Glossary of Common Academic Terms



Abbreviation for the College of Arts and Sciences (

Academic Action

The procedure that results from a change in a student’s academic standing. Examples include a move from good standing to probation or from warning to good standing.

Academic Advisor

Academic advisors are either professional staff or faculty members who work with students to assist them throughout their academic careers. Academic advisors can aid you in determining your academic progress, selecting courses, evaluating your career and major options, and navigating the academic processes at the University of Louisville.

Academic Standing

The academic standing reflects student performance. For example, a student who meets or exceeds minimum GPA requirements for his/her academic unit is considered to be in good standing.


To certify as meeting a prescribed standard. The University of Louisville is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Individual academic units may have additional accrediting associations.


Abbreviation for the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Add Courses

When students attempt to register for a course it is called “adding”. Students may add courses to their schedule throughout the early registration period. Once a regular semester (fall or spring) has started, students may add classes to their schedule until the end of the day on the Friday of that week. After the first week of class, students must petition to “late add” a class. Students should check with their advisors for information about the late add petition process.

Admission Status

The academic standing in which a student is admitted to the University. This may be determined by factors such as ACT/SAT scores and High School GPA, transfer GPA, or previous University of Louisville GPA.

Advanced Placement (AP)

In accordance with Senate Bill 74, credit is given for scores of 3 or above on all Advanced Placement Examinations of the College Board.


Abbreviation for Advisor Learning Outcome.

Audit (AU)

To enroll in a course on a noncredit basis. When a student elects to audit a course, they will not earn a letter grade or receive credit for completing the course. (Student will be charged the regular tuition rate for the course.) Students can ask their advisor for more information on this process.




Abbreviation for the Bachelor of Arts baccalaureate degree.


Abbreviation for the Bachelor of Fine Arts baccalaureate degree.


An online, electronic, education platform – designed to deliver course and/or organizational content and information. It can be accessed from the University of Louisville homepage or by typing into the address bar of your web browser.

Block Transfer

Students who transfer between Kentucky’s public institutions of higher education may qualify for a “block” rather than course-by-course transfer. For more information, see the Undergraduate Catalog (


Abbreviation for the Bachelor of Science baccalaureate degree.


Abbreviation for the Bachelor of Science in Economics baccalaureate degree.


The central depository of funds; handles the Student Financials for the University of Louisville (




An acronym for Civic, Academic, Personal and Social. CAPS is a summer peer mentoring program that pairs incoming first-year students with an upper-class peer mentor. CAPS is part of the First Year Initiatives Program (


Abbreviation for the College of Education and Human Development (


Abbreviation for the College Level Examination Program of the College Board. Students can earn college credit by passing one or more of the CLEP exams. Areas of study, the amount of credit allowed, and minimum scores are listed in the Undergraduate Catalog (


Abbreviation for the College of Business (


A ceremony that recognizes degree recipients in a given semester; currently there are ceremonies in May and December. Commencement may be commonly referred to as “graduation”.


A set of supporting courses within a major that focuses on a specific topic.

Continuing Studies

A non-degree-granting unit that admits adult students who want to begin or return to college as part-time students ( In order to be eligible, students must be at least 25 years old and have a high school diploma or equivalency certificate issued by a State Department of Education. For more information, see the Undergraduate Catalog (

Council for Postsecondary Education (CPE)

A 16-member board appointed by the Governor, the CPE is the state coordinating board for postsecondary and adult education in Kentucky. The Council coordinates changes and improvements in postsecondary and adult education as directed by the Kentucky Postsecondary Education Improvement Act of 1997.


Cross-listing refers to a course that is listed under more than one academic department. This may be done in instances when the subject matter covered by the course is applicable to more than one academic discipline. For example, PAS 218 Survey of American Jazz is also listed as MUH 218 Survey of American Jazz because the course material is applicable to both the Pan-African Studies and Music History departments.



Degree Audit (also called Degree Check)

The process of examining a student’s academic record to determine if the student has completed all degree requirements and is eligible to graduate.


Abbreviation for the Dental School (

Disability Resource Center (DRC)

The Disability Resource Center is designed to assist students with disabilities in obtaining equal access to the many services that are available on campus. The DRC is located in Stevenson Hall (

Drop Courses

When students remove themselves from a course that they had previously registered for it is called “dropping”. Although the terms “drop” and “withdrawal” are used interchangeably, they have two very different results.

