Undergraduate Academic Catalog 2022-2023 
    Jul 14, 2024  
Undergraduate Academic Catalog 2022-2023 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Registration & Academic Policies

University Communications

Each student is provided with a Fresno Pacific University email address as the official method for communicating deadlines and other important information. Students are required to check their Fresno Pacific University email on a regular basis.

University Catalog

Students are responsible for becoming familiar with the information presented in this catalog and for knowing and observing all policies and procedures related to their participation in the university community.

Students are personally responsible for following all policies and meeting all deadlines and requirements. This responsibility includes, but is not limited to, academic requirements and general procedures and policies. Regulations will not be waived nor exceptions granted based on a student's lack of knowledge regarding Fresno Pacific University policies or procedures. Additional policies and procedures can be found in the student handbooks.

Catalog Controlling Graduation

Students who remain continuously enrolled must satisfy degree and general education requirements as outlined in the catalog in effect at the time they first attended the university as degree candidates. In the event that a student takes a leave of absence for less than one calendar year, the student will resume studies under the catalog in effect at the time they first attended the university as degree candidates. In the event that a student takes a leave of absence for one calendar year or longer, the student will resume studies under the catalog in effect at the time of re-enrollment. This policy will apply even if the changes in curriculum for that program and/or general education are significant. Catalogs take effect on the first day of class for the summer term of the academic year for which they are published.

Course Numbering

Lower-division undergraduate courses are numbered 100-299. Students are expected to complete all their 100- and 200-level courses in their freshman and sophomore years. Upper- division courses are intended for students with junior or senior standing and are numbered 300 and 400. Courses numbered 100-499 that include an H are honors courses. Course offerings at the 600-700 level are for eligible seniors and graduate students. Certain courses may also have prerequisites.

Numbers Definition
1-49 Non-credit educational experiences.
50-99 Pre-baccalaureate university credit courses of a preparatory, developmental or semiprofessional nature. Courses are not applicable to degree requirements.
100-299 Lower-division undergraduate courses that are general and introductory. They are intended to provide a foundation for advanced work.
300-499 Upper-division undergraduate courses that generally assume prior knowledge and experience in the subject, with content more advanced or specific than lower-division courses.

Course Syllabi and Assignments

The syllabi, course outlines or lesson plans for courses in the programs of study at Fresno Pacific University are subject to changes at the discretion of instructors. Students are encouraged to select courses based on degree requirements and other factors related to individual instructors, but students should not construe syllabi, et al., used in prior terms or distributed at the start of a term, as an unalterable commitment of the instructor or the university.

Variations in the learning needs of students, inherent uncertainty in predicting exactly how material for a course should be covered and an ambiguity in determining the most effective means of evaluating students dictates that a design for instruction may need to be adjusted. Therefore, in order to be pedagogically responsible, the university allows that reading assignments, written assignments, examinations, daily topics and means and weights involved in the instructor's evaluation of students can change as needed after instruction has begun.

Instructors are encouraged to be as faithful as possible to published syllabi or lesson plans. However, if altering these is judged by instructors to be necessary and appropriate, instructors may do so but are requested to share with their students in a timely manner how the course syllabi or lesson plans have changed.

Students are required to keep a copy of all work that they submit. If an assignment that has been submitted to the instructor is lost, the student will be required to provide a replacement. If the student does not have a copy of their work, it will be presumed that the work was not completed and submitted.

For traditional undergraduate students, no work will be accepted after 5:00 p.m. on Friday of the last week of the semester or session. For degree completion students, the last day to accept work is three days after the last day of class.

Transfer Credits/Credits for Previous Course Work

Transfer Credit Units

Fresno Pacific University operates on a semester unit system.

Students may receive credit for courses taken at other institutions, subject to the limitations given below. All documents used for transcript evaluation must be official. Transfer courses taken at foreign institutions require a certified English translation and evaluation of the candidate's transcripts by one of the agencies approved by FPU (AERC or WES). This evaluation should be a Course-by-Course Report rather than a Document (degree) Report. All transfer work and FPU work is used to calculate a combined cumulative GPA for admission purposes.

All submitted transcripts become the property of Fresno Pacific University and cannot be returned to the student or forwarded to other institutions. Under federal policy, students have the right to view the documents in their file; the university does not provide or allow the making of copies of these documents.

Transfer credit evaluations are conducted by the Registrar's Office. Evaluations of major coursework for transfer is conducted at the school level in consultation with the program director. Students desiring additional review should coordinate that review with their faculty mentor or advisor.

Transfer credit is always evaluated and applied to a student's record according to the transfer standard in effect at the time the official transcript is received by the Registrar's Office. If the standard changes subsequent to the initial evaluation, the student may request that the Registrar's Office re-evaluate the transfer credit. Students make this request at their own risk, as the change in standards may result in fewer transfer credits and different FPU course requirements.

Quarter units are converted to semester units by multiplying the number of quarter units by 2 and then dividing by 3. For example, 5 quarter units times 2 divided by 3 = 3.33 semester units. See chart for further examples.

Quarter Units Semester Units
1 0.66
2 1.33
3 2.00
4 2.66
5 3.33

The university grants transfer credit in accordance with the following criteria:

  1. A combined maximum of 90 semester units from all sources may be transferred to Fresno Pacific University. This 90 semester unit limit can include work from the following sources:
    • Regionally accredited two-year institutions (70 semester unit maximum)
    • Regionally accredited four-year institutions (90 semester unit maximum)
    • Advanced Placement [AP], College Level Examination Program [CLEP], International Baccalaureate [IB], Military/ACE, ACE, and unaccredited institutions (30 semester unit maximum).
    • Foreign Transfer Credit - see Foreign Transcript Evaluation

Note: Transfer credit that does not fall within these designated learning experiences will not be accepted in transfer at Fresno Pacific University.

   2. The course credit is from approved higher educational institutions with accreditation recognized by CHEA (Council for Higher Education Accreditation):

  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
  • New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC)
  • Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NCCU)
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)
  • WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
  • WASC Accrediting Commission for Community Junior Colleges (ACCJC)
  • Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE)
  • Association of Theological Schools (ATS)
  • Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS)
  • Association of Advanced Rabbinical and Talmudic Schools (AARTS)
  • Those types of credit listed under Other Types of Undergraduate Credit below.

    3. A grade of C- or better was earned in the course.

Note: If a transfer student has completed an Associate's Degree for Transfer (ADT) from the California community college system or submitted the appropriate general education transfer certification, and received a grade lower than C- in one of those courses, then the student may have the associated general education requirement waived. This waived requirement will affect the number of elective credits a student must take to complete their degree.

    4. The course content does not overlap or repeat courses already completed or to be completed at Fresno Pacific University or another institution.

Also see the Degree Requirements section.

Foreign Transcript Evaluation

Previous educational work completed at foreign institutions requires a certified English translation and evaluation of the candidate's transcripts by one of the agencies approved by FPU. Post-secondary evaluations should be a Course-by-Course Report. Secondary education information may be a Document (degree) Report. Whether a student is an international or a domestic student, these third-party evaluations are required for the courses to be recognized as equivalent to U.S. baccalaureate or graduate-level work. For detailed information and a listing of accepted evaluation companies, please consult the FPU Registrar's Office webpage.

Course Substitution

Students may request a course that is similar to a major course requirement or a general education course be substituted for the required course. (Substitutions cannot be made from life experience, work experience and non-baccalaureate coursework.) Course substitutions can either be transfer or FPU courses.

Several situations may arise when a course substitution is appropriate, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • A transfer course is without a direct FPU equivalent but may meet a requirement
  • Required course not offered in a timely manner to complete requirements
  • Personalized adaptation of a program
  • Program has been revised or closed and alternative courses may be part of an approved teach-out/sunsetting plan

Students desiring a substitution should coordinate a review with their faculty mentor or academic advisor.

