There are two types of grading policies; each is dependent on whether or not a student matriculated before or after fall 2004.

To view a grading policy, please choose the appropriate division and matriculation time frame below.

Grading Policy for the College of Arts and Sciences Students Matriculated Before Fall 2004

Two grading options are offered: letter grades or credit/no entry (CR/NE). Each semester undergraduate students may choose to have some or all of their courses evaluated credit/no entry. To exercise this option, students must file a card, signed by the advisor, in the Office of the Registrar by the end of the eighth week of semester classes or the end of the fourth week of module classes. (NOTE: this deadline is later than in previous years; it is now coordinated with the deadline for P/NP in the new grading system. See the back cover of the catalog for the entire academic calendar.) Once the deadline has passed, no change in the grading option may be made. This means that students must elect the CR/NE grading option by the deadline. Similarly, CR/NE grading will not be reversed to letter grading after the deadline. If no option card is submitted, letter grades will be recorded. In courses in which the instructor declares credit/no entry grading, the student has no option.

The grades recorded and their equivalents in quality points (used in computing grade-point averages) are as follows:

A+ A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- W NE (No Entry)
4.33 4.00 3.67 3.33 3.00 2.67 2.33 2.00 1.67 0.00 0.00

To obtain the quality points earned in a course, the numerical equivalent of the grade is multiplied by the number of hours for which the course was taken. The grade-point average is computed by dividing the total quality points by the total number of hours for which letter grades are recorded.

Credit/No Entry (CR/NE)

All passing work (A+ to C-) is given the uniform grade of CR (Credit). Work below C- is considered not passing, and is given a grade of NE (No Entry).

Withdrawal Grades

A student may withdraw from a class between the end of the Add/Drop period and the last day of the eighth week of classes (last day of the fourth week of classes for modules). If a student withdraws from a class, the notation W (Withdrawn; no indication of passing or failing) will be entered on the student’s transcript. After the end of the eighth week of classes (fourth week for a module course), a letter grade or CR/NE will be awarded. The number of registered hours is not reduced by withdrawing from a course. Thus, students must remain with the maximum hours allowed (16 for the Bachelor of Arts, 17 for the Bachelor of Music and Double Degree Programs) if there is consideration of withdrawing from one course and adding another during the semester.

No Entry

Whether a course is taken for letter grades or credit/no entry, work below the C– level is considered not passing and no entry is made on the student’s permanent record. Thus, if a student does not pass a course, there is no indication on the official transcript that the course was attempted.

Policies regarding Incompletes, Asterisk Grades, and Grade Reports

The following grading policies apply to all students regardless of matriculation term

Incomplete Grades

An incomplete grade is a temporary grade, assigned at the end of a semester, to permit students additional time to complete work in a course. There are two kinds of incompletes:

While at Oberlin a student in the College of Arts and Sciences is allowed up to two incompletes authorized by course instructors for educational reasons, such as a desire by the student to spend additional time on a particular course. A request for such an educational incomplete must be submitted to the Office of the Dean of Studies in advance of the scheduled final exam in that course. Course work must be finished by the end of the first week of Winter Term for first semester incompletes, and by three weeks after the end of the semester for second semester incompletes. Additional educational incompletes beyond the first two may be authorized by the Dean of Studies, but only in very exceptional circumstances.

Emergency incompletes may be authorized by the Dean of Studies due to circumstances beyond the student’s control. Normally such incompletes are for medical or life crisis reasons. The due date for course work will depend on how much time was lost due to the emergency, up to a maximum of three weeks.

The due date for either an educational or emergency incomplete may be extended only for emergency reasons. If work is not completed within the specified time, a grade will be recorded based on the extent to which the course requirements have been met. All requests for incompletes must be made through the Office of the Dean of Studies for courses offered in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Asterisk Grade

An asterisk grade is used at the end of the first semester to indicate that the work of a course covers two semesters and that no grade can be recorded yet. When the final grade is given at the end of the second semester the asterisk is removed and the grade earned is recorded for both semesters.

Grade Reports

Semester grade reports are available to students via the online student record system. Federal law prohibits student grade reports from being sent to parents unless the student signs a form releasing this information. If a student opts to release grades to his or her parents, either the student or the parents must request a copy of the grades each semester from the Office of the Registrar.

