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Courses and classes

Please see the page on courses and schedules in the study program section

Grades are determined by the performance on the assessments that are specified in the course syllabus.  What type of performance –such as percent score– translates into which grades is typically specified in the syllabus fo a course.

The grading scale below is used (with corresponding ECTS / international grades)

Performance UW/ Polish grades ECTS/ International grades
Excellent 5! A+
Very good 5 A
Better than good 4.5 B
Good 4 C
Satisfactory 3.5 D
Sufficient 3 E
Not sufficient / Fail 2 F

In rare cases a pass/fail mark is issued for courses, without assigning a numerical grade.

Grades of courses should be announced through the USOS system the latest one week after the end of the exam session. For courses taught by visiting professors, or courses of which the final assessment is before the end of the semester, grades should be announced three weeks after the last assessment was due.

Students have the right to receive feedback about their work and grades.

In case of severe issues related to circumstances influencing the assessment or in case of partiality of an instructor leading to an inaccurate assessment, a student has the possibility to appeal to the Dean of Student Affairs within seven days from the date the results of the assessment were announced. If the appeal is granted, within seven days an oral assessment will be conducted in front of an examination board.

Receiving a passing grade is a condition for receiving course credit.

ECTS stands for European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System, a standard of academic credit in the European Union. One ECTS credit represents a workload of 25 to 30 hours. On academic year corresponds to 60 ECTS credits.

In case you will be absent during a test, quiz, presentation, or miss the deadline of a paper or coursework because of being incapacitated:

  • Inform the instructor as soon as you know you will be absent or miss a deadline (best by email)
  • Present documentation of the justification of your absence once you return
  • Ask about the resolution to the missed test or deadline

In case you will be absent on an exam or retake-exam (so for an obligatory lecture)

  • Inform the WISP office no later than on the day of the exam (best by email)
  • Present the proof of justification of absence within seven days after the period of justified absence ended

In case of missed exams or re-take exams because of a justified absence, additional dates for an exam can be set outside of the foreseen terms only with the approval of the Dean for Student Affairs.

 

If because of circumstance you will be absent for a prolonged period of time, please consult the section Gap year/ study leave

If it happens that a course is cancelled, students will receive the opportunity to register for an alternative course.

Courses can be cancelled before the start of the semester in case there is very low student interest in a course, and the course does not reach a minimal number of enrollment. This mainly applies to elective courses, as obligatory courses and specialization courses are part of a fixed program that must be offered.

In rare cases a course can be canceled or partly cancelled because of circumstances. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic some practical courses planned to take place in clinics had to be cancelled, for example. Is such cases a solution is sought to ensure students will not be delayed in their study progress or graduation.

It can happen that due to unforseen circumestances a class is cancelled or classes of a course are rescheduled.

Strudents enrolled in a course affected by this will be informed by email by the WISP office or by the instructor directly. As soon as possible a suitable alternative date will be scheduled. In case the new timing for the course classes coincides with other obligations, students are allowed to unregister from the course when the change was announced, even after the start of the course.

The information below does not apply to exchange students – see the section for exchange students.

For practical guidance on course registration, see this [manual on course registration].

Students need to register for the following types of courses by themselves:

  • Obligatory in case there are multiple groups: seminars and trainings.
  • Elective courses: applies to students of all years
  • Specialization courses: applies to students of years four and five.

Non-WISP courses:

  • OGUNs (non-psychology courses organized by different University faculties)
  • Language courses and exams
  • PE classes

Course registrations is organized in multiple rounds, that have a set day and time of starting and ending. Courses often have limited capacity, which makes timely registration important.

 

Registering for WISP courses

The course registration procedure is divided in four rounds. During the first three terms students can register and unregister from courses, during the fourth round unregistering is not possible.

For elective courses, in the first round students can only register for up to two courses. This is to prevent that some students register very quickly for many courses and by doing so block places for other students. Registration for specialization courses is not limited.

In the second, third and fourth round of registration there are no limits to the courses one can register for.

The precise dates of the rounds of registration differs slightly from year to year; the following information is gives a general indication but specific dates will be communicated once the time is there.

Registration for courses of the winter semester:

  1. First round: first half of June
  2. Second round: second half of June
  3. Third round: Mid-September
  4. Fourth round Mid to late September

Registration for courses of the summer semester:

  1. First round: First half of December
  2. Second round: Second half of December
  3. Third round: Mid-January
  4. Fourth round Late January

The registration for different types of courses slightly differs:

 

Obligatory courses

Students are registered by the office for courses that are obligatory for them and of which there is only one group – this is typically the case for lectures. For obligatory seminars and trainings (“class” format) students must register themselves during one of the rounds of registration. Students not registering by themselves in the end will be added to a group in which there is still place. Registering on time is a good idea as it allows you to choose the time/ day of your class. No tokens are needed for registration to obligatory courses

 

Elective courses

Registration to elective courses is limited in several ways. As mentioned before, in the first round of registration only up to two elective courses can be chosen. In addition, elective courses are typically dedicated to certain years of study, depending on the prior knowledge that is required in order to take the course. This means that students are only supposed to register for courses that are open for her / his year of study. A second reason why elective courses are not open to all is that depending on their year of study, students greatly differ in the amount of knowledge and expertise they possess. If these differences are very big within a classroom this often has a negative impact on the way students experience class interactions. As a result, it thus may happen that a higher year student should not enrol for a relatively basic course. In such a situation a student can write a request to the director of studies to be allowed to take the course however. This is not the case for a younger year’s student wanting to take an advanced course, unless the student has completed the required prior courses somehow. Incorrectly enrolling results in being removed from the course at a later moment.

