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KHAZAR POLICY


ACADEMIC POLICY

 

Credit System at Khazar University

At Khazar University students must study and pass a number of courses to obtain a degree: for example a minimum of 40 courses are required for the degree of Bachelor. Each course is worth a number of credits and most courses at Khazar are worth at least three credits. Credits are only awarded after the course has been successfully completed. Credits are sometimes referred to by other names, for example "credit hours" or "units" and in some cases the credit hours are close to the number of academic hours spent in class each week. In other cases, for example, in laboratory classes one credit hour is equal to 80 or 90 minutes spent in class each week. In general, credit hours reflect the contact hours and workload of a course.

The four-year Bachelor's degree at Khazar University requires the successful completion of between 128 and 140 credits and a minimum of 40 undergraduate level semester courses depending on the individual School and the major, that is, in a chosen field of study.
Candidates for the Masters degree with a Bachelor's must take between 32 and 60 credits, involving a minimum of 7 graduate-accredited courses, sometimes, including a thesis beyond the Bachelor's.

The candidate with a Masters Degree admitted to the Ph.D. program is required to take at least additional 7 courses (32-60 credits) including a dissertation although more credits and courses may be required to satisfy the particular aims of the student and the student's advisor.

Students may earn credits mainly during the Fall and Spring semesters, and register for at most 19 credits per semester. Full-time student is required to take at least 12 credits per semester, otherwise, s/he will be classified as a Part-time student. Courses taken for the Summer Session and few courses from the Khazar Extension Program may qualify for credits with the approval of the Department and Dean. During the Summer sessions a student may register for at most 10 credits.

In some cases, credits can be earned through good performance in placement examinations administered by Khazar University's academic departments.

Credit accumulation model is student-centered system based on prioritization of individual study trajectories of each student. In accordance with the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), one Khazar University credit equals two European Credits. ECTS is one of the key objectives of 1999 Bologna Declaration, which aimed at the creation of a common European Higher Education Area, and Azerbaijan joined the process in Spring 2005.

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Grading Policies at Khazar University

For undergraduate programs courses are graded as follows (in percentages on examinations and with an equivalence to letter grades):

  • "90-100" percent which is equal to "A" (excellent)

  • "80-89" percent which is equal to "B" (good)

  • "70-79" percent which is equal to "C" (average or satisfactory)

  • "60-69" percent which is equal to "D" (low pass or below average)

  • "0-59" percent which is equal to "F" (failure, i.e. no credit will be recorded for the course)

  • "IC" (Incomplete). This grade applies only to those students who were unable to complete their coursework due to sickness or another emergency situation or who have accumulated 57-59 percent. In this case, with the permission of the dean of relevant school, students are given additional time to complete their coursework and re-sit the exam upon their own wish, but must make a partial payment for that course. In case of their second failure in the exam, their grade is changed to "F")

  • "IP" (In Progress). A course that extends to two or more semesters is graded with "IP" until the specified period for its completion has expired. The grade is changed to "IC" if the requirements for the course are not fulfilled during the specified period.

Every undergraduate student is expected to maintain an average percentage of 70 or more to remain in good academic standing. Graduate students are correspondingly expected to maintain a percentage of 75 or more for Master's and Professional degree programs and 80 or more for Ph.D. degree programs to remain in a good academic standing.

For Master's and professional degree programs the letter grade D+, namely, "65-69", is for low pass and "0-64" percent is equal to F in this case. Ph.D. degree programs does not permit low pass grades, that is 0-69 is equal to F, i.e. no credit will be recorded for the course.

The assignment of a grade for a student's work in a course is primarily the prerogative of the instructor. Students, who by the end of the Spring semester still require a few credits to complete degree requirements, may be able to satisfy the deficiency during the subsequent summer session.

A student's grade-point average (G.P.A.) is obtained by dividing the total number of grade points (arrived at by multiplying the grade point for each course by the credit hours of the course and adding all) by the total number of credit hours of enrollment.

