Decisions at End of Term Review
CAP makes one of the four following decisions on each record reviewed at the End of Term. Click on a link below for the consequences of each decision.
The Committee takes no formal action on your term's performance. Nothing appears on your internal or external record. If this decision is made at the Grades Meeting, you will not be notified. However, your department may send you a Departmental Warning letter, which is noted only in department records.
Pay attention to Departmental Warnings. They are meant both as a wake-up call, reminding you that you have not met minimum standards, and as an offer of help, pointing you toward people and offices that can help you improve your performance.
No Action is occasionally voted at the Deferred Action Meetings. In this case, because you will already have been notified of the Deferred Action decision, you will also be notified of the No Action vote. As before, nothing appears on your internal or external record.
A vote of Warning is a formal notice to you, your advisor, and your department that your record does not meet MIT's minimum requirements and that you must make satisfactory progress toward the degree in your next term. A second term with an unsatisfactory record will raise the possibility of Required Withdrawal — but this is not automatic: your department and CAP review each term and student individually.
Warning status means that you have a credit limit for the following term. Except for first-year students, this is usually four subjects, 48-51 units. First-year students are strictly limited to 48 units. Occasionally CAP will impose a higher or lower limit, usually in response to departmental request.
You must observe the Warning credit limit at all times during your next term. You may not register for more than four subjects with the intention of dropping back later. The intention of the limit is to help you improve your time management and study skills, to prevent you from over-committing yourself — and to provide a safe space in which to demonstrate that you can meet MIT's minimum standards.
If your record at the end of the following term is satisfactory, that is, above minimum standards, you are automatically removed from Warning status and you will have no credit limit in the following term.
See If You Are Warned for advice on how to respond constructively to a vote of Warning.
Communication Requirement Warnings
Communication Requirement Warnings are equivalent in every respect to Academic Warnings. The Communication Requirement is the only "paced" General Institute Requirement (GIR), that is, you are expected to pass one Communication-Intensive (CI) subject each year. Failure to keep up this pace is unsatisfactory progress toward your degree.
At the end of each term CAP reviews the records of students who have not kept pace with the Communication Requirement. Based on recommendations from the Subcommittee on the Communication Requirement (SOCR), CAP votes one of three Warnings:
- C (one term behind pace)
- CC (two or more terms behind pace)
- WC (Academic Warning and behind pace).
Each Warning carries a credit limit:
- C: an appropriate CI subject plus no more than four subjects totaling 48-51 units
- CC: an appropriate CI subject plus no more than three subjects totaling 36-39 units
- WC: an appropriate CI subject plus no more than three subjects totaling 36-39 units.
You must observe the Warning credit limit at all times during your next term. You may not register for more subjects than your limit allows with the intention of dropping back later. If you pass an appropriate CI subject during your next term and return to compliance with the Communication Requirement, you are automatically removed from Warning status and you will have no credit limit in the following term (assuming the rest of your term record also meets minimum standards).
Address questions about Communication Requirement Warnings to the Communication Requirement Office (email@example.com, room 12-126, 617-253-2313), See If You Are Warned for advice on how to respond constructively to a Communication Requirement Warning.
At the Grades Meetings, CAP will postpone action on records of two kinds:
- where the Committee wants to hear more information;
- where the final vote may be Required Withdrawal.
In both cases students, advisors, departments, and housemasters are notified of the Deferred Action so that they can prepare information for the Deferred Action Meetings, held two weeks later. Students and advisors receive this notice by email and posted letter.
If you receive a Deferred Action letter, see If Your Review is Deferred for advice on how to respond constructively.
Required Withdrawal means that you must leave MIT for at least two consecutive terms. It is not expulsion, though you must apply for readmission in order to return. Its purpose is to give you time in which to assess your priorities, work at clearing issues or situations that contributed to your failure, and prepare for possible return to MIT. The Institute encourages you to keep in touch with your advisor, department, and a dean in Student Support Services while on required withdrawal status.
See If You Are Required to Withdraw for advice on how to respond constructively to this action. For full information about processes for Required Withdrawal and possible readmission, see the Student Support Services website.
CAP rarely requires a student to withdraw without at least one term spent on Warning, though circumstances sometimes warrant this.