Aug 16, 2018  
2016-2017 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2016-2017 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Undergraduate Academics

Michael L. Galyean, Ph.D.,
Interim Provost and Senior Vice President

Office of the Provost | 104 Administration Building
Box 42019 | Lubbock, TX 79409-2019 | T 806.742.2184
F 806.742.1331 |


Students are responsible for their academic progress. Students seeking assistance with academic progress or experiencing academic difficulty should consult their academic dean and advisor. For information about Academic Advising and Support, click here .

Each undergraduate student accepted for admission will enroll in one of the university’s degree-granting colleges or areas: College of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources, College of Architecture, College of Arts & Sciences, Jerry S. Rawls College of Business, College of Education, Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering, Honors College, College of Human Sciences, College of Media & Communication, J.T. & Margeret Talkington College of Visual & Performing Arts, and Office of the Provost. A student’s major subject is the primary area of specialized study (e.g., English) the student is pursuing within a degree program (e.g., Bachelor of Arts). A student interested in obtaining a double major or dual degree should contact his or her academic dean and advisor for specific requirements.

All baccalaureate degrees conferred by Texas Tech University are based on the satisfactory completion of specific authorized degree programs comprising a minimum of 120 semester hours. Requirements for undergraduate degrees are established at three different levels:

  1. The university as a whole (Uniform Undergraduate Degree Requirements).
  2. The college or area through which the degree is conferred (General Degree Requirements).
  3. The particular degree program in which the student is working (Requirements for the Major).

Students should familiarize themselves with all three sets of requirements that must be fulfilled before the degree is granted. Students should consult their academic dean and advisor whenever any question arises concerning academic status or progress. Matters specifically requiring the dean’s approval include the following:

  • Concurrent enrollment in Texas Tech University and another institution
  • Pass/fail option
  • Credit by examination
  • Graduation requirements, including participating in a commencement ceremony prior to completing degree requirements,  and candidacy for a degree
  • Applicability of transfer credits to degree programs
  • Taking the last 30 hours of coursework from Texas Tech University.

Uniform Undergraduate Degree Requirements

The Uniform Undergraduate Degree Requirements apply to all Texas Tech undergraduates regardless of their major or college. The requirements have six components:

General Requirements

Residence Credit. The minimum actual residence required of each student is two consecutive semesters or the equivalent, and the minimum amount of residence work required is one-fourth of the total hours applicable toward the degree sought. In addition, the last 30 hours of coursework must be from Texas Tech.

The term “residence” as a degree requirement should not be confused with “residence” in the state of Texas for tuition purposes. “Residence credit” used here means credit for work done while enrolled in and attending classes taught under a Texas Tech course number, including distance education courses and those taught at locations other than the Lubbock campus.

Graduation Under a Particular Catalog. All degree requirements must be met according to a single Texas Tech University catalog. Normally this will be the catalog in effect when the student first enrolls in the university. For the student who changes a degree program after having enrolled at Texas Tech University, the applicable degree requirements are those in effect at the time the student is officially admitted to the college in which the degree program is housed. Only with the specific approval of the academic dean may a different catalog be selected. In no case may a student complete the requirements set forth in a catalog more than seven years old or in a catalog in effect prior to the student’s first enrollment in higher education. When necessary, a catalog issued later than the student’s first registration may be selected by the academic dean in conference with the student.

The catalog is published each summer, and its provisions apply during the following academic year, beginning with the fall semester and extending through the next summer semester. A student who registers for the first time in the university during a summer session is subject to the degree requirements set forth in the catalog effective for the fall semester immediately following the initial enrollment.

Core Curriculum Option. The university introduced a new core curriculum in fall 2014. Students who entered the university under a catalog prior to fall 2014 will complete the core curriculum specified in their catalog unless they request to change to a 2014-15 or later catalog. In this case, core curriculum requirements completed under the old core will be retained, and remaining core requirements will be completed under the new core requirements. Students should consult with their advisor before they elect to change to a 2014-15 or later university catalog.

Filing a Degree Plan. In 2011 the Texas Legislature passed HB 3025 requiring all students enrolled in a bachelor’s degree program at a state university to file a degree plan before the end of the second regular semester after the student has earned a cumulative total of 45 or more semester credit hours. The 45 hours includes all transfer courses, international baccalaureate courses, dual credit courses, and any other course for which Texas Tech University has awarded college course credit. In the event of a change in major, students should submit a new degree plan as soon as the program change is complete.

A baccalaureate student must verify at each registration that a degree plan has been filed and the courses for which the student is registering are consistent with that degree plan. This verification will be done electronically through Raiderlink and Banner. Students who have not filed a degree plan within the allotted time period may not obtain an official transcript from the university registrar until the plan has been filed.

Filing “Intent to Graduate.” Students must file an “Intent to Graduate” or “Application for Degree” form with their college at least one calendar year before they plan to graduate. Students using federal veteran’s benefits must meet a federal requirement to file a degree plan by the time they have accumulated 64 semester hours. Students in compliance with HB 3025 (see “Filing a Degree Plan” above) also will have complied with this requirement.

Commencement Exercises. Diplomas are awarded at the end of each semester and the summer terms. Commencement exercises are held at the end of each long semester (May and December) and at the end of the second summer term (August).

Second Bachelor’s Degree. No second bachelor’s degree is conferred until the candidate has completed at least 24 semester hours—exclusive of credit by examination—in addition to the courses counted toward the first bachelor’s degree. A second bachelor’s degree sought by a student who did not complete the core curriculum at a public Texas institution of higher education may include coursework necessary to complete the Texas Tech University required core curriculum.

Science Laboratory Requirement

Students graduating from Texas Tech University are required to complete two semester credit hours of science laboratory courses. Normally this will be done by taking two 4-credit science courses or combinations of lecture and lab. Examples are BIOL 1401 /BIOL 1402  or CHEM 1305 /CHEM 1105  and CHEM 1306 /CHEM 1106 . Students may not take a lab that is not matched to a corresponding lecture course.

