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    May 25, 2024  
Draft 2024-2025 Law School Student Handbook 
    
Draft 2024-2025 Law School Student Handbook

Administrative Rules & Procedures


 

Instruction Modes

The School of Law delivers course instruction via the following modes:

Effective for the 2024-2025 Academic Year
  • Hybrid1 (In-Person/Online) (Section Code: HSF): Instruction includes a combination of in-person and online (synchronous or asynchronous) coursework. At least 20% of the instruction time must include in-person class meetings. In-person class meetings cannot be attended remotely. In-person and synchronous online class meeting dates and times are listed on the schedule and course syllabus. Satisfies “in residence” requirements for Veteran Affairs Education Benefits and residency requirements for international students (F-1 Visa holders).
  • In-Person1 (Section Codes: SF, SE): Instruction is delivered through in-person class meetings. Satisfies “in residence” requirements for Veteran Affairs Education Benefits and residency requirements for international students (F-1 Visa holders).
  • Online-Asynchronous2 (Section Code: C): Instruction is delivered primarily through asynchronous coursework but may include optional synchronous online class meetings. Does not satisfy “in residence” requirements for Veteran Affairs Education Benefits. Does not satisfy residency requirements for international students (F-1 Visa holders).
  • Online-Synchronous2 (Section Code: WC): Instruction is delivered primarily through live online class meetings but may include asynchronous coursework. Does not satisfy “in residence” units for Veteran Affairs Education Benefits. Does not satisfy residency requirements for international students (F-1 Visa holders).

1Satisfies the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs definition of a “hybrid” class for BAH benefits, so long as recipients attend the in-person class meeting(s).
2International students (F-1 Visa holders) may count a maximum of 1 course (or 3 units) of these instruction modes toward their “full course of study.”  

Registration

Most Law School students may register online using myGGU/Student Self-Service. Students who are unfamiliar with the system should contact their academic advisor or the Law Registrar’s Office for assistance. Those who do not already have an account may need to contact the IT department for more information. Some students will be precluded from using myGGU for registration for various reasons. Students who cannot use myGGU must submit a Registration Request via email to lawreg@ggu.edu.

Students on academic probation, academic supervision, or who have other registration related holds, may not use online registration until they have received academic advising. Students who have delinquent account holds must have them resolved before they may use online registration. Both the Associate Dean and Director for Student Affairs, Law School are available for individual academic advising, as described in the Counseling & Advising  section.

For current information on course selection and the courses scheduled for the upcoming semester, students should refer to the Course Schedule. The Course Schedule is made available approximately 1 to 2 weeks prior to the start of registration for the term. Registration procedures and information about the Academic Calendar, Tuition and Fees and late fees are also available on the School website.

Course descriptions and course scheduling guidelines can be found on the Course Offerings page, myGGU, and in the Course Descriptions Academic Standards , and Academic Programs  sections of this handbook.

Students will be assessed the Delinquent Registration Charges fee of $100 per semester/session if all tuition and fees are not paid in-full by the payment deadline for the term, as specified in the Academic Calendar.

Audit status is not available for GGU Law School degree-candidate students, with the exception of SJD students. 

Waitlists

When a course section is full, students who request enrollment may be placed on a waitlist for that section. Students who are placed on a waitlist are not enrolled in the course and are not charged for it unless a seat becomes available, and they add the course. Wait-listed students will be notified by e-mail if a seat in the course section becomes available. The notification will be sent to the e-mail addresses on record with the Registrar’s Office. Because there may be other students eager to enroll, a time limit will be set for the notified students to add the courses. Students who are notified of an available seat may add the course online via myGGU or email lawreg@ggu.edu indicating their desire to be enrolled in the courses. If students do not add the courses by their deadlines, the seats will be offered to the next students on the waitlists or made generally available. After the first class meeting the waitlists no longer apply and students may enroll in courses only with the instructor’s approval. The instructors can give approval by via email. When approval is obtained via email, please forward it to lawreg@ggu.edu and request to be registered for the course.

It is recommended that students on waitlists attend the first class meeting for the section. Some instructors will not accept students who have missed the first class meeting without an excused absence. Sometimes instructors will allow wait-listed students to enroll if there are additional seats available in the classroom, but other sections may be limited to a certain capacity by other considerations.

Students who are wait-listed for a course and decide they don’t want to enroll in it should notify the Registrar’s Office at lawreg@ggu.edu so they can be removed from the list.

Fulfilling Course Requirements

Students are expected to complete all course requirements in a timely fashion. Except as provided below, each student enrolled in a course for which there is a final examination is required to take the examination at the time it is scheduled. If the course requirements include a paper, a series of papers, or reports, each student is required to submit such assignments at the time(s) specified by the instructor.

Students who do not take the final exam or who fail to complete all course requirements on time without first having officially withdrawn from the course, successfully petitioned for an incomplete, rescheduled the exam, or obtained permission for an extension of deadline, will receive a “WF” (Withdrew Failing) grade for the course, regardless of whether the student had elected to take the course CR/NC. For more information, see Extension of Deadline to Complete Course Requirements section.

