Jul 24, 2024  
2018-2019 Catalog SVC 
2018-2019 Catalog SVC [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Policies & Regulations

Grading Procedure
Evaluation of student performance is the prerogative of course instructors as follows:
Classification Letter Grade Grade Points
Excellent: A 4.00
Above Average: A- 3.70
B+ 3.30
B 3.00
Average: B- 2.70
C+ 2.30
C 2.00
Below Average: C- 1.70
D+ 1.30
D 1.00
Failing: F 0.00
Grade not received from instructor * Not Counted
Incomplete I Not Counted
Audit N Not Counted
Pass P Not Counted
Ceased Attendance (Comm. Ed.) V Not Counted
Withdrawal W Not Counted
In Progress/Re-register (BeDA & AESL) Y Not Counted
Course Repeated Grade+R Not Counted
Statute of Limitations Grade+* Not Counted

Earning College Credits

The standard academic year is divided into three quarters of approximately 11 weeks each, plus a summer session of approximately 8 weeks. One credit is allowed for each lecture period or two hours of laboratory per week. The laboratory period may consist of two or more clock hours. For each period of lecture or discussion, the average student should allow two hours of outside preparation.

A carefully planned course of 15 or more college-level credits per quarter will may give you sufficient credits to graduate in two years. These credits should be chosen according to an organized curriculum developed under the guidance of an advisor.

If you are a degree-seeking student, you are strongly encouraged to have your schedule of classes reviewed by your advisor. The following course credit loads require an advisor’s approval:

  • 21 or more academic course credits
  • 22 or more professional-technical course credits.

Prior Learning

Prior learning is the knowledge and skills gained through work and life experience; through military training and experience; and through formal and informal education and training from in-state and out-of-state institutions, including foreign institutions. For information, contact the Dean of Workforce Education at 360.416.7802.

Credit for Prior Learning

Currently enrolled SVC students may earn college credit based upon prior learning when they demonstrate by examination or evaluation that their professional experience or substantial prior learning meets the specific outcomes of a SVC course. Each department determines the evaluation method students use to demonstrate mastery of the course content. Students seeking to acquire this form of college credits should complete the Petition for Non-Traditional Credit: For Prior Learning form and submit the form and all documentation supporting their request to the Department Chair for the program that oversees the course(s) the student is challenging. A maximum of 30 credits is allowed for this method and there is a $60 per credit transcription fee associated with this request. Certain pre-approved training programs may qualify for a Pre-Approved Prior Learning Assessment Fee of $250 for up to 30 credits of transcribed credit.

Advanced Standing

The purpose of Advanced Standing is to replace a required course with prior experience in military work/military schools or relevant employment in industry that can be documented by employment records or through testing. Students seeking advanced standing credit should do so upon entry to Skagit Valley College by completing the Petition for Non-Traditional Credit: Advanced Standing Request form and submit the form and all documentation (including appropriate transcripts, DD295s, Joint Service Transcript (JST), or industry training documents) supporting their request to the Dean of Workforce Education. Once awarded, Advanced Standing gives you prerequisites necessary for registration for courses that will count toward your certificate/ diploma. For example: a student who holds a current CPR/First Aid card from an approved agency may request a waiver of PE 200 as a requirement for their degree. Students who receive advanced standing must still complete a minimum of 90 credits to graduate with an Associate of Technical Arts Degree.

Note: this option only eliminates the requirement for the class but does not count as credits toward attainment of a degree. In the example offered, a student with a valid CPR card would not need to take the 2-credit PE 200 class but will still need a minimum of 90 credits overall to graduate with a degree.

Standardized Tests

Non-traditional credits include credit by nationally standardized tests such as College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and DANTES, military, vocational, and other non-accredited training programs, independent study, and other appropriate educational experiences. Students who request to be tested in a specific subject area using a nationally standardized test (such as the College Level Examination Program or American Chemical Society tests) and score at or above the national reference standard or at a minimum level which shall be decided by the various departments.

Students who request to be tested in broad areas of General Education such as natural science or humanities, may be granted a maximum of 45 credits (depending on the degree type, see below “Application of Non-Traditional Credit”) through CLEP general examinations (not to exceed 9 credits per exam) or other similar nationally standardized tests.