Transfer students who present 3-hour science courses may complete the science laboratory requirement in either of the following in ways:

  • They may take a laboratory course that matches a 3-hour course accepted in transfer as satisfying a portion of the life and physical sciences requirement (for example, GEOL 1101  if the student transferred a course that was accepted as equivalent to GEOL 1303 ).
  • They may enroll in BIOL 2202 . This is a 2-hour self-paced online course designed specifically for transfer students who need to complete the science laboratory requirement. BIOL 2202  carries a biology prefix, but it is designed to be taken by any student who has completed one or two 3-hour science courses in any science discipline. The BIOL 2202  modules stress providing students with a framework for evaluating and critiquing scientific research findings and will help students understand the role of scientific research in improving human health, contributing to economic growth, answering basic questions about the world, and working toward solving a multitude of problems faced by modem society. BIOL 2202  is not available to students who complete their life and physical sciences requirement at Texas Tech University.

Foreign Language Requirement

Students graduating from Texas Tech University should be able to express, negotiate, and interpret meaning in a second language.

Any entering student who has not completed two years of a single foreign language in high school or has not transferred at least two semesters of a single foreign language from another college must complete at least two semesters (or its equivalent) of a single foreign language at the first-year college level as a graduation requirement. This can be accomplished, for example, by successful completion of course number 1502 or 1507 in FREN, GERM, SPAN, etc. Individual colleges may have additional foreign language proficiency requirements. Additional requirements may be necessary for select majors.

Almost all programs in the College of Arts and Sciences and some programs in the College of Visual and Performing Arts require sophomore-level proficiency. Admission to sophomore-level foreign language courses requires either a minimum score on a placement exam or successful completion of prerequisites within the respective language.

International students who wish to have the foreign language requirement waived should review the Guidelines for High School Foreign Language Requirements for International Students .

Students who take freshman level courses to satisfy the foreign language graduation requirement may not use those courses to satisfy any other specified university degree requirements. Hours in the required freshman level language courses may count toward free elective hours included in any baccalaureate degree.

The foreign language requirement may be met through credit by examination, described elsewhere in this catalog. Students who petition to complete the foreign language requirement via study abroad through a non-Texas Tech affiliated program must agree to have foreign language credit applied to their degrees based on scores on a language placement test administered by the Department of Classical and Modern Languages and Literatures after their return from the study abroad. Approval to do this must be granted in advance by the student’s associate dean. For more information, consult the Department of Classical and Modern Languages and Literatures.

Writing Intensive Requirement

Each degree program will include a minimum of six hours of courses that are designated as writing intensive. The fundamental objective of a writing intensive course is for students to write often and receive critical review from the course instructor. Students should be required to rewrite, based on the instructor’s critique. The writing intensive course emphasizes the process as well as the products of writing. Faculty use writing to reinforce student learning. Students’ writing should formulate ideas, raise questions, and express considered opinions. Students’ written work should analyze, integrate, and synthesize as well as communicate.

Students pursuing a double major or dual-degree must complete six hours of writing intensive coursework in each area of study. Students pursuing an interdisciplinary degree must complete six hours of writing intensive coursework within one or more of the selected areas of study.

Academic Regulations

Classification of Students. An undergraduate student is classified according to the following: freshman, 0 to 29 hours completed; sophomore, 30 to 59; junior, 60 to 89; senior, 90 to completion of degree requirements. The junior and senior ranks are often referred to as “upper division” and “advanced.” A student who is enrolled for 12 or more credit hours per semester is considered a full-time student; one enrolled for fewer than 12 hours is considered a part-time student. A freshman may have remedial courses (excluding TSI courses) numbered 0301 or 0302 counted as part of a full course load although these courses do not count toward a degree or toward classification.

All baccalaureate degrees conferred by Texas Tech University are based on the satisfactory completion of specific authorized degree programs comprising a minimum of 120 semester hours. Students are required to take a minimum of 40 credit hours of 3000- and 4000-level courses prior to graduation. They are considered to be making satisfactory progress toward a degree objective when they complete at least 30 credit hours in each calendar/academic year, achieve a GPA of 2.00 or higher in each semester, and maintain an overall GPA of 2.00 or higher.

All references to a grade point average (GPA) reflect policy effective January 1, 2009, stipulating that the university will calculate only current and cumulative GPAs. Both calculations will include replaced grades. Unless otherwise stated, all GPA references refer to a cumulative GPA that includes replaced grades.

Semester Credit Hour and Contact Hour Equivalents. For most purposes a traditionally offered face-to-face course will have a minimum of 15 contact hours for each semester credit hour. Thus, a 1 credit hour course should meet for at least 15 hours over a long semester and a 3 credit hour course should meet for 45 hours over the semester. Courses taught during a summer session are expected to have the same number of contact hours as if they were taught during a long semester. It is permitted to offer a course in a shortened schedule, online, or in other non-traditional formats that do not meet the contact hour requirement if the course has been reviewed by a college faculty committee and the Office of the Provost and approved as having the same learning outcomes as a comparable traditionally delivered course.

Semester Hours and Course Loads. The semester hour is the unit of measure for credit purposes. The student is expected to spend a minimum of two hours in preparation for each hour of lecture or recitation.

In-residence students and any students in their semester of graduation must be enrolled in a minimum of one credit-bearing semester hour. Registration in remedial and other zero-credit hour coursework must be accompanied by one credit-bearing course. Should a student drop to zero credit hours, the student will be withdrawn from the institution.

The maximum number of semester hours a student may take without specific permission of the academic dean is as follows: 19 hours per long semester, 16 hours per long semester for students on academic probation or continued academic probation, and 8 hours per summer term. In determining a greater load, the dean considers the quality of scholastic work performed by the student, the types of courses involved, the student’s health, and extracurricular interests and activities.

Quarter Hour Conversion. Quarter credit hours are converted to semester credit hours by multiplying the number of quarter hours by two-thirds (or .67). Since a fraction of a credit hour cannot be awarded, the remaining fraction of semester hour credit is rounded to the nearest whole number from the tenth’s position of the decimal.

For example, 5 quarter hours are equivalent to 3.4 semester hours, which in turn would be rounded to 3 semester hours of credit: 5 quarter hours x .67 = 3.4 semester hours = 3 semester hours. Applicability of transfer credit toward degree requirements at Texas Tech University will be at the discretion of the student’s academic dean.

