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  Aug 14, 2020
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Academic Policies (SAW)

Return to SAW CATALOG main page. 


Declaration of Status

Students returning to college or attending Sage After Work for the first time who are uncertain of their major may take up to 9 credits without applying for admission to the College. To enroll for additional credits, students must either matriculate or indicate visiting- student status.

Visiting-Student Status (Non-Matriculation)

Visiting students are those who do not intend to earn a certificate or degree from Sage. They are not eligible for financial aid and are not assigned an academic advisor. Credits accumulated as a visiting student do not necessarily count toward a certificate or degree program. Students must meet and show proof that course prerequisites have been met. Enrollment in certain courses (i.e., Art studios) requires permission of the chair of the department. Non-matriculated students who have previously attempted or completed Sage credits and who have earned below a 2.00 GPA, must have permission of the Academic Dean to register.

Degree-Seeking Status (Matriculation)

A student with degree-seeking status (who is matriculated) may be eligible for financial aid, is able to plan a course of study that meets personal needs and interests, and will be assigned an advisor. Students who are uncertain of their major will be matriculated as undeclared majors and will be assigned advisors who specialize in academic counseling.

Semester Course Load

Full-time status

12 or more credits per semester

Part-time status

fewer than 12 credits per semester

Although all courses taken through Sage After Work are on a per-course basis, students with 6 or more credits per semester are eligible for Federal financial aid. The usual load for most Sage After Work students is two courses, or six credits, per semester.

Registration, Course Planning, and Catalog Year

To plan a curriculum or a year’s course of study, students should use the Catalog effective the year they entered the College or any subsequent Catalog. It is the student’s responsibility to use the appropriate Catalog to outline course requirements and to inform the Registrar, in writing, of any desired change in catalog year. The catalog year may only be advanced; it may not be reversed. Degrees from accredited programs, or degrees that qualify students for certification, may require that students follow requirements subsequent to those in effect when the student matriculated.

A degree audit (program evaluation available in SageAdvisor) will also assist Sage students with their curricular planning. A degree audit is a computer listing of course requirements for the degree program to which a student’s courses (completed, transferred, and in progress) are matched. The catalog year (see above) and the student’s major determine the requirements for graduation and the requirements listed on the degree audit. Students and academic advisors can identify the unfulfilled academic requirements as students progress through their program. Any student who believes that there is an error in his or her Academic Evaluation should bring it to the attention of the Registrar and resolve any discrepancies as early as possible.

As students plan their schedules, they must be sure that they meet the prerequisite requirements for each course. A student must have credit for or be enrolled in all prerequisites before enrolling in any course. A student may obtain permission to override a prerequisite only from the faculty member teaching the course or from the program coordinator in the discipline where the course is offered. This process may not be accomplished through online registration.

Because some courses are not offered every year, a student should consult with an academic advisor immediately upon enrolling and plan a sequence of courses that meets the requirements for the degrees or certificates sought. This plan should be updated each semester. This responsibility rests solely with the Student.

The College reserves the right to add, change, or delete curricular offerings and/or to make curricular refinements.

Student Responsibility

The ultimate responsibility for fulfilling graduation requirements rests with the individual student. In consultation with the faculty advisor, each student reviews his or her academic program to make certain that requirements for the degree are being met satisfactorily. In addition to the requirements listed here, programs may have additional requirements. Each student is responsible for communicating with program advisors to insure that all prerequisite and required coursework and associated activities such as internships, theses and portfolios are identified, scheduled and completed.

Change of Major or Advisor

Students wishing to change their major or advisor should first meet with the assigned faculty advisor to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of such a change. To initiate a change of major, students must submit a completed “Change of Major Form” to the Office of Student Services (Administration Building). To change an academic advisor, students must submit a completed “Change of Student Academic Information Form” to the Academic Advising Office.

Add - Drop - Withdraw from a Course

  • Students may not enter a course after the add/drop period.
  • Courses which the student drops prior to the end of the first five days of classes will not be recorded on his or her academic record.
  • Students who withdraw from a course after the add/drop period will receive a grade of “W” on their academic record for that course.
  • All withdrawals from courses must be initiated by the student through the Registrar’s Office.
  • The last day to withdraw from a course is the last day of the 12th week of classes. The withdrawal process must be completed by or on this date in the Registrar’s Office.
  • The withdrawal deadline for a one-credit mini-course is the end of the ninth class hour.
  • Withdrawal from a course may affect a student’s financial aid.

Withdrawing from the College

Students who wish to withdraw from the College should initiate the process by contacting the Student Life Office (Kahl Campus Center, 518-292-1753). At this time, the official withdrawal form will be processed. Students should follow this procedure whether they are withdrawing in order to transfer to another college or for other personal reasons, and whether the withdrawal is occurring during the semester or between semesters. Withdrawal from the College does not release students from financial obligations incurred during the period of their attendance.

Leave of Absence

Students who need to suspend their studies for a specific period of up to six semesters, including summer sessions, may request a leave of absence by contacting the Student Life Office (Kahl Campus Center, 518-292-1753). A leave of absence is not granted automatically; the student should be prepared to state the reason(s) (e.g.,medical, personal, financial) for requesting the leave and complete the appropriate paperwork. The decision to grant a leave of absence is made by the Dean of Students in consultation with other administrators. Students who are granted formal leaves of absence will remain under the policies and requirements of their original catalog year upon returning to the College. Sage After Work students must complete coursework required for a bachelor’s degree within 10 years of initial entry. Financial adjustments or refunds, if applicable, are made according to the published schedule. Students should also be aware that changing their status may affect their financial aid eligibility.