Grading Policy for College of Arts and Sciences Students Matriculated After Fall 2004

Two grading options are offered: letter grades or pass/no pass (P/NP). Each semester undergraduate students may choose to have some or all of their courses evaluated P/NP. To exercise this option, students must file a form, signed by the advisor, in the Office of the Registrar, by the last day of the eighth week of classes or the last day of the fourth week of classes for a module course. Once P/NP is declared, it cannot be reversed to another grading option. If no option card is submitted, letter grades will be recorded. In addition to a student opting to take a course P/NP, an instructor may declare an entire course graded on the P/NP basis. In this case, the course will be listed as such in the catalog and the student has no option as to which grade option will be used.

Letter Grades

The grades recorded and their equivalents in quality points (used in computing grade-point averages) are as follows:

A+ A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D F W
4.33 4.00 3.67 3.33 3.00 2.67 2.33 2.00 1.67 1.00 0.0 0.0

To obtain the quality points earned in a course, the numerical equivalent of the grade is multiplied by the number of hours for which the course was taken. The grade-point average is computed by dividing the total quality points by the total number of hours for which letter grades are recorded.

Pass/No Pass

All passing work (A+ to C-) is given the uniform grade of Pass (P). Work below C- is considered not passing and is given a grade of No Pass (NP). The grades of P and NP do not enter into the GPA calculation. Departments will have the option of deciding how to handle P/NP grades with respect to credit in the major. Please consult the major requirements in this catalog for specific information regarding P/NP grades.

Repeating Courses with a D or F grade

A student may repeat once a course for which a grade of D or F is received. Both grades and both courses count in calculation of the GPA. Only one of the courses counts as credit toward graduation.

Withdrawal Grades

A student may withdraw from a class between the end of the Add/Drop period and the last day of the eighth week of classes (last day of the fourth week of classes for modules). If a student withdraws from a class, the notation W (Withdrawn; no indication of passing or failing) will be entered on the student’s transcript. After the end of the eighth week of classes (fourth week for a module course), a letter grade or P/NP will be awarded. The number of registered hours is not reduced by withdrawing from a course. Thus, students must remain with the maximum hours allowed (16 for the Bachelor of Arts and 17 for the Bachelor of Music and Double Degree Programs) if there is consideration of withdrawing from one course and adding another during the semester.

Minimum GPA Required for Graduation

In order to graduate, a student must have a GPA of at least 1.67. The P/NP grades do not enter into the GPA calculation.

Written Evaluation

Upon request, a student may receive a written evaluation of his or her work taken under the P/NP option. Students desiring such an evaluation should obtain the necessary forms from the Office of the Registrar and give them to the course instructor at the end of the semester or course. At the student’s request, such written evaluations may be sent, along with transcripts, to a graduate or professional school and/or a prospective employer.

Policies Regarding Incompletes, Asterisk Grade, and Grade Reports

The following grading policies apply to all students regardless of matriculation term.

Incomplete Grades

An incomplete grade is a temporary grade, assigned at the end of a semester, to permit students additional time to complete work in a course. There are two kinds of incompletes:

While at Oberlin a student in the College of Arts and Sciences is allowed up to two incompletes authorized by course instructors for educational reasons, such as a desire by the student to spend additional time on a particular course. A request for such an educational incomplete must be submitted to the Academic Advising Resource Center in advance of the scheduled final exam in that course. Course work must be finished by the end of the first week of Winter Term for first semester incompletes, and by three weeks after the end of the semester for second semester incompletes. Additional educational incompletes beyond the first two may be authorized by the Academic Advising Resource Center, but only in very exceptional circumstances.

Emergency incompletes may be authorized by the Academic Advising Resource Center due to circumstances beyond the student’s control. Normally such incompletes are for medical or life crisis reasons. The due date for course work will depend on how much time was lost due to the emergency, up to a maximum of three weeks.

The due date for either an educational or emergency incomplete may be extended only for emergency reasons. If work is not completed within the specified time, a grade will be recorded based on the extent to which the course requirements have been met. All requests for incompletes must be made through the Academic Advising Resource Center for courses offered in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Asterisk Grade

An asterisk grade is used at the end of the first semester to indicate that the work of a course covers two semesters and that no grade can be recorded yet. When the final grade is given at the end of the second semester the asterisk is removed and the grade earned is recorded for both semesters.

Grade Reports

Semester grade reports are available to students via the online student record system. Federal law prohibits student grade reports from being sent to parents unless the student signs a form releasing this information. If a student opts to release grades to his or her parents, either the student or the parents must request a copy of the grades each semester from the Office of the Registrar.

