Jul 17, 2024  
2021-2022 Catalog/Student Handbook 
2021-2022 Catalog/Student Handbook [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Admission to the College


General Admission to the College

When all required items have been received by the Office of Admissions, individuals are eligible for admission to Southside Virginia Community College if they are high school graduates or the equivalent, or if they are eighteen years of age or older and able to benefit academically from study at Southside Virginia Community College as demonstrated by assessment in reading, writing, and mathematics. The college reserves the right to evaluate and document special cases and to refuse or revoke admission if the college determines that the applicant or student poses a threat, is a potential danger, is significantly disruptive to the college community, or if such refusal or revocation is considered to be in the best interest of the college. The college also reserves the right to refuse admission for applicants that have been expelled or suspended from, or determined to be a threat, potential danger or significantly disruptive by, another college. Individuals may be admitted to the college as curricular or non-curricular students.

Social Security Disclosure

Section 23-2.2:l of the Code of Virginia also authorizes the Virginia Community College System to collect student social security numbers and other personally identifiable information prior to student’s enrollment, and requires it to electronically transmit enrollment data to the State Police. It will be necessary for applicants who wish to be considered for veterans’ benefits, financial aid, and Hope Scholarship/Lifetime Learning tax credit to provide a social security number to the college. To protect your privacy, your social security number will not be used as your student identification number. The VCCS will only use your social security number in accordance with federal and state reporting requirements, and for identification purposes within the VCCS. It shall not permit further disclosure unless required or authorized by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, 20 U.S. C. Code 1232g, or pursuant to your obtained consent.

Curricular Students

Click here to complete an Online Application for Admission.

When submitting the Online Application for Admissions, the following may be uploaded during the application process:

  • High school transcript from an accredited institution
  • GED transcript
  • Transcripts from other attended Colleges and Universities
  • ACT/SAT scores

You must submit official copies of the above documentation to the Office of Admissions for program assessment and transfer credit evaluation.

If you are a homeschool graduate, you must provide a graduation date and may be required to provide documentation of coursework. The Virginia Community College System Student Information System academic records will be sufficient for colleges within the Virginia Community College System.

Additional information may be required by the college for admission to a specific program or curriculum or program at the college. Students may be denied admission to the college if there is sufficient reason to believe that they present a danger to themselves or to other members of the college community.

Non-curricular Students

Students not working toward completion of a degree, diploma, or certificate should complete only an Online Admissions Application. After non-curricular students complete 9 credits, their grades are assessed. Students not making satisfactory progress are scheduled at that time for placement testing. Placement testing is required for non-curricular students wishing to take English or mathematics courses, and all required course pre-requisites or other requirements must be satisfied before enrolling in specific college-level courses.

For a non-credit community service course, a person should apply to the Workforce Development and Continuing Education Office on the campus where the course is being offered.

Dual Enrollment Student Admissions

All students who desire admission under dual enrollment criteria should contact the Dual Enrollment Coordinator on one of the main campuses at (434) 736-2015 or (434) 949-1080.  You may also visit our Dual Enrollment page.

Special Admission Requirements for International Students

In addition to the general admission requirements of the college, all international applicants who wish to enroll as curricular students must demonstrate proficiency in both written and oral English through use of either a standardized national or a locally developed test. Southside Virginia Community College does not issue I-20 forms or enroll students with F-1 visas. We do enroll non-U.S. citizens who hold one of the following: a current visa, a letter from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigrations Services or Homeland Security; or a temporary/permanent resident card. International students should contact the Admissions Office for further information.

Students with Documented Disabilities

Consistent with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the Virginia Community College System guarantees that no qualified individual shall by reason of disability be denied access to, participation in, or the benefits of college. Each qualified person shall receive appropriate, reasonable accommodations upon request to insure full and equal access to educational opportunities, programs, and activities. It is the intent of the college that all courses of study be fully accessible to all qualified students. In order to accomplish this, the college would appreciate an advance notice of approximately one semester from a person with a documented disability planning to attend the institution. Inquiries concerning the affirmative action policy should be addressed to Southside Virginia Community College’s Affirmative Action Officer, Shannon Feinman, whose office is located on the Christanna Campus at 109 Campus Drive, Alberta, Virginia 23821 (434) 949-1000 or on the John H. Daniel Campus at 200 Daniel Road, Keysville, Virginia 23947 (434) 736-2000.

It is the policy of Southside Virginia Community College to maintain and promote equal employment and educational opportunities without regard to race, color, sex, or age (except where sex or age is a bona fide occupational qualification), religion, handicap, national origin, or any other non-merit factors.