1. Late Registration

LLM students may add courses up until the published last day to add courses without instructor’s approval. After this date, LLM students may add a course only with the written permission of the instructor and a $100 late registration fee will be charged. Any student found to be attending more than two class meetings of a course for which they are not registered may be considered in violation of the Standards of Student Conduct

2. Withdrawal (“Dropping”) from Courses

Withdrawal from a course (commonly known as “dropping a course”) is official once the Registrar’s Office has been notified. Notification may be made electronically by “dropping” a course online via myGGU or by emailing lawreg@ggu.edu. Oral notification is insufficient. Written notifications may be delivered in person or by email. Email must originate from the student’s email address on record with the Registrar’s Office. The date the written notice is received by the Registrar’s Office will be the official date of withdrawal. Students should refer to the Law School’s Withdrawal Tuition Credit Policy and the Academic Calendar to determine the effect of withdrawals on their accounts.

a) Permission to Withdraw

Students wishing to withdraw from courses after the end of instruction also must obtain the approval of the Associate Dean or Director for Student Affairs, Law School or their LLM Program Director, depending on their academic program. Upon approval, students may withdraw from exam-graded courses until the last business day before the exam, and from non-exam-graded courses until the last business day before all work upon which the student will be graded is due.

b) Withdrawal Notations on Transcripts

The Registrar’s Office will record “W” (Withdrawal) grades on students’ transcripts for courses from which students withdraw after the “drop” deadline (the end of the second week of the term). The Registrar’s Office will record “WF” (Withdraw Failing) grades for courses from which students do not withdraw by the deadlines stated above and which are not completed or approved for incomplete grades. “WF” grades count as “F” grades in GPA calculations.
Students must obtain approval from the Associate Dean or Director for Student Affairs, Law School before registering for a course in which they previously received a “W” or “WF” notation on their transcripts.

c) International Students

International students with F-1 or J-1 visas may not drop below full-time status without the approval of an international student adviser. Full-time status is defined as eight (8) semester units for LLM students in the fall or spring semesters. The summer term is considered a “vacation term,” and no minimum enrollment is required.

Retaking Courses

Students are not permitted to retake courses unless instructed to do so by the Academic Standards Committee or LLM Program Director. Students who receive “F” (Failing) or “WF” (Withdrew Failing) grades in required courses are placed on academic probation and required by the Academic Standards Committee to repeat those classes. The Academic Standards Committee may require students whose GPAs place them on academic supervision or probation to retake courses in which they performed poorly, as determined by the Committee. Students who retake courses based on these criteria are required to register for the courses and again pay tuition and fees for them. Once the grades for the retaken courses are recorded, they replace the original grades in students’ GPA and unit calculations. However, the original grades for courses that are retaken permanently remain on students’ transcripts. For further information, refer to the Academic Standards  section.

Course Cancellation

The university reserves the right to cancel any course section in which the number of students enrolled is deemed insufficient or for which an instructor cannot be secured. All tuition and any associated fees for canceled course sections are immediately credited to students’ accounts at the time of cancellation. Students affected by course cancellations are notified via their myGGU email accounts. Students affected by course cancellations may adjust their enrollment via myGGU/Student Self-Service in accordance with the deadlines published in the Academic Calendar.

Enrollment

Enrollment Status Classifications and Reporting

The law school classifies students’ enrollment status based on academic level and the number of units in which they are enrolled in a given term. These enrollment status classifications are used for verification of enrollment for loan deferment purposes, financial aid eligibility, and veteran educational benefits certification.

Fall & Spring Terms Overload Full-time 3/4 Time* Half-time Less than half time
LLM & 1st Year
SJD Level
13 or more units 6-12 units 4-5 units 3 units 2 units or fewer
Summer Term Overload Full-time 3/4 Time* Half-time Less than half time
LLM Level 7 or more units 6 units 4-5 units 3 units 2 units or fewer

*The three-quarter time enrollment status is used only for Veterans Affairs (VA) Education Benefits certification.

The Registrar’s Office reports the enrollment status for all students enrolled in a given enrollment period to the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) on a periodic basis. The report includes the beginning and ending dates of each student’s actual enrollment period and their enrollment classification (e.g., half time, full time, less-than full time, withdrawn). The NSC makes this information available to lending institutions, prospective employers, verification agencies and others wanting to verify a student’s enrollment.

The information released by the NSC to third parties other than lenders is limited to directory information as defined under GGU’s privacy policy. Students who do not want information released by the NSC to inquirers (except to lenders), must submit a Request to Prevent Disclosure of Directory Information form to the Office of Records and Registration. See the Privacy of Student Education Records section for further details.

Enrollment Verification

The Registrar’s Office reports enrollment status information to the National Student Clearinghouse. Consequently, most lenders will be notified of students’ enrollment status and will update their records accordingly. Students whose lenders do not participate in the Clearinghouse, or those who need enrollment verifications for other purposes, such as rental agreements, may obtain them free of charge. Enrollment verification letters may be requested by submitting a Student Status Letter Request. Loan deferment forms also will be processed free of charge. Please note that the processing for Student Status Letter Requests is on a first-come, first-served basis and require a minimum of three (3) business days to be completed.

Students who are visiting away at another law school should work with the Financial Aid Office and Registrar’s Office to ensure their enrollment statuses are reported correctly to their lenders.

Students who intend to participate in a recognized exchange program and need to complete foreign language instruction before enrolling in law courses at the host institution will be eligible to be reported as if they are enrolled at Golden Gate University during the time they receive the language instruction, provided it meets certain criteria. Specifically, the language instruction must be considered full-time, be organized rather than self-directed, and extend for a maximum of three months in duration. In order to be reported as enrolled at Golden Gate University, the student must obtain documentation from the institution providing the language instruction (in English) verifying the student’s enrollment and provide the documentation to the Registrar’s Office.

