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240 Grading and Credit

240.01 Grading System

SUNY College at Brockport uses a grading system typical of many colleges and universities, awarding a letter grade of A through E to indicate the level of accomplishment in each course for which a student is registered. East letter grade carries quality points, which are the basis for computing a semester and cumulative index, also referred to as a grade point average (GPA). The letter grades and their associated quality points are as follows:

Grade Level of Accomplishment Quality Points
A Highest level of work 4.00
A- 3.67
B+ 3.33
B Better than average work 3.00
B- 2.67
C+ 2.33
C Average work 2.00
C- 1.67
D+ 1.33
D Minimum level of passing work 1.00
D- Failing work 0.67
E 0.00
(In academic programs or policies, which require a C or better level of work as a minimum, a grade of C- is not acceptable unless specifically indicated.)

Quality points are based upon each credit of work. Thus, a three-credit course graded A earns a student 12 quality points.

The letter grades described above contribute to a student's cumulative index and are, therefore, known as indexable grades. An alternative grading system allows courses to be taken on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) basis. Such courses are not computed in the cumulative index, and are known as non-indexable grades. Students may ordinarily only choose the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grading system for electives, may only take such courses during their junior and senior years, and may take no more than one per semester.

A complete explanation of the policy and procedures concerning grades appears in the Brockport Handbook, including procedures for dropping or withdrawing from a course, for obtaining a grade of incomplete, and for appealing a given grade.

240.02 Index

  1. The semester index is a measure of academic performance determined by dividing the total number of quality credits earned for a semester by the total number of semester credits registered, as indicated in the following example.
    • Course Credits Grade Quality Points
      THE 205 3 B 9
      ENL 171 3 C 6
      SOC 100 3 E 0
      BIO 111 3 D 3
      CHM 205 4 A 16
      16 34
    • Semester Index - Quality Credits for Semester (34) - credits (16) = 2.12 semester index.
  2. The cumulative index is a measure of academic performance determined by dividing the total number of quality credits earned to date by the total number of semester credits registered to date.

All grades earned at Brockport (including D's and E's) are used in computing the cumulative academic index.

Although semester credits earned at other institutions may be transferable, grades are not. Grade point averages are representative only of the level of achievement attained by the student in course work completed at Brockport.

240.03 Mid-Term Progress Grade Report

  1. All instructors shall provide an evaluation of each student's progress toward completion of the course material and an evaluation of the quality of the student's work in the form of a letter grade prior to the midterm point in the semester. A copy of this grade will be provided to the student and to the Office of Academic Advisement via the Office of Registration and Records.
  2. This evaluation will be used for advisement purposes and will not be recorded on the student's transcript.

240.04 Final Grade Policy

  1. Each faculty member is personally responsible for determining the final grades for students registered in his/her courses.
  2. Final grades must be sent to the Office of Registration and Records no later than 48 hours after the final examination.
  3. The grades "S" (satisfactory work) and "U" (unsatisfactory work) are given for student teaching and courses elected on a S/U basis. These grades are not considered when computing grade point averages, nor are "I" and "W" grades.

240.05 Incompletes

  1. An "I" (incomplete) shall be assigned as a grade for a course at the discretion of the instructor on the basis of convincing evidence that the student was unable to complete all of the required work for the course because of circumstances beyond the student's control.
  2. In such cases, the instructor and the student shall execute and sign an "I" contract. The contract shall state the work to be completed by the student, the date by which it must be completed, and the alternate grade to be assigned if the work is not completed as stated. The contract shall not extend, however, beyond the succeeding semester. Contracts not complete at that time shall automatically receive the alternate grade specified by the instructor. The contract shall be processed administratively in accordance with the instructions printed thereon.
  3. When the student completes the work as stated on the contract, the instructor shall report the grade earned in the manner prescribed on the "I" contract form.
  4. If the Office of Registration and Records does not receive from the instructor within 30 days after the date assigned for the completion of the work either a grade report or a notice of a new date, the Office of Registration and Records shall record the alternative grade and notify the instructor of that action.
  5. A student who receives an "I" grade shall not register for that course while the "I" is in effect.

240.06 Change of Grade

  1. Changing any reported grade is the responsibility of the instructor concerned, but may be made only because of the instructor's error.
  2. To change a grade, the instructor must complete an official form indicating the desired change and the reason for it.
  3. The Change of Grade form is channeled from the instructor of the course to the department chairperson, then to the dean, and then to the Office of Registration and Records.
  4. Change of Grade forms are available in the Office of Registration and Records.

240.07 Student Grade Appeals

Grades reflect, in concise form, the instructor's expert evaluation of student achievement which has been demonstrated in a timely manner. To avoid misunderstanding and to assist students to discharge their responsibilities in the most effective manner, instructors are expected to provide clear statements of the objectives and standards of the course and of their evaluation and grading procedures. This information is to be given at the beginning of the course, and the student is to be informed as to how well he/she is meeting these objectives during the course. The instructor is expected to be available to discuss the application of these standards and procedures with the student.