Example:

A student receives the following grades:
Mathematics (a 4-credit hours) - 82
English (a 3-credit hours) - 95

Then,
G.P.A. = (4 · 82 + 3 · 95) : 7 = 87.57
G.P.A. = 88

The G.P.A. is rounded up to the nearest whole number. Undergraduate students must retake a course or its equivalent, in which a grade of "F" (less than 60) was received. If the student's grade is "IC", s/he must either re-sit the exam (upon his/her own wish) or re-take the course. Correspondingly, students in Master's and professional degree programs must retake a course in which grade of less than 65 was received. Similarly for Ph.D. students a course with grade of less than 70 must be retaken. A course graded with "F" or "IC" or "IP" will not be considered while calculating student's G.P.A. However in the case of "F" and "IC", a student must retake and pass this course; in the case of "IP", a student must pass the course before the specified period of time. To improve his/her grade-point average undergraduate student may repeat only those courses, in which he/she receives grade of "D" (a grade 60-69). A student may not retake a course, in which a grade of "C", "B" or "A" was received (a grade is greater than or equal to 70). Only courses taken at Khazar University are considered for changing the course grade. It is the student's responsibility to bring any error in grades to the attention of the instructor and any error in G.P.A. to the attention of the Dean of the School or the Registration and Records Office.

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Classification of Undergraduate Students:

 Class Standing

In a bachelor degree program students are classified according to the number of credits earned. The classification is shown in the table below:

  • Freshman: a student who has earned less than 1/4 of total credits required to complete the program. E.g. In a 128 (132) credit bachelor program, it is a student who has earned less than 32 (33) credits.

  • Sophomore: a student who has earned less than 1/2 but more than or equal to 1/4 of total credits required to complete the program. E.g. In a 128 (132) credit bachelor program, it is a student who has earned 32 (33) or more, but less than 64 (66) credits.

  • Junior: a student who has earned less than 3/4 but more than or equal to 1/2 of total credits required to complete the program. E.g. In a 128 (132) credit bachelor program, it is a student who has earned 64 (66) or more, but less than 96 (99) credits.

  • Senior: a student who has earned 3/4 or more of total credits required to complete the program. E.g. In a 128 (132) credit bachelor program, it is a student who has earned 96 (99) or more credits.

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Classification of Courses

The Khazar course numbering system is based on a set of abbreviations for the academic disciplines, and three-digit course number. Most courses at Khazar University are numbered according to the following plan:

  • Primarily for pre-freshman courses 001 - 099

  • For freshmen and sophomore undergraduate courses 100 - 199 and 200-299

  • For advanced undergraduate and some graduate courses 300 - 399 and 400-499

  • For Graduate Courses 500 and higher
    (Please note that these are general guidelines and individual Schools, such as the School of Economics and Management as well as the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Public Health may have their specific course numbering)

Most of the advanced individual study and research courses are also numbered 500 or higher. With departmental and school consent, undergraduate students may enroll in 500- series courses for credit toward the bachelor's degree. With the approval of the major department, graduate students may take some courses numbered 300 or higher toward satisfying Master's or Doctor's degree requirements with additional course works, projects or independent study. Courses numbered 100-199 and 200-299 may not be applied toward graduate degrees. Courses are open to all students who have met the prerequisites indicated in departmental requirements or the course description.

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Academic Requirements

The Khazar University curriculum for the Bachelor's degree has three components. Students will complete three basic areas, which apply to all programs:
University Requirements (UR)
An Academic Core, or General Education Requirements (GER)
Major and major-related program requirements (MR)

Students must fulfill all the requirements of each of the three areas to be eligible for graduation.

University Requirements (UR)

Khazar has two University- wide requirements, which must be satisfied for the awarding of the Bachelor's degree. Students will complete the following UR courses of 27 credits:

Advanced English includes 15 semester credits of:

  • Reading/Listening 1 (3 credits)

  • Writing/Speaking 1 (3 credits)

  • Reading/Listening 2 (3 credits)

  • Writing/Speaking 2 (3 credits)

  • English for Special Purposes (3 credits)

The English courses must be completed during the first two years and it is recommended that they are concluded within three semesters of study at Khazar. Students, who perform exceptionally well in an appropriate placement test, may be permitted to take more advanced courses in English.