Challenging an SVC Course

Credit by Examination

The following regulations have been established for awarding credit by examination:

  1. Students may not receive credit by examination for subject matter less advanced than that for which they have previously received credit.
  2. No student shall be permitted to repeat any examination for advanced credit.
  3. Students may not challenge courses they have previously audited, failed or challenged and failed.
  4. Students may not receive credit by examination for lower division (100 and 200-level) language courses in the student’s native language.
  5. Students may not request credit by examination for any course in which they are currently enrolled.

The following is the process students should follow to request credit by examination:

  1. Students who request to be tested in a specific course must have faculty, department/division chair, and dean approval. Forms may be obtained from the Enrollment Services. Approved forms must be returned at Enrollment Services with appropriate payment.
  2. The student pays a course challenge fee of $2.00 per course credit. The student also pays the tuition for the course itself.
  3. The student receives a receipt. The student submits the receipt for the challenge to the instructor and arranges a time with the instructor to take the exam.
  4. The instructor grades the exam and indicates the grade for the course on the receipt and signs it.
  5. The instructor submits the signed receipt with the grade at Enrollment Services.
  6. The course grade based on the challenge exam is posted on the student’s transcript.

Advanced Placement, Cambridge International and International Baccalaureate

Entering students who have completed advanced placement courses in high school and have taken the Advanced Placement Program (AP) examinations should have the official College Board transcript showing their results sent at Enrollment Services at the Mount Vernon Campus. See the AP Test Score Equivalencies Table.

Entering freshmen who have completed such courses but who have not taken the AP examinations may apply for college credit by examination or for advanced placement only. Credit earned through AP exams do not count toward the SVC residency requirement.

Skagit Valley College will grant a minimum elective credit for each Cambridge International Examination for A-level exam with a passing grade or above for approved examinations. Credit will be awarded on the basis of official Cambridge International Examination results, not transcript notation. Duplicate credit for the same subject taken on different exams will not be granted. No grades are posted for A-level exams.

Skagit Valley College will grant a minimum elective credit for an International Baccalaureate (IB) Higher Level (HL) exam score of 5 or higher. Credit will be awarded on the basis of official IB results, not transcript notation.

Military Service Schools

At Skagit Valley College (SVC), we use the following procedures to ensure every veteran receives the maximum amount of college credit for military training possible. Military credits are considered to be “non-traditional” credits.

  • SVC evaluates every civilian and military transcript received from active duty military and veterans pursuing an education at SVC.
  • SVC accepts the Joint Service Transcript (JST) as an official education transcript.
  • SVC uses the American Council on Education (ACE) “A Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services” as a guide. ACE translates military courses and occupations into academic credit recommendations and provides guidelines to interpret and recommend credit for college courses.
  • A maximum of up to 40 credits for non-traditional learning may be granted toward the Associate in Arts General Studies degree: a maximum of 27 credits may apply to the “gray area” elective requirements, 3 credits may apply to the Physical Education requirement and 10 credits may apply to the Science & Technology requirement.
  • For the Associate in Arts Direct Transfer Agreement (DTA) degree, the Associate in Business DTA degree and the Associate in Pre-Nursing DTA degree, a maximum of up to 15 non-traditional credits may be applied to the Physical Education requirement and to the “gray area” elective requirements.
  • For the Associate in Science transfer degrees and the Associate in Biology DTA, a maximum of up to 6 non-traditional credits may be applied to the “gray area” elective requirements.
  • For the Associate in Technical Arts degrees and/or certificate programs, a maximum of up to 30 non-traditional credits may be applied toward departmental requirements as approved by the department chair and appropriate dean.
  • For the Associate in Arts General Studies degree, a maximum of up to 45 credits for non-traditional learning may be granted: a maximum of 32 credits may apply to the “gray area” elective requirements, 3 credits may apply to the Physical Education requirement, and 10 credits may apply to the Science & Technology requirement.
  • In some circumstances, minimum resident credits requirements may be waived for active duty military personnel pursuing an SVC program.
  • For academic/transfer programs, military courses marked with “V”, “U” or “G” are generally not accepted. For some professional/technical programs, military courses marked with “V”, “U” or “G” are accepted on a case-by-case basis as determined by the department chair and/or appropriate dean.
  • Any remaining ACE credits on transcripts that do not match any courses in pursuit of any program of study will be accepted as elective credits whenever possible.
  • All military credits must be reviewed and evaluated for a student’s current program of study by the end of their 3rd quarter.
  • VA students may not opt out of a transcript evaluation.
  • A list of professional/technical career pathways that enables students to learn about options and opportunities to navigate their own education and career plans can be found on the SVC website.