Admission to Specific Curricula

In addition to the general admission requirements listed above, specific additional requirements for certain curricula of the college are listed in the “Programs of Study” section of this catalog. Persons who do not meet the academic requirements for a specific curriculum may become eligible academically to enter the curriculum by completing a developmental studies program prescribed by the college.

The Admissions and Records Office will officially notify students of their admission to the curriculum. Any deficiencies noted may be resolved through developmental studies.

The college reserves the right not to offer a program of study in the event that a sufficient number of students do not enroll in the curriculum. Once a student begins a course of study, however, all specialized courses normally will be made available. When a decision is made not to offer a program, the interested student will receive adequate notice and assistance in developing alternative plans.

Persons applying to enter one of the associate degree programs (Associate of Arts and Sciences or Associate of Applied Science) must be high school graduates or the equivalent, have completed an approved developmental studies program, or otherwise be considered eligible by the college.

Admission to Courses

Admission to a specific course is possible when students meet the prerequisite requirements for the course. Each course is offered on the condition of adequate enrollment, and the college reserves the right to cancel or discontinue any course either because of small enrollment or for other reasons deemed sufficient by the college. The college also reserves the right to close registration in a course after maximum effective enrollment has been reached.

Enrollment of Home School Students

Southside Virginia Community College admission policies address students who have high school diplomas or the equivalent or who are at least 18 years of age and able to benefit from the college experience. The policies also address students who are less than 18 years of age and who are currently enrolled in a secondary school. The college will also consider the admission of students who are less than 18 years of age and do not have a high school diploma, who are not attending a public or private school, and who are documented as “homeschool students” at the secondary school level. These students may be accepted at Southside Virginia Community College as described below. The program of studies for such admitted students is considered an enrichment to their home school program. It is not intended to substitute for the home school experience. Therefore, the college reserves the right to limit the number of credits for which the student may enroll.

The following policies and procedures will apply to the enrollment of homeschool students:

  1. An applicant for admission who does not have a high school diploma and is not at least 18 years of age may be required to demonstrate, prior to enrollment, appropriate basic skills equal to those expected of other entering students.
  2. All enrolled students are subject to all the rules, policies, and procedures of the college pertaining to attendance, confidentiality of records, conduct, etc., as described in the SVCC Catalog.
  3. Students who are homeschooled must provide a current copy of a signed Homeschool Agreement between the appropriate school system and the authorizing parent or guardian to the Office of Admissions and Records prior to admission to the college.
  4. The homeschool student must meet with a college counselor to discuss enrollment prior to registration.
  5. The college counselor will make a recommendation to the Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Success concerning approval of the student’s request for course enrollment. All subsequent registrations as a “homeschool student” will require the approval of a college counselor.
  6. The home school student is subject to the same basic skills assessment requirements as are other enrolling students and may be required to complete appropriate developmental courses before taking the requested courses.

Special Requirements

Developmental Courses

On the basis of placement tests, high school grades, or other means, a student may be required to take one or more developmental courses. The purpose of developmental courses is to develop the basic skills and understanding necessary for success in college-level courses. Developmental courses should be taken in the first semesters of a program, so students can establish good foundations for the rest of their coursework.

Developmental courses are those numbered 01 to 09 in the catalog.

Since developmental courses do not normally count toward meeting program requirements, it may take longer to complete a program than the time given in the catalog.

Students must take developmental courses until their exit requirements are completed. Students with particular learning needs may have to repeat the same developmental class.

Although traditional grades are not awarded for developmental classes, it is to the student’s advantage to take them seriously and complete them as soon as possible.

In order to complete developmental courses in a timely fashion, developmental students should seriously consider limiting the number of other courses in which they enroll. Discuss this with advisors.

Attendance and work outside of class are very important. No amount of instruction can benefit students without their time and effort. Failure to satisfactorily complete developmental courses can prevent a student from receiving financial aid payments.

A student who receives a “U” (unsatisfactory) in a developmental class must have a conference with the instructor who awarded that U before reenrolling in any section of the course. Students with questions about developmental placement should speak with a counselor, advisor, or developmental instructor.

Residency Requirements

Resident tuition charges for a Virginia resident are available only to a person who has been domiciled in and is and has been an actual bona fide legal resident of Virginia for a period of at least one year prior to the commencement of the term for which any such resident tuition charge is sought. (Refer to Code of Virginia, Section 23-7). Applicants claiming entitlement to in-state tuition rates must submit a completed Application for Virginia In-State Tuition Rates and may also be required to submit further information for determining residency eligibility for tuition purposes.

