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Academic Regulations


All students returning to Delaware State University following the current semester of attendance should preregister during the period prescribed in the Academic Calendar. Returning students who do not register prior to on-site registration will be assessed a failure to preregister fee. To participate in online registration, students must be advised and obtain their unique alternate registration PIN from their academic department (this PIN is different from the PIN needed to view grades, students accounts and financial aid information). A new registration PIN is assigned to each student for each semester to ensure that all matriculating students are advised prior to registering each term.



Every student is expected to complete registration before the first day of classes in each semester. Students are advised to see their assigned departmental advisor during the pre-registration period specified in the Academic Calendar to select courses for the next semester. Students are officially registered for a course only when they have completed all procedures applying to registration including making full-payment or satisfactory payment arrangements for any outstanding balance. Students not officially registered for a course will not receive credit for the course at the end of the semester.

Students who fail to register prior to the Late Registration period (which begins on the first day of classes) are charged a late registration fee. Returning students who register during the late registration period are assessed a failure to preregister fee and a late registration fee.


Online Registration

It is required that all degree seeking students consult with an advisor prior to registering. Students may have their academic departments continue to enter their registrations and schedule changes (drop/adds) or they may register and make adjustments to their schedule online. To obtain their unique “alternate registration PIN” for registering online, students must see their academic advisor after building their course selections on the pre-printed Schedule Request Form provided in the Registration Guide. To register online, students may visit the University’s my.desu.edu web site.

Students may view their transcripts as well as student accounts and financial aid information through my.desu.edu web site listed above. Unofficial transcripts and schedules may also be printed.


Change in Major or Personal Data

Students must submit their change of major and personal data (address or telephone number) changes on the appropriate forms available in the Office of Records and Registration as often as necessary.


Credit Hours

Academic work in University courses is measured in semester hours of credit. A semester hour is equal to fifty minutes of recitation or lecture work per week for one semester. A minimum of two hours of laboratory work yields one semester hour.

Credit will not be accepted for a course in which a student is not officially registered, nor will credit be granted for the same course twice.


Classification of Students

0-29 Hours Freshman
30-59 Hours Sophomore
60-89 Hours Junior
90 Hours and above Senior


Grading System

A grade is reported for each course in which a student is enrolled. The grade is an indication of the quality of the student’s performance in a course.

Mid-semester and final grades will be issued to all students for all courses enrolled. Final grades become a part of the student’s permanent record and are used in computing grade point averages. If a student repeats a course, the highest grade in the course is calculated in the grade point average (GPA). The lower grade earned in the course is disregarded when calculating the GPA, but is not deleted from the student’s record. On the student’s transcript, an “E” placed next to a course indicated the repetition of a course excluded from the GPA and an “I” indicates the repetition of a course included in the GPA. The GPA is computed by dividing the total number of quality points by the total number of GPA hours earned. Non-traditional grades including grades of I, W, WA, AU, S, U, and P are not computed in the GPA.

Grade changes must be approved by the dean of the college or school in which the student is a major during the semester of instruction immediately following the semester the grade was issued. Grade changes for undecided majors must be approved by the dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. All grade changes submitted later than the succeeding semester must be approved by the provost and vice president for academic affairs. Approved grade changes will be forwarded to the Office of Records and Registration for processing.

The grading system at Delaware State University is shown below:

Grade Quality Points Explanation
A 4.00 Excellent
B 3.00 Good
C 2.00 Fair
D 1.00 Poor
F 0.00 Failure
WF 0.00 Withdrawal/Fail
I (Not Computed in GPA) Incomplete
W (Not Computed in GPA) Withdrew
WA (Not Computed in GPA) Administrative Drop
AU (Not Computed in GPA) Audit - Not Taken For Credit
S (Not Computed in GPA) Satisfactory
U (Not Computed in GPA) Unsatisfactory
P (Not Computed in GPA) Pass


Removal of Incompletes

Incomplete course work due to reasons clearly beyond the control of the student will yield the grade “I.” This grade must be removed by the end of the first six weeks of the next semester, otherwise the grade “I” is automatically changed to “F” by the Office of Records and Registration.

