Grading Policies and Procedures

Assigning Grades

Follow these steps to assign grades:

  • Log into our Student Information System (SIS).
  • From your Faculty/Advisor home page, on the left side in the “My Classes” area, click to expand the appropriate class.
  • Click the A+ Icon (grade roster) for the class. You will see the grade roster page. Note for faculty with large classes of hundreds of students: SIS can take two or more minutes to respond to a roster or grade list request.
  • Next to the appropriate student, select the desired grade from the roster grade drop-down menu. Repeat for any additional students.
  • Click “Submit Grades.” The grade will now appear in the roster grade column (without the drop-down).
  • Submitted grades will be rolled up to official grades every night.
  • Students can’t see grades until they become official.
  • For classes with multiple faculty members, you will only see your students.
  • More detailed instructions with pictures.
  • If an error was made in submitting grades or an incomplete grade needs to be changed after the incomplete work has been submitted and graded, faculty can change the grade directly in SIS. Detailed instructions to update an official grade can be found on the SIS Faculty help page.

Grades

The standing of the student in each subject is expressed by one of the following letters.

  • A. Superior work. 
  • B. Meritorious work.
  • C. Work without marked merit or defect.
  • COM, I. Complete, incomplete. Instructors should assign these grades to auditors taking continuing education classes (faculty member must submit to the registrar’s office a completed incomplete form which can be found in SIS).  
  • CR, NC. Credit, no credit. Instructors should assign these grades to SMFA undergraduate students taking studio art courses. A grade of NC is not acceptable for degree credit. 
  • D. Unsatisfactory work but allowable for credit, subject to the restrictions specified under the requirements for graduation. Some departments disallow credit toward the concentration requirement.
  • EP. Exceptional Pass (EP), established in and for the spring 2020, fall 2020, and spring 2021 semesters only, will confer credit but no grade points for GPA calculation and will fulfill all degree requirements, including those for concentration or major.
  • P. Passing work (D- or better) for courses taken under the pass-fail option, and for selected courses offered only pass-fail by departments. Grade point average is not affected. Students may select this option without the faculty member’s knowledge.
  • PI. Permanent Incomplete. Do not assign this grade. All incomplete grades will turn into permanent incompletes six weeks into the following semester.
  • F. Failure; no credit is received. A grade of F is included in the grade point average.
  • NG. No grade since the instructor has no current knowledge of the student and no basis for assessing work not submitted.
  • S, U. Satisfactory, Unsatisfactory. Instructors should assign these grades to SMFA graduate students taking studio art courses.  A grade of "U" is not acceptable for degree credit.
  • Y. Year-long course (applicable for graduate level courses only).

In computing a grade average, each course grade of A counts as 4.00; B, 3.00; C, 2.00; D, 1.00.

Grading Policy for Extraordinary Grades

NG (No Grade)

This grade is appropriate if you have no current knowledge of the student, or the student’s situation in the class is unresolved. For example, a student who stopped attending class during the term, stopped handing in work, and did not complete enough of the course to merit a letter grade or an Incomplete. (You also have the option of assigning whatever letter grade the student’s work merits, including an F.) If you are not sure how to grade a particular student because of unusual circumstances, feel free to contact the student’s associate dean.

I (Incomplete)

It is the responsibility of the student to request a grade of Incomplete before the required work is due. Incompletes should not be assigned without a direct request from the student or their Advising Dean. An Incomplete may be awarded only if the student has done substantial work in the course, attended regularly, the instructor judges the reasons for granting incomplete status to be valid, and the instructor determines that the work can be completed in the time specified on the Incomplete Form. It is recommended that instructors wait until at least 10 weeks into the semester before assigning an Incomplete. Because Incompletes can affect a student’s academic standing, it is suggested that instructors discuss the granting of an Incomplete with the student’s Advising Dean.

If an Incomplete is granted, all work in the course must be completed six weeks into the following semester (fall or spring only), or the date the instructor has stated on the Incomplete Form. It is advised that instructors set a deadline for the start of the semester so that students do not carry incompletes into their next semester while managing a full course load. A grade should be submitted two weeks after the work is received by the instructor. Under special circumstances, a student may request from the instructor an extension of the deadline. If the student does not complete the missing work by the deadline, the professor should calculate the grade to reflect the impact of the missing work on overall course grade and submit the final grade through the Grade Edit feature on SIS. Or, in some circumstances, the professor may decide to let the Incomplete stand as a Permanent Incomplete (but the student will not earn credit for the course). If the student completes the work after the set deadline, the professor still has the option (at the professor’s discretion) to accept the work and change the grade to bestow credit. The instructor of record may change the Incomplete to the final grade at any point prior to graduation. Any such agreement should be indicated via the Incomplete Form.

The Incomplete form may be found on the faculty SIS homepage under “Faculty Forms”. The instructor is responsible for specifying on the form the deadline for submission of work and the conditions that the student must satisfy to receive a grade. A copy of this form will be sent to the student and their Advising Dean.

Grades of Incomplete and changes from an incomplete to a letter grade may be completed online via SIS. Detailed instructions for online grade changes may be found on the SIS documentation site.

Grade Changes 

Submitted grades are final and not subject to negotiation. Exceptions should be limited to correcting clerical and calculation errors. Following a conversation with the course instructor, undergraduates who believe that there is an error with their grade may appeal to the department chair or program director and, if necessary, subsequently to a dean of the faculty in Ballou Hall. Any request for a change in a course grade must be made to the course instructor no later than six weeks into the following semester.

Faculty who wish to change a student’s grade may now do so online via SIS. Paper change of grade forms will no longer be accepted. Detailed instructions for online grade changes may be found on the SIS documentation site.

Incompletes

If an incomplete is granted, all work in the course must be completed six weeks into the following semester (fall or spring only), or the date the instructor has stated on the incomplete form. A grade should be submitted two weeks after the work is received by the instructor. Under special circumstances, a student may request from the instructor an extension of the deadline. If the student does not complete the missing work by the deadline, the professor should calculate the grade to reflect the impact of the missing work on overall course grade and submit the final grade through the Grade Edit feature on SIS, or, in some circumstances, the professor may decide to let the Incomplete stand (but the student will not earn credit for the course). If the student completes the work after the set deadline, the professor still has the option (at the professor’s discretion) to accept the work and change the grade to bestow credit. The instructor of record may change the Incomplete to the final grade at any point prior to graduation. Any such agreement should be submitted in writing to Dowling Hall via the incomplete form.

Grades of incomplete and changes from an incomplete to a letter grade may be completed online via SIS. Detailed instructions for online grade changes may be found on the SIS documentation site.