Academic Policies and Procedures
Examination credit is evaluated only at the student's request. Students wishing to receive examination credit must first meet with an academic advisor to complete a request form that is then submitted to the Office of the Registrar.
Documentation of any lower-division credit established by examination through such programs as the AP (Advanced Placement Program) or the SAT II that the student wishes to apply toward college credit should be received by the University prior to registration. Academic hours awarded through credit by examination become a permanent part of the student's official UT Dallas transcript.
Credit for admission may be established through such testing programs as the Advanced Placement Program (AP), the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), the International Baccalaureate (IB), and SAT II subject examinations. Guidelines for credit by examinations are available on the UT Dallas website at oue.utdallas.edu. Test scores not appearing on official transcripts must be submitted directly from the testing agency. UT Dallas will provide college credit to those who present an International Baccalaureate Diploma in accordance with Texas state law.
No more than six semester hours of extension, credit by examination, or correspondence credit may be applied toward upper-division requirements and must be upper-division credit earned at an appropriate accredited institution or through acceptable scores on approved tests. The University does not offer correspondence courses.
Certain programs require students to submit to and satisfactorily complete a background check review as a condition of admission and/or participation in education experiences. Students who refuse to submit to a background check or who do not pass the background check may be dismissed from the program. The student is responsible for the costs associated with the criminal background check.
The Texas Success Initiative (TSI) is a state mandate that requires students to be assessed in reading, writing and math skills prior to enrolling in college, and to be advised based on the results of that assessment. Each institution determines an individualized education plan to encourage academic success for those students who score below a deviation standard (or do not pass an approved assessment instrument). Students may be required to retest if they do not pass the initial test.
UT Dallas uses primarily the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA), formerly the TASP test, to measure student proficiency in the basic areas of study for fulfillment of the TSI requirement.
UT Dallas requires incoming students who are not TSI exempt to take the THEA test. The required passing standards on the THEA are:
- Reading - 230
- Math - 230
- Writing - 220
- Students who are non-degree seeking or non-certificate-seeking.
- Students who have graduated with an associate or baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution of higher education.
- Students who have previously attended any Texas public institution and have been determined to have met readiness standards by that institution.
- Military Service:
- Students who are serving as active duty members of the Armed Forces of the United States are TSI exempt. Official documentation of active duty status for the enrollment period is required. Students must file a Verification of Active Duty form each semester.
- Students who are on active duty in the Texas National Guard are TSI exempt. A verification letter from the Unit Administrator is required each semester.
- Students who are currently serving, and have for at least the last three years before enrollment served, as members of a reserve component of the armed forces are TSI exempt. A verification letter from the Unit Administrator is required each semester.
- Students who on or after August 1, 1990, were honorably discharged, retired, or released from active duty as members of the Armed Forces of the United States, Texas National Guard, or of a reserve component of the Armed Forces of the United States are TSI exempt. A copy of the DD214 form showing this status is required.
Students who have achieved the following standards are TSI exempt and are not required to take additional placement testing before registering for courses at UT Dallas.
- ACT - Students with ACT composite score of 23 or higher, with individual math and/or English scores of no less than 19. ACT scores can be no more than five years old.
- SAT - Students with an SAT composite score of 1605 or higher, with 500 critical reading, 500 math and 500 writing sample score are TSI exempt. SAT scores can be no more than five years old.
- TAAS - Students with exit-level TAAS scores of 1770 or higher on writing, TLI of 89 or higher in reading, and TLI of 86 or higher in math are TSI exempt. TAAS scores can be no more than three years old. (The exit-level TAAS is a test given in Texas public high schools).
- TAKS - Students with exit-level TAKS scores of 2200 or higher in English Language Arts and Math as well as a score of 3 or higher in the writing sample (which is often not printed on your high school transcript, but can be found on the exit-level TAKS score report). TAKS scores can be no more than three years old.
The following alternative tests may be used to satisfy UT Dallas’s TSI requirements. Furthermore, please be aware that the THEA writing requirement is fulfilled by meeting the minimum score requirements on both the writing and essay sections of the tests below:
- ASSET - Students with the following minimum scores are TSI/THEA exempt. Reading: 41, Math: 38, Writing: 40/Essay: 6
- COMPASS - Students with the following minimum scores are TSI/THEA exempt. Reading: 81, Math: 39, Writing: 59/Essay: 6
- ACCUPLACER - Students with the following minimum scores are TSI/THEA exempt. Reading: 78, Math: 63, Writing: 80/Essay: 6
- MAPS - Students with the following minimum scores are TSI/THEA exempt. Reading: 29, Math: 22, Writing: 21/Essay: 6. MAPS scores are acceptable only if taken prior to 9/1/2003.
Note: Transcripts should be submitted to UT Dallas as soon as possible. Official evaluation must be completed to determine course equivalencies before a TSI waiver will be granted.
The Office of Student Success and Assessment provides Developmental Education for the UT Dallas campus. When undergraduate students are first admitted at UT Dallas, they are immediately TSI liable. If they are not previously either TSI exempt or TSI waived, undergraduate students must take a THEA examination or other approved assessment instrument prior to the beginning of their first semester at UT Dallas.
Enrollment into Developmental Education
Students who are required to take the TSI/THEA and do not successfully pass all three sections at the level of the previously stated standards will be required to register for Developmental Education courses for all areas in which they did not achieve the stated standard.
Placement into Developmental Education Courses
Developmental Education coursework is designed to build upon existing skills in order to facilitate student success in the core curriculum at UT Dallas. The Developmental Education courses that are offered are as follows:
Students are required to remain in Developmental Education until they pass the THEA examination or other approved assessment instrument in the particular content area in which they had previously failed. If students do not pass the examination after one semester of developmental coursework, they re-enroll in the same course. Students are not permitted to enter college-level courses without evidence that they possess the basic skills necessary to have a reasonable chance of success; thus, students are not permitted to be enrolled in “college-level and developmental work in the same content area simultaneously.” Students who are required to be in Developmental Education for TSI purposes may not drop a developmental course unless they pass the THEA examination or other approved assessment instrument or withdraw from all University courses for the semester.
Provisions for Transferring Students
Students transferring to The University of Texas at Dallas from private or out-of-state institutions must meet TSI requirements before enrolling in any college-level work. Students who transfer with 60 or more accumulated semester credit hours or the equivalent to UT Dallas from a private or out-of-state institution may use transferred courses which correspond to courses approved by UT Dallas to satisfy TSI requirements. Students must have earned a course grade of “C” (2.00 on a 4.00 scale) or better in each of the three skill areas. If not, the students must be tested for the remaining skill areas and must comply with all other TSI requirements.
Students transferring from other Texas public institutions of higher education must be TSI exempted or comply with the UT Dallas policies for Developmental Education set forth in this document.
NOTE: Students who have accumulated 60 hours of college-level coursework may not enroll in any upper division courses until they have met all UT Dallas TSI standards.
The specific application for the TSI as outlined in this statement applies to UT Dallas students only.
TSI: The Texas Success Initiative (formerly TASP) is a state-legislated program designed to improve student success in college. There are two components of the program:
- an assessment to diagnose students’ basic skills in reading, mathematics, and writing; and
- developmental instruction, to strengthen academic skills that need improvement.
THEA: Texas Higher Education Assessment.