Inactive Student Status

A matriculated Sage After Work student who does not register for coursework for two academic years, and who has not been granted a leave of absence, will be placed on the College’s roster of inactive students and will be required to reapply for admission. A student readmitted in this manner will be subject to the catalog requirements in force at the time of reentry. Inactive student status does not release the student from educational financial obligations.


Former matriculated students who have been away from Sage After Work for two or more years without a leave of absence must contact the Office of Admission for a readmission/reenrollment application. If any post-secondary institutions (college, university, technical, proprietary school, etc.) were attended while the student was away from The Sage Colleges, official transcripts must be forwarded to the Student Services Office.

Fresh Start Program

A student who is seeking readmission to Sage After Work and has not attended any of The Sage Colleges in four or more years may choose to have all Sage coursework (from the prior attendance) be exempt from the calculation of the grade point average. In choosing this option, the student would receive credit for courses in which a grade of “C-” or better was earned; the grades however, would not be included in the computation of the grade point average (GPA). In effect, students electing the Fresh Start policy will have old coursework treated as “transfer” credit in the calculation of credit for courses, GPA and the determination of eligibility for honors in the respective colleges. The decision to declare a “Fresh Start” must be communicated to the Office of Admission at the time of re-enrollment or during the first term of re-enrollment and can be claimed no more than once in a student’s career at The Sage Colleges. All original grades earned (including those below a C-) remain on the student’s official transcript for record-keeping purposes.

Cross-Registration within The Sage Colleges

In general, undergraduate courses at The Sage Colleges are open to all Russell Sage College, Sage College of Albany, and Sage After Work students. Students wishing to register for a course that is offered at another Sage college may do so via SageAdvisor.  The following exceptions apply:

  • Students have priority in courses offered on their home campus of matriculation;
  • Students have priority in courses required in their major program;
  • And, some courses may be designated as restricted to students meeting specific criteria and not available for open registration.

It is expected that students enroll in required major and general education classes offered on their home campus.  In order to enable students to meet their major program requirements and progress toward graduation, a “visiting” student may be removed from a class roster of a closed course.  Students wishing to request an exception to this policy should put in writing to his/her College Dean indicating that there is a conflict in scheduling or a compelling reason that makes it a hardship to select another course.

Undergraduate Students and Graduate Courses

Students may take advantage of policies that allow acceleration of programs offered at Sage Graduate School.  Undergraduate students in good standing, with a GPA of 3.0 or better, may take graduate courses for undergraduate credit, with advisor approval and permission of the Dean of Sage Graduate School.

Undergraduate students who are seniors and who have a GPA of 3.0 or higher may take two graduate courses for graduate credit, with advisor approval and permission of the Dean of Sage Graduate School. These courses may satisfy undergraduate requirements, or if they are completed beyond the 120 credits required for the baccalaureate degree, may satisfy graduate requirements.

Undergraduate students hoping to enroll in graduate coursework should be aware of the restrictions on the policies that support acceleration. No undergraduate degree can be completed with fewer than 120 credits. The graduate degree must include a minimum of 30 credits beyond the 120 required for the baccalaureate degree. Students in undergraduate programs should seek advisement from their program advisor and from the advisor of the graduate program to ensure that the courses selected apply to the appropriate program.

Online Consortium Courses

The Sage Colleges belong to the Online Consortium of Independent Colleges and Universities (OCICU), an association of regionally-accredited colleges and universities throughout the United States that offer online coursework.  If a matriculated student needs a course that Sage does not currently offer or is required for graduation, it may be possible to cross-register for the course online through one of the OCICU provider schools. Students taking OCICU courses pay their regular Sage tuition, and credits earned appear on the transcript with a grade that figures toward the GPA.  OCICU courses count as credits taken at Sage for purposes of financial aid calculations and residency.

Course registration deadlines, course/term start and end dates, and drop/course withdrawal dates for OCICU courses vary and are based on the specific OCICU provider institution’s policy. The student is responsible for adhering to the OCICU college’s and The Sage Colleges’ registration requirements, as well as The Sage Colleges’ academic calendar.

Interested students should speak with their academic advisor and the Director of Studies, SAW, prior to completing and submitting a Request for Permission to Cross-Register for OCICU Course form to request approval.


Class Attendance

Each faculty member will furnish students with a written attendance policy at the beginning of each semester, stating the objectives of the course and the value of attendance. It will also define “excessive absence” and how that would affect a student’s learning and grade.

Prompt attendance at all academic appointments (classes, lectures, conferences, and examinations) is an essential part of the educational plan for degree programs and is expected of students. In the event of a class absence, it is the student’s responsibility to contact the instructor directly, by phone, voice mail or e-mail. If this is not possible, the student may call the Dean’s Office at (518) 292-1704, and a message will be sent to the instructor. The responsibility for work missed because of absence rests entirely upon the student.

Any student who must be absent from classes for longer than one week due to an emergency situation or extended illness may contact the Student Life Office at (518) 292-1753, and a notice will be sent to the student’s instructor(s) indicating the extenuating circumstances.

Final Examinations

During the final examination period, students are not required to take more than two final examinations per day and may request a make-up time for any additional examination(s) scheduled, if desired. Students requesting a make-up examination must work with all faculty involved, and the Dean, if necessary, to determine which examination will be rescheduled.

Special Academic Courses

Special Topics

Special topics courses may be offered in each discipline under the numbers 248, 348, or 448. Students should consult with the program coordinator or instructor offering the course to obtain a detailed description of that course.

Honors Courses

Each discipline may offer an honors course, seminar, or project as part of the Honors Program.

Online Courses

Sage offers a number of courses online through Moodle, which not only provides flexibility and convenience for students with busy schedules, but also provides an opportunity to explore new avenues of learning. Courses offered online are so noted in the College schedule. Students enrolling in online courses should ensure that they have access to adequate technology, such as a high-speed Internet connection and the Microsoft Office Suite, to complete courses offered in this format.

