To streamline its academic activities in order to produce higher calibre graduates, authorities at the University of Liberia (UL) have with immediate effect, notified more than 10,000 undergraduate students that they have been placed on probation due to their “poor academic performance,” a UL Relations official has confirmed.
The probation list was released a few weeks after the UL announced the names of its “good academic standing list,” which showed that more than 1, 400 students acquired cumulative Grade Point Averages (GPA) of at least 3.0 and above, while 16 students had perfect GPAs of 4.0.
In a statement issued yesterday, UL authorities said the probation notice serves as a strong warning for students to perform better during the current semester.
“When grades are tabulated for the current semester, those on double probation will be suspended from school for one semester, while those in the category of three successive failures (semester GPA below 2.0) would lead to academic expulsion in keeping with the UL Student Handbook,” the UL statement stipulates.
The lists were compiled by the office of Enrollment Management. The first list showed that 5,349 students are on single probation after failing to maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 or scored grade “C” for the 2nd semester of academic year 2012/2013.
Names of students on probation are being concealed. Instead, the public will identify them by their identification numbers or their major courses of study that are already posted on the UL bulletin board.
According to the UL Student Handbook Chapter IX, “A student is placed on Probation…, if his/her GPA for any semester falls below 2.0 or scores “C” at the end of the semester.”
Therefore, for students on double probation, the Handbook says, “…he/she may remain at the university if the cumulative average is not less than 2.0 at the end of successive two semesters.”
The double probation list shows that the Business College, with an enrollment of 11,242 students, has 1,955 or 17 percent on probation.
The College of Agriculture and Forestry with an enrollment of 3,551 accounts for 755 or 21 percent on double probation; while out of the 8,000 in the Science College, 1852 or 23 percent of them are being placed on double probation. Liberia College has a total enrolment of 5,524, but 598 or 10.8 percent of them are on double probation.
As for Teachers’ College with 1, 993 students, there are 186 or 0.9 percent on double probation.
A further breakdown by departments shows the double probation affects 819 representing 15.33 percent of students from the Accounting Department; General Agriculture has 342 students, representing 10.14 percent; Biology Department has 533 students representing 10.35 percent, and Geology Department shows 532 students or 9.9 percent.
However, based on the rules, students on the double probation list are likely to be suspended for one semester, but after serving the suspension, they will have the opportunity to apply for re-admission.
Additionally, the Handbook states that a student is dropped from the university when at any time following the readmission after serving the suspension, his/her cumulative GPA remains less than 2.0 at the end of the semester. That student will be dropped permanently from the university.
The UL statement, signed by the vice president for UL Relations, Noris Tweah, added that presently, the university has more than 35,000 students on five campuses. Following the outbreak of the Ebola Virus Disease, the university reopened on March 17.