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MUSC Bulletin | College of Nursing

Graduate Nursing Programs | Academic Policies

Matriculation Fee
All students must pay a matriculation fee in order to hold a space in the program.  Students must also return the signed acceptance form.  The student must notify the College of Nursing of acceptance of the offer within the 30 days or the offer may be rescinded.  Any student who does not pay the required fees is ineligible for matriculation. 

An applicant who has been admitted to any of the admission categories may delay matriculation up to one year following admission.  The request to delay admission must be made in writing to the Admission, Progression and Graduation Committee in care of the Office of Student Services.  After one year without enrollment, reapplication to the program is necessary.

Academic Progress

  1. A student must earn a grade of 3.0 in each program required course.  A student earning a grade of less than 3.0 or “WD” or “WP” or “WF” or “WR” must repeat the course. A nursing course can be repeated one time only. If a student earns a grade of less than 3.0 in a course, the student is placed on academic probation for one semester. The student must improve the cumulative GPA to 3.0 or greater upon completion of the next semester to remain in the program. The student must successfully complete the nursing course in which a grade below 3.0 was earned. Failure to do so will result in dismissal from the program and is ineligible for readmission into the College of Nursing. If a student earns less than 3.0 or “WF”, "WP", "WR" or "WD" in a second program required course, the student is dismissed from the program and is ineligible for readmission into the College of Nursing.  
  2. A student must receive a passing grade in the clinical portion of a combined clinical-didactic/seminar course in order to pass the course, regardless of the didactic/seminar grade.
  3. When a student’s clinical performance in a clinical nursing course indicates an inability to perform at a safe level of practice, the clinical instructor, in consultation with the course coordinator, may assign a course grade of “0.0” at any time during the semester.  In such case the student will fail the course regardless of the didactic grade.

Academic/Professional Warnings
An Academic/Professional Warning will be issued when a student’s performance puts them in jeopardy for failing the course or plan of study and can occur at any time during the semester. Students registered in the College of Nursing will receive written warnings of unsatisfactory or borderline performance in any didactic/seminar and/or clinical nursing course from the course faculty/coordinator. The “Academic/Professional Warning Form” indicates recommendations for improvement and students are encouraged to add or assist in the creation of the improvement plan. The form must be signed by the student and returned to the course faculty/coordinator. If a student chooses to not sign the academic warning, they are still responsible for the information and improvement plan. A copy is placed in a central file in the Office of Student Services. The Program Director and the administrator to the Associate Dean for Academics are notified of the Academic/Professional Warning. Course faculty/coordinator will follow-up with the student two weeks after the warning is issued and every two weeks thereafter until the improvement plan is completed using an Academic/Professional Follow-up Form to document the student’s ongoing or completion of work. If a student receives a second Professional Warning during the plan of study, the student will be referred to the Program Director to develop a performance improvement plan with expectations of what needs to be accomplished to be successful in the course.

Changing Population Foci for APRN's
A nurse practitioner student who wishes to change population foci after admission has been granted must petition the Director of the Graduate Program.  There is no guarantee that any student will be permitted to change population foci and approval is made on a space available basis.  Students desiring to change population foci must meet all prerequisites of the new population foci regardless of other courses completed and changes must be made before clinical courses begin. Students cannot change between APRN foci and the Nurse Executive program.

BSN/MSN/DNP Programs: The Office of Student Services will register students for their courses according to their plan of study on the preregistration dates determined by the Office of Enrollment Management.  It is the student’s responsibility to verify they are registered for the appropriate courses by viewing the schedule posted in WebAdvisor.  If there is a discrepancy, students should notify CON Student Services so changes can be made. 

Dropping a Course
After the drop period, a student may withdraw from a course if permission is obtained in writing from the course instructor, the student’s faculty advisor and/or the Program Director.  However, withdrawal from a course for any reason (academic, personal, health, etc.) regardless of the grade assigned (i.e., Withdraw/Passing, Withdraw/Failing, Withdrawal) constitutes one attempt in the course. A second attempt to take the same course will exhaust a student’s repeat option and lead to dismissal from the College of Nursing.