Dropping a Course. Dropping a course delays graduation. Students should plan their schedules and make a serious commitment to academic success. When it becomes necessary to drop a course, the procedure varies according to the rules below. All course drops, whether during the early semester student-initiated add-drop period, later in the semester as one of the restricted drops, or because of withdrawal from the university, are the responsibility of the student. If students stop attending a class but fail to drop the course, they will receive a grade of F and the grade will become a permanent part of their academic record.

All students who attend a Texas state institution of higher education are restricted to a maximum of six course drops during their undergraduate academic career. This includes all courses that were dropped at any Texas state institution of higher education the student has attended. For example, if a student attended a public community college and dropped two courses prior to enrolling at Texas Tech University, that student has four course drops remaining prior to graduation.

Students may use their limited drops (DG’s) up to the 45th class day of the long semester and the 15th class day of the short summer terms. Students must initiate a drop by following the procedures listed at Further information can be obtained at 806.742.3661.

Exclusions from the rule governing course drops are as follows:

Drop or Withdrawal Designations

W Complete withdrawal from the university. A grade of W will be recorded for each class but will not be counted as one of the permitted drops.
DG Dropping a course by last drop date. Applies only to students who entered Texas Tech during fall 2004 or thereafter and are limited to six dropped classes.
  • A two-week period of student-initiated drop/add at the beginning of each semester allows students to drop a course without the drop counting against their limit of six drops. The student-initiated drop/add period is noted in the academic calendar that appears in each university catalog and online at:
  • Students who find it necessary to withdraw completely from the university before withdrawal deadline near the end of the semester will not have the dropped courses counted against their six course limit.

Aside from the exceptions noted above, students will not be permitted to drop more than six courses during their undergraduate academic career unless they can show good cause, including but not limited to demonstrating one or more of the following:

  • Severe illness or other debilitating condition that affects the student’s ability to satisfactorily complete the course.
  • Student responsibility for the care of a sick, injured or needy person if the provision of that care affects the student’s ability to satisfactorily complete the course.
  • Death of a person who is considered to be a member of the student’s family or who is otherwise considered to have a sufficiently close relationship to the student that the person’s death is considered to be a showing of good cause.
  • Active duty service as a member of the Texas National Guard or the armed forces of the United States of either the student or a person who is considered to be a member of the student’s family or who is otherwise considered to have a sufficiently close relationship to the student that the person’s active military service is considered to be evidence of good cause.
  • Change of the student’s work schedule that is beyond the control of the student and affects the student’s ability to satisfactorily complete the course.

Students who have dropped the maximum number of courses and believe they have good cause to drop an additional course should petition their academic dean.

Change of College. Students who wish to transfer from one college of the university to another should contact the academic dean of the college to which they plan to transfer to ensure that they can meet all enrollment requirements. Students should then complete an academic transfer form in the receiving dean’s office. The last day to change colleges in a given semester or term is the first day of open registration for the next semester. Students who return to the university following academic suspension may change their college if they follow the procedures specified in the section of this catalog on Subsequent Suspensions and Conditions of Return.

Change of Address. Students are responsible for maintaining a correct address on file with the university. Changes may be made online at or by calling 806.742.3661 for assistance. Students required by the housing residence rules to live on campus may not move off campus during the semester without approval from University Student Housing.

Administrative Holds. Failure to meet certain university obligations may result in an administrative hold being placed on a student’s access to such university procedures as registration, release of transcripts and/or diplomas, and course add/drops.

Administrative holds may be placed on a student’s record until resolution of problems, including, but not limited to, an outstanding debt to the university, disciplinary action, academic suspension, incomplete admission forms or substandard test scores. It is the student’s responsibility to get the hold released, which can be accomplished by meeting the requirements of the department placing the hold. Status of holds on student records may be obtained online at An official diploma will not be issued unless all financial obligations to the University have been satisfied.

Class Attendance. Responsibility for class attendance rests with the student. Instructors set an attendance policy for each course they teach. The university expects regular and punctual attendance at all scheduled classes, and the university reserves the right to deal at any time with individual cases of nonattendance. Instructors should state clearly in their syllabi their policy regarding student absences and how absences affect grades.

In the event of excessive absences, the student must visit the instructor to discuss his or her status in the course. Excessive absences constitute cause for dropping a student from class. If the drop occurs before the 45th class day of the long semester or the 15th class day of the summer term, a designation of DG will be assigned (see section on “Dropping a Course”). If the drop occurs after that time period, the student will receive a grade of F. This drop can be initiated by the instructor but must be formally executed by the academic dean. In extreme cases the academic dean may suspend the student from the university.

Department chairpersons, directors, or others responsible for a student representing the university on officially approved trips should notify the student’s instructors of the departure and return schedules in advance of the trip. The instructor so notified must not penalize the student, although the student is responsible for material missed. Students absent because of university business must be given the same privileges as other students (e.g., if other students are given the choice of dropping one of four tests, then students with excused absences must be given the same privilege).

Reporting Illness. In case of an illness that will require absence from class for more than one week, the student should notify his or her academic dean. The dean’s office will inform the student’s instructors through the departmental office. In case of class absences because of a brief illness, the student should inform the instructor directly. Other information related to illness can be found in the Student Handbook.

Absence Due to Religious Observance. A student shall be excused from attending classes or other required activities, including examinations, for the observance of a religious holy day, including travel for that purpose. A student who intends to observe a religious holy day should make that intention known in writing to the instructor prior to the absence. A student who is absent from classes for the observance of a religious holy day shall be allowed to take an examination or complete an assignment scheduled for that day within a reasonable time after the absence.

Civility in the Classroom. Students are expected to assist in maintaining a classroom environment that is conducive to learning. To ensure that all students have the opportunity to gain from time spent in class, faculty members are encouraged to include a statement in their course syllabi relating to behavioral expectations in the classroom.

Grading Practices. A grade is assigned for all courses in which a student is regularly enrolled during any semester or summer term. Only through regular enrollment can a grade be earned. A passing grade may be earned only if the student is enrolled for the duration of the course, and a grade, once given, may not be changed without approval of the student’s academic dean.