Academically suspended students who have “incompletes” may register only if they have removed the incompletes and achieved the necessary 2.00 average no later than the last day of the late registration period.

No student may graduate with an “I” grade or In Progress on his or her transcript.


Academic Load

A normal load is twelve to nineteen (12-19) credit hours per semester. The normal load may be exceeded under the following circumstances:

  1. On the recommendation of the Academic Advisor, the Department Chairperson may approve as many as nineteen (19) hours if the curriculum of the department specifically calls for more than eighteen (18) hours.
  2. On the recommendation of the Academic Advisor and on the approval of both the Department Chairperson and the appropriate Academic Dean, a student may schedule an overload not to exceed twenty-three (23) hours if all of the following conditions are met: 1) The student has a 3.00 cumulative average (minimum); 2) if during the previous semester, the student carried twelve (12) or more hours; and 3) if while carrying 12 or more hours during the previous semester, he/she did not fail any course and earned a 3.00 grade point average (minimum).


Overload Fee

For all course overloads, students will pay a fee equivalent to the cost-per-credit for each hour that exceeds nineteen (19) credits.


Full-Time Status

The minimum course load for full-time status is twelve (12) credit hours per semester. A full-time student is normally expected to complete thirty (30) credit hours of course-work each academic year (Fall, Spring and Summer terms); and must complete a minimum of twenty-four (24) hours of course work each academic year to qualify for financial aid. In addition, full-time students must meet the academic regulations stated elsewhere on this page.


Class Attendance Policy

Regular class attendance is a vital part of the educational process. Students are required to attend all classes. If a faculty member chooses to evaluate attendance as part of a grade for a course, such a policy must be written in the syllabus, which is distributed at the beginning of a course. The policy must state what part of the course grade is based on attendance and how individual absences will be assessed. If a faculty member declines to integrate attendance as part of a course grade, under no circumstances may a student’s final grade be reduced solely because of class absences.

The Office of the Provost and Vice-President for Academic Affairs issues excuses for students who are absent from classes due to participation in official University related activities or on University related travel. In all other cases, only the instructor can approve a student’s request to be excused from class.


Adding and Dropping Classes Online

Eligible students without financial holds are permitted to add and drop classes online at the University’s my.desu.edu web site. The approval to adjust the course schedule online must be obtained from the student’s academic advisor prior to going online to adjust his/her schedule.

Adding Classes

To add a class, students may go online after obtaining approval from their academic advisor or department chair or follow the steps below:

  1. Obtain a Notice of Class Change form (Drop/Add Slip) from the academic department
  2. Complete the student and class information parts of the form
  3. Obtain the signatures of the appropriate instructor and the appropriate advisor/chairperson
  4. Submit the completed form to the Office of Records and Registration. The effective date of the add is the date the slip is filed in the Records Office

The deadline for adding classes is outlined in the Academic Calendar. Exceptions to the deadline period set forth shall be allowed only in cases involving extraordinary circumstances. Such exceptions shall be at the sole discretion of the appropriate academic dean.


Dropping Classes

To drop a class, students may go online after obtaining approval from their academic advisor or department chair or follow the steps below:

1. Through the End of Late Registration

a. Obtain the Notice of Class Change form (Drop Slip) from the academic department.
b. Have instructors and advisors/chairs sign and date the form
c. Submit the form to the Office of Records and Registration. The effective date of the drop is the date the slip is filed in the Records Office. Courses dropped prior to the end of the Late Registration Period will not appear on the student’s grade report or transcript. See the Refund Policy statement to determine financial responsibility, if any, for courses dropped during this period.

2. After Late Registration through the Scheduled Last Day for Dropping Classes

a. Obtain the Notice of Class Change form (Drop Slip) from the academic department.
b. Have instructors and advisors/chairs sign and date the form
c. Submit the form to the Office of Records and Registration. The effective date of the drop is the date the slip is filed in the Records Office. The dropped course will appear on the grade report and transcript with a grade of “W” for “Withdrew.” See the Refund Policy statement to determine financial responsibility, if any, for courses dropped during this period.

