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Academic Discharges and Student Classifications

Classifications, Discharges, Continuance

Academic Classifications:

A table of credit hours required for each academic classification for each major is provided on the Registrar's Web page, then clicking on Classification for the table of credit hours determined by the year you entered The Citadel.


4A (first-semester freshman) through

  • 3B (second-semester sophomore) are based strictly on hours earned. For example, to be classified 3A (first-semester sophomore), the cadet’s total hours earned must be no less than 8 fewer than the total hours required through the spring semester of the freshman year of the major course of study.
  • To be academically eligible to be classified as a first-semester junior (2A), a cadet should have completed the Fine Arts requirement in addition to the requirement for hours earned.
  • To be academically eligible to be classified as a first-semester senior (1A), a cadet must have earned a sufficient number of hours to be no more than 8 hours short of the number of hours required in the major course of study through the summer semester of the junior year.

Academic Classification is used by the Office of Financial Aid to determine loan eligibility and by the Commandant’s Office to determine room assignments, the appropriate class numeral, class privileges, and eligibility to hold cadet rank.

Class Privileges

  • Cadets are considered for privileges based on their Academic Classifications.
  • To be eligible to receive class privileges, a cadet must not be on Academic Probation and must be both conduct and physically proficient.

Academic Probation

A student is placed on Academic Probation for any semester when the cumulative grade-point average based on courses taken at The Citadel fails to meet the requirements for Continuance without Probation as outlined in the following table:

Total Hours
(Quality Hours Plus
Transfer & Pass/Fail Hours
Grade-Point Average
for Continuance
without Probation
100 & above

The column labeled “Total Hours” includes: 1) All credits attempted for which a grade of A, B, C, D, or F was received at The Citadel, 2) Coursework transferred from other colleges, and 3) Courses taken Pass/Fail or in which the grade of U was earned.

A student is placed on Academic Probation (avoiding Academic Discharge) for any semester when the cumulative grade-point average based on courses taken at The Citadel meets the following minimum requirements as shown in the following table:

Total Hours
(Quality Hours Plus
Transfer & Pass/Fail Hours
Grade-Point Average
for Continuance
on Probation
100 & above

Academic Criteria for Continuance

  • In order to be eligible to continue at The Citadel: 1. A student must meet minimum standards for hours earned at The Citadel or for hours properly transferred from another accredited institution and 2. Have the minimum cumulative grade-point average maintained as shown in the above tables.
  • These criteria are assessed initially after the cadet’s second semester at The Citadel and then at the end of each two-semester period.
  • Credits earned through AP or coursework taken by an entering freshman in the summer prior to initial matriculation WILL NOT be used toward meeting the minimum standard for hours earned in an academic year.
  • Although The Citadel will notify students who are deficient in either or both areas, it is the responsibility of the student to ensure that these criteria are met.
  • To avoid Academic Discharge, a student must meet both hour and GPA requirements concurrently either at the end of the fall semester, at the end of the spring semester, or in August, as appropriate.
  • A full-time student (one carrying at least 12 credit hours each semester) must pass at least 24 semester hours in each 12-month period after initial matriculation or readmission. If a previously passed course is repeated, the hours may be used only once toward meeting requirements for hours passed.
  • Part-time students must pass 50% of the hours attempted.
  • Each student must maintain a minimum cumulative grade-point average as prescribed in the preceding tables. This grade-point average is calculated as described earlier in this section.

For the purpose of determining Academic Probation, Criteria for Continuance, Dean’s List, Gold Stars, Graduation, and other academic matters, the grade-point average will be computed to three decimal places.


Academic Discharge

  • A cadet’s academic record will be subject to formal review for purposes of Academic Discharge at the end of the second semester after initial matriculation at The Citadel.
  • During these two semesters and the summer sessions after initial matriculation, the cadet must have earned at least 24 credit hours and must at the time of review meet GPA requirements for continuance. If these requirements are not met concurrently at that time, the cadet will be discharged for academic deficiencies.
  • Academic assessment for the purpose of Academic Discharge is conducted at the end of each two-semester period, and the associated summer sessions, after the student is admitted or readmitted. Under the Academic Discharge Policy, cadets may be discharged for academic deficiencies in January or in August of each year.
  • Credits completed while a student is on Academic Discharge will not normally be accepted for transfer to The Citadel. Exceptions to this policy must have the approval of the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs.
  • Summer session work cannot make students ineligible to enroll in the following fall semester, if they were eligible for enrollment at the end of the previous spring semester.
  • Minimum grade-point averages for the various Total Hours categories are as shown in the previous sections; however, the minimum GPA required will not be raised as a result of summer school work. That is, students moving from one Total Hours category to the next higher category as a result of credit hours earned in summer school at The Citadel or elsewhere will only be required to meet the GPA minimum of the lower category of credit hours for continuance in the following fall term.
  • Students who voluntarily withdraw at times other than January or August or who are discharged for other than academic reasons will have their academic status assessed upon application for readmission.
  • When the number of unexcused absences reaches 5, the student and his or her parents will be issued a warning by the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs that continued disregard of the academic policy requiring class attendance (10 or more absences) will result in an Academic Discharge from the College.
  • If the number of unexcused absences reaches 10, the student will be permitted to complete the current semester, but will be academically discharged from the College for the following semester.
  • Cadets who accumulate 10 or more unexcused absences in the spring semester and who would otherwise be eligible to participate in Commencement will not be permitted to do so. In all other circumstances, cadets who accumulate 10 or more unexcused absences will earn an Academic Discharge.

