Academic Policies


Academic Probation

If a student fails to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress, s/he may be placed on Academic Probation (AP). The conditions of a student’s AP may:

  • Require the student to raise his/her CGPA by a set deadline.
  • Require the student to take courses during non-mandatory terms.
  • Restrict the student’s travel privileges.
  • Revoke the student’s CPT privileges.

Failure to meet the conditions of a student’s AP may result in administrative withdrawal from the program.

Appealing A Grade

Students who have questions regarding their grade who believe the grade awarded is demonstrably improper by reason of capricious or arbitrary grading should confer directly with the instructor of the course within two weeks of receiving the final grade. Complaints after two weeks are not entertained. Students who are unable to arrive at a mutually agreeable solution may file a final appeal with the Chief Academic Officer. The Chief Academic Officer has the final decision to either change the grade or keep the grade “as is”.

Attendance Requirements

Classroom-Hybrid and F-1 students require physical attendance and active participation to pass a course successfully. Students must make every attempt to be in class during all class meetings. Attendance is strictly monitored. Students may not miss 50% of class sessions or they shall be administratively withdrawn from that course and automatically receive an “F”. Students must maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP). See SAP policy.

Cheating & Plagiarism

IAU is pro-active in dealing with issues of cheating and plagiarism. Faculty members are encouraged to discuss with students academic ethics and the formulation of one’s own intellectual material. It is also the policy of IAU to impose sanctions on students who cheat or plagiarize. Students are expected to be honest in meeting the requirements of courses in which they are enrolled. Cheating or plagiarism is dishonest, undermines the necessary trust upon which relations between students and faculty are based, and is unacceptable conduct. Students who engage in cheating or plagiarism will be subject to academic sanctions, including a lowered or failing grade in a course; and the possibility of an additional administrative sanction, including probation, suspension, or expulsion.

One or more of the following actions are available to the faculty member who suspects a student has been cheating or plagiarizing. The choice of action taken by the faculty member is guided by the extent to which the faculty member considers the cheating or plagiarism reflects the Student’s lack of scholarship or lack of academic performance in the course:

  1. Review – no action
  2. Oral reprimand with emphasis on advising to prevent further occurrence.
  3. Requirement that the work be repeated.
  4. Assignment of “Failure” for the specific work in question.
  5. Withdrawal from the course/program.
  6. Referral to the Dean of the University, as appropriate.

Completion Time

Minimum Completion Time: Students must be enrolled for a minimum of 2 academic terms to complete a certificate, undergraduate degree, or master degree program. Doctoral programs must be completed in no less than three years from the date of initial enrollment.

Maximum Completion Time: Students are required to complete a degree program within 150% of the standard time of completion from the date of initial enrollment.

F-1 Completion Time: F-1 students are required to complete their enrolled academic program within the standard time of completion. Students who need need additional time to complete their academic program can refer to the F-1 PROGRAM EXTENSION POLICY herein.

ProgramStandard (Yrs)
Full Time
Standard (Yrs)
Part Time
150% (Yrs)
Full Time
150% (Yrs)
Part Time
Associate Degree2.553.757.5
Bachelor Degree
Master Degree2436
Doctor Degree48612

Course Registration

A student cannot register for less than 3 semester units in the first session of a term.  Further, it is not recommended that a student enroll in more than 9 units per session. The course load may be challenging. Exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis.

Course Substitution

A course substitution is made when a course is substituted for a required course when a clear relationship exists between the two. A course substitution is warranted in a situation where a given course does not contain equivalencies or changes indicated in the IAU catalog. Furthermore, a course substitution may be used when a newly offered course meets the content and/or spirit of the curriculum requirement that of a formerly offered course. Course substitution(s) shall be completed and submitted from a student support advisor.

Students are limited to a maximum of three (3) course substitutions for each program of study in which they are enrolled, with the exception of quarter credit conversions and other limited exceptions. Substitutions may not be made across unrelated academic disciplines.