Dropping a class completely removes the course from the student’s transcript so that there is no record of the student having ever been registered for the class. Since the course is deleted from the student’s transcript, no grade is recorded and the student is not charged any tuition for the course. Students may drop courses from their schedule throughout the early registration period each semester. Once a regular semester (fall or spring) has started, students may drop classes from their schedule until the end of the add/drop period. This is typically the first Friday after the official start of classes, but this date can vary. The date will also vary for summer courses and courses that have special schedules that differ from the regular semester meeting dates. Students should always check the Registrar’s website for the official drop/add dates (



Earned Hours (ERN HRS)

Course hours completed in which academic credit was earned. These include courses taken for a letter grade and/or on a pass/fail basis. You can find your total number of earned hours by using ULink to access your unofficial transcript (




Abbreviation for the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. This is a federal law applying to educational agencies and institutions that receive funding under a program administered by the U.S. Department of Education. Under FERPA, schools must generally afford students who are aged 18 or over, or are attending a postsecondary institution, access to their education records, an opportunity to seek to have the records amended, and some control over the disclosure of information from the records. At UofL, responsibility for authorizing the release of student information rests with the director of the University Archives and Records Center (


A slang word for a negative service indicator in the PeopleSoft student records system.


An undergraduate student who has earned fewer than 30 semester credit hours.

Full-Time (F/T) Students

Undergraduate students who are registered for 12 or more semester hours in a regular school session (fall or spring).



General Education (Gen Ed)

General Education is a common core of courses that must be completed by all degree-seeking students. These courses are designed to encourage students to think critically, communicate effectively, and appreciate diversity. (


Abbreviation for General Education Requirements (



Hours Attempted with Grade (HAWG)

Total number of credit hours taken by a student for which a letter grade (A, B, C, D or F) is recorded. These hours are used in the calculation of a student’s grade point average.

Home Institution

The college or university at which a student is enrolled in as a student.

Host Institution

When a student elects to participate in a program or complete a course offered by a college or university outside of their home institution, the school that the student is attending is called the host institution.


Abbreviation for the Department of Health and Sports Sciences (


Abbreviation for the Health Sciences Campus, home to the University’s healthcare programs. The HSC is located in downtown Louisville.



Information Center

Refers to the visitor and information centers at the University of Louisville. There are two on Belknap Campus: one on the north end of campus off the Cardinal Boulevard entrance, and the other at the south end of campus off the 3rd Street entrance.

Information Technology (IT)

The department that provides technology-based services to UL faculty, staff and students. Through IT, students can get assistance with their computer accounts, purchase software for their courses, or purchase hardware that is designed to meet campus computing requirements. (


Abbreviation for Indiana University Southeast (

Intra-University Transfer (IUT)

The process of transferring from one academic unit at the University of Louisville to another within the institution.




Abbreviation for Jefferson Community and Technical College (formerly known as JCC or Jefferson Community College) (


An undergraduate student who has earned 60 or more, but fewer than 90 semester hours of credit.




Abbreviation for the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (


Abbreviation for the Kent School of Social Work (




To be admitted into the University of Louisville.

Metropolitan College (Metro College)

A joint program with United Parcel Service (UPS). Students work at UPS in exchange for tuition and an hourly rate of pay.


A cooperative effort of seven institutions: Bellarmine University, Indiana University Southeast, Jefferson Community Technical College, Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Spalding University, and the University of Louisville ( A full-time student at any of these schools enjoys the opportunity of cross-registration, double degree programs, library privileges, and other benefits. For more information, see the Undergraduate Catalog (


Abbreviation for the Miller Information Technology Center (formerly the Student Union Building).


Abbreviation for the School of Music (




Abbreviation for the National Academic Advising Association (


Abbreviation for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (

No Initial Registration (NIR)

A negative service indicator in PeopleSoft which indicates that a student has not registered for classes by the initial registration deadline. This date is typically the first day of the academic term.