Blended Courses

Sage offers courses that are taught partially online, thus reducing the number of times students need to appear in a classroom, while increasing the coursework required online. Such classes are common in Summer and in Sage After Work programs. Blended courses provide students with intensive classes and experience with Web-based learning technology.

These courses are comparable to a full-semester class and students must be prepared to complete the required online assignments. Students enrolling in blended courses should ensure that the have access to adequate technology, such as a high-speed Internet connection and the Microsoft Office Suite, to complete courses offered in this format.

Summer and/or Accelerated Programs

Students who wish to accelerate their degree programs may register for summer classes. However, students planning to attend a summer session at another college should do so only after careful consultation with their academic advisors. Courses taken at other colleges might not apply toward a Sage degree unless written permission has been granted in advance. Transfer permission forms are available in the Office of Student Services.

Weekend Courses

Sage offers weekend courses that typically meet Friday nights and Saturdays and Sundays for two or more weekends.

Independent Work

Independent work may take the form of independent study, individual study (regular courses taken independently), or internships. Students must read the “Rules and Regulations of Independent Work,” available in the Office of Student Services, and complete a contract for independent study before enrolling. No student will be awarded more than three credits for a standard course and four credits for a laboratory course taken as an independent or individual study. An Independent Work approval form, available in Student Services, must be signed consecutively by the faculty supervisor, the student’s academic advisor, and the Dean of the College 30 days prior to the beginning of the semester in which the student is registering.

Independent Study

Independent study is defined as academic inquiry carried on outside the usual class/instructor setting. It is a unique course, not offered by the college, but created by a student in collaboration with a faculty member. The credit awarded is variable. To initiate independent study, a student must describe the rationale, objectives and methodology of the project, and a faculty member must agree to supervise the project. The method of evaluation for the project must be agreed upon and approved by the faculty member’s department chair and the Dean. If the project is approved, the student works independently to complete it, meeting several times during the semester with the faculty supervisor for discussion and evaluation of the student’s progress.

An independent study in any of the laboratory sciences should be considered only if the student is exceptionally well prepared. Students are limited to one independent study at a time. Only the successful completion of the project will permit approval of an additional independent study.

Individual Study

A student may apply to take a regular course independently (designated as “Individual Study”) when a course is required for his or her program but will not be offered by the scheduled date of the student’s graduation. This request must be approved by the appropriate program coordinator. The student must explain why the course must be taken, and a qualified member of the faculty must agree to supervise the study and must explain what formal work such as research papers or examinations the student must submit for evaluation.


An internship is defined as a credit-bearing work experience in the field, which fosters the development of applied skills and typically increases professional competence, links theory and practice, and offers opportunities for career exploration. Academic programs at Sage offer students a broad range of opportunities for off-campus internships and field experiences that connect classroom learning with practical experience related to their academic program of study. These resources enable students to explore and clarify academic and career goals, develop new skills, and prepare for the changing workforce. Internships, clinical courses, cooperative education work experiences, community service, field placements, informational interviewing, and job shadowing placements are available in businesses, community agencies, schools, legislative and governmental offices, graphic and interior design firms, museums, and other organizations in areas of interest to Sage students.

Sage After Work students are required to complete an internship or an approved experiential-based learning opportunity. To be eligible for internship credits, students must have accumulated a minimum of 45 credits and have successfully completed at least 3 credits at Sage with a grade of “C” or better. Internships carrying academic credit must be planned with an advisor, and an internship contract must be completed and filed in the Office of Student Services. Credits awarded for an internship are measured by a student learning contract with the student’s internship advisor according to program guidelines.

The Career Planning Office has listings of internship opportunities, job resources, and access to local and national job banks. Career counselors are available to help with career assessment, guidance, and placement.

Contracts for Independent Work

(Independent Study, Individual Study or Internships)

The terms and conditions for all independent work are set down in a contract, which requires the written agreement of the student, the field supervisor; the faculty advisor, department chairperson or program coordinator, and the Dean. Contract forms are available in the Office of Student Services. The completed contract must be on file with the Registrar’s office before the student registers for the independent work.

Credit Ceilings for Independent Work

In general, no more than 15 credits of independent work, i.e. any combination of independent study, courses taken independently and/or internship, may be counted toward a baccalaureate degree. There are, however, two exceptions to this ceiling:

  • Students who are enrolled in a dual major or who are taking a single major along with a formal minor or concentration in a different discipline may take up to 18 credits of independent work;
  • Students who take a single internship worth 15 credits may take an additional 3 credit independent study.
  • The ceiling for any such combination, which may be counted toward the degree, is 21 credits.

Credit for Prior Learning

Degree-seeking baccalaureate students may be eligible to receive credit for prior college-level learning achieved through such life experience as community service, employer or armed service-sponsored training, self education, relevant work experiences, or artistic development. The basis for granting credit is a portfolio of documentation prepared by the student under the guidance of the coordinator of Prior Learning. A maximum total of 30 undergraduate credits may be granted, with the following limits by category:

Academic Major = 9 credits maximum
General Education = 9 credits maximum
Electives = 30 credits maximum

To be eligible for experiential learning credit, students must first have completed at least 3 credit hours with a grade of “C” or better, and be enrolled for an additional 3 credits. SAW students are required to take a minimum of 30 hours in regular classroom work while at Sage. Students are not eligible for the credit for prior learning program in their anticipated term of completion (i.e., graduation term). Consult the section on Tuition and Fees  for corresponding charges.

For additional information on portfolio development and other experiential learning requirements, contact the Coordinator of Prior Learning at (518) 292-1811.