F-1 Program Extension

F-1 students are required to complete their programs within the standard program length. F-1 students are expected to accomplish their educational objective by the program end date indicated on the form I-20, Certificate of Eligibility. However, F-1 students may be granted program extension under compelling academic or medical reasons such as:

  1. Change of major or research topic
  2. Unexpected research problems
  3. Documented illness

Prior to granting an extension, a DSO shall evaluate and determine F-1 students’ continuous progress toward earning a degree and maintenance of status. Delays caused by academic probation or expulsion are not acceptable reasons for a program extension.

F-1 Students Annual Vacation

An annual vacation is a term spent during a student’s program of study that does not require registering for a full course of study. F-1 students may also choose to travel outside United States during annual vacation term. F-1 students must seek approval from P/DSO prior to travel outside of the United States and must obtain endorsement Form I–20, “Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status.”

Pursuant to 8 C. F .R §214.2(f), IAU permits eligible F-1 students to have an annual vacation only once per year and the student must intend to enroll for the term following annual vacation. Annual vacation is authorized only during the Summer term. F-1 students are ineligible to take an annual vacation during the mandatory terms (Spring and Fall). In addition, annual vacation shall not be warranted for F-1 students entering the Summer term as their initial /first term.

A P/DSO shall determine annual vacation eligibility prior to authorizing annual vacation. F-1 students must have completed at least one term of full-time enrollment or authorized reduced course load. An annual vacation length cannot exceed the time beyond the Summer term. F-1 students may not register for the following term due to “financial hold”. As such, those students are ineligible for annual vacation.

F-1 students with a pending petition for reinstatement have no annual vacation benefit. If USCIS approves the petition for reinstatement, affirming that there was no violation of F-1 student status, the student may use the time while the petition was pending toward establishing eligibility for annual vacation. A school break (e.g., Spring or Fall break) when school is not in session does not constitute annual vacation.

F-1 students shall be deemed in violation of their non-immigrant status by taking annual vacation inconsistent with 8 CFR 214.2(f)(5)(iii) and its interpretation.

F-1 Students Consecutive Enrollment

Upon official enrollment, all F-1 students are required to register, enroll, and complete two consecutive sessions. F-1 students who do not register, enroll, and complete two consecutive sessions shall have their SEVIS record terminated. Students, who wish to transfer to another SEVP-approved institution before they have register, enroll, and complete one term or two consecutive sessions have not lawfully enrolled full-time. Thus, the F-1 student’s shall be terminated and be transferred in “terminated” status.

F-1 Students Full Time Enrollment

F-1 students are required to enroll full-time for each mandatory Spring and Fall trimester.
F-1 students are required to enroll full-time in the Summer trimester if it is the initial enrollment term.

Undergraduate full-time enrollment: 12 units
Graduate full-time enrollment: 9 units

Financial Hold

Students who are placed on Financial Suspension will have their myIAU account placed on a financial “hold”. A student whose account is on “hold” will not receive any administrative or academic services. Services withheld may include, but is not limited to, class registration, changing status, requesting transcripts, and requesting copies of I-20s. Students must resolve their financial account with the Office of Accounting to be removed from the financial “hold”.

Financial Suspension

A student may be placed on Financial Suspension for failure to pay the tuition and fees as agreed to in the enrollment agreement or payment plan. A student who is placed on Financial Suspension for more than 60 days may be administratively withdrawn from IAU. I-20 students who have been administratively withdrawn from IAU may have their SEVIS record terminated.

General Policy on Grading

It is an integral part of the teaching responsibility of the faculty to provide careful evaluation, timely assignments, and appropriate grades for each enrolled student. In the absence of compelling reasons, such as a mistake, fraud, bad faith, or incompetence, the grade determined by the instructor of record is to be considered final. Final course grades must be submitted by the faculty to the Office of the Academic Affairs no later than two weeks after the session has ended.

