Grading: Incompletes, Procedures, Unsatisfactory Progress and Withdrawals

ACCESS/Blackboard, Class Rosters and Grading

Blackboard is your online portal to the central student database at the University.  The Web site for the Registrar’s Office is your starting point:  The information to which you have access will be limited by your role regarding a particular student or record.  You will need a NetID and password to access Blackboard.  You will have access to student data for students enrolled in your courses.  Paper grade reports and paper program-slips are no longer mailed to students.  Grades are available on-line via Blackboard in real time as they are entered by the instructor or by the Registrar’s Office.  You may access an up-to-date roster at any time, and you may use this to create an automated class email list-serve. Instructions for gaining access to Blackboard, entering grades, and other similar procedures can be found on the Registrar’s page under Links for Faculty


Dropping Courses

Students may drop courses on-line through the end of the fourth week of the semester without instructor permission. If dropped during this time, the courses will not appear on the academic transcript. Graduate students may receive a partial refund based on the published tuition refund schedule. Students may not drop a course after the fourth week of classes without permission from the appropriate dean. Students who drop to fewer than 12 credits (fewer than 9 credits for some graduate TAs and DAs) will be re-classified to part-time status. International students will also be required to get approval from the International Services Office before being permitted to carry less than a full-time course load.

Adding Courses

Students may add courses on-line through the fourth week of the semester. No permission is required during week-one. Students must obtain a permission code from the instructor or departmental secretary to add a course during weeks two, three, and four. A student wishing to add a course after the first four weeks must request a late change from the Associate Dean of Academic and International Affairs or the Senior Associate Dean of Graduate Studies.

Seven-Week Courses

For courses that meet for half of the semester, the above time-line is reduced by half.


To protect the interests of students and faculty and to avoid even the appearance of coercion or impropriety, any grade-change made after the conclusion of the end-of-the-term grading period as determined by the registrar must be approved by the Associate Dean of Academic and International Affairs in the case of undergraduate students, and by the Senior Associate Dean for Graduate Studies in the case of graduate students.  Grade changes may be reported on a form available from the Registrar or by e-mail.  Please indicate the reason for the grade change.


Entering grades, via Blackboard, is the fastest way to get grades to your students and to the Registrar.  Once keyed in by you, students have instant access to their grades.  To do this, you’ll need a NetID and Password to access Blackboard.  Please contact the Registrar’s office if you have any questions.  

Web-grading policies and procedures are available online:


A grade of Incomplete (I) will be assigned when a student is unable to complete all course requirements within the prescribed period and receives the instructor’s permission to complete certain requirements at a later date. Before the end of the examination period of the semester during which the “Incomplete” is to be given, the student will negotiate with the instructor a mutually acceptable method for completing the class work, and an agreement signed by the student and the instructor outlining the agreed upon method must be submitted to the Registrar. The final grade, once recorded, will be preceded by an “I” on the official transcript. For example, a grade of “A” will appear as “IA”.  Students with outstanding incompletes on their transcript are ineligible for Dean’s List and Graduation honors.

A grade of No Grade (N) will be assigned when a student is unable to complete all course requirements due to serious illness or other similar incapacitating circumstances within the prescribed period. The “No Grade” request form, along with official documentation (medical/other), must be submitted to the Registrar’s office before the end of the examination period of the semester during which the “No Grade” is to be given. The final grade, once recorded, will eliminate the “N” on the official transcript. For example, a grade of “A” will appear as “A”. In addition to the permission of the instructor, all requests for I or N grades require permission from either the Office of Academic Affairs or the Graduate Studies Office. The deadline for completion of coursework may not extend beyond the end of the next academic session (summer session will be considered the next session only if the student is in attendance during the summer).

The “Request Incomplete or No Grade” form is included in the Academic Forms section of the Registrar’s website.


If one of your students is having significant difficulties in a class or lesson, please notify the Associate Dean of Academic and International Affairs in a timely manner.  The Registrar’s website now has a place where you can file an unsatisfactory progress report. This notifies the Academic Affairs Office that there is an issue, which then initiates institutional intervention. Very often, the best thing you can do for the student is to send notification of a problem. This gives the Academic Affairs Office the opportunity to resolve an issue before it becomes a major impediment to the student’s success. Your assistance with this process is not only appreciated, it is critical.


Course withdrawals, after the fourth week of classes, will be noted on the student’s grade report and academic transcript with a grade of W (withdrawn) or DE (withdrawn-failing) at the instructor’s discretion. Instructor permission is required to withdraw. Course withdrawals are not permitted after the 12th week of classes. Precise deadlines for dropping and withdrawing from courses are indicated on the official school calendar prepared by the registrar. Tuition refunds for graduate students will be made in accordance the stated refund schedule.

If a student wishing to drop or withdraw from a course is suspected by the professor of having violated the School’s policy on academic integrity in connection with that course, the professor has the right to refuse to permit the student to drop the course as long as the case is under investigation. If these circumstances occur, faculty should consult with the Associate Dean of Academic and International Affairs. If, as a result of the investigation, it is found that the student is not guilty of the violation, she or he may drop the course without penalty even after the deadline for such withdrawal.

Revised, September 2017

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