Grading

When assessments are graded, the instructor must be consistent with University grading standards.  Note that students occasionally believe that merely satisfactory work deserves an A, and so instructors should consider discussing the University’s official grading definitions on a syllabus or in the classroom.  Instructors should seek to ensure that students have a clear understanding of what grades mean and how they are awarded. At the same time UMEG offers several grades which do not appear on the official University grading standards.  We have reproduced those choices and their definitions here.


A+ A A- Excellent mastery of subject
B+ B B- Good mastery of subject
C+ C C- Acceptable mastery of subject
D+ D D- Borderline understanding of subject
F Failure
I Incomplete (Final Grades Only)
J Judicial—student has been referred for a judicial review.  No grade is posted and the “judicial review” is placed in the system.  After the review is complete, the Honor Council panel will either submit the grade or ask the instructor to submit the grade earned (Final Grades Only).  Faculty are never allowed to enter the XF grade themselves.
S Satisfactory
U Unsatisfactory (Early Warning Grades Only)
Z Never Attended—the grade posts as an “F” and a note indicating that the student never attended the course is placed in the system.
XF Failure for academic dishonesty

Plus/Minus Grading Policy

Since Fall 2012, plus/minus grading is the University’s official grading policy.  Under the policy, quality points for each letter grade from A through D will reflect plus and minus components of the grade, as shown below.  The plus/minus system will apply to both undergraduate and graduate courses.

 

Grade Current Plus/Minus Grade Policy Old Grade Policy

A+

4.0

4.0

A

4.0

4.0

A-

3.7

4.0

B+

3.3

3.0

B

3.0

3.0

B-

2.7

3.0

C+

2.3

2.0

C

2.0

2.0

C-

1.7

2.0

D+

1.3

1.0

D

1.0

1.0

D-

0.7

1.0

F

0

0

 

For more information, please see: www.testudo.umd.edu/plusminusimplementation.html.

Other Campus Grading Policies and Guidelines

 The following issues are also discussed in the Undergraduate Catalog www.umd.edu/catalog/index.cfm/show/content.division/c/27/ss/1584:

  • Grading and class attendance requirements
  • Absences on test and exam days and on days when assignments are due
  • The Pass/Fail, Audit, and Incomplete options
  • Regulations about the administration of mid-term and final examinations

The following issues are also discussed in the Office of Faculty Affairs website:

  • Incompletes
  • Retaining final exams
  • Arbitrary and Capricious Grading
  • Formal grade complaints
  • Early Warning Grades

Arbitrary and Capricious Grading

The University’s policies on this subject offer definitions and procedures regarding allegations of arbitrary and capricious grading (graduate: www.president.umd.edu/policies/iii120a.html and undergraduate: www.president.umd.edu/policies/iii120b.html).  These are the standards that students must meet in order to justify a request for their grade to be overturned.  It is worth taking a moment to read these policies so that you know what the standards are and so that if a student would like to request a formal grade change after semester grades have been reported, you can point them in the right direction. 

Early Warning Grades

Early warning grades are to be submitted for those undergraduate students who are newly enrolled at Maryland.  The UMEG system will prompt you if students in your course should receive early warning grades.  These grades are an important component of our retention efforts as they provide timely feedback to those students who are unfamiliar with our academic expectations.  Faculty may submit a letter grade or “satisfactory/unsatisfactory” (S/U) marks.  You are encouraged to adjust your course syllabus so that some graded work is available for your review by the time Early Warning Grades are due.  See Part V: Grades and Exams or http://www.faculty.umd.edu/teach/dates.html for a current list of deadlines for Early Warning Grades.