Dec 07, 2023  
2008-2009 Academic Catalog 
2008-2009 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Academic Policies and Information

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Definitions and Explanations


Units of Credit - Semester Hours

Academic credit at Amarillo College is granted on the basis of semester hours. In general, a semester hour of credit is given for passing work in one lecture period of 50 minutes each week, two to four laboratory hours each week, or four to 16 clinical hours each week for 16 weeks.

Course Numbers

All courses are designated with a prefix, which denotes the field of study, and a four-digit course number.

Course Numbering Guideline

  • The first digit of the number indicates the classification of the course: 1 - freshman, 2 - sophomore, 0 - developmental.
  • The second digit indicates the number of semester hours credit the course carries.
  • The last two digits indicate the course sequence. Thus English 1301 would be the first English course in the sequence.
  • Courses designated with an * and footnote in the course description section of the catalog comply with the Texas Common Course Numbering System (TCCNS). These courses are designed to transfer to public colleges and universities in Texas. Courses that are designed for a specific technical program follow the Workforce Education Course Manual content and numbering system.

Semester Load

The minimum semester load for full-time status in a fall or spring semester is 12 credit hours. Students who wish to enroll in more than 21 hours must have the approval of the Vice President and Dean of Instruction.

A summer semester consists of a variety of variable length terms. The normal summer semester load is six to eight hours. Students who wish to enroll in more than nine hours must have the approval of the Vice President and Dean of Instruction.

Academic Freedom for Students


Students shall be free to be guided by scholarly research, study the substance of a given discipline, examine pertinent data, question assumptions, take reasoned exception to information and views offered in the classroom, and reserve judgment about matters of opinion.

Academic Standing


Students must meet academic standards in work completed at Amarillo College each semester. The College places those students who fail to meet these standards on academic probation or academic suspension. Students who meet or exceed academic standards set by the College, will be considered in good standing. In determining academic standing, the College considers grades earned only at Amarillo College.

Academic Probation


A student will be placed on academic probation when the student’s semester grade-point average falls below a 2.0 and the student’s cumulative grade-point average is less than 2.5. For purposes of determining academic probation, all course work taken during the summer terms in a given year will be considered as one semester.


Academic suspension is effective for at least one semester. The summer term may serve as a suspension semester.

  • A student on probation is required to participate in the probation program.
  • A student receiving Veteran’s Administration benefits who fails to maintain a 2.0 cumulative grade point average after earning 31 credit hours, or is placed on academic suspension, will be reported to the VA as making unsatisfactory progress.


  • A student is removed from academic probation when a 2.0 grade-point average or better is earned on all work attempted at Amarillo College during the semester that the student is on probation.

Academic Suspension


A student on probation who fails to bring his/her semester grade-point average up to a minimum of 2.0 will be suspended through the next semester. For purposes of determining academic suspension, all course work taken during the summer terms in a given year will be considered as one semester.


Academic suspension is effective for at least one semester. The summer term may serve as a suspension semester.

  • A Suspension Waiver Program is offered during the fall and spring semesters. A student who has been suspended from Amarillo College or any other college may contract to participate in the Suspension Waiver Program during his or her semester of suspension. Students who choose to participate in the program are allowed to attend classes during the suspension semester as long as they fulfill the requirements of the Suspension Waiver Program contract.
  • A student who is on suspension from Amarillo College, may choose to not attend classes during his/ her one semester of suspension.


  • After the suspension semester, the student is eligible for readmission to Amarillo College the next semester on academic probation.

Academic Support Services


Services for Students with Disabilities

disAbility Services coordinates student services including academic advising, testing accommodations, tutoring, classroom accommodations, registration assistance, and barrier-free access to campus facilities for Amarillo College students with disabilities. In addition to working closely with various state and local agencies, disAbility Services coordinates efforts with Amarillo College administration, faculty, and staff in providing services for students with disabilities.

Prospective and current students, parents, and others who are interested in such services or more information should contact disAbility Services, at (806) 345-5639 or (806) 371-5436.

