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Northwest Missouri State University


Degree Audit FAQs

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What is Degree Audit?

DegreeWorks is a web-based tool to help students and advisors monitor student progress toward degree completion. Degree Audit combines Northwest Missouri State University's degree requirements and the coursework you have completed with an easy-to-read worksheet that helps you see how courses that you have completed count toward degree requirements, and what courses and requirements you still need to complete.

Who can use Degree Audit?

Undergraduate students who are using the 2006-2008, 2008-2010, and 2010-2012 catalogs to fulfill their degree requirements can use Degree Audit. Exception forms for the 2006-2008 catalog must be entered manually into the new system, so some may not appear on the student's audit yet. Students who have been cleared to graduate in December 2010 should use the previous DARS system for audits. 

I think my audit is incorrect. What should I do?

Please ask for help from your advisor! While we have done everything we could to make sure that your worksheet is correct, it would have been impossible for us to predict every unique situation or problem. We want to work with you to correct any issues as soon as possible. The first step is to clarify what information you believe is wrong.  Additional questions may be directed to the Registrar or Graduate Office.

These are the most common problems and solutions:

My major is wrong and/or my concentration doesn't appear on my worksheet.

Undergraduate students need to update your major/minor/concentration information by filling out a form in the Registrar's Office. If you are changing advisors or adding a new advisor, the form will require the signature of the new advisor. Once the change is made, it should appear on your Degree Audit worksheet the next day. During pre-registration periods, changes may not be reflected immediately.

If you are a Graduate student, please contact the graduate office to determine your new program and advisor. You will then complete a new approved program form to complete this change.

The requirements for my major are wrong.

Look at the catalog term that appears on each of the bars that separate the sections of your worksheet. This is the catalog currently identified on the system as the one you are using to complete your requirements. If you're actually using older or newer requirements, you will need to update your catalog information by submitting a form in the Registrar's Office or Graduate Office. Once the changes are entered, the correct information will appear on your worksheet.

My transfer courses don't appear in the right place.

If you are concerned about how a transfer course was equated contact the Admissions Office. Graduate students should contact their advisor or the Graduate Office.

My BT degree audit does not give advice on what requirements are needed.

You must meet with your advisor to choose the specific requirements you will take. These requirements may not be reflected on the audit without an exception form.

My advisor or department chair gave me permission to substitute a course, but it's not showing on my audit.

Talk with your advisor to see if an exception has been sent. Advisors must initiate an exception/substitution by contacting the Registrar/Graduate Office.

If you need additional help identifying what's wrong, contact the Registrar's Office/Graduate Office.

My graduation application has been submitted, but Degree Audit says that I haven’t completed all my requirements. Does this mean that I won’t be able to graduate?

First, don't panic. If you have done everything indicated on the Senior Statement of Deficiencies (Approved Program Form for Graduate Students), and if you have followed through on any requirements we told you that you still needed to complete, you should still be on track for graduation. Contact your advisor to discuss what is needed to update your worksheet.

How is Degree Audit different from the degree audit program we already have (DARS)?

Degree Audit provides information in a more user-friendly and readable format. During later phases of our Degree Audit implementation, this program will also allow you and your advisor to develop long-range plans for degree completion. This program will also help the University gather critical information to help us with planning and reporting needs. With the release of Degree Audit, the former degree audit system will continue to serve students on catalogs prior to 2006-2008.

When should I look at my degree audit?

At least four times a semester. You should always review this information:

  • Before you meet with your academic advisor to discuss registration for an upcoming trimester.
  • After you register to ensure that the courses you selected applied to your requirements like you thought they would.
  • After your grades for each trimester are posted (Please view your grades through CatPAWS first because you will get your notice of Academic Standing there).
  • Any time you make a change to your schedule.

How is my degree audit different from my transcript?

Your degree audit is a tool to provide you with academic information related to your degree progress. It displays courses required and completed in your degree program. Your transcript is your official university record and provides a chronological list of courses completed and other academic information. Your official transcript must be requested from the University Registrar.

How does Degree Audit decide where to place courses that I’ve completed?

Degree Audit looks at your program holistically, and places each course using a "best fit" scenario. Priorities have been programmed so that courses will be used in some areas before they will be used in others. When multiple possibilities exist, we've worked with department chairs to determine how most students will use a particular course. This process will not always be perfect, particularly when multiple possibilities exist, so if you have a course that does not appear in the area in which you wanted to use it, please contact your advisor or the Registrar's Office/Graduate Office for assistance.

Degree Audit placed one of my undergraduate courses in two different places. Is that okay?

In most cases, yes. Degree Audit is programmed to recognize that some courses can fulfill more than one requirement. Be sure to look through requirements for your major in the University Catalog to make sure that this duplicate placement is appropriate. If you have any questions, contact your advisor.

What should I do if Degree Audit placed an undergraduate course in one section, and I want to use it in another?

Please contact your advisor to see if the course is approved for the other area. An Exception form will need to be sent to the Registrar's Office to initiate the change.

What is the upper division block?

