Grading Policies

The College follows the Common Grade Policy for the University. The following marks are used for undergraduate courses (the number weight assigned to each grade for computation of grade point averages (GPA) is listed in parentheses when applicable): A (4.0), A- (3.7), B+ (3.3), B (3.0), B- (2.7), C+ (2.3), C (2.0), C- (1.7), D+ (1.3), D (1.0), F (0.0), I, P, NGR, and W. The marks A, B, C, D, and P are passing marks and confer course credit. The mark F indicates unsatisfactory work and does not confer credit. A grade of F may not be subsequently changed, except when entered in error by the instructor or the registrar.

College Grading Overview

    The grades A through F are known as quality grades and carry a specific weight in calculating official grade point averages (GPA). These averages are regularly calculated to determine Dean's List, academic probation, and general honors. They may influence awards like Phi Beta Kappa and departmental honors. Note that College students who take a course at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business may receive an A+ grade according to the Chicago Booth grade system, but will receive 4.0 grade points in the College grade system for that Chicago Booth course. For College students, other Chicago Booth grades convert to grade points according to the College scale above. 

    NOTE: Only grades for University of Chicago courses are calculated into a student's GPA. Grades from advanced standing (transfer courses) do not contribute to the GPA. Grades from off-campus study abroad or domestic programs do not contribute to the GPA unless the courses are listed on the transcript with University of Chicago course numbers.

    Students who wish to receive a passing grade rather than a quality grade have one option open to them: Pass/Fail (P/F). Students considering P/F grading should consult with their College adviser early in the quarter because this option is subject to conditions and restrictions. Whether a course with a grade of P can be counted toward a student's degree depends on how it is to be used in the student's program. All general education courses must be taken for quality grades and most courses satisfying requirements in the major must be taken for quality grades. However, some majors permit a limited number of P marks. For P/F grading, the student and instructor reach an informal agreement, at the discretion of the instructor and according to departmental policy, before the instructor submits a grade for the course; no action is required by the student's adviser.

    The P grade indicates that the student has submitted sufficient evidence to receive a passing grade. As some departments give credit only for a grade of C- or higher, students should establish with the instructor what constitutes passing work. A mark of P may not later be changed to a quality grade, and a quality grade may not be changed to a P. Although the P confers course credit, it is not calculated in the GPA. Students who do not pass a P/F course receive an F which counts as a zero in the calculation of the GPA.

      The “W” (Withdrawn) grade means that the student has decided after week 3 of the quarter not to complete the work of the course. Students who wish to exercise this option must request a W from their adviser in writing by 5 p.m. the Monday of the ninth week of instruction or the day before the final project/exam is due, whichever is earlier. When made before the deadline, a request for a withdrawal cannot be denied except in cases of academic dishonesty. A withdrawal may not be granted after completion of the course.

      Once a student requests a W, it may not subsequently be changed to any other mark. W grades do not confer credit or impact GPA; however, they will count against the completion rate needed to maintain good academic standing.

      Students who register for graduate-level courses are subject to the policies governing graduate grading. Students should discuss the implications of these policies with their advisers before registering for courses numbered 30000 and above. NOTE: Grades earned in graduate-level courses contribute to a student's GPA as indicated earlier in this section.

      The mark “I” (Incomplete) is intended for a student who has not completed the requirements of a course before the end of the quarter but who has

      1. participated actively in the course,
      2. completed the majority of the requirements of the course with work that is of a passing quality, and
      3. made satisfactory arrangements with the instructor to complete the remaining work.

      The student must submit the request for an Incomplete to the instructor before the end of the course. Approval to complete work late is at the discretion of the instructor and/or according to departmental policy.

      The student is also responsible for completing and submitting an official Incomplete Form, which must be obtained from the student’s College adviser and turned into the registrar’s office by Friday of the first week of the following quarter. After this point, students who are otherwise qualified for an "I" may petition the Dean of Students in the College for approval to arrange the Incomplete. If the required form has not been submitted by the deadline, a grade of "NGR" will be entered for the course.

      Incompletes must be finished within a period of time agreed upon between student and instructor. In the absence of a specified due date, the work must be completed within one year. In the interim, an "I" will appear in place of a grade. 

      If the coursework has not been completed within the specified time period and an extension has not been granted, the “I” will remain as a permanent mark on the student’s transcript unless the instructor indicates a specific grade on the Incomplete Form.

        The mark “NGR” (No Grade) is entered on the student’s grade report by the registrar’s office when the instructor has failed to submit a final grade for a student. The NGR may be resolved by submission of a final grade or a formal Incomplete Form. If neither has been submitted by Friday of the first week of the following quarter, students who are otherwise qualified for an Incomplete may petition the Dean of Students in the College for approval to complete the course.

        The NGR should not be interpreted as an informal Incomplete. Rather, students are strongly urged to protect themselves against misunderstandings and missed deadlines by arranging for an official Incomplete by Friday of the first week of the following quarter if one proves necessary.

      More information about University grading policies can be found on the Registrar’s website.