Peer Tutoring

Currently enrolled students are eligible for free:

  • one-on-one tutoring for many courses
  • SMARTHINKING online tutoring
  • Walk-in tutoring

For more information, log on to, come by L-011, or call (806) 371-5432.

Student Support Services

Student Support Services is a government-funded program offering support services to 250 qualifying Amarillo College students. To qualify, one must be a first-generation, low-income, and/or disabled student. These services include specialized advising, academic intervention, transfer assistance, professional tutoring, study skills seminars, transition and time management helps, and guidance toward financial aid help.

Learning Framework (PSYC 1200/EDUC 1200)

Learning Framework courses help incoming freshmen achieve success by teaching:

  • How and why we learn
  • How to adjust to each course successfully

This course is highly recommended for all incoming students. To register or for more information, log on to, talk to your advisor, or call (806) 371-5427


Academic Services



Advising services are available to all students and prospective students. Academic advisors work with students to aid them in evaluating academic, personal, career and transfer options. General Studies, non-degree seeking or new students will see advisors in the Student Services Center, Suite 130 (Washington St. Campus). All other students with declared majors will be assigned a Divisional Advisor located in other offices on campus. Students can be given this contact information through Ask AC (371-5000) or the Advising Department (371-5440).

It is important to utilize advising services for more than just scheduling of classes. Advisors have been trained to respect students’ needs and help them:

  • identify areas of interest
  • formulate personal career action plans
  • set life goals
  • explore realistic employment opportunities
  • explore resources to overcome stumbling blocks
  • identify academic ambitions and frustrations
  • by serving as a point of contact when they “just need someone to talk to”

Additional information is available on the web at


The Adult Students Program is a part of the Advising Department. Information regarding the program can be obtained on the Washington Street Campus at (371-5449, SSC, Suite 130) or on the West Campus (354-6007, WCLC, Room 102A).

The number of adults, women in particular, enrolled in higher education has risen significantly. Often these students have special needs upon returning to college because of family and job obligations. Amarillo College is sensitive and responsive to the personal and educational needs of the adult learner.

Support services include:

  • educational and career guidance referral to other agencies for additional assistance if needed
  • tuition, childcare, transportation, textbook and emergency assistance (subject to: meeting needs’ criteria & availability of funds)

Additional information is available at


As a component of the Advising Department, these services are located on the Washington Street Campus (371-5459, SSC, Suite 130).

Services include:

  • Educational/Career Planning (PSYC 1171), a onecredit hour class to assist students in choosing a career and/or major
  • Individual career planning sessions (appraisal of interests, values clarification for job satisfaction, identification of personality type for career choices, etc.)
  • Special collection of career/employment materials, software and electronic resources
  • Assistance with completing applications appropriately, writing resumes, and preparing for job interviews
  • Employment referrals for students and alumni
  • Additional information may be found at http://www.

Community Link


Community Link is an outreach program of Amarillo College located in Northeast Amarillo. The program provides an accessible location and a safe place for many prospective students to make the first steps to a college education.

Services offered include:

  • One-on-one assistance completing applications for admissions, federal financial aid, and scholarships
  • Career Options and Financial Aid workshops
  • GED & employability skills preparation
  • Conversational English classes with a workplace focus
  • Computer literacy training

Community Link is located at 2412 N. Grand, Amarillo, Texas. For more information call 381-8968. Se habla Español.



Regular attendance is necessary for satisfactory achievement. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the student to attend class in accordance with the requirements of the course as established by the instructor. Attendance and/or participation requirements in courses delivered electronically (telecourses and on-line courses) will be unique to the individual course.

Religious Holy Days

Amarillo College shall excuse a student from attending classes or other required activities including examinations for the observance of a religious holy day, including travel for that purpose. A student whose absence is excused for this observance may not be penalized for that absence and shall be allowed to take an examination or complete an assignment from which the student is excused within a reasonable time after the absence.

Amarillo College may not excuse absences for religious holy days which may interfere with patient care.