3. After the Scheduled Last Day for Dropping Classes and up to the Last Week of Classes.

a. Obtain the Notice of Class Change form (Drop Slip) from the academic department
b. Have instructors and advisors/chairs sign and date the form
c. Students must obtain the signature of the dean of the school/college. The dean is the only University official who may approve the dropping of a class at this point in the semester. The appropriate dean shall permit students who officially request to drop specific classes from their academic schedules to do so only in cases involving extraordinary circumstances that are clearly beyond the control of the students making such a request. In no case shall a student be permitted to drop a class for any reason that relates exclusively to academic performance.
d. Submit the form to the Office of Records and Registration. The course will appear on the grade report and transcript with a grade of “WA” for “Administrative Withdrawal.”


Withdrawal from the University

To withdraw from the University, students must follow the steps listed below:

Official Withdrawal from the University

  1. Obtain a Withdrawal From the University form from the Registrar Office
  2. Complete the form in its entirety and turn it in to a Records and Registration representative.
  3. A student who withdraws from the University on or prior to the last day to withdraw from the University will receive a grade of “W” in each course for which he/she is enrolled at that time.

Administrative Withdrawal from the University

If a student, for some compelling reason (such as a documented extreme personal difficulty or documented medical reason), requests to be administratively withdrawn from the University beyond the official withdrawal deadline  for a given semester , then that student must follow the procedure listed below. 

Administrative withdrawal from the University is rarely granted, but some students’ circumstances may require it.  The provost and vice-president for Academic Affairs confirm the approval for administrative withdrawal from the University:

Student must submit in writing the request for administrative withdrawal from the University, along with documentation, to the appropriate academic dean.  The request must state the reason(s) for the request and specify the semester to be withdrawn. 

  1. The dean submits his or her recommendation to the provost and vice-president for Academic Affairs.
  2. If the provost and vice-president for Academic Affairs approve the request, then the student is reported to the Office of Records and Registration as “Administratively Withdrawn” and a grade of “WA” is assigned for all courses taken during that semester.  The provost and vice-president for Academic Affairs will also inform the student in writing of his/her decision. 

A student who withdraws from the University on or prior to the last day to withdraw from the University will receive a grade of “W” in each course for which he/she is enrolled at that time.  A student who officially withdraws from the University at any time after the last publicized date for withdrawal from the University will receive a “WA” grade in all courses for that semester.

Note:  If a student has received financial aid, including a refund, from Title IV funds and completed less than sixty (60) percent of the semester from which he/she wishes to withdraw, then that student must refund the percentage of financial aid corresponding to the percentage of the semester the student has not completed.



Persons who wish to attend a course without receiving credit for it must obtain the approval of the instructor and the academic advisor. As auditors, students are entitled to the advisory services of the instructor. Persons with a full-time load pay no additional fees for auditing. Persons carrying less than a twelve (12) credit-hour load are charged the per credit hour fee for the course. The final grade of “AU” is assigned to the course and does not affect the grade point average. Courses taken for audit do not count toward full-time enrollment nor for financial aid eligibility.

Official requests to audit a course are accepted by the Office of Records and Registration during the period between pre-registration and late registration (the period for submitting a request to audit a course coincides with the add period). The Notice of Class Change form (Drop/Add Slip) should be used to change a course to audit status.


Major Academic Advisors

Each student will be assigned a faculty advisor by their academic department. At a minimum, the advisor will meet with the student each semester during preregistration and officially approve the program of study before the student registers online or in the academic department.


Satisfactory Academic Program

Please visit the SAP page to view the regulations


Academic Probation, Suspension, and Dismissal

A student on probation who fails to earn a 2.00 average at the following semester will be suspended academically.  At the expiration of the period a student may apply for readmission on probation.  The student must complete a minimum of nine (9) semester hours with a grade point average of 2.00 (“C”) or better during the semester of his/her reinstatement. 

If a student on probation fails to earn the necessary 2.00 average, he/she will be dismissed from the University. He/she may apply to the Office of Admissions for reinstatement if he or she successfully completes twelve semester hours with an average of 2.00 (“C”)  in summer school at the University or attends another accredited institution and completes twenty-four semester hours with a grade point average of 2.00 (“C”) or better.

