Credit-bearing Courses

Attendance Policy

Enrolled students are expected to complete the entire course, and even unavoidable absences do not relieve them from being responsible for work assigned during the course. Students may not attend classes until they have officially registered for the course through FAES’s online registration portal or by submitting a complete Enrollment Form to FAES.

Enrollment Options

  • Credit

One credit corresponds to 15 standard classroom hours. A standard classroom hour is defined as 50 minutes of instruction time and 10 minutes break. Students registered for credit must complete all coursework as required by the instructor.

  • Audit

An auditor must pay the same tuition fee and meet the same prerequisites as a credit student. They receive full privileges of class participation, if they choose to exercise them. An auditor does not receive a grade or credit; they receive a grade of “AUD.”

Enrollment Status Changes

Students may request status change from credit to audit, or vice versa, provided the request is submitted in writing to the FAES Academic Programs at registrar@faes.org and in accordance with the published timeline. Reporting a credit- audit change to the instructor does not constitute an official change. Students who have been sponsored by their home institutions or employers to take FAES courses must submit written approval from their Administrative Officers when requesting a change from credit to audit.

Certificates and Badges

  • Certificate of Completion

Students who complete the required curriculum in either of the three Advanced Studies programs will earn a certificate of completion. A physical copy of the certificate will be mailed to the student's address at no cost.

  • The 'Dean's Seal of Excellence' Digital Badge

Students may be eligible for the 'Dean's Seal of Excellence', a digital badge issued by the FAES Academic Programs that signifies successful completion of a specific series of courses and/or outstanding performance during coursework.

  • The 'Prevailing Science' Interdisciplinary Digital Badge

Launched in September 2020, the Prevailing Science badge offers students the opportunity to gain an broader understanding of a trending scientific topic by taking an array of credit-bearing courses from at least 3 different departments over the course of an academic year. More information on the Digital Badges page.

  • The 'Bioinformatics Curiosity' Digital Badge

Our most recent digital credential launched in March 2021 is awarded to students who have successfully completed specific Bioinformatics (BIOF) courses and workshops since January 2021. More information on the Digital Badges page.

Course Levels and Grading Policy

The FAES Academic Programs at NIH offers courses at the following levels:

1 to 99 

general adult education (may not be at undergraduate level)

100 to 199

lower-college level (Freshman/Sophomore)

200 to 299

upper-college level (Junior/Senior)

300 to 399

senior and graduate levels

400 to 499

graduate students and qualified seniors

500 to 600

graduate and/or professional level

600 to 700

Board Examination subspecialty courses

FAES Academic Programs at NIH courses are graded as follows:






















Minimum Passing










Select courses are Pass/Fail basis.

*“I” indicates that the required coursework has not been completed. “I” may be changed to another grade if the student provides the instructor with a satisfactory explanation and arranges to complete the work within a reasonable time. As of 7/1/2020, an incomplete (I) received must be resolved by the end of the following semester or grade automatically converts to a failing (F) grade.

Course Materials

  • Textbooks

Required and recommended textbooks can be added to a purchase at the time of registration. Book orders are fulfilled by the FAES Bookstore within 1-2 business days pending availability. The textbooks will be shipped for a flat fee ($10.00) or in-store pick-up is available at no cost.

  • Textbook Returns

A full refund will be given for textbooks unopened and in original condition returned prior to one week from the first day of class. Textbooks purchased after the first week of class (but before the final week of class) must be returned within 2 business days of purchase. Textbooks purchased during the last week of classes or final exams are not returnable/refundable. Any textbooks returned via mail, will be at the customer’s expense.

  • Copyright

All course materials are the property of FAES and the author or the publisher and are to be used for the student’s individual academic purpose only. Any dissemination, copying, reproducing, modification, displaying, or transmitting of any course material for any other purpose is prohibited, will be considered misconduct, and may be cause for disciplinary action. In addition, encouraging academic dishonesty by distributing information about course materials or assignments which would give an unfair advantage to others may violate the FAES Academic Integrity policy. Course materials may not be exchanged or distributed for commercial purposes, for compensation, or for any purpose other than use by students enrolled in the course. Distributions of course materials may be subject to disciplinary action.

