller prorated number in pursuit of a university degree.  (See Course Drop Allocations.)  Extenuating circumstances, however, can warrant consideration for drop by exception, as explained below.

Students may petition the dean of Undergraduate Studies for drops by exception (drops after the 40 percent drop period, drops beyond student’s allotted number, and drops not counted against the allotted number).  Poor performance in course work; missed deadlines; or a course grade’s adverse effect on the student’s grade point average, probationary standing, or other eligibility is not in itself a sufficient basis for exception.  Requests for exceptions will not be considered after the last regularly scheduled class meeting prior to the final examination for the course(s) in question except where earlier requests could not have been expected.  Petitions for drops by exception will typically be granted only for medical or counseling reasons related to the course(s) to be dropped and will be considered by the dean of Undergraduate Studies upon the recommendation of the director of the Student Health Service or the director of the Center for Counseling and Student Development, as appropriate.  Students whose petitions for drops by exception are denied by the dean of Undergraduate Studies may appeal the decision to the Course Drop Appeals Committee.


In pursuit of a degree at East Carolina University, a student may drop up to four courses.  The number of course drops is prorated on the student's credit hours (both ECU and transferred) at the time of implementation or the student's initial matriculation:

First Undergraduate Degree Second Undergraduate Degree
0-29 s.h.  of credit—4 course drops A student who needs no more than
30-59 s.h. of credit—3 course drops

30 s.h. of credit—1 course drop

60-89 s.h. of credit—2 course drops

31-59 s.h. of credit—2 course drops

90 or more s.h. of credit—1 course drop

60 s.h. or more s.h.—3 course drops

Students may use the drops during the designated course-drop period of each term; drops not used roll forward to the following term.


An undergraduate student is not permitted to select courses more than one classification level above the student's own classification. There are occasions, however, on which exceptions to this regulation may be deemed desirable and necessary by the student's adviser and/or dean.  Under these circumstances, a student will be allowed to register for courses two or more levels above the student's classification if the registration or schedule change form contains the initials of the adviser and/or dean written on the line with the course that is involved in the regulation.

Five-thousand-level (5000-5999) courses are graduate courses. Undergraduate students may be admitted to five-thousand-level courses with the written permission of the chairperson of the department or the dean of the school in which the course is offered.

Only students who have been admitted to pursue graduate work on a degree or nondegree basis will be permitted to enroll in courses numbered 6000 or above. A senior within 6 s.h. of graduation who has been admitted to a graduate degree program may take a 6000-level course while completing undergraduate degree requirements but only for graduate credit.

Prerequisites are stated as integral parts of various programs, entrance requirements for degree programs, and sequential progression into subject matter.  Students are not allowed to enroll in courses for which they have not met the prerequisites.

Elective courses in any curriculum may be taken from any field and are decided upon in consultation with the adviser.


To improve graduation rates, the North Carolina General Assembly (Senate Bill 27, Section 89(a), 1993 Session Laws) mandated that the “Board of Governors shall require constituent institutions to set a goal of increasing to 15 the average number of credit hours per term taken by full-time undergraduates.”  Since most undergraduate degrees require 126 s.h., a student must average approximately 16 s.h. per term to graduate in four years.  Students are encouraged to be mindful of this recommended course load when developing class schedules.

A student may take 18 s.h. of credit per semester without restrictions. With the approval of the adviser and the departmental chairperson or dean, a student who has earned an average of B in all work may take 19 or 20 s.h. per semester.  The approval for extra-hour load must be signed on the registration form by the chairperson or dean concerned.

A student desiring to enroll for more than 20 s.h. must secure, in addition to the above signatures, approval from the dean of Undergraduate Studies.

A student may take 7 s.h. each summer term without restrictions; with the written approval of the dean of Undergraduate Studies, a student who has earned an average of B in all work may take extra hours.

A student with a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 and in the semester or summer term of graduation may take extra hours with the approval of the departmental chairperson or dean and  the dean of Undergraduate Studies.

It is suggested that students who work more than 20 hours per week carry no more than 9 s.h. of course work and that students who work 15-20 hours per week carry no more than 12 s.h. of course work.


