Academic Policies

English Proficiency

Students in the B.A. and lower programmes of CBTS are required to take English Grammar and Composition courses. These courses are foundational to the student’s work at CBTS and should be taken at the beginning of studies. B.A. students will do a year of English Grammar and Composition, students in the Diploma program will have two years of the course. In the C.Th. programme, the students will have an English curriculum that covers five years of their studies. It is expected that the standards of English taught in these classes will be seen in written and spoken assignments in other courses. After completing this course, a student may be required to re-take the course if his or her performance in the programme falls short of expected standards.

All students in the M.A. and M.Div. programmes must show that they have an acceptable level of English Grammar and Composition. It is assumed that students in the M.A. and M.Div. programmes already have competence in English Grammar and Composition. Each student’s ability to write and communicate in English will be judged through taking the English Grammar and Composition course and submitting written assignments as part of the course requirements. This course carries 3 credit hours (for the purpose of calculating the student’s work load) but the credit hours are not counted towards the degree requirement. The rationale is that English is an under graduate level course and is offered here for remedial purposes.

M.A. and M.Div. students who already have proficiency in English and believe that this course is not for them will be given the option to test out of the course. This exam will take place during the first week of class. Those who take the exam and score 80% and above will be exempted from the part of the course being offered that semester.

Throughout their programme, all students will continue to submit written assignments that must meet acceptable English Grammar and Composition standards. Faculty reserve the right not to grade a paper that does not show accuracy and care in the writing process. A lower grade will also be given for papers which show deficiencies in writing skills. For these reasons, it is strongly recommended that all students take the course at the beginning of their programme.

Academic Standing

A student is in good academic standing if he or she maintains a cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 70%, conducts his/her personal lifestyle with spiritual and moral integrity, is a law abiding citizen, and meets all financial obligations to the school. Each student is expected to be in good health to be able to do the required course work. The administration of the school reserves the right to discontinue any student who does not meet the above standards.

Change of Academic Status

If a student wants to change from full-time to part-time, he or she must apply in writing to the office of the Dean. Likewise, a student changing from part-time to full-time must submit an application to the office of the Dean for such a change. If the application is approved, the student will be required to submit a plan of study drawn up in consultation with his or her programme advisor. Whenever there is an academic status change, a fee of 5000 cfa will be charged. Part-time students are those who are taking 8 hours or less and full-time students are those taking 9 hours and above.

Academic Probation/Termination

The following are rules that apply to probation and termination.

 Academic Probation
Any student who fails to maintain a cumulative GPA of 70% will be placed on probation beginning the following term. In other words, if in the first term, a student’s GPA falls below 70%, he or she will be on probation the second semester. This is because a grade point below 70% is unacceptable for graduation.

Academic Termination
When placed on probation, a student may not take more than 15 credit hours during the semester he or she is on probation. In the event that a student continues to fall below the 70% grade point average, he or she may be terminated from CBTS. A student will remain on probation until he or she attains the required grade point average, but if there is no evidence of steady progress, the student will be asked to withdraw from the programme.

Temporary Pardon on Health Grounds
A student with health problems (attested by a medical officer), who is unable to complete course work, may be given permission by the office of the Dean to stay out of class for a period of time. In such a case, the student’s situation will be made known to the teacher of the course, and a time agreed upon when the student will be able to complete the work. The work must be completed within the agreed upon time. Failure to do so will result in the student having to retake the course. See the section on “Incomplete Grades” for an explanation of the procedure.

Validation of Courses

A student who has taken a course before can seek to be excused from the course. In such a case, an examination will be administered to the student by the teacher of the particular course. If he or she passes the exam with a minimum score of 70%, the script of the exam and the grade must be forwarded to the office of the Dean by the teacher. When a student is excused from the course, it does not reduce the credit hours to be taken for graduation. It simply means that the student will be allowed to take a different course in the same area, and the validated course will be replaced in the student’s transcript by the course taken at the same or higher level. A student who initiates this process will be charged a validation fee of 5000 cfa. 

All courses must be validated before a student can graduate. In other words, while in the programme, any course that is registered for must be validated. A student will not be allowed to graduate when he or she has failed any course while in the programme. When a student receives a failing grade in a course, he cannot change that grade by doing more assignments. He or she will have to retake the course. The Academic Office will not change a grade that has been submitted and entered into the student’s transcript. In rare instances when this is necessary, the teacher will be the one to appeal to the Academic Office in writing stating the reasons for the change of grade. Evidence that justifies the change of grade will be required from the teacher before the case can be considered.

Academic Advisor

Advisors assigned to students will advise them about which courses to take. It is very important that students have good relationships with their advisors. The advisor helps the student to plan his/her course of study in accordance with the requirements of the programme.  However, it is the student’s responsibility to be sure he or she has completed the requirements of the programme before graduation.