When enrollments must be limited to any curriculum or course, first priority must be given to all qualified applicants who are residents of the political subdivisions supporting the college (except in the case of approved state and regional specialized programs), provided such students apply for admission to the program by published deadlines. The priority list is as follows: (1) residents of the political subdivisions supporting the college, (2) other Virginia residents, (3) out-of-state, and (4) international students with student F-2 and diplomatic (A-1 and A-2) visas.

Waiver of Requirements or Credit Through Credit for Prior Learning

Students who feel that previous educational studies, training programs, or work experience may entitle them to an adjustment in the coursework required in a particular curriculum should contact the Admissions Office to obtain a copy of the College form to request evaluation for Credit for Prior Learning.

The advanced placement function of the college is the administrative placement of a student beyond the basic or first courses(s) in a curriculum, allowing waiver of credit or college credit for subject matter and/or other appropriate training or experience. Advanced standing may be considered upon the submission of documentation on: (1) College Level Examination Programs (CLEP), (2) Advanced Placement Program (AP), (3) Subject Standardized Tests (SST) through DANTES/USAFI, (4) transfer credits from other regionally accredited post-secondary institutions, (5) equated occupational experience, (6) assessment of coursework with external agencies, (7) institutional credit by exam, (8) assessment of coursework with vocational technical schools, (9) military and non-traditional learning experiences, (10) waiver of physical education requirements for veterans, and (11) waiver of foreign language requirements.

In transferring to a senior institution, it is the student’s responsibility to contact the institution concerning the acceptability of credit awarded by advanced placement.

Transfer Information


Transfer from Other Colleges

Courses accepted for transfer must have been completed at a regionally accredited institution. Usually, a student transferring from another college who is eligible for reentry to the last college attended shall be eligible for admission to Southside Virginia Community College.

If a transfer student is ineligible to return to a particular curriculum in a previous college, generally the transfer student will not be allowed to enroll in the same curriculum at Southside Virginia Community College until one semester elapses or until completion of an approved preparatory program. The Academic Review Committee shall decide on each case and can impose special conditions for the admittance of such students.

Students transferring from another college should consult the Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Success at SVCC for assessment of credit in order to determine their standing before registering for classes. Generally, no credit will be given courses with grades lower than “C”. Transfer students may be advised to repeat courses if it is clearly to their advantage to do so in order to make satisfactory progress in their curriculum.

Transfer Between Curricula

As students proceed in their studies, they may decide that they wish to change their program or curriculum. In such cases, the student should make an appointment with Student Development for assistance. No changes in program or curriculum can be made without the recommendation of the student services and the approval of the Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Success.

Transfer to Four-Year Institutions of Higher Education

State Policy on Transfer

According to the statewide policy on transfer, students who have earned an associate degree based on a baccalaureate-oriented sequence of courses should be considered to have met lower-division general-education requirements of senior institutions. This may still leave specific degree requirements based upon the selection of a major at the senior institution.

As students implement their transfer plans, it is their responsibility to become familiar with the departmental requirements at the institution(s) they are considering. On each campus of the institution, faculty advisors and counselors are available to assist students with the transfer process. It is recommended that this process begin early in the students’ enrollment at the community college. Associate of Applied Science Degree Programs are designed by the college as two-year terminal programs. The State Policy on Transfer states that applied degree programs often have counterparts at senior institutions. Increasingly, community colleges and senior institutions are developing agreements to encourage student transfer into these programs. It is the responsibility of students in applied programs planning to transfer to work closely with faculty advisors and counselors to identify senior institutions that will accept these credits and to enroll in transferable general education courses.

Guaranteed Admission Agreements

Through system-wide agreements, students who graduate from one of Virginia’s 23 community colleges with an associate’s degree and a minimum grade point average may obtain guaranteed admission to more than 20 of the commonwealth’s colleges and universities.

The most current listing of Guaranteed Admissions Agreements between Virginia’s community colleges and four-year colleges and universities is available at http://www.vccs.edu/transfer.

Student Classifications

General Classification

Curricular Student

A student shall be classified as a curricular student if the following three conditions are satisfied: (1) the student holds a regionally accredited high school diploma, a GED or its equivalent, or is otherwise determined qualified for admission; (2) the required documents for general admission to a curricular program are received by the Office of Admissions; and (3) the student has been admitted to one of the college’s curricula.