Challenge Exam

Students who feel they have a background in a particular field equivalent to that covered in a required FPU course may challenge that course by examination, providing the university acknowledges the course is eligible for challenge. The student pays the appropriate challenge exam fee (see Tuition and Fee Schedule), sits for the examination, and if successful in passing, is given credit for the course.  Students on academic probation cannot challenge a course by examination unless such challenge is specifically allowed in their probation agreement.

Students should consult the appropriate program administrator to learn which courses are available for waiver or challenge, and for the limits on waivers.  Usually there is a specified list of courses that may be challenged or waived.

In addition, a course may not be challenged when:

  • The student previously has been awarded credit for duplicate coursework or related, more advanced coursework.
  • The student is enrolled in that course for credit or audit during the same term.
  • The student previously has received a failing or NC grade or has unsuccessfully challenged that course.
  • Generally, practicum, seminar, capstone, and 600-level courses are not available for course challenge.

Examinations for course challenge will cover the entire subject matter taught over a semester-long course and are intended to show mastery of the subject matter. A grade of CR will be posted when a letter grade equivalent to C- or higher is earned.  Units earned via course challenge do not count toward the determination of a student's load status, but do count toward graduation and SAP calculations. Request for course challenge (challenge exams) are made during regular registration periods.

Course Waiver

Occasionally, a specific course requirement may be waived because of previously completed coursework. If a course requirement is waived, other units must be substituted. A course waiver does not reduce the unit requirements for the degree program. Waivers cannot be made from life experience, work experience and non-baccalaureate coursework.

Other Types of Undergraduate Credit

A combined maximum of 30 units may be awarded for Advanced Placement exams, College Level Examination Program, International Baccalaureate exams, military or ACE credit, and transfer credit from unaccredited institutions. For additional details on each of these types of credit, please refer to the Registrar's Office website.

Transfer Credit from Unaccredited Institutions

In some cases, units may be transferred from unaccredited institutions if approved through the academic petition process.  Students would need to provide documentation including, but not limited to, course syllabi, institutional academic catalogs, and instructor information.

If coursework was taken at institutions with accreditations recognized by CHEA (Council for Higher Education Accreditation), but do not have regional, ABHE, ATS, TRACS or AARTS accreditation, courses can be reviewed for possible transferability by the Registrar's Office. Transferability is based on current transfer standards from regionally accredited institutions. A maximum 30 units of coursework from unaccredited institutions may be considered for transferability to FPU; if deemed transferable, these units will satisfy elective requirements only. In all cases, conditions outlined for students entering from accredited colleges as transfer students will also apply.

Advanced Placement

Students who submit advanced placement test scores of three or higher may be granted 3 semester units of credit. Students must have official AP transcripts from College Board sent to the Registrar's Office. To review equivalencies for AP exams at FPU, please examine the AP chart at https://www.fresno.edu/students/registrars-office/transferring-courses-and-course-credit

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Students can earn college credits by receiving a qualifying score on a variety of CLEP exams that measure how much is known about certain academic subjects. For an overview of academic subject CLEP exams available, please visit https://clep.collegeboard.org/exams. Students must have official CLEP transcripts from College Board sent to the Registrar's Office. To review qualifying scores and equivalencies for CLEP exams at FPU, please examine the CLEP chart at https://www.fresno.edu/students/registrars-office/transferring-courses-and-course-credit.

International Baccalaureate

Students may be granted credit through the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) for advanced study in high school. Credit is awarded when a score of five or greater is earned in higher level IB subject exams. Credit awarded for examination is equal to that of the Fresno Pacific University courses to which it corresponds.

Military or ACE Credit

ACE (American Council on Education) elective credit is awarded for documented college-level learning obtained in military and other adult learning experiences. This coursework must be baccalaureate level and will be awarded elective credit only. Students should request military transcripts from the branch of the military in which they completed service at https://jst.doded.mil [Army, Navy, Marines, & Coast Guard] or http://www.airuniversity.af.mil [Air Force]. Students with non-military ACE units should request a transcript directly from the ACE website at acenet.edu.

Credit Hour Policy

Credit Hour is defined by the Department of Education in CFR 600.2 as follows:

A credit hour is an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutionally established equivalency that reasonably approximates not less than--

  1. One hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out of class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks for one semester or trimester hour of credit or ten to twelve weeks for one quarter hour of credit, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time; or
  2. At least an equivalent amount of work as required in paragraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.

A link to Fresno Pacific University's full Credit Hour Policy can be found on the Registrar Website under Credit Hour Policy.

Course Modes

Courses are offered in different types of delivery modes: face-to-face, online, and blended.

Lecture Courses

Lecture courses meet in a face-to-face, traditional class setting for the equivalent of 15 class hours for each unit of credit. This course assumes approximately two hours of student work outside of class for each hour spent in class. Therefore, student time for a 3-unit course is assumed to be 135 hours (45 hours in class and 90 hours of student preparation).

Online Courses

An online course has most or all of the content delivered online. Online courses typically have no face-to-face meetings and all materials and activities are Internet based. Multimedia components may include: text, email, discussion boards, chat utilities, voice over Internet protocol, instant messaging, synchronous audio, video clips, interactive activities, simulations, games, self-grading exercises, quizzes, examinations, websites and other Internet resources.

Online courses that do not set specific times when all students must be online are described as being asynchronous. Online courses that set specific times when all students must be online are described as being synchronous.

Blended Courses

A blended, or hybrid, course blends online and face-to-face delivery. A blended course has required face-to-face meetings and online work.

Directed Study Courses

A directed study is a cataloged course taken by special arrangement and approved only to expand program offers or meet specific program requirements that cannot be met in other ways. Typically the course is taught on an individual basis because of scheduling conflicts or other compelling reasons. The course objectives and activities will generally follow the syllabus, with adaptions as appropriate. Prior approval is required by the instructor, program director or mentor/advisor and the dean.

Before permission is granted to meet a requirement by means of a directed study, the following options must have been explored and not found to be feasible:

  1. Substitution of another course for the required course.
  2. Waiver of the requirement

Directed studies must meet the following criteria:

  1. The amount of work required must be equivalent to that required in the regular course.
  2. The student is held to the same measures of quality as in the regular course.
  3. The number of hours of consultation between professor and student for each unit of credit granted should follow established FPU standards.
  4. The request must be approved by the instructor, the program director or mentor/advisor and the dean.

Enrichment Courses

Selected courses are available for non-credit, personal enrichment, and are intended for individuals from the community to benefit from regular courses in the curriculum, subject to space availability and instructor approval. This option is available at no cost to current FPU students and current employees; for all others, the enrichment fee is charged (see Costs and Financial Aid ). No admission application is required for enrollment in this option. Courses taken under the enrichment option are recorded on the transcript and are given a non-evaluative grade of E (enrichment).

Independent Study Courses

An independent study is a means of conducting in-depth research on a subject or for studying an area not covered by, but related to, the regular curriculum.

In order to receive credit for independent study, the student must develop a written learning contract with a professor, outlining specific objectives, learning activities and criteria for evaluation. Contact hours should meet established FPU standards. All independent study courses must have prior written approval of the appropriate program director (or equivalent). Independent study is to be used only in cases in which the course content is not available in a regular course and there is clear justification for offering the option. Most courses may not be taken by independent study.

The number of units and the fulfillment of specific degree requirements students may take in an independent study capacity varies by degree program. Specific information may be obtained by contacting the relevant program director (or equivalent).

University Scholars Program

University Scholars Program (USP) courses are honors courses offered in several general education disciplines that fulfill general education requirements and in several academic majors as determined by program faculty. USP courses are not merely intensive general education or more strenuous major courses, but rather offer students an enriched and expanded educational experience in small classes. USP courses are designated with an H in the course number (e.g., HIST 120H .)

Academic Calendar

The academic year is divided into terms. The traditional undergraduate calendar is divided into three terms: the fall and spring terms, each 15 weeks in length, and a summer term. Starting in the 2021-2022 academic year, degree completion will transition to three terms: summer, fall and spring.  Short-term course sessions within each term may be offered. The university only grants academic credit in semester units. For more information, see the Academic Calendars .


