The College of Western Idaho (CWI) operates on the semester system. The academic year includes two 16-week semesters (fall and spring) and multiple summer terms. The academic calendar can be found here.
In addition to full semester-length courses, CWI offers shortened courses, such as 4-week or 8-week courses. Day, evening, weekend, and online courses are available in order to meet the needs of students who have work or family responsibilities.
College Credit Hours
CWI grants credit for college work based on the national standard of the Carnegie Unit. CWI defines a credit hour as follows:
A credit, sometimes referred to as semester credit or semester hour, is related to time spent in class, study, preparation, laboratory, or field experience.
One semester credit hour normally requires 45 hours of student work, or:
- 50 Minutes in class each week for one semester (which assumes twice this amount of time in study and preparation outside the classroom), or
- Two to three hours in laboratory each week for a semester, or
- The equivalent combinations of 1 and 2.
Credit for workshops and short courses is granted on the basis of one semester credit for 45 hours of scholarly activity.
The following numbering system is used for all credit courses offered by CWI:
- Zero Level (000–099): Course content is considered below college-freshman level. These courses are not applicable for graduation.
- One Hundred Level (100–199): Course content taught at the college-freshman level.
- Two Hundred Level (200–299): Course content taught at the college-sophomore level.
Student Class Level
The following number of completed credits determines a student’s class level:
|Class Level||Credits Completed|
|Sophomore||26 or more|
Student Enrollment Status
Full-time Students: Degree-seeking students taking 12 or more credits per term.
Part-time Students: Degree-seeking students taking fewer than 12 credits per term.
Non-matriculated Students: Non-degree-seeking students.
President’s List and Dean’s List
The President’s List and Dean’s List are term-based distinctions that recognize academic excellence based on grade point average (GPA). These distinctions are awarded at the end of each term (semester). To be eligible for either list, a student must have completed six (6) or more credits of letter graded courses within a single term. Because pass/no pass courses are not used to calculate a student's GPA, they are excluded when calculating the six (6) or more credits of letter graded courses needed to be considered eligible. Grades of Incomplete (I) and/or missing grades will prevent a student from receiving honors.
Minimum GPA Requirements
President’s List: 4.00 Term GPA
Dean’s List: 3.50 to 3.99 Term GPA
Students on the President’s List or Dean’s List are congratulated and notified by email at the end of the term. The President’s List and Dean’s List are published on CWI’s website to honor those receiving these distinctions; however, students who qualify for either list will be omitted from the online publication if they have submitted a Request for Directory Hold form to One Stop Student Services.
The effect of repeating a course is as follows:
- Only the highest grade earned on a repeated course will count in the GPA.
- All grades other than “A” are repeatable.
- All iterations of the course will continue to show on the transcript with their respective grades.
- A grade of “C” or above is considered passing for all courses.
- Certain courses may be repeated and the credits accumulated. For all others, the course with the lower grade is marked to show that it has been repeated.
Any student wishing to improve their grade in a course to meet core or degree requirements may register to repeat a course. A student may register directly into the course on the first two attempts.
Note: Some programs may not allow multiple attempts for a course.
Any student wishing to register for a third attempt at a course must meet with an advisor prior to registration as a measure to help facilitate student success.
Courses dropped within the first 10 days of the semester are excluded from the three-registrations maximum. Also excluded from this policy are courses that can be taken multiple times for additional credit, such as fitness-activity courses, private music lessons, and art-studio classes.
Petitions to register beyond three attempts must be made through the department chair over the area of study.
Note: Please refer to the Financial Aid portion of the catalog to review how numerous attempts at a course may affect financial aid eligibility. Students receiving VA Education benefits should contact a VA Specialist prior to repeating any coursework.
Class Attendance and Participation
CWI recognizes that regular attendance is the student’s responsibility. Regular attendance and active participation not only contribute to a student's academic success but may have a significant impact on eligibility to receive federal financial aid and/or Veteran Affairs (VA) educational benefits.
Instructors are required to submit attendance and participation information during the first two weeks of the semester. An instructor may evaluate the lack of attendance in terms of the course requirements and initiate a drop for non-attendance if the student is not actively participating during the first two weeks of class. Instructors must also report the last date of attendance at the end of the semester for any failing grades.
The College must make adjustments in federal financial aid and VA benefits when a student drops a course or no longer attends and/or actively participates. These adjustments may result in students owing funds to the College, the U.S. Department of Education, and/or the Veterans Administration.
Students must withdraw themselves if they decide not to complete any classes. Students who stop attending yet do not drop/withdraw from their classes will get failing grades (or whatever grades they earned). After 75 percent of the term has elapsed (twelfth week of the semester for fall and spring full-semester classes) students cannot initiate drops/withdrawals. Students will be issued grades after this deadline.
Any student absent from a written test shall be regarded as having failed that test. However, if such absence is caused by some unavoidable, extenuating circumstance, the instructor shall give a comparable test to the student at a later date. The burden of proof for extenuating circumstances lies with the student and final determination is made by the instructor.