Academic Probation FAQ

Q: I received a letter that says I am on probation.  What does that mean?

A: Being placed on probation means that your current cumulative grade point average is below the minimum required GPA. If you do not raise your cumulative GPA to the required minimum of 2.0, it will not be possible to graduate. Northwest University wants to help make sure you will be able to graduate. When your grades are too low, you are placed on probation so you will know that your grades are too low so you can seek the help you need to get your academic career turned in the right direction.


Q: The letter I received says I have to enroll in UNIV 1001: Academic Success.  Why?

A: UNIV 1001: Academic Success is a class that is designed to help you understand why you may have had so much trouble succeeding in class and help you develop some of the tools and skills necessary to be successful. Here are some of the things you will learn: how to take notes more effectively; how to study more effectively; how to better manage your time so you have enough time to study; what resources are available to help you; and how to set realistic goals and expectations for your academic success.


Q: What do I have to do to get off probation?

A: You must raise your cumulative grade point average to the required level, depending on the number of hours you have earned. If you have earned between 1-29 credit hours, your grade point average must be at least 1.7. If you have earned between 30-59 credit hours, you grade point average must be at least 1.9. If you have earned 60 or more credit hours, your grade point average must be at least 2.0. Remember, in order to graduate, both your cumulative grade point average and your grade point average in your major must be at least 2.0.


Q: Is there anyone who can help me while I’m on probation?

A: Yes! There are a number of resources on campus to help you. For example:

  • Academic Success & Advising Center
    425/889.5227
  • Counseling Center
    425/889.5282


Q: Can I take classes somewhere else and transfer them back while I’m on probation?

A: You may be able to take classes at another school while you are on probation. You will need to check with your individual school. Some schools require that you be in a good academic standing at your home institution before you can take classes there.


Q: Will taking classes somewhere help me get off probation?

A: No. When you take classes at another institution and transfer the credits back, only the credits transfer. Grades do not transfer. So the grades you might earn at another institution will not transfer back to Northwest and will not be calculated in your grade point average here.


Q: The letter I received says I will be limited to 13 credits.  Why?

A: We limit students on academic probation to 13 credits or less so that they can concentrate on their classes. In some cases, 14 credits may be approved depending on the nature of the classes.


Q: What happens if I don’t get off probation?

A: You will stay on probation for no more than two consecutive semesters, still limited to 13 credits or less. After two semesters if there is no sign of significant improvement, you will be academically suspended. This includes your first semester if you were admitted on probation.


Q: The letter I received said that if I don’t get off probation I am at risk of being dismissed.  What does that mean?

A: It means that if you do not raise your GPA to the appropriate level, you will not be allowed to take classes the next semester. If you are registered for classes you will be administratively withdrawn no later than the last day of Add/Drop week. If you choose to appeal the suspension you must have your appeal reviewed and approved in order to stay in classes. In order to return to Northwest in future semesters you must reapply and are subject to the Academic standards for Admission.