If a student and an instructor disagree about the nature of the absence being for the observance of a religious holy day, or if there is a similar disagreement about whether the student has been given a reasonable time to complete any missed assignments or examinations, either the student or the instructor may request a ruling from the President of Amarillo College or his or her designee. The student and the instructor shall abide by the decision of the President or the designee.

Class Cancellations


Weather Closing Policy

If Amarillo College campuses are closed because of inclement weather, an official announcement will be made through all local television stations and KGNC radio. The message will also be posted on the college website and the College’s main telephone number (806) 371-5000.

Morning closings will be announced by 6:30 a.m. The decision to close or change evening classes will be made by 3:00 p.m. If a decision to cancel classes or close a campus is made during the day, students will be notified through the media and website. If no announcement is made, the College is open as normally scheduled.

Please listen closely to weather announcements as one campus may be closed while others remain open.



Alternative Methods of Earning Credit

This is a program that allows students to earn college credit through the completion of technical courses in high school. Amarillo College participates in the Top of Texas Tech-Prep Consortium. Through this consortium Amarillo College has created a number of cooperative programs with area high schools. After completion of a Tech-Prep program in high school, students may enroll at Amarillo College and petition for credit based on the completion of the Tech-Prep program. High school students are urged to review the requirements of the articulation agreement for their specific program. Students may obtain copies of their articulation agreements from their high school counselor or from the Tech-Prep coordinator at Amarillo College.

College Credit by Examination
College credit can be granted for successful completion of selected examinations from the testing programs described below. Students must be enrolled at Amarillo College in order to receive credit by examination. Course work will appear on the student’s transcript with a grade of “E” indicating “credit by examination.” Students are responsible for having their test results sent to the Registrar’s Office and filing the petition for credit. Registration materials for testing are available at the Testing Center and in most secondary schools. More information about these exams can found on the Amarillo College website,

Contact the Amarillo College Testing Center in the Student Service Center, Room 101, for information on the following programs:

College Level Examination Program (CLEP) Amarillo College grants semester-hour credit for certain CLEP examinations which measure achievement in specific courses.

College Board Advanced Placement (AP) Program examinations are offered in participating secondary schools in May of each year. Information may be obtained by calling the local public school administration, or by visiting the Educational Testing Service online at Students may obtain a complete list of Amarillo College courses for which AP credit may be granted. Contact Testing Services for more information. Credit may be granted for a score of three or above to qualified students.

SAT Testing Program This program consists of the SAT I-Reasoning Test with writing and the SAT II-Subject Tests. Students may qualify for English and Mathematics credit at Amarillo College according to scores on these exams.

ACT Testing Program ACT examinations consist of four sub-tests in math, English, science, social studies and an optional writing test. Amarillo College awards credit for English and Math based on ACT scores.

Department Examinations Several departments within the college prepare, administer, and score comprehensive examinations. A passing score on one of these exams will qualify a student for credit in the specific course covered by the examination. Students should contact the department chair for additional information.

Credit for Experience/Professional Licensure Students who have completed one year of active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States and who have been discharged or released honorably may receive three semester hours of physical education credit. Students who wish to obtain this credit should submit an original copy of their DD 214 to the Registrar’s Office.

Credit will be awarded for learning achieved through experiences outside typical educational settings when it is consistent with the educational objectives of the student, the requirements of the curriculum, and the policy on granting credit for experience. Awarding of credit will be considered for the following experience:

  • military training and experience;
  • professional certificates, licenses, and credentials such as FAA licenses, medical field licenses, etc.;
  • learning achieved through proprietary schools, apprenticeship or other in-house training programs;
  • other experiences with appropriate documentation.

Students must be enrolled at the time they apply for credit. The credit, if awarded, must apply to the student’s declared major.

  • Contact the department chair specific to the subject area to see if their request is feasible.
  • Prepare application for credit by experience identifying course chosen for credit.
  • Each application/portfolio must include a written justification by the student.
  • Prepare portfolio documenting experience-should include, but is not limited to the following:
    • previous education related to course;
    • previous work experience, military, etc., including dates, titles, job descriptions;
    • in-service training workshops, including dates, topics, certificates, or transcripts;
    • professional certificates, licenses;
    • letter from employers, volunteer agencies, regulatory agencies supporting experience;
    • return application to department.