AP Test Score Equivalencies at Washington SBCTCs

The chart included on this page represents the minimum credit/courses awarded for each Advanced Placement (AP) exam, recognized by all community and technical colleges in Washington. Please check with the institution you are attending for specifics about how credit is awarded. This page also includes the State/SBCTC policy (4.60.14) for awarding credit for AP scores.

4.60.14 Advanced Placement: Washington state community and technical colleges will award unrestricted elective credit for an Advanced Placement (AP) score of 3 or higher. Credit will be awarded on the basis of official AP results, not transcript notation. Credits granted for general education or major requirements will be specified by the receiving institution’s AP credit policies; otherwise, elective credit will be granted.

AP Test Score Courses and Credits listed below are the minimum awarded per score
Art: Art History 3-5 ART& 100  (5)
Art: Studio Art - Drawing
Elective (5)
Humanities Distribution (5)
Art: 2D Design 3
Elective (5)
Humanities Distribution (5)
Art: 3D Design 3
Elective (5)
Humanities Distribution (5)
Biology 3-5 BIOL& 100 , BIOL& 160  (5) 
Calculus AB 3-5 MATH& 151  (5)
Calculus BC 3-5 MATH& 151  or MATH& 152  (5)
Chemistry 3-5 CHEM& 121  or CHEM& 161  (5)
Chinese Language & Culture 3
CHIN& 121  (5)
CHIN& 121  CHIN& 122  (5)
CHIN& 121  CHIN& 122  CHIN& 123  (10)
Computer Science A 3-5 Elective (5)
Economics: Micro 3-5 ECON& 201  (5)
Economics: Macro 3-5 ECON& 202  (5)
English: Lang & Comp 3
Elective (5)
ENGL& 101  (5)
English: Lit & Comp 3
Elective (5)
ENGL& 101  (5)
Environmental Science 3
ENVS& 100 (5)
ENVS& 100, ENVS& 101  (5)
European History 3-5 HIST& 116 , HIST& 117 , or HIST& 118  (5)
French Language & Culture
FRCH& 121  (5)
FRCH& 121 FRCH& 122  (5)
FRCH& 121  FRCH& 122  FRCH& 123  (10)
US Government & Politics 3
Elective (5)
POLS& 202  (5)
Comparative Government & Politics 3
Elective (5)
POLS& 101  (5)
POLS& 101 , POLS& 201 (5) 
Human Geography 3-5 GEOG& 200 (5)
Japanese Language 3
JAPN& 121  (5)
JAPN& 121  JAPN& 122  (5)
JAPN& 121  JAPN& 122  JAPN& 123  (10)
Latin Literature & Culture 3
Elective (5)
Humanities Distribution (5)
Music Theory 3
MUSC& 131
MUSC& 131, MUSC& 141   (5)
Physics 1 3
Elective (5)
Elective (5) / PHYS& 114, PHYS& 134  (5)
Physics 2 3
Elective (5)
Elective (5) / PHYS& 115, PHYS& 135  (5)
Physics C (Mechanics) 3
Elective (5)
Elective (5) / PHYS& 221 (5)
Physics C (Elect. & Mag.) 3-5 Elective (5)
Elective (5) / PHYS& 223 (5)
Psychology 3
Elective (5)
PSYC& 100  (5)
Spanish Language & Culture 3
SPAN& 121  (5)
SPAN& 121 , SPAN& 122  (5)
SPAN& 121 , SPAN& 122 , SPAN& 123  (10)
Spanish Literature & Culture 3
SPAN& 121  (5)
SPAN& 121 , SPAN& 122  (5)
SPAN& 121 , SPAN& 122 , SPAN& 123 ​ (10)
Statistics 3-5 MATH& 146  (5)
U.S. History 3-4 / 5 HIST& 136, HIST& 137, HIST& 146 HIST& 147 HIST& 148 , HIST& 156, HIST& 157, HIST& 158, HIST& 159 (5) / (10)
World History 3-5 HIST& 126 , HIST& 127 , or HIST& 128  (5)


Through the Waiver of Requirements Process, a student asks the college to remove a particular program requirement due to successful completion of other post-secondary courses, which overall, constitute equal content.The minimum credit requirement is still required to complete a degree or certificate program. (NOTE: The waiver process would be used only if no other process would satisfy the student’s needs.)

