Jun 20, 2024  
2022-2023 Catalog 
2022-2023 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academic Standards

Students are expected to attend all classes, laboratories, and shops as scheduled unless there is a compelling reason to be absent.

Maximum Course Load

Fifteen (15) credit hours is considered to be the standard course load for a student enrolled in a given semester. This will vary however by degree and/or certificate and whether a student is a full-time or part-time student. Twelve (12) credit hours is considered the minimum for full-time enrollment in a given semester, and anything below 12 credit hours is considered part-time enrollment. The maximum course load that a student can enroll in on their own without restriction is 18 credit hours. Any student who wants to enroll in more than 18 credit hours and up to 21 credit hours in a given semester can receive an override on the maximum credit hour restriction from an academic advisor in Advising & Testing, provided the student has a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher in college level course work. Any student seeking to enroll in more than 21 credit hours and up to 24 credit hours in a given semester must receive Academic Dean permission. For any student wanting to enroll in more than 24 hours in a given semester the permission of the Vice President for Instructional Services is required.

Certain career and technical programs approved by the State Board for Community Colleges and Occupational Education may require students to enroll in up to 24 credit hours per semester. For such programs, students will be allowed to enroll in all necessary courses.

Student workload for a course should be estimated according to the following formula: Two hours of outside preparation for every one hour of lecture and one hour of outside preparation for every two to three hours of laboratory time. Any course syllabus that indicates different preparation times than these takes precedence over this general instruction.

Change of Major/Program

Students may declare and/or change a program of study at any time during the term in which they are enrolled. Prior to changing their major, students are strongly encouraged to meet with an academic advisor in the Advising & Testing office and the Financial Aid Office to discuss the impact changing a course of study will have on an educational plan. A change in major places students under the academic and curriculum requirements of their new program as published in the current college catalog. The form can be found at www.pikespeak.edu/records/change-of-major.

Credit by Examination

Students may take a comprehensive examination for credit if they are enrolled in a course and have the approval of their instructor and dean. Students must complete the examination by the census date for the course and will receive the grade earned on the examination as a final grade for the course. Students may attempt a test-out only once per course.

Transfer to PPSC

All credits earned at regionally accredited colleges or universities, including PPSC, or other approved educational institutions may be applied toward fulfilling PPSC program requirements. Transferability of credit is based on the following conditions:

  • Credits must have been earned within 15 years prior to admission to PPSC.
  • Courses in which a grade of C- or above was earned will be accepted in transfer when the courses are applicable to PPSC programs and in accordance with PPSC requirements. Credit will be transferred only from an official transcript from the originating institution.

Students who have credits they wish to transfer to PPSC that can replace a substandard grade earned at PPSC must see an advisor to initiate that request. If approved, this will result in the points associated with that grade being excluded from the student’s cumulative GPA. The grade earned at PPSC will still appear on the student’s official transcripts. Other institutions receiving a PPSC transcript for transfer of academic courses are not bound by this college policy and may choose to calculate the student’s transfer GPA to include all grades, even those excluded by PPSC under this policy.

International Transcript Evaluations

Students who have attended international institutions and want their credits evaluated for transfer must first have the international transcripts evaluated by a recognized member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) and have an official copy of their course-by-course credit evaluation report sent directly to Pikes Peak State College (PPSC). Students who plan to study a program at PPSC similar to what they studied at their former international institution, might be able to transfer some credits from that program to their new program at PPSC. Not all credits will transfer. Transferability of credit is based on the following conditions:

  • The courses taken at an international institution must be comparable to what we offer at PPSC to be accepted for transfer.
  • College credits must have been earned within 15 years prior to admission to PPSC.
  • PPSC only accepts college-level courses with a grade of C or better.
  • Students may also be required to provide English-translated course descriptions for courses that they wish to have transferred.

Steps to transferring in college credits:

Step 1: Apply for PPSC admissions.
Step 2: Declare a degree or certificate program.
Step 3: Submit an official copy of the NACES course-by-course evaluation report to the PPSC Records Office located at the Centennial Campus. Official copy must be in a sealed envelope from the evaluation service - do not open it.

