Grading System

Grade point averages (scholastic averages) are computed by dividing the honor points a student has earned by the hours elected. The term grade point average and the cumulative grade point average are computed for each student at the end of each term and become part of the student's official UM-Dearborn academic record.
Symbols used in the grade reporting system common to all units are: F, failed (pass/fail option election); I, incomplete; NR, grade not reported; P, passed (pass/fail option election); S, satisfactory (courses graded S/E or S/U); NC, no credit; VI, audit; W, drop/withdrawal; X, absent from final examination; U, unsatisfactory (courses graded S/U only); Y, indicates the course extends beyond the term.

The grades of E, IE, UE or XE are not assigned honor points and thus will lower the student's grade point average. The grade NC is used only for certain courses. When this grade is officially granted, the grade NC and the course will appear on the student's transcript, but the course will not be used in computing a grade point average.
The recording of grades on a student's official academic record is governed by the following (4.0) grading system:

Letter Grade Honor Points
A,A+ 4.0
A- 3.7
B+ 3.4
B 3.0
B- 2.7
C+ 2.4
C 2.0
C- 1.7
D+ 1.4
D 1.0
D- 0.7
E 0.0


 

Note: The A+ and D- grades are not used by Engineering instructors. The A+ grade is not used by Education instructors.
 

All grades count as part of a student's grade point average, except for grades in “additive credit” courses (ex: courses numbered 001 to 099).


Grades associated with transfer credit from other schools or colleges (including other University of Michigan campuses) are neither recorded nor used in computing grade point averages of students.
Students may repeat a course no more than two times. All grades received must appear on the transcript, but only the last grade received is counted in the grade point average (GPA). Please see the Repeat Course Policy for more information.

  • Grades of D+ and D in the College of Engineering & Computer Science

Students are required to repeat any classes where they earn a D+ or D grade if those classes where the next course in the sequence requires a C-.

  • Grades of D- in the College of Engineering & Computer Science

A grade of D- is not considered passing in any CECS course. If a CECS student earns a D- in a course from another academic unit it will not count toward a CECS degree and must be repeated.

  • Audit, Pass/Fail, and Non-Credit Courses in the College of Engineering & Computer Science

College of Engineering & Computer Science students cannot take required courses within their major on an audit or pass/fail basis. Any course audited or taken pass/fail will not count towards the degree, even as a general elective. In addition, CECS students cannot use non-credit courses towards their degree.

Pass/Fail

Up to four courses taken with the pass/fail option --- excluding courses counting towards the major(s), cognates, or minor(s) --- by students will be accepted for credit towards a degree.

Grading Benchmarks

The University of Michigan-Dearborn seeks to provide greater clarification as to the characteristics for each grade level. The descriptions below provide general achievement targets for each grade level.

The grading benchmarks do not establish a campus-wide mandate for faculty grading or grading outcomes. Instructors at the University of Michigan-Dearborn have the autonomy to formulate their own grading standards and system. Students should discuss and confirm with their instructor the grading system and requirements employed within their course(s).

Benchmarks1 Grade Grade Point
Superior Achievement
Outstanding A/A+ 4.0
Excellent A- 4.0
Good Achievement
Very Good B+ 3.4
Good B 3.0
Generally Good B- 2.7
Adequate Achievement
Satisfactory C+ 2.4
Sufficient C 2.0
Marginal C- 1.7
Limited Achievement
Poor D+ 1.4
Very Poor D 1.0
Extremely Poor D- 0.7
Inadequate Achievement
Failure E 0.0

Grading Benchmark Achievement Levels

Superior Achievement (A level)
The grade of A recognizes exceptional performance and achievement that exceeds course expectations and consistently demonstrates, where applicable, many of the following characteristics:

  • Thorough, deep, and mature understanding.
  • Genuine comprehension, insight, and synthesis.
  • Significant mastery of challenging topics and issues.
  • Extensive familiarity with relevant literature and previous work.
  • Highly developed communication skills.
  • Thorough preparation and extensive, thoughtful class participation.
  • Integration of knowledge, concepts, and principles across disciplines.
  • Originality of analysis and interpretation.
  • Technical competence in skills and procedures.
  • Precision of ideas and clarity of expression.
  • Thinking that is independent, creative, and focused.
  • Understanding of nuance and subtlety.
  • Consistent coherence in argument and discussion.

Students who receive the grade of A consistently demonstrate, where applicable, the ability to:

  • Analyze arguments using specific examples and original sources.
  • Think logically, draw inferences, and make predictions in complicated situations.
  • Communicate reasoning clearly and concisely.
  • Think abstractly.
  • Identify strengths and weaknesses in arguments, policies, and practices.
  • Integrate information to draw well-founded conclusions.
  • Connect course content to issues of other courses and world affairs.
  • Use models appropriately; recognize their strengths and accommodate their inherent limitations.
  • Foresee and evaluate consequences of proposed policies and actions.
  • Use technology creatively and effectively.

