Grades

  1. Passing grades are A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, D-, P, S, and CR. Failure is denoted by F, NC, and U.
  2. W, WH, or WR are recorded when a student withdraws from a course (see "Adding and Dropping Courses").
  3. P indicates satisfactory performance and is given to indicate completion (complete or partial) of fine arts participation activities that carry no course credits, e.g., MUS 701 (Music Performance Seminar).
  4. The notation I is given only for work of satisfactory quality that is incomplete because of illness or emergency (supported in the same way as requests for withdrawals for reasons of health; see "Adding and Dropping Courses," paragraph 8). Permission to receive an Incomplete in any course for any reason must be secured from the Registrar before the instructor may record it on the final grade sheet. The petition for requesting an Incomplete is available from the Registrar's Office. Students are required to indicate the length of time they and their instructor need to complete the course. The Registrar will normally approve any reasonable contract. An Incomplete which has not been removed by the end of the period specified in the contract will automatically be converted to an F if the student is still enrolled or will remain an I if the student has withdrawn from Cornell.
  5. AU indicates a course audited for no credit (see above, "Auditing Courses").
  6. IP indicates a course in progress or one for which a final grade has not been submitted by the instructor.
  7. Only courses taken for grade point credit at Cornell College, exclusive of those graded CR, S, P, I, IP, AU, NC, W, WH, and WR, are used to compute the student's cumulative grade point average. For the student's convenience, this average is printed on the unofficial transcript available online. Grade points are assigned according to the following scale:
    A =  4.0000    B =  3.0000    C =  2.0000    D =  1.0000
    A- =  3.7000    B- =  2.7000    C- =  1.7000    D- =  0.7000
    B+ =  3.3000    C+ =  2.3000    D+ =  1.3000    F =  0.0000
  8. Cornell offers a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) option to encourage students to explore new academic disciplines, but departments and interdepartmental programs are permitted to exclude specific courses from the S/U option by so stating in the course description. The S/U option is available to students who have completed a minimum of eight credits and must be declared when registering for a course or within the first three days of the course. On the 15th day of the Block (normally the third Friday), the student may rescind the declaration; if the S/U option is rescinded, the student will receive a grade for the course. No more than two full S/U credits may be counted toward satisfying the 31 credits required for graduation.

    To exercise this option, students must indicate S/U on a drop/add form, secure the signature of the academic advisor, and return the form to the Registrar’s Office.  When this option has been selected, grades of C or above become Satisfactory (S), and grades of C- or below become Unsatisfactory (U). A satisfactory performance ensures credit toward graduation but does not affect grade-point averages. An unsatisfactory performance does not confer credit, nor does it affect the grade-point average. For students who have selected the S/U option, instructors will submit grades of S or U.
  9. The cumulative grade point average is calculated by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of courses taken for grade point credit (including courses graded F). The cumulative grade point average is calculated to four decimal places and is not rounded. The student's final cumulative grade point average is determined at graduation, and will not be affected by grades subsequently earned, should the student return to Cornell.
  10. Certain courses of the type listed below are graded either as Credit (CR) if the instructor certifies that the student has done work of "C" quality or better, or as No Credit (NC) if the student fails to achieve the minimum standard. All work transferred from other institutions, all credits earned by examinations or advanced placement, all courses numbered in the 900s, and certain other courses identified in this Catalogue by the notation (CR) at the end of their description are automatically recorded as Credit/No Credit. A few courses offer the student, with the approval of the instructor, the choice of a regular grade or Credit/No Credit, and these are marked with (OP) at the end of their description.
  11. The grades earned in off-campus courses numbered in the 900s are recorded on the student's transcript as CR/NC, but are never computed into the student's Cornell grade point average.
  12. Grades are reported by the Registrar to the student and the academic advisor. At the end of each Block, the student's grade report is available on-line.
  13. Students may authorize access to their grades to their parent(s)/guardian by signing a release form and placing the form on file in the Registrar's Office. (See "Confidentiality of Student Records.")
  14. Students who believe that there is an error in the information reported on their grade report or that an injustice has been done them in the grading process should consult the Registrar immediately. After a lapse of one Block from the issuance of the report, the information becomes a permanent part of the student's official transcript. A student who disputes a final grade should appeal first to the instructor. If not satisfied, the student should consult the department chair and then, if need be, the Dean of the College. Although the department chair and the Dean may act as mediators, the decision of the instructor is final.
  15. For an instructor to change a grade, the instructor must submit a request to the Academic Standing Committee and explain the circumstances prompting the change, e.g., that he or she miscalculated or has re-evaluated the student's academic performance up through the close of the Block. After a lapse of one Block from the issuance of the grade report, the information becomes a permanent part of the student's official transcript. The Committee does not permit an instructor to change a final grade because of work submitted or revised after the instructor reported the original final grade to the Registrar.
  16. An instructor must report final grades to the Registrar by noon on the Monday following the close of the Block in which the course was taught. Although a Block technically ends at 5:00 p.m. on the 18th day of the course (normally a Wednesday), an instructor may, but is not required to, grant a student an extension of one or more days. In such cases, students are responsible for turning in their work early enough to allow the instructor to grade it and submit the grade to the Registrar by the Monday noon deadline. If the assignments are not finished and graded by this deadline, the instructor must issue a final grade based upon the work that the student has actually completed. No subsequent change of grade is permitted unless the student has been granted an Incomplete by the Registrar.
  17. Credits and grades are posted on the student's transcript at the end of each Block. Unofficial transcripts are available on-line to current students. Information regarding ordering official transcripts is available on the Registrar's Office web site.