Students may also request to have the evaluation sent directly to:

Pikes Peak State College
Attn: Records Office, Box C-8
5675 S. Academy Blvd.
Colorado Springs, CO 80906

The Records Office will determine if PPSC can transfer some of your credits to a PPSC degree program.

A complete list of approved NACES members can be found at www.naces.org.

Below are recommended evaluation services for a course-by-course evaluation of your international educational record.

Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.
Phone: (414) 289-3400
Website: www.ece.org
Email: eval@ece.org

World Education Services
Phone: (212) 966-6311
Website: www.wes.org

Josef Silny & Associates
Phone: (305) 273-1616
Website: www.jsilny.com

Transcript Requests

PPSC has partnered with Parchment to manage the ordering, processing, and secure delivery of official student transcripts. Students may request copies of their official transcripts from PPSC by filling out a transcript request form. The transcript cost is based on the method of delivery and destination. During the ordering process you will be able to see the exact charge prior to entering your credit card information. Transcripts are not released until all accounts with PPSC are current. Transcript request instructions and costs can be found online at www.pikespeak.edu/records/request-transcripts.

Grading System


This procedure applies to the Colorado Community College System, including its Colleges (CCCS or System).


This procedure establishes System-wide standards for grading, repeating courses, terms dates, credits in residence and honors designations.


Attempted Grades: Grades for a course in which a student enrolled and attempted to complete.

Developmental Education: Courses beginning with the digit “0” designed to enhance students’ skills in Math, English, or other academic fields.

Developmental Grades: Grades for Developmental Education courses.

Earned Grades: Grades for a course that has been completed by a student.

GPA: Grade Point Average on a 4.0 scale.

Hours in Residence: These are credit hours completed at an institution or within a system.


Common Grading Symbols:

In order to standardize grading across the System, Colleges will use grades from a shared set of grading symbols. The full list of grades and symbols may or may not be used by all Colleges, but all grades issued by Colleges must be from the list below:

Grade      Quality Points        Interpretation

 A                  4                      Excellent or Superior

 B                  3                      Good (Above Average Achievement)

 C                  2                      Average

 D                  1                      Deficient

 F                  0                      Failure Incomplete

 I                                           Incomplete (Rolls to an F if not completed within required time period)

Note: In order to be eligible for an incomplete, a student is required to have completed over 75% of the coursework with a ‘C’ or better and must finish the coursework by the end of the next term, excluding summer. Colleges may make exceptions on a case-by-case basis.

Pass/Fail Grades:

P - Pass

F - Fail

A request for the P/F option must be submitted to the registration office. The P/F option may not be appropriate for courses.

College catalogs should identify the maximum number of P/F credits that may be applied to a degree or certificate.

A “P” grade will indicate that the quality of students’ work in the course is equivalent to “C or better.” “P” will count in attempted and earned credits but will not carry any quality points. Therefore, “P” grades will not be included in GPA calculations, however “F” grades will.

Developmental Grades:

P/A - Passing (A-level) work in a developmental course

P/B - Passing (B-level) work in a developmental course

P/C - Passing (C-level) work in a developmental course

F/D - Not-passing (D-level) work in a developmental course

F/F - Not-passing (F-level) work in a developmental course

I/F - Incomplete for developmental courses (Rolls to F/F if not completed within required time period)

Developmental Grades will not be included in a student’s GPA or count towards attempted credits. GPAs for term recognition such as President’s List, Vice President’s List and Dean’s List will not include developmental course grades in the calculation.

In order to be eligible for an incomplete, a student is required to have completed over 75% of the coursework with a ‘P/C’ or better and must finish the coursework by the end of the next term, excluding summer. Colleges may make exceptions on a case-by-case basis.

Withdrawal Grades:

W - Withdrawal - Student was withdrawn at their request after drop deadline, but prior to withdrawal deadline.

WX - Student was administratively withdrawn through appeal, no fault, etc.

