California State University, Long Beach Policy Statement
August 16, 1999

This policy was revised by the Academic Senate on April 8, 1999 and approved by the President on May 3, 1999.

(This Policy Statement incorporates and supersedes Policy Statements 73-11, 77-23, 78-25, 78-36, 80-02, 80-08, 83-07, 85-16, 85-16, 95-09 Revised, 96-11, and 98-07.)

Part One - Definitions

The following definitions apply to grades assigned in all undergraduate and graduate courses.

A - Performance of the student has been at the highest level, showing sustained excellence in meeting all course requirements and exhibiting an unusual degree of intellectual initiative.

B - Performance of the student has been at a high level, showing consistent and effective achievement in meeting course requirements.

C - Performance of the student has been at an adequate level, meeting the basic requirements of the course.

D - Performance of the student has been less than adequate, meeting only the minimum course requirements.

F - Performance of the student has been such that minimal course requirements have not been met.

In addition to the standard grades, the University permits students to select evaluation on a "Credit" or "No Credit" basis. These grades are defined as follows:

CR/NC - A CR is equivalent to an A, B, or C, and NC is equivalent to a D, F, or U. Exceptions: A grade of CR reflects work at the level of B or better, and a grade of NC reflects work at the level of C, D, or F: 1) in certain professional preparation courses, providing that the students are notified of such a policy both in class materials and, as soon as practicable, in the catalog course description; and 2) for graduate students in all courses at the 300, 400, 500 and 600 levels.

There are special regulations and procedures governing the CR/NC grading system described later in this policy statement.

AU - Audit. Enrollment as an auditor is subject to permission of the instructor; provided that enrollment in a course as an auditor shall be permitted only after students otherwise eligible to enroll on a credit basis have had an opportunity to do so. Auditors are subject to the same fee structure as credit students and regular class attendance is expected. It is the responsibility of the student to request from the instructor what is meant by regular class attendance. A grade of AU is posted to the student's permanent academic record unless the student fails to attend a sufficient number of class meetings. In these cases, the instructor will request that the student be administratively withdrawn from the course. Once enrolled as an auditor, a student may not change to credit status unless such a change is requested prior to the last day to add classes. A student who is enrolled for credit may not change to audit after the third week of instruction.

SP - Satisfactory Progress. This symbol is used in connection with courses requiring multiple enrollment, i.e., that extend beyond one academic term. It indicates that work is in progress and has been evaluated and found to be satisfactory to date, but that assignment of a final grade must await completion of additional work. Reenrollment is permitted prior to assignment of a final grade provided the cumulative units attempted do not exceed the total number applicable to the student's educational objective. Work is to be completed within one year of the date of the initial enrollment except for graduate degree theses. If the SP symbol is not replaced by a terminal grade within the specified time period or prior to the student's declared graduation date, it will be changed to a W. An SP symbol cannot be replaced by an I (Incomplete) symbol; an I is not a terminal grade.

I - Incomplete. The symbol "I" indicates that a portion of required course work (normally not more than one third) has not been completed and evaluated in the prescribed time period due to unforeseen, but fully justified, reasons and that, there is still a possibility of earning credit. It is the responsibility of the student to bring pertinent information to the attention of the instructor and to determine from the instructor the remaining course requirements which must be satisfied to remove the Incomplete. A final grade is assigned when that work has been completed and evaluated.

An "I" must normally be made up within one calendar year immediately following the end of the term during which it was assigned, whether or not the student maintains continuous enrollment. Failure to complete the assigned work will result in an "I" being counted as a failing grade for grade point average computation, except as noted in item 3), below.

An extension of time may be granted for contingencies such as military service or documented, serious health or personal problems.

The conditions for removal of the incomplete shall be reduced to writing by the instructor on a "Requirements for Assigning an Incomplete Grade" form. This form shall include a statement of:

1) all work completed in the course, the grades assigned for that work,
and the percentages of the final grade accounted for by each item;

2) the work not completed and the percentage that each uncompleted
assignment will count toward the final grade; and

3) the final grade the instructor will assign if the course
requirements are not completed within one calendar year, or a shorter
period as specified on the form, immediately following the term in
which the "I" was assigned, without respect to continuous enrollment of
the student during this period.