Grading Policy for the Conservatory of Music Students Matriculated Before Fall 2004

Two grading options are offered: letter grades or credit/no entry. Subject to limitations stated below, a student may choose which grading option he or she wishes to have apply for one or more courses.

Letter Grades

The grades recorded and their equivalents in quality points (used in computing grade-point averages) are listed here:

A+ A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- W NE (No Entry)
4.33 4.00 3.67 3.33 3.00 2.67 2.33 2.00 1.67 0.00 0.00
Quality Points

To obtain the quality points earned in a course, multiply the numerical equivalent of the grade by the number of hours for which the course was taken.

Grade Point Average

This is computed by dividing the total quality points by the total number of hours for which letter grades are recorded.

Credit/No Entry (CR/NE)

To exercise the credit/no entry option, students must file a card, signed by the principal adviser, in the Office of the Registrar, by the last day of the eighth week of classes for semester-long courses, or by the last day of the fourth week of classes for a module course. Once the deadline has passed no change in the grading option may be made.

All passing work (work otherwise graded A+ to C–) is given the uniform grade CR (Credit). Work below C– is considered not passing, and is given a grade of NE (No Entry). A student electing a course for Credit/No Entry may not later request a grade equivalent.

Limitations on Grading Options
  1. Conservatory majors must register for the following courses for letter grade only: Introduction to Music Theory, Music Theory I-IV, Introduction to Aural Skills, Aural Skills I-IV, Introduction to the History and Literature of Music, and any class taken to satisfy a requirement in secondary applied study.
  2. Students required to take Aural Skills V must register for letter grade only
  3. All faculty-taught private applied study (including composition) is offered for letter grades only
  4. Voice lessons with supervised student teachers are offered for credit/no entry grading only. All other secondary private study with supervised student teachers may be taken for letter grades or credit/no entry
  5. Small ensembles are offered for Pass/No Pass only at the discretion of the individual coach
  6. Oberlin Orchestra, Oberlin Chamber Orchestra, Oberlin Wind Ensemble, and Contemporary Music Ensemble are offered for letter grades only
No Entry

Whether a course is taken for a letter grade or credit/no entry, work below a C– level is considered not passing, and no entry is made on the student’s permanent record. Thus, if a student does not pass a course, there is no indication on the official transcript that the course had been attempted.

Incomplete Grades

Students may request an incomplete grade when illness, personal emergency, or family emergency prevents the satisfactory completion of coursework. Unless otherwise specified, the outstanding work must be completed within three weeks of the end of the semester. Regardless of the division in which a student is enrolled, incompletes in Conservatory courses are granted by the relevant faculty member and approved by the associate dean for student academic affairs.

A conservatory student may be authorized for no more than two incompletes for educational reasons in arts and sciences courses.

No incomplete grades will be given in private study or ensemble participation.

Asterisk Grades

An asterisk grade given at the end of the first semester indicates that coursework continues over two semesters; no grade can be recorded until the course is completed. The asterisk is removed when the final grade is given at the end of the second semester, and the earned grade is recorded for both semesters.

Grade Reports

Semester grade reports are available to students via the online student record system (PRESTO). Students who require paper copies of grade reports may arrange with the Office of the Registrar to obtain them. Federal law prohibits student grade reports from being sent to parents unless the student signs a form releasing this information. If a student opts to release grades to his or her parents, either the student or the parents must request a copy of the grades each semester from the Office of the Registrar.

Committee Exams

A copy of the faculty evaluations of a student’s departmental hearing and committee exam each semester is made available to him or her within a few days of the committee performance.

Auditing

Students may audit courses with a lecture or modified lecture format, with the consent of the instructor. Auditing is not permitted in courses that emphasize student participation and skill development (e.g., private applied or composition instruction, ensembles, aural skills courses).

Grading Policy for the Conservatory of Music Students Matriculated After Fall 2004

Two grading options are offered: letter grades or pass/no pass. Individual choice of grading options is subject to the limitations listed below.

Letter Grades

The grades recorded and their equivalents in quality points (used in computing grade-point averages) are listed here:

A+ A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D F W
4.33 4.00 3.67 3.33 3.00 2.67 2.33 2.00 1.67 1.00 0.0 0.0
Quality Points

To obtain the quality points earned in a course, multiply the numerical equivalent of the grade by the number of hours for which the course was taken.

Grade Point Average

This is computed by dividing the total quality points by the total number of hours for which letter grades are recorded.