The instructor of record determines all grades for a course. The method of determining a grade will be included in the course syllabus presented to students at the beginning of the semester.

The grades used, including plus and minus, with their interpretations, are: A, excellent; B, good; C, average; D, inferior (passing, but not necessarily satisfying degree requirements); F, failure; P, passing; PR, in progress; I, incomplete; and W, withdrawal (not to be confused with a drop). The letter R designates a course repeated to remove an I. The grade of PR is given only when the work in a course extends beyond the semester or term; it implies satisfactory performance and is used primarily in individual study courses. The grades of CR (credit) and NC (no credit) are given in certain instances.

The grade of I is given only when a student’s work is satisfactory in quality but, due to reasons beyond his or her control, has not been completed. It is not given instead of an F. Prior to assigning the I, the instructor must fill out a form available online with OP 34.12 stating the reasons beyond the student’s control for granting the I and the conditions to be met to remove the I. All signatures are required on the form. The I may be replaced by an R if the course is repeated, and the appropriate grade will be given for the second registration. The grade of I will revert to an F after one calendar year if the conditions for completing the I as stated on the form have not been met.

The grade of DG is regulated by the university’s drop policy (see section on “Dropping a Course”).

Non-semester-based courses that are in progress but not completed by the end of a term will be noted on the transcript by PR. Official grades for such courses will appear on the transcript for the term when completed.

Grade Appeals. A student who wishes to appeal a final course grade should first consult with the course instructor, then with the department chairperson, and then, if the matter remains unresolved, with the dean of the college in which the course is offered. A grade appeal must be filed in the office of the dean of the college in which the course is offered within 45 days of the start of the next long semester after the term in which the disputed grade was received. Copies of the grade appeals policy can be obtained from any academic dean’s office or from the Center for Campus Life.

Mid-Semester and Semester Grade Reports. At the close of each semester and each summer term, final course grades are available on (MyTech) or as a hard copy. Students who want a hard copy should update their grading address on Instructors of Record are to post mid-semester grade reports only for freshmen and student athletes. After mid-term grades are posted between the 34th and 40th class days, students can view the grades on Raiderlink (MyTech).

Grade Points. The grades of A, B, C, and D carry with them grade points of 4, 3, 2, and 1, respectively, for each semester hour of credit value of the course in which the grade is received. All other grades have no assigned grade points.

Grade Point Averages. Only courses taken and grades received at Texas Tech University are used in calculating grade point averages. The current grade point average is determined by dividing the total number of grade points acquired during that semester by the total number of semester hours of all courses in which the student was registered in that semester, exclusive of courses in which grades such as DG, I, P, CR, and PR are received. In the same manner, the grade point average is obtained by dividing the total number of grade points earned in all courses for which the student has registered at this university, including hours for an F, by the total number of semester hours.

Undergraduate-level courses, including those taken toward a second bachelor’s degree or for graduate leveling purposes, are calculated into the undergraduate Texas Tech University GPA. The cumulative Texas Tech University GPA is adjusted to reflect grade replacements. A pure institutional GPA reflects all hours and courses taken at Texas Tech University and is the GPA used to calculate GPA for Texas Tech University honors designations.

Grade Replacement Policy. The Office of the Registrar will initiate the grade replacement process at the end of each term after a Texas Tech course had been retaken at Texas Tech University and prior to graduation. Students wanting to replace a grade received before fall 1983 should contact their academic dean’s office.

Grade replacement is for the purpose of adjusting the cumulative grade point average. A notation will indicate the original course that is being replaced. The original grade will remain. A pure GPA without grade replacements will be used for honors designations.

The most recent A, B, or C will replace all previous grades of D or F in that course. Only grades of D and F are eligible for grade replacement. Courses taken pass/fail for grade replacement can only replace a grade of F. They cannot replace a grade for which grade points were awarded (i.e., a D grade) in a course not taken pass/fail. Students may repeat a course for credit only one time at the normal tuition rate. Additional tuition may be charged for a course taken more than two times.

Students enrolled in a second bachelor’s degree program may repeat a course but cannot replace a grade awarded during the first degree program. They may, however, replace a grade in a course taken during the second degree program while that program is in progress.

Effective January 1, 2009, only current and cumulative GPAs will be calculated. The current and cumulative GPA will include grade replacements. A notation will indicate the original course(s) that is being replaced. The original grade and original academic standing status will remain on the term in which the initial grade was earned.

Pass/Fail Option. Undergraduate students may take up to 13 elective semester hours toward satisfying degree requirements in which they will be graded on a pass/fail basis. Courses taken as pass/fail may not apply to core curriculum, writing intensive or multicultural requirements. Students wishing to take a course as pass/fail in their major, minor, or area of concentration must obtain approval from the academic dean’s office of the college specific to the program in question. For example, students wishing to take as pass/fail a course that is part of their minor must obtain permission from the academic dean’s office of the college housing the minor. A student who has chosen to take a course pass/fail may not subsequently change to a letter grade option. A grade of F received on a course taken pass/fail will be computed into the grade point average.

Credit by Examination for Matriculated Students. Matriculated students may be given the opportunity to receive credit by examination for courses in which proficiency may be determined by examination. For more detailed information, see “Undergraduate Credit by Exam ” in the Undergraduate Admissions section of this catalog.

Final Examination Policies. Class-related activities, with the exception of office hours, are prohibited on designated individual study days and during the final examination period (OP 34.10). These dates are set aside for students to prepare for and take scheduled final examinations. During this period, review sessions are not to be scheduled, quizzes are not to be given, and no other class-related activities can be scheduled.

No substantial examinations other than bona fide make-up examinations may be given during the last class week or during the individual study day. Courses in which lab examinations and design studio reviews are normally scheduled the week prior to finals are excluded from this policy. No extracurricular activities of any kind may be scheduled within the individual study day and the final examination period without written permission of the Office of the Provost.

An instructor with a compelling reason to change the time of an examination must obtain written approval from the department chair and/or dean of the college or school in which the course is taught before requesting room accommodations from Section Inventory within the Office of the Registrar.  A change in the room assignment for a final examination may be made only with the approval of the Office of the Registrar. A change in the room assignment for a final examination may be made only with the approval of Office of the Registrar.