A copy of the agreement is to be given to the student, a copy is to be retained in the department office, and a copy is to be filed with the Office of Admissions and Records at the time final grades are submitted. Normally, the student should sign the "Incomplete form." If the student is eligible for an Incomplete, a faculty member may assign an "I" even when the student cannot be present to sign the form. In such a case, the instructor will forward to the student a copy of the form via the department office. When the work agreed upon has been completed and evaluated, a final grade will be assigned by an instructor. If an incomplete is assigned without an incomplete contract attached, or with a contract which is not filled in acceptably, the symbol of RD will be assigned to the student. The "Requirements for Assigning an Incomplete Grade" form will be considered unacceptable if:

1) more than one third of the work remains to be completed, and no
justification has been provided;

2) the work required to complete the course has not been specified;

3) the faculty member failed to sign the form; or

4) the percentage fields have not been filled in.

Notice of the missing form, or a copy of the unacceptable form will be sent to the department chair with the request that the chair work with the faculty member to provide the information necessary to assign the grade of incomplete.

U - Unauthorized Withdrawal. The symbol "U" indicates that an enrolled student did not withdraw from the course but failed to complete course requirements. It is used when, in the opinion of the instructor, completed assignments or course activities or both were insufficient to make normal evaluation of academic performance possible (letter grades A-F or an Incomplete). For purposes of grade point average this symbol is equivalent to an "F." A student who receives a "U" cannot complete additional work and have the "U" changed to a letter grade. In courses which are graded Credit/No Credit or in cases where the student has elected Credit/No Credit evaluation, use of the symbol "U" is inappropriate and "NC" will be used instead. Students who receive "U"s in their first semester of enrollment at CSULB will have those "U"s automatically changed to "W"s. In such cases the student will be notified that this policy applies for that first semester at CSULB only.

W - Withdrawal. Withdrawal from classes is discussed in a separate policy statement. The symbol "W" is used to signify that a student formally withdrew from the course; no reference or implication of passing or failing progress at the time of withdrawal is made or implied. The symbol ÒWÓ is not a grade and does not alter a studentÕs grade point average.

RD - Report Delayed. This symbol is used exclusively by the Registrar to permit processing of all final grades when the grades for an entire class section have not been reported by the instructor. The symbol does not imply any academic evaluation.

If an instructor fails to report a grade for an individual student, the Registrar will assume that an "I" could not be assigned and so will enter a symbol "U," discussed above.

Part Two - Course Grading Option Policy

The faculty determine in advance which courses may be taken for traditional (A-F) grade only, CR/NC only, or either. When a course is designated for CR/NC grading only or for traditional grading only, mention of this fact should be incorporated in the catalog course description. Any undergraduate course may be designated for or closed to the option of CR/NC grading whether or not the course be a requirement for an undergraduate degree major, minor, certificate, credential or concentration.

No course in which a grade of CR has been assigned may be used to fulfill the requirements for a master's degree, except that the grade of CR may be permitted for master's theses or projects (to a maximum of six units) when the individual department has specifically designated CR/NC grading for the thesis/project course in the department, and for fieldwork, practicum, and/or internship courses (also to a maximum of six units). The option of CR/NC grading for graduate students onundergraduate courses is subject to specific regulations of the individual departments regarding their graduate students and regarding the authorization for this option intrinsic to the approved course. Otherwise, no limitation exists as to the number of courses taken by graduate students under this policy.

An undergraduate student may elect CR/NC grading in no more than a total of 24 units, of which no more than 12 may be upper division units. No more than eight units per semester may be taken for CR/NC grades. Courses graded CR/NC taken at another institution, course credit earned by examination, and courses in which CR/NC grading is the only form of grading are exempt from these limitations.

