Academic Regulations

Olin's Code of Conduct

The Olin Business School is a community of individuals with diverse backgrounds and interests who share certain fundamental goals. Primary among these goals is the creation and maintenance of an atmosphere conducive to learning and personal growth for everyone in the community. Becoming a member of the Olin community is a privilege that brings certain responsibilities and expectations. The success of Olin in attaining its goals and in maintaining its reputation of academic excellence depends on the willingness of its members, both collectively and individually, to meet their responsibilities. It is imperative that all individuals associated with Olin conduct themselves with the utmost integrity in all aspects of their lives, both on and off campus. Learn more about Olin’s Code of Conduct by reviewing the Olin Business School Conduct Code.


Olin Business School allows each instructor of a course to decide how many absences the student may have and still pass the course. The Olin Business School expects faculty to give reasonable consideration to unavoidable absences and to the feasibility of making up work that has been missed. Students are expected to explain to their instructors the reasons for any absences and to discuss with them the possibility of making up missed assignments.


BSBA students must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 units to a maximum of 21 units each semester. Olin undergraduates will be assessed a full-time tuition charge for their course of study through eight semesters of enrollment.

Units and Grades

A unit is a measure of quantity given for one hour of lecture or recitation course a week for one semester. A grade point is a measure of the quality of work done in the course. Grade points per course are calculated by multiplying the number of units of a course by the grade points earned. A student may retake a course if a higher grade is required or desired. The initial grade received in the course remains on the student's record, along with an R to indicate that the course was repeated. Credit is given only once for taking the course, and only the higher grade is used in computing the student's grade-point average. The Olin Business School employs the following grading system for evaluating student performance:

Grade Points Per Unit
A 4.0
A- 3.7
B+ 3.3
B 3.0
B- 2.7
C+ 2.3
C 2.0
C- 1.7
D+ 1.3
D 1.0
D- 0.7
F 0.0
P# Pass
F# Failing
I Course work incomplete
W Withdrawal
R Repeat
L Successful audit
Z Unsuccessful audit
N No grade submitted

Auditing a Course

A student may take a maximum of one course per semester on a pass/fail/audit basis. Students may not audit a business course. However, a student may take non-business courses for audit with the approval of the professor. An audited course does not count toward the student's degree requirements. A grade of L indicates the satisfactory completion of an audit; unsatisfactory completion results in a grade of Z. Fees for auditing a course are assessed at the same rate as for all other courses.

Pass/Fail Option

A student may take a maximum of one course per semester on a pass/fail/audit basis. A grade of P# (pass) indicates that credit has been awarded but the work was not subject to finer evaluation. The following policies are in effect starting Fall 2021. Courses taken previously will not retroactively be changed. 

  • All Olin professional, major, and minor courses must be taken for a letter grade. This includes any non-BU courses counting toward Olin's professional course work (i.e., Econ 1021 as a substitute for MEC 292). For second majors and minors outside of Olin, students should speak with their second major or non-Olin minor advisor.
  • Olin courses taken pass/fail cannot count toward the 60 required business units. However, they will count toward the 120 units required for graduation.
  • A maximum of 6 Olin units may be taken as pass/fail after a student has completed six full-time semesters of enrollment or if the student is in their senior year.
  • Pass/fail cannot be used for Math 131, Math 132, College Writing, or the Ethics and Values distribution requirement.
  • A maximum of 9 units of distribution or advanced electives can be taken pass/fail. The pass/fail course may only count toward one requirement. In other words, a single pass/fail course cannot be double counted toward a distribution and an advanced elective. 
  • Not all courses have the pass/fail option. Please check the course listings. 

Incomplete Grades

A student may be given an I (incomplete) when extenuating circumstances preclude the satisfactory completion of course work during the semester in which a particular course is taken. While an incomplete grade is sometimes appropriate, a student should make every effort to avoid the accumulation of incomplete grades. Incomplete grades are expected to be finished. Failure to finish an incomplete grade by the following semester will result in a failing grade.

Minimum and Maximum Course Loads

Olin Business School students are required to enroll in a minimum of 12 units to a maximum of 21 units each semester at Washington University. A minimum 2.0 GPA in all course work taken at the university and a 2.0 GPA in all professional course work taken at Olin must be achieved to satisfy BSBA graduation requirements.

Repeating a Course

A student may retake a course if a higher grade is required or desired. The initial grade received in the course remains on the student's record. An R will be placed next to the course with the lower grade to indicate that the course was repeated. Credit is given only once for taking the course, and only the higher grade is used in computing the student's GPA.