Auditing a course consists of attendance at classes and listening but taking no part in the class.  An auditor is not responsible for any assignments, nor is he or she allowed to take any tests or examinations.  However, in order to have the audited course recorded on the official transcript, a student must attend classes regularly.  An auditor may not enroll in a participation course (art classes, laboratories, etc.).  Under no circumstances will a grade be assigned, evaluations be made, or performance reports be issued on a student auditing a course.  Auditing a course or part of a course is contingent upon the approval of the instructor and the appropriate departmental chairperson or school dean.  Students may not register to audit a course until the last day of the drop/add period.

Persons who wish to attend university classes without earning credit must be admitted to the university before seeking approval to audit any course.  Individuals enrolled as nondegree undergraduate students will be assigned to the Office of Undergraduate Studies for assistance with registration.  The applicants shall then complete the prescribed procedure for registering through the Office of the Registrar and pay the audit fee to the cashier’s office before attendance in classes is permitted.

Students regularly enrolled in the university wishing to audit course(s) must initiate the approval process with their adviser.


Only under extenuating circumstances will a student be allowed to repeat a course in which he or she has earned a grade of C and then only with the written approval of his or her unit administrator and the dean of Undergraduate Studies.  A student who repeats a course he or she has passed in order to raise the grade will receive the original grade, hours attempted, hours earned, and grade points.  The student will also receive the raised grade, hours attempted, and grade points.  The raised grade, or last grade, stands.  A grade of F as the raised grade will result in the loss of the original hours and grade points; a student receiving an F as the raised grade must repeat the course if credit is required for graduation.

A student who repeats a course he or she has failed will receive the failure (hours attempted and no grade points) and the raised grade with hours attempted, hours earned, and grade points. 


A student is permitted to use the Grade Replacement Policy a maximum of three times for 1000- and 2000-level courses in which he or she has earned a grade of D or F.  For example, a student may replace a grade in three different courses or may replace a single course grade a maximum of three times or a combination thereof not to exceed the limits of the policy.  Approval to use the policy will not be given if a student wishes to repeat a course after he or she has successfully completed an advanced course covering the same or similar material, for example, a course in the same academic discipline for which the repeated course is a prerequisite.

To replace a grade, the student must request a grade replacement on the on-line registration form, the schedule change form, or the grade replacement form; register for the course during the registration period; and submit the form to the Office of the Registrar or the Office of Undergraduate Studies.  The form must be submitted no later than the last day to drop a course(s) or withdraw from school without grades of the semester in which the student wishes to implement the policy. Although the original grade will not be used in determining the GPA of the student, the original grade will remain on the student's permanent academic record and will be included in the calculation for consideration of honors.  The replacement grade, or last grade, stands.  Students receiving an F on the replacement grade must repeat the course if credit is required for graduation.  In the event that the original grade was a D, no additional credit hours will be awarded.

The Grade Replacement Policy is effective for courses originally taken fall 1994 and thereafter.


Students desiring to withdraw officially from the university should apply for withdrawal to the Office of the Dean of Students.  After the student has obtained the signatures of the various officials designated on the form, it must be submitted to the Office of the Dean of Students for final approval. Students withdrawing for medical/counseling reasons should complete the procedure within thirty days after the last class attendance. All other students withdrawing should complete this procedure immediately after the last class attendance.  After classes have ended, no withdrawal, except in the case of severe medical emergency, can be filed.

During the first thirty class days of a semester, a student may withdraw from school without receiving grades for courses in which he or she is enrolled.  After the first thirty class days, a student withdrawing from school shall receive a grade of F for all classes which he or she is failing at the time unless, in the judgment of the dean of Undergraduate Studies or the director of Continuing Studies, as appropriate, the failures were caused by circumstances beyond the student’s control.


A student who desires to change his or her program of study involving transfer from one college, school, or department of the university to another should complete the following:

1. obtain from the current adviser the advising folder;

2. have the academic record reviewed in the receiving department, the change of major/minor recorded in the student data base, and a new adviser assigned; and

3. deliver the advising folder to the new adviser.


