Registration and Credit

[1] Orientation, Advising, and Registration

The academic year beginning in August comprises two semesters and a summer session.

The university assists students in adjusting to college life. An effort is made to promote self-respect, personal and school pride, and honor so that students may become responsibly self-directing, not only in campus and off-campus experiences, but in later experiences as individuals, professional persons, and citizens.

Several orientation programs are offered to assist freshmen and transfer students. A summer orientation program gives students and parents an opportunity to learn more about UCA, its services and programs, and to advance register for fall semester classes. Immediately prior to the beginning of the fall and the spring semesters, orientation sessions are offered for freshmen and transfer students. Orientation sessions focus on providing students with information to help them succeed at UCA.

The university makes available detailed information about registration procedures and dates. All students are expected to follow established procedures to register for courses during the dates specified for each academic term. Credit is not awarded in any course for which the student is not duly registered. Once registered, a student will be considered officially enrolled unless they officially withdraw from the university before the first date of classes for the term.

Each student is responsible for planning a program of study and for meeting requirements for graduation. Students should become familiar with curricular requirements, course sequences (indicated by course numbering and prerequisites), upper-and lower-division requirements, the unit of credit, and the normal study load limit.

All students receive assistance of a faculty advisor. First-year freshmen and students who have not declared a major will receive advising from the Academic Advising Center in Harrin 100. Declared students in their sophomore year or higher will receive advising from their major advisor within the department in which the major is located. It is ultimately the responsibility of all students to be informed of all regulations and requirements and to monitor progress toward a successful university experience, including meeting any and all requirements for a degree from UCA.

[2] Changes in Registration/Withdrawal from Courses or the University

During the standard change-of-course period specified in the academic calendar, a student can electronically add or drop courses using the online registration system. It is recommended that students check with their advisor and the Office of Student Financial Aid prior to changing their course selections. To add a course after the change-of-course period, a student must submit a schedule exception form approved by the course instructor, the department chair, the dean of the college, and their advisor. Information posted on the Registrar’s website (e.g., academic calendar, withdrawal information) outlines procedures and lists dates for course changes.

A student may officially withdraw from a course or the university so long as the withdrawal is within the dates specified in the academic calendar for the semester. If a student withdraws from a course or the university during the change-of-course period, no grade will be recorded.

After the change-of-course period, a withdrawal grade (W) will be recorded according to the deadlines specified in the academic calendar for the semester.

If a student discontinues attendance without officially withdrawing, an instructor may drop the student for non-attendance and report a withdrawal grade (W), but must do so by the deadline date for a student to officially withdraw specified in the academic calendar for the semester.

[3] Auditing a Course

A student may audit a course with the permission of the instructor and the Office of the Registrar if such enrollment is indicated at the time of registration. Changes from “Credit” to “Audit” must be made within the late registration period. As an auditor the student does not take examinations or receive credit. An auditor must comply with the instructor’s attendance requirements. Fees for an audit course are the same a those for a credit course.

[4] Classification of Students

Since all of the undergraduate courses of the university are integral parts of four-year curricula, students are designated as freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors:

Freshman: A student who has less than 30 semester hours credit
Sophomore: A student who has 30 semester hours credit
Junior: A student who has 60 semester hours credit
Senior: A student who has 90 or more semester hours credit

The post-baccalaureate student is one who possesses a baccalaureate degree, is not a graduate student, and is registered in courses for undergraduate credit. A post-baccalaureate student may elect a program of study beyond the baccalaureate degree but will not be classified as a graduate student and may not enroll for graduate credit.

A student must be officially admitted to the Graduate School before being eligible to enroll in graduate-level courses.

[5] Course Numbers

The numbering of courses has the following significance:

  1. The first digit indicates the level of the course:
    1. 1000: Courses designed for beginning students
    2. 2000: Second-level courses, often in the sequential development of programs representing a higher level of sophistication than the 1000-level courses
    3. 3000: Third-level courses open to both sophomores and upper-division students
    4. 4000: Courses open only to juniors and seniors
    5. 5000 & higher: Graduate courses open only to students admitted to graduate-level study
  2. The second digit indicates the amount of credit. A course numbered 1300 is a freshman course giving three semester hours of credit.
  3. The last two digits distinguish a course from others offered by the same department.