A committee will review for appropriateness and approval.

  • If the application is approved, the student will be notified to pay a $15 fee per course.
  • If disapproved, the application will be returned.

Advanced Standing (Without Credit)

Office Technology, Language, and Mathematics offer advance placement without credit to qualified students. Students may contact the department chairs for further information.

External Learning Experience

An External Learning Experience (ELE) is a competency-based learning experience that enhances lecture and laboratory instruction and is provided at work sites appropriate to a student’s field of study. The ELE allows the student to have practical, hands-on training and to apply learned concepts and theories in a workplace setting. There are four types of External Learning Experiences: clinicals, internships, practica, and cooperative education.

Each program of study determines the type of External Learning Experience that best meets the needs of its students. To participate in an External Learning Experience, students should have completed six semester hours in their occupational major and must have approval from their program manager. The number of semester hour credits students earn depends on the type of External Learning Experience and the number of approved work hours. In addition to the work experience, Cooperative Education students must attend a lecture series totaling 16 hours. This lecture series earns students one semester credit hour.

External Learning Experience students find that their studies have greater relevance when on-the-job experience is combined with classroom instruction. This integration of work and study increases the student’s competence and motivation because it reinforces why learning is necessary. Also, the student’s interaction with fellow workers and supervisors helps the student develop important human relations skills.

Distance Education


The Distance Education Program provides access to Amarillo College courses and support services for students separated by time and/or physical location from traditional classroom settings. Distance courses have the same features as on-campus courses in terms of academic quality, objectives, credit hours, content and transferability and require the same effort and commitment. Currently, students may take telecourses, online courses over the Internet, or interactive television courses. These courses offer flexibility to students who have time and distance constraints (


Students may take a variety of college-credit courses via telecommunications (television or radio)-“Telecourses.” Telecourses require that students view programs on KACV-TV or listen to programs on KACVFM 90. Students may record programs for viewing or listening at convenient times or for review.

Students may also rent a complete set of cassettes from a second-party provider. This rental fee is not a part of the regular tuition and fees.

Students are required to read, to prepare written assignments, to follow study-guide assignments, and to attend a few campus meetings, including an on-campus orientation. Campus visits and communication with support faculty are scheduled for mutually convenient times.

Telecourses can be taken with on-campus classes, and students may enroll in them through the normal registration processes. (For more information, visit

Online Courses

AC also offers online courses. Instead of attending regular classes on campus, students access weekly lessons and assignments on the Internet. Students must have access to an IBM compatible computer with a modem, an internet service provider, and a web owser.

Hybrid Courses

A hybrid course is a traditional face-to-face class that includes online components. The online components comprise a notable portion of the class. Internet use is required.

Interactive Television Courses

Interactive television instruction provides two-way, real-time communication between instructor and students who are geographically separated. Interactive television instruction requires the student to attend classes at a specific time and place, but often at a location much closer to where the student lives. AC currently has three interactive television classrooms.

Evening and Weekend Classes


Amarillo College offers classes during the evening and weekend hours for persons who wish to enroll in academic, cultural, or technical courses. Courses are provided in most departments of the College and are taught by regular faculty members and other qualified instructors.

Final Examinations


The schedule for final exams will be published each semester in the Class Schedule. Final examinations for courses offered on an alternative schedule will be administered according to information presented in each individual course syllabus.

Grades and Reports


Students’ semester grades in all courses are filed in the Registrar’s Office, and these are the official record of the College. A grade once earned and recorded cannot be removed. If a student repeats a course one or more times, the highest grade is the one counted toward fulfillment of degree requirements.