Good Achievement (B level)
The grade of B recognizes work that meets course expectations and typically demonstrates, where applicable, many of the following characteristics:

  • Clear understanding without much originality.
  • Competent grasp of course materials and subject matter.
  • Familiarity with relevant literature.
  • Competence in communication skills.
  • Regular preparation for and participation in class.
  • Integration of course knowledge, concepts and procedures.
  • Some evidence of critical and creative thought.
  • Clear connections between inferences and evidence.
  • Care in the use of evidence and quotations with only occasional thinness in argument, detail, or precision.

Students who receive the grade of B typically demonstrate, where applicable, the ability to:

  • Extend ideas by connecting with personal experiences, reading, or world events.
  • Analyze data in various forms and from varied sources.
  • Utilize information to explain events, draw conclusions, and apply results.
  • Present comprehensive answers in a clear and logically correct style.
  • Understand and compare various models.
  • Distinguish inputs from outputs, and causes from effects.
  • Recognize consequences of complex interactions.
  • Use technology effectively.

Adequate Achievement (C level)

The grade of C recognizes work that is sufficient to prepare for continued study in the field and generally demonstrates, where applicable, some of the following characteristics:

  • Adequate grasp of course concepts.
  • Partial mastery of knowledge and skills required for understanding.
  • Incomplete familiarity with relevant readings or references.
  • Writing that lists facts rather than develops well-reasoned arguments.
  • Frequent neglect of important information.
  • Partial appreciation of the meaning or implications of a questions.
  • Answers that are insufficiently developed.
  • Minimally complete assignments with many areas for improvement.

Students who receive the grade of C generally demonstrate, where applicable, some ability to:

  • Assimilate and communicate simple knowledge and procedures.
  • Extend ideas by making simple inferences.
  • Make connections among and draw conclusions from course concepts.
  • Interpret simple information provided in various formats.
  • Organize and display data in tables and graphs.
  • Use technology competently.

Limited Achievement (D level)

The grade of D indicates a lack of readiness to continue in the field. Students' work usually demonstrates, where applicable, some of the following characteristics:

  • Minimal understanding of the subject matter.
  • Poorly developed communication skills.
  • Inability to apply subject matter understanding in other contexts.
  • Little evidence of critical or creative thinking.
  • Lack of apparent seriousness.
  • Frequent carelessness in fulfilling assignments.

Inadequate Achievement (E)

The grade of E indicates that coursework is insufficient to merit academic credit. Students who receive an E usually demonstrate some of the following characteristics:

  • Inadequate understanding of subject matter.
  • Inadequate or inconsistent preparation.
  • Frequent failure to complete assignments in a timely manner.
  • Little evidence of critical thought.
  • Very poor communication skills.
  • Frequent misunderstanding of facts or references.
  • Little or no analysis.
  • Confused or incomprehensible writing.

Little or no work offering evidence that course objectives have been met.

Grade Notations

The following notations may appear on a transcript to describe special situations in regard to a course.

  • NC No Credit. No honor points. Not computed in the grade point average. Used only in specially approved courses that are graded A, B, C, No Credit.
  • I Incomplete. No honor points. A student whose coursework for the term (other than final examination) is incomplete in a minor way may, upon completion and approval of the I Contract Form, be granted the privilege of completing the work within a five-week period for the College of Engineering and Computer Science or the College of Business, and a four-month period for the College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters and College of Education, Health, and Human Services beginning on the first day of classes of the immediately following term. If granted this privilege, a grade of I will be recorded. Failure to complete the required work within the specified time, or the denial of this privilege by the instructor, may result in a grade of E for the final grade. In extenuating circumstances an extension beyond the stated period may be requested by means of a petition that has been endorsed by the instructor and approved by the Academic Standards Committee. However, such arrangements for completing the work must be made within the above stipulated time period. Failure to complete the required work within the specified time may result in a grade of I being automatically treated as an IE and counted in the student's grade point average. The I will remain on the transcript even after the official final grade is assigned.
  • X Absent from Final Examination. No honor points. A student who is unavoidably absent from a final examination may be granted the privilege of making up the examination within five weeks beginning from the first day of classes of the immediately following term. If granted this privilege, a mark of X will be recorded. Failure to take the examination within the specified time, or the denial of this privilege by the instructor, will result in a mark of E for the final grade. In extenuating circumstances, an extension beyond the stated period may be requested by means of a petition that has been endorsed by the instructor. However, such arrangements for completing the work must be made within the above five-week period. The grade of X will automatically be converted to XE and reflected in the student's grade point average as a failing grade if the Supplementary Grade Report is not submitted by the end of the five-week period.
  • Y Course extended beyond term end. No credit. No honor points. A mark of Y indicates that a course extends beyond the end of one term. This mark is only used for courses that have been specially designed and approved to extend beyond the end of one term. A course with a Y mark may not be completed after graduation. If such a course is not completed, the Y will be converted to an E upon graduation.
  • NR Grade Not Reported. No honor points. Student should consult the Registrar immediately.
  • W Official Withdrawal. No credit. No honor points. Not computed in the grade point average. Students who drop a course or withdraw from all courses for a term before the deadline for official drops and/or withdrawals will receive for these courses the W notation. This notation may not be removed from the transcript.
  • S/E. Used only for specially approved courses. If a student passes, an S (satisfactory) is awarded. It is not computed into the grade point average. If a student does not pass, an E is awarded. If a student stops attending, without officially dropping, a UE is awarded. Both the E and the UE are computed in the GPA as failing grades. (Exception: Failing grades in additive credit courses that are graded S/E have no impact on the GPA.)
  • P/F Pass/Fail Option. No honor points. A student must elect to take a course under the Pass/Fail option.
  • UE Unearned Fail. This grade is assigned to any student who has never attended, or stopped attending class during the semester and did not officially drop. It is computed in the GPA the same as an E.
  • VI Visitor-Official Audit. No credit. No honor points. Not computed into the grade point average. An official audit, or visitor status, allows a student to attend a course but not elect it for credit. The VI notation appears on the transcript. Regular tuition fees are assessed.