[6] Credit Hours and Course Loads

The unit of credit at the university is the semester hour. A semester hour is defined as the credit earned for the successful completion of one hour per week in class for one semester, or a minimum of two hours per week of laboratory work for one semester. Each lecture hour suggests a minimum of two hours preparation on the part of the student.

The minimum number of semester hours per semester for classification as a full-time undergraduate student is twelve. The maximum number of semester hours in which a student with less than a B average (3.0) may enroll is eighteen. A student who has an overall GPA of 3.0 or a GPA of 3.0 in the preceding semester may, with the approval of the advisor, department chair, college Dean and Office of the Registrar, schedule a maximum of twenty-one hours for the following semester. A request to take more than twenty-one hours in a semester will require written approval from the student’s advisor, major department chair, college dean, and provost.

For the summer session, the minimum load for classification as a full-time student is based on the length in the course of study. For a five-week course of study, four semester hours is the normal minimum load required for classification as a full-time student, and seven semester hours is the normal maximum allowable. A request to take more than a maximum load in a summer term will require written approval from the student’s advisor, major department chair, and college dean.

To be eligible for graduation with a baccalaureate degree, a student must complete a program of study that contains at least 120 semester hours of unduplicated credit – of which at least 40 hours must be upper-division – or more if the curriculum requires it.

[7] The Credit, No-Credit Grading Option

The credit, no-credit grading option is designed to provide the opportunity for a student to explore academic areas that are not included in required areas of study.

A junior or senior student in good standing (i.e., eligible to be enrolled at UCA) may take one elective course each semester (for a maximum of four courses) under the credit, no-credit option. These courses will not be permitted to satisfy UCA Core, degree, or major and minor (graduation) requirements.

The student must declare an intention to the registrar to receive the “credit, no-credit” designation by the close of the late registration period and may not change to grade status during the term. Passing work will receive credit; failing work, no-credit. In either event, the course will not calculate in the grade point average.

The above regulations do not apply to courses that are graded only on a credit, no-credit basis.

[8] Credit by Examination

A student may present no more than 30 hours credit earned through examination toward the associate or baccalaureate degrees.

[8.1] CLEP: College Level Examination Program

The College Level Examination Program (CLEP) allows a student to receive university credit and/or satisfy university requirements. The university permits a student to take either the general examinations or specific subject examinations to earn college credit for a maximum of thirty hours of UCA Core courses. No student may use test scores in lieu of courses in the major or minor, except in instances where UCA Core requirements and major or minor requirements overlap.

CLEP credit may be awarded to those students who have met the minimum score requirement set by the university, have not already satisfied the UCA Core requirement, and have not begun the course for which credit is sought. All examinations must be taken before the end of the semester in which a student is enrolled for the 75th hour.

When a student has satisfactorily completed the examination and has earned 12 hours in residence at the university, credit will be recorded and designated CLEP on the student’s permanent record. However, the result of CLEP examinations will not be used in computing a student’s grade point average. Thirty semester hours is the maximum examination credit allowed. To earn credit in writing, the examination must be taken before the student begins the course(s) for which credit is sought. Credit for successful completion of these examinations is recorded at the end of the term in which the scores are received. Students should apply directly to the test center where the test is to be taken. A transcript of scores must be sent to the Office of the Registrar.

College credit on each of the CLEP examinations is awarded as follows:

CLEP ExaminationUCA CoursesScoreHours Credit
College CompositionWRTG 1310503
WRTG 1310 and/or 1320603-6
Natural SciencesBIOL 1400 & PHYS 1400508
College MathematicsMATH 1360503
College AlgebraMATH 1390483
HumanitiesART 2300503
Social Sciences & HistoryAwards 3 hours of General Elective credit493
History of the United States I: Early Colonization to 1877HIST 2301493
History of the United States II: 1865 to the PresentHIST 2302503
Western Civilization I: Ancient Near East to 1648HIST 1310503
Western Civilization II: 1648 to the PresentHIST 1320483
A maximum of 9 hours may be awarded in History.
American GovernmentPSCI 1330513
Introductory PsychologyPSYC 1300513
Introductory SociologySOC 1300513

The CLEP Social Studies-History test will be awarded “general elective” credit (not “UCA Core” or “general education” credit) with a score of 49 or higher and count in the 120-hour minimum for graduation. It is not applicable to any UCA Core or program requirements.

A UCA Core requirement in history can be satisfied by passing subject examinations in World History I and/or World History II. The requirement of one course in American history or US government may be satisfied by passing subject examinations in those areas. It is also possible to earn credit on subject examinations in college algebra, general psychology, and introductory sociology.