Academic Adjustments for Students with Disabilities

Academic requirements must be modified, on a case-by-case basis, to afford qualified handicapped students and applicants an equal education opportunity. Students seeking accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act should contact the Office of Disability Services at (518) 292-8624.


Credits Among Schools at The Sage Colleges

Undergraduate credit at The Sage Colleges is applied equally to Sage College of Albany, Sage After Work and Russell Sage College. Credit is not “transferred” between the Colleges. Undergraduate credit earned at any of The Sage Colleges is applied toward the completion of baccalaureate degree requirements, the calculation of cumulative grade points, and the determination of eligibility for honors in the respective colleges.

Classification of Students

A student’s academic classification (class standing) is determined by the number of credits earned toward a bachelor’s degree.

Class Standing









87 or more

Substitution/Waiver Policy

In some cases, students may substitute or waive a course required for their degree program. The student must complete a Substitution/Waiver Form, have it signed by the department chairperson/program coordinator for the course that is being substituted, and return the form to the Office of Student Services. For example, substitution of a Math course requires the approval of the Math Department Chair. For general education requirements that are not department-specific (e.g., interdisciplinary), the decision rests with the Associate Dean of Academic Advising. This approval may be secured in writing or via e-mail from the Chairperson/Coordinator or Dean and must be attached to the Substitution/Waiver Form before it is returned to the Office of Student Services.

In lieu of the Substitution/Waiver Form, substitution/waivers may be done via e-mail, but MUST contain the following:

  • Chairperson/program coordinator must be copied
  • Student must be copied
  • Required course
  • Course being waived
  • Course being substituted
  • Whether or not the course is a transfer course and from what institution
  • Reason/justification
  • Statement indicating that “Copying the student indicates the student’s awareness of the substitution.”

Transfer of Credit from Other Institutions

Undergraduate students must complete at least half their major and at least 30 credit hours in residence at Sage. Students must satisfy general education as well as major requirements and must maintain satisfactory standards of scholarship to be eligible for graduation.

The Office of the Registrar evaluates credit earned at other accredited institutions prior to admission. To be eligible for credit consideration at The Sage Colleges, final transcripts from all post-secondary institutions (college, university, technical, proprietary school, etc.) previously attended must be received before students have completed their first semester. Evaluation is conducted on a course-by-course basis for all work in which grades of “C-” or above have been earned. Up to 9 credit hours may be awarded for courses that are not comparable to courses offered at The Sage Colleges. Course grades from other institutions do not transfer; only credits do.

Transfer of Credit after Matriculation

An undergraduate student who intends to transfer credit from another institution after matriculation at Sage must file with the Registrar a statement of approval for the course to be taken, signed by the major advisor. No credit will be transferred without prior approval, nor will credit transfer for coursework with a grade below a “C-”. Course grades from other institutions do not transfer; only credits do. Transfer credit forms are available in the Office of Student Services or the Office of Academic Advisement.

A maximum of 66 transfer credits from a 2-year college (or 90 credits from a combination of 2- and 4-year colleges) are applicable toward a baccalaureate degree at Sage After Work. Sage After Work (SAW) Students must complete half their major requirements and 30 credits in residence at Sage.

Before registering elsewhere to take a required course normally offered at Sage, the student must obtain consent of his or her academic advisor(s) and verification of course equivalence from the coordinator of the program in which the course would be offered at Sage. Students may petition the Dean of the College for a waiver of any part of this policy. Such a request requires the consent of the academic advisor(s) and verification of course equivalence, if any, from the coordinator of the program in which the course would be offered at Sage.

Accredited Proprietary Schools

Students who have achieved a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average (4.0 system) for work done at a proprietary school accredited by the Association of Independent Colleges and Schools can petition for transfer credit according to two-year college guidelines. Most credit awarded will be applicable to electives and general education requirements, with decisions on major field credit resting with the academic department.

Non-Accredited Institutions

Students transferring from non-accredited schools may petition for credit evaluation after they have attended Sage for two consecutive semesters and earned a minimum 2.0 cumulative grade point average (2.2 in the major field).

Armed Services Training

Training on military installations may lead to credit awarded on the basis of guidelines from the “Guide to Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services.”

Non-Collegiate Programs

Credit may be available for courses sponsored by organizations which are recommended in the “Guide to Educational Programs in Non-Collegiate Organizations” of the State University of New York.

College Credit by Examination

Sage provides students with information on opportunities to obtain college credit in a variety of subjects through several testing programs. These include the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), Excelsior College Examinations (ECE), New York University Foreign Language Proficiency Testing Program (NYUFLP), and Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES). For more information, see below or contact the Office of Academic Advising.

  1. Up to 66 credits received through standardized examinations (CLEP, ECE, NYUFLP, and DANTES) may be applied toward a bachelor’s degree. Distribution of the credits within the degree plan is determined by the academic advisor in consultation with the student.
  2. Credit by examination does not count toward Sage’s graduation residency requirement.
  3. Credit earned by examination at other accredited colleges and universities may be transferred through transcripts to Sage according to the above guidelines. However, scores must meet Sage’s current minimum passing levels in order for the credit to be accepted.
  4. All scores for credit by examination must be received by Sage one semester prior to graduation. Note that it takes several weeks for results to be sent from testing agencies, so students must complete all standardized testing well before the final semester.
  5. Although students may take examinations prior to or after coming to Sage, the college will not accept the credit indicated until after admission as a degree student (matriculation). After matriculation, students should consult with their academic advisors before taking any standardized tests to determine the appropriateness of the credit in their degree programs.
  6. Consult with the Office of Academic Advising for information on these examinations, including the fees charged and the exam code number for the Sage College the student is attending (required for DANTES, CLEP, and Excelsior exams).

