Academic Standing

For the Undergraduate Program

After being admitted with a 3.0 or higher grade-point average (GPA), you must maintain a cumulative GPA of C (2.0) to be considered in good academic standing. If your GPA falls below 2.0, you are in poor academic standing. If you remain in poor academic standing for two terms, you'll be required to withdraw from the degree program.

Your transcript will reflect this new status: RW (required to withdraw).

You must complete at least two-thirds of your attempted Harvard credits to make satisfactory progress toward your degree. If you do not complete two-thirds of your attempted credits, you continually earn E or WD grades, or you enroll in courses that do not fulfill degree requirements, you are not making satisfactory progress.

Returning from RW Status for the Undergraduate Program

If you decide to continue your undergraduate studies at Harvard Extension School after being required to withdraw, you are granted three years to raise your cumulative GPA to the minimum 2.0. If you are successful, you petition the Office of Undergraduate Advising and Program Administration for reinstatement. However, after three years, you need to reapply to the undergraduate program and meet all current admission requirements, including the admission GPA of 3.0.

Grade-Point Average Calculation for Undergraduate Degree Program

All Harvard grades are included in grade-point average calculation. The first five grades of withdrawal (WD) are not included in the calculation of the cumulative grade-point average, but the sixth and subsequent non-completion grades, including retired grades of INC and ABS, count as zeroes.

For the calculation of the academic term and academic year grade-point averages, all non-completion grades count as zeroes. Interim grades of extension of time (EXT) or work in progress (INP) are not counted in the calculation.

Grades of pass (PA) are not included in the GPA calculation, but grades of fail (FL) count as zeroes in the calculation.

See Grades for the values used in the calculation.

If you complete a minimum of eight credits a term (fall and spring only) and earn a GPA of 3.5 for the year, you attain Dean’s List standing. Remember all WD grades count as zero in the calculation of the year GPA.

For Graduate Programs

After being admitted with a 3.0 or higher GPA, you must maintain a cumulative GPA of B (3.0) to be considered in good academic standing.

If your GPA falls below 3.0, you are in poor academic standing and you cannot (depending on your specific degree requirements) submit a master’s thesis proposal, participate in a capstone course or project, change concentrations, transfer to another program, or graduate.

If you are in poor academic standing for two terms, you are required to withdraw from the program.

Your transcript will reflect this new status: RW (required to withdraw).

In addition, you must make satisfactory academic progress, successfully completing at least two-thirds of the classes for which you enroll.

Grade-Point Average Calculation for Graduate Programs

Your GPA is calculated using all grades in courses that could count toward the program. Any course in which you receive a grade lower than B− is not accepted for credit toward the degree but is counted in your overall average. You need to earn B or higher grades in the admission courses.

The first two grades of withdrawal (WD) are not included in the GPA. The third and subsequent noncompletion grades, including retired grades of INC and ABS, count as zeroes (the equivalent of a failing grade) in the GPA.

Interim grades of extension of time (EXT) or work in progress (INP) are not counted in the calculation. See Grades for the values used in GPA calculation.

Grades of pass (PA) are not included in the calculation, but grades of fail (FL) count as zeroes in the calculation.

Financial Aid: Undergraduate or Graduate

If you are in poor academic standing or not making satisfactory progress, you are ineligible for financial aid. If you are receiving financial aid, be sure to speak with a financial aid advisor before withdrawing from any course. Even one WD grade can affect your eligibility to receive aid.