In instances where the law school is asked to verify students’ academic standing to an outside agency and where the law school has a continuing obligation to report any status changes, the Registrar’s Office will submit the appropriate notification. For example, if the law school has certified students’ eligibility for the California State Bar’s Practical Training of Law Students Program and the student subsequently leaves the law school, the registrar will notify the State Bar of this change in status.

Continuous Enrollment Policy

LLM and SJD students on F-1 or J-1 student visas are subject to Department of Homeland Security rules that require continuous enrollment. Visa holding students must seek academic advising and the approval of the School of Law Designated School Official (DSO) if, for any reason, they will not attend on a full-time basis during a regular fall or spring semester. Visa holding students are not required to attend law school during summer session, though they are permitted to do so. Failure to receive prior approval for non-enrollment can cause a student to fall out of status and be subject to deportation. More information can be found in the International Students  section.

Transfer of Units for LLM Students

LLM students should consult the Graduate Law Programs  section for details on transferring units to their programs.

Visiting Students at Golden Gate University

Visitors seeking to enroll in LLM courses must obtain the permission of the LLM Program Director.

Visitor registration begins one week before the start of the fall and spring semester. Earlier registration is available for the summer session. See the Academic Calendar to determine when visitor registration begins for each term. Visiting students may not register online using myGGU. Instead, they must submit a Registration Request via email to lawreg@ggu.edu.

GGU transcripts for visiting students will not be automatically sent to their home schools. Instead, visitors must request copies of their transcripts from the Registrar’s Office and pay for them to be sent, regardless of whether they are visiting from a Consortium school. Visitors should verify all of their grades have been recorded via myGGU before submitting transcript requests.

Visiting students are subject to the terms of the Student Handbook in effect during their enrollment, including the Student Conduct Standards . Visiting students may request a picture ID from the Registrar’s Office, which is necessary for obtaining access to the law library. Students visiting from outside of the Bay Area and who are enrolled in a minimum of 8 units during a fall and/or spring term are entitled to utilize Office for Career Services.

GGU reserves the right to deny admission to visiting students at any time.

Payment Policies and Plans

1. General Policies

a) Obligation for Payment

Registration constitutes a financial contract between a student and the University. Students’ rights to University services and benefits are contingent upon their making all payments as agreed upon. If students do not make payments of amounts owed to the University when they become due, the University has the right to cancel students’ registration; to withhold their grades, diplomas, scholastic certificates, and degrees; to refuse admittance to exams; and to impound their exams. Students who fail to maintain good financial standing with the University may be denied participation in any deferred payment plans and/or some forms of financial aid. Failure to fulfill payment obligations by the due date may result in registration cancellation and may be reportable to relevant bar admission agencies.

b) Prior Balances

Prior to registering for a new term, students are required to pay any outstanding balances from prior terms. Students who have not paid outstanding balances or made payment arrangements satisfactory to the University will not be allowed to register. If students register, and it is later determined they have not met their payment obligations from a prior term, their registration for the current term may be canceled.
Students with a history of delinquency, students who are dropped from classes for nonpayment, and/or students with a past due balance who wish to register for any additional units will be required to make payment in full for any past due balance and pay in full, at the time of registration, for any and all future registrations.

c) Time of Payment

In order to complete registration, law school students must either pay all tuition and fees by the tuition deadline for the term (or at the time of registration if registering after the tuition deadline for the term), or make other financial arrangements with Golden Gate University.

d) Delinquent Term Charges Fee

Students will be assessed a delinquent term charges fee of $100 per semester if payment of all tuition and fees are not paid in full by the payment deadline for the term, as published in the academic calendar.

e) Payment Options

The University accepts payment in personal check, travelers’ checks, credit cards (MasterCard, Visa, American Express), and wire transfers. All credit and debit card transactions incur a non-refundable service fee equal to 2.75% of gross charges. Credit and Debit Card payments may be made online via myGGU/Self-Service. Checks should be mailed to: Golden Gate University, Student Accounting Services, 536 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94105-2968 or presented in person to the cashier at the GGU Hub. The student’s school identification number (SID) must appear on all checks and money orders to ensure they are credited to the appropriate account. In addition to these forms of payment, the University offers deferred payment plans listed below. Some payment plans require verification of eligibility prior to registration.

f) Returned Checks

If checks are returned by students’ banks, the payments are considered not made. If students’ checks are returned for any reason (e.g., insufficient funds, stop payment order, closed account, etc.), the University will charge a fee to their accounts.

2. Financial Aid

Students who have applied and been approved for financial aid (i.e., scholarships or loans) will have their tuition and fees deducted upon disbursement of the funds to their accounts. To receive financial aid, students must have completed the following steps prior to registration:

  1. Submitted a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA);
  2. Supplied additional documents requested by the Financial Aid Office;
  3. Accepted or declined their award offer; and
  4. Completed any and all additional loan application materials.

Students whose aid is insufficient to pay all registration charges, or who submitted materials too late to be approved prior to registration, must pay their balances in full or pay in accordance with one of the payment plans offered by the university. If students’ financial aid is denied or canceled for any reason, their account balances become due and payable immediately according to the “Time of Payment” policies above.