Only under unavoidable and exceptional circumstances will substitution for or exemption from the prescribed curricula be permitted. If it becomes necessary to request deviation from the prescribed course of study, the student should consult the dean of the college or school or the chairperson of the department of the student's major. The dean or departmental chairperson will petition by letter to the registrar for substitutions or exceptions sought and will state the reasons for the change.

Any deviations from the applicable published degree requirements must have the approval of the appropriate departmental chairperson or school dean and the approval of the dean of Undergraduate Studies.  Students transferring from other colleges who desire to substitute courses taken elsewhere for courses prescribed at the university must submit such petition.


The university operates on the semester plan. The fall and spring semesters are each approximately fifteen weeks in length.  The summer session is divided into two consecutive terms.  Credit hours to be earned in each course are noted for each course listed.

Courses offered in nontraditional formats, e.g., concentrated or abbreviated time periods, must be designed to ensure an opportunity for preparation, reflection, and analysis concerning the subject matter.  At least one calendar week of reflection and analysis should be provided to students for each semester hour of undergraduate credit awarded.

Credit will not be allowed for courses which substantially duplicate courses already completed.


Students regularly enrolled or formerly enrolled in the university may obtain credit by examination in a course in which they have had no class attendance or semester standing provided the course has been determined by the offering department or school to be an appropriate class for credit without attendance. Permission to take the examination must be obtained in advance from the dean of the school or chairperson of the department in which the course is offered and must be approved by the dean of Undergraduate Studies.  Examinations are not permitted in courses in which a student has previously been enrolled as a regular student or as an auditor. (No person is allowed to attend class or receive class instruction without being properly registered either for credit or for audit.) The applicant must pay to the university cashier in advance of the examination a fee of $10 per semester hour; this fee is not refundable. The petition, receipted by the university cashier, must be shown to the instructor conducting the examination. The instructor administers and reports the results of the examination to the Office of the Registrar within one week of the date of approval by the dean of Undergraduate Studies.  Credits earned under this regulation are recorded with the grade achieved on the examination.  Credit earned by examination may not be used to reduce the minimum residence requirement.


Upon Admission

A student transferring to the university from another college or university will have transcripts evaluated by the Office of Admissions during the admissions process.  Credit will be awarded for all transferable courses for which a grade of C or better was earned.  This evaluation will then be reviewed by the student's academic unit.  It is only upon the review by the academic unit that the student will know what additional courses are necessary to meet degree requirements.

Students who have satisfactorily completed basic military training may receive credit for the exercise and sport science and health courses required for general education upon submitting a DD-214 or DD-295 to the Office of Admissions.  Students who have completed service schools while on active duty with the military may request an evaluation through the Office of Admissions.  Credit will be awarded in accord with the American Council on Education recommendations provided that the credit recommended is at the baccalaureate level and applicable to the general education requirements, to the student's declared major field of study, or to the elective hours prescribed within the student's designated program of study.

Students who have prior military training (active duty, JROTC, College ROTC, reserve, or National Guard) may be eligible for 6 s.h. of credit if pursuing a commission through the AFROTC, AROTC, Marine Corps Platoon Leaders course, or Coast Guard Basic Program.  Additional information may be obtained from the Office of Admissions.

Following Admission

Students who have a GPA of less than 2.0 or who are academically ineligible to return to East Carolina University must complete at an accredited institution 30 s.h. or 45 q.h. of transferable work and maintain a minimum  grade of C on all transferable work in order for the credit to be acceptable in transfer to East Carolina University.  Although credit may be allowed for courses the equivalent of which the student was previously enrolled in at East Carolina University, duplicate credit will not be granted under any circumstances.  For additional regulations applying to transfer credit, see Section 3, Admission.

Currently Enrolled East Carolina University Students

Approval must be granted in writing by the student’s dean or departmental chairperson and the Office of Undergraduate Studies prior to enrollment in any course at any other institution.  An official transcript must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar immediately upon completion of the course(s). Only courses in which the student earns a C or better will be accepted in transfer.