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Credit and/or placement is possible for qualifying scores from the College Level Examination Program. At Sage After Work, transfer credit is awarded for CLEP scores of 50 or higher. Normally, credit is awarded for acceptable scores in subject examinations and is applied to general education and elective requirements. For information about the CLEP program, visit, or contact the Registrar with questions. The following table specifies appropriate exams and credit available.

Click here to view  table.

Excelsior College Examinations (formerly CPE)

Credits from this program, sponsored by Excelsior College, are available in the same manner as for CLEP. A maximum of 60 credits hours toward baccalaureate degrees and 30 toward associate degrees are aggregates for a combination of the two exams. Policies on ECE are as follows:

New York University Foreign Language Proficiency Exams (NYUFLP)

Sage is able to accept more than 50 different foreign language exams. Students may select a 12-point version (up to 12 lower division credits) or a 16-point version (up to 12 lower and 4 upper division credits). For a complete list of test languages and registration information, contact the Office of Academic Advisement and Career Planning.

International Baccalaureate (IB)

International Baccalaureate diplomas will generally be treated as certificates for advanced placement and/or general elective transfer credit, with final determination made by individual academic departments. For more Information please contact the Student Services Office, Assistant Director of Transfer Evaluation at (518) 292-1781 or [email protected].

Evaluation of Academic Work

Grading Policy

At the end of each term, the standing of a student in each of his/her courses is reported by the instructor to the Registrar and is entered on the student’s permanent record. Standing is expressed using a grading system with plus and minus designations, which is also used to determine quality points for calculating grade point averages. Sage uses the following grading system:


A = Excellent
B = Good
C = Satisfactory
D = Passing
F = Failure

I (grade) = Incomplete

A grade of Incomplete (“I”) may be awarded at the discretion of the faculty member if a student is unable to complete all the work for a course due to illness or a comparable emergency. In order for a grade of “I” to be granted, a student should have completed most of the work for the course in the opinion of the instructor. If an “I” is granted, the student has the right to complete the work by the date specified by the faculty member, not to exceed the end of the eighth week of the following semester. However, students who are pending an academic action of academic warning, academic review, or academic suspension must complete all work prior to the beginning of the next fall or spring semester. The student will not be allowed to re-register for the course (either for credit or audit) in a subsequent semester until the Incomplete is removed. It is the responsibility of the student to be aware of her/his grades in all classes prior to requesting an Incomplete. Should she/he be at risk of being placed on probation or suspended, arranging for an Incomplete may result in an earlier deadline than anticipated. Faculty are not obliged to offer extensions under these circumstances.

Prior to requesting an Incomplete, the student and faculty member should write up and sign an agreement using the Incomplete/Extension Request Form, clearly identifying the specific reasons for the request, the work to be completed, and the deadline for the submission of the work. Upon completion of the work, the faculty member files a Grade Change Form with the Office of Student Services in order to convert the “I” grade to an appropriate letter grade. If the faculty member does not change the Incomplete grade by the end of the eighth week of the next semester (first Friday in November for spring and summer incompletes, last Friday in March for fall incompletes), the Registrar will replace the grade of “I” with the grade “F” unless the instructor has stipulated another grade to the Registrar’s Office. Any agreed-upon extension of time to the deadline must be reported to the Office of Student Services via the timely submission of another Incomplete/Extension Request Form.

P = Passing

Indicates that the student has passed the course.

W = Withdrawal

This grade can only be assigned by the Registrar’s Office, when a student officially withdraws from a class.

RP = Research in Progress

In designated courses such as theses, research projects, honors projects, and senior seminars and projects, incomplete work may be assigned a grade of “RP.” “RP” grades indicate that the initial expectation was that the work to be evaluated normally requires more than one semester. The “RP” grade may not be used in place of an incomplete (“I” grade) for any course which students are normally expected to complete within the original semester. Within one year from the time the “RP” grade is assigned, students must complete a course for which the “RP” grade was given. A student whose research requires longer than one year may request an extension of the “RP” for up to one additional year. The program coordinator may grant the request for an extension of the “RP” grade, depending on the degree of completion of the project. The extension will be granted only if there has been substantial progress. Failure to complete the work within the timeframe described above will result in the conversion of the grade from “RP” to “F.”

Registrar’s Notes

(on the transcript but not grades)

R - The “R” designation is limited to developmental non-credit courses. The student must re-register for the course to receive a grade other than an “R.”

MC - Indicates that the student has successfully met the competency in Mathematics and English language skills. (Associate degree only).

Calculating Grade Point Average (GPA)

To determine a student’s grade point average (GPA), Sage uses the following system of quality points:

A+ = 4.0 C = 2.0
A = 4.0 C- = 1.7
A- = 3.7 D+ = 1.3
B+ = 3.3 D = 1.0
B = 3.0 D- = 0.7
B- = 2.7 F = 0.0
C+ = 2.3    

(I, P, and W grade designations not calculated in grade point average.)

Thus a bachelor’s degree student with one “A-,” two “Bs,” one “C+,” and one “D+” would have the following grade point average:

A- 3 credit course x 3.7 quality points = 11.1  
B 3 credit course x 3.0 quality points = 9.0  
B 4 credit course x 3.0 quality points = 12.0  
C+ 3 credit course x 2.3 quality points = 6.9  
D+ 3 credit course x 1.3 quality points = 3.9  
  16 credits   42.9  
GPA = Total Quality Points = 42.9 = 2.68
  Total Credits Accepted   16.0  

The student completed five courses for 16 credits with a GPA of 2.68.