Academic Standing

Olin students are expected to maintain a high level of scholarship during their time at Washington University. Approximately three weeks after the end of a semester, the Academic Review Committee reviews the record of each enrolled student. Students must attain and maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA in their professional (business), semester, and cumulative GPAs to be in good academic standing. In addition, students must be making progress to complete their professional requirements within a reasonable time period. Failure to achieve minimum standards may result in the student's academic records being reviewed for academic action.

To learn more about academic standing, please review the University’s policies

Satisfactory Academic Progress for Title IV Federal Financial Aid

The minimum GPA requirements needed to maintain eligibility for Satisfactory Academic Progress are dictated by the specific program of study. In each case, per the requirements of 34 C.F.R. 668.34(a)(4(ii), the federal student aid program requires a minimum of a C average to maintain eligibility for aid, but an individual degree or certificate program may have a higher minimum GPA for federal Satisfactory Academic Progress. Olin Business School requires a minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA for Satisfactory Academic Progress. (Additional information about Satisfactory Academic Progress is available from Student Financial Services.)

Leave of Absence Process

If a student is an undergraduate in good standing at the completion of a term, they are eligible to apply to take a leave of absence from the Olin Business School. The student should first contact their academic advisor to discuss the situation. Students must submit a request for a leave of absence to their four-year academic advisor. A student on an approved leave of absence should submit a Reinstatement Form by March 1 for a fall semester return or October 1 for a spring semester return.

A student wishing to take a medical leave of absence (MLOA) should first talk with a representative from Habif Health and Wellness Center. Then, the student should submit the MLOA petition to Habif Health and Wellness Center. A student's request for an MLOA or for re-enrollment after an approved MLOA will be reviewed by Habif Health and Wellness Center once the recommendations are received. The decision of whether or not to grant the request for an MLOA or re-enrollment will be communicated to the student. 

In either case, the student must complete the Request for Leave of Absence form and submit it to the appropriate office for consideration. Students should review the current edition of the BSBA Student Handbook for any additional information.

A student who wishes to formally withdraw from the university should meet with their business school advisor to file a Withdrawal Petition. In the event that a student wishes to return after formally withdrawing from Olin, that student must re-apply for admission if they wish to return to the university.

Transfer Credit

The Olin School expects that all degree requirement courses be taken at Washington University. However, students who are enrolled at Olin and wish to receive transfer credit for course work taken at another institution may request course approval. Transfer course approval must be received prior to the start of the transfer course. General guidelines are as follows:

  • A grade of a C or better must be earned for all transfer credit to be accepted (including course work taken through a Washington University–approved study abroad program).
  • The Olin School expects that all business courses will be taken at Washington University. Under certain circumstances, permission may be granted for a student to take a business course from another university with accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International. For consideration to be given, a syllabus showing the text used must be submitted. 
  • All business major and minor course work must be taken in residence. Although major and minor course work can be taken through an approved study abroad program, only one course will be counted for each major and minor.
  • The institution must meet accreditation requirements.
  • A catalog description or syllabus for each course must be submitted with the request for review.
  • No credit will be granted for course work taken online through another university.
  • 54 of the 60 Olin professional units must be taken in residence.
  • A maximum of 6 units may be taken during a summer program from another university.
  • Credit will not be given for course work taken at another institution during a student's last 30 credit units.
  • No course work may be taken at a two-year institution after a student has accumulated 60 credit units of work.
  • No transfer credit will be accepted for courses taken while a student is suspended from Washington University for violations of the University Student Conduct Code or Academic Integrity policy.

School of Continuing & Professional Studies Courses

BSBA students may enroll in one course in the School of Continuing & Professional Studies per semester. However, these units will not count toward the 120 units needed for the BSBA degree nor toward the student's GPA.

Pre-Matriculation Units

Pre-matriculation units are earned before the student's enrollment at Washington University as a first-year student. These units would include Advanced Placement (AP) examinations, International Baccalaureate (IB) programs, British Advanced (A) Levels, and college credit earned after the student's sophomore year in high school. These units will be noted on the student's transcript. The maximum number of pre-matriculation units awarded is 15. These pre-matriculation credits will transfer as general elective course work and will not satisfy any distribution requirements. If a student takes a course in residence for which they have already received AP credit, the AP credit will be removed automatically.  All BSBA students and second majors will be required to take DAT 120 Managerial Statistics I, even when AP credit is earned for Math 2200 Elementary Probability and Statistics.

Olin Undergraduate Student Handbook

The Olin Undergraduate Student Handbook includes general academic policies and procedures for the undergraduate programs of the Olin Business School at Washington University. Please read and refer to the handbook to answer any questions about the undergraduate business program. If a student has questions about the interpretation of the policies and procedures or topics that are not in the handbook, they should consult their academic advisor.

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