Glossary of Common College Terms | BCTC

Glossary of Common College Terms


The purpose of academic advising is to help students reach their educational goals. Advisors are the ones responsible for helping students choose a program and ensuring that they meet all the requirements to graduate with a degree in that field. Our advising team is here to make sure that you stay on track. At BCTC, students must consult their academic advisor each semester to enroll in classes. 

Time frame when students can drop or add courses to their course load without consequences, including incomplete marks on their transcript.

Blackboard is the platform BCTC uses to host online classes. Students will use Blackboard to complete assignments, connect with instructors and check their grades!

*Students will not be able to see their courses in Blackboard until the instructor makes it visible. This may not be until the first day of the semester

You can probably guess what the Bursar's Office is for! All tuition & costs are paid to the college through the Bursar's Office. Your student can arrange a payment plan or pay their bill in full through their student self-service portal in MyPath. 

A non-degree credential that proves knowledge or skill in a specific area. Valued credentials vary by industry and job title.

Non-negotiable requirements a student must meet to earn a degree.

Classes students choose to fulfill a general education requirement or just because they’re interested in a topic outside of their major’s core courses.

Embedded Tutoring attaches a tutor to a specific section of a course. This means students can get more individualized and tailored assistance in a class.

Embedded Tutors form ongoing relationships with faculty and students to promote continuous success.

The FAFSA is the free application students must fill out to see if they qualify for financial aid. Visit government aid website for basic eligibility requirements.

The FAFSA asks for information about you and your family’s finances, including tax returns, so you may need to help your student complete it!

Students do not have to be admitted to BCTC  to file the FAFSA. However, a financial offer will not be made until you have been fully admitted into a degree-seeking program. 

The Federal Work-Study (FWS) program, commonly referred to as just "work-study", is a federally funded program in the United States that assists students with the costs of post-secondary education.  Examples of work-study jobs you could have: Peer Mentor, Tutor, and Office Assistant.

Professionals who help you navigate financial processes and interpret your financial aid packages.

Financial aid can come from federal, state, school, and private sources to help you pay for college or career school. Watch the video to learn about the different types of Federal Student Aid available to your student! 

A college student who is the first in their family to go to college.

A matriculated student is admitted, registered for classes, and in good academic standing at a college or university.

Ok, so what is MyPath?  Finding your way among all the technology systems you need for your digital school day can be tough. So many places, so many links, and so many logins! MyPath is a better way! Sign in once, and then have direct single-sign-on access to the systems and sources of information you need. Students can access their email, Office 365, Blackboard, student self-service, and more- all in one place! 

Times when you can meet with your professor to discuss the material being presented in class or other related interests you have.

A peer mentor is a current BCTC student that can help support fellow students. Mentors can assist their peers by helping them study, navigating online learning, and more! 

The BCTC Personal Counseling department offers free and confidential services to those in need of support. Even if you don’t necessarily need counseling, they offer weekly workshops on a variety of topics such as stress management, coping skills, and more!

After you’ve been accepted, you may need to take placement tests. Colleges use placement tests in subjects like math and English to check the academic skill levels of entering students. Once you’ve taken a placement test, your advisor can place you in classes at the right level!

Courses required to take more advanced courses or apply to a program.

The date by which prospective students must submit their applications to be most strongly considered, usually for admissions and scholarships.

A person who leads and instructs a particular course. The professors and instructors you work with at BCTC come from all different backgrounds and experiences. Get to know them!

The registrar’s office is responsible for many administrative academic duties like registering students for classes, preparing student transcripts, preparing class schedules, and analyzing enrollment statistics.


The process through which students sign up for their classes each term.

When you apply to BCTC, the admissions team reviews your application to see if you are a Kentucky resident or out-of-state resident. If it is determined that you are an out-of-state resident and you wish to apply for in-state residency, you will need to complete and submit the notarized affidavit, along with supporting documentation, to the Office of Admissions by the term deadline. Check to see the current deadlines!

So, what is SAP? SAP can affect your financial aid. Read more here:  

"Federal Regulations mandate that a student receiving financial aid under Title IV programs must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) in their program of study regardless of whether financial aid is awarded each semester." 

This means that students must meet certain standards to receive Federal Aid. The standards are as follows: 

  • Cumulative Grade Point Average (Qualitative) - Students must maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA. 
  • Credit Hour Completion (Quantitative) - Students must complete at least 67% of all classes attempted. This includes transferred courses and repeated coursework.   
  • Degree Completion (Maximum Time Frame or MTF) – Students must complete the program of study within 150% of the required hours. 

Keep in mind: students who fail to maintain SAP are no longer eligible for Federal Aid and some Kentucky State Aid Programs. 

BCTC provides a diverse selection of scholarships to support the financial needs of our students. While criteria vary with each scholarship, most are based on financial need. Some scholarships also emphasize strong academic needs and/or special interests. Funding for BCTC scholarships comes from the state government, individuals, businesses, and organizations. Check out the Scholarship page for more information.

The Spotlight Instruction Series (SIS) provides additional support (workshops) outside of normal class time to help you achieve success.

The Student Accessibility Services (SAS) office at Bluegrass Community & Technical College provides a full range of services to more than 500 students each year who have disabilities. SAS goals are to ensure equal access and full participation for persons with disabilities in post-secondary education as outlined by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. 


Wondering if you qualify for services? 


BCTC uses the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as a guide to define disability. A condition that substantially limits a major life activity (such as walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, and learning) and is covered under the ADA makes a student eligible for services from SAS. Services can be provided to students who are deaf or hard of hearing, students with learning disabilities, traumatic brain injuries, chronic health conditions (such as diabetes, epilepsy, HIV/AIDS, psychiatric disabilities, etc.), mobility, visual, speech, and coordination impairments.  

Email SAS 

A syllabus is your guide to a course and what will be expected of you in the course. Generally, it will include course policies, rules and regulations, required texts, and a schedule of assignments. You can also find your instructor’s contact information on this document!

Documentation of a student's permanent academic record, including all courses taken, all grades and honors received, and degrees conferred to the student.

A transfer pathway is an officially approved agreement used to assist students in taking the appropriate courses at BCTC that will transfer for credit toward a bachelor's degree at partnering colleges and universities. Visit the Transfer Information page to see some of the transfer pathways we have in place.

The purpose of tutoring is to help students help themselves, or to assist or guide them to the point at which they become an independent learner, and thus no longer need a tutor. The goal of the tutoring program is to provide the resources to help strengthen your knowledge and understanding of the material in your college classes. It also promotes the processes of active learning, independence, and motivation. BCTC has a full staff of tutors for many different subject areas and we offer both virtual and in-person tutoring! Visit the tutoring page to see current tutor availability.

To drop a class after the add/drop grace period. Withdrawing often means receiving a W on your transcript.

Please email if you have a term we should add!