WD - Student was administratively withdrawn for cause.

Transfer Grades:

A* - Transfer equivalent to an “A” standard grade

B* - Transfer equivalent to a “B” standard grade

C* - Transfer equivalent to a “C” standard grade

D* - Transfer equivalent to a “D” standard grade

F* - Transfer equivalent to an “F” standard grade

S* - Transfer equivalent to an “S” standard grade

P* - Transfer equivalent to a “P” standard grade

“C” or better grades will be accepted in transfer. Colleges may choose to transfer “D” grades on a case-by-case basis. Colleges will determine by program whether a “D” grade may be used to meet degree or certificate requirements. Even if a CCCS College accepts a D grade in transfer, it may nullify certain transfer agreements and does not guarantee that it will be accepted at other institutions of higher education. Satisfactory grades, “S” may be considered “P” grades for transfer purposes.

Other Grade Codes

*              Transfer Grade

AU            Audit

AW           Administrative Withdrawal (Prior to Summer 2021)

CNV         No Grade (Used for High School Level classes only)

CPL         Credit awarded through Credit for Prior Learning (Prior to Fall 2015)

CR           Credit

IP             In Progress

NC           No Credit

PLA          Prior Learning Assessment (Effective Fall 2015)

S              Satisfactory (Prior to Summer 2021)

S/A          Satisfactory (A-level) work in a developmental course (Prior to Summer 2021)

S/B          Satisfactory (B-level) work in a developmental course (Prior to Summer 2021)

S/C          Satisfactory (C-level) work in a developmental course (Prior to Summer 2021)

SP           Satisfactory Progress (Prior to Summer 2021)

U              Unsatisfactory (Prior to Summer 2021)

U/D         Unsatisfactory (D-level) work in a developmental course (Prior to Summer 2021)

U/F          Unsatisfactory (F-level) work in a developmental course (Prior to Summer 2021)

W             Withdrawal

Z              Grade not yet reported

AU - Audit

By auditing a course, a student may participate in course activities, but does not receive a formal transcript grade. Students must indicate intent to audit a course at registration or by the deadline listed in the course schedule. Audited courses are not eligible for the College Opportunity Fund stipend. Students will be responsible for the full in-state or out-of-state tuition. Audited courses do not meet the credit hour requirements for financial aid or veteran benefits and may not be applied to certificates or degrees.

CPL - Prior Learning Credit

A symbol of “CPL” indicates that the course and credits to which it is attached were awarded according to BP 9-42, Credit for Prior Learning.

I - Incomplete

The Incomplete grade is a temporary grade and is designed for students who, because of documented illness or circumstances beyond their control, are unable to complete their course work within the semester but have completed a majority of the course work (defined as at least 75 percent of all course assignments and tests) in a satisfactory manner (grade C or better).

If circumstances beyond the student’s control prevent the student from completing a test or assignments at the end of the term, then it is the student’s responsibility to initiate the request for an Incomplete grade from the instructor. The instructor will determine whether the student has a reasonable chance of satisfactorily completing the remaining course activities in a timely manner.

In requesting an Incomplete grade, the student must present to the instructor the documentation of circumstances justifying an Incomplete grade.

The instructor will complete and sign an Incomplete Grade Contract and will submit it to Student Services with final grades for the semester. The instructor must assign an incomplete grade on the regular grade roster in a timely fashion.

Incomplete Grade Contract must include the following information:

  1. Student Name (F, MI, L)
  2. Student ID #
  3. Course Number and Section
  4. Reason for assigning a grade of incomplete (statement of extenuating circumstances)
  5. Work to be completed for removal of incomplete grade (instructor should be very specific including the work to be done and how the final grade is to be calculated)
  6. Evidence of completion of 75 percent of the semester course work
  7. Completion of a work plan that includes the following
    • What, when and how assignments and tests will be submitted to complete the course,
    • The time period in which the work must be completed.
  8. Instructor Signature and Date
  9. Student Signature and Date

Students are encouraged to let instructors know, as soon as possible, if they are having difficulties with any part of the course. In the event that a student and instructor cannot reach resolution concerning an Incomplete, then the student should contact the Chief Instructional Officer of the College.