Normally, the decision to elect the CR/NC grading option for a course must be made by the final deadline for adding courses (the beginning of the fourth week of instruction.) The student must either already be enrolled in the course or register for the course at the time the CR/NC grading option is elected. In order to elect CR/NC grading, the student must obtain the signature of the major advisor, as well as a stamp from the department/program in which the course is offered, on the appropriate form, and file the signed form with the Office of Enrollment services. The decision to register for a course on a CR/NC basis remains in effect unless a change is requested prior to or on the last day to add classes.

An exception to these rules is permitted for students who declare new majors after the final day to add classes. If the newly declared major requires letter grading for the course in question, and the student has elected CR/NC grading, the student may request that traditional grading be used, provided such a change is requested no later than the last day of instruction. The grading option may not be changed retroactively after the end of the semester.

Part Three - Assignment and Change of Grades


1. The faculty member of record in a course section (i.e., the faculty
member officially assigned to teach that section) has the exclusive
responsibility and authority to assign grades to all students in that
section, subject only to the following exceptions:

(a) should the faculty member of record be unable or unwilling to
complete this task because of death, disability, separation of
employment, or prolonged absence from campus during a regular academic
term, the department chair or program director, following notification
of the faculty member of record where appropriate and with the approval
of the college dean, may appoint another faculty member with the most
appropriate available disciplinary qualifications to complete the
assignment of grades; or

(b) in the event of a successful grade appeal (see section on Change of
Grade, below.)

2. University policy requires that final grades shall be based on at least
three, and preferably four or more, demonstrations of competence by the

3. In no case shall the grade on the final examination count for more than
one-third of the course grade.

4. Instructors are expected to keep a record of students' scores on each
of the demonstrations of competence on which the final grade is based.

5. Students have a right to be informed promptly of their scores and to
review each of their demonstrations of competence with their

6. Instructors are expected to provide students with an opportunity for
demonstration of competence, relevant to the determination of their
final grade in the course, as early as is reasonable and no later than
the mid-point of the semester or summer session.

7. Instructors are further expected to make clear to their students during
the first week of instruction what grading policies and practices will
be employed in the class and what rules will apply to withdrawals.

8. If materials submitted for a demonstration of competence are not
returned these materials will be retained for one semester by the
instructor or, should the instructor be absent during that term,
retained in the department office. A qualified instructor may be
appointed by the chair, in the absence of the original instructor, to
review the demonstration of competence with the student.

Change of Grade

Grades reported to the Office of Admissions and Records are considered to be official and final grades. Changes to final grades can be made only on the authority of the instructor and only on the basis of

1) a computational or recording error, or

2) the evaluation of additional assignments or examinations ONLY when an Incomplete has been previously recorded, except

3) when the dean of the College acts on behalf of the chair of a college level grade appeal committee as the result of a grade appeal. (See the separate policy statement on Grade Appeals.)

Original grades are eradicated and new grades substituted when the change is due to a computional or recording error on the part of the instructor of record, when the grade change is the result of a grade appeal, or when the Registrar receives a late report of grades for which the symbol RD was substituted pending receipt. Original grades are not eradicated when the change of grade is the result of the resolution of an Incomplete or of the repetition of a course. Record is kept and grade or administrative symbol notation are indicated for all enrollments beyond the fourth week of instruction.

Except for changes of grades resulting from grade appeals processes, all changes of grades must be filed within one year from the date of the filing of the first grade, without respect to continuous enrollment of the student. Only as the result of a grade appeal will a grade be changed after the award of a degree or credential.

All requests for change of grade shall carry the recommendation of the instructor (except as provided for in the Grade Appeals Procedures), the department chair, and the approval of the dean of the college.

Part Four - Miscellaneous

This Policy Statement is in conformance with the provisions of Executive Orders 268 and 320, and shall be reviewed when these Orders are revised or superseded, or when other circumstances may so indicate.

EFFECTIVE: Spring 2000