There is no university policy that provides relief to students who have three examinations scheduled the same day. In that situation, students may seek the assistance of the course instructors, department chair, and/or dean of the college. Contact Section Inventory within the Office of the Registrar at 806.742.1484 with questions, comments, or concerns regarding the final exam schedule.

Graduation Requirements. Graduation requirements include a minimum cumulative Texas Tech University GPA of 2.0 for all courses, including repeated courses, attempted in the degree program in which students seek graduation. To obtain a degree granted by the university, at least 25 percent of the total semester credit hours must be earned through instruction offered by Texas Tech University. Students in their semester of graduation must be enrolled in a minimum of one credit-bearing semester hour.

Graduation Rates. Federal regulations require that the university disclose graduation rates for men and women who are full-time, degree-seeking undergraduate students. Disclosure of graduation rates for various student populations, including athletes, is also required. These are the same rates as those supplied by Texas Tech to the National Collegiate Athletic Association. Detailed graduation rates are available from the Office of Communications and Marketing.

Withdrawal from the University. Students who find it necessary to withdraw from the university before the end of a semester or summer term must submit a withdrawal request to the Office of the Registrar in 103 West Hall or online at Students under the age of 18 should first consult their parents and secure from them a written statement that they have permission to withdraw. Although a W will be recorded for all classes that semester or term, these W’s will not be counted as one of the six permitted drops.

International students must receive clearance from the director of International Programs as a part of the withdrawal procedure.

Core Curriculum Requirement


Multicultural Requirement


Academic Integrity

It is the aim of the faculty of Texas Tech University to foster a spirit of complete honesty and a high standard of integrity. The attempt of students to present as their own any work they have not honestly performed is regarded by the faculty and administration as a serious offense and renders the offenders liable to serious consequences, possibly suspension.

Academic integrity is taking responsibility for one’s own class and/or coursework, being individually accountable, and demonstrating intellectual honesty and ethical behavior. Academic integrity is a personal choice to abide by the standards of intellectual honesty and responsibility. Because education is a shared effort to achieve learning through the exchange of ideas, students, faculty, and staff have the collective responsibility to build mutual trust and respect. Ethical behavior and independent thought are essential for the highest level of academic achievement, which then must be measured. Academic achievement includes scholarship, teaching, and learning, all of which are shared endeavors. Grades are used to quantify the successful accumulation of knowledge through learning. Adhering to the standards of academic integrity ensures grades are earned honestly. Academic integrity is the foundation upon which students, faculty, and staff build their educational and professional careers. [Texas Tech University Quality Enhancement Plan, Academic Integrity Task Force, 2010]

Students must understand the principles of academic integrity and abide by them in all classes and/or coursework. Academic integrity violations are outlined in the Code of Student Conduct, Part X, B3 of the Student Handbook. If there are questions of interpretation of academic integrity policies or about what might constitute an academic integrity violation, students are responsible for seeking guidance from the faculty member teaching the course in question.

“Academic dishonesty” includes, but is not limited to, cheating, plagiarism, collusion, falsifying academic records, misrepresenting facts and any act designed to give unfair academic advantage to the student (such as, but not limited to, submission of essentially the same written assignment for two courses without the prior permission of the instructor(s) or the attempt to commit such an act).

  1. “Cheating” includes, but is not limited to, the following:
    1. Copying from another student’s test paper or devices.
    2. Using unauthorized materials or devices during a test or other assignment.
    3. Failing to comply with instructions given by the person administering the test.
    4. Possession during a test of materials that are not authorized by the person administering the test, such as class notes, textbooks, or other unauthorized aids.
    5. Possessing, using, buying, stealing, transporting, selling or soliciting in whole or in part items, including but not limited to, the contents of an unadministered test, test key, homework solution, or computer program/software. Possession of current or previous test materials at any time without the instructor’s permission.
    6. Collaborating with, seeking aid, or receiving assistance from another student or individual during a test or in conjunction with other assignments without authority.
    7. Discussing the contents of an examination with another student who has taken or will take the examination without authority.
    8. Substituting for another person or permitting another person to substitute for oneself in order to take a course, take a test, or complete any course-related assignment, including but not limited to, signing in/registering attendance for another student without permission from the instructor.
    9. Paying or offering to pay money or other valuables to obtain or coerce another person to obtain by any means items, including but not limited to, (1) an unadministered test, test key, homework solution or computer program/software or (2) information about an unadministered test, test key, homework solution or computer program.
    10. Falsifying research data, laboratory reports, and/or other academic work offered for credit.
    11. Taking, keeping, misplacing, damaging or altering property of the university or of another individual if the student knows or reasonably should know that an unfair academic advantage would be gained by such conduct.
  2. “Plagiarism” includes, but is not limited to, the following:
    1. Representation of words, ideas, illustrations, structure, computer code, and other expression or media of another as one’s own.
    2. Improper citation or lack of acknowledgement that direct, paraphrased, or summarized materials are not one’s own.
    3. Self-plagiarism that involves submission of the same written assignment for two courses without prior permission of the instructor and/or failure to cite correctly previous work written by the same student.
  3. “Collusion” includes, but is not limited to, the following:
    1. The unauthorized collaboration with another person in preparing academic assignments offered for credit.
    2. Collaboration with another person to commit a violation of any section of the rules on academic dishonesty.
  4. “Falsifying academic records” includes, but is not limited to, the following:
    1. Altering or assisting in the altering of any official record of the university and/or submitting false information.
    2. Omitting requested information that is required for, or related to, any academic record of the university. Academic records include, but are not limited to, applications for admission, awarding of a degree, grade reports, test papers, registration materials, grade change forms, and reporting forms used by the Office of the Registrar. A former student who engages in such conduct is subject to a bar against readmission, revocation of a degree, and withdrawal of a diploma.
  5. “Misrepresenting facts” to the university or an agent of the university includes, but is not limited to, the following:
    1. Providing false grades, resumes, or other academic information.
    2. Providing false or misleading information in an effort to receive a postponement or an extension on a test, quiz, or other assignment to obtain an academic or financial benefit for oneself or another individual.
    3. Providing false or misleading information in an effort to injure another student academically or financially.