Second Academic Discharge

  • A student who fails for a second time to meet minimum academic criteria for continuance will be awarded a second Academic Discharge.
  • The Associate Provost for Academic Affairs will review the academic record and any extenuating circumstances the student wishes to present in writing.
  • Based on this review and in consultation with the Faculty Advisor and the Department Head or Associate Dean, the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs will determine the conditions under which the student may be considered for readmission after a second Academic Discharge.

Conduct Discharge

Cadets who have been suspended or dismissed or who leave the College with a Disciplinary Board pending are not eligible to attend any undergraduate class at The Citadel—day, evening, or summer—or to transfer credits back to The Citadel for any courses taken during the period of discharge.

Readmission Guidelines

  • A student who is discharged for academic reasons for the first time may apply for readmission after being out of school for one semester. Summer school does not constitute a semester in this instance.
  • Students who are discharged for academic or disciplinary reasons may not, during the period of discharge, take courses for transfer to The Citadel.The deadline for the receipt of an application for readmission for Maymester is March 1, for fall term is June 1 and for spring term is October 1. In addition to any specific readmission requirements stated at the time of discharge, applicants for readmission to the South Carolina Corps of Cadets must meet the personal and physical fitness requirements for initial admission. These include the following:
    1. Applicants for readmission must meet the U.S. Army standard for height/weight and be physically qualified as determined by the college physician.
    2. Applicants for readmission may not be married nor have childcare responsibility for any minor child related to him or her by blood or marriage.
    3. Applicants must not have a record of conviction of a criminal offense showing poor moral character.

If approved for readmission after an Academic Discharge, the student will be readmitted on Academic Probation. Cadets who have been approved for readmission may or may not be assigned to their former cadet company.

Cadets Called to Active Duty

When cadets are called to Active Duty, it is the policy of The Citadel to minimize the academic and financial impacts of being required to interrupt their studies. When the cadet learns that call to active duty is likely, he/she notifies the Office of the Associate Provost and his/her Tactical Officer.


If the cadet and his/her instructors feel that completing courses in which he/she is currently enrolled is not a reasonable expectation, the cadet is awarded the grade of W in each course and is provided a full refund, less room and board used as well as One Card charges. When the cadet elects not to withdraw from all courses, refunds of tuition and fees are prorated based on a per-credit-hour rate, and the number of credits the cadet and his/her faculty members believe he/she will be able to complete.


When the date of required departure from The Citadel becomes fixed, the cadet works with his/her instructors to determine if it is reasonable to complete courses after departing on active duty or delaying completion until the cadet returns to The Citadel. In this effort, the instructor is not expected to modify the expectations or assignments of the course, but to help the student determine if it is feasible to continue to work on, and ultimately complete, course requirements after leaving The Citadel. In some cases, the date of departure is sufficiently late in the semester that final course assignments and the final exam can be completed before the cadet leaves campus. This, however, will likely be the exception rather than the rule, and faculty members are not expected to “force” early course completion.

When the faculty member and the student feel that it is not reasonable to complete requirements in a particular course, the student is withdrawn from that course with the grade of W. When the faculty member and student feel that requirements in a particular course can be completed by the student through independent study, the grade of I is given until course requirements are met. If at any time the faculty member and/or the student feel that completing the course is no longer a reasonable expectation, the student is given the grade of W in that course.

Civilian Students in Cadet Classes

With the exceptions of Day Students, Returning Veteran Cadets, and Non-Cadet Veteran Day Students, no civilian students are permitted to take classes with the Corps of Cadets. These three student categories are defined below. In addition, cadets are not allowed to enroll in evening sections of undergraduate courses with civilian students.