3. Payment Plans

The University offers an installment payment plan through Nelnet Campus Commerce to students in good financial standing. Students may elect to have funds automatically debited from their checking accounts or credit cards. In order to participate in this plan, students must enroll with and pay a nonrefundable $55 processing fee each term. Students may enroll via myGGU/Self-Service.

4. Corporate Reimbursement Plan

The University offers a corporate reimbursement plan through Nelnet Commerce to students whose employers offer a tuition reimbursement program. To be eligible for this plan, students’ employers must agree, prior to registration, to pay for the students’ tuition and/or fees for the term. To demonstrate eligibility each term, students must complete and submit the Corporate Reimbursement Plan Authorization form along with the business card of the authorizing officer to the Office of Student Accounting Services. In addition, to participate in this plan, students must enroll with and pay Nelnet a $100 non-refundable processing fee. Students may enroll via the Nelnet website mycollegepaymentplan.com/ggu, by calling 1-800-609-8056, or by visiting Student Accounting Services.

a) Payments and Payment Due Dates

The payment due dates are: February 5 for the fall term, June 5 for the spring term, and October 5 for the summer term. Nelnet will mail an invoice 30 days following the end of the term, with payment due within 15 days. Nelnet will mail one statement to students enrolled in this payment plan. Payments may be made via the Nelnet website or by calling Nelnet.

b) Students’ Responsibilities

The University is not responsible for billing students’ employers. If for any reason a student’s employer fails to reimburse the student, that student remains responsible for payment of the full amount of the tuition and fees. The University will assess on delinquent accounts a late payment fee of $40 per occurrence to students who submit payments late and a 1.5% finance charge per month beginning 30 days after the due date for the term.

5. Corporate/Agency Direct Billing Plan

The University offers a corporate/agency direct billing plan through Student Accounting Services to students whose employers agree to pay their tuition and/or fees up front, without grade or course completion limitations. The University will bill students’ employers directly for all authorized costs, and payments will be due 30 days after billing. Questions about corporate/agency direct billing should be directed to Student Accounting Services at 442-7839 or sas@ggu.edu.

a) Eligibility

To be eligible for this plan, students must be in good financial standing with the University and submit a completed Corporate/Agency Direct Billing form to Student Accounting Services. Forms must be submitted and approved prior to registration. Students whose employers/agencies authorize less than 100% payment of registration charges will be required to utilize one of the University’s other payment plans for the portion of the total charges that are not covered.

b) Students’ Responsibilities

If for any reason, a student’s employer/agency fails to pay the University, that student remains responsible for payment of the full amount of the tuition and fees. The University will assess delinquent accounts with a late payment fee of $40 and a 1.5% finance charge per month beginning 30 days after the due date.

Veterans Affairs Benefits

Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits are administered by the Financial Aid Office. To initiate certification of enrollment, please contact the university certifying official at va@ggu.edu or 442-7283.

Withdrawal Tuition Credit and Refund Policies

Withdrawal Tuition Credit Policy Registration constitutes a financial contract between a student and the University. Students are responsible for paying all registration charges by the due dates for the payment options they select, or their registration may be canceled. Failure to attend class meetings, participate in a course, or oral notification of intent to withdraw is not considered official withdrawal from a course. The following financial policies apply when students officially withdraw from courses. Students also may be subject to academic course withdrawal polices and should review them before attempting to withdraw from courses. For further information, refer to the “Fulfilling Course Requirements” section of this chapter.

Withdrawal from a course (commonly known as “dropping a course” if done by the end of the third week of the term) is official once the Registrar’s Office has been notified. Notification may be made electronically by “dropping” courses online via myGGU or in writing by submitting a Registration Request via email to lawreg@ggu.edu. Written notifications may be delivered in person or by email. Email must originate from the student’s e-mail address on record with the Registrar’s Office. The date the written notice is received by the Registrar’s Office will be the official date of withdrawal. Oral notification of intent to withdraw is insufficient.

Students should refer to the Academic Calendar to determine the last day to drop courses without tuition charge. After instruction begins for a term, fees are not refundable except in the case of a course being canceled by the law school. Tuition credits remain on the student’s account. Refunds are issued by Student Accounting Services upon written request from the student. If a student receiving Federal Student Aid funds withdraws from all courses (considered complete withdrawal), that aid is subject to the Return of Title IV Calculation, which may result in balances due to Golden Gate University.

a) Regular Courses

Regular courses are those that generally meet for the entire length of the term or for four or more weeks. Tuition will be credited as shown below.
 

Withdrawal Date Credit Amount
Official withdrawal prior to the start of instruction 100%
Official withdrawal during the first, second, or third week of instruction as stated in the academic calendar 100%
Official withdrawal after the third week of instruction None

b) Intensive Courses

Intensive courses are those that are shorter than four weeks in length and generally meet more than once a week. Tuition will be credited as shown below.
 

Withdrawal Date Credit Amount
Official withdrawal prior to the start of instruction 100%
Official withdrawal before the third class meeting for the course 100%
Official withdrawal after the third class meeting for the course None

c) Withdrawal From Law School, Leaves of Absence, or Visiting Away Status

A student who decides to withdraw from the School of Law, take a leave of absence, or visit away at another law school must provide official written notification. See the sections below regarding procedures.