NOTE: See for more Academic Integrity information.

Instructor Responsibilities. Any person becoming aware of alleged violations of academic integrity should report the allegation to the instructor of record in the course. The instructor in a course is responsible for initiating action in each case of dishonesty or plagiarism that occurs in that class. The instructor may contact the Office of Student Conduct to discuss the nature of the violation and the student’s record of academic integrity violations. The instructor should attempt to discuss the matter with the student and receive a response from the student about the allegations. Then, the instructor may assign academic sanctions, including but not limited to, assigning a paper or research project related to academic integrity, assigning a make-up assignment that is different from the original assignment, issuing no credit for the original assignment, reducing the grade for the assignment and/or course, issuing a failing grade on the assignment, and/or issuing a failing grade for the course. All academic integrity violations should be referred to the Office of Student Conduct as a central clearinghouse of violations and for adjudication as a Code of Student Conduct violation in which disciplinary sanctions, conditions, and/or restrictions will be assigned.

Withdrawal and Assignment of Grades. Once a student has been notified of an academic integrity violation, the student may not drop the course until the academic integrity processes are complete. A student should continue academic class and coursework until a final decision is made. If it is determined that the student was not responsible for academic integrity violations, the student may file a request with the Assistant Vice Provost for Student Affairs for approval to drop the course or withdraw from the university retroactively, without academic and financial penalty.

If a referring faculty member must submit a final course grade before an academic integrity violation allegation is resolved, the faculty member should notify the Registrar of the intention to assign a grade of F and/or leave the final grade blank. The involved student shall be given a temporary grade of X, which does not affect the student’s GPA, until the academic integrity adjudication process is complete. When the adjudication process is complete, the final grade will be assigned through the appropriate academic channels and the completion of a grade change form. When a student is found responsible for academic integrity violations, the recommended academic sanction will be enforced. When a student is found not responsible for academic integrity violations, the student will be entitled to the grade he/she would have received in the absence of an academic integrity violation.

All appeals related to academic integrity violations should follow the process outlined in the Student Handbook, Part X.E: Code of Student Conduct: Disciplinary Appeals Procedures.

Referrals to the Office of Student Conduct. In addition to the assignment of academic sanctions by the instructor of record, a referral of the academic integrity violation should also be made to the Office of Student Conduct for the assignment of disciplinary sanctions. A student referred to the Office of Student Conduct for alleged violations of academic misconduct is entitled to all substantive and procedural guarantees provided in the Code of Student Conduct. Law students are subject to discipline procedures as described in the Honor Code of the School of Law. Instructors of record of the course in which the violation occurred and the Associate Academic Dean of the college in which the student is enrolled may participate in the adjudication of the violation and assignment of additional sanctions, conditions and/or restrictions with the Office of Student Conduct as outlined in the Code of Student Conduct.

Undergraduate Honors

Honor Rolls. Full-time undergraduate students who earn a grade point average of 4.0 during a semester are eligible for the President’s Honor List. Those who earn a GPA of 3.5 or higher during a semester are eligible for the Dean’s Honor List of the college in which they are enrolled during that semester. For these acknowledgments, students must be enrolled for at least 12 hours, excluding any courses that are graded pass/fail.

Students taking between 7 and 11 hours and enrolled in the South Plains College (SPC) Spanish courses taught on the Texas Tech campus (SPCS 1501, 1502) may count the SPC hours to accumulate enough hours to qualify for the President’s Honor List and the Dean’s Honor List if they would otherwise qualify for those honors without the SPC courses. The SPC grades are not sufficient to advance students to qualify for the President’s or Dean’s list, but the courses can be used to acquire the necessary number of hours (minimum of 12) to qualify and thus keep the student eligible.

Graduation with Honors. Members of a graduating class who complete their work with a pure Texas Tech University grade point average of 3.9 or above are graduated Summa Cum Laude; those who complete their work with a GPA of 3.7 to 3.89 are graduated Magna Cum Laude; and those who complete their work with a GPA of 3.5 to 3.69 are graduated Cum Laude. Appropriate designation of the honor is made on the diploma and on the commencement program. The grade point average for graduation honors is calculated using all hours taken at Texas Tech University, and those hours must include the final two semesters prior to graduation. Students are considered for graduation honors only if a minimum of 48 semester credit hours have been completed at Texas Tech University. The grade point average for graduation honors is calculated using all hours taken at Texas Tech University, including Texas Tech University approved study abroad credit, pass/fail credit, and graduate hours applied toward the undergraduate degree. However, no CLEP, foreign language placement tests, or similar types of credit that do not involve course enrollment should be counted in calculating the GPA for graduation honors. Only grades earned at Texas Tech are counted, and only the cumulative GPA without grade replacements is used to calculate honors.

Those who graduate from the Honors College after acquiring at least 24 Honors credit hours (including two Honors seminars) graduate with “Honors,” a distinction that is noted on diplomas and transcripts and receives special recognition at graduation ceremonies. Those who also complete an Honors thesis or project consisting of 6 additional hours graduate with “Highest Honors.”

Honors Studies. Honors courses are available to students in all undergraduate colleges. Interested students should consult the dean of the Honors College or their college advisors.

Texas Tech offers one of the best honors programs in the nation for highly motivated and academically talented students who want to maximize their college education. Students must make special application to be considered for admission to the Honors College either as an entering freshman or as a continuing Texas Tech or transfer student. With the exception of those in the honors arts and letters major, students accepted into the Honors College are also enrolled concurrently in the college that houses their major area of study.