Grade Points       (Quality Points)
A   Excellent   4 grade points
B   Good   3 grade points
C   Average   2 grade points
D   Poor   1 grade point
F   Failure   0 grade points
I   Incomplete   Not computed
W   Withdrawal   Not computed
AU   Audit   Not computed

A grade point, or quality point, is the numerical value given to letter grades. Note above that an “A” is represented by a “4.” This means that an “A” in a one-credit-hour course earns 4 grade, or quality points. An “A” in a three credit-hour course earns 12 grade, or quality points, etc.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

Semester Grade Point Average - The semester GPA is calculated by dividing the number of grade points earned by the total number of credit hours attempted, including grades assigned for remedial/developmental course work and excluding all but the highest grade assigned where courses have been repeated. (Courses repeated at other schools will not apply to this policy.) This grade point average appears on official transcripts after each term enrolled.

Cumulative Grade Point Average - The overall GPA is calculated by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of credit hours attempted, excluding grades assigned for remedial/developmental course work and all but the highest grade assigned where courses have been repeated. (Courses repeated at other schools will not apply to this policy.) This grade point average appears on official transcripts after each term enrolled.

Graduation Grade Point Average - The graduation GPA is calculated by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of credit hours attempted, excluding remedial/developmental course grades and all but the highest grade assigned where courses have been repeated. (Courses repeated at other schools will not apply to this policy.) Any student with a graduation GPA below 2.00 may petition the Vice President and Dean of Instruction to exclude grades in courses not required for their degree or certificate. If the student is granted permission to exclude grades he will not be considered for graduation with honors. The graduation GPA is used to determine eligibility for graduation and will not appear on the transcript.

For multiple enrollments, failing grade(s) will be omitted and last grade counts.

Grade of “I”

An “I” (Incomplete) may be given when a portion of course requirements, such as an exam or a report, has not been completed. The student and instructor must complete a Contract for Incomplete Grade form prior to the granting of a grade of “I.” If the course is not completed by the specified deadline, the “I” will be changed to an F. The student is entirely responsible for completing the work that will remove the “I.”

Change of Grade

Any grade change must be made by the instructor of record, or in the absence of the instructor, by the department chair. Requests for grade changes made more than six months after the initial grade determination must also be approved by the division chair and Vice President and Dean of Instruction. Grade changes will not be made without sufficient justification.

Guarantee for Job Competency


Amarillo College guarantees that recipients of an Associate of Applied Science degree or Certificate of Completion will possess technical job skills identified as exit competencies for his or her specific degree program and required for an entry-level position in the occupation for which the program was designed. If such a graduate is judged by his or her employer to be lacking in those skills, the graduate will be provided up to 12 tuition-free credit hours or additional skill training by Amarillo College under the conditions of the guarantee policy. Students should contact their academic advisor or the Advising and Counseling Center for additional information.




A scholastic honors list will be published after the end of each (fall and spring) semester. Students must be enrolled in 12 or more hours of academic courses (nonremedial) and make a grade point average of 3.6 or above to qualify for the honors list. Any student not wanting his or her name published must submit a nondisclosure form to the Registrar’s Office prior to the twelfth class day.


The Honors Program is a curriculum of four core courses geared for motivated, intellectually curious students who appreciate small classes and a unique approach to learning. The courses include Public Speaking, Texas Government, Survey of Art and Music, and Literature of the Western World. Additional Honors courses, such as Microbiology and Calculus may be approved. Financial Aid provides up to $150 scholarships to the best qualified applicants whose grades are 3.5 or better. All honors courses are designated on the official transcript and students who complete the Honors Program receive an additional notation. Students also have the option of taking a single Honors course. For admission and advising information contact Judy Carter (371-5278 or

Police Department


Amarillo College is dedicated to ensuring our campuses are safe, healthy and drug-free places to visit, study and work. State-certified police officers are on duty to provide service to visitors, students, faculty and staff while they are on the College’s campuses.

To report criminal incidents, call 371-5163.

For traffic and parking regulations or additional information, consult the current Campus Safety, Traffic and Parking Regulations brochure.

Student Responsibilities


Students are responsible for knowing and understanding Amarillo College’s requirements relating to registration and academic standards. Students are encouraged to meet regularly with their academic advisors and to contact the Office of the Registrar with questions about academic procedures, policies or regulations.

