Jun 21, 2024  
Catalog 2014-2015 
Catalog 2014-2015 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academic Standards and Policies


Academic standards, regulations and policies are established in order to ensure a student’s academic progress and to help the student achieve his or her goals. An exception to regulations and policies may be granted under special circumstances through the established appeal processes. All academic policies are currently under review by the Community College of Baltimore County and are subject to change.

Student Academic Appeals

Academic appeals are those that do not involve alleged violations of the Student Code of Conduct (such as cheating) but instead involve allegations of error or misjudgment about academic matters. Typically, these are allegations by students that they have been assigned inappropriate grades by their instructors.

In such cases students must first confer with the faculty member involved. A student who is dissatisfied with the result of such a conference or who has been unable to contact a professor after three (3) attempts must next take his/her concerns to the instructor’s immediate supervisor, providing copies of any documents that are relevant to the appeal, such as the syllabus, graded assignments, and the like. Every effort will be made at this level of appeal to reach a just resolution of the problem.

The final level of appeal is that of the dean of the school offering the course. Students appealing to this level must submit their concerns to the appropriate school dean in the form of a written statement setting out the factual basis for their allegations as clearly and completely as possible, and providing copies of all relevant documents. This written appeal must be submitted to the dean within 45 calendar days of the conclusion of the course.*

Upon receipt of such a written appeal, the dean will, within 15 days, inform the student that the student must elect one of two courses of action: (i) to have the dean render a final decision based upon the student’s written statement and the results of any additional investigation that the dean may deem appropriate or (ii) to have the dean convene a hearing board to make a recommendation to the dean before the dean makes a final decision. The student must select their option within 15 days of notification by the dean.

If the student elects to have a hearing board, the dean will appoint a board composed of at least two faculty members (at least one of whom is from a different discipline than that of the faculty member involved in the appeal) and at least one student. The dean will also appoint a hearing officer from among the professional staff of the College who will preside over the hearing. All of these persons will be screened for their ability to hear the appeal in a fair and impartial manner and to avoid conflicts of interest. This is an academic appeal procedure. Any legal counsel utilized will not have voice rights at such a hearing. The hearing or final decision of the dean must occur or be rendered within 90 days of the student selection of final appeal option.

After the hearing is conducted, the hearing officer will submit a written recommendation to the dean as to how the issue may be resolved. The dean will take this recommendation into account in rendering a final decision, which shall be submitted in writing to the student and to the faculty member.

*The submission deadline may be different for appeals in the School of Health Professions (SHP), due to the unique nature of some of its programs. Students are directed to consult the School of Health Professions for details.

Policy for “Grandfathering” CCBC Students Who are Enrolled in Discontinued Programs

When a program of study is discontinued, students will be afforded time to complete the program requirements. Program Coordinators will work with students to develop plans to help students complete their coursework. If particular courses are no longer offered, substitutions will be made. The length of time for services and benefits to be extended is determined by the number of credits the student needs to complete the program, with the maximum of up to two years after the discontinuance of the program. Requests for further extension must be submitted in writing to the Vice President of Instruction.

If students are enrolled in an accredited program in the School of Health Professions, and that program is discontinued, CCBC will insure that required courses will continue to be offered in order for students to complete their degree/certificate requirements within the timelines for program completion established upon admission to the program.

Academic Action

The academic action policy seeks to provide intervention and support for students who are making little or no academic progress although CCBC students are expected to take responsibility for their own progress. CCBC reviews academic progress at the end of each main enrollment period to identify students who may need assistance. A student who is not making satisfactory progress is subject to academic probation or academic suspension. Support services are available throughout the semester to encourage their academic progress. Students will be informed at the end of the Fall and Spring semesters if placed on Academic Probation or Academic Suspension.

Academic Probation

Academic probation is the college’s official warning that a student needs to improve his or her academic performance. Students who fall below the Cumulative Grade Point Average listed below will be placed on academic probation.

  Total hours attempted  Minimum GPA required
  12-18 1.6
  19-24 1.7
  25-30 1.8
  31-36 1.9
  37-60 2.0

While on academic probation

  • A student is encouraged to seek guidance from academic advisors before registering for further classes.
  • During the regular fall and spring semester, a probationary student may register for up to three courses for a maximum of seven credits.
  • During late start sessions or any single summer or winter sessions, a probationary student may register for up to two courses for a maximum of four credits.
  • A student on probation who wishes to register for additional course credits beyond these maximums must meet with an academic adviser and obtain written permission prior to registering.
  • To be removed from probation, a student must achieve the minimum cumulative GPA above.

