Academic Standing Before Fall 2022

The university's minimum standard for satisfactory academic achievement is a grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. Students with at least 7 attempted credits and a cumulative GPA of less than 2.0 fall into one of three categories: warning, probation, or suspension.

Standards of Academic Performance 

Students who maintain a cumulative GPA below 2.00 may face additional academic actions, such as probation, suspension, or dismissal. Therefore, our office strongly supports this limit. Students should be familiar with the retention table in the university catalog, as posted below.

Retention Table

Academic Warning

Students on academic warning are still considered in good academic standing but they will be limited to a maximum of 13 credits until they achieve a cumulative 2.0 grade point average. Students registered for 14 or more credits under Warning are responsible for seeking academic advisement and adjusting their enrollment to a maximum of 13 credits.  Students on academic warning may participate fully in student activities unless that activity imposes stricter limits.

Academic Probation

Students on academic probation will be limited to a maximum of 13 credits until they achieve a cumulative 2.0 grade point average. Students registered for 14 or more credits under Probation are responsible for seeking academic advisement and adjusting their enrollment to a maximum of 13 credits. Only students in good academic standing are eligible to hold or run for elective or appointive office in any organization or activity associated with Mason, compete in any athletic or other activity representing Mason on either an intercollegiate or a club level, or serve as a working staff member of any student organization. 

Academic Suspension

Students in degree status who incur a first suspension following a spring semester or summer term serve a period of suspension through the next fall semester. Students who incur a first suspension following a fall semester serve a period of suspension through the next summer term. A second suspension is for one calendar year: two semesters and a summer term. Students returning from suspension are on probation for one academic period. Course credits earned at other colleges during the period of suspension from Mason (for academic or nonacademic reasons) are not accepted for the degree program.

Nondegree undergraduate students placed on suspension have no specified rights of return to the university. Nondegree students who have been suspended and wish to resume their studies after a period of absence must qualify for readmission through the Office of Admissions.

More information on suspension can be found on the left hand navigation bar on this page under "Suspended."

Academic Dismissal

A third suspension results in academic dismissal, a status that is usually permanent. In exceptional cases, students who have been dismissed may apply for readmission after a minimum absence of three calendar years from the university, but only if they meet one or more of the following conditions after having been dismissed:

  • Demonstrate academic success (2.50 GPA or better) in at least 18 credits of classes taken during the period of dismissal at an accredited two- or four-year college or university. Such credits may be considered for transfer back to Mason, but there is no guarantee of acceptance of the credit.
  • Provide other evidence of a renewed ability to achieve academic success.
  • Provide evidence that all degree requirements will be met once an additional 12 or fewer credits are complete.

Meeting the above requirements does not guarantee a return. The Office of Admissions and the appropriate school or college dean will make individual decisions in the best academic interests of the student and the university. For students seeking readmission to a new school or college, the new dean will make the decision in consultation with the former dean and the Office of Admissions.

Policies to Consider

Limits on Registration

The Faculty Senate of George Mason University passed a resolution that limits undergraduate students with a cumulative GPA below 2.00 to a maximum of 13 credit hours. All undergraduate students returning from suspension are also limited to a maximum of 13 credit hours. These limits on registration are strictly enforced.

Exception for Freshmen and Transfer Students

Freshmen and transfer students in their first semester of study at Mason will receive probation as the strongest academic sanction. GPA retention levels, as stated above, will apply in all subsequent semesters.  Students in this category should be on notice that they must improve their academic record to avoid suspension in future semesters; in particular they should consult their advisors and consider repeating courses to achieve academic good standing.

Academic Warning, Probation, Suspension, and Dismissal Repeat Policy

For undergraduate classes not repeatable for credit, undergraduate degree students may repeat courses for which they seek a higher grade. A grade received in a repeated course will replace a grade in prior takings of the same course in the calculation of the cumulative GPA, even if the more recent grade is lower. Duplicate credit is not given. Repeat rules apply to taking the same course and courses designated in the catalog as equivalent. Repeat rules apply throughout a student's academic history. All instances of courses and their grades remain part of the student's transcript. No adjustment to the cumulative GPA will be made when the grade in the repeated course is W. A grade in a Mason course will not be excluded from the cumulative GPA based on a subsequent taking of an equivalent course at a transfer institution. The exclusion of earlier grades of repeated courses will not change the academic standing or dean's list notations for the earlier semester. Note that individual programs may disallow students from retaking certain high-demand courses simply for the purpose of improving their grade. Academic programs may restrict repeats of certain departmental or college courses in the major. Excessive repeats may result in termination from the major by a student's dean. Programs may also require departmental permission for students to repeat certain department, school, or college courses.