Honor Societies and Organizations. The honorary societies listed here represent more than 20 university organizations open to undergraduates who qualify as a result of their academic achievements. To view a comprehensive listing of all honorary societies at Texas Tech, see

  • Phi Beta Kappa - Eligibility is limited to upper-division students with outstanding records of achievement in what the Phi Beta Kappa Society designates as the liberal arts and sciences. Phi Beta Kappa is the oldest honorary society in America and has chapters at only three public universities in Texas.
  • Mortar Board - Mortar Board is a national honor society that recognizes college seniors for distinguished ability and achievement in scholarship, leadership, and service. The Texas Tech chapter is limited to 50 of the top seniors on campus, and members are chosen each spring.
  • Omicron Delta Kappa - Omicron Delta Kappa is a national leadership honor society in which student membership candidates must rank in the upper 35 percent in scholarship of their school or college and must show leadership in at least one of five areas: scholarship; athletics; campus or community service, social and religious activities, and campus government; journalism, speech, and the mass media; and creative and performing arts.
  • Phi Kappa Phi - The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi is the nation’s oldest all-discipline honor society. Membership is by invitation only to the top 7.5 percent of second semester juniors and the top 10 percent of seniors and graduate students.
  • National Society of Collegiate Scholars - The National Society of Collegiate Scholars is an honors organization recognizing outstanding academic achievement among first- and second-year students who rank in the top 20th percentile of their class and have a minimum GPA of 3.4. Chapters are involved in service to their campus and local communities as well as scholastic and social activities.
  • Honor Societies for Freshmen - Alpha Lambda Delta and Phi Eta Sigma are national honor societies that recognize scholastic attainment during the freshman year. Membership is offered to students who earn a grade point average of at least 3.5 during the first semester of their freshman year while completing at least 12 semester hours of coursework. Students who do not qualify during the first semester may become eligible by earning a grade point average of at least 3.5 for the first two semesters of work combined.

Service Learning Course Designation

Service learning courses are available to all Texas Tech University students and are identified with an “S” in the course section number, e.g. Section S01. Service learning is a pedagogy that links academic study and civic engagement through thoughtfully organized service that meets the needs of the community. The service is structured by and integrated into the academic curriculum, which provides opportunities for students to learn and develop through critical reflection.

A partnership of the Center for Active Learning and Undergraduate Engagement (CALUE) and the Teaching, Learning and Professional Development Center (TLPDC), the Service Learning Program is committed to providing rigorous and reflective academic experiences for students. Texas Tech faculty from diverse academic disciplines report that service learning enhances their teaching and students’ interest in course material, and connects both faculty and students to the community.

Undergraduate Academic Status Policy

Good Standing, Probation, Suspension

Texas Tech University has four possible academic status levels for students:

  1. Academic Good Standing. The student has a cumulative GPA at or above 2.0 and is eligible for all extracurricular activities as governed by the rules of the specific activity. Some academic and extracurricular programs have requirements over and above the cumulative GPA of 2.0. Students who have a cumulative GPA above 2.0 but whose current semester GPA is below 2.0 should seek advice from their academic dean.
  2. Academic Probation. A student whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.0 will be placed on “academic probation.” Such a student may not enroll for more than 16 hours without prior approval of the academic dean. In addition, the student must continue to seek regularly scheduled advice and counsel from an academic advisor or the dean. Students whose semester GPA is below 2.0 in their first semester at Texas Tech must complete in the next semester an Academic Recovery Plan, enroll in a Programs for Academic Development and Retention (PADR) course, and pay a nonrefundable course fee. Once required to enroll in a PADR course, students must repeat the course every term that they are enrolled at Texas Tech until the course is successfully completed. A student on academic probation remains eligible for all extracurricular activities as governed by the rules of the specific activity.
  3. Continued Academic Probation. A probationary student whose current GPA is 2.0 or higher but whose cumulative GPA is below 2.0 will be placed on “continued academic probation” until the cumulative GPA is 2.0 or higher. Such a student may not enroll for more than 16 hours without prior approval of the academic dean. The student will remain eligible for all extracurricular activities as governed by the rules of the specific activity subject to the conditions established by the academic dean or committee granting permission to attend classes. Failure to meet the conditions established will result in academic suspension.
  4. Academic Suspension. A probationary student who has a current and a cumulative GPA below 2.0 at the end of a fall or spring semester will be on suspension unless grade replacements for courses completed at that time raise the cumulative GPA above 2.0. Texas Tech does not suspend students at the end of a summer term. However, summer grades can result in probation, and if the student does not achieve a 2.0 or better cumulative grade point average in the subsequent semester of enrollment, suspension can result.

A suspended student who attains a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher as a result of grade replacement and after official grades have been submitted and academic status has been determined may be allowed to attend Texas Tech University upon appeal to the academic dean of the college in which the student is enrolled. Any courses that are completed after probation or suspension status has been determined for a particular semester will not alter that probation or suspension.

A student on academic suspension is not permitted to take classes and is ineligible to participate in any extracurricular activities once the suspension is posted. If the circumstances that resulted in the suspension are mitigating, an appeal may be directed to the appropriate academic dean or committee. The student is ineligible to participate in extracurricular activities during the appeal process. If the appeal results in granting the student permission to attend classes, then the student will be reactivated, and a transcript notation made that allows the student to attend until the student meets the conditions established by the academic dean or committee granting the appeal and/or achieves a cumulative GPA at or above 2.0.

Reinstatement, Readmission After Suspension

Students wishing to return to the university after suspension will be treated as former students for reinstatement purposes and must provide official transcripts for all academic work completed at institutions other than Texas Tech. Students who left in good standing, on probation or on first suspension must have a 2.0 GPA on work taken since leaving Texas Tech. Application materials and deadlines for former students are available at

Reinstatement granted after suspension will be probationary, and students who apply for reinstatement after suspension will be required to undergo any testing and/or counseling considered necessary by the academic dean.

Conditions of Return from a First Academic Suspension. Students on academic suspension may seek reinstatement after a minimum of one semester. Both summer terms are considered to be a semester for the purpose of serving a suspension. Students who are reinstated after first suspension will be required to complete successfully a Programs for Academic Development and Retention (PADR) course for their major during their first semester of reinstatement and pay a nonrefundable course fee (see Once required to enroll in a PADR course, students must repeat the course every term that they are enrolled at Texas Tech until the course is successfully completed. Attendance in the PADR class is mandatory from the first day of classes. Five absences in a PADR class in the summer and fall terms or three absences in the summer terms will result in a student being withdrawn from the university. Absences accumulate from the beginning of the semester.

