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Graduate Grading Systems and Policies

1.5 Graduate Grading Systems and Policies

The cumulative grade point average (CGPA) is the cumulative average of the grade points earned in the Simon Fraser University graduate courses completed towards a credential. Each letter grade is assigned a numerical equivalent, which is then multiplied by the unit value assigned to the course to produce the grade point. Grades without a numerical equivalent are not included in the calculation of the grade point average.

Term grade point average (GPA) is computed by dividing the total grade points earned by the total units completed in the term to the second decimal place.

1.5.1 Standard Grading Basis

A+ = 4.33 point

A = 4.00 points

A- = 3.67 points

B+ = 3.33 points

B = 3.00 points

B- = 2.67 points

C+ = 2.33 points  

C = 2.00 points

F = 0 points

N = 0 points

FD = 0 points

N Grades

N (incomplete) is given when a student failed to complete the course work by the end of the term

FD Grades

FD (fail, academic discipline) is given by the chair of the department when a student has committed academic dishonesty (see Policy S10.01 Appendix 3). The grade will remain on a student's transcript until two years following graduation at which time it will convert to F.

1.5.2 Competency Grading Basis

This grading system is based on satisfactory acquisition of defined skills or successful completion of the course learning outcomes. The grade shall be entered on the transcript but is not used in calculating the student's CGPA.

  • In Progress (IP)
  • Complete (CO)
  • Satisfactory (S)
  • Unsatisfactory (U)
  • Unsatisfactory, Academic Discipline (UD)

IP Grades

The designation IP (in progress) will be given when a student will be taking a course over multiple terms. An IP remains on a student's transcript even when they complete the course successfully in a later term. If a student does not complete a course graded on an in progress (IP) or complete (CO) basis, an IP still is given.

CO Grades

The designation CO (complete) will be given when a course is graded on an in progress (IP) or complete (CO) basis is completed.

S Grades

The designation S (satisfactory) will be given when a student successfully completes a course graded on a satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) basis. If a course is not graded S/U an individual student may request permission to have the grading basis on an S/U basis by applying to the supervisory committee. If that committee concurs, the request will be submitted to the graduate program committee for final approval. None of the student's minimum course work requirement under 1.7.2 may be completed S/U.

U Grades

The designation U (unsatisfactory) will be given when a student does not successfully complete a course graded on a satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) basis. If a course is not graded S/U, an individual student may request permission to have the grading basis on an S/U basis by applying to the supervisory committee. If that committee concurs, the request will be submitted to the graduate program committee for final approval. None of the student's minimum course work requirement under 1.7.2 may be completed S/U.

UD Grades

The designation UD (unsatisfactory, academic discipline) is given by the chair of the department when a student has committed academic dishonesty (see Policy S10.01 Appendix 3). The grade will remain on a student's transcript until two years following graduation at which time it will convert to U.

1.5.3 Notations

Notations are placed on a student's record to indicate a status or standing and provide additional information to the student and the University. Notations do not impact a student's grade point average.

AE

In exceptional circumstances, Aegrotat standing (AE) may be awarded in an incomplete course on medical or compassionate grounds by the registrar acting on the recommendation of the instructor or department chair. Written evidence must substantiate such a request, given that the course requirements have been substantially fulfilled. This evidence normally must be received by the registrar or department within 96 hours of a scheduled final exam or within 96 hours of the last day of term lectures for which such standing is requested.

AU

AU notation is recorded when a student has approval from the department not to complete the course for credit.

AN

AN notation is recorded when a student has audited a course but does not meet the requirements agreed upon.

DE

DE is a temporary grade. Where circumstances warrant an extension to allow a student additional time to complete the course requirements the course instructor may defer the grade, in which case, a grade of DE shall be entered. All course work for such deferrals must be completed, and the course grade must be submitted, by the last day of the first month of the next term. Students granted a DE grade are responsible for making satisfactory arrangements with their instructors for completion of outstanding course requirements. If the grade is not received by the deadline, the DE grade will be converted to an N.

In the case of illness or other extenuating circumstances, a deferral (DE) may be extended. The course instructor and the graduate chair must approve the extension. The maximum extension allowed is the end of the term following the term in which the course was taken. No further extensions will be granted. If a student is unable to complete the course work by the end of the extension period due to extenuating circumstances, a request for a course withdrawal under extenuating circumstances(WE) should be applied for. If a final grade has not been submitted or the withdrawal from the course under extenuating circumstances has not been approved by the end of the term following the term in which the course was initially taken, the DE will be converted to an N.

GN

The notation GN (grade not reported) may be used if circumstances beyond the control of the University make it impossible for grades to be assigned for a course.

WD

A course that is dropped within the fourth to ninth weeks (inclusive) will be recorded on the transcript with the notation WD.

WE

No course may be dropped after the end of the ninth week and before the end of the term, except in extenuating circumstances approved by the associate director, graduate admissions, records and registration or designate. Courses dropped under extenuating circumstances will receive a WE notation. See Academic Dates for dates that apply each term. WD and WE grades carry no credit value and are not used in GPA calculations.

1.5.4 CGPA Required For Continuation and Graduation

A student in a certificate or diploma program must maintain a CGPA of 2.5. Under no circumstances will a student with a CGPA below 2.5 be awarded a graduate diploma or graduate certificate.

A student in a master's or doctoral program must maintain a CGPA of 3.0. Under no circumstances will a student, whose CGPA is below 3.0, be awarded a graduate degree.

Failure to meet the minimum CGPA is evidence of unsatisfactory progress and the matter will be considered by the graduate program committee as required under the Procedure for the Review of Unsatisfactory Progress in 1.8.2.

1.5.5 Graduate Students Retaking a Course

A graduate student may apply to the graduate program committee to retake a course to improve a grade. At most two courses may be repeated with no course being repeated more than once.

The grades for each instance of a retaken course are recorded on the student's transcript with notation that the course was retaken to improve the grade. The better grade is used in calculating the CGPA. Units for a retaken course are counted only once toward the total units required for the degree.

1.5.6 Student's Record after Awarding Degree

When Senate awards a graduate student's credential, the student record is normally considered closed for purposes of grade changes, degree standing and all changes to transcripts and parchments. The exceptions to this would be when there is an appeal pending that had been started prior to the awarding of the credential, or an administrative error on the part of the University or when an FD was assigned.

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