Students who received financial aid must see the Financial Aid Office to document the financial consequences of their change in enrollment status on their financial aid and student account balances. Students with balances due must see Student Accounting Services to pay their charges. Leaves typically will not be approved for students owing balances. However, in the event an exception is made, students will be required to pay their balances in full before they will be allowed to return from leaves of absence.

d) Return of Title IV Calculation

Students receiving Title IV Federal Student Aid funds (i.e., Direct Unsubsidized and Direct Grad PLUS Loans) who withdraw from all of their courses for a term (complete withdrawal) must notify the Financial Aid Office after “dropping” their courses via myGGU or by submitting Registration Request via email to the Registrar’s Office. In some cases, when students go on approved leaves of absence or withdraw from law school, the Financial Aid Office must return Title IV Federal Student Aid funds to their lenders. The calculations for return of such funds is based on the students’ official withdrawal date, as indicated on their Withdrawal or Request for Leave forms. If students do not submit the forms, their official withdrawal date will be determined from the date of complete withdrawal from all courses for the term. Students may be required to return funds for which they are no longer eligible based on this calculation. Up through the 60 percent point in each term, a pro rata schedule is used to determine the amount of Title IV funds students have earned at the time of withdrawal. After the 60 percent point of the term, students have earned 100 percent of the Title IV funds, and no return of federal student aid will be required.

The Federal Return of Title IV funds calculation is separate from the Golden Gate University School of Law Withdrawal Tuition Credit Policy. All students receiving Federal Student Aid are subject to this federal policy. In addition, students withdrawing from the School of Law or taking leaves of absence must complete online loan counseling exit interviews. Please contact the Financial Aid Office for specific information.

e) Revocation of Institutional Scholarships

If institutional tuition scholarship recipients withdraw from school or drop all of their courses prior to the payment deadline, the scholarship will be reversed. Institutional tuition scholarships are to be applied toward existing tuition charges and at no time will they be refunded to students. See the Financial Planning  section for more information.

f) Refunds of Credit Balances

To receive refunds of credit balances resulting from tuition credits in accordance with the School of Law Withdrawal Tuition Credit Policy, students must submit written requests to Student Accounting Services. Requests may be submitted by e-mail to sas@ggu.edu or by letter. Refund checks will be mailed to students’ addresses on record unless a different address is noted in the request. Students who have requested Direct Deposit of refunds will have the refund directly deposited to the bank provided. Credit card refund requests must include the last four digits of the credit card number and the expiration date of the credit card that was used to pay the charges. To receive refunds for personal checks deposited within 60 days, students must submit proof the checks have cleared their banks, such as bank statements.

Student Financial Petitions

Students who are confronted with unexpected circumstances that require them to withdraw from some or all courses after the drop deadline (generally the end of the third week of the term) may petition Student Accounting Services to reverse a portion of their tuition charges. To do so, they must submit a petition in writing to the Assistant Director of Student Accounting Services no later than 60 days after the last day of the term from which they withdrew.

Petitions should explain in detail the circumstances and the correlation between these circumstances and the need to withdraw from the course(s), and what actions are being taken to resolve or prevent such circumstances from occurring in the future. All petitions must be supported by detailed documentation of all facts and circumstances as to why an exception to the withdrawal tuition credit policy should be made. The Committee will not approve any petition that is undocumented or is based on a pre-existing condition. Financial Petition forms with additional instructions are available on the website. The forms should be submitted to Student Accounting Services by e-mail.

The Financial Petitions Committee will respond to all petitions in writing within 30 working days of receipt. If the petition is approved, the University will apply credit balances toward future tuition charges within the next twelve-month period. In some cases, credit balances resulting from financial petitions will may be refunded to students. Credit balances resulting from petitions for students receiving Title IV funds will be returned to the appropriate financial aid program or lender. Students who owe balances, either because they did not pay their charges in full or because some or all of their Title IV funds were returned, will need to make payment arrangements with Student Accounting Services.

Account Disputes

All disputes concerning students’ accounts should be submitted in writing to: Student Accounting Services, Golden Gate University, 536 Mission St. San Francisco, CA 94105-2968 or sas@ggu.edu. The University will respond within 30 working days of receipt.

Grading

Grades are recorded section by section as the instructors submit their grade rosters. Larger sections generally take more time to grade-sometimes a month or more. If a student is graduating, and his or her grades are needed to certify him or her for a bar exam, the Registrar’s Office will contact that student’s professors to alert them to the urgency of submitting the grades for that course section and will obtain a temporary “CR” grade if necessary in order to certify the student, as long as there are no conduct issues pending.

Students will receive one of the following grades for each course in which they are enrolled: (1) a letter grade; (2) “CR” (Credit) or “NC” (No Credit); (3) “I” (Incomplete); (4) “W” (Withdrawn); (5) or “WF” (Withdraw/Failing). “WF” grades are assigned when a student fails to withdraw from the course before the published deadline. “WF” grades are assigned whether or not a student elected credit/no credit, or if the course was graded on a credit/no credit basis.

Grade Changes

Although instructors are encouraged to review exam answers with their students for educational purposes, the instructor is not permitted to change a grade after its submission to the registrar because of a substantive re-evaluation of the quality of an exam, paper or work in a clinic. An instructor may change a grade after its submission to the registrar only if the grade was incorrect because of a mathematical or clerical error by the instructor. Any grade change request must be initiated by the instructor, who can request the appropriate form from the Registrar’s Office.