Academic Suspension

A student on probation who does not achieve the minimum GPA listed will be academically suspended from the college. Academic suspension restricts a student from registering for classes for one full year. Regardless of cumulative GPA, a student will not be suspended at the end of any semester completed with an average of 2.0 or better.

  Total hours attempted  Min GPA required
  12-18 1.4
  19-24 1.5
  25-30 1.6
  31-36 1.7
  37-42 1.8
  43-48 1.9
  49-60 2.0

Appeal Process: As of July 1, 2012, there is no appeal process to this decision.

ACDV 101 Requirement

 ACDV 101 , Transitioning to College, is a one-credit orientation required in all degrees and certificates. This course is designed to be taken in the first semester at CCBC. Course topics include the culture and expectations of higher education; academic success skills, life skills; technology skills; and college and career goals. Students work with their instructors to create an academic plan for future semesters. Note: Students placed in ESOL 32 , ESOL 33 , and ESOL 34  and lower are exempt from the Orientation Requirement until they complete those courses.

Current students who were required to enroll in ACDV 101 during their first semester at CCBC and did not do so may be able to appeal this requirement

Credit Load

  • A full-time student is one who is registered for at least 12 credits/billable hours or the equivalent (except winter session).
  • A student planning to take 19 or more credits in a semester must obtain the written permission of the academic deans in his or her declared program of study.
  • CCBC encourages a student who is employed to take a reduced credit load so he or she can successfully pursue both school and employment.
  • A student who is employed on a full-time basis is encouraged to take no more than two courses in a regular semester.
  • A student who plans to enroll in more than 14 credits during summer or 7 credits in a winter session must obtain written permission from the academic dean of his or her declared program of study.

Credits and Class Meetings

Normally, a one-credit unit is granted for courses that meet the equivalent of one 50-minute period per week over a 15-week semester. A three-credit course will normally meet the equivalent of three 55-minute periods each week for a 14-week semester. Classes generally meet one, two or three times a week.

During winter and summer session, courses meet additional times each week so that the total class time is the same as in a regular semester. Three to five periods of laboratory or field experience are equivalent to one lecture period.

Course Overload (full/closed classes)

Maximum class sizes are established by CCBC to ensure that students receive the best possible learning experiences. As a result, overloads into these classes that have already reached enrollment capacity are granted only for unusual circumstances. Overload requests for full courses are submitted first to the Enrollment Services Centers. Overload requests will be forwarded to the Dean or Dean’s Designee only when directly related to CCBC operations or academic considerations (class cancellation, wrongly canceled for non-payment/financial aid; changing course level in the same disciplines, e.g., switch from ENGL 101  to ENGL 102 , etc.). Only the Registrar, Assistant Registrar, Director and Assistant Directors of the Enrollment Service Centers have authority to send a student to a Dean or Dean’s Designees for permission to enroll in overloaded classes.

The Deans will consult with each faculty member prior to the beginning of the term to determine the degree to which overload is feasible in his/her course(s).

Assessment/Placement and Continuous Enrollment for Developmental Students 

All certificate and degree-seeking students are required to have their skills assessed in reading, writing, and mathematics. Assessment in reading, writing, and mathematics is required at the time of entrance into the college, and students will not be permitted to register until they complete the assessment process.  Placement tests are offered in designated centers on each campus. Documentation of previous college work, placement tests administered at other colleges, or SAT/ACT scores may exempt a student from testing, in accordance with state agreements. Placement test scores and SAT/ACT scores are valid for two years for students who have not begun their academic coursework. Students with current documentation of disabilities will be eligible for accommodations, when appropriate. Retests and appeals of placement test scores are available on each campus. Note that students in certificate programs which do not require credit mathematics are not required to be assessed in mathematics.

Students who place in developmental reading, writing, and/or mathematics courses are required to register for each of these courses or their prerequisites beginning with their first semester at CCBC. They must continue to enroll in a course or courses from within the required developmental sequence(s) in reading, writing, and/or math every semester until ENGL 101 and a general education math course are successfully completed. All students who place in developmental courses must work closely with an academic advisor to create a plan for enrolling in and completing required developmental courses.

Dean’s List

At the end of each academic term, the Dean’s List is published in order to recognize students who have achieved outstanding academic success. To qualify, a student must have earned a GPA of at least 3.5 over a minimum of the last twelve (12) credits attempted since the last review, and not have a D or F during that time.

Degree and Certificate Requirements

Associate degree (Associate of Arts, A.A., Associate of Science, A.S., Associate of Applied Science, A.A.S., Associate of Fine Arts, A.F.A., Associate of Arts in Teaching, A.A.T., Associate of Science, Engineering, A.S.E.)

