Glossary of Terms

academic calendar

Important dates for each semester; e.g., registration, add/drop, holidays and exams.

academic placement

Entering credit students are required to take institutional placement tests which determine knowledge in basic reading, writing and math or provide formal documentation of basic learning skills.

academic plan

A schedule of all courses needed to graduate in a certificate or degree program.


A professionally trained person who assists students with academic planning, registration and related concerns.

area of concentration

Courses that create a foundation for an intended major or electives to meet credit-hour requirements for a degree.

arts and sciences

Courses in the Arts and Sciences curricula parallel those offered at universities and are transferable to baccalaureate institutions.

associate’s degree

Five types are offered at Triton College: Associate in Arts (AA), Associate in Science (AS), Associate in Applied Science (AAS), Associate in Fine Arts (AFA) and Associate in General Studies (AGS).

articulated course

A course that meets the requirements for a specific course or elective credit at a four year college or university, or has been approved by the Illinois Articulation Initiative, identified by the ◊ symbol (i.e. RHT 101◊).

attendance policy

The number of absences permitted will vary from class to class.


Taking a class to benefit from experience without receiving a grade or college credit. The cost of auditing a course is the same as that charged for enrolling for credit. Special registration procedures apply.

auxiliary fee

A $1 per course fee which supports the development and maintenance of recreational facilities designed for student use.


Awarded to students who complete specific requirements in career education certificate programs of less than 50 semester hours.

college success course work

Provides students with the knowledge of basic reading, writing and mathematical skills that are necessary for success in the course or program of study chosen by the student. College success courses may not be used to meet graduation requirements.

cooperative work experience

Program designed to enhance the student’s academic knowledge, personal development and professional preparation through a combination of classroom theory and practical work experience with area business and industry.


A professionally trained person who assists students with personal, academic and career concerns.

course load per semester

Seventeen semester hours constitute the normal semester course load. A student is considered "full-time" if the semester hour course load is 12 hours or more.

credit hour

The unit used to quantitatively measure courses. The number of credits assigned to a course is usually determined by the number of in-class hours per week and the number of weeks per session.

credit by examination

Course credit awarded to students demonstrating knowledge through proficiency, DSST or CLEP Exams.

dean/associate dean

Individual responsible for a particular instructional or administrative division.


Awarded to a student who has completed a program of study.

degree audit

A listing of all courses applicable to graduation requirements.

department chair

Person who assists in the organization of curricula, scheduling of classes and management of faculty members within their own department.

disciplinary action

Students who fail to comply with Triton College policies, regulations and rules will be subject to disciplinary action, including dismissal from the college.


Made up of 25 towns and villages that surround Triton College. The tuition rate is determined by the student’s residence.

drop a course

Action taken when a student no longer wants to take a course he/she has previously registered for. A course dropped during 100% tuition refund period does not appear on the student’s transcript. After 100% period, a ‘W’ will appear on the student’s transcript.

dual admission

Students are admitted simultaneously to both a 2-year college and the 4-year institution that will grant the final degree. The student will complete approximately the first 2 years of college at the 2-year college and transfer for the junior and senior year to the designated 4-year institution.


Courses that students choose to take in order to reach the required number of hours for a certificate or degree. Students in some curricula have "recommended electives" or "program electives."

enrollment verification

Procedure to certify current or previous enrollment at Triton College.

extension sites

An outreach center of Triton College offering credit and non-credit courses at locations within the district.

extracurricular activities

Events or activities offered outside of the credit curriculum; e.g., clubs, athletics.


Money charged for additional services beyond tuition rate (i.e., Registration fee, Student Services fee).

financial aid

Financial assistance designed to bridge the gap between the resources of the students and their families and the cost of attending Triton College. The different forms of financial aid are: grants, loans, work on campus, various local scholarships or veteran’s affairs.

financial aid transcript

Records showing past financial aid agreements between the student and any other colleges or universities.

flexible scheduling

Classes offered at a variety of times, course lengths and locations that respond to the student needs.

full time

Enrollment in 12 or more credit hours per semester (6 hours in summer session).

general petition

A form used by students when requesting that the college initiate an action pertaining to student enrollment.

general studies

An associate’s degree (AGS) intended for students whose educational goals cannot be adequately met by other degree programs. The AGS is awarded in individualized curricula that has been agreed upon by the student and counselor.

grade point

Numerical value assigned to the letter grade received in a class. Used to calculate a grade point average.

graduation petition

A form required to be considered for an upcoming graduation. It may be accessed in the student portal.


Distinction awarded to graduates based on cumulative Grade Point Average at graduation.

honors study

The opportunity for honors study is available through general petition into Scholars Program course sections and Independent Study. These options are designed to provide intellectual challenge for the serious student.

hybrid/blended courses

A method of instruction that utilizes face-to-face, online and internet deliveries.

