Jul 24, 2024  
2021-2022 Graduate Bulletin 
2021-2022 Graduate Bulletin [ARCHIVED]

Glossary of Academic Terms

Academic Probation
A condition of attendance under which students are allowed to remain at the university with the understanding that they meet set academic standards within a set period of time. Failure to meet the standard results in dismissal from the university.

Add and Drop
The process of changing a course schedule by dropping or adding a course during the prescribed time at the beginning of each semester.

Students register and attend class, but do not take examinations. No credit hours are earned, and the cost of the class is less than regular tuition. “AU” will appear on the grade record.

Bachelor’s Degree
The degree received after completing a specific program of undergraduate study and fulfilling all graduation requirements.


See “Professional Development Certificate.”

A recognition of professional achievement bestowed by an outside organization.

An administrative division of the university housing academic departments, degree programs and other administrative units. At UW-Stout these are: Arts, Communication, Humanities and Social Sciences; Education, Hospitality, Health and Human Sciences; and Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics Management.

A track within a degree program that examines a selected area in greater detail.

A course that must be taken at the same time as another course.

Course modality: Hybrid
A combination of in-person and online/distance instruction.

Course modality: In-person
Intended to be taken in a physical classroom setting (online/distance technology may enhance but not replace in-person instruction.

Course modality: Online Asynchronous
100% of instruction delivered online/distance, no in-person meetings required.

Course modality: Online Synchronous
100% of instruction delivered online/distance, with scheduled dates and times for online class meetings; no in-person meetings required.

Credit Hour
UW-Stout defines a credit hour as an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that reasonably approximates: [1] At least 750 minutes of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of 1,500 minutes of out-of-class student work for one semester credit hour, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time (e.g. compressed courses); or [2] At least an equivalent amount of work as required in part one [1] of this definition for other academic activities as established by UW-Stout, including distance education, online, hybrid, or other indirect faculty instruction, laboratory work, internships, co-op experiences, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours. This definition of the semester credit hour applies to all academic credit bearing activities at all levels (graduate and undergraduate). 

Credit Load
The number of credits a student registers for during a semester.

Degree Program
A planned program of study leading to a degree.

Degree-Seeking Student
A student who has been admitted to a degree program and is seeking a degree.

Deprived of basic social rights and security through poverty, discrimination, or other unfavorable circumstances.

Educationally Disadvantaged
Deprived of a socially adequate education through poverty, discrimination, or other unfavorable circumstances.

A guided list of course selectives that affords increased exposure to a specific area in the student’s chosen professional field.

Full Time Student
A graduate student who enrolls for at least nine credits during the fall or spring semester.

Good Standing
Maintaining an academic record that meets UW-Stout’s requirements; eligible to continue at or return to the university, or to transfer to another institution.

Grade Point
The numerical value given to letter grades, based on an “A” receiving four points, a “B” three points, and so on.

Grade Point Average (GPA)
The numerical value assigned to a student’s scholastic average, computed by dividing the total grade points by the total credit hours attempted.

Financial assistance that does not have to be repaid.

A barrier placed on a student’s ability to register for classes or receive transcripts as a result of unpaid monetary obligation or other action by the university.

The grade assigned only if a student is temporarily unable to complete course requirements because of unusual circumstances.

Independent Study
A course of study designed by a student and undertaken outside the classroom, under the supervision of one or more faculty.

Drawing on two or more disciplines in a single course or program.

Work in a company or agency related to a student’s degree program and career plans, usually for academic credit and often also for payment.

A planned program of study leading to a degree. Term is often used interchangeably with degree program.

Major studies
A component within a degree program that provides fundamental education for a particular career discipline.

Directed work experience related to a program of study.

A course or experience that must be successfully completed before enrollment in a designated course.

Professional Development Certificate
An alternative academic credential for individuals seeking to obtain new knowledge and skills or to update their knowledge and skills in a specific area.

Professional Electives
Required credits that are not prescribed by the program by designation of a specific course, but that are professional and specific in their content as they pertain to the major.

The process of enrolling in and paying for courses each semester.

A group of courses from which a student must choose a prescribed number of credits to meet a program requirement.

A unit of time, generally 16 weeks long, in the academic calendar.

Special Student/Non-Program Student
A non-degree seeking student who holds a bachelor’s degree and enrolls in graduate courses for credit.

A specialization is a program of study, with carefully constructed learning experiences, defined outcomes, and specified evaluation procedures. Students may enroll in the specialization as a stand-alone program or in addition to their undergraduate or graduate major.

A term to reference a series of courses that do not, by themselves, comprise a degree. Submajors are minors (undergraduate), specializations, certifications, professional development certificates, concentrations and emphases.

Sustainability-Focused Courses
These courses have a primary (50% or more) and explicit focus on sustainability, sustainability with a field, or a major sustainability challenge. (See U.N. sustainable development goals, ex. climate change, environmental justice, global poverty). This would include courses on the application of sustainability to a particular field (green chemistry, sustainable agriculture, sustainability accounting, sustainable design). It would also include courses with a primary and explicit focus on a major sustainability challenges such as climate change, environmental justice, sustainable communities, social equity, global poverty & development, or renewable energy policy.) The focus of these courses should be on understanding and solving these problems.

  • To count as sustainability-focused at least half of the approved course learning objectives must relate to sustainability issues or concepts. Inclusion of sustainability throughout the course outline.

Sustainability-Inclusive Courses
The courses primary focus is not sustainability but include a least one unit or module on sustainability or a sustainability challenge or integrate sustainability issues and concepts throughout the course. Basic courses that could relate to sustainability such as chemistry, sociology, GIS, or engineering would not count towards this definition unless the course outline clearly indicates how sustainability is integrated into the course.

  • ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​To count as sustainability-inclusive at least one learning objective must relate to sustainability issues or concepts. Inclusion of at least one sustainability-related unit or of sustainability throughout the course outline

An official copy of a student’s permanent academic record.

Transfer Credit
Academic credit earned at another accredited institution and accepted toward a UW-Stout degree.

The amount of money that must be paid for a course.