Students are expected to pre-register for courses at the time specified by the Academic Office, usually during the previous semester. Failure to do so will result in a late registration fee of 5000 cfa. When school begins the following semester, final registration will take place during registration days. Students should note that by registering late, they may not have access to all the courses desired. Registration is closed after the first week of classes.  Students should plan their registration carefully, after consulting with their advisors. It is the student’s responsibility to see that he or she meets all the requirements for graduation. Students who do not follow the curriculum carefully may find it difficult to graduate in the desired year.  Also, all financial obligations to the school must be met before a student can be allowed in class. This is done by either paying all the fees or giving evidence to the school of adequate financial sources to cover the cost of education.

Change of Registration

All changes made after registration is closed must be made through the Dean’s office. A student is expected to fill out a change of registration form to either add or drop a course. A course dropped without a change of registration form will result in a fail on the student’s transcript. A student may drop a class at anytime during the first two weeks of the term without penalty. After the first two weeks of the semester, any class dropped will carry a failing grade on the transcript. Students have the first two weeks of classes to add a course or drop a course.

Change of Concentration

Students may change concentrations by making a written request to the Dean, who will make note of it in the student’s file and notify the advisor involved. B.A. students have up to two years to choose a concentration. During the two years, they can concentrate on the core courses while deciding on an area of concentration. M.A. and M.Div. students must settle on their concentration after the first year of studies.

Course Load

Students entering the B.A. and M.A./M.Div. programmes at CBTS have a certain number of credit hours to complete before graduation. This means that they will have to space their work according to their ability. Some students are able to carry heavier loads than others. Below is an explanation of the course load requirements (does not apply to students in the Certificate of Theology and Diploma of Theology programmes).

Minimum Load
A full time student at CBTS can carry a minimum load of 9-11 credit hours per semester.  This load is recommended for students who have other ministries that they are involved in, students studying under academic probation, and students who are performing below average academic standards.

Average Load
The average load for students at CBTS is 12-15 credit hours per semester. This is the recommended load for most students who struggle a bit in their studies and want to maintain a good grade point average.

Maximum Load
The maximum load is 16-18 hours per semester. This is a heavy load and is recommended only for people with exceptional academic ability. No student is allowed to sign up for 18 hours unless approved by the Academic Dean’s office. The student will have to provide evidence that he or she is able to carry such a load and perform well. There are three things that will allow a student to take more than the average load: (1) A GPA of 80% and above, (2) permission from the academic advisor, and (3) permission from the Academic Dean.

Assignments outside of Class

For each class period (55 minutes), a student is expected to give the equivalent of two class hours of preparation outside of class. For example, for a class that meets for 4 hours a week, a student should expect to put in 8 hours of preparation for that class each week. Similarly, a student taking a total of 15 credit hours should plan on working 30 hours a week outside of class in order to do the assignments for the courses.


Students are expected to attend all classes in which they are enrolled. Even when a student misses a class, he or she is responsible for all the academic work missed. A student may not miss more than six class hours during a semester. Absences must be approved by the teacher in each course. In the case of an emergency or ill health, a student can be absent from class without advance notice but must have someone notify the teachers within 24 hours. An absence is an absence, meaning that even those caused by medical emergencies will be counted toward the six allowed class period absences. Note that absences are measured by hours and not by days. If a student is absent from class on a day where the class meets for three hours, he or she has missed three of the six allowed.


Tardiness is disruptive to the programmes of CBTS. Students are to make every effort to be on time to class. If for some reason the student has to be late, the teacher should be informed ahead of time. Being late to class 3 times for any reason, will be considered as an absence.


Telephones are not allowed in classes. If you must have your phone with you, it should be turned off completely. A teacher will send a student out of class whose phone rings or who is found manipulating his or her phone. When a student is sent out of class, he will be marked as absent. Class periods are strictly for teaching and studying.

Withdrawal from School

A student may desire to withdraw from CBTS either temporarily or permanently. The reasons for this withdrawal must be deemed necessary by the school administration. Thus, the student will need to seek permission in writing through the office of the Academic Dean. The application should contain reasons for the withdrawal.

Temporary Withdrawal
In the case of a temporary withdrawal, the student should indicate when he plans to return to complete the programme. A written application for reinstatement to the school is required.

Terminal Withdrawal
A student may choose to withdraw permanently or be asked by the school to withdraw. This decision will be necessary when it is deemed that continuation is practically, morally, spiritually, or academically impossible. A student who is so discharged may not seek to resume at a later date. The only option for such a student is to reapply afresh. It should be noted though, that a student discharged by CBTS on a permanent basis is not likely to be readmitted based on a fresh application, unless there is very clear evidence of change in the situation that led to the dismissal.

Transfer of Credits

A student can transfer credits from another school, provided CBTS accepts the credibility of the school. In the case of the transfer of credits, no credits will be accepted for which a student has already been granted a degree. In other words, a student who has already obtained a degree for credits taken, cannot use those credits again for another degree sought.


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