Incomplete Grade
An “Incomplete” (IN) is awarded when all requirements of a course have not been completed by the end of the semester due to circumstances beyond the student’s control.  When the IN is given in a course that is a pre- /or co-requisite to a course in which the student enrolls in the following semester, the student has until the end of the drop/add period of that following semester to complete the work and have the IN changed to a merit grade.  Students who fail to have the incomplete changed by drop/add will have to drop the prereq/coreq courses. If the student fails to remove the IN within these time limits, the IN will be converted to a merit grade of 0.0.  The Director of Student Services and Program Director must approve any extension of the time period.

Leave of Absence
A leave of absence (LOA) may be granted by the Program Director and Director of Student Services upon request by the student.  “University Withdrawal/Leave of Absence” forms are available online. After the specified time, the student will be readmitted automatically to the College.  If the student does not return before the leave of absence expires, the student will be withdrawn from the College.  Only one leave of absence, up to one year in length, will be granted during a program of study. 

The College of Nursing is not obligated to hold a student slot open for students who do not return at the end of the designated time frame leave of absence agreement (1 year). The student is accountable to maintain communication with the Program Director and the Office of Student Services regarding any changes in plans during the leave time period. 

Students returning from any leave of absence may be required to adjust the plan of study based upon new program requirement. Students returning from a leave of absence may not have immediate access to some courses, primarily because of student clinical placements and faculty-student ratios.   Students who are unable to return after a one-year leave of absence will be withdrawn from the program and would need to re-apply for admission..

Withdrawal from the Program
When withdrawing from the program, the student notifies the Program Director and reviews and signs the “University Withdrawal/Leave of Absence” form and a “Request for Course Add and/or Drop” forms completed by the Office of Student Services.  These completed forms are then forwarded to the Associate Dean for Academics for final approval and then placed in the student’s academic record.

Re-admission after Voluntary Withdrawal
Any student who withdraws from the program of study at the College of Nursing voluntarily and then would like to return should submit a new application for admission to the MUSC Office of Enrollment Management.  The new application should include a typewritten letter stating the circumstance that resulted in the student’s withdrawing from the program and reason(s) that readmission to the program is justified.

Dismissal from the Program
A student who is dismissed from the program is ineligible for readmission into the College of Nursing.  The Program Directors will make a recommendation to the Associate Dean for Academics of the College of Nursing that a student be dismissed from the program if the student has a GPA that indicates the student will not be able to meet the 3.0 requirement for graduation or has failed two courses OR does not complete requirements for the MSN or DNP degree within 1.5 years times the length of the program.  Additional circumstances which may result in dismissal from the program include failure to return after a Leave of Absence (LOA) expires, non-payment of fees, academic or professional misconduct, and loss of license to practice as an RN.

Student Complaint Procedure
For your reference, the MUSC Student Complaint Procedure is found in The Bulletin  under “Academic Policies and Information” . 

Graduation Requirements
In addition to meeting academic requirements for graduation, all students are required to submit a degree application and are expected to attend College of Nursing Convocation and MUSC Commencement ceremonies.  Permission to graduate in absentia must be requested in writing to the Dean of the College of Nursing.  All graduation requirements must be completed prior to participation in convocation and graduation.  Candidates for graduation are voted on by faculty and forwarded to the Board of Trustees for final approval.

  1. To qualify for the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree, candidates must meet all scholastic requirements and complete all specified courses in their prescribed program of study with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. 
  2. Courses must be completed in the prescribed sequence and within 1.5 years times the length of the program. 
  3. Students are also required to complete the Exit Survey in order to graduate. 
  4. It is the student’s responsibility to assure that all requirements for graduation are met. 

DNP students must also:

  1. Completion and Presentation of the Practice Improvement Project Proposal
  2. Final Poster Presentation
  3. Submission of Paper for Publication: This paper submission is required as evidence of completion of the Practice Improvement Project.
Last Published with Edits:July 17, 2015 3:51 PM
Last Comprehensive Review: July 2015


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