Skip to main content

Thursday, May 14, 2020

From the President

Posted: Thursday, May 14, 2020

Response to College Senate Recommendation: Policy on Grading

At its April 10, 2020 meeting, the College Senate voted in favor of a resolution on an addition to the DOPS Policy on Grading, Policy No. I:16:03, presented by the Instruction and Research Committee.


Policy Number: I:16:03
Date:  Updated April 2020
Subject: Policy on Grading

The college used letter grades to indicate the status of a student at the completion of a course.  All grades are awarded at the sole discretion of the faculty member responsible for the course.  A grade must be submitted for every student on the course roster at the end of the semester.  Students will be apprised of evaluation policies in each class at the beginning of every semester.  This information will also include notification, where appropriate, that the plus/minus grading system will be used as determined by the instructor.  Instructors will inform students of their standing in each course by the end of the ninth week of the semester or two-thirds of a summer session or intersemester. Questions regarding grading policies or an individual grade received in a particular course should be addressed to the instructor or to the department chair.  

Grades Awarded by the College:

A = Superior        



B = Above Average for undergraduate coursework; average for graduate coursework. B or 3.0 GPA is required minimum cumulative for graduate coursework.       



*C = Average        



**D = Below Average        

**E = Failure or Unofficial Withdrawal from a Course    

**EV = Failure, never attended 

S =  Satisfactory  

SD = Satisfactory with Distinction     

U = Unsatisfactory        

P = Pass; may not be given for graduate coursework       

F = Fail; may not be given for graduate coursework

* Note: courses with a grade of B-, C+ or C are below required average for graduate coursework, but may be used to meet graduate program degree requirements

** Note: courses with a grade of C- or below cannot be used to meet graduate program degree requirements

Letters Used to Indicate Status:

 I = Incomplete 

IP = In Progress

N = Grade Delayed

NR = Grade Not Required        

X = Grade Not Submitted       

W = Withdrawal

Explanation of Grades:

S (satisfactory) and U (unsatisfactory) grades are reserved for graduate theses, student teaching or other field experiences that are not readily evaluated by the normal letter grades and basic skills courses.

SD (Satisfactory with Distinction) is reserved for graduate theses.  S, SD and U grades may be given only for courses so designated.

P (pass) and F (fail) grades are given for undergraduate courses taken on a pass – fail basis.  They may be submitted only under proper authorization. Pass and Fail grades may not be used for graduate coursework.

W (withdrawal) grades may be submitted only when a student has formally withdrawn from a course.

I (incomplete) grades may be submitted only when the department chair or program coordinator has been properly notified. An instructor may submit a grade of I (Incomplete) only when circumstances leading to a student’s failure to complete course requirements are known to be beyond the student’s control (e.g., serious illness or unavailability of material).  The student must complete course requirements and the instructor must submit a grade change by the 10th week of the following spring or fall semester or the grade automatically converts to an E (Failure).  In the event that the instructor who granted the I grade is unable to evaluate whether the student has fulfilled the course requirements during the stipulated time period, the chair or program coordinator takes responsibility for evaluating the student’s work and changing the grade.

IP (in progress) grade of IP is reserved for graduate students who have not completed their thesis or project requirements. When work is completed, the instructor submits a grade change, replacing the IP grade with a final grade. If an instructor does not submit a final grade by the end of the second additional semester, the "IP" grade will automatically be recorded as an "E" or “U” unless an incomplete extension (722) is filed. A grade of N (Grade Delayed) may not be submitted for a thesis or project.      

N (grade delayed) grades may be given when research work or an internship carries over from one semester to another and when it is necessary to delay grading to a subsequent semester.  N grades may be submitted only with the permission of the department chair or program coordinator. A grade of N (Grade Delayed) may not be used for a graduate thesis or project course.

NR (grade not required) grade of NR is reserved for, and must be submitted for, any graduate level 721 Thesis/Project Continuation or 722 Thesis/Project Extending Course.

Incomplete Grades

An incomplete grade is a temporary grade issued for medical emergencies or life crisis or for planned extensions of undergraduate projects and studies.  Students must request an incomplete grade directly from the instructor.  An incomplete grade is converted to a letter grade by the 10th week of the following spring or fall semester. If the work is not completed by that time, the instructor will submit a grade based upon the amount of work completed.  If the instructor who granted the incomplete is not able to evaluate the student’s fulfillment of course requirements during the stipulated time period, the chair or program coordinator is responsible for changing the grade. Anyone not completing the course requirements within this time will automatically have a grade of E recorded.  

Pass – Fail Option

The pass-fail option permits any matriculated student to take an undergraduate course for credit without receiving a letter grade of A, B, C, D, E, or EV. The pass-fail option cannot be used for graduate courses. Students may enroll in one course each semester or summer on a pass-fail basis. All sessions combined make up the summer semester. A pass (P) grade provides credit but no quality points and is not counted in total hours used to determine cumulative average. A fail (F) grade is treated as a failure although the hours are not used in computing the cumulative average.

A pass-fail credit may be applied toward an undergraduate degree. Courses required for the student’s major and minor cannot be taken on a pass-fail basis. Courses taken as part of early childhood and childhood education program concentrations and distributions may not be taken pass-fail.

Any undergraduate course, except English composition 100-level courses and those required for completion of a major or a minor, may be taken on a pass-fail basis. Students must declare their intention to do so by the end of the 10th week of classes in any semester or after two-thirds of a Summer Session or January Term. After receiving the approval signature of the student’s adviser, a declaration of intent must be filed with the Registrar’s Office, Moot Hall, by the published deadline. An instructor may choose to substitute a letter grade for the pass if written consent from the student is received and the form is submitted before the end of the semester. Once an application for pass-fail has been submitted, the pass-fail option for that semester has been exhausted. Subsequent filing of a substitution form to receive a letter grade does not allow submission of another pass-fail application for that semester.

Students may not use pass-fail to repeat an undergraduate course for which a grade of C- or below was earned.

Note: Students are cautioned that the amount of pass-fail work permitted may jeopardize their chances for admission to graduate or professional school or for career placement.

Change of Grade

Grades submitted at the end of the semester are considered final.  In case of a clerical error or other extenuating circumstance resulting in an incorrect grade, a request for a grade change must be submitted by the instructor, with full written justification, to the appropriate Associate Dean.  See DOPS I:16:07 Change of Grade Policy

I hereby accept the recommendation of the College Senate and charge the provost with responsibility for overseeing the implementation of this policy change and for communicating the change to the campus community.