Only individuals who are registered may attend classes. (Traditional undergraduate wait-listed students may attend for the first two weeks of the semester.) All registrations or course additions must be approved by the student's mentor, advisor or program director as the first step of the registration process. The second step is to register online for the approved courses. Previous FPU financial responsibilities must be met before registration can occur.

Non-registered students do not have access to class information in Sunbird Central and will not be able to turn in assignments or receive grades. After the fourth week of the session, no petitions for late registration will be allowed.

It is the responsibility of students to make changes in registration, such as dropping courses after the first week, withdrawing from programs, etc. within the appropriate deadlines. Failure to do so will result in a failing grade and financial indebtedness.

Students may verify registered courses by viewing their official class schedule on Sunbird Central. Specific registration deadlines can be found on the Fresno Pacific Registrar's Office website or in the Academic Calendars section of this catalog.

Agreement Policy

Registration signifies that the student agrees to abide by the policies and procedures of the university. The university reserves the right to cancel the registration of any student who does not comply. This agreement is in keeping with the university's philosophy that students should be aware of the dimensions and constraints of the educational community in which they participate during the years of their enrollment. Students are required to respect the various academic and administrative deadlines listed in the academic calendar and other university publications.

Overload Traditional Undergraduate and Degree Completion Students

Students may take a maximum of 18 units per semester. Students who have an FPU GPA of 3.0 or higher may appeal this policy to their program advisor, who will take into consideration all relevant factors before allowing additional units. Students wishing to exceed 18 units must submit an Overload Request.

Course Availability

The university makes every reasonable effort to offer courses as announced. However, the university reserves the right to modify the class schedule or to cancel courses as necessary. Students may be administratively transferred to equivalent class sections. Not all courses listed in this catalog are offered each term.

Early registration is advised for general education and elective courses. Courses with low enrollment two weeks prior to the start of class may be canceled or students may be transferred to an online version of the course.

Wait List

When a course reaches its authorized capacity, a student may request to be placed on a wait list. A course wait list is a list of students who wish to register for a course if and when space becomes available. Wait-listed students will be given a chance to register for these courses through the second week of the semester. If there is no wait list, any eligible student may register for the course. For additional information on the policies and procedures related to course wait lists, please refer to the Waitlist Policy.

Course Drops

Students who do not intend to complete a course should drop it online via Sunbird Central during the first week to receive a full refund and no grade. After the first week, it is the students' responsibility to withdraw from courses they do not intend to complete. After the first week, see Course Withdrawals. Students who are unable to attend due to an emergency should contact the instructor and request an excused absence. Refunds and grades are based on the last day of attendance. Failure to drop courses in a timely manner will result in failed grades and financial responsibility for payment (see Financial information for details). Students may be administratively dropped for not meeting satisfactory academic progress or failure to follow university rules.

Course Withdrawals

Students may attend courses and still withdraw from them until the appropriate deadline. See the Academic Calendar  section for specific dates. Students who withdraw from courses after the first week but before the drop deadline will receive a grade of W. The grade of W does not affect GPA, but does affect satisfactory academic progress. Students who attend courses after the deadline will receive a grade from the instructor. Students may petition to drop a course after the deadline and receive a grade of W. (See Petition Policy). Dropping a course may invalidate the four year graduation guarantee for traditional undergraduate students. See the chart which follows for additional information.

Course Drops for Undergraduate: 2-16 Week Courses

Percent Refund for Last Day of Attendance
Course Type Week 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

Full Semester


16 Weeks

% Refund

















Grade no grade W W W W W W W W W F* F* F* F* F* F*
Process Online Petition



12 Week Courses

% Refund 100 25 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0  
Grade no grade W W W W W W F* F* F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition



8-9 Week Courses

% Refund










Grade no grade W W W W F* F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition

Summer Session


6-7 Week Courses

% Refund








Grade no grade W W W F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition

Short Course


4-5 Week Courses

% Refund






Grade no grade W F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition

Short Course


2-3 Weeks

% Refund




Grade W F* F*  
Process Online Petition

Chart Key: The Week row refers to the ordinal week of the semester/session (e.g., Week 1 refers to Monday through Sunday of the first week of the semester/session.) The percent refund and grade are based on the last day of attendance. In the Grade row, F* is the grade of F, the grade earned, or the grade of W granted via petition. The Process row designates the process to follow and refers to the week the process completed online, not to the last day of attendance.

Course Drops for Traditional Undergraduate: 1-7 Day Courses

Percent Refund for Last Day of Attendance
Course Type Days 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
6-7 Day Courses % Refund 100 25 0 0 0 0 0
Grade no grade W W F* F* F* F*
Process Online Petition
4-5 Day Courses % Refund 100 25 0 0 0  
Grade no grade W F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition
1-3 Day Courses % Refund 100 0 0  
Grade no grade F* F*  
Percent Online Petition

Course Drops for Degree Completion Students 

Percent Refund for Last Day of Attendance
Course Type Session 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
Full Semester % Refund 100 25 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Grade W W W W W W W W W W F* F* F* F* F* F*
Process Online Petition
8-9 Week Courses % Refund 100 25 0 0 0 0 0 0 0  
Grade W W W W F* F* F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition
6-7 Week Courses % Refund 100 25 0 0 0 0 0  
Grade W W W F* F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition
4-5 Week Courses % Refund 100 25 0 0 0  
Grade W W F* F* F*  
Process Online Petition
2-3 Week Courses/Weekend Courses % Refund 100 0 0  
Grade W F* F*  
Process Online Petition

Chart Key: The Week row refers to the ordinal week of the course (e.g., Week 1 refers to the first class session of the course.) A weekend course is considered two class sessions (weeks).

Changing Section of a Continuing Sequence

Many of the courses offered in a program's curriculum are part of continuing sequences that extend over more than one term. When enrolling in the first term of a sequential course, students, in fact, enroll in that section for the duration of the course. Should substantial reasons exist for changing enrollment in a sequential course, students must obtain permission from the current course instructor, the proposed new instructor and the program director (or equivalent) or his/her designee. This authorization must be presented in writing to the Registrar's Office. After such approval is obtained, students must then follow existing add/drop procedures to change the section. Some courses do not allow for changes in sections.


Permanent Record

Only information of an academic nature is entered into the student academic record (transcript). That includes terms of attendance and coursework completed.

Official Records

Official transcripts are issued by the Registrar's Office. Transcripts are issued only at the request of the student, using the university's electronic request system.

Official transcripts bear the institutional seal and the signature of the university registrar.

Fresno Pacific University cannot officially verify any coursework taken at another institution even if the student has a transcript on file from that institution.

Changes to Records

The Registrar's Office houses the official records of students and is responsible for maintaining and updating those records. It is the student's responsibility to keep the university apprised of all name, address and phone number changes. Students wishing to make changes to their address, telephone number or email address information should submit the Student Information form located on Sunbird Central.

The Registrar's Office requires appropriate documentation in order to change or correct a name, Social Security number or birth date. Documentation for a name change or date of birth correction is a driver's license. Documentation for a Social Security number correction is a Social Security card.

Enrollment Verification

The National Student Clearinghouse provides enrollment verification certifications for FPU students through its Web-based student self-service. This service also allows students to view their loan history and is free to students. This secure site provides 24-hour-a-day enrollment verifications/information.

Certificates are printed on demand. The site provides a single source for student loan information.