Grades & Grade Points

Grades prior to the implementation date (Spring Session 1, 2016) remain as they are recorded using the regular letter grades A, B, C, and D have the suffix plus (+) or minus (-) included to distinguish higher and lower performances within each of these letter grades. The letter grade F does not include the plus/minus distinction. Student performance in courses is indicated by one of following grades. Grades which carry point value, and which are used in determining the grade point average (GPA), were as follows:

PercentileLetter GradeGPA
100 – 95%A4.00
Below 59%

Effective Spring Session 1, 2016, the following grade scale is as follows:

PercentileLetter GradeGPA
100-90%A / PASS4.00
Below 59%F / FAIL0.00

Grades NOT used to compute grade point average:

SEC = Standardized Exam Credit
Withdrawn = Withdrawn Course
Repeat = Repeat Course

The grade “S” was adopted in the current grade scale. At the end of a session, an instructor shall assign grade “S” for students demonstrating satisfactory progress in the doctoral courses (comprehensive examination and project). Students shall receive appropriate credits/units for their course works on their transcripts. The grade “S” shall be excluded from the CGPA computation.

Grades for Course(s) Completed/Academic History

At the end of each session, notification of the student’s academic standing and report of grades achieved are provided to each student via myIAU. Grades are normally provided within one week following the completion of the course. If there are any unpaid charges or other penalties on record against a student, request for transcripts and class grades will be withheld unless arrangements to the contrary have been made in advance with the administration. Any questions regarding a student’s academic history or current academic standing should be referred to the Office of Student Support.


Students have the right to address grievances to an administrative staff. Formal grievances shall be directed to the Chief Executive Officer. The Chief Executive Officer shall immediately investigate the situation and shall have the power to question persons with pertinent information, examine any pertinent materials, and question the student. Within fifteen (15) school days, exclusive of weekends and holidays, of notice to the student, the Chief Executive Officer shall determine whether a complaint shall be filed with the Executive Office. If a complaint is filed, the person against whom the complaint is filed shall receive written notice which shall include the initial report, the factual allegations, a list of witnesses and evidence, the time and place of the hearing, a statement that the accused has the right to be represented by counsel or representative of his/her choice, and an opportunity to review any information gathered by the Chief Executive Officer.


Students who do not demonstrate significant activity in any course in IAUonline within the first 4 weeks may automatically receive an “F” for the course. “Significant activity” shall be determined by the course instructor. Students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).

Late Assignment

Students are expected to meet all deadlines relative to discussions and assignments. Entertaining late work is totally at the discretion of the instructor. Each instructor can establish his/her own policy on late work. The general University policy on late work is that submissions will receive a 10% deduction for each day late and all work after the third day will receive a zero. It is incumbent on each student to plan for potential absences during the semester. The generally acceptable reason for late work is hospitalization with documentation. Work requirements, vacations, family problems, etc. are not generally acceptable excuses.

Loss of CPT/ Work Authorization

Failed Internships Courses – Students who show more than three (3) FAILS for internship courses will no longer be eligible for any future internship courses.

Probation & CPT – F-1 students who do not maintain the minimum CGPA for their enrolled program may not be eligible to register for CPT.

Maximum Course Load

For the first session or term, students are only permitted to enroll in no more than 13 units. Thereafter, the maximum course load for all students in good standing is 9 units per session or 18 units total per term. Exceptions to this policy warrants substantial cause and must be approved by the Program Chair or CAO.

Probation & Summer Term

F-1 students who do not maintain the minimum CGPA for their enrolled program may be required to enroll in one or more 3-unit course each session in the Summer Term to improve their CGPA. Failure to enroll will result in termination of the SEVIS record.

Repeat Course / Grade Change

Students may repeat any course for credit for which they have received a grade below a “C”. All attempts of a given course will appear on the official transcript with the grade(s) earned. The maximum amount of times that a student can take a course is three (3) times. If a student cannot successfully complete a required course by the third time, the student must be advised and seek approval from the Chief Academic Officer to continue in the enrolled program.

This process is not automatic. After completing the successive attempts of a course, a student must submit to the Office of Student Support the REPEAT COURSE GRADE CHANGE FORM and payment for each course repeated. Upon student request, when such repetition has taken place, the selected course(s) will be reflected with a “REPEAT” on the official transcript. The repeated course will not be calculated into the student’s GPA or units earned.