The determination of the grade assigned to each student will be made by the instructor for each course, and his or her determination is final. However, if the Academic Standards Committee determines that the exam, assignments, exercises or clinical work on which the grade is based or its administration was unfair or improper, it may direct the registrar to change a grade. Requests to the Academic Standards Committee (other than petitions for reinstatement) must be submitted within 60 days of receipt of the grade, conclusion of the course, or receipt of information that raises a question about a grade or course.

Graduation

A graduation class consists of those who earn their degrees in December, May, and July of the same academic year. The academic year begins with the fall term and ends with the summer term.

Commencement

Commencement is held in May. The ceremony is usually held off campus in San Francisco. While participation in graduation is voluntary, all graduates are encouraged to attend.

1. Application Submission Deadline

To be considered a candidate for graduation, students must apply for graduation online through myGGU/Self-Service. Applications are due by December 1 of the year prior to the commencement ceremony for their graduation class. Students planning to graduate must submit this form whether or not they expect to attend the commencement ceremony. Only students who are in good academic standing and good financial standing will be eligible to participate in the commencement ceremony. Students visiting away at another law school during their last academic year still are required to apply for graduation by the deadline. Completing the application allows the Registrar’s Office to order a student’s diploma and ensures that the student will receive mailings and/or email updates regarding commencement throughout the spring semester. Completing the application form does not include ordering regalia, which is a separate process.

2. Required Graduation Regalia.

Graduates are required to wear a cap and gown (to be reserved through the GGU Bookstore) if they wish to participate in the commencement ceremony.

3. December Graduates

Students who graduate in December are considered members of the class of the next calendar year, and they are expected to attend commencement in May of the following calendar year. However, individuals who will graduate in December may apply to “walk early” and participate in the commencement ceremony held the year prior to the one scheduled for their class. Students should submit an application online through myGGU by the deadline for the year they wish to participate. The registrar will confirm that a student who has submitted an application is likely to graduate in December, without being in overload status in the summer or fall terms, and is in good academic and financial standing. Students may participate in only one commencement ceremony.

4. Graduation Communications

Members of the graduation class receive information about graduation (e.g., cap and gown ordering information, ticket information, and diploma name confirmation) through their GGU email address. Only students who have submitted a graduation application will receive these materials and messages. Failure to submit an application by the deadline will result in the student missing important and time sensitive information.

5. Graduation Fair

Members of the graduation class are required to attend the annual Graduation Fair. At the Graduation Fair, students complete necessary activities (reserving cap and gown, receiving tickets, diploma name confirmation, etc.) to ensure they are able to participate in the commencement ceremony. If graduation candidates are unable to attend the Graduation Fair, it is their responsibility to contact Student Affairs, Law School and complete all activities on their own before they may obtain their tickets. December graduates who are planning to attend the Commencement ceremony are encouraged, but not required to attend the Graduation Fair the year they will walk. December graduates should handle all matters before leaving campus.

Diplomas

Participants in the graduation ceremony do not receive their diplomas the day of commencement. Instead, the Registrar’s Office mails (or holds for pick-up) diplomas to graduates after certifying that all degree requirements have been completed and all tuition and fees owed the University have been paid. Due to the fact that diplomas are printed by an outside company, graduates usually do not receive them until several months after their graduation date. Students should be aware that changing their profile data in myGGU, or by submitting a Student Information Change Request form, will not update the address to which your diploma will be sent. That change request must be submitted separately to graduation@ggu.edu and clearly indicated as a change in diploma information.

Letters of Standing and Certification Forms

  • Letter of Standing: Students may request a letter of standing by completing and signing the Student Status Letter Request form and returning it to lawreg@ggu.edu. Requests are processed on a first-come, first-served basis and require a minimum of three (3) business days to be completed. 
     
  • Certification Forms: Students should send certification forms (PTLS, NCBE, State Bar, School Transfer, etc.) to lawreg@ggu.edu for processing. Note that any form that require moral character attestation (i.e., “disciplinary,” “conduct,” etc.) may take two to three weeks to be processed. 

Official Academic Transcripts

An official academic transcript is a legal document, and therefore, student’s’ legal names (not their chosen names) must appear on their Golden Gate University transcripts. Students may change their legal names by submitting the Student Information Change Request form along with supporting legal documentation, such as a birth certificate, marriage license, divorce decree, diver license, passport, or court order to records@ggu.edu.

An official academic transcript is a copy of a student’s permanent academic record, which includes all graded academic work attempted and/or completed at GGU or accepted as transfer credit from other post-secondary institutions, credit awarded for tests such as CLEP, honors received, and degrees or certificates earned. Only those courses completed at GGU will appear with letter-grades and will be used in the student’s grade point average (GPA) calculations. Academic records are listed chronologically by trimester term. Transcripts are issued only in their entirety. However, students who enroll in both the School of Law and in the School of Undergraduate Studies or any of the graduate schools will be issued separate transcripts for their university and School of Law coursework.

Golden Gate University has authorized the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) to provide an online transcript ordering service. Students can order transcripts using any major credit card; the credit card will only be charged after the order has been completed. The Clearinghouse website will walk students through placing orders, including processing options, delivery options, and fees. Students can order as many copies of their transcripts as they like in a single order, but an order may have only one recipient. A processing fee of $2.90 will be charged per order. Order updates will be sent to the student via email as the order is processed. Students can also track their orders online.