Transferring in Credit

From Other Colleges

Oficial transcripts from regionally accredited collegs and/or universityes, or other learning experiences will be evaluated upon request. The following types of courses do not transfer, regardless of an institution’s accreditation: remedial courses, developmental coursework, and college courses numbered below 100 (however, these courses may be used for placement purposes); courses that provide instruction in a particular religious doctrine; and non-credit continuing education courses. Courses not applicable for distribution requirements are assigned as elective credit up to the maximum allowable. If there are questions of interpretation in designating distribution credits for classes taken previously, you may apply to the appropriate instructional dean for review.

Upper-division courses (300 and above) are not generally accepted for transfer credit.  Exceptions are made on a case-by-case basis for certain professional/ technical programs. The college does not accept upper-division courses for academic/ transfer programs.

Application of credits to the AA-DTA Degree

Credits transferred in from other regionally accredited colleges, SVC professional/technical programs, and credits earned by students who had a break in enrollment for two years.

  1. Students transferring 45 or more applicable college credits are exempt from the Integrative Learning Experience and Diversity course requirements.
  2. Students transferring 30-44 applicable college credits are required to complete one Integrative Learning Experience and one Diversity course.
  3. Students transferring 0-29 credits are required to complete two Integrative Learning Experiences and one Diversity course.

Application of non-traditional credit

Associate in Arts-Direct Transfer Agreement (AA-DTA), Associate in Business DTA/MRP, Associate in Pre-Nursing DTA/MRP

A maximum of 15 credits through examination, independent study, CLEP, military programs, or professional/technical credits may be applied only as elective credits.

Associate in Science-Track 1 and 2 and Associate in Biology DTA/MRP Degree

A maximum of 6 credits through examination, independent study, CLEP, military programs, or professional/technical credits may be applied only as elective credits.

Associate in Arts (AA) General Studies

A maximum of 45 credits may be applied toward the distribution requirements (subject areas) or as elective credits.

Associate in Technical Arts Degree or Certificate Programs

A maximum of 30 credits may be applied if approved by the department chair and appropriate instructional dean.

Catalog Under Which Coursework Will Be Evaluated

Students continuously enrolled fall through spring will be evaluated under the requirements in effect at the time of initial enrollment. Students not enrolled for a minimum of one quarter (excluding summer) will be evaluated under the requirements in effect at the time of re-enrollment.

If a student has applied for a diploma and has not met requirements in effect at the time of initial enrollment or under the requirements in effect when they applied for a diploma, but would meet requirements under the certificate or degrees currently in effect, they will be evaluated under the most recent requirements, regardless of their enrollment status. This catalog is in effect from Summer 2018 to Spring 2019.

Grade Reports

At the end of each quarter, grade reports are available online at MySVC and are not mailed. Unofficial Transcripts are available at the Kiosk or online at MySVC. Official transcripts are available by submitting a transcript request though the Student Clearinghouse at www.getmytranscript.com.

I (Incomplete)

An “I” or incomplete grade may be given at the end of a quarter, where in the judgment of the instructor the student should have reasonable expectation of passing the course, but has not completed the required work to justify assignment of a grade. The student must make appropriate arrangements to complete the missing work. This work must be completed within one quarter, or an “F” (fail) will automatically be assigned.  An Incomplete Contract should be completed between the instructor and student identifying all remaining coursework. 

N (Audit)

Students may audit a course with the permission of the instructor and the Associate Dean of Enrollment Services. An audit grade of “N” indicates the student has registered in and attended a course without writing examinations, submitting work, papers, lab reports, etc. Attendance is required.

P (Pass)

A  Pass (P)  grade may be assigned in lieu of all grades from A to D. A “P” grade would be assigned after consultation between the student and the instructor, and indicated pass, with credit, but grade points are not calculated in the GPA.

