Students are expected to attend all classes, laboratory and clinical sessions. Students enrolled in clinical nursing courses are notified by the instructors at the beginning of each course of the procedure to follow in the case of an absence. Unauthorized absence is a serious matter and must be resolved to the satisfaction of the instructor before a final grade will be issued.
Examinations are to be taken and assignments are to be submitted as scheduled. The provision for make-up examinations and guidelines for the acceptance of late assignments established by each course will be adhered to.
When a student is absent because of an authorized student activity, the absence may be excused by the instructor, provided the faculty member directing such student activity secures prior approval from the Dean's office and so informs the student.
For instances of excused absence, make up examinations, or late assignments; the responsibility for making special arrangements remains with the student.
Students are responsible for their own transportation to assigned areas for clinical experiences. For some of these experiences, access to an automobile is necessary. Assignment to experiences cannot be made to accommodate transportation requests.
The following grading scale applies to all courses in the nursing major:
A 93-100 4.0
A- 91-92 3.7
B+ 89-90 3.3
B 85-88 3.0
B- 83-84 2.7
C+ 80-82 2.3
C 77-79 2.0
C- 75-76 1.7
D 70-74 1.0
F 69 and below 0.0
A grade of C- or better is required for all prerequisite courses and a grade of C or better is required in nursing courses to complete the degree.
Required courses may be repeated only one time whether repetition is due to withdrawal or academic failure. Students must receive a C or better and satisfactorily complete nursing courses with a clinical component.
Students must receive a grade of C or better and satisfactorily fulfill clinical objectives and laboratory objectives in order to satisfactorily complete all nursing courses with a clinical component. If a student receives an unsatisfactory for the clinical component and receives an average of C or better for the theory component , a final grade of D will be assigned for the course. If a student receives an unsatisfactory for the clinical component and receives an average below a C for the theory component, a final grade of F will be assigned.
Progression from one course to another is contingent upon successful completion of each prerequisite course.
A student may not progress to the Comprehensive Nursing Practice course while on academic or clinical probation.
Students in the traditional option must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.5. A student who fails to meet the required grade point average may be granted probationary status to provide the opportunity to:
- Improve scholastically.
- Show evidence of the capacity to successfully complete a baccalaureate degree in nursing.
While on academic probation, a student may take no more than 15 hours of course work and may not make application for a degree. The kinds of courses that may be taken while on probation may also be restricted. The sanction of probationary status is invoked for a period of at least one full time semester and not more than two full time semesters. Students may not advance to the Comprehensive Nursing Practice course while on academic probation. The Director of the Baccalaureate Program will give students on academic probation written notification of their status in the nursing program. Probationary letters remain in the student's academic file.
All students at the School of Nursing must demonstrate professional behavior considered acceptable for both study and a career in nursing. Students are subject to clinical probation under the following conditions:
- Failure to demonstrate consistently the personal and professional attributes considered by the faculty as necessary for continuance in the nursing program.
- Failure to demonstrate consistent improvement in clinical performance as specified in the course objectives.
- Earning a final rating of "needs improvement" in any clinical course objective.
Students who are placed on clinical probation will receive a written contract from the Option Coordinator, Course Coordinator and Clinical Faculty of the Baccalaureate Program which details the behaviors that must be demonstrated to meet the terms of probation. Probationary letters remain in the student's academic file until graduation. Students who are placed on clinical probation during, or at the end of, one clinical course have the duration of the subsequent clinical course to meet the terms of the probation. Failure to meet the terms of the probation as specified in that subsequent clinical course will result in a clinical failure for that course. The Clinical Probation Contract can be found on the Saint Louis University Intranet. Students may not advance to the Comprehensive Nursing Practice course while on clinical probation.
Students are required to withdraw from a clinical course or a course with a clinical component at any time prior to the final examination when it becomes numerically impossible to successfully pass the co-requisite theory course or the theory component of the course with a "C" or better.
Clinical failure is based on the behavior of the student in the clinical area in relation to the course objectives including professional behavior. Reasons for Clinical Failure include but are not limited to the following:
- Earning a final rating of unsatisfactory in any clinical course objective.
- Consistently coming to the clinical setting unprepared.
- Repeated tardiness or unexcused absence on the clinical day.
- Acts of dishonesty.
- Providing unsafe care.