The instructor is the best-qualified person to assess student performance and has the professional right and responsibility to do so. Therefore, questions and issues about a grade are normally settled by discussion between the student and the instructor. In cases in which the student, after conferring with the instructor, has firm reason to believe that there (1) is a clear discrepancy between the stated standards of a course and the application of those standards, or (2) that these standards have been applied in an arbitrary or capricious manner, the student may initiate the formal grade appeal process. However, no member of the College's academic or professional staff may require an instructor to change a grade, which that instructor has assigned.

Procedure for Appealing Assigned Grades

Preliminary Step: The student shall discuss the matter informally with the instructor who assigned the grade in question. If the instructor is off-campus or otherwise not available, the student must confer with the chairperson of the department who will attempt to contact the instructor; or, failing that, to ascertain the facts of the case.

Process

  1. Step (1)
    Within the time period starting with the awarding of the grade and ending with the mid-semester of the next regular semester, the student, after having conferred with the instructor and not receiving satisfaction, shall initiate the grade appeal process by preparing a written statement which shall meet the following criteria:
    1. It sets forth the student's case in detail.
    2. It indicates the date on which the student conferred with the instructor.
    3. It sets forth the reasons why the student believes the grade originally assigned should be reconsidered.
    4. All relevant supporting materials, documents, evidence, etc. must be identified and listed in an index.
    • The student shall submit complete copies of the written statement and all attachments to the chairperson of the department, which offered the course in question, and to the instructor.
    • In an effort to resolve the matter, the chairperson shall carefully review the student's written statement and confer with the student and instructor, individually and/or together. The chairperson may also review the student's work in the course in question and employ other means for reviewing and investigating the matter.
  2. Step (2)
    1. If the matter is not resolved to the student's satisfaction in Step (1), the student may write the Vice President for Academic Affairs and request a hearing, forwarding the documentation as outlined above. The Vice President for Academic Affairs shall assign a dean to convene a hearing by a panel of three faculty members. These three faculty members must be acceptable to the student, the instructor, and the dean. If an acceptable panel cannot be agreed upon, then the dean and the President of the Faculty Senate, or his/her designee, shall prepare a list of seven faculty members; and the student and the instructor shall alternately strike names until three names are left.
      1. The panel shall meet and solicit a response from the instructor to each and every count of the student's case against his/her grading decision. The panel will familiarize themselves with the standards and objectives of the course and the evaluative material presented. Their concern shall be limited to a consideration of the fairness of the application of the standards and objectives and whether the standards and objectives were reasonably known to the student. The difficulty of the standards shall not be an issue. The burden of proof shall be on the student, who may be asked to appear before the panel.
      2. If, in the opinion of a majority of the panel members, no case can be made, the original grade will remain. If they find that the standards and objectives were not reasonably known to the student or were unfairly applied, they may recommend a different grade and give their reasons for so recommending. The panel shall report their findings in writing to the student, the instructor, the dean, and the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
      3. If the panel recommends a different grade, the instructor shall have 10 working days from the receipt of the panel's report to change the grade or appeal the decision to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. A change of grade shall not be interpreted as an admission of unfairness in grading.Either the student or the instructor may appeal to the Vice President for Academic Affairs when:
        1. There is substantial new evidence.
        2. There is clear evidence of substantial irregularity on the part of the panel.
        • If the Vice President for Academic Affairs supports the appeal, he/she will convene a new panel whose decisions will be final.
      4. If the panel recommends a change in grade and the instructor does not appeal, or upon appeal, is denied, the student's transcript shall be amended to include a statement that upon appeal an Academic Panel recommended a grade of (insert grade) and the originals grade shall be removed.

240.08 Repeating Courses

  1. Students repeating courses must file a Repeat of Course form in the Office of Registration and Records at the time of the second enrollment.
  2. Courses taken for a letter grade may only be repeated for a letter grade. Courses taken as pass/fail may be repeated as pass/fail or for a letter grade.
  3. The grade received the last time the course is repeated shall be used in the computation of the cumulative grade point average and in the computation of the index in the major should it be affected. In all cases, both the new grade and the previously earned grade shall show on the transcript.
  4. Only the grade received in the repeat of course shall be counted for credit toward graduation and the grade point average, i.e., if a student received a "C" in a course and later repeated the course, receiving an "E" grade, the student would receive neither credit toward graduation nor quality points toward his/her index, thereby losing both the credits toward graduation and the quality points toward the index. Neither withdrawals nor incompletes may be substituted for a previously awarded grade when a course is repeated.
  5. Courses taken at Brockport may be repeated only at Brockport. Courses taken elsewhere will be treated as transfer credit.
  6. In cases where a course number or course title has changed, without substantial change in course material, the department involved shall certify that the course is the same. The student shall receive credit under the new course number and title.
  7. Students are also permitted to repeat courses in which they earned a "U." If passed later, credit toward graduation is received.
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