Marking System and Symbols Used on Transcripts


A Superior The student has demonstrated a quality of work and accomplishment far beyond the formal requirements and shown originality of thought and mastery of material. The A+ grade is not recognized as a valid grade in grade point average calculations and is not recorded on the student's transcript.
B Above Average The student's achievement exceeds the usual accomplishment, showing a clear indication of initiative and grasp of subject.
C Average The student has met the formal requirements and has demonstrated good comprehension of the subject and reasonable ability to handle ideas.
D Below Average The student's accomplishment leaves much to be desired Minimum requirements have been met but were inadequate.
F Failure The student has not met the minimum requirement.
CR Credit Used upon completion of thesis, internship and for other specified courses. While work must be at least the equivalent of the grade required for program credit, CR is not used in computing grade point averages.
NC No Credit The student has not achieved the minimum expectations of scholarship or credit in terms of the course objectives. The NC is not to be used in situations in which a grade of F is justified. It is not used in computing grade point averages.
E Enrichment Non- evaluative grade indicating participation.
I Incomplete Given only in extenuating circumstances. Work must be completed by the end of the succeeding term for traditional undergraduate students. For degree completion students, work must be completed within 30 days from the end of the class.
IP In Progress To be used for certain theses, practica and internships.
AU Audit Does not yield credit. Enrollment for audit is limited to original registration for the term or to properly approved changes within the first week. Registration and payment of fees are required for audit courses.
UA Unsatisfactory Audit
W Withdrawal Grade given to those who drop classes during the scheduled drop period.
NR No Report Indication (to be used only by registrar) that as of the deadline for submitting grades, none had been received. See the Grade Reporting section.
S Satisfactory Participation
U Unsatisfactory Participation

Faculty may use pluses and minuses when grades fall between two categories. Note: a plus may not be used with a grade of A.

Grade Point Average (GPA) and Quality Points

For each unit in which the student is enrolled, he or she will receive quality points as follows:

Grade Quality Points
A 4
A - 3.7
B+ 3.3
B 3
B - 2.7
C+ 2.3
C 2
C - 1.7
D+ 1.3
D 1
D - 0.7
F 0

A student's grade point average is obtained by dividing the total number of quality points earned by the total number of units undertaken, excluding courses in which the grades CR, I, IP, NC, W and AU were received. Only FPU credits are used in calculating the GPA on the Fresno Pacific University transcript and in calculating the cumulative GPA.

Credit-Bearing Grades

Courses with a grade below C- will not be credited toward the completion of major or minor requirements. Stricter standards may be applied in specific programs. (See program descriptions.) A grade of D- is required to be credited for general education and elective courses.

Grade Reporting and Appeals

Instructors report a grade for credit when all requirements for the course have been completed. The Registrar's Office must receive grades from instructors no later than the date published annually in the Academic Calendar.

If grades are not received on time by the registrar, an NR (No Report) will be entered on the student's transcript. Student who receive NR for their grade should contact their instructor.

After a grade has been reported to the university's registrar, the grade will not be changed unless a Grade Change Request form is submitted to the Registrar's Office. When there is a clerical or computation error, faculty may make grade changes up to two terms (fall, spring, summer) following completion of a course. Request for grade changes for any other reason should follow the grade appeals process that follows and should be initiated within six weeks of grade posting. Faculty are required to keep documentation that supports grades assigned for a minimum of one year.

Grade Appeals Process

In general, grades represent the faculty member's professional judgment of a student's performance in a course and as such, are final. However, students have the right to ask a faculty member for an explanation of any grade received. Students are encouraged to seek advice in matters of concern about grades from their faculty or academic advisor. Students may appeal a grade only when they perceive that a final grade was biased, arbitrary, or capricious in any of the following ways:

  • An obvious error in calculation.
  • The instructor has applied more exacting standards to the particular student.
  • The grade was given on some other basis than performance in the course.
  • The grade represents a substantial departure from the instructor's announced standards.

 In those instances, students must follow the Grade Appeal Process.

Degree Complete Failed Courses

Any DC student that has failed 2 cohort courses in a given semester may be required to stop out of the existing cohort to repeat the two failed courses. This will involve joining another cohort to retake the failed courses and then continue with the major.

  • 1st failed cohort class: Student will be notified by Academic Advisor. If an additional cohort course is failed within the same semester, all future cohort courses could potentially be dropped until failed courses have been repeated.
  • 2nd failed cohort class: Student will be notified by Academic Advisor and all future cohort courses risk being dropped. A registration hold will be put on the student's account until classes are retaken or until Program Director (PD) approves the student to continue in assigned cohort.
  • If the student wants to appeal the decision: There will need to be a cohort petition, along with a "letter of explanation" submitted to the Program Director. PD will communicate decision to Academic Advisor and a plan of action will be put into place. Hold is adjusted based on decision.
  • If the student appeals: The student may remain in the current course while meeting with PD. If PD approves student will continue and retake failed courses at a later time; the advisor will work with student to put a schedule in place. If PD does not approve student to continue in the current cohort, student will complete whichever course they are currently taking and their advisor will have them administratively dropped from future courses. The student will then be added into the courses that need repeating and continue the program in the new cohort. ​

Repeated Courses and Grade Replacement Policy

Some courses are designated as repeatable for credit each time a student enrolls. Whether a course is repeatable for credit is indicated in course descriptions. When a student repeats a course not designated as repeatable for credit, they are awarded credit only once for each course. The units in subsequent attempts will, however, be counted in determining the student's enrollment status and full tuition is charged for units of credit (for additional information, see Student Financial Services prior to registration). Students may repeat Fresno Pacific University courses for grade substitution only when both courses are taken at FPU. If a student opts to retake a course to replace a grade, the course with the higher grade will automatically replace the lower grade once the official grading is recorded in FPU's data system. Only the higher of the two grades will be calculated into the final cumulative GPA at FPU. Please note: The replaced [original] grade will remain on the official transcript within the term it was taken with a notation of the repeat status; the original grade will be calculated into that term's GPA and the cumulative GPA to date. The replaced [original] grade will not be used in the final cumulative GPA calculation. No coursework may be repeated after the student's degree has been conferred.

Grading Alternatives

Auditing a Course

Students wishing to attend class without receiving credit may register as auditors. Enrollment as an auditor is subject to permission of the instructor. Regular class attendance is expected and students' participation in any or all classroom activities is at the discretion of the instructor. Check the Program Costs section of this catalog for the fee information. A course satisfactorily completed for audit is listed on the transcript with a grade of AU. Audit courses not satisfactorily completed will appear on the transcript with a grade of UA. The audit option is not available in all FPU courses. (See the Course Descriptions  section.) Seminary Students may change their status in a course from credit to audit by the deadline indicated in the academic calendar (The standard refund policies apply).

Incomplete Grade

Students may receive a grade of incomplete for a course when illness, family tragedy or similar difficulty makes it impossible for them to complete course requirements on time. Students must arrange for an Incomplete with their instructor and dean, complete the Incomplete Grade Request form online. Students do not re-register to finish incomplete coursework; however, students are required to finish coursework no later than the end of the stated deadline period. Normally the course must be completed with the instructor who assigned the incomplete grade. Incomplete grades that are not removed by the end of the deadline period will be converted automatically to the final grade provided by the instructor on the Incomplete Grade Request form (typically an F for graded courses or NC for credit/no credit courses). A degree cannot be granted with an incomplete on the transcript.

Requests for incompletes are not approved in cases where students have no completed work due to negligence or lack of effort, or are not satisfied with their grade. Requests for incompletes must be submitted prior to the last day of class and must be approved by the instructor and the dean. When an incomplete is granted for graduate courses, course requirements must be completed before the end of the next sequential term (spring, summer, fall).

In-Progress Courses

A standard IP course is intended, by design, to span two or three terms (i.e., field practica). In-progress courses may not exceed a total of three terms, including the summer term. Deadlines are set by program directors. When students enroll in such courses the credits and final grades are deferred until the end of the last term of the course. A grade of IP is posted to a student's record at the end of the first term and remains until a final grade is issued.

A non-standard IP course may span one to three terms. Some students will finish one semester and others may finish in up to three semesters (including the summer term.) (See the Course Descriptions  section.)

Credit/No Credit Grades

Credit/No Credit (CR/NC) units are not calculated into a student's GPA. Check course descriptions to see if a course is graded CR/NC.