A student is eligible to receive an associate degree if he or she meets the following requirements:

  • Completes all course requirements in a given program. An associate degree requires the completion of a minimum of 60 credit hours in either a transfer or career program.
  • Maintains a minimum GPA of 2.0. The A.A.T. degree requires a 2.75 GPA.
  • Earns at least 15 credits of a curriculum at CCBC. 
  • Completes the General Education requirements.
  • Meets financial and academic obligations to the college.
  • Submits an application for graduation  to the Registrar’s office by the published deadline.

Earning an Additional Degree

Additional associate degrees will be awarded to a student who meets the following requirements:

  • Fulfills the course requirements in the additional program of study.
  • Maintains a minimum 2.0 GPA.
  • Submits an application for graduation  to the Enrollment Services Center or Registrar’s office by the published deadline and pays the required graduation fee in the Bursar’s office.


A certificate is awarded to a student enrolled in a career or transfer program who meets the following requirements:

  • Completes the course requirements of the program.
  • Maintains a minimum 2.0 GPA.
  • Completes at least 25 percent of the credits required in the certificate program at CCBC.
  • Meets financial and academic obligations.
  • Submits an application for graduation to the Enrollment Services Center and pays at the Bursar’s office or mails the application and payment to the Registrar’s office by the published deadline.

Letter of Recognition

A Letter of Recognition is a short pattern of study that leads to either career and skills enhancement or academic achievement in a specific study area. Following successful completion of course work, CCBC awards a Letter of Recognition to a qualified student who:

  1. Completes all courses designated in the Letter of Recognition.
  2. Reviews courses with his or her Program Coordinator.
  3. Achieves a minimum 2.0 GPA. 
  4. Submits a request to the academic dean for the Letter of Recognition.

The Letter of Recognition designation will be applied to the academic transcript.

Developmental Education and Learning Assistance

CCBC offers a comprehensive array of courses and services to assist under-prepared students. The purpose of developmental education is to develop in each learner the skills and attitudes necessary for the attainment of academic, career and life goals. CCBC ensures proper placement by assessing  each learner’s level of preparedness for college course work.

Developmental Courses

CCBC offers developmental courses to improve a student’s basic skills in reading, writing and mathematics. These courses provide support for students to succeed in college level instruction. Students who are placed in developmental courses must enroll in these courses within their first 15 billable/credit hours.

Students who demonstrate through placement tests that they do not possess the minimal skills required for developmental courses will be restricted from participating in credit and developmental courses. These students will be referred to preparatory courses offered by the Continuing Education and Economic Development Division, which prepare students for developmental coursework.

Students may elect to enroll in special sections of developmental courses that are offered in accelerated formats that allow students to co-enroll in credit courses.

For more information, contact the Director of Developmental Education and Learning Support or a Coordinator of Developmental Education.

  CCBC Catonsville CCBC Dundalk CCBC Essex
  Library Career Building Student Services Center
  443-840-2754 443-840-3455 443-840-1473

Distance Learning Course Assessment Policy

This policy is intended to assure the integrity of Distance Learning course performance and is in response to the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008, Title IV, Part H, Program Integrity that mandates accrediting agencies to require institutions offering distance education to have a process to establish that a student registered for the distance education course is the same student that participates in, completes, and receives credit for the course.

In response to the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008, Title IV, Part H, Program Integrity, CCBC:

  1. Will provide a secure login and password for each student.
  2. Will provide an ethics statement to each student upon signing on to a CCBC course site.
  3. Will conduct proctored authenticated assessment* for a minimum of 30 percent of the course grade.
  4. May provide new or other authentication technologies that assist in verifying student identity.

*Authenticated assessment represents at least 30 percent of the final grade. Proctors and proctoring sites must be authorized by CCBC. Examples of proctored authenticated assessment include: debate, presentation, demonstration, recital, simulation, defending work, video conference technology or CCBC authorized proctored exam.

Final Examinations

The last week of each fall and spring semester is used exclusively for final examinations or other concluding instructional activities in accordance with the official schedule and course syllabi. Final examinations should not be given before the final week, without permission of the Academic Dean.

A student who does not report for a scheduled final examination may be given a failing grade for the examination, based on the instructions found in the instructor’s syllabus. Guidelines must provide for exceptions in the cases of documented emergencies. In such cases, the student must contact the faculty member within 24 hours of the scheduled exam, and the instructor may require that the make-up be taken within a one-week period. The fall and spring final exam schedule is posted on CCBC’s website.

Grades and Grading

Grading Philosophy

Grading measures the student’s degree of mastery of a course’s objectives and content. The objectives and grading criteria are communicated to the student through the course syllabus.

