Athens State University Grading System

Policy Number: II.05
Policy Level: Operating Policy

Originally Issued: March 13, 2013
Implementation Date: August 19, 2013
Revised: November 7, 2013
Revised:  January 13, 2016
Reviewed:  February 12, 2019

Policy Owner: Provost/ VP Academic Affairs
Policy Implementation: Registrar

I. Policy Statement and Purpose

In accordance with Athens State University’s educational mission, this policy establishes the standards and system used for awarding grades for coursework completed at Athens State University. The standards and grading system are based on comparable practices at other institutions of higher education, and also recognize the unique status of the University as an upper-division institution.

II. Letter Grades

Letter grades awarded for Athens State University courses and which may appear on Athens State University transcripts are:

  • A – passing, excellent
  • B – passing, good
  • C – passing, acceptable
  • D – passing, barely acceptable
  • F – failure, unacceptable
  • I – incomplete
  • IP – in progress (assigned only when grades are pending, e.g., transient student grades)
  • P – passing (assigned only for specific practicum or work experience-based courses)
  • W – withdrawn
  • WC – withdrawn administratively due to a conduct violation (see Student Code of Conduct)
  • AU – Audit

Undergraduate
Grades of “A”, “B”, or “C” represent levels of accomplishment that indicate a student is performing satisfactorily. A grade of “D” is considered inferior and is the minimum level of accomplishment that will allow a student to continue study at the University if overall academic performance is satisfactory (see the policy Standards of Academic Performance). A grade of “F” is unacceptable and may be assigned when a student either: fails to meet the minimum course requirements specified in the course syllabus or assigned by the instructor, or; voluntarily discontinues class attendance without officially withdrawing.

A grade of “I” (incomplete) will be given only under extenuating circumstances, and only through consultation with and by written permission of the instructor. To obtain an incomplete in a course, a student must have completed at least 50% of the work required for the course. If an “I” is given, the time limit allotted for a student to complete the course requirements is at the discretion of the instructor, but will generally be no later than the end of the next semester. If the course requirements are not completed in the time frame allotted, the grade of “I” becomes an “F” unless the time limit is extended by the instructor. For purposes of GPA computation the “I” is evaluated as “F” until course requirements are completed and a grade change is made.

A grade of “W” will be assigned to a student who officially withdraws from a course before the date of the first day of final exams as published in the academic schedule for the term of enrollment. See the policy Withdrawal from Courses for additional details.

Graduate
Grades of “A”, “B” – represent levels of accomplishment that indicate a graduate student is performing satisfactorily.

Grades of “C” – do not represent a sufficient level of accomplishment. Only two final course grades of “C” are allowed to count as fulfillment of course requirements.

Grades of “D” or “F” – do not represent levels of accomplishment and may be assigned when a student either: fails to meet the minimum course requirements specified in the course syllabus or assigned by the instructor, or; voluntarily discontinues class attendance without officially withdrawing. Final course grades of D or F will not count as fulfillment of course requirements and require the student to repeat the courses. See Repetition of Courses Policy.

Grade of “I”– A course grade of “I” (incomplete) will be given under extraordinary circumstances, and only through consultation with and by written permission of the instructor. To obtain an Incomplete in a course, a student must have completed at least 50% of the work required for the course. If an “I” is given, the time limit allotted for a student to complete the course requirements is at the discretion of the instructor, but will generally be no later than the end of the next semester. If the course requirements are not completed in the time frame allotted, the grade of “I” becomes an “F”. For purposes of GPA computation the “I” is evaluated as “F” until course requirements are completed and a final grade change is made.

A grade of “W” will be assigned to a student who officially withdraws from a course before the date of the first day of final exams as published in the academic schedule for the term of enrollment. See the policy Withdrawal from Courses for additional details.

Audit – AU – A graduate student may enroll in a graduate course for audit on a space available basis and on the approval of the Dean of the College. Fees for audited courses are the same as for courses taken for credit. Audited courses do not count toward the minimum class load required for eligibility for financial aid and/or veterans’ benefits.

III. Quality Points

For each hour of credit in a course, quality points are awarded based on the letter grade earned for the course. These quality points are used in calculating grade point averages, and are assigned as follows:

  • “A” – 4.0 Quality Points per semester hour
  • “B” – 3.0 Quality Points per semester hour
  • “C” – 2.0 Quality Points per semester hour
  • “D” – 1.0 Quality Point per semester hour
  • “F” – 0.0 Quality Points per semester hour

The total number of quality points earned for a course is calculated by multiplying the quality point value for the letter grade earned by the number of semester hours the course was worth. For example, a student earning the grade of “A” in a 3-semester hour course would be awarded 12 quality points. A student earning the grade of “C” in a 4-semester hour course would be awarded 8 quality points.

While grades of “AU”, “IP”, “P”, “W”, and “WC” may appear on the Athens State transcript, these grades are not awarded quality points and are not used in calculating grade point averages.

IV. Grade Point Average (GPA)

Several types of grade point averages may be calculated depending on the program or major a student is pursuing. GPAs appear on the Athens State transcript unless otherwise noted.

  • Transfer – calculated for all coursework completed at other postsecondary institutions. This GPA is calculated and used to determine eligibility for admission. See the policy Transfer and Acceptance of Academic Credit for additional details.
  • Semester – calculated for all coursework completed at Athens State University in a particular semester or term.
  • Institutional – calculated for all coursework completed at Athens State University.
  • Program/major specific – calculated for specific coursework (e.g., courses required for teacher certification) in Colleges or departments that have special requirements in the program or major. This GPA is calculated and used only to determine eligibility or fulfillment of College or departmental requirements, and does not appear on the Athens State University transcript.

GPAs are calculated by dividing the total number of quality points earned by the total number of completed hours in the category. For example, a student that has completed 24 semester hours at Athens State University and who has earned 81 quality points would have an institutional GPA of 3.38. GPAs are rounded to the second decimal place.

V. Responsibility for this Operating Policy

Policy Owner

As part of the initial approval of this policy by the President and subsequent to the original dissemination of the policy, the President has assigned the Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs as the policy owner for the ongoing evaluation, review, and approval of this policy. Subsequent reviews and revisions to this policy must be in accordance with approved operating policy procedures and processes.

This policy will be reviewed every three years or more frequently as needed and updated/published in the University’s Policy Library.

Responsibility for Policy Implementation

The President has assigned the responsibility of implementing this policy to the Registrar, under the direction of the Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Support Services, and the Assistant Vice President for Enrollment Management.