Illinois Articulation Initiative (IAI)

The Illinois Articulation Initiative (IAI) is a statewide agreement that allows transfer of the completed General Education Core Curriculum between participating Illinois institutions. Completion of the General Education Core Curriculum at any participating college or university in Illinois assures transferring students that lower-division general education requirements for an associate’s or bachelor’s degree have been satisfied.

incomplete grade

If a student is passing and misses the final examination (with authorization of the appropriate dean) or fails to complete a major course assignment, the instructor may assign a grade of an "I"—Incomplete. Coursework must be completed within 30 days of the start of the next semester (or date determined by instructor) or the grade automatically becomes "F".

independent study

Students working on their own in order to complete a course in an Arts and Sciences program. Special requirements apply.

international student

Non-native student wishing to attend Triton with a student visa. Special application process is required.

joint agreement

Understanding between Triton and other community colleges that out-of-district students can pay in-district tuition rates when enrolled in specific unique programs. Selected programs are available at in-district rates at other community colleges. Students enrolling in applied science programs are eligible.


Number of hours students spend per week in lecture and/or laboratory time in a course.

MyTriton portal

Students are able to access information related to Triton activities (course schedules, registration, financial aid, tuition payment, etc.) online through their MyTriton portal.

online course

A method of instruction that is predominantly delivered online through the Internet.

part time

A student who is taking fewer than 12 semester hours (less than six hours in summer session).

permanent record

The college’s internal document reflecting the unabridged academic history of the student at the institution.

placement tests

Institutional placement tests in reading, writing and math required for all credit students. Used to determine placement into appropriate levels of course work.


A course or courses that must be completed before taking another.

probation (academic)

Student academic status when 13-24 semester hours are attempted with completion of less than 50 percent of semester hours attempted or cumulative GPA of less than 2.00.

probation (disciplinary)

Students who fail to comply with college rules and regulations will be subject to disciplinary action, including dismissal from the college. Disciplinary hearings are conducted.


A student who officially withdraws from any class may be refunded a percentage of the course tuition, depending on when withdrawal is made. The refund schedule is published in each college catalog.


The process of completing steps necessary to enroll in classes, which results in a class schedule.

repeating a course

Students may repeat any course but may not receive credit for the course more than once. Only the higher of the two grades will be used in computing the grade point average. This policy pertains to courses taken and repeated at Triton College.

reverse transfer

A student transferring from another college to Triton.

schedule (class)

A listing of times, days and location of a student’s courses.

schedule (semester)

A publication providing a complete listing of dates and times for courses offered for a semester.

scholars program

A program of course work for academically superior students intending to transfer to four-year institutions. Special admission procedures apply.

selective admission programs

Programs that have special enrollment requirements.


The period when courses are conducted. Triton has fall, spring and summer semesters.

semester hour

See credit hour.

standards of academic progress

A procedure that identifies students who are seemingly making little or no academic progress and offers to help them correct academic weakness as early as possible.

student handbook

"Book 411" is Triton’s student handbook for campus information, including programs, services and departments.

student orientation

Session to introduce students to Triton programs, services and facilities. Optional course planning is included. Required for all new degree-seeking students.

student services fee

Fee is charged to any students enrolled in one or more credit classes. This fee supports programs such as student activities, College Center operations, Learning Resource Center and the school newspaper.

"2 + 2" agreements

These agreements define two years of specific Triton course work that would allow for transfer into specific programs of study at participating four-year institutions. The agreement(s) also define(s) the two years of course work required at the senior institutions for completion of the baccalaureate degree. For additional information, students are encouraged to contact a counselor.


Documents which are forwarded to persons or agencies for their use in reviewing the academic performance of the student. An official transcript is a legal document which contains an official signature, date of issuance and college seal. An unofficial transcript has no signature, date, or seal and is intended for reference or advising purposes only.

transfer credit

Upon petition, credit that has been earned at another accredited college or university will be applied to the student’s Triton record.

transfer guide

A guide for the 2-year college student providing general information regarding course work at the 2-year college that matches the transfer requirements of the 4-year institution.

transfer services

Assistance to students who plan to transfer to a baccalaureate institution by helping them identify appropriate colleges and universities and scholarship sources.


Cost of attending courses based on residency status and the number of semester hours for which the student enrolls.

tuition payment plan

Agreement to make tuition payments in installments during the semester.

university center

Through strategic partnerships with senior institutions, the college will offer students the opportunity to continue their higher education pursuits for select bachelor degree programs without leaving the Triton campus.

weekend college

Courses offered Friday nights, Saturdays and Sundays. Primarily designed for mature, disciplined students who are capable of concentrated attention and study.


Procedure to terminate enrollment in a class after the add/drop period. Students who do not officially withdraw from courses in which they are enrolled may be assigned a failing grade ("F") even if they never attend the class and will be held accountable for all tuition and fees.