Azerbaijani Studies includes 12 semester credits of:

  • Azerbaijani (Azeri) Language and Composition (3 credits)

  • Azerbaijani Literature (3 credits)

  • Azerbaijani Culture (3 credits)

  • History of Azerbaijan (3 credits)

The Azerbaijani Studies component includes a one-year sequential course (6 credits: 3+3) in Azerbaijani Language and Azerbaijani Literature (AZLL). Students must demonstrate competence in writing, reading and speaking. AZLL should be completed preferably during the first year of study at Khazar. If a student's native language is not Azerbaijani, for the beginning, he/she is required to take Elementary Azerbaijani Language and Composition course especially designed for international students.

Students are placed in the appropriate English and AZLL courses based on the results of admission or placement tests.

Azerbaijani Culture is an elective course and student may choose available theoretical courses on Azerbaijani Culture or practice through attending cultural activities conducted by the Department of Music and Fine Arts (e.g. dance ensemble, chorus, folk music, vocal, national costume design, carpet making, etc.) and earn credits.

Azerbaijani History focuses of the main periods of the history of Azerbaijan from Ancient to modern times.

General Education Requirements (GER)

The purpose of the GER is to give students an understanding of the multiple realities of a culturally diverse and increasingly complex world from the viewpoint of different areas of human knowledge. The GER consists of areas of knowledge, mainly other than the student's own major field. The GER helps students to become an educated member of the society and to develop intellectual breath and cultural well-being.
Regardless of their major, students must meet the GER in the Freshman and Sophomore years. Students must complete three components of the General Education Program for 21 credits:

  • Humanities (6 credits)

  • Social Sciences (6 credits)

  • Science and Technology (9 credits)

The Humanities courses division of the program includes particular courses in Literature, Language and Linguistics, Philosophy, History, Culture and Civilization, Fine Arts and Art History. Students must take at least two courses with a minimum of 6 credits.

The Social Sciences group contains courses in Geography, Political Science, International Relations, Law and Government, Anthropology, Economics, Sociology and Psychology. Students must take at least two courses with a minimum of 6 credits.

Science and Technology component of the General Education Program unites three divisions:

  • Physical Sciences and Mathematics

  • Life Sciences

  • Computer Sciences

and contains, for example Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy, Geography and Environmental Studies, Geology, Biological Sciences and Anthropology, Public Health, Medical Science.

Students must complete at least three courses, at least one from each subgroup minimum of 9 credits.

Some of the fields of study may be included in different divisions according to the content of courses or applied methods. For example, courses in Anthropology, Geography and Psychology are related with the Social Sciences division, but, at the same time, some courses in these areas may concern themselves also with Natural Sciences.

A student, majoring in one of the GER divisions (Humanities, Social Sciences, Science and Technology) may take one major course in a corresponding division to meet GER. Courses required to satisfy the Major Requirements may not be used to complete the required 21 credits for GER, except for the above mentioned one course on Major. The individual Schools and Departments of Khazar University outline the numbered academic disciplines from which students may select courses to fulfill their General Education program.
Some degree programs require additional work in the three areas mentioned above, or require the student to take specific courses to fulfill the GER.

Apart from these, students can take two Open Elective courses - additional courses chosen freely from any division of the curricula without any restriction. The credit value of open electives must be at least 6 credits.

Major Requirements (MR)

At Khazar University students can select from a variety of majors in the fields of: Engineering and Applied Sciences, Law and Social Sciences, Economics and Management, Humanities, Education and Medicine.

Majors consist of courses focused on a particular academic field. Undergraduate students must earn at least a 70 G.P.A. in their Major Course Requirements. Most majors require course sequences starting in the freshman year.

Master's and professional degree programs require at least a 75 G.P.A., and Ph.D. degree programs require at least 80 G.P.A. in their Major Course Requirements. In all graduate programs at Khazar University, research is strongly emphasized.

Khazar University majors, areas of concentration, minors, and interdepartmental programs are designed to enable every student to study at least one field in depth.

This Catalog provides a list of academic departments, schools, research centers and institutes responsible for the Major Programs available at Khazar.