Traditional Undergraduate

To receive a CR grade, the work must be at least the equivalent of the grade required for program credit, if not a grade of No Credit will be assigned. Students may elect to take letter- graded courses as credit/no credit (CR/NC) for elective coursework and if it is a course-listed option only. This option is intended to encourage students to undertake elective studies at advanced levels outside their major field and is therefore not available in courses being used to fulfill general education, major and/or minor requirements. Accordingly, elected CR/NC courses from other institutions may not transfer in to meet general education, major or minor requirements.

Exception: FPU challenged courses and courses taken in approved study abroad programs may meet general education, major and minor requirements, even though graded CR/NC.

Global Education Courses (Traditional Undergraduate)

FPU offers two global education programs: short-term cross cultural learning and cross-cultural programs through affiliated institutions.

All courses taken through affiliated institutions will be recorded on the FPU transcript as credit/no credit, except in those cases where prior to departure the student submits a written request to the Registrar's Office that all courses be letter-graded. Exception: U.S. global education program courses (e.g., American Studies Program) are letter- graded.

Instructor Evaluations

Students are asked to evaluate each course and instructor at the end of the term or session. A form is administered electronically and each student is asked to complete an evaluation form for each course completed. Students are encouraged to provide appropriate feedback and comments. Instructors are encouraged to incorporate feedback into their work. Comments on these forms are taken very seriously by the university and constitute one part of the faculty evaluation process.

Definition of a Full-Time Student

Baccalaureate students are defined as full-time when they enroll in 12 or more units per semester.

Units Per Semester
Type of Student Full Time Three-fourths Time Half Time
National 12+ 9-11 6-8
International 12+ not allowed not allowed

International Students

To abide by the regulations set by the Department of Homeland Security, students in the United States in F-1 status are required to be enrolled full-time. Exceptions to this law include, but are not limited to the final semester in which less than full-time units are required to complete the program.

International students should keep in contact with the International Programs and Services Office regarding their course schedules as exceptions may apply and documentation may be required. For more information please see the Fresno Pacific University website.

Active Enrollment

To remain on active status, students must enroll in consecutive semesters (excluding summer) or have an approved leave of absence. Students who have not enrolled in a class each semester and do not have an approved leave of absence will be administratively withdrawn. Students who wish to reenter a program after being inactive must reapply. Reentry students are required to meet any new program requirements in effect at the time of reentry. Students who plan to miss a semester should follow the leave of absence policy described below.

Baccalaureate Class Standing

Students are classified at the beginning of each semester according to the total number of FPU units completed and accepted transfer units.

Standing Minimum
Freshman 0 29
Sophomore 30 59
Junior 60 89
Senior 90  

Non-Matriculated Enrollment Status

Students attending on a non-matriculated basis may not earn a degree and must register for courses on a space-available basis (enrollment in such courses is not guaranteed) with a limit of 6 units or two courses per semester. Not all courses are available to non-degree-seeking students and additional permission may be required by the program director. A maximum of 9 units of non-matriculated academic work may later be applied towards a bachelor's degree. Students on a non-matriculated status are not eligible for federal, state or institutional financial aid.

Leave of Absence

A student may take a break from continuous enrollment without the need to reapply for admission by completing a leave of absence form. This form is applicable for one semester and may be extended for a second consecutive semester by submitting an additional leave of absence form. A leave of absence may not go beyond two consecutive semesters. If the student is unable to return to active enrollment after being on leave for two consecutive semesters the student will be administratively withdrawn from the university due to non-enrollment. The student will need to apply for readmission with the university if the student decides to re-enroll in their program at FPU. Please refer to the Re-admissions policy.

  • A student can fill out a leave of absence form at any point during a semester.  This will drop them from all current and future enrolled courses in the corresponding semester. 
    • If the student is currently enrolled in a course(s) the current drop policy applies
    • Please note the refund policy regarding course drop dates
    • Title IX regulations may involve exceptions to course drop and refund policies.
  • Should the student decide to return in the same semester, student will need to work with an advisor to re-enroll in courses dropped due to the Leave of Absence.
  • The leave of absence policy is as stated above unless otherwise required by law.

Military Leave of Absence

A matriculated student who is called up to active duty with the military or deployed for military action is eligible for a military leave of absence. A military leave of absence will facilitate a student's return to Fresno Pacific University if the student wishes to return within one year of the date of discharge from active service or return from deployment.

To obtain a military leave of absence, students must submit the proper form and documentation as indicated above. When discharged from active duty or back from assignment, a student may register at FPU by contacting the Registrar's Office and declaring their intention to return. Documentation of discharge or reassignment will be required. Students returning from military leave of absence will be permitted to participate in the normal registration period with other students with similar class standing as determined by number of credit hours earned. 

Students who are granted a military leave of absence but do not register for classes within one year of the date of discharge or reassignment must file an application for readmission within the Admissions Office to re-enroll. New degree requirements may apply.

Administrative Withdrawal

Students who do not register or apply for a leave of absence by the end of the term will be administratively withdrawn from the university and dismissed from the academic program. The student must respond within 14 calendar days of the date posted on the notification letter (inclusive of the sent date) in order to remain active.

Withdrawal from the University

A university withdrawal is complete removal from enrollment at the university. Notifying university personnel of withdrawal from the university indicates that the student does not plan to return. All current and future enrollment is dropped/withdrawn and the student is withdrawn from the university. Once withdrawn, the student must reapply and be readmitted in order to return. Failure to drop/withdraw courses the student will not complete may result in failing grades and payment responsibility.

Students wishing to withdraw from the university after the course drop deadlines listed previously and who have documented extenuating circumstances beyond their control must submit an academic petition for consideration. For more information, see Withdrawal Policy.


The university expects regular class attendance by all students. Students who do not attend at least once during the first week of class will be administratively dropped from the course. Students should contact the instructor to request an excused absence if there are extenuating circumstances. Students are responsible for all academic work missed during absences. When an absence occurs, students should contact the instructor both as a courtesy and to check for missed assignments. Instructors maintain attendance electronically.

Students who will be absent for an extended period of time should refer to the leave of absence policy. After the first week, students are responsible for dropping courses they will not attend or complete. (See the Drop Policy section.)

Corrections to a student's attendance record must be made no later than two terms following the completion of a course. After two terms, the attendance record will stand.

Attendance for Online and Blended Courses

Electronic attendance in blended and online courses is taken by an automated system, and may be amended by faculty. Faculty may adopt stricter requirements than those listed below;  see course syllabus for details. For online courses, attendance is defined as academically engaging with the online course material at least once a week. For blended courses, regular attendance is defined as attending face-to-face instruction or academically engaging with online course material once a week at a minimum (Faculty may adopt stricter requirements). Failure to attend the online or the onsite portions of a course during a one-week period will result in an absence. Students registered for blended courses who neither attend the face-to-face instruction nor academically engage with the online course material during the first week will be marked absent and administratively dropped from the course. Online students who do not academically engage with the online course material during the first week will be marked absent and administratively dropped from the course.

Academic engagement is tracked by certain types of online activities. Academic engagement in the Moodle online environment is defined as submitting assignments and/or interacting with Moodle activities. Examples of Moodle activities include assignments, blogs, chat, choice, databases, discussion forums, glossary, journal, questionnaires, quizzes, surveys, wikis, or workshops. Logging into Moodle and/or looking at resources such as videos, websites, articles, or books are not output-type activities and will not be considered online attendance.

Automated attendance is recorded every Sunday at midnight for the previous Monday through Sunday week. Assignments done in a week other than the one when the assignment is due will not count towards attendance for any future or previous week. Students who do not participate in online activities weekly are at risk for failing the course, which may affect their academic or financial standing.