Pass/No Pass

To exercise the Pass/No Pass option, students must file a card, signed by the principal adviser, in the Office of the Registrar, by the last day of the eighth week of classes for semester-long courses, or by the last day of the fourth week of classes for a module course. Once the deadline has passed no change in the grading option may be made. Similarly, once P/NP is declared, it cannot be reversed to another grading option.

All passing work (work otherwise graded A+ to C–) is given the uniform grade P (Pass). Work below C– is considered not passing and is given a grade of NP (No Pass). Individual departments determine if a course taken P/NP will satisfy the requirements of the major. A student electing a course for Pass/No Pass may not later request a grade equivalent.

Limitations on Grading Options
  1. Conservatory majors must register for the following courses for letter grade only: Introduction to Music Theory, Music Theory I-IV, Introduction to Aural Skills, Aural Skills I-IV, Introduction to the History and Literature of Music, and any class taken to satisfy a requirement in secondary applied study
  2. Students required to take Aural Skills V must register for letter grade only
  3. All faculty-taught private applied study (including composition) is offered for letter grades only
  4. Voice lessons with supervised student teachers are offered for pass/no pass grading only. All other secondary private study with supervised student teachers may be taken for letter grades or pass/no pass
  5. Small ensembles are offered for pass/no pass only at the discretion of the individual coach
  6. Oberlin Orchestra, Oberlin Chamber Orchestra, Oberlin Wind Ensemble, and Contemporary Music Ensemble are offered for letter grades only
Written Evaluation

Upon request, a student may receive a written evaluation of his or her work taken under the P/NP option. Request forms are available from the Office of the Registrar.

Repeating Courses with a D or F

A student may repeat once a course in which he or she has earned a grade of D or F. Both grades and both courses will be calculated in the GPA; only one of the courses will count toward graduation requirements.

Withdrawal Grades

A student may withdraw from a class between the end of the Add/Drop period and the last day of the eighth week of classes (last day of the fourth week of classes for modules); the notation “W” (Withdrawn; no indication of passing or failing) will be entered on the student’s transcript. After the end of the eighth week of classes (fourth week for module course), a letter grade or P/NP will be awarded if a withdrawal has not been processed.

Minimum GPA Required for Graduation

In order to graduate, a student must have a minimum GPA of 1.67. The P/NP grades are not calculated into the GPA.

Incomplete Grades

Students may request an incomplete grade when illness, personal emergency, or family emergency prevents the satisfactory completion of coursework. Unless otherwise specified, the outstanding work must be completed within three weeks of the end of the semester.

Regardless of the division in which a student is enrolled, incompletes in conservatory courses are granted by the relevant faculty member and approved by the associate dean for advising and retention.
A conservatory student may be authorized for no more than two incompletes for educational reasons in arts and sciences courses.

No incomplete grades will be given in private study or ensemble participation.

Asterisk Grades

An asterisk grade given at the end of the first semester indicates that coursework continues over two semesters; no grade can be recorded until the course is completed. The asterisk is removed when the final grade is given at the end of the second semester, and the earned grade is recorded for both semesters.

Grade Reports

Semester grade reports are available to students via the online student record system (PRESTO). Students who require paper copies of grade reports may arrange with the Office of the Registrar to obtain them. Federal law prohibits student grade reports from being sent to parents unless the student signs a form releasing this information. If a student opts to release grades to his or her parents, either the student or the parents must request a copy of the grades each semester from the Office of the Registrar.

Committee Exams

A copy of the faculty evaluations of a student’s departmental hearing and committee exam each semester is made available to him or her within a few days of the committee performance.

Auditing students may audit courses with a lecture or modified lecture format, with the consent of the instructor. Auditing is not permitted in courses that emphasize student participation and skill development (e.g., private applied or composition instruction, ensembles, aural skills courses).

Each semester, Oberlin faculty submit midterm grades to the Office of the Registrar to report on the progress of students who are taking their courses.

Faculty have several options for reporting midterm grades:

  • S  — Satisfactory; the student is working at a level appropriate to the current stage of the course
  • R  — Risk of failure; the student is at borderline performance
  • U  — Unsatisfactory performance, the student has a likelihood of failure unless there is a significant improvement; not working at appropriate level, skipping classes or not submitting work on time
  • N  — Not in attendance; the student has never joined the course in person or has informally withdrawn

Faculty post midterm grades by the end of the day on Tuesday following both fall and spring breaks. Students may view midterm grades two days later on Thursday following fall and spring breaks.

We encourage students to discuss midterm grades of R, U, and N with the faculty member(s) who awarded them, as well as with the student’s advisor.