Grade Reports

  • Grades are issued at the end of each summer and winter sessions, fall and spring semesters and are entered in the student’s permanent record at that time.
  • A student may view his or her final grades in SIMON, the student online information system.
  • A student may obtain an unofficial paper copy of grades upon request for no fee by requesting it either by mail or in person.

Progress Grades

  • A student should speak with his or her instructors to evaluate progress throughout the session or semester. Progress grades are not a part of a student’s academic record.
  • A student performing unsatisfactorily will be notified by the college at the midpoint of the semester.
  • Progress grades are not recorded for courses that meet in an abbreviated semester or session.

Grades and Other Indicators

Grade Quality Points Description
A* 4 Excellent work
B* 3 Good work
C* 2 Satisfactory work
D* 1 Poor work but passing
F* 0 Non-completion of course requirements or unsatisfactory completion (failure).
S   Satisfactory completion
R   Progress toward completion of course requirements or objectives.
U   Unsatisfactory performance
AU   Audit
I   Incomplete
W   Withdrawal
CE/PR   Credit by Examination and Credit by Portfolio
FX   Insufficient Attendance

 *Developmental courses use letter grades (effective Spring 2014).

Non-Grade Indicator Explanations


The R designator represents a specific amount of content or progress in the development of skills. It is used for self-paced, developmental and other courses as agreed upon by CCBC faculty in the appropriate discipline.

AU (Audited Class)

Credit is not awarded for an audited class.  To audit a class a student should:

  • Understand the audited class requirements which may include:
    • Participation in course activities and completion of assignments.
    • Not meeting audited class requirements will result in a grade change from AU to a W. 
    • Final exams are not required or administered to students who audit a class.
  • Register for the audited class.
  • Pay the tuition and fees.

 A student may elect to change his or her registration from credit to audit by the date on the Academic Calendar.  After the deadline a student is permitted to change from credit to audit only under extenuating circumstances with written approval of the academic dean or dean’s designee. 

 If a student is receiving financial aid or veteran’s benefits, or if the student is an athlete or international student, approval must be obtained from the appropriate office to change or audit a course before submitting the Change of Information form to the Enrollment Services Center or Registrar’s office.

 There may be some courses with a limit to the number of times it may be taken for audit.  


The W grade is issued when a student withdraws from any course after the refund period; that is, during the first ten weeks of a regular semester or within the first two-thirds of winter, summer or late start classes. To withdraw from a course, the student must complete a Drop/Add/Withdrawal form, which is available in the Enrollment Services Centers. After the published deadline date, a withdrawal may be granted only under extraordinary circumstances with written approval of the appropriate dean.


An instructor may assign an incomplete grade for any class if the student has made satisfactory progress through most of the course but needs additional time to complete the remaining requirements due to a documented mitigating circumstance. It is the student’s responsibility to request an I grade before the final examination period. Student and instructor must agree on the precise conditions for completion of the course requirements. The course must be completed within 30 working days after the beginning of the next fall or spring semester. If the course is not completed by that time, the grade will automatically change to an F or a U unless the instructor allows an extension. A student must complete a course and receive a grade before that course may fulfill a prerequisite for another course.


College Credit by Examination or Credit by Portfolio is designed to serve the student who – by past work, experience, self-study, and/or travel experience – has mastered subject matter generally equivalent in scope to courses offered at the college. The credit does not carry a letter grade, is not calculated into the Grade Point Average (GPA), and is included in the 45 credits that can be transferred to CCBC. No more than 15 credits can be earned through Credit by Examination or Credit by Portfolio. Refer to Assessment of Prior Learning .


The FX grade will be given to a student who fails as a result of insufficient attendance, as defined by individual faculty members. The grade would be calculated into the GPA as an F and would appear as an F on the student transcript; however, it will only be used internally to document failures due to nonattendance.

Grade Point Average Calculator

To calculate a GPA:

  • Grades: Grades used to calculate a student’s GPA are A, B, C, D, and F. (Does not include S, U, W (withdrawal), or AU (audit) grades).

A = 4 quality points
B = 3 quality points
C = 2 quality points
D = 1 quality point
F = 0 quality points

  • Quality Points: Quality points are values given to each grade that is earned at CCBC.

The Formula: Quality points divided by hours attempted =  the GPA

This formula can be used to compute all GPAs. The Community College of Baltimore County computes the following grade point averages for each student:

  • Term GPA - This calculation includes only the grades and quality points a student earns in one term.
  • Cumulative GPA - This calculation includes all grades and quality points a student has earned.  