Pass/Fail (P/F)

The Pass/Fail (P/F) option should encourage students to select courses offered by departments outside their major area and requirements. The policies governing the use of the P/F option apply only to those courses that can be elected P/F. Courses offered only on a P/F basis are excluded from the limitations. Faculty do not know which student(s) elect a course P/F; they will record a letter grade and the Registrar will assign the appropriate grade. Grades above “F” are considered passing.

  1. Students completing 120 credits at Sage may take four courses P/F; the number is proportionately lower for associate degree and transfer students.
  2. These courses may not be major requirements, minor requirements including required support courses in a major program
  3. Election must be made at the time of registration, up to and including the last day to add or withdraw from a course.
  4. When a student withdraws from a course elected P/F within the normal withdrawal period, it will not count toward the P/F maximum.
  5. When registering for a P/F course, students may choose to have a letter grade recorded under certain specified conditions by filling out the appropriate section of the P/F form. The student must complete this section at the time of registration. Note: Courses taken for a letter grade under this option still count as courses taken P/F.
  6. To be considered for Dean’s List in a given regular term, a student must take a minimum of 12 credit hours on a letter-grade basis that year.

NOTE: If the student is not successful in a course that he/she selects as Pass/Fail and receives a final grade of ‘F’, the F grade is listed on the official transcript and is averaged in to the student’s cumulative GPA.


Students who wish to audit a course must have the instructor’s permission to do so and will be permitted to audit a course on a space-available basis, limited to not more than 10 percent of class enrollment. They are not required to submit credentials if they intend only to audit, but they must declare their request to audit a course at registration or no later than the end of the Add-Drop period. Auditors pay all fees and partial tuition (see Section on Tuition, Fees and Deposits for tuition charges).

Repeat Course Policy

Students are permitted to retake any Sage course at the same College where they initially took the course. Credits and grade points for the first grade will be deleted from the cumulative record, while the grade itself will remain on the transcript and the repeat noted. The course information will be listed in the usual manner the second time it appears on the transcript. Generally, the course should be repeated the next time it is offered. However, it may be repeated any time prior to graduation. No matter which grade is higher, the most recent grade counts in calculating the cumulative grade point average.

In situations where a student has repeated a course previously taken for a letter grade at Sage, the grade replacement may not be used to remove the academic warning or term probation from the semester in which the course was previously taken.

Students may repeat no more than three previously passed courses while enrolled in a program leading to a bachelor’s degree. There is no specific limit on the number of courses a student may repeat for a course in which they received an F, or W.

Students cannot repeat using the P/F option to replace a grade. However, a student who has failed a course using the P/F option may elect to retake the course for either a grade or a P/F option. The retaken P/F course counts as an additional use of the P/F option.

All course repeats must be taken at Sage. In the event that a student’s program of study is jeopardized due to a lack of course offerings at Sage, students may seek approval of their academic advisor and the director of studies to take the course through the Online Consortium of Colleges and Universities (OCICU) or the program coordinator/department chair to take the course at another institution. The sequence of certain programs may not allow multiple retakes. Students should consult their advisor or program coordinator/department chair for further details. Students should seek approval of their advisor prior to pre-registration, as the sequence of their program may be affected by the need to retake a course. Please note that with the exception of consortium courses, grades from other institutions do not transfer; only credits do.

Repetition of coursework for which credit has been granted may jeopardize financial aid eligibility. It is the student’s responsibility to understand his/her financial aid situation and the possible consequences of repeating courses. Students with questions regarding the impact of course repeats on financial aid should consult the Office of Student Services.

General Education

The Liberal and Interdisciplinary Foundation for Excellence, or LIFE curriculum, is the cornerstone of general education in Sage College of Albany’s bachelor’s degree programs. SCA is committed to the belief that all graduates should possess the skills—as well as the breadth of knowledge and the experiences—necessary for lifelong learning in a changing world. The LIFE curriculum provides students with a foundation in the liberal arts and sciences to broaden their perspective.

The LIFE curriculum at SCA is integrated over the four years of study to so that students:

  • select a foundation in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences that will support the commitment to life-long learning;
  • acquire skills in problem recognition and creative problem-solving, persistence, and negotiation that provide an underlying basis for success in the academy, the workplace and the larger community;
  • broaden their perspective of different disciplines by being introduced to alternative ways of perceiving, learning, analyzing, and knowing;
  • explore the connection between theoretical knowledge and the application of knowledge;
  • develop reasoning abilities; writing, reading, and computational abilities; and the abilities to apply, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate information within an interdisciplinary context.
  • develop diverse cultural and historical perspectives as well as effective citizenship responsibilities.
SAW General Education Requirements, 2002 to present Credits
HUM 112 Language and Community (English Composition course) 3 credits
Humanities 6 credits
Social Science 6 credits
Science 6 credits
Mathematics, MAT 110 or higher (or ECO 215/PSY 207) 3 credits
Technology Competency 0-3 credits
ITD 3XX LIFE Interdisciplinary Seminar 3 credits
Experiential-Based Learning - in the major (3 credits)
Senior Project/Capstone Seminar - in the major (3 credits)


Academic Standards

Academic Integrity

Sage After Work students are expected to comply with the stipulations set forth in the “Statement of Academic Honesty,” which is included in the The Student Handbook, available online at

Academic Dishonesty/Misconduct

Academic dishonesty and misconduct violate the essential mission of an academic institution and will not be tolerated at The Sage Colleges in any of its forms. Academic dishonesty and misconduct include cheating, plagiarism, multiple submissions, complicity in academic dishonesty/misconduct, abuse of materials or alteration of records. Following are several definitions and examples of academic dishonesty. The examples are provided as samples of various types of academic dishonesty, but are not intended to be an exhaustive or exclusive list.