Military personnel and emergency management officials who are required to go TDY in the middle of a term should contact their instructor for special consideration. Documentation of official TDY assignment is required and must be approved by the Chief Instructional Officer.

Active-Duty exception: The Department of Defense requires all Incomplete Grades assigned in classes funded through Tuition Assistance to receive a final grade and have it reported to the respective branch of service within 120 days from the end of term date.

Incomplete grades which are not converted to a letter grade by the instructor after one subsequent semester (not including summer semester) will revert to an F grade. If the student would have earned a letter grade higher than an F without completing the work, faculty should be encouraged to submit that higher grade before the automatic conversion to F.

PLA - Prior Learning Assessment

A symbol of “PLA” indicates that the course and credits to which it is attached were awarded according to BP 9-42, Prior Learning Assessment.

P/A, P/B, P/C

These are pass grades awarded only for developmental courses. The A, B, and C indicate the level of satisfactory/pass performance. These grades are not included in the GPA calculation. The course will count for attempted and earned credits.

F/D, F/F

These are fail grades awarded only for developmental courses. The D and F indicate the level of unsatisfactory/fail performance. These grades are not included in the GPA calculation. The course will count in attempted credits but will not carry earned credits.

S - Satisfactory/ P - Pass

The satisfactory/pass grade is equivalent to a grade of “C or better.” The course will count in attempted and earned credits but will not carry quality points.

U - Unsatisfactory/F - Fail

The unsatisfactory/fail grade is equivalent to a “D” or “F” grade. The course will count in attempted credits but will not carry earned credits or quality points.

SP - Satisfactory Progress

This symbol is limited to certain approved courses that extend beyond the end of a normal semester. No academic credit is awarded until the course is completed.

W - Withdrawal

The “Withdrawal” grade is assigned when a student officially withdraws from a course. A withdrawal can only be processed during the first 80 percent of the course. No academic credit is awarded. The course will count in attempted hours.

WD, WX - Administrative Withdrawal

This “withdrawal” grade is assigned by the College when a student has been withdrawn for administrative reasons. No academic credit is awarded. The course will count in attempted hours.

Z - No Grade Submitted

The grade of “Z” is a temporary grade entered by the Registrar when a grade is not received from the course instructor. This “Z” grade is replaced, and credit is awarded upon the Registrar’s receipt of the grade.

Last Date of Attendance

Faculty are required to provide the last date of attendance for each student who is awarded an F or U/F grade.

Repeat Field

The Repeat Field on the transcript will be marked I - Include in hours and GPA calculation, A - Exclude from earned hours and GPA calculation, or A - Exclude from earned hours but count in GPA calculation.

NOTE: Courses with a grade of D or F are not generally transferable and will not transfer to other institutions under GT Pathways or the 60+60 Bachelor’s Degree Transfer program.

Grading Options

Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory / Pass/Fail: students may request to take up to six credit hours each semester on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (SU) / Pass/Fail (PF) grading basis. They may take a maximum of 15 credit hours under this grading option while enrolled at PPSC. (Credit hours earned in a course where SU / PF is the only grading standard count toward this 15-hour maximum). Students must have prior approval by the appropriate division dean for each course unless the course is only offered with the SU / PF option. This option must be requested at the time of registration. After the drop/add period, this option may not be changed except by written recommendation from the appropriate division dean and approval by the Vice President for Instructional Services. Pikes Peak State College considers a grade of C or better to be satisfactory/passing. A satisfactory/pass grade earned under this option does not affect the Grade Point Average (GPA) but increases the total number of credit hours passed. Grades of D or F will be considered unsatisfactory/failing, will affect the GPA, and will increase the total number of credit hours attempted.