Approval will not be granted if the student has less than a cumulative GPA of 2.0 at East Carolina.
Approval will not be granted if the student is ineligible to return to the university because of disciplinary action.
Approval will not be granted if the student has any outstanding obligations to any department or office of the university.
Approval will not be granted for courses in which credit has been previously earned.
Approval will not be granted for correspondence courses in the student's major field.
Approval will not be granted for correspondence courses beyond 15 percent of the total hours required for graduation.  (See Independent Study, below.)

With specific authorization as indicated below, approval may be granted in the following instances.

If the student has been previously enrolled in a comparable course, specific approval must be granted by the chairperson of the department offering the course and the Office of Undergraduate Studies.
If the student has attained junior standing and wishes to attend a two-year institution, specific approval must be granted by the Office of Undergraduate Studies.
If the student has previously completed 60 s.h. or more at a two-year institution, specific approval must be granted by the Office of Undergraduate Studies prior to permitting the transfer of additional credit from a two-year institution.
If the student wishes to be enrolled concurrently at ECU and in correspondence courses, extension courses, or courses at another institution, both the academic unit and the Office of Undergraduate Studies must grant specific approval.

Independent Study

Independent study is defined as any program of study without direct instruction in a classroom setting (excluding internships).  It may include directed readings, special topics courses, or independent study of an existing course.  The use of independent study should be limited to two occasions:  when a student wishes to pursue a topic of study which is not available in an approved course or when a course is needed to satisfy graduation requirements but the course is not being offered in a timely manner to satisfy those requirements.  Independent study and correspondence credits may not exceed 15 percent of the total hours required for the degree. (See Currently Enrolled East Carolina University Students, above.) Credit earned through independent study cannot be used to reduce the minimum residence requirement.

All independent study courses should be set up as a part of the departmental schedule of courses for the respective term.  Independent study sections of normally offered courses should be appropriately noted by the section number.


Final Examinations

Final examinations will be held at the close of each term in all courses. There will be no departure from the printed schedule of examinations.  Changes for individual emergencies of a serious nature will be made only with the approval of the instructor, the student's major chairperson or dean, and the dean of Undergraduate Studies.  The departmental chairperson or the school dean will, if a serious emergency is believed to exist, forward a written request to the dean of Undergraduate Studies, setting forth the nature of the emergency. A student who is absent from an examination without an excuse may be given a grade of F in the course.  An incomplete (I) will be given in the case of a student absent from the final examination who has presented a satisfactory excuse to the instructor or an official university excuse from the Office of the Dean of Students.

Intermediate Tests and Quizzes

Students who are absent from intermediate tests and quizzes with an excuse acceptable to the instructor or an official university excuse from the Office of the Dean of Students will be given a makeup test or an excuse from taking the test at the discretion of the instructor.


Re-examination for the purpose of removing a failure is permitted only in the case of graduating seniors who are in their last term before their scheduled commencement and who are passing the course at the time the final examination is given. Only one re-examination per course is permissible.

A grade change resulting from re-examination must be on file in the Office of the Registrar one week after the originally scheduled examination.


In order to graduate in eight semesters of attendance, a student in a typical degree program (120-128 s.h.) must average 15-16 s.h. of credit per semester.  A regular or full-time student is required to schedule at least 12 s.h. per semester. Students who register for no more than 11 s.h. per semester are classified as part-time students. Students will be classified as to class standing as follows:

1-29 semester hours credit:  Freshman 60-89 semester hours credit:  Junior
30-59 semester hours credit:  Sophomore 90 or more semester hours credit:  Senior

Students must meet grade (quality) point requirements to be eligible for readmission for a succeeding semester at East Carolina University.  (See Scholastic Eligibility Standards, below.)


Grade Points and Grade Point Average

A grade (quality) point system based on all hours attempted at East Carolina University is used to calculate student scholarship. The following grade symbols are currently in use for all undergraduate courses: A-excellent, B-good, C-average, D-barely passed, F-failed (Course must be repeated to secure credit.), I-incomplete, N-audited. A grade of I is given for a deficiency in quantity, not quality, of work.

