Policies & Procedures – Master’s Programs

Students enrolled in Online Engineering Programs must conform to University, School, and Program requirements and regulations. Links to GW and Online Engineering Programs academic policies appear below.

Academic and Graduation Requirements

To meet graduation requirements, students must complete their degree program with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. Throughout the program, any student whose cumulative GPA drops below 3.0 will be placed on academic probation. While on probation  a student must maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher for any courses completed in any session afterward. If this GPA requirement is not met, their enrollment will be terminated. Probation will be lifted once the student’s cumulative GPA meets 3.0 or higher. Furthermore, any student that receives three grades below (B-) will be terminated.

Academic Integrity

All Online Engineering students must be familiar with and abide by the following provisions: GW Code of Student ConductCode of Academic Integrity, and Online Engineering Student Code of Conduct.


Admission to The GWU Online Engineering Programs is selective. Meeting minimum requirements does not guarantee admission. When offered admission, it is only valid to start in that session. Admission deferrals are not permitted. If you cannot begin in the session you were admitted, you must reapply for admission. No more than two admission decisions will be rendered for any one person. Whether the application for readmission is submitted because an applicant does not enroll in the session admitted, a student interrupts continuous enrollment, or a student is placed repeatedly on financial hold preventing registration. Students denied admission should not reapply unless circumstances have changed considerably. Denials of admission are generally upheld on reapplication.


Live class sessions are held once a week through Zoom. Attendance is optional but encouraged. Live class sessions are recorded for further review and posted within a few hours of the class meeting. Recorded sessions remain available until the end of the semester.

Book Policy

Digital textbooks are provided at no additional cost to students who are in good academic and financial standing within the University each semester. Please note, we strive to provide digital textbooks that can be read online in their entirety. Some eBooks have restrictions such as access only while online, limitations to downloading and printing, etc. Students always have the option to purchase their own book. 

Communication with the Office

Online Engineering faculty, advisors, and staff support our students primarily by email. This is the most effective form of communication. There are several reasons for this:

  • Written communication ensures that we are clear, thorough, efficient, and consistent.
  • Just as online study allows students to schedule school around their work and family responsibilities, email gives them the same flexibility over time and distance.
  • Students should expect a written response within one business day.

You can always reach us about our programs at: [email protected]

Should you require immediate technical assistance, contact Technical Support:

Course Assignment and Registration

Our programs are designed with fixed curricula based on input from academic and industry experts. Our faculty advisors meet at the beginning of every session to review student progress and grades to determine the best academic path toward degree completion. This evaluation is based on the individual circumstances of each student. Courses are assigned to individual students and course schedule is communicated via email.

To provide our students the best experience possible, the Online Engineering Programs Office registers every student in their assigned courses. This allows students to progress through the program smoothly and complete their degree in a timely manner. 

Once students receive their assigned courses for the following semester, they may request that they be registered for an additional course during any session. This is referred to as a “double-up" course. These requests are handled on a first-come, first-serve basis (based on availability). Double-up courses are assigned utilizing the same procedure as stated above. Students can only take one double-up course per session, no "triple-ups" are allowed. Students must have a 3.0 GPA to request a double-up course. A student under academic probation will not be allowed to double-up. The double-up course cannot be used to replace a student’s originally assigned course. 

  • Approximately 60 days prior to the start of each semester, students will receive a registration notice. Registration notices include information on the next course in their program as well as the exact date registration dates.
  • On the registration date, approximately two to three weeks before classes begin, students in good academic and financial standing are registered for classes.
Grade Grievance

All grade disputes must be submitted in writing to the office within 30 days following the conclusion of the course whose grade is being contested.

GW Bulletin

The GW Bulletin provides University and School academic regulations. Any Online Engineering Programs academic regulations that supplement those in the Bulletin will be published on this website.

Leave of Absence

Students in an online degree program are expected to be continuously enrolled in the program until a degree is conferred. A degree student who finds it necessary to interrupt active pursuit of the degree may petition the Online Engineering Programs office for a leave of absence. Petitions are submitted by emailing a full explanation and any supporting documentation to [email protected]. Petitions are typically answered within two work weeks.

Master’s degree seeking students are generally permitted no more than two 9-week session leaves of absence. 

Students facing extenuating circumstances such as medical or active duty deployment may request additional leaves of absence by providing proper documentation.

Reviewing Your Student Account for Holds

At least once per semester students should check to make sure that they do not have any holds on their record that will prevent registration. For more information contact the Office of the Registrar.


The standard schedule for online classes is:

  • Spring-1 (Early Jan—Mid Mar)
  • Spring-2 (Late Mar—Mid May)
  • Summer (Late May—Late June)*
  • Fall-1 (Mid Aug—Mid Oct)
  • Fall-2 (Late Oct—Mid Dec)

*Optional five-week accelerated session (classes meet two nights per week).  Summer schedules will be communicated to all students via email.   reply is required to reserve space in a Summer course.

Students usually take one course per nine-week session.  Students with a GPA above 3.0 may choose to double up and take up to two courses in any of the standard nine-week sessions.  Students under academic probation will not be allowed to double-up.

Course order is determined by faculty advisors.  See the 'Course Assignment and Registration' section for more details.

Time Limits

Students in an Online Engineering Master’s Program are allowed a maximum of four calendar years to complete the degree requirements. This four year period begins from the date of first registration as a degree candidate. Students who do not complete degree requirements within the allowed time will have their degree candidate status terminated. Courses taken outside the time limit will not be applied toward the degree.

Transfer of Credit

Academic credit earned at another institution will not be transferred into any graduate program offered through the Online Engineering Programs office.

Withdrawals, Refunds, and Incomplete

All drop requests must come to the Online Engineering Programs office. Please email your request to [email protected]

Students may drop from courses through the Friday of the week of the second class meeting without any academic or financial penalty. After that time, students may drop through the Friday of the week of the eighth class meeting. Students will then receive a designation of “W” (withdrawal) and are responsible for full tuition. 

Students who cannot complete a course due to extenuating circumstances (i.e. personal or immediate family medical emergency or deployment to active combat) may request an incomplete through 5 pm ET on Friday of the last week of class with proper documentation.