Audit: students may register to audit any course by indicating this option on the registration form at the time of enrollment. The audit option is not available online. The regular tuition rate applies. After the posted drop date, students may not change their registration from credit to audit, or from audit to credit, except by written recommendation from the appropriate division dean and approval by the Vice President for Instructional Services. Audit grades do not transfer and are not computed in the GPA. Courses taken by audit do not count toward enrollment status for financial aid or veterans’ educational benefits and are not eligible for the COF stipend.

Grade Changes

A change of grade (other than from an Incomplete) is permitted only as a result of faculty/instructor or administrative error in calculating, posting, or recording a grade.

A student has one full year from the time in which the grade was issued to submit a written request for a grade reevaluation to the faculty member. The process is as follows:

Grade review with faculty/instructor. If no resolution is reached or satisfactory explanation given, then:

Review by department chair. If no resolution or satisfactory explanation, then:

Review by division dean or assistant dean. If no resolution is reached or satisfactory explanation given, then:

Review by the Vice President for Instructional Services or the appointed Assistant to the Vice President for final resolution.

An Incomplete (I) grade may be removed when the remaining class objectives are completed by the date indicated on the “Incomplete Course Agreement” form or no later than the end of the next full 15-week semester. The resulting change of grade is made by the instructor of record and is approved by the appropriate instructional division dean. Course work not completed within the allotted time will be assigned a Failing (F) grade. Students may not re-enroll in a class in which an incomplete grade is pending, since according to the College’s definition of enrollment, they are still enrolled.

How to Calculate Your GPA

Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated by dividing the total amount of grade points earned by the total amount of credit hours attempted. It may range from 0.0 to 4.0 Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) grades are not factored in the student’s GPA. Incompletes (I) or Withdrawals (W) do not receive grade points and do not have an effect on the GPA.

Repeated Courses

When a course is repeated, regardless of initial grade earned, the highest grade earned will be calculated in the GPA. However, all grades earned at PPSC will appear on the transcript. A course may be used only once to meet graduation requirements for any degree or program.

Academic Renewal


Designates parameters for Academic Renewal.


  • A maximum of 30 hours can be excluded from the GPA.
  • Courses and grades approved for Academic Renewal remain on the transcript but are excluded from the GPA calculation/s.
  • Academic Renewal applies to D, F, and U grades only.
  • In order to apply for Academic Renewal, students must wait a minimum of two academic years from the last term being considered for Academic Renewal.
  • Students must be enrolled and have completed at least 6 hours with a 2.0 term GPA to be awarded Academic Renewal. For a Reverse Transfer Degree only, the student may fulfill this requirement, by demonstrating enrollment in at least 6 credit hours with a 2.0 term GPA during last semester of attendance at the four-year institution.
  • Students can only apply for Academic Renewal once, and it is not reversible.
  • Students at Pikes Peak State College are required to meet with an academic advisor prior to submitting a request for Academic Renewal.

Academic Progress Standing


For students who have completed fewer than 9 credit hours, the college will monitor satisfactory progress through an Academic Alert process. These students are not subject to Academic Standing.

Academic Standing applies to all students who have completed 9 or more credits at a CCCS college, regardless of the number of term credits they attempt from that point forward. Academic Standing shall be applied consistently and uniformly within each CCCS institution. All colleges will determine Academic Standing following the posting of the majority of term grades for each semester. Students placed on probation or suspended will be notified of their status. Suspended students will not be allowed to attend any CCCS college in the subsequent semester/s unless an appeal is approved. Academic Standing status will be noted on the advising, official, and unofficial transcripts. The Academic Standing of a student is not specific or limited to the home institution; it does impact a student’s enrollment at other CCCS colleges.


Designates a practice for measuring and notifying students of their academic standing.


Recognizing the value of measuring academic progress for all students, the Colorado Community College System (CCCS) has established the following practice and procedures for measuring and notifying students of their academic standing. This procedure is intended to be informational and helpful, but also establishes clear standards of academic progress that must be met and maintained in order to be a successful student in our colleges. CCCS colleges are encouraged to devise and implement appropriate Academic Alert strategies early in the term to assist students who are experiencing academic difficulties. A student’s academic standing at one college will impact academic standing at another CCCS college.