V (Ceased Attendance)

Students who register for a Community Education course and cease attendance, but do not withdraw, may be awarded a “V” grade by the instructor. The “V” grade is not counted in the calculation of the GPA.

W (Withdrawal)

During the first two weeks of the quarter, students may officially withdraw from a Course without notation on the permanent student record.

From week three through the Friday before finals week, students may officially withdraw from a course with a “W” noted on their permanent student record. The last day to withdraw from all courses is the last day of finals week.

Y (In Progress/Re-Register)

Students enrolled in Basic Education for Adults (ABE, ESL, HSC) and Academic English as a Second Language (AESL) courses may be assigned a “Y” grade, when the instructor deems the student has been actively working but has not yet achieved a sufficient skill level to justify a passing grade.

R (Course Repeated)

The course has been repeated and the lowest grade and grade points have been removed from the GPA calculation. Students must request a “repeat card” at the time of registration.

* (Statute of Limitations)

If a “D” or “F” is marked with an asterisk (*), the grade has been removed from the GPA calculation by the Statute of Limitations. The Statute of Limitations is also noted as a post-quarter comment. See Statute of Limitations under Academic Standing.

Grade Changes

All grade changes must be submitted by the instructor on the Grade Change Form located in the Instructor briefcase.

The following time limits have been established regarding grade changes:

  • Grade changes MUST be made within two quarters of the original registration.
  • Grade changes will not be made after two quarters, unless documentation can be provided to the Registrar by the instructor that the grade was awarded in error.
  • Grade changes will be made at any time if due to recording error. Students are advised to contact the instructor immediately if a grade has been recorded incorrectly. Errors and omissions will be corrected as soon as identified without cost to the student.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated by dividing the total grade points received by the total grade point credits attempted. Please refer to Grading Information for the grades assigned for each letter grade, e.g., A = 4.00, B = 3.00 grade points.

When Incomplete (I) grades are replaced with letter grades, grade points and credit hours attempted are added to the formula to compute the new GPA.

Please note: the Cumulative GPA includes all courses taken, at any level, for which a grade was assigned. College-Level GPA includes only courses numbered 100 and above. Credits transferred from another institution are not included in any SVC GPA calculation.


All students are required to take regularly scheduled tests and examinations as prescribed by the instructor. If you miss an examination, it is your responsibility to contact the instructor and, if permitted by the course syllabus, schedule a makeup test as soon as possible.

Final examinations are held at the end of each quarter and are listed in the Final Examination Schedule. Permission for a special test or examination must come from the instructor.

Class Add/Drop

  • All changes of program (class adds or drops) must be recorded by Enrollment Services.
  • All course adds in sequential courses must be made prior to the 10th instructional day of the quarter unless approved.
  • Continuous enrollment courses may be added anytime unless they are closed because of class limits. See also Grading Procedures.

Academic Standing

The Academic Standing of all students is based on the following:

Honor Roll

At the conclusion of each quarter, each student’s grade point average is computed. Those students who obtain a grade point average of 3.75 or better and have carried a 12-credit load or more in graded courses are placed on the Honor Roll for the quarter.

Statute of Limitations

Currently enrolled SVC students making satisfactory progress, cumulative GPA of 2.0 or above, who were not enrolled at Skagit Valley College for a period of two or more consecutive years, may petition to have previously earned low grades (D, E, F) removed from their grade point calculation by making a written request to Enrollment Services. The classes will remain in the student’s permanent record; however, they cannot be used toward degree completion. Grades received for these courses will not be included in the Cumulative or College-Level Grade Point Average. For Financial Aid purposes, all credits will still be counted when determining a student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress.

Academic Standards Policy

The provisions of this policy shall be applicable to students enrolled in courses or programs after the tenth instructional day of any quarter.

Academic Alert

A student who has a quarterly Grade Point Average (GPA) below 2.0 for one quarter shall be placed on Academic Alert.

Academic Alert shall be removed from such status at the conclusion of any subsequent quarter during which a student has achieved a quarterly grade point average of 2.0 or higher while enrolled for and completing five or more credits.

Academic Probation

If a student while on Academic Alert whose overall  College-Level Grade Point Average (GPA) falls below 2.0 in the subsequent quarter of his/her enrollment at the college, he/she will be placed on academic probation.