Day Student Status

Cadets will normally remain in the Corps of Cadets until degree requirements have been met. Cadets who have completed eight semesters in the Corps of Cadets, all ROTC requirements, and all required physical education courses and have been cleared by the Commandant and the Treasurer may apply for Day Student status through the Office of the Registrar. Transfer of credit from other institutions is severely limited while in Day Student status.

If Day Student status is approved, the student must live off campus and may attend day classes with the Corps of Cadets or evening undergraduate classes in The Citadel Graduate College. While on campus in Day Student status, students will wear civilian clothes, but their attire is expected to be compatible with the military environment established by the uniformed Corps of Cadets.

For Day Students, the following specific dress code is in force:

  1. Regulations pertaining to body piercing and tattoos are the same as those for the members of the Corps of Cadets.
  2. A broken uniform is unattractive anywhere, but it is especially unsuited for a military college campus or classroom. Portions of cadet uniforms are not, therefore, to be worn by non-cadets.
  3. Hair will be neatly trimmed and styled; as will mustaches and sideburns if they are worn. Men will be permitted to wear beards only when required to do so for medical reasons, which must be explained in writing by a physician and submitted to the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs.
  4. Students will wear business attire when attending formal hops and similar occasions when the members of the Corps of Cadets are required to appear in full dress or white uniform.
  5. Any student who is not in compliance with minimum standards for personal appearance will be required to leave campus until discrepancies are corrected. Repeated offences may result in discharge from the college.

Veteran Cadet Program

Effective with the fall 2008 semester, cadets who have begun their pursuit of the cadet degree and have elected to pursue or have been called to active military service will be provided the following options if their tour on active duty was not for training purposes and they have been discharged honorably with full rights and privileges of a veteran.

Option 1 If they are eligible, they may return to the Corps of Cadets to continue to pursue the cadet degree.

Option 2 They may enroll as civilian students in classes with the Corps of Cadets to pursue a non-cadet degree with non-cadet diploma and ring (the same diploma and ring available for current active duty students and students in the Citadel Graduate College (and formerly awarded to veteran students).

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Must have been sworn into the Corps of Cadets at The Citadel.
  • Must have been honorably discharged from active duty with the full rights and privileges of a veteran.
  • Must meet academic and disciplinary criteria for readmission to The Citadel.

Students Electing this Option:

  • May enroll in civilian status in classes with the Corps of Cadets.
  • May enroll in evening classes in the Citadel Graduate College and are eligible to earn the non-cadet degree/diploma and receive the non-cadet ring currently awarded to active duty students and students in the Citadel Graduate College (and formerly awarded to veteran students).
  • May not return to the Corps of Cadets but will be allowed to participate in Cadet Commencement in cap and gown.

At its 14 June 2008 meeting, the Board of Visitors approved the pursuit of the Cadet Degree, Diploma, and Ring through the Veteran Cadet Program under the following conditions:

  • The former cadet has received while on active duty and in combat an injury that precludes readmission to the Corps of Cadets.
  • The former cadet has served at least four semesters in the Corps of Cadets prior to moving to Veteran Cadet status.

Former cadets who are approved to pursue the cadet degree in Veteran Cadet status will be awarded credit for appropriate ROTC courses 301, 302, 401, and 402 based on their active duty service, and requirements to complete RPED 250/251 and two activity courses will be waived. Through these options, The Citadel is attempting to address the needs of those students who have formally joined the Corps of Cadets but prior to completing the cadet degree have been called to active duty or have elected to serve on active duty that ends with an Honorable Discharge as a veteran.

Non-Cadet Veteran Day Program

An eligible non-cadet veteran is defined to be an individual who provides evidence through a Department of Defense Form DD 214 of Honorable Discharge from one of the armed services indicating a minimum of 90 consecutive days of full-time federal active service, other than active duty for training.

Academic Requirements:

  • Veteran applicants must meet the academic standards outlined under the High School Course Requirements and Entrance Examinations for the Corps of Cadets found in the Requirements for Admission section of the catalog or provide evidence of previous satisfactory college work.
  • Qualified veteran students applying as transfer students must meet the requirements as stated in Transfer Student Admissions in the Requirements for Admission section of the catalog.

Personal Requirements:

  1. Veteran applicants are civilians and are not subject to those personal requirements specific to the Corps of Cadets. They will not be subject to the RPED or ROTC requirements.
  2. Veteran applicants must not have a record of conviction of a criminal offense showing poor moral character.

For admission requirements, please refer to Non-Cadet Veteran Day Admissions in the Requirements for Admission section of the Course Catalog,

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