Co-Curricular Activities

Students are not penalized for missed class time if such absence occurs in conjunction with an approved FPU co-curricular activity. Classes missed during approved FPU co-curricular activities are excused absences. Students must notify instructors of approved absences prior to any missed class time. For the university's priority rating system to determine when co-curricular activities take priority over class time, please talk with your instructor. Athletics policies may be mandated by the NCAA. Student-athletes should speak with the Compliance Officer for additional details. All missed class work and assignments must be completed according to the schedule established by the instructor of the course.

Degree Completion Students

In an accelerated, nontraditional degree program attendance is mandatory, so there are no "excused" absences.

Students marked absent within an online course for two or more weeks automatically receive a grade of F.

For blended courses, students who are up to 19 minutes late to the face-to-face class session will be marked tardy. Being tardy three times equals one absence. Students who are absent for more than one face-to-face or two online portions of class automatically receive a grade of F.

Students who do not attend the first week of class will be administratively dropped from the course, unless the instructor grants a notified absence. A notified absence at the first class session is still counted as an absence for course purposes.

In the course of a year, however, there may be a few unavoidable absences due to illness or unexpected, extenuating circumstances. If an absence is unavoidable, the student must inform the instructor. Two options are available at the discretion of the instructor.

  1. Complete make-up work. Doing make-up work is expected, but does not remove the absence from the student's record.
  2. Attend another cohort that is covering the missed material. A maximum of one class per course may be made up by attending another cohort. (This option may not always be available.) Attending another cohort will erase the absence from the student's record.

Degree Requirements

Fresno Pacific University offers bachelor's degrees and master's degrees. Specific course requirements are listed in the general education and program sections of this catalog. Traditional undergraduate students are required to meet with their mentor and to make an educational plan that will detail specific course requirements needed to earn their degree.

Bachelor's Degree


Requirements for a Bachelor of Arts degree or a Bachelor of Science degree are:

  1. A minimum of 120 semester units, which includes
    1. General education requirements.
    2. Major requirements, chosen from one of the available programs. Minor(s) and additional majors may also be chosen, but are not required for the degree.
    3. Elective courses as needed to complete the 120- unit minimum.
  2. All incompletes and outstanding grades must be resolved.


  1. A minimum grade point average of 2.0 must be completed in each of the following:
    1. All baccalaureate coursework at Fresno Pacific University.
    2. Coursework in the major and minor (no grade below a C- is acceptable in major and minor courses).
  2. A minimum of 30 units must be taken at FPU. Course challenge credit may not be used to meet this minimum.
  3. A minimum of 18 units in the major must be taken at FPU.
  4. A minimum of 40 units must be taken in upper- division courses.


  1. A maximum of 8 total activity units in art, athletics, drama, journalism, music and physical education, with a maximum of 4 units in a single area, will be counted toward the 120 units required for the degree. Activity course units required in a major or a minor may exceed the 4 unit cap in a single area, but are limited to the number of units specified for that area in the program description.
  2. A maximum of 15 units taken under the CR/NC option policy may be applied towards degree requirements. (See credit/no credit option policy)
  3. A maximum of 6 units of graduate-level credit may be applied towards a bachelor's degree.
  4. A maximum of 9 units in ESL (English as a Second Language) per semester up to a total of 16 units may be applied towards degree requirements. Only ESL units taken at Fresno Pacific University are applicable toward degree requirements; ESL coursework from transfer institutions do not apply.
  5. 6 units of identified coursework that leads to the issuance of a continuing education (CE) badge may be applied to an undergraduate degree.
    • Programs may include up to 9 units of graduate-level credit towards a bachelor's degree. This is particularly helpful for three year pathways incorporating graduate studies into their curriculum.

Transfer lower-division coursework will be applicable under the following conditions:

  1. Transferable lower-division courses will be used to meet FPU lower-division major requirements, subject to all other academic policies.
  2. Up to two transferable lower-division courses may be used to meet major upper-division course requirements, with the exception of certain courses as specified by the department.
  3. Degree Completion exception: No lower-division transfer courses may be used to meet major program requirements.


An RN to BSN student may be awarded up to 10 elective units of credit for successfully completing the NCLEX-RN examination.  Elective credit may apply toward the baccalaureate nursing degree in the amount of one unit of academic credit for every unit of required pre-licensure college-level nursing course credits not previously accepted in transfer to FPU.

  • Credit will be awarded toward the RN to BSN degree after successful completion of NURS 315
  • A combined maximum of 30 units may be awarded for Advanced Placement exams, College Level Examination Program, International Baccalaureate exams, military or ACE credit, NCLEX-RN, and transfer credit from unaccredited institutions.

Four-Year Graduation Guarantee (Traditional Undergraduate Programs)

Students who earn their bachelor's degree in four years get a head start toward achieving their personal goals, entering top graduate schools and becoming leaders in their professions and communities. Fresno Pacific University will guarantee graduation within four years to qualified students entering the traditional undergraduate program. FPU commits to providing the courses, advising, instruction and preparation. Students who fulfill their responsibilities and are not able to graduate in four years will receive the needed courses in the next semester at no cost in tuition or student fees. This guarantee further demonstrates that a degree from FPU is an excellent investment in academic quality as well as professional and ethical development.


The guarantee is limited to basic graduation requirements: 120 minimum units including general education, upper-level and elective courses sufficient for a single major with no minor.

  • Where options between courses are available, students are not guaranteed their first choice.
  • This guarantee does not apply to "fifth-year" programs (teacher education credential requirements) or minimum units beyond graduation requirements (CPA qualifications, etc.) beyond the basic four-year bachelor's degree.
  • The guarantee does not apply to transfer or degree completion students.
  • Students not able to register for the courses needed within four years must complete the free course(s) within two terms of the end of four years (e.g. a summer and fall for those completing four years in the spring; or spring and summer for those completing four years in the fall).
  • The four-year period may be extended for students required to leave the university for up to one year (see the Leave of Absence section) for medical, military or personal reasons.

Student Responsibilities

  • Meet with your mentor during the fall semester of the freshman year.
  • Finalize a major and begin prerequisite or lower-division major courses by the second semester of the freshman year and keep that major until graduation.
  • Complete at least 32 units per year (average 16 per semester) with passing grades in each course.
  • Maintain a cumulative 2.0 GPA and remain in good standing behaviorally with the university.
  • Meet with the mentor each semester for advising before registration opens and take the courses approved by the adviser/mentor that complete general education and major requirements, in the appropriate sequence and as they become available.
  • Register within the first week of registration every semester to gain a spot in the classes needed.
  • Notify mentor if unable to register for an approved course so that an alternative plan can be made.
  • Apply for financial aid and submit required documents by appropriate deadlines.
  • Keep student account up-to-date. (Accounts not up-to-date may be placed on hold, preventing registration for courses.)
  • Complete required courses successfully (see Academic Policies section for minimum acceptable grades) without dropping required or approved courses during a semester.

Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT)

For students transferring to a Fresno Pacific University Traditional Undergraduate or Degree Completion program from the California Community College system, the Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) option offers a guaranteed pathway for admission into an FPU major that is similar to the student's ADT degree (AA-T or AS-T). To receive the following benefits, students must complete their ADT prior to attending FPU and must have at least 60 transferable units [grades of C- or better]. Students awarded an ADT for admission to a similar FPU degree program will enroll at junior standing and will be required to take no more than 68 additional semester units to complete the bachelor's degree within the similar program. Students that have completed their ADT prior to attending FPU, will have the remainder of their lower-division general education requirements waived. For further admission details, please speak to FPU's transfer admission counselors.

To review further information and view the FPU majors that are linked to similar ADTs, please go to: Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) Pathways.

2-Year Transfer Guarantee for ADT Pathways

FPU guarantees a student with an Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) from the California Community College system can complete their degree in just two years. If a student meets the qualification requirements, fulfills the responsibilities under the program, and are unable to complete their major in a 2-year period, FPU will assume all additional tuition costs needed to complete their undergraduate degree at FPU.

