University Standard Grading System

The University assigns students letter grades at the end of each course. Instructors should follow the standard University percentage equivalent for letter grades (see below). Instructors may use other equivalencies, but in such cases must show the scale used in the syllabus and also announce the scale they use orally early in the course.

While instructors may choose to supplement or replace the standards below with other criteria more directly relevant to their particular disciplines, the following chart provides sample grade interpretation guidelines:

Letter Grade Quality Characteristics
A Outstanding, excellent work; exceptional performance with strong evidence of original thinking, good organization, meticulous concern for documented evidence, and obvious capacity to analyze, synthesize, evaluate, discern, justify, and elaborate; frequent evidence of both verbal eloquence and perceptive insight in written expression; excellent problem-solving ability in scientific or mathematical contexts with virtually no computational errors; demonstrated masterful grasp of subject matter and its implications. Gives evidence of an extensive and detailed knowledge base. (Note: The A+ grade is reserved for very rare students of exceptional intellectual prowess and accomplishment, especially in lower level courses.)
B Good, competent work; laudable performance with evidence of some original thinking, careful organization; satisfactory critical and analytical capacity; reasonably error-free expository written expression, with clear, focused thesis and well-supported, documented, relevant arguments; good problem-solving ability, with few computational or conceptual errors in scientific subjects; reasonably good grasp of subject matter but an occasional lack of depth of discernment; evidence of reasonable familiarity with course subject matter, both concepts and key issues. Exhibits a serious, responsible engagement with the course content.
C Adequate, reasonably satisfactory work; fair performance but infrequent evidence of original thinking or the capacity to analyze, synthesize, or evaluate course material; undue reliance on rote memory; difficulty in applying knowledge in unfamiliar contexts; limited problem-solving ability in scientific subjects; fairly clear but quite uninspiring written expression with occasional problems in mechanics or syntax; weak in provision of documented, illustrative, or descriptive evidence; satisfactory grasp of basic elements of the course but frequent lapses in detailed understanding. Satisfies the minimum requirements of the course.
D Minimally acceptable work; relatively weak performance with little evidence of original thinking or ability to analyze or synthesize course material; nominal or weak problem-solving ability in scientific subjects; written expression frequently exhibits difficulty in articulating a central thesis or sustaining a coherent argument; ideas are trite or juvenile, without discernible development. Shows inadequate grasp of some basic elements of the course.
F Inadequate work; poor performance that indicates a lack of understanding or misunderstanding of essential subject matter; seems easily distracted by the irrelevant; written expression is poorly organized, often incoherent, and rife with mechanical and diction errors. Shows little evidence of even basic competency in the course content or skills.

The University-wide system of percentage equivalents is shown in the table below. Faculty members may deviate from this scale; however, if they do so, they must indicate, in their course syllabus, the percentage equivalency system they use.

Letter Grade Percentage Grade Point
A+ 90-100 4.3
A 85-89 4.0
A- 80-84 3.7
B+ 77-79 3.3
B 73-76 3.0
B- 70-72 2.7
C+ 67-69 2.3
C 63-66 2.0
C- 60-62 1.7
D+ 57-59 1.3
D 53-56 1.0
D- 50-52 0.7
F Below 50 0

Revised August 1992