Degree Requirements

Degree Award Ceremonies
The degrees earned at Khazar University are awarded at the end of the Fall and Spring semesters, and Summer session. Diplomas are available one or two months after the degree award date. All the degree requirements must be completed before the student may participate in a degree recognition ceremony (an academic festive ceremony for graduates), usually held twice a year - in second parts of September and March. Students must file an application for a degree available at the Registration and Records Office.

Those, who complete their degree requirements during one of the semesters or summer session, must register for the next ceremony scheduled. In such a case no tuition is charged.

Bachelor's Degrees

Candidates for a Bachelor's Degree must satisfy the requirements listed below and any additional requirements set by the departments and/or schools. The general requirements are that a student:

  • earns between 128 and 140 credits with a minimum of 40 semester courses depending on the Major and School;

  • earns a cumulative grade-point average of at least "70" in all courses undertaken at Khazar;

  • completes the University Requirements by earning at least 27 credits;

  • completes the General Education Requirements by earning at least 21 credits. Students must earn at least 6 credits from both of the Humanities and Social Sciences Groups and a minimum of 9 credits from Science and Technology including at least 3 credits from each of Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Computer Sciences and Life Sciences;

  • completes the Major Requirements with G.P.A. 70 or above.


Master's Degrees

A candidate for the Master's degree is required to have an advisor from the department of the major field.

The general requirements for the Master's degree candidates with a Bachelor's are as follows:

  • students should take between 32 and 60 credits with a minimum of 7 graduate-accredited semester courses beyond the Bachelor's

  • students should earn a cumulative grade-point average of at least 75 in all courses undertaken at Khazar

  • students should complete the Major Requirements with G.P.A. 75 or above

  • a thesis may be required, as determined by the department or School of major study

In some Master's degree programs a student may earn credits (no more than 6 credits) by teaching undergraduate courses. Taught courses are to be related to the student's major field.

The examining committee is usually composed of four members.

Ph.D. Degree

A candidate for the Ph.D. degree is required to have an advisor from the department of the major field.

The candidate with a Master Degree admitted to the Ph.D. program is required to take at least an additional 7 courses (32 to 60 credits) including a dissertation although more credits and courses may be required to satisfy the particular aims of the student and the student's advisor. A student should complete the Major Requirements with G.P.A. 80 or above. Some Ph.D. majors allow a student to earn no more than 6 credits by teaching appropriate courses.

Upon the satisfactory completion of the course-work and the qualifying examination, a student selects a dissertation topic. Candidates shall demonstrate their abilities for independent study in their dissertations performing the original research.

Students shall present themselves at the final oral examination, in which they must defend their dissertations - define contributions to the knowledge in their fields and demonstrate the mastery in their areas of specialization.

The examining committee is composed of at least five members.

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Combination Undergraduate - Graduate and Joint Degree Programs

Khazar University offers several Combination Undergraduate - Graduate Programs or Joint Degree Programs, such as, Bachelor/Master and Master/PhD programs. The students can also study for double major awards.

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Combination Bachelor/Master and Master/PhD Programs

Some undergraduate majors allow the students to enter into joint BS/MS, BA/MA and/or BS/MA and BA/MS degree programs. An undergraduate student attending Master's degree courses or taking part in a research project is considered to be undergraduate student until he/she completes his/her Bachelor's degree requirement. To complete his/her BS/BA degree requirements a senior undergraduate student may take appropriate graduate level courses with the permission of the relevant department and School.

Students holding Bachelor or professional degree(s), and with high standing may apply for joint Master/PhD program. Within the framework of this program, the main goal is to complete the PhD degree requirements. However, as the first stage in their studies, students must meet Master degree requirements.

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Second Undergraduate Degrees

Two undergraduate degrees may be conferred if a student satisfies both major and major-related requirements within two departments or schools. If the double major is pursued in two schools, the student must designate when declaring the two majors which school he or she will be registered in and will graduate from. In order to be eligible for the second bachelor's degree, the student must apply for admission to the second degree program not earlier than the end of second year and not later than the end of third year. Exceptional cases may be considered for the approval of the relevant School and/or department. Upon completion of all requirements for the first program and the award of the first degree, the student's status will be changed to the second program. The student must again apply for graduation to be granted the second degree.