  • Academic Fraud = The alteration of documentation relating to the grading process (e.g., changing exam solutions to negotiate for a higher grade or tampering with an instructor’s grade book).
  • Collaboration = Deliberate facilitation of academic dishonesty in any form (e.g., allowing another student to observe an exam paper or recycle one’s old term paper).
  • Copying = Obtaining information pertaining to an exam question by deliberately observing the paper of another student.
  • Cribbing = Use or attempt to use prohibited materials, information, or study aids in an academic exercise.
  • Fabrication = Unauthorized falsification or invention of any information in an academic exercise (e.g., use of a purchased term paper; falsifying lab records).
  • Plagiarism = Representing the work or words of another as one’s own through deliberate omission of acknowledgment or reference.
  • Sabotage = Destruction of another student’s work related to an academic exercise (e.g., destroying a model, lab experiment, computer program, or term paper developed by another student).
  • Substitution = Using a proxy, or acting as a proxy, in any academic exercise.

Academic Monitoring

Student academic progress is monitored at several levels: (a) by the Registrar’s Office through a degree or program audit; (b) by the student’s academic advisor; (c) by the program coordinator of the program in which the student is enrolled; (d) by the Academic Standards Committee; and (e) by the students themselves.

Academic Actions

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Sage After Work students making satisfactory academic progress toward a degree (defined also as good academic standing) must achieve cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of at least 2.0.

Student records are scrutinized for satisfactory progress by the SCA Academic Standards Committee at the end of each fall and spring semester. Students with academic difficulties may receive a Letter of Concern or a Letter of Academic Action, as appropriate, from the Registrar and/or Academic Advising Office on behalf of the Committee.The Committee may place the student on Academic Warning, ask the student to submit to an Academic Review, issue an Academic Suspension, or issue an Academic Dismissal. Students wishing to appeal the decision of the Academic Standards Committee must put their appeal in writing to the Dean of the College.

Academic Warning

A Sage After Work student is placed on academic warning when the CGPA drops below 2.00 based on the last 12 attempted credits. A Sage After Work student on academic warning may not carry more than 6-12 credit hours or the equivalent, per the SCA Academic Standards Committee.

Students must complete 75 percent of credits if registered full-time and 100 percent if registered part-time. A student is removed from academic warning and returned to good academic standing by achieving a CGPA of 2.00. A student who has received an incomplete grade that converted to a failing grade from a previous semester than the one under review may receive retroactive academic warning or suspension.

Semester Warning

A matriculated Sage After Work student is placed on semester warning when the student has attended the College for more than one term and the CGPA is over a 2.00 but the current term grade point average is 1.30 or lower. A student on semester warning may not carry more than 12 credit hours or the equivalent. If a Sage After Work student is placed on semester warning for two or more terms, the Academic Standards Committee may impose a reduction in registered credits for the next term.

Academic Review

A student is subject to academic review (“pending academic suspension”) when the cumulative grade point average (CGPA) remains below 2.00 in the succeeding semester or when the CGPA initially drops below 1.75. The committee decides whether the student is retained on academic warning (“probation”) or academically suspended. If retained on academic warning, full-time or part-time, the student must comply with the academic warning policy as outlined above and/or the Committee may require additional specific conditions be met.

A student who is academically suspended may apply for readmission after the passage of one regular semester.

Academic Suspension

If a student matriculated in Sage After Work accumulates three semesters on academic warning followed by another unsatisfactory CGPA, he/she will receive one-semester suspension. Or, if a student has accumulated 0 credits in a semester, the student will be academically suspended. However, suspension may not occur if the Academic Standards Committee sees evidence of an encouraging rate of improvement in the student’s work despite the technical deficiency. A student is removed from academic warning and returned to good academic standing by achieving a CGPA of 2.00.

A student who receives an incomplete grade in one or more courses and is pending academic suspension from the college will have a final deadline for completion of work no later than five business days before the start of the next term. If the remaining coursework is not completed or the final course grade does not improve the CGPA, the student will be suspended. A student who has received an incomplete grade that converted to a Failing grade from a previous semester than the one under review may receive retroactive academic warning or suspension.

Suspension is defined as a separation from the College for a stated period (one or more semesters). Suspended students may appeal to the Dean of the College within the period stipulated in the Letter of Academic Action; the Dean consults with the Academic Standards Committee before making a decision. If no appeal is made or if an appeal is unsuccessful, suspended students may request reinstatement after their suspension by writing to the Dean of the College.

A student who has been suspended may not apply for reenrollment or take courses through any of the Sage Colleges until at least one semester has passed.

Academic Dismissal

Academic dismissal is defined as a complete and permanent severance from the College for reasons of academic deficiency. The Academic Standards Committee may impose academic dismissal after two or more one-semester academic suspensions. A student who has been dismissed may not take classes at any of the Sage Colleges.

Any dismissal from the college for non-academic reasons is noted as an “administrative dismissal.” To be readmitted to the college, the student is required to reactivate his/her file through the Office of Admission. An administrative dismissal may affect a student’s financial aid.


Matriculated undergraduate students who have been away from The Sage Colleges due to a leave of absence, withdrawal or suspension should contact the admission office to confirm what return procedures and policies apply. A readmission application and interview and/or the approval of the Registrar and the Director of Academic Advising may be required.

Students who have been academically suspended may not apply for reenrollment until at least one semester has passed. The readmission deadline for the fall semester is August 20; the deadline for the spring semester is January 7.