Non-curricular Student

Students who are not formally admitted to one of the regular curricula but who are classified according to the following student goals or conditions are considered noncurricular students. International students requiring issuance of an I-20 or students receiving Federal or State aid are not eligible for these categories:

  1. Upgrading employment skills for present job
  2. Developing skills for new job
  3. Career exploration
  4. Personal satisfaction and general knowledge
  5. Transient student
  6. Non-degree transfer student
  7. High school student (with college and high school approval only)
  8. General or curricular requirements pending (with college approval only)
  9. Restricted enrollment (with college approval only)
  10. Auditing a course (with college approval only)

Student Level


Students are classified as freshmen until 30 semester credits of study have been completed.


Students are classified as sophomores after 30 or more semester credits have been completed.

Student Status

Full-Time Student

A student enrolled for 12 or more credits in a semester is a full-time student.

Part-Time Student

A student enrolled for fewer than 12 credit hours in a semester is a part-time student.

Tuition and Fees


Tuition and fees are due upon established and published deadlines and may be paid by cash, check, money order, VISA, MasterCard, Discover, or via Nelnet Payment Plan. Checks or money orders must be made payable to Southside Virginia Community College for the exact amount owed. Cash should not be sent by mail.

Tuition and fees are not considered paid until check or money order payment is honored by paying agent. The college charges a $35.00 processing fee for all dishonored (returned) checks and will not accept future payments by check from an offending party. Failure to make good a dishonored check will result in administrative withdrawal from classes.

Tuition rates are established annually by the State Board for Community Colleges. Current rates can be verified by contacting the Admissions and Records Office. Tuition rates as of Fall 2021:

  • Current Virginia Resident $154.00 per credit
  • Out-of-state resident $330.60 per credit
  • Out-of-state business $214.00 per credit
  • Out-of-state military $154.00 per credit
  • E rate in-state $154.00 per credit
  • E rate out-of-state $236.00 per credit
    *Subject to change; rates shown without fees

Payment of tuition also enables the student to use the library, bookstore, parking lot, student lounge and other facilities of the college. There are no special laboratory or library fees, but students are expected to pay charges for any school property (such as laboratory equipment, supplies, library books and materials) that they damage or lose.

Student Fee

All students are charged a student fee of $1.25 per credit to assist in social and cultural activities.

Capital Fee

Out-of-State students are charged a $23.50 capital fee per credit.

Service Fee

All students are charged a $1.25 per credit service fee to assist in campus maintenance.

Books and Materials

Students are required to obtain their own books, supplies and consumable materials needed in their studies. The estimated cost of these items will be $800 per semester for the average full-time student. Costs for programs such as nursing will be much higher.

Waived Tuition and Fees

Senior Citizens

Under provisions of the Virginia Senior Citizens Higher Education Act of 1974 and subsequent amendments, a person who has been legally domiciled in Virginia for one year and has reached 60 years of age before the beginning of a semester may enroll in a state institution of higher learning at no cost (tuition and applicable required fees waived) provided all tuition-paying students are given first priority for class spaces. Senior citizens whose taxable income for federal income tax purposes does not exceed $23,850 for the year preceding the year in which enrollment is sought may register and receive full credit for coursework successfully completed, tuition and fee-free. The senior citizen must submit the previous year’s federal tax return as proof of income. The senior citizen whose income exceeds this figure may only audit, tuition and fee-free, courses offered for credit or enroll in non-credit courses.

Children of Deceased Law Enforcement/Fire Fighter/Rescue Squad Personnel

Any child between the ages of 16 and 25 whose parent has been killed in the line of duty while employed or serving as a law-enforcement officer, fire fighter, or rescue squad member in Virginia is entitled to free tuition and required fees if the deceased parent was domiciled in Virginia at the time of death and certification of employment is provided.

Children of Permanently Disabled or Deceased Veterans

Section 23-7.1 of the Code of Virginia says that free tuition and college fees shall be given to children of qualified permanently 100 percent disabled or deceased veterans of the armed forces of the United States who attend state-supported schools of secondary grade or college level. Eligibility for such children shall be determined by the Division of War Veterans’ Claims, who shall state in writing to the admitting school that tuition should be waived according to the provisions of Section 23-7.1. For further information, contact the SVCC Veterans Affairs Office.

Tuition Refunds and Impact of Non-payment

Tuition Refunds

Students shall be eligible for a refund for those credit hours dropped during the add/drop period for the session. The refund will be at the full credit rate. After the add/drop period has passed, there will be no refunds except as provided below in extenuating circumstances.This deadline should not be confused with the last day to withdraw without academic penalty. For the standard semester, the last day to drop with refund is published in the college calendar. Refunds are issued to the registrant only. In order to be eligible for refund under any of the circumstances set forth in the foregoing paragraph, a student must execute an official drop form at the college or drop classes on the internet using the VCCS Student Information System (SIS) by refund dates published by academic term. Full refunds will be made when a course is canceled by the college.