Students who are reinstated from a first suspension and desire to change colleges to pursue a different major or career goal must (1) contact the associate academic dean of the college to which they desire to transfer and ensure they meet enrollment requirements, (2) complete an academic transfer form in the receiving dean’s office, and (3) complete the process by the last day to change colleges, which is the first day of open registration for the next semester.

Subsequent Suspensions and Conditions of Return. Students who have received more than one suspension may seek readmission after two semesters. Both summer terms are considered to be a semester for the purpose of serving a suspension. Students seeking to be readmitted should go to and complete the Returning Student Application Form, including the required statement of how they plan to complete a degree program successfully.

Returning students must submit all transcripts for work completed at other institutions of higher education attended since leaving Texas Tech. After the application, transcripts, and required fee are received by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, a message will be sent to the applicant describing the following remaining steps to be readmitted:

  1. All returning students are required to meet with the academic dean (or designee) of the college for which they are requesting admission. Returning students will then prepare an academic recovery plan that complies with college and/or program admission requirements.
  2. Returning students entering as an undeclared major are required to meet with a University Advising staff member to develop an academic recovery plan.
  3. The completed “Second Academic Suspension Academic Dean’s Approval Form” concludes the readmission process. This form must be submitted to the Department of Undergraduate Admissions, which will admit the student upon receipt of the form.

Students who fail to adhere to the terms of the agreements required for readmission may be withdrawn from the university and/or barred from enrolling in other Texas Tech University courses until the terms of the contract are successfully completed.

Graduate-On-Time (GOT): Saves You Money

The university’s Graduate-On-Time Partnership Agreement program (GOT contract) saves students money on their undergraduate education. National and state statistics reveal students take an additional 1 to 1.5 years beyond institutional expected timelines to graduate (i.e. 5.5 years to graduate with a 4 year degree or 6.5 years to graduate with a 5 year degree).

When students sign and follow the GOT plan, they can save one to three semesters of college, translating into a savings of $9,931 to $29,793 or more in out-of-pocket expenses simply by actively planning to graduate on time (i.e. earn their four-year degree in four years). Additionally, students can begin their career or graduate/professional school program sooner.

The GOT partnership agreement is a two-party agreement signed by the student and the provost of Texas Tech University. The agreement is offered to first-year freshmen to help ensure their college investment will be used as efficiently as possible. First-year students will receive information about the Graduate-On-Time initiative in the academic college and/or advising sessions during Red Raider Orientation. Students may sign the GOT partnership agreement when meeting with their college/department academic advisor during Red Raider Orientation or any time prior to advance registration during the second long semester of their first year of classes (early April for students who enter in the fall).

More than 70 percent of undergraduate degrees at Texas Tech are designated for a 4-year graduation timeline with a minimum course load of 15 hours a semester. For students in programs requiring more hours, such as engineering or architecture, a timely graduation could mean 5 to 5.5 years. Dropping courses, retaking classes or earning credit for less than a full course load will delay graduation. The GOT agreement helps students understand their degree plan, intentionally plan their own graduation timeline, track academic progress, and earn a degree within the university-specified time frame. Students can save time and money by being more aware of how today’s decisions might affect their intended graduation. A list of majors and the number of years and hours required to complete each degree can be found at

Students will work with their college/department academic advisor to develop an educational plan that will assist the student in graduating within the specified time period. The plan will include but is not limited to the following:

  • A semester-by-semester plan of course sequencing strategically tailored to the individual student’s academic needs and goals.
  • A timeline for making informed decisions leading to a best-fit choice of major and career.
  • A means of making efficient use of academic support services available to the student to enhance academic success.

Student Commitment

By signing the GOT partnership agreement, the student agrees to the following conditions:

  • Choose a major that qualifies for the GOT partnership.
  • Be admitted to a major (or change majors) in time to meet the sequence of required courses in the GOT agreement period.
  • Stay on track by earning a minimum of 30 credit hours per academic calendar year (September to August).
  • Avoid being placed on academic suspension.
  • Maintain a current email address, local mailing address, and other contact information using the MyTech tab on the website
  • Meet with the academic program advisor for the major at least once each semester to discuss progress toward graduation, identify courses needed the next semester, and make appropriate adjustments to the educational plan.
  • Register during the advance registration period.
  • Enroll in and successfully complete the courses needed for the chosen academic program of study with the understanding that certain courses must be taken during specific terms to allow for appropriate progress toward the degree and timely graduation.
  • Accept responsibility for monitoring own academic progress to stay on schedule for graduating on time. This includes filing a degree plan and submitting Intent to Graduate forms by the stipulated deadlines.
  • Avoid cancellation of an advance registration schedule by meeting all payment obligations to Texas Tech.
  • Accept responsibility for timely annual application for all necessary financial assistance.
  • Notify the academic program advisor for the major immediately if graduation appears in danger of being delayed.
  • Keep documentation to prove that all these requirements were satisfied.

Texas Tech Commitment

Texas Tech University assures GOT partnership agreement participants that they will be able to enroll in courses that permit graduation in the specified and mutually agreed upon time period. The plan does not apply to programs combining a baccalaureate and master’s degree. Texas Tech will ensure the availability of courses. In the event the university does not satisfy the commitments made herein and the student would be unable to graduate due to the unavailability of a course(s), the department and college offering the major will choose one of the following options as the exclusive remedy for GOT partnership agreement signers:

  • Allow the student to graduate in the specified and mutually agreed upon time period, substituting a different course(s) or independent study assignment for the unavailable course(s) as determined by the department and college offering the major.
  • Allow the student to graduate on time by waiving the requirement to be met by the department or college offering the major.
  • Allow the unavailability of a course(s) to delay the student from graduating on time, in which case the university will pay the institutional tuition and fees for the student to take the unavailable course(s) at Texas Tech University in a later term.

For more information on the GOT program and its benefits, refer to or contact DaNay Phelps, 234 West Hall, 806.742.0876,

Note: The Graduate-On-Time Partnership Agreement program is not a rebate program. This program is a savings program. For information concerning the State of Texas Tuition Rebate for Certain Undergraduates, visit