Course Waiver Policy

 Students who have completed a graduate or undergraduate course that is consistent with the content of one of WPI's four graduate business foundation courses (FIN500, FIN501, MKT500 & OIE500) will be considered to have satisfied that foundation course and the relevant credit hours under the guidelines below.

Course Waiver General Guidelines:

A foundation course waiver request must meet the following requirements:

  1. A student must be matriculated in a WPI graduate business degree program to be considered for a course waiver.
  2. Course waivers may be granted for foundation-level courses only.
  3. Graduate credit will not be awarded for courses successfully waived. However, students will have their program shortened by three credits for each foundation course waived. Master of Science degrees must be a minimum of 30 credits in length, so any foundation course waiver that results in the total credits dipping below 30 must be replaced by approved elective credit.

Course Waiver Approval Process:

A student requesting a foundation course waiver must submit the following to the director of business programs:

  1. A completed WPI Graduate Business Foundation Course Waiver Form.
  2. A description of the course upon which the waiver is being made, published by the college or university at which the course was taken, which is reflective of the content of the course at the time the course was taken by the student requesting the waiver.
  3. An official transcript that indicates the grade received in the course and the year in which the course was taken.

Couse Waiver Decision Guidelines:

Waiver decisions are based on the following guidelines:

  1. The nature of the course description submitted by the student: Is the course substantially similar in content to the course for which the waiver is requested?
  2. The year the course was taken. As a general rule, courses taken more than six years prior to the waiver request will not be considered as grounds for a waiver without additional requirement of passing a waiver exam.
  3. The grade received in the course upon which the waiver is request is being made; "B" or better is the norm.
  4. The quality of the institution at which the course was taken.

Requests for course waivers that do not meet the Course Waiver Decision Guidelines may be granted permission to take a waiver exam at the discretion of the director of business programs.


Waiver Exam Guidelines

  1. Students may schedule foundation course waiver exams via the director of business programs.
  2. A $40 administrative fee (payable to WPI School of Business) is due for each wavier exam attempted.
  3. Waiver exams are three hours each.
  4. Students may take a waiver exam at any point in their program, provided they adhere to the prerequisite requirements of all upper-level courses.  However, it is recommended that students identify at the onset of their program all opportunities for waivers to ensure that courses taken are appropriate.
  5. Students will be allowed to take a waiver exam in a given subject only once.
  6. Waiver exams will be graded on a pass/fail basis. A passing grade is 70 or greater.
  7. Graded waiver exams will not be returned to the student.
  8. Students will not be permitted to remove any written materials from the waiver exam testing area.
  9. Waiver exam results will be reported via e-mail to the student within two weeks of taking the exam, and prior to the course registration deadline for the pending semester.

Non-Foundation Course Waivers

  1. Non-foundation-level courses are typically not waivable.  Undergraduate courses do not have the scope and depth of graduate-level courses and may not be used to waive non-foundation-level graduate courses. 
  2. Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by the WPI School of Business' Graduate Policy and Curriculum Committee (GPCC). Students requesting a waiver of a non-foundation-level graduate course must submit a written waiver request to the GPCC with supporting documentation.
  3. Any non-foundation-level graduate course approved for waiver must be replaced by another graduate course consistent with the focus of the student's degree program.

For more information, contact Norm Wilkinson, director of business programs, at nwilkins@wpi.edu.