Incoming Requirements

  • 60 transferable units [grades of C- or better] from the California Community College system with a completed ADT (Associate Degree for Transfer)
  • Selected an ADT matched (similar) pathway from FPU's undergraduate degree programs
  • Have completed the necessary pre-requisites in the discipline specific to intended major
  • Have at least a 2.4 transfer GPA

Student Responsibilities

To qualify for the guarantee students must:

  • Enroll in an average of 15-18 units per semester; not including repeated courses.
  • Remain in good academic standing by maintaining an institutional grade point average of 2.0 or higher
  • Enroll in the required number of consecutive semesters: 3-4 semesters depending on number of units transferred in
  • Make up units for any failed or withdrawn courses during the guarantee period, which may require you to take more than 15-18 units per semester
    • For TUG you may have to enroll in a summer semester.
  • Fulfill all graduation requirements, including core curriculum, major requirements, and upper division course work requirements.
    • Two Year Guarantee: complete enough upper division courses to have at least 40 upper division units by the end of the 4-semester time frame. 
  • Take all required courses during the semester recommended by your Academic Advisor.
  • Register for all upcoming courses during the registration period.
  • Any courses from a Community College with "D+" or lower are non-transferable and require additional courses and semesters to graduate. 
  • This guarantee may not apply to students starting in a spring or summer semester start (TUG only).
  •  This guarantee is limited to basic graduation requirements: 120 minimum units including general education, upper-level and elective courses sufficient for a single major.

Declaring a Major

Each student must select a major (or majors) no later than the second semester of the sophomore year. Students who wish to take advantage of the traditional undergraduate four year graduation guarantee must declare a major in the second semester of their freshman year and keep that major. Please refer to the Registrar's Office website to declare majors or minors.

Personalized Majors

Personalized majors may be created in consultation with faculty mentors/advisors. Students should recognize that a personalized major, while authorized by the university, may not be recognized as a field of study or form of professional preparation by outside agencies and professions. A personalized major must have a minimum of 32 units. For additional information on how to declare a personalized major, please speak with your mentor or advisor.

Double Majors

A student may complete up to two majors for a bachelor's degree. A double major is defined as two majors in the same type of degree (e.g. two majors in a Bachelor of Arts degree or two majors in a Bachelor of Science degree.) Double majors are usually completed concurrently and are not considered a dual bachelor's degree (see below). If taken concurrently, both majors are listed on one diploma.

A double major is subject to the following conditions:

General studies courses completed for one major may be applied to the second major. If there are unique general education requirements for the second major, they must also be met. If the general education requirements for the second major differ from the first, both sets must be met in full.

The prerequisites and requirements of both majors are completed and are subject to the Course Overlap Policy, which follows.

Second Bachelor's Degree

At least 30 units of the second major (24 units in upper-division and at least 15 in the major area) are completed at Fresno Pacific University in addition to the residence requirement of the first major. (Degree completion exception: all courses for both majors must be taken at FPU.)

All other degree requirements, limitations, etc., apply to both majors (e.g., grade point average.)

A second major taken at a later time is subject to the major and general education degree requirements in effect at acceptance into the second program. If requirements are met, an updated diploma will be issued, but students will not participate in a second commencement ceremony. The double major will also be noted on transcripts.

A dual degree is defined as two majors in two different bachelor's degrees (e.g. a Bachelor of Science degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree). A dual bachelor's degree may be granted to a student subject to the same four conditions as a double major.

Two diplomas are issued, whether the majors are completed concurrently or not. If taken non-concurrently, the student is not eligible to participate in a second commencement ceremony. Both degrees are noted on the student's transcripts.


Students may select a minor (or minors) from the traditional undergraduate programs. Students are not required to complete a minor to meet degree requirements, except in specified majors. Of units required for a minor, at least one-half must be completed at Fresno Pacific University. Minors are open to students upon approval from the program director.

Personalized Minors

Personalized minors may be created in consultation between faculty mentors/advisors and traditional undergraduate students. Students should recognize that a personalized minor, while authorized by the university, may not be recognized as a field of study or form of professional preparation by outside agencies and professions. A personalized minor must have a minimum of 16 units. For additional information on how to declare a personalized minor, please speak with your mentor or advisor.

Degree Completion Minors

Degree completion students who minor in a traditional undergraduate program are not eligible for traditional undergraduate financial awards and are encouraged to consult with Student Financial Services regarding implications of a traditional undergraduate minor on financial aid.

Degree completion students seeking a traditional undergraduate minor must apply for admission through the traditional undergraduate admissions office for a minor offered in the traditional undergraduate programs. Degree completion students are not eligible for personalized minors.

Course Overlap Policy

A student may use an individual course to meet a requirement in more than one area of the curriculum [i.e., general education, major, minor]. This is referred to as a course overlap. The following policies apply to course overlap.

  1. An overlap course may be applied in only two areas of the curriculum. In other words, an overlap course may not be used to meet requirements in three or more areas of the curriculum.
  2. Students completing dual emphases in one major may not overlap any courses between the emphases.
  3. Between any pairing of the two areas of the curriculum (including two majors), the maximum number of overlap courses is three.
  4. The total number of overlap courses a student is allowed is six.
  5. Since the focus series is a part of the general education program, courses used to meet focus series requirements may not overlap with other general education courses.
  6. Liberal studies majors may not overlap any courses between their concentration and general education except for focus series requirements. Concentration requirements may also overlap with a minor.
Student Example
Requirements Met Courses
General Education Requirement
Major Requirement
THEO 465  
Major Requirement
Minor Requirement
BLIT 330 
THEO 300 
REL 418  
Minor Requirement
General Education Requirement
COM 420  
Major #1 Requirement
Major #2 Requirement
REL 460  
Major emphasis 1 requirement
Major emphasis 2 requirement
No course overlaps allowed
  • This student could not use THEO 465  in the minor (point 1).
  • The student has reached the three overlap course maximum between major and minor (point 3).
  • The student has reached the six total overlap course maximum (point 4).

Degree Completion Students

Only three Designated Subject Education courses may be used towards a degree as electives.

Conferral of Degrees and Commencement

Completion of academic requirements for a degree is termed conferral. The ceremony celebrating this achievement is commencement. Participation in the commencement ceremony does not guarantee graduation from the university or satisfactory completion of program requirements.

Degree Application

All graduating students must make a formal application for the degree and pay the fee with the Registrar's Office by the deadline (See Academic Calendar). Students who fail to complete degree requirements within two consecutive semesters will be required to reapply and pay the corresponding fee again. Graduation ceremonies are held twice per year, in May and December. Applications for Degree may be submitted online.

Commencement Eligibility

All students must meet the commencement eligibility requirements listed on the website. For more information, see the Registrar's Office website.


Degrees are conferred upon satisfactory completion of all requirements following the final evaluation and transcript posting by the Registrar's Office. Diplomas are mailed to graduates several weeks after the posting of the degree and verification that all FPU financial obligations have been met. The conferral record is considered permanent and cannot be changed after the student has graduated. The program name, title and requirements are based on the matriculation catalog.

Honors and Awards

Latin Honors

Undergraduate students who have earned a minimum of 45 graded units, at Fresno Pacific University and meet the standards listed below are eligible for degree honors, which are posted to the student's transcript and noted on the diploma.

Degree honors, based on FPU work attempted, are determined according to the following.

Summa Cum Laude 3.90 - 4.00
Magna Cum Laude 3.70 - 3.89
Cum Laude 3.55 - 3.69

Honors listed in the printed commencement program are provisional since grading may not be complete.


A special award is given each academic year to the traditional undergraduate graduating student(s) with the highest grade point average. The recipient must have completed 60 units at FPU and be listed as a graduate in the commencement program. This is announced at the spring commencement ceremony.

The Harold Haak Academic Achievement Award is presented at the spring commencement ceremony. The recipient of this award is selected by the faculty on the basis of academic excellence, contribution to the college community and future promise.