This policy does not imply a guarantee that openings will be available in courses if and when students wish to retake them, and instructors will not ordinarily know whether a student is enrolled in a course for the second time. When a course is repeated all applicable fees apply.If the department or course number has changed since the student completed the first attempt of a course, the department offering the course will verify that the subsequent course is substantially the same and the course repeat policy may apply.

The student will be required to pay for the course again at the tuition rate as stated in the signed enrollment agreement. This will affect the Total Tuition for Program as originally stated in the enrollment agreement.

Satellite Teaching Site

IAU’s Satellite Teaching Sites will offer no more than 49% of the courses required to complete any academic program. The remaining 51%+ of your courses required to complete any academic program will have to be taken at the Main Campus. The maximum number of units a student can take at IAU’s Satellite Teaching Sites for each program is as follows: ASBA 27 units, BBA 57 units, MBA 15 units, DBA (w/o pre-requisites) 24 units, DBA (w/pre-requisites) 30 units.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is defined by three things:

  1. Achieving and maintaining a required Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 2.0 for undergraduate students and 3.0 for graduate students.
  2. Completing a minimum of 67% of courses attempted per term.
  3. Completion of a program in no more than 150% of the set program length. Please note that I-20 students must complete in 100% of the set program length.

At the end of each mandatory term, any student who fails to meet SAP is subject to the following:

  1. If a student fails to maintain SAP, the student will be placed on Academic Probation. The student will be advised and may be required to meet with an academic adviser in person. Failure to meet with an adviser may result in being administratively withdrawn from the program.
  2. If a student fails to maintain SAP for a second consecutive mandatory term, the student stays on Academic Probation. The student will be advised and will be required to meet with an academic adviser in person. Failure to fulfill the conditions of her/his Academic Probation may result in being administratively withdrawn from the program. The student will lose CPT privileges. Failure to meet with an adviser may result in being administratively withdrawn from the program.
  3. If a student fails to maintain SAP for a third consecutive mandatory term, the student may be administratively withdrawn from the program.

Time Between Grading & Evaluation

Discussion Questions (DQ) are graded within 4 days. Multiple-choice examinations are auto-graded by IAUonline instantly. Graduate written assessments for courses are more complex shall be graded and returned to students typically within 10 business days. This will allow faculty ample time to review, critique, and provide constructive feedback.

Withdrawal (W)

Students who withdraw in weeks 1 or 2 shall receive no mark on their transcript.  Students who withdraw in weeks 3, 4, 5, or 6 shall receive a “W”.  Students who withdraw in weeks 7 or 8 shall receive an “F”. Applicable refund policies shall apply. See SAP policy.

F-1 students may not withdraw from classes if it jeopardizes full-time enrollment, as required by law. However, F-1 students who must withdraw from courses due to academic or medical reasons or leave of absence (LOA) are required to meet with an academic advisor to properly reduce course load (RCL) and are subject to the terms aforementioned. See RCL and LOA policy herein.

1No mark. Must register for another class to maintain full-time enrollment.
2No mark. Must register for another class to maintain full-time enrollment.
3“W” on transcript, refund calculated.
4“W” on transcript, refund calculated.
5“W” on transcript, refund calculated
6“W” on transcript, no refund.
7“F” on transcript, no refund.
8“F” on transcript, no refund.

Maximum Withdrawals (W’s)

A maximum of 25% Withdrawals (W’s) may appear on the student’s transcripts. More than 25% W’s on transcripts will result in the student being administratively withdrawn from the enrolled program.

Degree ProgramMaximum Withdrawals (W's)
Associate Degree5 W's for 3-unit courses or a maximum of 25% of units taken with IAU
Bachelor Degree10 W's for 3-unit courses or a maximum of 25% of units taken with IAU
Master Degree3 W's for 3-unit courses or a maximum of 25% of units taken with IAU
Doctor Degree 5 W's for 3-unit courses or a maximum of 25% of units taken with IAU