Any student placed on academic probation shall be removed from such status at the conclusion of any quarter during which the student has achieved an overall college-level grade point average of 2.0 or higher.

Dropped: Low Scholarship

If a student, while on academic probation, receives a quarterly Grade Point Average (GPA) below 2.0 in the subsequent quarter of their enrollment at the college, they shall be dropped from enrollment.

A student who has been dropped for low scholarship once, who successfully petitions for re-entry and then receives a grade point average of below 2.0 during the quarter of re-enrollment, shall be dismissed from Skagit Valley College for one year.


A student who has been dismissed at any time for academic reasons set forth in this policy may submit a ‘Petition for Readmission’ form at Enrollment Services after consulting with their advisor.

If the petition is approved by the Associate Dean of Enrollment Services, the student will be readmitted on academic probation and will remain on probation until the student’s cumulative college level GPA exceeds 2.0.

Time to Degree Completion

Pursuant to E2SSB 5135 Skagit Valley College has developed polices to ensure enrolled undergraduates complete degree and certificate programs in a timely manner. These policies address:

  • Students who accumulate more than 125% of the number of credits required to complete their respective associate degree or certificate programs;

  • Students who drop more than 25% of their course load before the grading period for the quarter or semester, which prevents efficient use of instructional resources; and

  • Students who remain on academic probation for more than one quarter or semester.


You are responsible to the instructor of the course for your attendance. An absence due to serious illness or a death in the immediate family may be excused. Even with an excused absence you will be required to make up the content and assignments missed during the absence. In all cases, you must communicate directly with your instructor regarding attendance (refer to the class syllabus).

Absences due to participation in field trips, intercollegiate games and other trips arranged by the college, may be excused with advance notice to your instructor.

Students are entitled to two days of excused absences per academic year for reasons of faith or conscience or for organized activities conducted under the auspices of a religious denomination, church, or religious organization. The academic year is defined as summer through spring quarters. Students’ grades may not be adversely impacted by absences authorized under this policy. For information, see Student Absences for Reasons of Faith or Conscience.

Withdrawal from SVC

If you must withdraw from SVC, complete an add/drop form and submit it at Enrollment Services. You will then be granted honorable dismissal. If you are unable to withdraw in person, you must notify Enrollment Services from your SVC student account that you wish to be withdrawn from the college.

Refund Policy

The following rules address refunds of student tuition and fees:

  • A full refund is given for any course cancelled by the college. It is the student’s responsibility to officially notify Enrollment Services of drop status within the refund period.
  • Refunds for withdrawal from classes will be made as follows:
  • 100% refund if a student officially withdraws through the fifth officially scheduled instructional day of the quarter.
  • 50% refund if a student officially withdraws after the fifth instructional day of the quarter and before the eleventh instructional day of the quarter.
  • For course sections starting prior to the first officially scheduled day of the quarter or after the fifth officially scheduled day of instruction for the quarter, refunds will be calculated for each course section consistent with the above schedule, but using the first day of class in place of the first officially scheduled day of the quarter as used above.
  • The first official day of class for E-Learning is the first day of the quarter.

Per RCW 28B.15.605, no refunds will be given beyond the 20th calendar day of the quarter except as stated in RCW 28B.15.605.

Community Education, Computer Training Institute

A student will receive a 100% refund if the college cancels the class or if the student officially withdraws 48 hours prior to the first class meeting. No refund will be given thereafter. Material fees will not be refunded. Exceptions must be approved by the Community Education Office.

For more information, contact the Community Education Office at 360.416.7638.

Fines & Other Financial Penalties

In order to collect outstanding parking fines, library fines and obligations, or other institutional commitments, the college may:

  • Withhold quarterly grade reports and/or transcripts of permanent records.
  • Refuse to re-enroll a student as is deemed necessary. The student may request an informal hearing on the refusal of services. For more information, see the Associate Dean of Enrollment Services.

Instructional Complaints

If a student feels that s/he has been treated unfairly inside or outside of the classroom, s/he may follow the procedures outlined in the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities. The Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities is found on the SVC website www.skagit.edu/studentrights and is available in the Enrollment Services Office and the Office of Student Life on the Mount Vernon Campus, and in the Student Services Office on the Whidbey Island Campus.