Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
|How long is the “academic semester”?|
It is a term of no less than (15) weeks of instruction not including the registration and final examination periods.
|What is the “summer semester”?|
A Period of instruction not exceeding (8) weeks not including the registration and final examination periods. The weekly duration of each course in the summer semesters is twice its duration during a regular academic semester.
|What is the “academic year”|
It is two regular semesters and a summer semester, if any.
|What is the “academic level”|
It indicates the study level in accordance with the specifications of each approved degree plan
|What is the “degree plan”|
It is a combination of required, technical elective and free elective courses that constitute the total number of credit hours required for graduation in a major. The student has to successfully pass the specified courses in order to earn the degree in that major.
|What is the “course”|
It is a subject of study within a certain academic level of the approved degree plan in each major. Each course has a number, code, title and a detailed description of its contents which distinguishes it from the other courses.
|What is the “credit hour”?|
Each of the weekly lectures or clinical lessons with a duration not less than 50 minutes or a laboratory session or field study of not less than 100 minutes duration is one credit hour.
|What is the “academic probation”|
It is a notification given to a student with a cumulative GPA below the minimum acceptable limit
|What is the class work score|
It is the score which reflects the student’s standing during a semester according to his performance in the examinations, research and other activities related to a particular course.
|What is the “final examination”|
It is an examination in the course, given once at the end of every semester.
|What is the “final examination score”|
The score attained by the student in each course in the final examination.
|What is the “final score”|
It is the total of the class work score plus the final examination score calculated for each course out of a total grade of 100.
|What is the “course grade”|
It is a percentage, or alphabetical letter, assigned to a student, indicating the final grade he received in a course.
|What are the “incomplete grade” and “in progress grade”|
Incomplete grade is a provisional grade assigned to each course in which a student fails to complete the requirements by the required date. This is indicated in the academic record by the letter grade “IC”.
In progress grade is a provisional grade assigned to each course which requires more than one semester to complete. The letter grade “IP” is assigned in this case.
|What is the difference between semester GPA and cumulative GPA”|
Semester GPA is the total quality points the student has achieved, divided by the credit hours assigned for all the courses the student has taken in any semester.
Cumulative GPA is the total quality points the student has achieved in all courses he has taken since his enrollment at the university, divided by the total number of credit hours assigned for these courses
|How is the “quality points” calculated|
by multiplying the credit hours by the grade earned in each course
|17.How are the semester GPA and cumulative GPA calculated|
- They are calculated as follows:
|What is a “transcript”|
It is an official document that includes all the courses a student has taken at the University as of the date of its printing. It indicates course codes, numbers and credit hours, the grades earned by the student, semester GPA, and cumulative GPA.
In addition, it includes the list of courses and credits transferred, if any
|What is “the Cooperative Program” and when it is completed|
It is a period not exceeding (28) weeks of on-the-job training spent by the student, as per the requirement of his major. The student must complete the cooperative program before his last semester at the University
|What is “Summer Training” and when it is competed|
A period not exceeding (8) weeks of on-the-job training spent by the student, as per the requirement of his major. The student must complete the summer training before his last semester at the University
|What is the Preparatory Year “Prep-Year” Program|
It is a program aims to prepare the newly admitted students for undergraduate study and university life, and enhancing their opportunity for success and excellence through the following:
a. Developing students’ skills in English.
b. Strengthening students’ understanding and comprehension of basic mathematical concepts, and developing their analytical and critical thinking abilities.
c. Providing the students with the basic knowledge and skills to prepare them for academic endeavor, develop effective learning styles, adapt to University life, choose their field of study, and practice a healthy lifestyle.