Abbreviation for the School of Nursing (



Pass/Fail (P/F)

To enroll in a course on a non-graded basis. When a student elects to take a course pass/fail, they will not earn a letter grade (A, B, C, D) for the course, but they can earn credit for the class if they receive a P (for Pass). A pass is not included in the student’s grade point average. However, if the student receives an F (for Fail), they will not earn credit for completing the course and the F is calculated in the grade point average. Students should speak with their advisor if they are interested in taking a course on a pass/fail basis.

Part-Time (P/T) Students

Undergraduate students who are enrolled for fewer than 12 semester credit hours in a regular academic term (fall or spring).

Post-Baccalaureate (Post-Bac) Students

Students who have already completed a Bachelor’s Degree, but are taking additional undergraduate course work.


A prerequisite is a course you must complete before you can take another course. Prerequisites are listed in the course description that can be accessed from either the Undergraduate Catalog ( or the online Schedule of Courses (




Additional class/study time assigned to some lecture classes. Recitation classes are typically smaller subsections of the large course and may be led by either the course instructor or a teaching assistant. For example, Math and Speech Communication courses usually have a recitation attached to the course.

Regular Students

Students who have satisfied the admissions requirements for the academic unit in which they are enrolled.

Residency Requirements

The minimum number of hours a student must complete at the University of Louisville in order to earn a degree. For example, students earning baccalaureate degrees are required to complete 30 of their last 36 hours at the University of Louisville.

Residency Status

Refers to whether or not a student is a permanent resident of Kentucky.




Abbreviation for the Swain Student Activities Center on Belknap Campus (

Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)

The agency through which the University of Louisville receives its accreditation.


An undergraduate student who has completed more than 90 semester credit hours, but has not yet earned a baccalaureate degree.

Service Indicator

Notations placed in the PeopleSoft student records system. Positive indicators do not place restrictions on the student, but provide information to university personnel about an action a student has taken, i.e. a student has been advised. Negative indicators are restrictions that indicate a student has an issue with a particular university unit or department that he/she must resolve before he/she can register, i.e. a student is required to be advised.


Abbreviation for the Student Government Association (


Abbreviation for Student Learning Outcomes.


An undergraduate student who has earned 30 or more, but fewer than 60 semester credit hours.


Abbreviation for Student Orientation Staff members. These are the student staff that is hired by Admissions and Orientation to work with incoming freshmen during Freshman Orientation.

Special Students

Those students who do not satisfy the admissions requirements for the academic unit in which they are enrolled, but who are admitted by special consent.


Abbreviation for the J. B. Speed School of Engineering (


Abbreviation for the Student Tutorial On-line Module Program. These online modules deliver information to students based on the Student Learning Outcomes for first-year students.




A transcript is a student’s official academic record. The transcript contains information about the courses that a student has taken and the grades that have been received in those courses. Students may review their unofficial transcript in their ULink account. Students can order official copies of their transcript from the Registrar’s Office (Houchens Building Room 030) (

Transfer Credit

Transfer credit refers to coursework taken by a student at another institution that has been accepted (or transferred in) by the University of Louisville for academic credit. It is important that students understand that not all courses offered by other colleges or universities will be transferred in by the University of Louisville. It is also important for students to be aware that not all transfer work may be applicable to their specific degree plan.




Abbreviation for Undergraduate Affairs (


Abbreviation for the University of Louisville Transfer Program. This program is designed to assist students in transferring to the University of Louisville. ULtra currently has offices on the Downtown, Southwest, and Shelbyville campuses of Jefferson Community and Technical College (

Undecided (UND)

Refers to students who have not yet chosen and/or declared an academic major.



Visiting Student

A visiting student is someone who is regularly enrolled in another institution who registers for courses at the University of Louisville for one semester. Visiting students must be in good standing in their regular college or university.

Visiting Student Letter

A form that grants a student permission to attend another institution as a visitor while enrolled as a University of Louisville student. The form must be completed by the student’s academic advisor and submitted to the Registrar’s Office at UofL in order for the credits taken at another institution (while enrolled as a UofL student) to be accepted. (



Walk-In Advising

An advising option that is used by some advising centers. In walk-in situations, students wishing to be advised can be seen by an advisor on a drop-in, first-come, first-served basis. Walk-in advising typically occurs during peak registration times. Please check with your advising center to learn when walk-in advising may be offered.

Withdrawal (W)

A “W” represents withdrawal from a course on a student’s transcript.