[8.2] DSST

Credit is awarded for successful completion of a DSST exam on a case-by-case basis. If this applies to you, contact the Office of the Registrar: phone (501) 450-5200; or email

[8.3] Advanced Placement Program

The University of Central Arkansas is a participant in the Advanced Placement Program. A list of AP subject areas, courses, and exams; UCA minimum score bases for credit; and UCA credit awarded are detailed in the table below.

Scores for AP subject areas/exams not included in this table will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Contact the Office of the Registrar if this applies to you: phone (501) 450-5200; or email

A statewide Advanced Placement (AP) Policy has been adopted by the Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board (AHECB), effective for first-time undergraduates entering for Fall 2018. The policy sets forth minimum scores and the ACTS courses for which, at a minimum, credit must be awarded. Institutions are permitted to award credit for higher-level courses than specified in the policy, and in a few cases, UCA programs have decided to do so. The AHECB policy may be accessed here; in the table, ACTS index numbers are indicated where relevant in relation to the new policy. The establishment of ACTS reference courses is intended to increase transferability of AP credit within Arkansas.

AP Subject Areas / ExamsScoreUCA Credit
Art / Art History3ART 2300 Art Appreciation [ACTS: ARTA1003]
4ART 2335 Art History
5ART 2335 Art History and 3 hours art history elective
Art / Studio Art: Drawing Portfolio4ART 1321 Drawing I
5ART 1321 Drawing I and 3 hours studio art elective
Art / 2-D Design Portfolio4ART 1310 Design I| 2-D
5ART 1310 Design I| 2-D and 3 hours general studio art elective
Art / 3-D Design Portfolio4ART 2312 Design II| 3-D
5ART 2312 Design II| 3-D and 3 hours general studio art elective
Biology / Biology3BIOL 1400 Exploring Concepts in Biology [ACTS: BIOL1004]
4BIOL 1440 Principles of Biology I
5BIOL 1440 Principles of Biology I and BIOL 1441 Principles of Biology II
Calculus / AB3MATH 1496 Calculus I [ACTS: MATH2405]
Calculus / BC3MATH 1496 Calculus I and MATH 1497 Calculus II [ACTS: MATH2505]
Chemistry3CHEM 1400 Chemistry in Society [ACTS: CHEM1004]
4CHEM 1450 College Chemistry I
5CHEM 1450 College Chemistry I and CHEM 1451 College Chemistry II
Chinese (Mandarin) / Languages3CHIN 2320 Intermediate Chinese II
Chinese (Mandarin) / Language4CHIN 3300/3303 Advanced Chinese Grammar I and II
Chinese (Mandarin) / Language5CHIN 3380 Advanced Composition and Textual Analysis
Computer Science / A3CSCI 1470 Computer Science I
Computer Science Principles3CSCI 1340 Introduction to Programming I
Economics / Macroeconomics3ECON 2320 Principles of Macroeconomics [ACTS: ECON2103]
Economics / Microeconomics3ECON 2321 Principles of Microeconomics [ACTS: ECON2203]
English / Language and Composition3WRTG 1310 Introduction to College Writing [ACTS: ENGL1013]
4WRTG 1310 Introduction to College Writing and WRTG 1320 Academic Writing
English / Literature and Composition3WRTG 1310 Introduction to College Writing
4WRTG 1310 Introduction to College Writing and WRTG 1320 Academic Writing
English / International English Language (APIEL)3TOEFL score of 500 (see "admission of students whose first language is not English")
Environmental Science / Environmental Science43 hours general lower-division elective credit
French / Language3FREN 2310 Intermediate French I [ACTS: FREN2013]
4FREN 2320 Intermediate French II
5FREN 3300 Advanced Grammar and Composition I
German / Language3GERM 2310 Intermediate German I [ACTS: GERM2013]
4GERM 2320 Intermediate German II
5GERM 3300 Advanced Grammar and Composition I
Geography / Human Geography3GEOG 1320 Human Geography [ACTS: GEOG1113]
Government and Politics / Comparative4PSCI 1330 US Government and Politics
Government and Politics / United States3PSCI 1330 US Government and Politics [ACTS: PLSC2003]
History / European4HIST 1320 World History II
History / United States3HIST 2302 American Nation II [ACTS: HIST2123]
History / United States5HIST 2301 & HIST 2302 American Nation I & II
History / World3HIST 1320 World History II [ACTS: HIST1123]
History / World5HIST 1310 & HIST 1320 World History I & II
Japanese / Language3JAPN 2310 Intermediate Japanese I
Japanese / Language4 or 5JAPN 2320 Intermediate Japanese II
Music / Music Theory3MUS 2300 Music Appreciation [ACTS: MUSC1003]
4MUS 1230 Harmony I
5MUS 1230 Harmony I, MUS 1232 Harmony II, and MUS 1231 Ear Training I
Physics 13PHYS 1410 College Physics 1 [ACTS: PHYS2014]
Physics 23PHYS 1420 College Physics 2 [ACTS: PHYS2024]
Physics / C: Mechanics4PHYS 1441 University Physics 1
Physics / C: Electricity and Magnetism4PHYS 1442 University Physics 2
Psychology / Psychology3PSYC 1300 General Psychology [ACTS: PSYC1103]
Spanish / Language3SPAN 2310 Intermediate Spanish II [ACTS: SPAN2023]
4SPAN 2320 Intermediate Spanish III
5SPAN 3300 Advanced Grammar and Composition
Spanish / Literature3SPAN 2320 Intermediate Spanish III
4SPAN 3300 Advanced Grammar and Composition
5SPAN 3320 Spanish Literature or 3321 Spanish American Literature
Statistics / Statistics3MATH 3311 Statistical Methods
MATH 2311 Elementary Statistics [ACTS: MATH2103]
See note in Change Log.

