How To Submit a Petition

Faculty advisors who have been identified as the Official Certifier for a given academic program have the authority to submit a petition on a student's Degree Works record for an exception or substitution to the stated requirements and to approve (or not approve) the completion of program requirements (See the Approving or Not Approving Graduation page for more information). This is done via the "Petition" tab in Degree Works.

Petitions can be submitted at any time, preferably before a student’s expected graduation term. The best time to submit a petition for an exception or course substitution would be while meeting with the student regarding the progress of their degree requirements. If a student has an incomplete requirement for the academic program (major/program, minor, or certificate), but the advisor knows that the student has met that requirement via an exception or course substitution approved by the department, the Official Certifier for the department must complete a “Petition” in Degree Works in order for the requirement to be marked as “complete” on the degree audit. The Office of the Registrar will apply the Petition as an Exception in Degree Works and manually move the course to the requirement in question, or mark the non-course requirement as complete on behalf of the Official Certifier. (Note: "major" is used to refer to fields of study in graduate degree programs.) An Official Certifier should only submit petitions regarding requirements or coursework for the program to which they are assigned as Official Certifier (i.e., an Official Certifier should not submit petitions regarding other majors, minors, certificates, or academic programs the student is pursuing or to general/university requirements on the student's record.)

The following scenarios may require a petition:

  • A course that appears in the “General Electives” (or in any other block) that should be applied to a requirement in the major/program, minor, or certificate block.
  • A course that is allowed to substitute for the stated requirement, such as a new course (created after the student's declared catalog year), a course outside of the student's declared academic program or the department's subject code that is similar in content to the stated requirements and approved for an exception, etc.
  • An additional elective (in a list or range of electives) that is allowed to fulfill the requirement for a specific student.
  • A non-course requirement that has been completed (such as a service learning project, internship, or piano proficiency).
  • Approving (or not approving) the completion of program requirements. (See the Approving or Not Approving Graduation page for more information.)

Any instances that require an exception to be made to the stated course requirements, or any non-course requirements that have been met but not marked as such will require the advisor to initiate the “Petition” process.

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions page for information related to a student's catalog year, pass/fail coursework, and more.

Note: In rare circumstances, a waiver to the stated requirements may be submitted when a course substitution or additional elective will not otherwise fulfill the stated requirements. Such waiver petitions are reviewed on a case-by-case basis and may require additional information from the department/program before processing.

  1. Log into Degree Works
  2. Search for the student(s) - see Searching for an Individual Student or Searching for a Cohort of Students
  3. Go to the top of the Degree Works audit worksheet and click the tab labeled “Petitions”.
    Step 1 Petitions Tab

  4. After clicking the “Petitions” tab, the “Add Petition” field should be highlighted. Click anywhere in the field to type. Describe the reason for the petition.
    Step 2 Add a Petition

    Example petition text:

    • Course substitution: “Department has approved MATH 312 to substitute for MATH 322 in the Ordinary Differential Equations and Multivariable Calculus requirement, ” or “Please use ELEC 302 instead of ELEC 301 in the Introduction to Signals requirement.”
    • Exceptions related to the catalog year: “Student is following graduation requirements for the 2011-2012 matriculation catalog. However, BIOC 365 was not offered until 2014-2015 and will fulfill the Laboratories in BIOC or BIOE requirement.”
    • Non-course course requirement: “Student passed piano proficiency exam on December 1, 2014,” or “Student completed one of the service learning requirements in March 2015.”
    • Approval of a major/program, minor, or certificate: “Student is approved for the ENGL major,” or “Student is not approved for the ECON major because he is missing ECON 302,” or “BUSI minor not approved because student does not have enough courses.” (See the Approving or Not Approving Graduation page for more information regarding this petition type.)

  5. When finished, click “Submit Petition.” You should see a message that says, “Your petition was added successfully.” Once submitted, the "Petitions" tab will show the petition as awaiting approval, approved, or applied as an exception. If a petition cannot be processed or no longer applies, the petition will be rejected. Step 3 - Submit a Petition
  6. You can return to the student’s audit by clicking the “Worksheets” tab in the upper left corner. Enter a new Student ID in the upper left corner, or click the arrow above the Name field, to navigate to a different degree audit. Step 4 Worksheets

Once the Office of the Registrar has received notification of a petition pending in Degree Works, the petition will go to an Approved status during processing, then an Applied status when processing is complete. If the Office of the Registrar has any questions or needs more detail on a petition for a student, the Official Certifier will be contacted directly. The Official Certifier can then modify an existing petition or submit a new petition with the necessary information. Petitions are typically processed within three business days (during off-peak times of a given semester), and an exception added to the student’s degree audit. The requirement petitioned will then be listed as complete by exception. Pertinent details from the petition memo will be included on the degree audit and viewable to the student.