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  Sep 20, 2020
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Academic Policy - Coursework


Class Attendance

Much of the education that occurs in the classroom (including labs and studios) at Sage College of Albany cannot be gained in any other way. 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 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 with the student.

Any student who must be absent from classes for longer than one week due to an emergency situation or extended illness (proper documentation required) must 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. Students requesting a make-up examination must work with all faculty involved, and the Dean, if necessary, to determine which examination will be rescheduled.

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. Complete information on these policies and procedures for requesting these adjustments may be found in Campus Policies . For more information please contact the Coordinator of Disability Services at (518) 292-8624.

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.

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 may 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 (through Sage After Work) that typically meet Friday nights and Saturdays and Sundays for two or more consecutive 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. Generally, independent work is not available to freshmen or first-semester transfer students. No student will be awarded more than three credits for a standard course or four credits for a laboratory course taken as an independent or individual study. An Independent Work approval form, available in the Office of Student Services, must be completed and signed by the faculty supervisor, the student’s academic advisor, and the Dean of the College 30 days before the beginning of the semester for 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 of the College. 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 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 the student must submit for evaluation (e.g., examinations and research papers).


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. Sage offers 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.

SCA students who have accumulated a minimum of 45 credits, who have successfully completed at least three credits at Sage with a grade of “C” or better and have permission of their faculty advisor are eligible. Sage College of Albany students are required to complete an internship or an approved experiential-based learning opportunity to be eligible for graduation. 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. Three credits are normally awarded for internships.

The Career Planning Center has listings of internship opportunities, job resources, an employer database, alumni career networks, links to job sites on the Internet, and access to local and national job banks. Career counselors are also available to help with career assessment, internship materials, guidance and placement.

Contracts for Independent Work

The terms and conditions for all independent work are set forth in a contract, which requires the written agreement of the student, the field supervisor - if applicable, the faculty advisor, department chairperson or program coordinator, and the Dean of the College. 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 begins the independent work.

Credit Ceilings or Limits 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.


A minor is defined as between 18‑20 credits of course work consisting of at least five one semester courses taken in a program sponsored by an Academic Department and approved by the College Curriculum Committee.  A student may not major and minor in the same discipline.

Minors may be declared only after the student has successfully completed at least one‑semester course in the discipline.  Minors are normally declared at the end of the sophomore year, but must be declared before the second semester of the senior year or before 105 credit hours whichever comes later.  The sponsoring department(s) must provide academic advisement for each minor. Minors will be recorded in the student’s transcript only if the average cum for the minor is 2.2.  The limit of transfer credits for minors cannot exceed half the credits in that minor.

Study Abroad

In our increasingly globalized and interdependent world, sensitivity to cultural differences and an understanding of the value and importance of multicultural perspectives are fostered in various ways at The Sage Colleges. Opportunities for study abroad and structured travel in other countries support these objectives. International study promotes rapid personal and intellectual growth, widens horizons, and can lead the way to unexpected career options.

Sage sponsors a number of international study opportunities and is affiliated with other colleges and universities for additional opportunities. Each year, Sage faculty offer a variety of foreign travel courses or tours. Programs in recent years have included France, Belgium, the Netherlands, England, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Puerto Rico, and Vietnam. Students enrolled in sponsored or affiliated programs pay their tuition and room-and-board fees to Sage. Students may be eligible to continue receiving financial aid during their time away from campus. Books, personal expenses, and travel costs are not covered.

Early planning for study abroad is essential. Students should consult with the Director of Cultural Enrichment and Diversity to begin the process for studying abroad.  Studying abroad is available to students with a 2.75 GPA or higher. Credit earned in study abroad while studying abroad on an affiliate program which the student has received approval will be counted as Sage credit and will factor into the student’s overall GPA.  The Director of Cultural Enrichment and Diversity is also available for assistance should a student decide to enroll in a program not sponsored by or affiliated with Sage. Non-affiliate coursework is subject to the same policies as “Transfer Credit After Matriculation”.  No grade below a “C-” will be accepted for transfer.

All students must meet with the Director of Cultural Enrichment and Diversity in order to participate in a study abroad program. Inquiries about study abroad should be directed to Sabrina McGinty, Director of Cultural Enrichment & Diversity, Kahl Campus Center Lower Level, (518) 292-7747, [email protected]