Transcript orders should be submitted online via myGGU/Self-Service using the “Order an Official Transcript” link in the left side menu. Students who do not have a myGGU account may submit requests online at studentclearinghouse.org. Students unable to submit an online request may submit an offline PDF request form† for an additional charge. Offline PDF request forms may be submitted via email or mailed to the Office of Records and Registration, Golden Gate University, 536 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105-2968. The student must sign and date the request and provide payment in the form of cash, check, or money order (made out to “Golden Gate University”) or a credit card number with expiration date and billing address. Students submitting the form via email should phone the office at 415-442-7260 to provide the credit card payment information rather than entering it into the form.

The Registrar’s Office offers the following delivery options:

Type of Delivery

Estimated Processing and Delivery Time Frames

Transcript Fee (non-refundable) Delivery Fee (non-refundable)
PDF via Email
  • Order must be submitted via the National Student Clearinghouse.
  • Transcript will be sent to the recipient via email within one business day of the order date, unless it has to be recreated* from archived records.

Online order: $10 per transcript + $2.90 online processing fee

Per address: $0

U.S. Postal Service

  • Order may be submitted via the National Student Clearinghouse or offline via PDF request form.
  • Transcript will be mailed to the recipient via first-class U.S. mail within one business day of the order date, unless it has to be recreated* from archived records.

Online order: $10 per transcript + $2.90 online processing fee

Offline† order: $20 per transcript

Per address: $0

Hold for Pickup
  • Order may be submitted via the National Student Clearinghouse or offline via PDF request form.
  • Transcript will be available for pickup at the Registrar’s Office within one business day of the order date, unless it has to be recreated from archived records, in which case it will be available within ten business days of the order. 
  • You must bring a form of ID with you when you come to pick-up your transcript.

Online order: $10 per transcript + $2.90 online processing fee

Offline† order: $20 per transcript

Per address: $0

Express United States

  • Order may be submitted via the National Student Clearinghouse or offline via PDF request form.
  • Transcripts that do not have to be recreated* will be sent to recipients in accordance with the following time frames:
    • Express orders requested on Monday-Friday by 10:00 am, will be mailed the same day for delivery the next business day via U.S. mail.
    • Express orders requested on Monday-Friday after 10:00 am, will be mailed the next day (Monday-Saturday) for delivery the next business day via U.S. mail.

Online order: $10 per transcript + $2.90 online processing fee

Offline† order: $20 per transcript

Per address: $39

 

 

 

Express Canada and Mexico

 

 

  • Order may be submitted via the National Student Clearinghouse or offline via PDF request form.
  • Transcripts that do not have to be recreated* will be sent to recipients in accordance with the following time frames:
    • Express orders requested on Monday-Friday by 10:00 am, will be mailed the same day for delivery the next business day via U.S. mail.
    • Express orders requested on Monday-Friday after 10:00 am, will be mailed the next day (Monday-Saturday) for delivery the next business day via U.S. mail.
  • Delivery time may vary for international destinations.

Online order: $10 per transcript + $2.90 online processing fee

Offline† order: $20 per transcript

Per address: $59

 

 

Express Other International

 

 

  • Order may be submitted via the National Student Clearinghouse or offline via PDF request form.
  • Transcripts that do not have to be recreated* will be sent to recipients in accordance with the following time frames:
    • Express orders requested on Monday-Friday by 10:00 am, will be mailed the same day for delivery the next business day via U.S. mail.
    • Express orders requested on Monday-Friday after 10:00 am, will be mailed the next day (Monday-Saturday) for delivery the next business day via U.S. mail.
  • Delivery time may vary for international destinations.

Online order: $10 per transcript + $2.90 online processing fee

Offline† order: $20 per transcript

Per address: $75

 

 

*Transcripts for students who first enrolled at GGU in the year 2000 or later are typically complete and generally do not require additional processing time. Transcripts for students who enrolled at GGU prior to the year 2000 may have to be recreated from archived records, which may require up to ten business days processing time.

†The PDF Transcript Request Form is available upon request from the Registrar’s Office.

The Office of Records and Registration will mail out, free of charge, one transcript per student to all degree and certificate recipients upon completion of their programs. These copies cannot be requested or individually expedited. Students wanting copies of their transcripts before receiving their free copies must submit orders and pay the applicable fees, as shown above.

Transcript, processing, and delivery fees are subject to change without notice.

Chosen Names

Golden Gate University recognizes that some students prefer to be known by chosen or preferred names rather than their legal names. The university strives to use and display chosen names wherever and whenever possible in its student records, learning management systems, and communications information systems. To that end, once declared, chosen names will appear in Self-Service, GGU4YOU, eLearning and other information systems where students’ instructors or classmates can see their names. In addition, if students have declared preferred pronouns, they too will appear on instructors’ Self-Service class rosters. In addition to declaring their chosen names and preferred pronouns, students may enter their nicknames and gender identities via the Personal Identity form by following the steps below.

To declare chosen names and pronouns, students should complete the following steps:

  • Login to myGGU.
  • Click on the Self-Service resource icon.
  • Click on the User Profile icon, located in the upper-right hand corner of the page.
  • Click on the Edit Personal Identity button.