All services shall be withheld from a student who owes money to the college or the college bookstore for any reason or who has books or materials outstanding from the college.

The college is authorized to issue a tuition refund based only on the following: (1) administrative error, (2) documented extenuating circumstances (e.g., major medical emergency, extreme financial hardship, death of an immediate family member, etc.), or (3) a national emergency or mobilization declared by the President of the United States and in accordance with Section 23-9.6.2 of the Code of Virginia. If a tuition refund is required as a result of actions of the college, the student may be granted a tuition refund notwithstanding earlier provisions of the section. In addition, if a tuition refund is required due to a highly unusual emergency or extenuating circumstance, any such refund shall be approved in writing by the Vice-President of Academic and Workforce Programs or his/her designee.

If you have questions about the refund policy, contact the Business Office. Students receiving any type of federal financial aid should also see the Title IV Refund Policy in the Financial Aid section of this catalog.

Encumbrance of Records

All services will be withheld from a student who owes money to the college for any reason or who has books or materials outstanding from the Learning Resource Center. This means that no transcripts will be issued, the student will not be permitted to register, and no recommendations will be written nor other services provided.

Suspension of Students for Nonpayment of Tuition and Fees, College Loans, College Fines, or Other Debts Owed the College

A student’s continued attendance at the college is dependent upon proper settlement of all debts owed the institution. Should the student fail to satisfy all due and payable amounts for tuition and fees, college loans, college fines, or other debts owed the college, the student may be suspended. No student shall be allowed to register in any succeeding semester until all current debt owed to the college have been satisfied.

If any debts are referred for collection to an attorney or to a collection agency, the debtor will be liable for additional collection fees of the unpaid balance. Requesting goods or services will be deemed to be acceptance of these terms.

Sex Offender Admissions Policy

Section 23-2.2:1 of the Code of Virginia requires that the VCCS send enrollment information to the Virginia State Police concerning applicants to institutions of higher education. This information is transmitted electronically and compared against the Virginia Criminal Information Network and National Crime Information Center Convicted Sexual Offender Registry. Language on the web application informs applicants that their information is being transmitted to the State Police. In the event that an applicant to Southside Virginia Community College is determined to be on the Sex Offender Registry, the following procedures apply:

  1. The applicant will be sent a letter to his/her mailing address by Vice-President for Enrollment Management and Student Success that states, “Due to your status as a sex offender listed on the National Crime Information Center convicted Sexual Offender Registry, you must meet with the SVCC Threat Assessment Team to review your continued admission status.”
  2. The applicant must respond to the request within seven (7) working days to meet with the team. If the applicant does not respond within the 7 day request, then he/she will be denied continuing admission status and administratively withdrawn from courses if necessary.
  3. Via telephone, U.S. mail and electronic mail the applicant will be provided with a location, date and time to meet with the team. Failure of the applicant to appear will result in denied admission.
  4. The applicant will be asked to provide the following information when meeting with the team:
    • Disclosure of the nature of the offense for which he/she has been convicted,
    • Justification for consideration of admission or continuing admission.
  5. Decisions by the Threat Assessment Team will be made on a case by case basis after a review of the totality of the circumstances. The information sought may be the same that will allow an offender to be removed from the registry. Those include nature and number of offense(s), date of last offense, length of time from the last offense, treatment and/or counseling sought, and restitution completed. The team will make a recommendation about continued admission by a majority vote within twelve (12) working days of receiving the required information and submit their recommendation to the Vice President of academic and Workforce Programs.
  6. The Vice President of academic and Workforce Programs will inform the applicant by letter of the decision.
  7. The student may appeal the decision by letter directly to the Vice President of academic and Workforce Programs within seven (7) working days of the date of the letter.
  8. The Vice President of academic and Workforce Programs will review all documents provided by the Threat Assessment Team and may meet with the applicant to make a decision within seven (7) working days from the date of the appeal letter. The decision of the Vice-President of Academic and Student Affairs shall be final.

Sex Crimes Prevention Act
The federal Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act was enacted on October 28‚ 2000. The Law requires institutions of higher education to issue a statement advising the campus community where law enforcement information provided by a State concerning registered sex offenders may be obtained. It also requires sex offenders already required to register in a State to provide notice of each institution of higher education in that State at which the person is employed, carries on a vocation, or is a student. In the Commonwealth of Virginia convicted sex offenders must register with the Sex Offender and Crimes Against Minors Registry maintained by the Virginia Department of State Police. Information concerning offenders registered may be disclosed to any person requesting information on specific individuals in accordance with the law.