Students earning a B.S.E.d. or B.S. degree are required to earn 40 hours of upper division credit (courses numbered 300 and above).  Students earning a B.A. degree are required to earn 32 hours of upper division credit. This block is designed to list the coursework students have taken that fulfill this requirement. IMPORTANT NOTE: Courses that appear in the Upper Division block do not fall into the "Courses Not Specifically Required" block,  even if they are available to use for a requirement. Students and advisors must carefully check to see if these courses are available to apply to a requirement.

How are incomplete grades counted on the degree audit?

Incomplete grades are counted as in progress coursework on the degree audit.

I earned an Associate’s Degree before I came to Northwest. How does this appear on my worksheet?

In most cases, your classes were coded during the Admissions process so they would be placed in the correct place on your worksheet. If your worksheet does not look like you expected it to, please contact the Registrar's Office.

Are there requirements for graduation that Degree Audit doesn’t check?

A few. While Degree Audit has been designed to check almost everything that you must complete to qualify for graduation, there may be additional requirements for your major that must be completed (for example, Portfolio, Praxis Exam, Oral Exam, etc.). You should use Degree Audit  in conjunction with the University Catalog and with any information that your major department provides to ensure that you remain on track for graduation. If you have questions about any additional requirements for your major, talk with your advisor during your next advising appointment.

The worksheet says that my Math Skills courses were excluded. What does this mean?

If you have taken Math Skills I or Math Skills II, a line will appear on your worksheet in the Not Counted section that states that your Math Skills courses have been excluded. Northwest Missouri State University does not allow Math Skills I and II courses to be counted toward the total hours required for graduation. We are putting these courses in this section so you are aware that these courses cannot be used toward the 124 hours required for undergraduate degrees. The courses do count toward the 12 hours needed for fulltime enrollment.

I petitioned to waive/substitute a course. How will that course appear on Degree Audit?

Your petition will be programmed after it is approved by your advisor, department chair, and, if necessary, dean. The course you completed will fulfill the requirement, and, in most cases, an additional line will appear under it that explains why the exception was entered. If you have a petition related to a transfer course, we will often make an adjustment to the course equivalency to ensure that it appears in the correct spot on your audit. In those cases, there may not be an explanation related to the change on your worksheet, but the course will be moved to the correct location.

I want to change my major. How can I see what would be required if I made this change?

You can use the "what-if" tab to do an audit using criteria you select. Please note, though, that what-if audits are unofficial and do not guarantee that you will be able to major in the area you select. If you decide you'd like to change your major, you should visit the department office for your intended major for information on major change procedures.

A What-If audit is not available for my degree?

Some degrees (Bachelor of Technology or Non-Degree Pre-Professional programs) are specifically tailored for each student thus a standard audit does not exist. Advisors will build specific audits in the student planner that serve as a guide.

My major requires me to complete a minor or concentration, but it didn’t appear on the audit. What’s wrong?

Either you haven't declared your minor or concentration yet, or you ran a "what-if" without adding a minor or concentration. If you need to declare your concentration, contact your department office for assistance.

I’m getting two degrees (BA and BS, or BS and BSEd, etc). Only one appears on the worksheet. How can I check the requirements for my other program of study?

Look at the degree information next to your name at the top of the screen. You'll notice that the degree box has a drop-down arrow. Use this to select your second program.

I am currently repeating a course, and I don’t understand how it appears on the degree audit. Can you explain this to me?

If you are repeating a course, your last attempt counts toward degree requirements. This will be the attempt that appears on your worksheet. After your second attempt is graded, the highest grade will be applied toward your requirement and the lowest grade will be placed in an "insufficient" category at the bottom of your worksheet. The courses in this area do not count toward your total hours, and they cannot be used to fulfill requirements.

Some courses on my degree audit are hyperlinked to an on line catalog, and some are not. How can I see the descriptions for all the courses in my program?

Most of the classes should be hyperlinked. Please note that there is a timing issue that compromises the accuracy of the information for future terms. Please check CatPAWS for the correct scheduling information.

I’ve seen the @ symbol in several places on my worksheet. What does this mean?

This is a wild card in Degree Audit. If the @ sign appears with course numbers after it (i.e., @ 300:599), it means that you can take a 300-500 level course from any subject area. If it appears after a subject prefix (i.e., PSYC @), it means that you can take any Psychology course.

What does the “Process New” button do?

The "Process New" button refreshes a student record once changes have been made in Degree Audit.

What does the double tilde mean?

The double tilde means that intervention is needed by the advisor because Degree Audit cannot resolve a question.

I have completed all my General Education requirements, but the audit does not have the box checked and indicates that I still need additional hours. What should I do?

You will need to contact the Registrar's office because the hours will need to be changed manually.

Which GPA is used for the graduation calculator?

The overall GPA is used.

How can I get my undergraduate GPA if I am a graduate student?

Simply do a what-if and change the level to an undergraduate.

The What-If option for graduates show my 3.00 GPA has been met but I haven’t completed any graduate coursework?

The what-If option pulls your GPA from your undergraduate record.  When you are accepted into a graduate program your degree audit will pull your GPA from your graduate coursework only.

Where can I get more information about how to use Degree Audit?

If you have questions or suggestions, please contact Registrar's Office/Graduate Office.

Who should I contact if I still have questions?

Your first point of contact should be your academic advisor. If you still have questions after that meeting, contact the Registrar's Office/Graduate Office.