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Acceleration of Study

Acceleration is made possible by different options:

  • participation in the summer sessions

  • taking extra courses during the academic year with the approval of the Dean of School

  • earning a credit by passing the Advanced Placement Test

Khazar may also grant credit by examination with the fee to a student for his/her previous experience, or a previously learned course which is equivalent to a specific course offered by the school. Credit by examination may be granted only for a course listed in the Khazar University Catalog or its equivalent and only to a student, who has good standing.

Senior students in their final semester or summer session may enroll on a graduate course and reserve that course for a credit toward a graduate degree with the approval of the Dean of the student's undergraduate school and the student's graduate adviser in the proposed graduate major area.

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Honors Programs

Khazar Honors Programs offer special honors options to qualified students. Honors work is offered at all levels and in all departments. Honors courses have limited enrollment and are reserved for the most successful and motivated students.

The programs are characterized by holding small seminars, individual attention from faculty, extra access to the resources together with participation in university and community research and general meetings. Early honors work gives students a broad base of knowledge, skills, and understanding, which serves as a foundation for increasingly specialized upper-level honors work.

The Honors Programs require successful fulfillment of all the types of requirements (UR, GER, and MR) with honors options added with the advanced honors course work in the major and related areas and special honors projects.

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Graduation Honors

Graduation from Khazar University with honors is based on the cumulative G.P.A. of all grades earned by the graduate.

There are three kinds of graduation honors for undergraduate students at Khazar:

  • the diplomas of students, whose cumulative grade-point average is between 85 and 90 inclusive at graduation are inscribed "With Honors" (cum laude)

  • if G.P.A. lies between 91 and 95 inclusive, the phrase reads "With High Honors" (magna cum laude)

  • students earning a cumulative G.P.A. of 96 or better are designed as graduating "With Highest Honors" (summa cum laude)

For master's students, "Honor" diploma is granted to the students whose G.P.A. is equal to or above 90.

Graduation with honors does not apply to doctoral students.

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Dean's Honor List

At the end of each semester, the office of each Dean compiles an Honors List of students, whose work during the semester was generally outstanding. The Dean's List specifically includes those students, whose G.P.A. for the semester was 85 or better while registered for twelve or more semester hours of the course work. A grade of "F" or "IC" in any course makes the student ineligible for the Dean's Honor List regardless of other grades.

Evaluation

Students are evaluated on the basis of their academic performance during the semester. Assignment of a grade for a student's work in a course is primarily the prerogative of the instructor after consultation with the Dean. Besides final examination, different components could be used for the grade composition: attendance and participation, individual and group assignments, projects, discussions and presentations, labs, written papers, essays, practical and oral examinations, theses and dissertations for advanced degrees, etc.

If a student fails a course he/she cannot take a second examination until the course or its equivalent is retaken. As explained in the preceding pages of this Catalog, student who received "incomplete" grade are exception to this rule. Students who failed with a grade between 57-59, may re-sit the exam upon their own wish and must pay additional fee for re-sitting the exam.

All in-class examinations must be taken and all take-home assignments collected, completed, and submitted at the time and places designated on the official schedule published by the Registration and Record Office. Exceptions to this schedule are made only in a serious cases, including for the emergency reasons, and generally only with the prior approval of the Dean of the School. If a student is absent for a good reason from a final exam he/she must apply to the School's Dean to earn the course special examination privileges.

An evaluation of each student's progress is made by the Registration and Record Office after each semester. In addition to the cumulative grade-point average, this evaluation considers completion of all university requirements and the ratio of courses satisfactory completed to all courses attempted by the student. Students who are not making satisfactory progress are informed of the result of their evaluation.

For more information about examination and evaluation rules, please see Khazar University "Examination and Evaluation Guidelines".

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Access to Students Academic Records

Information about the University student may not be released to a third party without his/her permission. Exceptions are Law Enforcement and Financial Aid Institutions. The policy allows the students to review their academic records and to challenge the contents of those records. Some information about the student is considered public or directory information, for example, name, enrollment dates and status, school and class, major, advisor, academic awards and honors received, and degrees earned. Student may prevent the release of public information through contacting the Registration and Records Office.

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