Grade points are computed by multiplying the number of semester-hour credits by four for courses in which a grade of A is earned, by three for a grade of B, by two for a grade of C, by one for a grade of D. No grade points are given for a grade of F, but hours attempted are recorded for each attempt of a given course.  (See Grade Replacement Policy, above.)  The GPA is obtained by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of semester hours attempted.

Removal of Incompletes

A grade of I must be removed during the next semester (not counting summer session) in which the student is enrolled in the university, or it automatically becomes a failure. The instructor will set a time for the removal of the incomplete, in no case later than three weeks prior to the end of the semester.  Instructors must submit the proper removal of incomplete form to the Office of the Registrar at least two weeks prior to the end of the semester.  If the student does not return to school, the I must be removed within one year, or it automatically becomes an F.  An incomplete may not be removed by repeating the course. If a student enrolls in a course in which he or she has an incomplete, the I will automatically become an F. No student will be allowed to graduate with an incomplete on his or her record.


The following eligibility standards are effective for students initially matriculating at ECU beginning fall semester 1999 and for readmitted students enrolling fall semester 1999 and thereafter.  Retention requirements are based on hours attempted at East Carolina University and/or transfer hours from another institution.  The minimum scholastic requirements to avoid probation and/or suspension are as follows:

1-29 attempted hours and/or transfer hours, 1.6 GPA

30-59 attempted hours and/or transfer hours, 1.8 GPA

60-74 attempted hours and/or transfer hours, 1.9 GPA

75 or more attempted and/or transfer hours, 2.0 GPA

Second undergraduate degree, 2.0 GPA.

A student who possesses a baccalaureate degree and who is working toward a second baccalaureate degree must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 on all work attempted on the second baccalaureate degree.  Certain academic programs require a GPA greater than 2.0 for admission.  (See specific major requirements.) 

Academic Standing Codes

Grade point calculations are made and the report is posted to the web and mailed to the student at the end of each semester and each summer term.  The report indicates the following as appropriate.

1. Removed from Academic Probation

2. Academic Warning:  This code indicates that the student is not performing at an acceptable level for progression toward graduation.  (Warning is assigned to students whose cumulative grade point average is less than 2.0 [required for graduation] but meets the minimum GPA required for his or her retention period.)

3. Academic Probation:  This code indicates that the student has not met the required scholastic standards. If the deficiency is not removed by the end of the next semester of enrollment, the student will be suspended unless, during the semester of probation, the student earns a 2.5 or higher GPA on 12 or more attempted hours or the student's cumulative GPA results in a deficit of 5 or fewer quality points from the total required by the retention period and the number of attempted hours.  Letter designations (A, B, C, D) following the probation number 3 indicate a probation period after a suspension.

4. A.  Academic Suspension:  This code indicates the first time that the student's scholastic performance has not met the requirements necessary to continue enrollment. The student is suspended for one semester followed by readmission on probation.

   B.  Academic Suspension:  This code indicates the status of a student who has become academically ineligible for a second time. A student becoming ineligible a second time will be suspended for one academic year (two consecutive semesters).

   C.  Academic Suspension:  This code indicates the status of a student who has become academically ineligible for a third time. If a third suspension occurs, the student will be readmitted only by successful appeal to the Readmission Appeals Committee.

   D.  Nontraditional Student Suspension:  This code indicates the status of a student who has become academically ineligible because of failure to satisfy retention stipulations within the limits established by the Performance-Based Admission Policy.  For readmission options available to students in this status, consult the nontraditional student readmission portion of the readmission policies below.

Students on probation or suspended from the university are encouraged to attend summer school at East Carolina University in order to progress toward good academic standing.

Warning and Probation

A student will be placed on academic warning if his or her cumulative GPA is less than 2.00 but meets the minimum GPA required for his or her retention period.

A student will be placed on academic probation if he or she does not meet the current academic standards, above.

A student will remain on academic warning or probation until the required GPA is obtained or the student is suspended.

ECU Undergraduate Catalog 2000-2001
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