Student and Faculty Dispute Resolution

Occasionally a student may find cause to question the action of a professor regarding requirements of a course, teaching effectiveness, comments made in a class that seem derogatory or inflammatory, criticism of the student, general performance or sanctions given for academic dishonesty. Students should first discuss their concerns with the instructor. If the student and faculty member cannot resolve the issue satisfactorily or if the student does not feel comfortable speaking directly with the instructor the student should consult with the chair of the division in which the course is lodged, who will attempt to resolve the issue. Decisions may be appealed to the dean of the appropriate school for a final resolution.

Petition and Appeals

A request for an exception to a published university academic policy must be made in writing and initiated through the Registrar's Office. For additional details, please refer to the Registrar Office's website.

Continued Enrollment

The university desires to see students complete their academic goals, whether a degree, a certificate, or a credential. Support is available to students who are experiencing difficulties. (See the Student Services section in the Student Handbook.) However, students must follow university policies and achieve academic progress in order to remain enrolled in the university. Registration signifies that the student agrees to abide by the rules, regulations and requirements of the university. The university reserves the right to cancel the registration of any student who does not comply. This agreement is in keeping with the university's philosophy that students should be aware of the dimensions and constraints of the educational community in which they participate during the years of their enrollment.

Please view the Student Handbook for all policies and see academic policies below.

Failure to Meet Standards

When one or more of the above standards are not met, the following actions may be taken: warning status, probation, mandatory leave of absence, or termination. Each policy area has a process for administration and appeal. Administrative actions may include, but are not limited to the following.

  1. Warning
    Warning status, with or without a remediation plan, can be recommended when the nature of the difficulty or infraction does not require more serious or more immediate action.
  2. Probation
    Probationary status is recommended when a student's academic progress or professional development has been inconsistent with university requirements. A student is given a specific amount of time (usually one term) in which to remediate the cause(s) of probation or will otherwise face disqualification from the program.
  3. Disqualification
    A student may be disqualified from registering for university classes or withdrawn from classes. There are two types of disqualification: mandatory leave of absence and termination.
    1. Mandatory Leave of Absence
      A student is placed on mandatory leave of absence when the situation requires serious remediation that necessitates withdrawal from the university in order to complete the required remediation
    2. Termination
      A student may be terminated from the academic program when conditions are judged to be of a serious nature.

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Academic Progress

Fresno Pacific University believes in the importance of students maintaining academic rigor. See the Costs and Financial Aid  section for additional information. Students who wish to remain enrolled will be required to appeal. Please see the Registrar's Office for additional information on how to appeal an academic disqualification.


Students may regain eligibility by submitting a written appeal. Students who successfully appeal may enroll and complete coursework that improves their cumulative FPU GPA and/or completion rate to bring them in full compliance with the Academic Standards. For additional details on the appeals process, please refer to the Registrar Office's website.

Academic Integrity Policy

All people participating in the educational process at Fresno Pacific University are expected to pursue honesty and integrity in all aspects of their academic work. Fresno Pacific University seeks to take a restorative approach to actions of academic dishonesty. Academic dishonesty is a serious violation of university rules and policy, but it is seen primarily as an indication of a broken relationship and a separation between the offender (student) and the university community. It also jeopardizes the growth and learning of the individual and is a disadvantage to those people who do their work with integrity. The offense and response to it are seen as an opportunity for constructive learning and growth and for the offender to be restored to the community. This restorative approach emphasizes acceptance of responsibility for harm done and searches for responses and consequences that facilitate learning and restoration.


It is the student's responsibility to know and understand what constitutes academic dishonesty and to seek guidance when in doubt about these matters. Fresno Pacific University defines academic dishonesty as follows:

Term Definition
Cheating Using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information, study aids or extended assistance in any academic activity, exercise or exam.
Plagiarism Plagiarism is theft and can be committed intentionally or unintentionally. Plagiarism can occur by representing the writings, works or ideas of another as one's own or by copying material from a resource without proper citation. Exact copying should be correctly documented; for example, students should use footnotes or endnotes when appropriate. Paraphrasing, when the basic sentence structure, phraseology and unique language remain the same, also requires proper citation.
Sabotage Willfully damaging or impeding the academic work of another person. This has particular application to computer files, library resources, and laboratory or studio work and may include software piracy, constructing and introducing viruses into a system or copying copyrighted programs. This may also include deliberately depriving others of necessary academic sources.
Fabrication or Falsification Altering or inventing any information or study aids in any academic exercise. This includes falsification or unauthorized modification of any academic records. This may also include attempting to gain advantage over fellow students in an academic exercise through such means as lying about the need for an extension on a paper.
Aiding and Abetting Helping or attempting to help another commit an act of academic dishonesty. For example, students may not duplicate work nor allow others to conduct research or prepare work for them without advance authorization of the instructor.
Reuse or Re- Submitting of Work Submitting work or significant portions of some work for use in more than one course without the instructor's knowledge and permission.

Consequences of Student Academic Dishonesty

Although first, second, and third offenses typically result in the same consequences, the university seeks to review every situation as unique. For additional information on the standard consequences for academic dishonesty, please speak with your mentor, advisor or the Registrar's Office.

First Offense

The typical consequence for a recognized first offense is a zero on the assignment. However, depending upon the nature of the violation, the response may be:

  • Appointment with the director of the Center for Writing and Learning.
  • Meet with a special tutor, program director, mentor/advisor or sponsor.
  • Re-do assignment (e.g., paper or exam) with guidelines for re-submission.
  • Complete an additional substitute assignment.
  • Re-do assignment for less credit.
  • Reduction of grade for an assignment.
  • Zero on the assignment.
  • Reduction of overall course grade.
  • Withdrawal from or failure of course.
  • Other consequences agreed upon by the student and faculty member

All student/faculty mutually determined and agreed-upon responses (and fulfilled agreements) will be reported to the appropriate dean and the student's mentor or advisor.

Multiple Offenses

All second or multiple offenses of any kind will be treated as recognized and intentional (i.e., as known, willful violations) and dealt with by the appropriate dean. Multiple offenses may include:

  • Second/third/subsequent offenses.
  • Different types of offenses (e.g., plagiarism, cheating, etc.)
  • Simultaneous offenses (e.g., in different courses).
  • Unintentional followed by intentional offenses.

The typical response for a second or multiple violations may be failure of the course, loss of eligibility for honors, possible loss of financial aid and may result in reduction or removal of scholarships at the discretion of the dean. The typical response for a third violation will be disqualification from attendance at the university, which becomes part of the student's official record.

Students who do not believe they have violated academic integrity or believe the options/outcomes are disproportionate may appeal the decision through the Provost's Office or FPUProv@fresno.edu. Appeals must be sent in writing (hard copy or email) within 72 hours of the student receiving notification from the Dean's Assistant of the professor's and/or Dean's decision.

University Scholars Program

Program Director: W. Marshall Johnston, Ph.D.


The University Scholars Program (USP) offers traditional undergraduate students of outstanding academic ability and motivation an opportunity to nurture their gifts for leadership and service to God, their communities, and the world at large. Scholars develop research and critical reasoning skills based on in-depth knowledge in the following areas: community engagement, human communication, global/cross-cultural studies, health/wellness, and environment/economic ethics.

USP courses are not merely intensive general education or more strenuous major courses, but rather offer students an enriched and expanded educational experience in small classes. USP courses are honors courses, offered in several general education disciplines that fulfill general education requirements and in several academic majors as determined by program faculty. USP courses are designated with an H in the course number (e.g., HIST 120H .) University Scholar graduation status is awarded to students who successfully complete a minimum of 15 units of USP courses and graduate with a 3.5 FPU GPA.

Admissions Requirements

USP courses are open to all FPU undergraduate students. New and returning Paragon, President's, Transfer and Dean's Scholars or students with a GPA of 3.4 and above have immediate access to honors courses. Other current FPU students wishing to enroll in honors courses will be required to submit a letter of recommendation from an FPU professor or, if a transfer student, from a professor from their previous college/university. The letter should be submitted to the instructor of the USP course or the USP director.