A student on probation will be allowed to take no more than thirteen semester hours.  Students on academic probation and have incompletes in courses taken the previous semester will not be permitted to register until the incompletes are removed and an average of 2.00 is achieved.

A student whose grade point average is below 1.70 at the end of any semester shall be placed on academic probation for the succeeding semester unless the student’s cumulative grade point average is 2.00 or greater.  A student on probation is ineligible to hold elective positions or to represent the University in any capacity. Students with academic probationary status or students who are academically suspended may attend summer school at Delaware State University.  The grades earned in summer school will be computed with the grades of the last semester that the student was enrolled to determine the academic standing of the student. 


General Probation

Any student who has been dismissed, suspended, or placed on disciplinary probation may not represent the University in any public activity nor hold any elective office or appointment of responsibility during the semester affected.


Final Examinations

Examinations are required in each course. Final examinations will be administered during the final examination period in the academic calendar of that academic year. A final examination schedule is available on myDESU.


Foreign Language

All students are required to take at least three credit hours of one foreign language to satisfy the General Education Program requirements.


Lifetime Fitness and Wellness

All students are required to take a two (2) credit hour lifetime fitness and wellness course as part of the General Education curricula. This course is modified when the need exists for those individuals who are unable to participate in normal physical activity or for those individuals who are non-traditional students.



A student may select the minimum designated number of electives based on interests and major departmental requirements. Selecting required or free electives should be done in consultation with the faculty advisor.


Transcript Requests

A transcript of a student’s academic record is released to a third party upon the written signed request of the student. A Transcript Request form is available on the web site. In accordance with the Family Educational and Privacy Act (FERPA), exceptions to this include release of academic records to University officials with legitimate educational interests and transfer institutions.

An official transcript, one bearing the seal and Registrar’s signature, is sent from the Office of Records and Registration directly to the official or institution specified by the student. All enrolled students are entitled to five free transcripts during their matriculation at the university. Once enrolled students have exceeded their first five free transcripts, they are to pay the normal fee for transcripts. The transcript request fee is $10.00 per transcript. A request for a transcript normally will be processed within five (3) to seven (5) business days, except during peak work periods such as registration, preregistration, final examinations, and commencement.

Transcripts submitted by the student from other institutions become the property of Delaware State University and are not reissued or copied for release. Requests for other institutions’ transcripts must be made directly to the respective institution.


Notification of Rights under FERPA for Delaware State University Students

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. They are:

(1) The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access.

Students should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The University official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the University official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

(2) The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading.

Students may ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading.

If the University decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

(3) The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.

A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.

Upon request, the University discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.

(4) The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Delaware State University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-4605


Directory Information

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act permits the release of directory-type information to third parties outside the institution without written consent of the student provided the student has been given the opportunity to withhold such disclosure.

The University releases, upon inquiry to third parties outside the University, directory information without written consent of the student. Directory information includes name, address, telephone number, college, class, major, dates of attendance, and degree, honors, and awards conferred. Students may withhold directory information by going to the Office of Records and Registration.

Note: While the withholding request may be made at any time, students wishing to have directory information withheld from the student directory should submit their requests no later than three weeks prior to the first day of fall semester classes.


Academic Honors

The President’s and Dean’s Lists

The President’s List will honor those students who have distinguished themselves by earning a 4.0 in all their classes for the semester. Students must carry and pass a minimum of twelve (12) semester hours, earning a grade of “A” in all classes.

The Dean’s List includes students who have earned a scholastic average of 3.25 to 3.99 and have completed twelve (12) or more degree (earned) credit hours at the end of the semester

Any grade of Incomplete will disqualify a student from the President’s List or the Dean’s List.

Graduation With Honors

Honor is awarded at graduation to the candidate who has attended the University for at least three years (90 semester hours) and has met the following criteria:

SUMMA CUM LAUDE for a scholastic average of 3.75 or above.
MAGNA CUM LAUDE for a scholastic average of 3.50 to 3.74.
CUM LAUDE for a scholastic average of 3.25 to 3.49.