Students are subject to dismissal from the School of Nursing for academic or professional reasons under the following conditions:
- Failure to attain a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.50 after two consecutive semesters on academic probation.
- Being placed either on academic or clinical probation for a second time.
- Incurring a grade less than C- in more than one required prerequisite course and a grade less than C in more than one required nursing course.
- Consistently exhibiting behavior considered unacceptable for both study and a career in nursing.
- Failure to remove clinical probation status.
Students who are dismissed from the School of Nursing may apply for transfer to another school of the University under the condition that he or she is eligible for special probationary status in the school into which transfer is requested. To be eligible for this status, the student must:
- Have a grade point average deficit of no more than 20 points.
- File a request for Intra-University Transfer form and attach a written petition for this status.
- Enclose two letters of recommendation from previous instructors.
Students, who are dismissed from the School of Nursing and wish to appeal their dismissal, must submit a letter requesting review by the Admission, Progression and Graduation Committee (See section on "Appealing a Grade, Probation or Dismissal.") Students will have the opportunity to present their cases to the committee. Decisions of the Admissions, Progression, and Graduation Committee are final and may only be appealed as described in this handbook.
Specific acts under which students are subject to sanctions are outlined in detail in the University brochure Rights and Responsibilities of Students and the University Student Handbook.
APPEALING A GRADE, PROBATION OR DISMISSAL:
Committee Objectives: The objectives of the School of Nursing Admissions, Progression and Graduation (APG) Committee are to:
- Review and recommend to the School of Nursing (SON) Faculty Assembly policies governing admission, progression and graduation of nursing students.
- Consider the best interest of the student, Saint Louis University (SLU), the nursing profession, and the public in making decisions regarding nursing student admission, progression and graduation.
- Assure that pertinent information regarding each student case is known and considered by members of the committee when making decisions.
- Establish reasonable conditions for progression in the nursing program.
- Hear and provide a decision for student academic appeals.
Meetings: The APG Committee will meet at least once each semester to review policies and procedure and, as necessary, to hear student appeals.
- Associate Dean of the School of Nursing
- One representative elected by the SON Faculty Assembly from the doctoral program.
- One representative elected by the SON Faculty Assembly from the master's program.
- One representative elected by the SON Faculty Assembly from the traditional baccalaureate program.
- One representative elected by the SON Faculty Assembly from the accelerated baccalaureate program.
- Academic Program Chairpersons: Baccalaureate, Master's, Doctoral
- Alternates from each program may be appointed by the committee chairperson as necessary.
- Representatives will serve 2 year staggered terms and are eligible for re-election to a second term.
Committee Chairperson: Associate Dean of the School of Nursing
Academic Eligibility Policy: Refer to so named policy in the respective Saint Louis University School of Nursing program handbooks. Graduate student appeals follow the policies delineated in the Saint Louis University Graduate School handbook.
Academic Ineligibility: If, by policy, a student is dismissed from the nursing program because of academic issues, the student has the right to appeal this action.
- The appeal gives the student the opportunity to explain extenuating circumstances or conditions which adversely affected their behavior or academic success, and to describe plans for preventing such problems in the future.
- The appeal is heard by the School of Nursing APG Committee and the Committee makes the decision to grant or deny the student's appeal.
- It is the responsibility of the APG Committee Chair to communicate the Committee's appeal decision to the student. The Chair of the student's program is also promptly informed of the committee's decision on the student's appeal and is responsible for follow-up with the student.
Progressions Committee Procedures
- Following posting of course grades at the end of each semester, the Program Chairs identify those students who have not met all curricular and academic eligibility requirements as described in the program handbook.
- The Program Chairperson sends communication by e-mail to identified students notifying them of their academic eligibility issue (see sample in Appendix A). This communication also explains the appeal process and is copied to the student's mentor and/or advisor and the APG chairperson. The student is asked to acknowledge receipt of this notification by replying to the e-mail notification.
- If the student has not responded to the e-mail in 3 working days, the student will be contacted by telephone and advised of the academic eligibility issue and advised to read the e-mail.
- If a student is simultaneously appealing a course grade and the Academic Eligibility Policy, the course grade appeal must be resolved prior to the academic eligibility issue. Refer to Course Grade Appeal Policy in the program handbook.