Appeal for a Tuition Refund after the Withdrawal or Drop Deadline Date 

A student who drops or withdraws from courses after the deadline date because of extenuating circumstances may submit an appeal for a tuition refund.  The appeal will be considered only for one academic year following the semester when the drop or withdrawal occurred. 

Documentation concerning the student’s circumstance is required from an authorized source such as a physician statement with dates of illness, treatment or hospitalization and recovery date; death certificate or obituary notice for student or immediate family, parent, sibling, offspring, spouse; police or insurance report; or deployment orders for military duty.  The documentation must be received by CCBC within 15 days of submitting the appeal form to the Enrollment Services Center or Registrar’s office.

Appeal decisions are made by the Registrar. 

Change of Grade Procedure

If a student, with the prior approval of the faculty member, successfully completes course requirements after semester grades are officially reported, a Change-of-Grade form will be submitted by the faculty member to the Registrar’s office within the first 30 days of the next semester. The Academic School Dean’s signature is required. After 30 days, any change of grade must be submitted to the Academic School Dean with appropriate justification. If the Academic School Dean concurs, the change of grade request form with the justification will be forwarded to the Registrar’s office.

Honors for High Achievement

Graduation with Honors

A student who qualifies for the associate degree will also receive an Honors designation.

  GPA Honors Designation
  3.40 - 3.59  Cum Laude
  3.60 - 3.79 Magna Cum Laude
  3.80 - 4.00 Summa Cum Laude

Honors Program

The Honors Program is intended to promote academic excellence for students who are both intellectually curious and highly motivated. Students are encouraged to think analytically and creatively and taught to communicate effectively in both oral and written projects.

Student Benefits

  • Access to smaller classes
  • Special social and cultural events
  • Faculty mentors
  • Scholarship eligibility
  • Honors certificate
  • Graduation recognition
  • Often receive special consideration at transfer institutions*

*Benefit for completion of Honors Program - guaranteed admission at selected transfer institutions

Honors Program Eligibility

The Honors program is open to students who show potential for superior academic performance. A student may apply for the program if he or she already has an excellent academic record or demonstrates potential for academic achievement.

Honors Courses are Designed to:

  • Emphasize student involvement
  • Foster collaboration and inquiry
  • Require work at a more sophisticated level
  • Involve participation, exposure to new ideas, active learning and critical thinking 

A student interested in the Honors program should request an application from the campus Honors Program director:


CCBC Catonsville
Natasha Cole-Leonard

CCBC Dundalk
Jeremy Trucker

CCBC Essex
Rae Rosenthal

Criteria for Recognition of Honors Program Completion

Religious Holidays

A student who does not attend class because he or she observes major religious holidays shall be given the opportunity, to the maximum extent possible, to make up, within a reasonable amount of time, any academic work or tests missed during those days. The student will need to initiate arrangements with the faculty member(s) before the religious holiday to make up missed assignments or tests.

Course Repeat Policy

Students who have already received two grades (including W, AU, I, and R) in any course are prohibited from registering for the course for the third or subsequent time without the written permission of an academic dean or his/her designee. Students will not be permitted for the third or subsequent attempts to take on-line, modified on-line or blended courses.

If the course is developmental, the recommendation of a support team (including at least one individual selected by the Dean of Developmental Education and at least one individual selected by the academic unit) must be included in the decision making process of the academic dean or his/her designee.

If a student is receiving financial aid, refer to the financial aid  repeated coursework policy.

Writing Policy

The College recognizes that clear, correct, and concise use of language is characteristic of an educated person. Therefore, whenever possible, students in all disciplines will be required to do written assignments. Also, instructors will consider the quality of writing in determining a grade for some or all written assignments as indicated in their course syllabus. 

Statewide Academic Requirements and Regulations: 

  1. All certificate and degree-seeking students are required to have their skills assessed in reading, English, and mathematics at the time of initial enrollment into the college. Students will not be permitted to register until they complete the assessment process. For the complete Assessment/Placement policy, see the Assessment section above.
  2. Students who are placed into a developmental course in reading, English, and/or mathematics must register for and complete all of their developmental courses beginning with their first semester and registering continuously until all developmental courses are completed.
  3. Students who register for and complete developmental English and mathematics must register for ENGL 101 and general education math by the next regular semester following the semester in which they completed the developmental courses. Students may also use the accelerated program in developmental education to register for ENGL 101 and general education math concurrently with their developmental coursework.
  4. All degree-seeking students must register for and complete English 101 and a General Education (credit-bearing) mathematics courses within their first 24 credits.
  5. Students who do not maintain these requirements must meet with an academic advisor before registering for their next semester.