Academic Grievances

A student who has a grievance concerning an academic course in which he or she is enrolled should make an appeal in the following order:

  1. Instructor
  2. Department Chair/Program Director
  3. Division Chair
  4. Vice President/Dean of Instruction
  5. College President

Changes in Student Information

Students are responsible for keeping the College informed of changes in their current postal address, e-mail address, name, or other pertinent information. All changes should be presented in writing to the Assistance Center, located in the Student Service Center on the Washington Street Campus or other campus Service Counters. A change of address may affect the student’s residency status, thus affecting a student’s tuition rate. Any communication mailed or e-mailed to the address on record is considered to have been properly delivered to the student.

Amarillo College Library


Amarillo College students may use all the facilities in the library’s two branches, Lucille King Lynn Library on the Washington Street campus and the West campus Library located in Amarillo Public Library’s Northwest branch.

Lynn Library provides most of the information and resources required for college courses. It houses the main printed book and microform collections, study areas, and the Learning Commons, a collaborative work and study area equipped with computer workstations and course-based software, scanners and photocopiers. Research and projects can be completed with the help of the library’s technical, reference and instruction staffs.

The West Campus Library holds materials primarily for nursing and allied health studies, but materials are also provided for all programs located on West campus. Computer workstations and related software are available. A librarian is on duty for research assistance.

Our computer workstations provide access to the World Wide Web. Over 24,000 electronic books and over 5,000 full-text periodicals in many individual disciplines are available at the library, work, or home through the library’s Web page.

Amarillo College Library is a member of the Harrington Library Consortium, a cooperative association of libraries throughout the Texas panhandle. Members extend borrowing privileges to Amarillo College students. The consortium includes all branches of the Amarillo Public Library.

Testing Center


The Testing Center, located in the Student Service Center, Room 101, offers a variety of services to students, prospective students, and instructors including standardized testing, make-up testing, instructional support such as certification and competency examination, and proctoring services for students enrolled in various distance learning programs.

Standardized tests are administered on scheduled dates and require advance registration and payment. The GED examination is administered each week. See the Testing Center website at for details.



Transcripts of credits must be requested in writing by the student. All admission requirements and financial obligations to the College must be met in full before transcripts will be issued.



Transferability of course work is usually dependent on the receiving institution’s course content requirements. No university is required to accept in excess of 66 semester credit hours in transfer from a community college. A university may accept more than 66 semester credit hours by choice, but cannot be compelled to do so. All students who may wish to transfer course work from Amarillo College to any college or university should contact the Admissions Office at the school to assure transferability.

Students may also compare the common course numbers with the common course information from the school where they wish to transfer. Courses designated with an * and a footnote in the course description section of the catalog comply with the Texas Common Course Numbering System (TCCNS). These courses are designed to transfer to public colleges and universities in Texas. Any student transferring from a community college to a university shall have the same choice of catalog designating degree requirements as the student would have had if the dates of attendance at the university had been the same as the dates of attendance at the community college. If students encounter transfer problems, they should contact the AC Advising and Counseling Center. Students transferring to public colleges and universities in Texas should contact the receiving institution regarding additional fees that may be charged if they enroll for credit hours that exceed those required for their degrees (see “Notices to Students” section of catalog for more information).

Transfer Dispute Resolution

The Texas Education Code Section 61.078 provides a means to aid students in resolving disputes regarding the transfer of course credits. To qualify as a dispute the course(s) in questions must be listed in the Community College General Academic Course Guide Manual and be offered at the receiving institution. The sending institution, or the student working through the senior institution, must initiate the dispute. From the date a student is notified of the denial of credit, the law allows a maximum of 45 calendar days for the resolution of the dispute by the sending and receiving institutions.

In order to challenge the denial of credit, a “Transfer Dispute Resolution” form, available in the Registrar’s Office, must be completed within 15 days after the student has been notified of the denial of credit. This form is sent to the receiving institution.

The receiving institution must then inform the student, the sending institution and the State Commissioner of Higher Education of the resolution. If need be, the Commissioner, or designee, may be called upon to resolve the dispute.

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