|How long is the Prep-Year Program|
The duration of the Prep-Year Program is one academic year, (the summer semester, if necessary)
|Are the grades earned by the student in the prep-year courses counted in his cumulative GPA for the under graduate program|
NO, these grades are not counted in calculation of cumulative GPA for the undergraduate program. But are recorded in his transcript
|What are the grades required for promotion from prep year to the first academic level in the University|
Grade of C or above in all the English and Mathematics courses, and a grade of D or above in the remaining preparatory year courses in the allowed period. Student the has the right to select a major of his choice in accordance with the rules set by the University
|Is it possible to a student to be exempted from studying Prep-Year English module(s)|
Yes, if he proves his proficiency in English before starting study in the Prep-Year Program as per rules set by the University
|Can a Prep-Year student register for some University courses|
Yes, he may be allowed to register for some University courses, in accordance with the rules set by the University, if he successfully passes all the preparatory year English modules, and is left with the remaining preparatory year courses
|In what cases a student is dismissed from the Prep-Year Program|
a. He earns the grade less than C three times or more in all English Modules or earns the grade F or DN or WF twice consecutively in the same Mathematics preparatory year course; or
He fails to complete all the preparatory year courses within the duration of the program in addition to a maximum of one half of that duration
|What is the Degree Plan|
It is a Plan in which the required as well as elective courses and the number of credit hours, that a student needs to successfully complete in order to receive a degree in his major field, are clearly distributed over academic levels
|What is the minimum number of semesters in degree plans of undergraduate study|
Eight (8) semesters
|Who is the “Academic Advisor”|
A faculty member, in the academic department or the college in which the student is enrolled, assigned to each student
The advisor of the prep-year students is the Assistant Dean for Preparatory Year Affairs in the College of Applied & Supporting Studies or anyone else assigned to act as an advisor amongst the faculty members
|What is the role of the “academic advisor”|
Assist the student in matters relating to his academic progress such as:
a. Selecting a degree program consistent with the student’s objectives and ability;
b. Interpreting and understanding the academic regulations;
c. Informing the student of the sequence of required and elective courses in his degree program and suggesting electives;
d. Monitoring the student’s progress and performance;
e. Assisting in early registration and other registration activities; and
Assisting in course substitution, if necessary
|Is it allowed to change the degree plan|
Yes, in special circumstances, some students may change from one degree plan to another, provided this does not affect their graduation requirements
|Which degree plan do readmitted students follow|
Readmitted student will be subject to the degree plan assigned to him during his last semester at the University before receiving discontinued status. However, if this plan has been canceled, he will be placed in the most recent plan in his major based on a recommendation from the academic department concerned
|What is “Student’s Academic Status”|
A student’s academic status is determined at the end of each semester and appear on the transcript that shows his achievements throughout his undergraduate study. However, the summer semester does not change the academic status. A student’s academic status may be one of the following:
a. Good Standing; when the student’s cumulative GPA and semester GPA are at least 2.00.
b. Academic Warning; student is placed under Academic Warning status after the final grades have been processed at the end of each semester (except summer semester), if any of the following cases occurs:
(i) His cumulative GPA is less than 2.00 but more than 1.00.
(ii) His semester GPA is less than 2.00.
Academic Probation; student is placed under Academic Probation after the final grades have been processed at the end of each semester (except summer semester), if his cumulative GPA is less than 1.00
|May a student add or drop a course|
A student may change his registration by adding some courses during the period specified in the academic calendar.
Courses will not appear in the student’s transcript if dropped during the first two weeks of classes in a regular semester (the first week in a summer semester)
|What conditions apply when dropping courses|
a. The course load must remain at or above the minimum allowable limit.
If the course being dropped is a co-requisite for another registered course, the two courses should be dropped simultaneously, or continued to be studied together
|What conditions apply when adding courses|
a. The course load should not exceed the maximum allowable limit.
b. Courses added should not result in a conflict in the student’s schedule or final examinations.
If a student desires to add a course section that is closed, and taking into consideration the evenness of distribution of students among sections of that course, then he must get the approval of the Chairman of department offering the course, and submit it to the Deanship of Admissions & Registration within the specified time
|What are the conditions and consequences of auditing courses|
A student can change the status of a course for which he has already registered, from regular to audit, with the concurrence of the course instructor and subsequent approval of the Chairman of the department offering the course, and the Chairman of the student’s major department. However, while making a request to audit a course, the student must bear in mind that:
a. He can audit a course only if he is expected to graduate in the current semester;
b. He cannot audit a course that he needs in order to graduate;
c. The “audit” status for a course cannot be changed to “credit” status after the “adding” period;
d. Once a course has been audited, it cannot be repeated for credit in subsequent semester(s) except if it is a required course in a new major. This exception will require approval of the advisor, the Chairman of the (major) department, the Dean of the college and the Vice Rector for Academic Affairs;
The deadline for receiving audit requests by the Deanship of Admissions &Registration is the last day for dropping course(s) with the grade of W in the respective term as indicated in the academic calendar
|What are the conditions for “enrollment in the Cooperative Program”|
In order to qualify for enrollment in the cooperative program the student should:
a. have completed more than 85 credit hours of his degree plan and should complete the cooperative assignment before his last semester at the University;
b. have completed all the required courses as identified by his major department;
c. have a cumulative GPA and major GPA of 2.00 or above;
d. not be discontinued from study.