Only college level classes will be used to calculate term and cumulative GPA’s. This includes summer term courses.

Only courses taken “in residence” will be used for this procedure; “In residence” means taken at the student’s home institution. Courses taken elsewhere and transferred in do not apply. The GPA calculations for this procedure may not match those used for financial aid purposes or athletic eligibility.

Cumulative Grade Point Average will be abbreviated as CGPA.

Term Grade Point Average will be abbreviated as TGPA.

Practice Standards:

Initial Standing

Student has completed fewer than 9 cumulative credit hours with a CGPA => 2.00 for all classes completed.

Academic Alert

Student has completed fewer than cumulative 9 credits with a CGPA < 2.00 for all classes completed.

Good Standing

Student has completed at least 9 cumulative credit hours and has a CGPA => 2.00 for all classes completed.


Student has completed at least 9 cumulative credit hours and has a CGPA < 2.00 for all classes completed.

Returning to Good Standing

By the conclusion of the Academic Probation term, the student must raise their CGPA to at least 2.0. If this condition is met, the student returns to Good Standing.

If a student on Academic Probation earns a TGPA of at least 2.00 for all classes completed during the term but fails to raise their CGPA to at least 2.0 for all classes completed, the student will be allowed to attend the next term but will remain on Academic Probation.


If a student on Academic Probation earns a TGPA of less than 2.0 for all classes completed, the student will be suspended and will not be allowed to enroll at any CCCS College for the next term, excluding summer term (as summer term may not be used as a “suspension term”).

Suspension Rules:

  • Summer term may not be used as a “suspension term”.
  • Summer term may be used to remediate (improve) the GPA. If a student wishes to enroll for summer term after being suspended, they will need to follow their home institution’s process.
  • Initial suspension is for one term, excluding summer term.
  • A second suspension is for two terms, excluding summer term.
  • If a student, who has served the suspension time for initial suspension or second suspension, wishes to return, the student will be allowed to re-enroll only after meeting with an academic advisor at the CCCS College that the student wishes to attend. The student will be placed on Academic Probation.
  • A third suspension is for two full years, or 4 academic terms excluding summers.
  • If a student, who has served the third suspension time of two years, wishes to return, the student must meet with an advisor from the CCCS College the student wishes to attend in order to get their suspension hold removed.

Suspension Appeals:

  • Students may appeal their suspension based on procedures developed by their home college or the CCCS College they wish to attend. At a maximum, students may appeal to their home college and to one other CCCS College of their choice.
  • If the student’s suspension appeal is approved, the student will be placed on Academic Probation.
  • If the student’s suspension appeal is not approved, the student may be dropped from all courses registered for in upcoming terms at their home college. Students are ultimately responsible for their enrollment and need to check their enrollment schedule for accuracy.
  • The student needs to check with their home college regarding enrolling for summer term classes.

PPSC Policy

At the conclusion of each semester students will receive their grades and be notified by the Registrar regarding their Academic Standing via email to their college assigned student email.

Students placed on Academic Suspension will be dropped from their classes.

For students on Academic Suspension there is an appeal process that is outlined in the notification they receive from the Registrar regarding their academic standing.

Students wishing to file an appeal for an exception to the academic suspension policy need to:

  1. Students will be required to complete an Academic Suspension Appeal Form
  2. Students will be required to write a letter of appeal
  3. Students will be required to submit a copy of their most recent unofficial transcript
  4. Students can submit any other relevant documentation, examples can be found on the Appeals page www.pikespeak.edu/appeal

The completed appeal form and supporting documents will be reviewed by the Academic Suspension Appeals Committee which includes a representative from each Instructional Division as well as Student Services. Students will be notified via their student email of the Committee’s decision regarding their request for an exception to the academic suspension policy and any conditions that apply to their reinstatement. The Academic Suspension Appeals Committee may uphold the suspension; may grant the appeal without conditions; or may grant the appeal with conditions such as limiting the number of credit hours a student may register for, or requiring a study skills class, etc. The Academic Suspension Appeals Committee’s decisions are final and may not be appealed further. There is no guarantee that a student who is granted an appeal will be allowed to re-enroll in the classes from which the student was previously dropped for being on academic suspension.

