Empire State College Grading and Evaluation Policy for Undergraduate Programs Revised

By Alison Brust, records specialist, SUNY Empire State College

September 11, 2015

Businessman writing 2015 with a red marker on the screen The Empire State College Grading and Evaluation Policy for Undergraduate Programs has been revised, effective September 2015. For your convenience, here are some significant changes:

*Definitions and statements about learning and success have been made more specific. Notably, the definitions of Summative and Formative Evaluation.

  • Summative Evaluation is the assessment of a student’s educational development compared to a standard or benchmark at the end of an educational period, such as a semester. A final course grade is one form of summative evaluation.
  • Formative Evaluation is developmental feedback given periodically and/or episodically as part of a study, course, or workshop to determine the type and/or direction of further efforts toward the educational goal of the study or course.

*Letter grades now include an F Grade. The instructor will submit a grade of F when a student engages in a study or course throughout the term of enrollment and fails to complete it in a satisfactory and sufficient manner. The grade of F replaces the No Credit (NC) and will impact a student’s G.P.A.

*Grades A through D- remain the same.

*Full Credit (FC) and No Credit (NC) options have been replaced with Pass (P) No Pass (NP). Pass/No Pass (P/NP) will continue to be offered to students who wish to opt out of a letter grade. Under the P/NP option, a P grade signifies that the student’s work is completed at a C- level or better. An NP grade is assigned when a student fails to complete the study/course in a satisfactory and sufficient manner or fails to complete (at a C- or better) a course taken on a Pass/No Pass basis. The P/NP option is selected at the time of course enrollment and cannot be converted to a letter grade once the option is selected.

*Incomplete (IN) outcomes. Incompletes are due no later than 15 weeks after the term ends, or an earlier date, if negotiated between faculty member and student. Reminder: Students may request an incomplete and an extension may be considered when at least 50 percent of the work has been completed by the end of the term.

Additionally, if the work is not completed by the deadline for the incomplete, 28 days after the deadline:

  • an F grade will automatically be assigned, unless an instructor determines and submits a different letter grade for the incomplete (IN), or
  • the student selected the Pass/No Pass (P/NP) option, in which case an NP grade will automatically be assigned.

*Administrative Withdrawal (ZW) is defined in more detail in the new policy. Of special note is the reference to the definition of substantive engagement: “Substantive engagement is defined as submitted work that demonstrates sufficient ‘mental effort, active participation and commitment’ as to be gradable.”

* Impact of grades Incomplete (IN), Administrative Withdrawal (ZW), No Pass (NP) and student-initiated Withdrawals (WD) are defined more clearly in the new policy.

Please read the new Grading and Evaluation Policy for Undergraduate Programs. Further information is available at http://www.esc.edu/gradingpolicychange.

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