 

Specialization courses

Students are registered to all courses of their specialization by the office, in order to guarantee them a place. During the first three rounds of registration students can unregister if they wish.

 

Registering for non-WISP courses

Courses offered by other units than WISP will have a different organization of registration, with different dates and different rounds. OGUN’s, PE classes, language courses, language exams and courses for foreigners organized by Polonicum each have their own sort of tokens (comparable to registration credit). Students will receive sufficient tokens to fulfil the requirements of the study program at the start of their studies.

Information about the dates of the rounds of registration for each of these courses is sent by email at the relevant time.

In order to pass a course, you must fulfill all requirements for passing. Typically this means that you should have attended classes and that you have a passing grade for the course. The detailed requirements for passing a course are described in the course syllabus.

Attendance

The attendance requirements for passing courses can differ substantially depending on the type of course and on the unit organizing the course.

For nearly all WISP courses regular attendance is required. The number of absences allowed is limited; a distinction is typically made between absences that are justified (illness, extreme life events, etc) and absences that are not justified. Training courses (course type “class”) generally have stricter attendance requirements than for instance seminars and lectures. This distinction is related to how central the class activity is to realizing the learning outcomes of the course. Exceeding the limit of absences, results in not passing a course. The precise attendance requirements for each course are described in the course syllabus.

For courses organized by other units of the University attendance rules may be strict (language courses, physical education), or not (some OGUN courses have no requirements). Make sure you read about the precise rules in the course description, or ask the instructor.

To excuse an absence, you typically need to have a proof of justification. In case of medical justification, a doctor’s note is needed, called “zaświadczenie lekarskie,” or on a “ZLA” (applicable to those with employment). In case the reason of absence is not medical in nature, certain extreme life situations are taken into consideration (weddings and funerals of close ones, for instance). Documentation must be shown to the instructors of the courses during which you were absent.

For absences on an exam or test, read below in the section on exams, tests and other course work.

 

Exams, tests and other course work

Most courses will have an exam, test or other graded course work that needs to be completed satisfactorily. The elements of assessment/ grading are specified in the course description, including their relative weight, in case there are multiple elements of assessment. Read the course description carefully to see how the final grade will be determined. Sometimes it is required that multiple parts of the assessment must be passed with a positive grade; in this situation an unsatisfactory performance on one test cannot be made up with a good performance on a second.

Technically only obligatory lectures have an “exam”. Most other courses also have a final test, but formally these are not called an exam. This distinction is relevant as

  1. Exams are scheduled in the official exam session
  2. There will be a formal retake exam in the re-take session
  3. In the academic records separate grades are included for the exam and the retake exam

All other courses (obligatory courses that are not lectures, all electives and specialization courses) do not have a formal “exam”. This means that the assessment of these courses takes place during regular class time. Most courses have a test during the last scheduled class. Often courses have additional assessment components during the semesters however, such as papers, presentations, quizzes, tests or other assignments.

Absences on tests or exams must be formally justified; otherwise a score of zero will be counted. Also, missing deadlines of papers or course work without formal justification typically leads to a null score (unless the course description specifies a different policy for late work). For more information see the section on absences.

 

Not passing a course

Academic consequences

The consequences of not passing a course depend on the course type. Obligatory courses must be passed in order to complete the program of studies, and so obligatory courses that were not passed must be repeated the year after. In this situation typically the year of studies will also not be passed, which can have further consequences. For details about this please refer to the section on “passing your year of studies”.

For specialization courses it may be needed to repeat the course if not passed, for instance in case it would otherwise not be possible to complete the specialization or in case the course is needed for access to follow-up courses. Elective and OGUN courses typically do not need to be repeated; credits from elective courses are needed for study progress, but credits can be gathered from many different courses, making it unlikely that the same elective must be repeated if not passed.

When a course is not passed, then a fail grade 2 is written into the records, or in case of lack of attendance or non-completion of all assessments no grade is written. An absence of a grade is regarded as a “2” when calculating the Grade Point Average. With elective, OGUN and specialization courses a student can choose whether to link the course to a stage of studies or not and so can exclude a course not passed from the record (see more about this in the section on “Linking”).