- The appeal request must be made in writing to the APG Committee Chairperson. The request must be made promptly following the confirmed e-mail or phone notification of the eligibility issue (within 10 working days). The appeal letter should, at a minimum, include the following:
- Description of the extenuating circumstances which the student believes interfered with the academic performance.
- How these circumstances have been or will be alleviated.
- The student's plan for improvement.
- The hearing is scheduled based on the availability of the committee members (a minimum of three members constitutes a quorum). The meeting usually occurs in the time period between the semesters.
- The Chairperson of the student's program will not be a voting member of the hearing committee but may be invited by the committee chairperson to attend the hearing and provide information as necessary.
- If a committee member believes they cannot fairly review the evidence and render a decision, that committee member should recuse themselves from the meeting.
- In the initial e-mail notification, the student is provided with a list of the committee members. At the student's request, the committee chairperson will make a substitution of one (1) committee member, including the Committee Chair, if the student believes that the committee member may not render an impartial decision.
- The student is encouraged to attend the hearing meeting of the APG Committee. If the student is unable to attend the meeting in person, the student may arrange to have a conference phone meeting with the committee. The student is responsible for informing the APG Committee Chairperson whether she/he is attending the meeting in person, meeting via a telephone conference call, or not attending the meeting at all. If the student will be attending the meeting either in person or via a conference call, the Committee Chairperson will discuss the hearing process with the student prior to the hearing.
- A student may submit a written request to the APG Committee Chairperson that he/she be accompanied by one (1) person at the hearing. This request should provide rationale for the person's attendance and should be received at least two (2) working days prior to the scheduled hearing. If approved by the APG Committee Chairperson, the person may attend the meeting and speak to the petitioner, but is not allowed to address the committee.
- Prior to the Committee hearing, the Committee chairperson will contact the student's faculty mentor and /or advisor and the faculty involved in courses pertinent to the appeal to invite them to provide any germane information regarding the student's appeal. Information from the mentor and faculty must be submitted to the Committee Chairperson in writing prior to the hearing.
- On the day of the hearing, the Committee members are provided with a copy of the appeal letter and the APG Committee Summary form. This form (Appendix B) summarizes the student's academic record and is compiled by the Administrative Assistant assigned to the Committee Chairperson. The Committee Chairperson also reviews the student's official file which contains written documentation of any previous academic issues.
- The hearing will proceed as follows:
- Introductions of all those present for the hearing.
- Committee Chairperson will describe the academic eligibility issue including a review of the applicable policy.
- The student will have the opportunity to make a statement to the Committee
- The committee members will have the opportunity to ask the student questions germane to the issue.
- The student will have the opportunity to make a final statement to the committee, and then will be excused from the meeting room.
- The Committee will then discuss the issue in a private session and make a majority decision regarding the appeal. The Committee Chair will vote only in case of a split decision.
- If the appeal is granted, the Committee will establish any conditions that the student must meet to maintain academic eligibility.
- The recommendation of the Committee will be recorded on the Progression Committee Summary Form (Appendix B). A copy of this Form will be kept in the Committee file and in the student's record. A copy will also be promptly forwarded to the Chairperson of the student's program.
- The decision regarding the student's appeal and conditions to maintain eligibility will be communicated to the student by the APG Chairperson by e-mail within 24 hours of the Committee meeting, and within 5 working days in writing. The letter will be sent to the student using traceable mail. The student will be requested to return a signed letter to the Program Chair that acknowledges the decision of the Committee. If the appeal is granted, the conditions for progression will be explained in this letter. This letter will be copied to the appropriate Program Chair and the student's mentor/ advisor.
- If the appeal is granted, the student must meet the conditions set in the letter from the APG Chairperson. Failure to meet the conditions set in the letter will result in program dismissal. The conditions for eligibility are specified in the APG Tracking Form (Appendix C). The appropriate Program Chairperson is responsible for tracking student adherence to the progression conditions.
- If the appeal is denied the student can file an academic grievance with the Dean of the School of Nursing as stipulated in the College Academic Grievance Policy.
- Details discussed during the meetings are confidential. The Committee recommendations will be reported to the Dean of the School of Nursing and faculty members in the School of Nursing (on a need to know basis).
- At the APG Committee meeting at the end of each semester, the Program Chairpersons will report on the students who have had their appeal granted over the past year and assess whether the student has met the conditions of their appeal. Any student who has not met the conditions of the appeal is subject to program dismissal.