A readmitted student who earned a grade point average of less than 2.0 (or who has accrued no credits at the time of readmission) must earn a GPA of 2.0 for the semester or be academically suspended at the end of that semester. For a full-time student, this GPA must be based on the completion of at least 75 percent of the courses in which the student is enrolled. The GPA for a student registered for three courses or less must be based on the completion of all courses in which the student is enrolled. A student wishing to be readmitted to the college with a GPA below 2.0 will be required to complete an interview with the Director of Academic Advising

If a student has been put on academic suspension more than once, he or she cannot reenroll at Sage without demonstrating “C” work in at least 9 credit hours (2.0 in all courses) at another institution. If the student attends any other post-secondary institutions (college, university, technical, proprietary school, etc.) while away from Sage, official transcripts should be forwarded to the Office of Admission at Sage.

Appeals of Academic Issues

In the event that a student has a complaint involving a faculty member or wishes to question a grade, the student should follow the procedures listed below:

  • Meet with the instructor involved. In the best interests of both parties, resolution ideally should be reached at this stage.
  • Meet with the instructor’s department chairperson or program coordinator if resolution is not reached between the student and instructor.
  • Meet with the Dean of the College, only in the event that the student feels procedures were not followed.

The Provost is the final decision-making authority.

Change of Final Grade

Final grades recorded by the faculty are permanent and remain so with the exception of “I” (Incomplete). An Incomplete grade must be converted to a letter grade by the end of the eighth week of the subsequent semester unless an extension has been granted. If a letter grade has not been submitted by the instructor by this time, the “I” will convert to an “F” and will be appropriately calculated into the student’s CGPA.

Except for mathematical errors, the registrar may alter final grades only after the Dean of the College has granted approval. The instructor must initiate corrections by submitting a grade change form with the explanation for the change of grade to the Dean of the College.

A student who believes he/she has been penalized unjustly in the final grade received should follow the appeals procedure outlined above.

Honors and Graduation

Dean’s List

Students who are matriculated in a Sage After Work degree or certificate program are eligible for the Dean’s List if they have completed at least four courses (12 credits) over one to three terms (including summer) in which a grade point average of 3.3 or above is achieved, with no grade below a “C” or of “Incomplete.” A student with an incomplete may petition the Dean’s Office for recognition after the incomplete is satisfied. The Dean’s List will be published twice per year after the close of the fall and spring terms.

Honor Societies

Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society

The 176th chapter of the Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society was installed at Sage in 1975. Students in any major may be elected to the society in the spring term of the junior or senior year. To be eligible for election, juniors must rank in the upper 2 to 3 percent and seniors in the upper 10 percent of their class, with a cumulative average of 3.5 or better.  An induction ceremony is held each spring.

Alpha Sigma Lambda Honor Society

At Sage, Alpha Sigma Lambda, a national honor society for continuing education students, recognizes the special achievements of adults enrolled in Sage After Work who achieve academic excellence while adroitly balancing the competing interests of home, work, school, and community. Through leadership born of effort, both scholastically and fraternally, Alpha Sigma Lambda inspires its candidates to give of their strengths to their fellow students and communities through their academic achievements.

Matriculated Sage After Work bachelor’s degree candidates who qualify may be invited to become members of Alpha Sigma Lambda Gamma Nu Chapter. Members must rank in the highest 10 percent of those students and must satisfy the following requirements:

  • Matriculation in a bachelor’s degree program in Sage After Work
  • At least 24 credits in the Sage After Work program (with permission, some of these credits may be from the other Sage Colleges if taken after matriculating in Sage After Work)
  • At least 15 semester hours of a student’s total hours should consist of credits in liberal arts and sciences
  • Experiential learning credits are not graded and may not be used

Each spring, Sage After Work inducts new members from among selected outstanding students. For more information, contact the Office of Academic Advisement at (518) 292-1719.

Academic Honors

Sage After Work awards Latin, project and program honors to qualifying graduates.

Latin Honors

Students must have at least 45 credit hours at Sage above the 100-level and earn a GPA of at least 3.5 for all Sage credits. The baccalaureate degree is awarded as follows:

Cum Laude: Sage GPA between 3.5 and 3.69
Magna Cum Laude: Sage GPA of 3.7 to 3.89
Summa Cum Laude: Sage GPA 3.9 or higher

Program Honors

Students who have attained a high degree of excellence in the work of their respective major subjects, and who have in addition satisfied the requirements prescribed by the department concerned, are awarded program honors. The GPA requirement for program honors is 3.5 based on all required courses for a major program, including support courses. Electives are excluded.


The Sage Colleges confers degrees three times each year: in August, December and May. However, a Commencement ceremony is held only in May. Students become candidates for graduation upon the filing of a completed Graduation Application with the filing fee and submitted to the Office of Student Services. The filing deadlines are:

February 15 for May degree conferral
June 1 for August degree conferral
October 1 for December degree conferral

For conferral of a degree in May, August or December, students must have met all degree requirements by the end of the semester or summer session preceding degree conferral date. Students enrolled in internships, externships, clinicals, student teaching, practica, or courses at another institution which are scheduled to end within one month after conferral date must supply the Office of Student Services with documentation of satisfactory progress (a letter from the instructor on the college’s letterhead indicating an average of C- or better) to be eligible for degree conferral and receipt of a final transcript.

Participation in Commencement Exercises

For participation in Commencement, students must meet the requirements for graduation by Commencement day, or be within two courses (including internships, externships, clinicals, student teaching or practica) of completing requirements and enrolled in the subsequent summer session(s) or semester at The Sage Colleges. Students with up to two courses worth of Incomplete and/or Research in Progress grades from the semester prior to Commencement day are normally eligible to participate in Commencement but are not eligible for degree conferral. The Dean of the College will consider petitions for exceptions to the above regulations, but they will be granted for only the most compelling reasons. The Dean of the College will routinely report the reasons for any exceptions made to the Academic Standards Committee.