Glossary of college terms
Academic Advisor: A professor or staff person within UTEP who assists in planning a student’s academic program of study.
Academic Dishonesty: A range of serious offenses that may result in disciplinary action that include failing the course, being placed on academic probation, or even being dismissed from UTEP.
Academic Probation: Based on grade point average (GPA) and automatically assigned by the registrar’s office if GPA falls below 2.0, which is equivalent to a grade of “C.”
Administrative Hold: A “hold” placed on a student’s record that does not allow the student to register.
Alumni Association: Organization of UTEP graduates and former students. Works closely with the Alumni Office to coordinate events and programs such as Homecoming, Season of Lights, Top Ten Seniors
Bachelor’s Degree: Degree earned after completion of required credit hours within a particular field of study in addition to general requirement courses.
Blue Book: A standard examination booklet used for essay exams, available in the UTEP Bookstore.
Bookstore: The UTEP Bookstore sells textbooks, greeting cards, scantrons, a variety of books and magazines, and UTEP clothing.
Chair: Academic leader of the professors, lecturers, and staff within a department.
Classification: Specific designation for students,
Catalog: An online publication that provides information about university policies, procedures, and graduation requirements for each major. UTEP’s Undergraduate and Graduate Catalogs are located at the following site: http://www.utep.edu/catalog/.
College or School: A unit at UTEP that houses numerous academic departments. For example, the College of Engineering includes the following departments: Civil Engineering; Computer Science; Electrical and Computer Engineering; Industrial, Manufacturing, and Systems Engineering, Mechanical Engineering; and Metallurgical and Materials Engineering.
Commencement: Graduation ceremony, generally held the Saturday immediately following the last day of finals.
Co-op: An opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the student’s field of study. Generally lasts two or more semesters. Co-ops are paid positions. Contact the University Career Center at 747-5640 for more information.
Core Curriculum: A menu of first-year (freshman) and sophomore-level courses. Students must take a minimum of 42 semester credit hours from the Core Curriculum, which represents a variety of disciplines. The Core Curriculum provides an intellectual foundation for all students. Students must earn a grade of “C” or better in Core Curriculum courses in order to satisfy their degree requirements.
Course Number: A four-digit number that identifies each course (example: UNIV 1301). The first number indicates the level of the course; for example, “1” indicates first-year level, “2” indicates sophomore level, et cetera. The second numeral identifies the number of semester credit hours of the course; for example, the “3” in UNIV 1301 identifies the course as three semester credit hours.
Dean: The senior administrator overseeing a college or school.
Dean’s List: An academic honor automatically bestowed upon students each semester they receive a grade point average (GPA) of 3.5 and are attending UTEP full-time.
Decal, parking: University Parking Permit. This decal must either be attached to the front windshield or
Deferment: If a financial aid check is not available by the financial aid tuition payment deadline, a deferment will prevent the recipient’s registration from being canceled.
Degree Plan: A plan that lists the courses a student must successfully complete in order to earn a degree in a particular field of study.
Department: An academic unit representing a field of study. This academic unit determines the courses required for a student to earn a degree in that field of study.
Disciplinary Probation: A set amount of time given to a student during which he/she must maintain a level of behavior which does not violate any of the University rules and regulations. If he/she violates any of the university rules during that time of “probation,” the offense will require a more severe penalty-usually a time of suspension from the university. Probation means that any further violation(s) will be a “second offense” and an increased sanction will be assessed.
Doctoral Degree: The highest degree awarded at UTEP.
Double Major: Concurrently fulfilling the requirements of two approved majors.
Drop/Add: To decrease or increase the number of courses for which a student has registered. There is a period
Elective: Depending on the student’s degree plan, courses of interest that may count towards the total number of hours required for a degree. Students should contact their academic advisor for specific details.
Expulsion: Permanent termination from the
FAFSA: Free Application for Federal Student Aid. More information is available at www.utep.edu/financialaid.
Financial Aid: Any loan, part-time employment, grant or scholarship offered to help a student meet the cost of attaining an education and related expenses.
Financial Aid Award: The amount of aid (money) that is being offered to a student for the academic year.
Fraternities and Sororities: Membership-based student organizations that focus on learning to get along with all types of people, making lifelong friends, participating in a variety of campus activities and becoming involved in other campus organizations.
Full-time student: A full-time student is enrolled for 12 or more credit hours per semester at the undergraduate level and 9 or more credit hours at the graduate level.
Grade Point Average (GPA): A four-point grading system used to measure academic performance. (4.0=A, 3.0=B, 2.0=C, 1.0=D, 0.0=F). The GPA is determined by the total number of points earned divided by the total number of course credits attempted.
Graduate Assistants (G.A.): Graduate students who are hired to teach courses or to assist in the teaching of courses. Graduate Assistants may also have other duties and responsibilities depending on departmental need.
Graduate Record Exam (GRE): A standardized test to continue school at the graduate level.
Harassment: Conduct which creates an intimidating, hostile, offensive working or educational environment.
Hazing: Any action or situation which recklessly or intentionally endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student for the purpose of initiation or admission into an organization. Hazing is illegal in the state of Texas.
Independent Study: An individual course of study a student arranges with an instructor on an individual basis.
Internship: An opportunity for students to gain hands-on experience in their field of study. Generally for one semester. Internships can be
Intramural Sports: Programs designed to allow everyone to participate in a variety of athletic events, from individual events to highly structured competitive leagues for team sports.
Lab: Generally a hands-on course designed for students to apply concepts from a related lecture course. Often a lab is a one-hour semester credit course.
Loans, student: A small or large sum of money that is borrowed for educational attainment. These debts must be paid back.
Major: A student’s primary course of study.
Master’s Degree: A graduate-level degree usually earned after a Bachelor’s Degree.
Minor: A secondary course of study that enables students to develop expertise in an additional approved area of study.
Office Hours: Hours during the week when a professor is available to meet with students outside of class. Professors generally list their office hours on the course syllabus.
Plagiarism: To take ideas or writings from someone else and present them as your own. Plagiarism is a serious offense at any academic institution.
Prerequisite: Courses that are needed before a student can take subsequent classes.
Provisional: Temporary; conditional.
R Thursday, as listed in the Schedule of Classes.
Residence Life Assistant (RLA): A student who has been appointed to live in the residence halls with other resident students. A Residence Life Assistant helps students with any problems they may have and also informs students of the rules and regulations in the residence halls.
Scantron: A form used mainly for multiple choice exams. May be purchased at the UTEP Bookstore.
Schedule of Classes: List of classes offered each semester; contains important deadline information. It is located online under
Semester Credit Hours (SCHs): A unit of measurement for a course. Most undergraduate degree plans consist of a minimum of 120 semester credit hours (also known as credits).
Student Identification Number (SID): Number on your Student ID card.
Syllabus: Typed summary of course requirements and assignments handed out in class or available online at the beginning of each semester.
Teaching Assistants (T.A.): Students that are hired to help assist a professor.
Transcript: A listing of courses attempted and grades earned during the student’s college career.
University President: The administrative leader of the entire university.
Withdrawal: The process of dropping one or more courses registered for in a specific semester.