Financial consequences (this does not apply to (Erasmus) exchange or visiting students)

Not passing a course leads to a financial fee which is typically 10 PLN per course hour (so 300 PLN for a 30-hour course) and is typically charged at the moment the course is not passed (for a detailed overview see the section on “payments and fees”). The reason is that tuition fee is set based on the assumption that students will complete 300 ECTS during their studies. When enrolling for a course but not passing, a student must repeat or enroll in additional courses in order to gather 300 ECTS. The result is that a student will then need to be registered for more than 300 ECTS of courses, and so in excess of the original study plan. To partly cover these additional expenses, and to discourage students to give up on courses too easily, a fee is charged when a course is not passed (note that this is true for the entire University, also for study programs that are free of charge). This also motivates to choose carefully when registering for courses, and prevent situations in which some students might register for many courses, and choose only to complete some of the most interesting ones. In such case such students would block a space in the courses they do not complete that could otherwise have been taken by someone else.

The word “exam” has a particular meaning; only courses in the form of an obligatory lecture (see program of studies) have a formal exam. This exam is scheduled in the exam session (though exceptions are made for compressed courses taught by visiting professors), and a retake exam is schedule in the formal retake session.

In no circumstances can a retake or make-up possibility compensate for absences (though make-up work may be demanded for absences within the permitted limit set in the course description).

 

For obligatory lectures

Retake exams are organized in the re-sit session only for obligatory lectures (so not for Logic, Experimental Psychology, Standardized Diagnostic Methods, Stats II and III, Psychological interviewing, etc). Also, elective and specialization courses will not have a retake exam or test in the re-sit session.

For courses that have a lecture and another (seminar or training) component, there is not necessarily a possibility to retake or make up parts of the assessment of the seminar or training.

Those not passing an exam in first instance have the right to participate in the retake exam. Note that both the initial grade and the grade of the retake are included in the academic records independently; it is thus not possible to “increase” an initial grade; both count towards the GPA.

The formal re-sit session is some time in March for courses of the first semester and during the first two weeks of September for courses of the second semester. The dates of the re-sit session are the same for the whole University and cannot be changed by WISP. Especially for those with retakes in September, take this into consideration when planning travels and other summer activities.

 

For courses that are not obligatory lectures

Courses that are not obligatory lectures do not have a formal exam, even if the format of assessment may be identical to an exam of an obligatory course. This may seem a bit curious, but results from regulation applying to the entire University.

This means that most courses will have assessment that take place before the formal exam session (exceptions are made sometimes for visiting professors if it is not possible to schedule their teaching during the regular semester weeks). There is no formal retake exam or make-up possibility for elective and specialization courses or for obligatory courses that are not a lecture. This means that for some courses, it is not possible to make up for an insufficient grade. However, most instructors will organize a possibility to make up for a negative grade in some way, but they have no obligation to do this.

This make-up possibility must be completed by the end of the regular semester (this is by the end of the regular exam session, and so not during the retake exam session). All instructors must announce students’ final grades to the administration shortly after the end of the exam session; they are not able to grant extensions to students.

Students will only receive one final grade (unlike with a formal retake, which has a separate grade). If the course was not passed in first instance, this grade typically will be the average of the initial non-passing grade and the grade obtained after successfully completing the make-up assessment. The reason is that as there is only one final grade the initial insufficient performance should somehow be included in, or have an influence on, the final grade.

Students must respect the principles of academic integrity. Academic integrity includes issues such as cheating and plagiarism, research ethics, and the respectful treatment of others in the academic communitiy. Not abiding by the principles of academic integrity are (serious) violations that are punishable and an can potentially lead to expulsion from the University.

 

Cheating

Cheating is a form of deception by which one typically presents information, knowlede or skill of which oneself is not the author or source. This include, but is not limited to:

  • copying of the work of other students OR letting another student copy
  • using notes, books, phone or other resource during a test or exam where this is not allowed
  • having another person completing work and presenting is as one’s own
  • falsying information
  • collaborating on an exam or work of assessment that is supposed to be completed indiviudally
  • completing an exam for another person
  • inappropriately getting acces to exam information

 

Plagiarism

Plagiarism is the use of information from a course without giving due credit. Most commonly this is understood as copying text from a source (book, article, paper, internet, etc.) and presenting it as original work – so withoug mentioning the true source of information. Though some acts of plagiarism are blatant and intentional, often plagiarism is commited because of a lack of awareness of because of carelessness.

For more information about plagiarism, consult the guidlines set by APA: https://apastyle.apa.org/style-grammar-guidelines/citations/plagiarism

To ensure you cite sources appropriately, see:

In case of doubt, inform with an instructor.

 

Research ethics

Students should behave ethically when conducting research. This applies to matters of interaction with research participants, processing of (personal) information and respescing intellectual property rules. For more detailed information see chapter 8 of the APA guidelines of conduct for psychologists: https://www.apa.org/ethics/code/ethics-code-2017.pdf

 

General principles of academic conduct

Students and staff are entitle to be treated with respect and are expcted to treat others with respect. Acts of discriminations, sexual harassment, mobbing are not acceptable. The University community and WISP in particular is diverse. Student are required to behave respectfulle and with due sensitivity towards others.