Withdrawals, Incompletes and Pass/Fail Grades
In short, the decision to withdraw from a course or take the course Pass/Fail is entirely up to the student and the decision can be made any time up until the start of the final exam.
Please get the request in writing (email is fine) and then simply record their grade accordingly ("W" or "P" or "F") at the end of the quarter just the same as you report the regular letter grades for all students. There is no additional paperwork to complete.
The request for an Incomplete requires formal paperwork and signed Departmental approval and will involve discussions with the student, the Senior Lecturer, perhaps the student's adviser or the Dean of Students and possibly the Department Chair. See below for more details on all three alternatives to a regular letter grade.
Generally, the Department has used a policy that requests for Withdrawal must be made in writing (email is fine) prior to the start of the final exam. Every course website should make this deadline clear. The choice of a Withdrawal grade (recorded as a W on the grade report) is entirely up to the student. You might be surprised to find that on occasion even a B student may choose to withdraw. For example, we have had students withdraw in order to keep their grade point average from falling below a level required by a scholarship or grant.
The Department of Statistics strongly discourages a grade of Incomplete (I). The current College catalog states that
In addition to submitting the official Incomplete Form required by the College, the following policy applies to students who wish to receive a mark of I for a statistics course: students must have completed at least half of the total required course work with a grade of C- or better and they must be unable to complete all of the course work by the end of the quarter due to an emergency.Also see the Department policy on Incomplete grades. All I grades must be approved by the Chair of the Department and are allowed only in emergency cases. You are encouraged to talk to the Senior Lecturer first about requests for Incompletes. Many requests are denied and we only involve the Department Chair when absolutely necessary.
Incompletes are not designed to avoid failing due to insufficient work or poor planning on the part of a student (e.g., taking too many classes in one quarter). Instead, this option is used, for example, to assist a student making satisfactory progress who experiences an emergency situation late in the quarter that will prevent him/her from finishing the coursework on time. If an Incomplete is granted, in addition to recording an I on the grade report, it is necessary to have the student provide a special Incomplete form (with an advisor's signature). On this form, you should specify exactly what must be done to change the Incomplete into a letter grade and a deadline for completion (no more than one year). Record the full name, course, and UC ID of the student.
Generally, the Department has used a policy that Pass/Fall grades must be requested in writing (email is fine) prior to the start of the final exam. This is a very generous policy. The course website should make this deadline clear and should inform students that a grade of C– or better is required to obtain a Pass grade (recorded as a P on the grade report). Be sure that you have clearly communicated to the student about the following:
- What is the student's approximate current course grade now? Is a C– attainable? That is, can the student potentially earn a Pass grade?
- Has the student checked that Pass/Fail credit can be used in his/her specific degree program?
- Does the student understand that a Pass/Fail grade cannot later be changed back to a letter grade? To obtain a letter grade in the same course, the student would need to retake the course.
Last modified: June 1, 2009 3:25PM