not be allowed to take any other courses along with the Cooperative Program
|What are the conditions for “enrollment in the summer training”|
In order to qualify for enrollment in the summer training the student should:
a. complete the summer training period before his last semester at the University
b. have completed more than 65 credit hours of his degree plan;
c. have completed all the required courses as identified by his major department;
d. have a cumulative GPA and major GPA of 2.00 or above;
e. not be discontinued from study;
not be allowed to take any other courses along with the Summer Training
|What is “Course Load”|
It is defined as “the number of credit-hours for which a student is registered in a regular semester or a summer semester”. The course load varies from one major to another
|How is the minimum and maximum Course Load limit determined|
(a) In a regular semester, for a Student with Good Standing:
· The minimum course load limit is 12 credit hours. This condition is waived in the last semester before graduation.
· The maximum course load is 19 credit hours.
· A student is permitted to register for 21 credit hours with the approval of his department Chairman, if the student has maintained a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 in the preceding semesters that include the last 28 credit hours taken by the student.
· In a summer semester, the maximum course load is 8 credit hours.
(b) Minimum and Maximum Course Load for a Student on Academic Warning or Probation:
· The minimum course load is 12 credit hours in a regular semester.
· The maximum course load is 15 credit hours in a regular semester.
· The maximum course load is 7 credit hours in a summer semester.
(c) Maximum Course Load for a student in his Last term before graduation
· The maximum course load is 20 credit hours in a regular semester.
· The maximum course load is 9 credit hours in a summer semester.
The student should have maintained a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.00 in the preceding semesters that
|What are the consequences of the absence of a regular student without an excuse|
A student may be discontinued from a course and denied entrance to the final examination if his attendance is less than the limit determined by the University Council (which cannot be less than 75% of classes and lab sessions assigned to each course).
- A student who is denied entrance to the examination due to excessive absences will be considered as having failed that course with a DN grade.
The college council - or whatever body it delegates its authority to – may allow a student to attend the final examination if he provides an excuse acceptable to the council. For such an exemption provided by the University Council, the minimum attendance requirement is not less than 50% of the lecture and laboratory sessions scheduled for the course
|What are the consequences of failing to attend the final examination|
A student who fails to attend the final examination without convincing reason will be given zero in that examination and his grade will be calculated on the basis of the class work score he earned in the course.
If a student fails to attend the final examination of any of his scheduled courses due to circumstances beyond his control, the college council, in exceptional cases, may accept the excuse and arrange a make-up examination for him within a period not exceeding the end of the next semester. In such cases the course grade will be given to the student after the make-up examination
|How many times a student may withdraw from the study|
|What are the conditions of withdrawing from a course or number of courses|
If a student has received any course grades before submitting an application to withdraw for a semester, all such grades are retained in his academic record.
- A student may withdraw from a course or a number of courses during the periods specified in the academic calendar that is approved by the University Council as follows:
a. Withdraw from a course or a number of courses without permanent record during the first two weeks of a regular semester.
b. Withdraw from a course or a number of courses with “W” grade during the next four weeks.
c. Withdraw from all courses with “W” grade during the four weeks that follow.