The last day to file an Academic Suspension Appeal is always the Friday just prior to the last week of registration before each semester.

Academic Concerns

Any student who wishes to pursue an instructional concern or change of grade must exhaust the following options in sequence prior to petitioning the Vice President for Instructional Services. (Examples of instructional or course concerns deal with instructor behavior, class policies, and unfair expectations or demands.)

  1. The student must meet with the instructor and attempt to resolve the problem. If no resolution:
  2. The student must state the concern in writing and meet with the Department Chair (in the case of an adjunct instructor) or Dean / Associate Dean (in the case of a faculty member). Departments may require specific documentation. Please contact the appropriate division. If no resolution:
  3. The student will meet with the Dean.

If the student contests the Dean’s decision, he/she must submit the request in writing to the Office of the Assistant to the Vice President for Instructional Services. The request should include documentation of everything that the student wants considered in the decision. The Dean will also submit all written documentation and recommendations. The Vice President for Instructional Services or a designee will notify the student of the decision in writing. This decision will be final.

Credits in Residency

A student must complete 25% of their credits in residence at the College that will confer the degree or certificate. A College may consider an appeal to award a degree or certificate to a student transferring from another CCCS College and who has not completed 25% of their credits in residence. In order to approve the appeal, the College must be able to explain and justify its decision.

Two or more CCCS Colleges may enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that would allow students to complete a degree or certificate without satisfying the 25% credits in residence requirement. The MOU must be signed by each participating College, shared with the Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs, and provided to the Higher Learning Commission.

Term Academic Honors

PPSC provides an opportunity for students to be recognized with Academic Honors, on a term-by-term basis. Students who qualify will receive a notation for that term on their official transcripts.

Term Grade Point Averages required to qualify for these Term Academic Honors, are as follows:

  Dean’s List: 3.50 - 3.749
  Vice President’s List: 3.75 - 3.99
  President’s List: 4.00

SU / PF grades and grades for Developmental Education coursework are not included in the Grade Point Average (GPA) Calculation. Students must complete a minimum of 6 eligible credit hours in the term to be considered for Term Academic Honors.

Graduation Honors

Graduation honors are awarded to students who complete the requirements for a degree and earn a 3.5 or better cumulative GPA at the College. Only college-level courses completed at the College will be included in the GPA calculation. A minimum number of 15 credits taken at PPSC is required to be eligible for graduation honors. The three levels of recognition are defined as follows and will be posted on the student’s transcript.

  Cumulative GPA
Cum Laude (with honor)   3.50 to 3.749
Magna Cum Laude (with great honor)   3.75 to 3.99
Summa Cum Laude (with highest honor)   4.00

Application for Certificate or Degree

Prior to applying for graduation, students should meet with an academic advisor in Advising and Testing or their faculty advisor to ensure that they are close to graduating. When students have verified that they are close to graduating, they must file an application for graduation. Once students have applied, their application will undergo an audit to see if they have completed all the necessary coursework. Degrees and certificates will be granted during the semester in which the final requirements are completed. Students need to apply for graduation by the published deadlines. The application for graduation and deadlines can be found at www.pikespeak.edu/academics/records/graduation/.


Mid-way through the Fall and Spring semesters, the Records Office will research records of students who have attended PPSC in the previous three semesters to identify and automatically award those who are determined to be eligible for a degree or certificate based on courses taken at PPSC. Awards will be posted at the end of the semester.

Graduation Ceremony

Each May, PPSC produces a gala graduation ceremony to honor graduating students. To participate, you must be eligible for graduation and must submit an Application for Graduation online by the deadline. Potential graduates will receive an initial letter of information about graduation from the Student Life Office. Caps, gowns, tassels and instructions on the ceremony are all available through the Bookstore. If you are eligible, join us for this festive celebration of your success! The 2023 ceremony will include eligible participants who graduated Summer 2022, Fall 2022 and anticipated graduates in Spring 2023.