Change of Grades

The grade that an instructor records on the final grade sheet and that appears on the student's subsequent transcript is assumed to be final; that is, the instructor's official evaluation of all of a student's performance and work completed by the official end of the term (the last day of the final examination week).
The University permits a change of grade under the following circumstances:

  • Recognizing that mistakes can be made, the University of Michigan-Dearborn permits a student to ask an instructor for a review of a grade within a five week period after the end of the term involved. After the expiration of this deadline, a student may initiate a request for a review only through the petition process involving the student’s college Academic Standards Committee (or comparable group), whose decision shall be final. Such a review is entirely separate and distinct from the circumstances involving an X (Absent from Final Examination), I (Incomplete Coursework), or a Y (Course Extends Beyond Term).
  • A student (or instructor) may initiate a grade change if he/she discovers that a grade has been entered in error due to, but not exclusive to, the following:
    • possible omission by the instructor when computing the final grade, or material submitted by the student before the end of the term;
    • possible error in evaluation by the instructor of work submitted or final examination taken by the student before the end of the term;
    • possible error by the instructor in the computation of the final grade;
    • possible error in the recording of the grade by the instructor or staff; or
    • allegation of bias or prejudice on the part of the instructor in the assignment of the final grade (This rare charge is to be handled according to the procedures established within the academic unit.).

Repeating a Course

Students may repeat a course no more than two times. All grades received must appear on the transcript, but only the last grade received is counted in the grade point average (GPA).

Guidelines:

When a prior grade or mark other than "W" is recorded for a course, or its equivalent, or its crosslisting, a subsequent enrollment ("repeat") of the course, or its equivalent, or its cross-listing, will result in an adjustment of the grade point average and credits earned.

  1. Students may repeat a course up to two times (total of three attempts).
  2. Regardless of whether it is higher or lower than the previous grade(s), the last grade assigned in a course will be used in computing the student's cumulative grade point average and credits earned toward degree.
  3. If a student takes a course three times (the maximum allowed), the previous two grades will not be reflected in the GPA.
  4. Most courses can be elected only once for credit. The maximum number of credits/elections allowed in courses designed for multiple enrollments are indicated in the Undergraduate Announcement. For information regarding these courses, students may contact their Unit Academic Advisor.

This policy applies to all undergraduate degree and non-degree students in all academic units.

The policy applies only to courses elected Fall 2005 or later. Students who have repeated a course two or more times prior to Fall 2005 may repeat the course only one additional time. Only the two most recent previous grades will be affected by the new policy. Other previous grades will continue to be used in computing the grade point average.

Courses taken at institutions other than UM-Dearborn do not affect the grade point average.

The use of an Audit Grade Mode or Pass/Fail Grade Mode may not be used to adjust grade point averages for courses previously elected under any other existing grade mode.

For students who earned an undergraduate degree at UM-Dearborn and are now in the process of earning a second undergraduate degree at UM-Dearborn, the following rule will apply: If repeating a course in the second degree that was failed (with a grade of E) in the first degree, both course will be included in the GPA calculation and the course earned hours (assuming the course was passed) will be included in the earned hours of the second degree.

The limitation of the three-course rule will be monitored by the Office of Registration & Records. Students who elect a course more than three times will be dropped from the course and notified of the election change.