Academic Progress FAQ

Q: Where can I get help in a course I am struggling with? 

A: The Campus Learning Center has tutoring for students from General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Quantitative Analysis, and Biochemistry. Check their Drop-in Schedule for exact times. You can also schedule individual appointments.

Q: What are the course grade requirements for chemistry courses if I am a chemistry major?

A: You should always strive to get the best grades possible in all of your courses. You need to have, at the time of graduation, at least a 2.0 GPA in your chemistry courses and all other courses counted in your GPA at VCU to graduate with a degree in chemistry. Certain chemistry courses require that you earn a grade of C or better in one or more prerequisite courses. For example, you will not be permitted to enroll in CHEM 301 unless you have earned a grade of C or better in CHEM 101 and 102. You should check the Undergraduate Bulletin for prerequisite grade requirements for specific courses.

 Q: Do I have to get a C or better in CHEM 101 if I am going to take CHEM 102?

A: Yes. The prerequisite for CHEM 102 is CHEM 101 with a grade of C or better. In addition, the prerequisites for CHEM 301 (Organic Chemistry I) are CHEM 101 and 102, both with a C or better. Be advised that the University and the Chemistry Department checks these prerequisites very carefully.

Q: I recently earned a “D or F” in a course.  Is there a process to repeat this course?

A: The effective Undergraduate Bulletin states the following about repeated courses: A student may repeat a course in which a D or F was earned by filing a Historical Repeat Course Form at any time during a semester prior to the awarding of the undergraduate degree. This form must be filed before the last week of classes in any semester so the cumulative GPA can be adjusted at the end of that semester. It is available online here.

 Q: How many times may I repeat a course and how will it affect my Financial Aid?

A: Federal regulations now state that if repeated coursework falls under the following condition, it cannot be included in a student’s enrollment status for Title IV aid eligibility: Any course that has already been passed (D or higher) can only be taken one additional time.  Any repeated attempts after that will not be eligible for financial aid.

Please note that all coursework attempted is included in your overall Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) calculation, which is completed on an annual basis.  Students are required to meet minimum SAP requirements to remain eligible for financial aid.  The SAP guidelines for eligibility can be found on the Financial Aid website at