Course Withdrawal Policy

  • Drop Policy

Students may drop courses through self-service by logging into the Student Portal until the 2nd week of the term.

Alternatively, the intent to drop a course at the FAES Academic Programs must be made in writing to the Academic Programs at registrar@faes.org. Reporting a course withdrawal to the instructor is not considered official.

The dropped course will not appear on students' academic transcript.

  • Sponsored Students

Students whose courses will be paid for by their employers need to coordinate in advance with their Administrative Officers or HR departments to determine whether they are liable to pay the prorated portion of the tuition in cases when they wish to drop a course.

Students who are recipients of an FAES scholarship will have the prorated tuition withheld when refunds are to be paid due to dropping a course.

  • Involuntary Withdrawals

Students are allowed to drop a course involuntarily for the following reasons:

  1. Illness of student or immediate family member (child, parent, spouse, or member of household).
  2. Death of student or immediate family member (see above).
  3. Called to active military duty via enlistment, activation, or deployment.

In all cases, appropriate written documents of substantiation must accompany the request for withdrawal. Examples include: physician’s note specifying the dates of treatment and that the illness made it impossible for student to continue enrollment in classes; notice, newspaper article, or funeral program; copies of military orders signed by an appropriate official, etc.

Tuition Refund Policy

To obtain a refund, a course must be officially dropped by the refund deadline, as indicated in the academic calendar. The intent to drop (withdraw from) a course must be made in writing to the FAES Academic Programs at registrar@ faes.org. Reporting a course withdrawal to the instructor is not considered official.

Refund of tuition fees will be granted only in cases when the FAES Academic Programs is notified in writing and in accordance with the published schedule for full-semester courses. For a refund schedule for courses of shorter duration, please contact the FAES Academic Programs at registrar@faes.org.

Refunds will be computed as of the date the written intent to drop is received in the FAES Academic Programs Office. In no case will tuition be reduced or refunded because of lack of attendance in classes or because students failed to consult with the instructor in advance of registration, in cases when the course description indicates that students must email the instructor for permission to enroll in the class.

A week before the start of term 100% tuition refund
During the 1st week 80% tuition refund
During the 2nd week 50% of tuition refund
After the 2nd week no refund and no withdrawal will be granted

Note: All refunds are subject to a $25 refund/withdrawal fee per course. Refunds will not be granted to students who do not have a clear financial record with FAES.

Note: Fees (i.e. technology fee) are non-refundable.

Inclement Weather Policy

FAES Academic Programs onsite courses are held in federal government facilities. Consequently, FAES follows the snow and dismissal procedures of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM). When government offices are opened late or closed early or all day due to hazardous weather conditions, or when hazardous weather conditions are probable for the daytime workshops or evening academic courses, classes will not be held.

FAES will notify students and faculty in advance of any delayed start or cancellation due to inclement weather. If in doubt, students are welcome to send inquiries to registrar@faes.org or call 301-496-7976.

Courses Canceled by FAES Academic Programs at NIH

FAES reserves the right to cancel a course due to insufficient enrollment. In such cases, students will receive a 100% refund of tuition and fees. Further, FAES reserves the right to limit registration, and to cancel, combine, terminate, or postpone courses, and to require the withdrawal of any student at any time for any reason that FAES deems sufficient.


Registration Cancellation Policy

All cancellations must be received in writing via email to registrar@faes.org.
Cancellations received after 4:00 pm (ET) on business days or received on non-business days are time marked for the following business day.
All refund payments will be processed by the start of the initial workshop.

Refund Policy

100% tuition refund for registrations cancelled 14 or more calendar days prior to the start of the workshop.
50% tuition refund for registrations cancelled between 4 to 13 calendar days prior to the start of the workshop.
No refund will be issued for registrations cancelled 3 calendar days or less prior to the start of the workshop.

Workshops Cancelled by FAES Academic Programs at NIH

FAES reserves the right to cancel a workshop due to low enrollment. In such cases, students will receive a 100% refund of tuition and fees. Further, FAES reserves the right to limit registration, and to cancel, combine, terminate, or postpone workshops, and to require the withdrawal of any student at any time for any reason that FAES deems sufficient.

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