In any discipline (except history) in which Advanced Placement credit is earned, no CLEP credit will be allowed for any course lower than that course for which Advanced Placement credit has been awarded. A transcript of scores must be sent to the Office of the Registrar.

[8.4] International Baccalaureate Program

The University of Central Arkansas recognizes achievement in the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program by awarding credit towards relevant UCA courses. Credit is awarded for the following courses based on achieving the listed minimum exam score in the IB subject area at either the standard level (SL) or the higher level (HL) as designated.

IB Subject/LevelScoreUCA Credit
Biology/HL5BIOL 1440 Principles of Biology I
7BIOL 1440 Principles of Biology I and BIOL 1441 Principles of Biology II
Chemistry/HL5CHEM 1450 College Chemistry I
7CHEM 1450 College Chemistry I and CHEM 1451 College Chemistry II
Economics/HL5ECON 2310 Global Environment of Business
Classical Languages: Latin/HL5LAT 1320 Elementary Latin II
6LAT 2310 Intermediate Latin I
History Route 1: Europe and the Islamic World/HL5History elective
History Route 2: 20th Century World History/HL5History elective
Language A: Literature/HL5ENGL 1350 Introduction to Literature
Language A: Language and Literature/HL5WRTG 1310 Introduction to College Writing
Language B: Chinese/HL5CHIN 1420 Elementary Chinese II
6CHIN 2310 Intermediate Chinese I
7CHIN 2320 Intermediate Chinese II
Language B: French/HL5FREN 1320 Elementary French II
6FREN 2310 Intermediate French I
7FREN 2320 Intermediate French II
Language B: German/HL5GERM 1320 Elementary German II
6GERM 2310 Intermediate German I
7GERM 2320 Intermediate German II
Language B: Japanese/HL5JAPN 1320 Elementary Japanese II
6JAPN 2310 Intermediate Japanese I
Language B: Spanish/HL5SPAN 1320 Elementary Spanish II
6SPAN 2310 Intermediate Spanish II
7SPAN 2320 Intermediate Spanish III
Mathematical Studies/SL or HL5MATH 1496 Calculus I
Music/SL or HL4MUS 2300 Music Appreciation
Physics/HL5PHYS 1410 College Physics 1
7PHYS 1410 College Physics 1 and PHYS 1420 College Physics 2
Psychology/HL5PSYC 1300 General Psychology

Credit for UCA courses may be awarded for other IB courses on a case-by-case basis with a minimum exam score of 5.

[8.5] Credit by Examination in Foreign Languages

A student who has studied a foreign language in high school may receive university credit under certain conditions. See the Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures section of this bulletin.

[8.6] Course Exemptions and Challenge Examinations

University departments may specify appropriate placement, exemption, or challenge examinations for UCA Core requirements or for major or minor requirements. Advanced placement does not excuse a student from taking the total number of hours specified in such programs.