Honorable Mention for Transfer Students

Honorable Mention is awarded to transfer students if they complete the last two years of academic work toward graduation (60 semester hours) at Delaware State University and if the lower of the two indices is a scholastic average of 3.50 or greater.


Graduation Requirements

Courses and Credits

The minimum number of semester hours required for graduation is one hundred and twenty (120). This number varies with many of the major programs. Candidates must satisfactorily complete the requirements of the major study area in which they are enrolled to be eligible for graduation. Of the minimum total of 120 semester hours, fifty-two (52) hours of General Education courses must be completed by the candidate. General Education Program Requirements are available for viewing on the web site.

Grades and Grade Point Averages

To qualify for graduation, the following grades and grade point averages must be earned by the candidate:

  1. A minimum overall grade point average of 2.00 (“C”)
  2. A minimum grade of 2.00 (“C”) in each course in a field of specialization.
  3. A minimum of 2.00 (“C”) grade point average for the last thirty (30) semester hours of work at the University.

Residence Requirement

A candidate for the baccalaureate degree must complete the last thirty (30) semester hours of credit at Delaware State University. However, a student may enroll in six to eight (6-8) hours of courses at another institution upon approval of the Department Chairperson and the Academic Dean.

Students who transfer from other institutions must earn a minimum of thirty (30) semester hours at Delaware State University.

Double Degrees

A student can be awarded two (2) degrees at the same time only if the degrees are different (e.g., Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts degrees). If a student is pursuing two (2) fields of study for which the same degree is awarded, then only one (1) degree will be granted, but both fields of study will be listed on the degree. To be eligible for a second degree, (1) course work must be taken in two fields of study and; (2) the student must satisfy the curriculum requirements of both departments.

A student returning to Delaware State University for a second degree or major must officially declare a major in the second area and need only satisfy the additional requirement for the second major in order for the second baccalaureate degree to be conferred.

Diplomas are ordered by degree. One diploma will be ordered for each degree earned and will not be issued to a candidate who has not satisfied all financial obligations to the institution, including loan programs administered by the University.

Application for Graduation

Students who intend to participate in Commencement exercises in December or May should file an application for graduation and audit in the Office of Records and Registration by September 16 (for December) and February 3 (for May).  Students who intend to graduate in the summer should file an application for graduation and audit in the Office of Records and Registration by August 1.  Each student who applies for graduation will be assessed a graduation fee (NO EXCEPTIONS).  There is no guarantee that diplomas or regalia will be available for the graduation exercise for those students who apply after the deadline.

Students who have met degree requirements are eligible for graduation at the close of any semester.  Degrees are awarded on the students’ transcripts upon completion of all requirements with the actual award date:  December 15 for fall, May 15 for spring, and August 15 for summer.

Degrees are conferred twice a year during the University’s annual Commencement exercises in December and May.  All summer and December graduates are eligible to participate in the graduation exercises in December and all others in May; students can only participate in one.    Diplomas will be mailed 6-8 weeks after the award date and Official transcripts will be available after the award date.  Any student who fails to graduate for their appropriate term will need to re-submit a new application and audit for the new graduation date (NO EXCEPTIONS).

Participation in Graduation Exercises

Students may participate in the Commencement exercises only if they satisfy the following conditions:

File the application and audit for graduation by the application deadline (see application calendar).

  1. Enroll in and successfully complete all academic requirements for graduation prior to Commencement.
  2. Satisfy all financial obligations to the University.
  3. Complete the Financial Aid Exit.
  4. Resolve all “incomplete” and “in progress” from transcript.
  5.  Satisfy all holds placed on the student’s account.

A student is ultimately responsible for his or her own academic progress.


Campus Security

Delaware State University is committed to assisting all members of the Delaware State University community in providing for their own safety and security.

Information regarding campus security and personal safety including topics such as, crime prevention, university police law enforcement authority, crime reporting policies, crime statistics for the most recent three-year period, and disciplinary procedure is available on the DSU Police Department website

If you would like a booklet containing this information, you can contact a representative of the DSU Department of Public Safety at 1200 N. DuPont Highway, Public Safety Bldg., Dover, DE 19901 or by phone at (302) 857-6290.