The following policies apply to the declaration of chosen names:

  • When entering chosen names into Self-Service, the first letter of each declared name must be capitalized, i.e., all lower-case names are not allowed.
  • Students who want to be known by two first names, name (e.g., Mary Beth), should enter them together into the First Name field.
  • After students have declared their chosen names by entering them into Self-Service, they may obtain student ID cards showing their chosen names from the GGU Hub, free of charge.
  • Submitting a chosen name via Student Self-Service will automatically generate a new GGU student email address. Consequently, it is recommended that students enter their chosen names between academic periods to ensure there is no disruption in communications.
  • Chosen names will not be used where legal names are required by law or institutional policy, such as: financial aid records, official transcripts, payroll records, and federal immigration records.
  • Chosen names may appear on students’ diplomas so long as they have been entered by the students into Self-Service. However, if students need copies of their diplomas with their legal names, they will be required to pay for additional copies of their diplomas. Notarized copies of diplomas must display the student’s legal name on record.
  • Students may change their chosen names or delete them from their records by updating the Personal Identity form via Self-Service.
  • The use of chosen names for purposes of misrepresentation or fraud will be considered a violation of the student code of conduct.

California Bar Application Procedures

LLM or SJD students who wish to take a bar exam should contact the Program Director for the US Legal Studies program to obtain advice on the special requirements for foreign trained lawyers to take a US bar exam.

After the California Bar Examiners determine a student’s eligibility to sit for the exam, they will mail an examination certification list to the registrar. Certification by the registrar involves confirming that a student has earned a JD degree. Graduating students are certified in early to mid-January for the February bar exam and in early to mid-June for the July bar exam. The registrar will not certify students whose accounts are delinquent or who are required to complete financial aid exit interviews but have failed to do so. (The registrar automatically sends graduates’ transcripts to the California State Bar Office of Admissions as part of the certification process described above.)
 

Certification by State Other than California

As required by a state other than California, certification forms should be sent to the Registrar’s Office at lawreg@ggu.edu or Golden Gate University, Attn.: Registrar’s Office, Suite, 1350, 536 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105 for processing. Please note that certification and any forms that require moral character attestation (i.e., “disciplinary,” “conduct,” etc.) may take two to three weeks to be processed. If required by a state other than California, official copies of transcripts can be ordered online through the National Student Clearinghouse. More information is available online at http://www.ggu.edu/enrollment/academic-records/, by emailing records@ggu.edu, or by calling 415-442-7260.

Students who wish to seek disability accommodations on the MPRE should contact the Disability Services to obtain advice regarding the request process. Such students should begin the application process several months before the date of the exam. Information about requesting MPRE ADA accommodations can be found at www.ncbex.org/exams/mpre/ada-accommodations/.

Student Rights Under FERPA

  1. Students’ Rights Regarding Their Education Records
    The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the California Education Code afford “eligible students” certain rights with respect to their education records. Eligible students are those who are or have been in attendance at Golden Gate University. These rights include:

a) The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the date the university receives a request for access.

A student should submit to the registrar, dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, a written request that identifies the record(s) the student wishes to inspect. The school official will make arrangements for access and will notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the school official to whom the request was submitted, the official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed. If the student cannot inspect the records at Golden Gate University’s San Francisco campus, copies of the records will be made available by regular mail at the cost of $0.25 per page, upon satisfactory proof of the student’s identity.

b) The right to request the amendment of a student’s education records that the student believes is inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.

A student who wishes to ask the school to amend a record should write the school official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record the student wants changed, and specify why it should be changed.
If the university decides not to amend the record as requested, the university will notify the student in writing of the decision and the student’s right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

c) The right to provide written consent before the university discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from students’ education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

FERPA contains various exceptions to the general rule that the University should not disclose education records without seeking the prior written consent of the student. The following circumstances are representative of those in which education records may be disclosed without the student’s prior written consent:

  1. The University may release “Directory Information” upon request. Directory information is information that is not generally considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. See the “Directory Information” section below for more information.
  2. School officials who have a legitimate educational interest in a student’s education record may review it. A school official is a person employed by Golden Gate University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position; a person serving on the board of trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee. A school official also may include a volunteer or contractor outside the university who performs an institutional service or function for which the school would otherwise use its own employees and who is under the direct control of the school with respect to the use and maintenance of PII from education records, such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agency or a student volunteering to assist another school official in performing his or her duties. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibilities for the university.
  3. The University may disclose education records without consent to officials of another school, in which a student seeks or intends to enroll, upon request of officials at that other school.
  4. The University may inform persons including either parent(s) or guardian(s) when disclosure of the information is necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other persons.
  5. The University must provide records in response to lawfully issued subpoenas, or as otherwise compelled by legal process.

d) The right to file a complaint with the US Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the university to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-5901

  1. Directory Information

Golden Gate University has designated the following student records as “directory information,” and at its discretion may release this information without the student’s written consent:

  • Full legal names
  • Chosen names
  • Preferred pronouns
  • Address
  • Telephone number
  • Email address
  • Dates of attendance
  • Enrollment status
  • Program of study and concentration(s)
  • Anticipated completion date
  • Participation in officially recognized activities
  • Awards
  • Honors (including Dean’s List)
  • Degree(s) earned and date(s) conferred
  • ID card photograph

As required by Section 99.37 of the FERPA regulations, this serves as annual public notice of which student records Golden Gate University classifies as “directory information.” Students have the right to withhold all “directory information,” but must notify the registrar in writing by completion and submission of the “Request to Prevent Disclosure of Directory Information” form. Once a non-disclosure hold is placed on a student’s directory information, it will remain in effect until and unless the student removes it by submission of a written request to the registrar.

  1. Records Retention Policy

Student files are maintained for five years after graduation or last date of attendance, after which they generally are destroyed.