Arizona College of Optometry

Glendale, AZ Campus

Academic Standards

College of Optometry

An annual didactic grade point average will be used as the central measure of academic performance. It is calculated from all didactic and clinical courses from  a particular professional year. Grades earned in courses taken prior to matriculation in the professional program, grades earned for courses taken at another institution while enrolled in the professional program, and grades earned for courses taken at the College in a more advanced professional year than that in which the student is enrolled, are not included in the calculation of this annual grade point average.

Students must maintain an annual grade point average of 2.00 in their professional program to remain in good academic standing. If a student's annual grade point average drops below 2.00 at the end of any quarter during the academic year, or the student earns a grade of "F/WF" in one or more courses, the student is notified, in writing that he/she is being placed on academic probation for the next academic quarter. Probation represents notice that continued inadequate academic performance may result in dismissal from the program and the College.

If the student has an annual grade point average less than 2.00 at the end of an academic year, or has earned one or two "F/WF" grades in a quarter the student will be either dismissed or  will be placed in an extended program (academic deceleration). The extended program year must take place in the year immediately following and the student will be required to repeat all the courses in which the grades of "F/WF" were received. A student is allowed to go through an extended program only once. To be returned to good academic standing, a student must raise his/her annual grade point average to 2.00 or above at the end of the repeat year. Such a student reenters the next professional year curriculum and resumes a full load. A reentering student must achieve a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 at the end of each quarter to continue at AZCOPT.

If the student does not meet the criteria for satisfactory academic performance at the end of the extended program, he/she will be dismissed.

If the student earns an "F/WF" in three or more courses overall, and/ or fails a repeated course, the student will be dismissed from the College. The dismissal is based on the determination by the Committee that the student has not satisfactorily demonstrated that he or she possesses the aptitude to successfully achieve the standards and requirements set forth in the academic policies and professional expectations for the program.

Academic recommendations are made by the Student Promotion and Graduation Committee to the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs. Students will be notified, in writing, within two working days following the committee meeting regarding the recommendations of the Committee.

The following policies also guide decisions made by the Student Promotion and Graduation Committee:

  1. A student must pass all required courses before entering the next year of the professional program.
  2. Students must successfully resolve all "I" (Incomplete) grades before beginning externship.
  3. To proceed with externship, a student must earn an annual didactic grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.00 for the third professional year. 
  4. In the event that a student does not pass NBEO Part I, the student may continue in the program. However, a student must pass NBEO Part I in order to graduate.