Faculty Assembly to vote on policy proposal

Junior Associated Students of Linfield College President-elect Rachel Coffey announced at the April 18 Senate meeting that a proposal for the revision of Linfield College’s academic probation policies was presented to students, faculty members and administrators during the April Faculty Assembly meeting.

The new probation/suspension policy proposes that students who receive a semester Grade Point Average (GPA) below a 2.0 will receive a warning. If the GPA remains below the 2.0 mark for two consecutive semesters, students will be placed on academic probation; if it happens a third consecutive semester, students will be suspended for an “x” amount of time. This means that they must transfer to another school, take online classes or work out a class schedule through the school to try to raise his or her grades, Brad Thompson, associate professor of mass communication and department chair, said.

Thompson is the head of the Student Policy Committee, which created and proposed the policy change.

The potential policy change will be voted on during the Faculty Assembly meeting May 9 in Riley Student Center 201. If approved, it will go into effect for the 2011-12 academic year.

However, Coffey and Thompson noted that this change would only affect a small number of students.

In comparison, the current probation/suspension policy states that students receiving a cumulative GPA below a 2.0 will be put on probation and given one semester to try to raise their GPA above a 2.0. If these low GPAs continue into the next semester, they will be suspended for an “x” amount of time, Coffey said.

“Sometimes freshmen have a good year, but the following semester their GPAs drop below a 2.0,” Coffey said. “This [policy] is just a way to make sure that students are on track.”

He said that students who are not meeting the minimum GPA requirement because of drug and alcohol use or because of personal or family problems would ultimately benefit from a suspension because those students need time to focus on themselves.

Although the proposed policy change is fairly similar to the current one, it has a potential flaw since cumulative GPAs might remain above a 2.0 even if semester GPAs are not, Coffey said.

However, Thompson said that it is unlikely that a student’s cumulative GPA would remain above a 2.0 if the GPA minimum requirement was not met during multiple, consecutive semesters.

Regardless, Coffey acknowledged the benefit of the proposed policy.

“Students need to be redirected,” she said. “It’s kind of an extra support and a check in process for students.”

Jessica Prokop/News editor
Jessica Prokop can be reached at linfieldreviewnews@gmail.com.

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