Withdraw from all courses during the very next four weeks and his grade in each course is determined as “Withdrawn with Pass (WP)” or “Withdrawn with Fail (WF)” The grade will be assigned by the instructor, with the approval of the department Chairman, in the light of the student’s performance before his application to withdraw
|Is a Prep-Year student allowed to withdraw from any courses included in the Prep – Year Program|
|What are the requirements of re-enrollment|
A student, whose enrollment status has been canceled, may apply for re-enrollment with the same University ID 'number and academic record he had before his suspension, provided provide that:
a. He applies for re-enrollment within four regular semesters from the date of cancellation of his enrollment status;
b. the relevant college council and concerned departments agree on his re-enrollment;
c. Four or more semesters have lapsed since cancellation of his enrollment, in which case the student can apply to the University for admission as a new student without considering his old academic record, if he fulfills all the admission requirements for new students. The University Council may exempt a student from this provision in accordance with the regulations issued by the Council;
d. He has not been re-enrolled previously. Under exceptionally pressing circumstances, the University Council may exempt a student from this condition;
He was not dismissed for academic reasons
|What are the situations in which the student is not re-enrolled|
A student who has been dismissed from the University for academic or disciplinary reasons - or from other universities for disciplinary reasons - will not be re-enrolled at the University. If it becomes known later that a student has been dismissed for such reasons, his enrollment will automatically be considered null and void as of the re-enrollment date
|When does a student graduate from university|
A student graduates if he fulfilled the following:
1. He successfully completes all graduation requirements according to the degree plan of his major
2. Attains cumulative GPA not less than 2.00.
3. The student must have studied at KFUPM a minimum of 65 credit hours, including at least 25 credit hours in his major field
|In what circumstances a student is dismissed from the university|
a. If he receives three consecutive academic probations as the result of his cumulative GPA. Following the recommendation of the Deanship of Admissions & Registration in coordination with the college council, the University Council may allow the student a fourth opportunity to improve his cumulative GPA by taking additional courses.
b. If he fails to complete the graduation requirements within a maximum additional period equal to one half of the original program’s duration. The University Council, based upon the recommendation of the Deanship of Admissions & Registration in coordination with the college council, may exempt the student from this restriction and give him the opportunity to complete the graduation requirements within an additional period of maximum duration equal to that of the original program
|How much the class work comprise of the course total score|
The class work score shall comprise not less than 30% of the course total score
|How is the class work score evaluated|
a. oral and practical examinations, research, other class activities or some or part of all these and at least one written examination; or,
b. at least two written examinations.
|What are the conditions and consequences to complete a course requirements in more than one semester|
(1) The course instructor may allow the student to complete the course requirements during the following term if there are exceptional circumstances which are beyond the student's control.
(2) The course instructor assigns an IC grade for the student and submits a report to the department Chairman indicating the reasons and justifications for assigning the IC grade, and identifies the work and the time required to complete the course requirements.
(3) The student must complete the course requirements by the end of the next regular semester. However, exceptions may be made in the following cases:
(a) A student who attained an IC grade in the co-op program may, with the approval of the department Chairman, extend completion of the course requirements for one additional regular semester.
(b) A student who attained an IC grade in a course in the semester preceding his co-op program may, with the approval of the department Chairman, extend completion of that course’s requirements within a maximum period of one regular semester after returning from the co-op program.
(4) When the student completes the course requirements within the specified period, the course instructor changes the student grade from IC to the new earned grade. The instructor also informs the Deanship of Admissions & Registration of the grade change within this period through the department Chairman concerned
(5) The Deanship of Admissions & Registration changes the grade to F and informs the student, course instructor and department Chairman accordingly if the grade has not been changed by the instructor within the specified period.
(6) A student cannot repeat a course in which he previously earned an IC grade and the said grade has not been changed.
(7) If a student has an IC grade, this results in the suspension of the student's academic standing during that semester. This also includes the suspension of distinction status.
(8) A student is not allowed to register for a course wherein he earned an IC grade in the prerequisite(s) of that course
|How to deal with a course of research nature that need more than a semester to complete|
* A student will be assigned an IP grade until the completion of the course, and after the completion, the student will be given the grade he has earned.
* If he fails to complete the course on time, the department council teaching the course may approve the assignment of an IC grade for this course in his record
|What are the time restrictions to sit for the final exam or to live the exam venue|
* No student will be allowed to sit for a final examination after the lapse of 30 minutes from the beginning of the examination.
* Also, no student will be allowed to leave the examination venue less than 30 minutes after the beginning of the examination
|What are the violations that the student should avoid in the final exams|
Cheating, or attempting to cheat, or violating instructions and examination regulations. The offender will be subject to punishment in accordance with the Student Disciplinary Rules as issued by the University Council
|Is it possible to re-grade an examination paper|
Yes, if the need arises, and it should be done within a period not exceeding the beginning of the next semester’s examinations