Academic Progress Rules (Milestones) for Undergraduate Programs

Applies To:

Month/Year Posted: 
May, 2012
Policy Number: 

The purpose of this policy is to allow departments to establish milestones for identifying at risk students who are not making sufficient progress in their undergraduate academic programs for the purposes of intervention. Students so identified will be required to meet with academic advisors to develop a plan that will lead to successful completion of the existing program. If it is determined that successful completion of the current academic program is not achievable, then the student will be dismissed from that program and guided to a more appropriate program.


Milestones must contain the following:

A. Clear indicators of whether a student is making academic progress. The milestones must be consistent with minimum graduation requirements and university policy. Academic progress milestones may include but are not limited to the following types of criteria:
1. Passing grades in specified required courses;
2. Semester GPAs above 2.0 (or higher for pre-majors if the impacted major has a
heightened GPA criteria);
3. GPA in the major and upper division GPA in the major above 2.0;
4. Numbers of repeats or withdrawals.
5. Completion of specific courses.
6. Timelines that identify how and by when the milestones must be met (end of one
academic year, one calendar year, by 30 units, by 60 units, by 90 units, etc.). Such timelines will include adjustments as necessary for students requiring developmental work and transfer students.

B. A detailed description of the intervention that will follow a missed milestone. The
intervention must include:
1. Mandatory academic advising to provide the student with guidance to meet
the missed milestone the following semester.
2. Clearly articulated timelines for dismissal from the academic program (e.g.,
when students have missed a milestone for two successive semesters), and
a. A description of the process by which students dismissed from the
academic program will be notified, advised, and guided into new academic programs.
b. The process by which resulting changes to student academic program
objectives will be communicated to the Registrar's Office in a timely


Academic progress milestones that potentially dismiss students from the major must first be approved through the regular curricular approval process (Integrated Curriculum Committee), then be placed on the Senate's consent calendar, and then be submitted to the Provost's Office. All milestones must be approved by the Provost's Office before they are implemented to assure that they adhere to university and state educational policies. Milestones must be published in the university catalog and included in all advising materials. Departments or colleges may revise milestones, subject to approval by the Provost's Office. The impact of a department's milestones will be reviewed as part of the Program Review, Evaluation and Planning (PREP) process.


Students who are dismissed from an academic program have the right to appeal that dismissal to the office of the Dean of the College, and if not satisfied they may file an appeal with the Provost or designee.


 Continuing students may be denied a request to declare an academic program if the student’s academic record already demonstrates a lack of success based on that program’s approved milestones. These students should be referred to the Advising Center.


 Students who have missed an academic progress milestone or who have GPAs below 2.5 may not add additional degree objectives, minors, or certificates unless approved by the advisor for their current primary academic program. Students who have missed a milestone or have GPAs below 2.5 may change primary academic programs to facilitate timely progress toward their degree.


Academic Policies Committee: April 2012

University Senate: Passed, 05/01/12 (Resolution #39-11/12-APC)

President Richmond: Approved 05/03/12

 Note:  When approved, this Policy #12-01 was retitled, “Academic Progress Rules (Milestones) for Undergraduate Programs.” Earlier drafts of this policy were titled, “Academic Progress Milestones for Undergraduate Programs” (39-11/12-APC).