Participation in the graduation ceremony does not imply that a degree has been awarded. All degree requirements must be met before a degree is awarded.

Assessment of Student Learning

Assessment is the ongoing process of establishing measurable learning outcomes, providing students with sufficient opportunities to achieve those outcomes, systematically gathering evidence of student learning, and using the resulting findings to confirm and improve student learning. PPSC’s assessment framework reflects the vision of the College as stated in the 2016-2022 Strategic Plan and aligns with regional and programmatic accreditation standards. With the guidance of Assessment Coaches, academic departments regularly assess what students know or are able to do upon completion of individual courses/programs and document how assessment results are used to continuously improve teaching and learning.

Assessment of student learning in Career and Technical Education degree programs focuses on the skills and knowledge that employers consider are most important to workplace success. Those program-level outcomes are generally driven by field competencies and industry standards. In the general education disciplines, assessment of student learning focuses on a number of essential skills also known as general education learning outcomes. In Fall 2016, PPSC voted to adopt the following statewide gtPATHWAYS competencies as its general education learning outcomes.

  • Civic Engagement - Actions wherein students participate in activities of personal and public concern that are both meaningful to the student and socially beneficial to the community.
  • Creative Thinking - Capacity to combine or synthesize existing ideas, images, or expertise in original ways and the experience of thinking, reacting, and working in an imaginative way characterized by a high degree of innovation, divergent thinking, and risk taking.
  • Critical Thinking - Ability to analyze information and ideas from multiple perspectives and articulate an argument or an opinion or a conclusion based on their analysis.
  • Diversity & Global Learning - Ability to critically analyze and engage complex, interdependent structures and constructs and their implications for individuals, groups, communities, or cultures.
  • Information/Literacy - Skills needed to find, retrieve, analyze, and use information.
  • Inquiry & Analysis - Inquiry is the systematic process of exploring issues/objects/works through the collection and analysis of evidence that results in informed conclusions/judgments. Analysis is the process of breaking complex topics or issues into parts to gain a better understanding of them.
  • Oral/Presentational Communication - Ability to deliver a well-prepared and purposeful presentation grounded in credible information and organized effectively.
  • Problem Solving - Ability to design, evaluate, and implement a strategy to answer a question or achieve a goal.
  • Quantitative Literacy - Ability to use quantifiable information and mathematical analysis to make connections and draw conclusions.
  • Written Communication - Ability to write and express ideas across a variety of genres and styles.

PPSC’s philosophy of general education aligns with the Colorado Community College System (CCCS) State Board Policy on General Education (BP 9-40) which states: “General education is ‘general’ in several clearly identifiable ways: it is not directly related to a student’s formal technical, vocational or professional preparation; it is a part of every student’s course of study, regardless of his or her area of emphasis; and it is intended to impart common knowledge, intellectual concepts, and attitudes which every educated person should possess.” PPSC values the skills and competencies that its general education curriculum provides to students, preparing them for advanced education, employment, and participation in an increasingly diverse and global society.

More information about PPSC’s assessment of student learning framework can be found at www.pikespeak.edu/about/assessment/.

Research Activities

PPSC encourages and supports the scholarly endeavors of its students. Pursuit of scholarly work and research often involves the use of human subjects for data collection and analysis. PPSC’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) reviews human subjects research proposals to ensure that i) the rights and welfare of human subjects used in research studies are protected, ii) risks have been considered and minimized, iii) the potential for benefit has been identified and maximized, iv) all human subjects only volunteer to participate in research after being provided with legally effective informed consent, and v) any research is conducted in an ethical manner and in compliance with established standards. Students seeking to conduct such research may not solicit subject participation or begin data collection until they have obtained clearance by the PPSC IRB. Forms and operating procedures are available at www.pikespeak.edu/instutitional-effectiveness/irb.

CCCS reserves the right to change any provision or requirement of this procedure at any time and the change shall become effective immediately.