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    Russell Sage College
  Oct 24, 2020
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Academic Policy: Grading

Appeals of Academic Issues

Evaluation of Academic Work

Russell Sage College uses the following grading system with plus and minus designations:

  A Excellent
  B Good
  C Satisfactory
  D Passing
  F Failure

I Incomplete. A student unable to complete all the work in a course as a result of illness or a comparable emergency may request a grade of “Incomplete” (I) from the instructor. In order for a grade of “I” to be granted, a student should have completed most of the work for the course in the opinion of the instructor. If an “I” is granted, the student has the right to complete the work within the length of time specified by the faculty member, not to exceed the end of the eighth week of the following semester. However, students who are pending an academic action of academic warning, academic review, or academic suspension must complete all work prior to the beginning of the next fall or spring semester.

The student will not be allowed to re-register for the course (either for credit or audit) in a subsequent semester until the Incomplete is removed.

It is the responsibility of the student to be aware of their grades in all classes prior to requesting an Incomplete. Should they be at risk of being placed on probation or suspended, arranging for an Incomplete may result in an earlier deadline than anticipated. Faculty are not obligated to offer extensions under these circumstances.

The faculty member and student should write up and sign an agreement using the Incomplete/Extension Request Form, including a copy of the course syllabus, clearly identifying:

  • the specific reasons for the request
  • the work that is to be completed, and
  • the deadline for the submission of the work.

Upon completion of the work, the faculty member files a Grade Change Form with the Registrar’s Office in order to convert the “I” grade to an appropriate letter grade. If the faculty member does not change the Incomplete grade by the end of the eighth week of the next semester, the Registrar will replace the grade of “I” with the letter grade “F”. Any agreed-upon extension of time to the deadline must be reported to the Registrar in writing via memorandum or e-mail.

P Passing. Indicates that the student has passed the course. (See policy on Pass/Fail grades, below)

W Withdrew. This grade can only be used by the Registrar’s Office when the student officially withdraws from the class.

RP Research in Progress. In undergraduate courses that are specifically designated as one of the following: Senior Project, Senior Independent Project, Research Project, Research in (discipline), Honors Research (in discipline), Honors Project, Senior Research Study, Senior Seminar, Seminar (400 level capstone course), incomplete work may be assigned a grade of “RP.” “RP” grades indicate that the initial expectation was that the work to be evaluated normally requires more than one semester. The “RP” grade may not be used in place of an incomplete (“I” grade) for any course which students are normally expected to complete within the original semester. Within one year from the time the “RP” grade is assigned, students must complete a course for which the “RP” grade was given. A student whose research requires longer than one year may request an extension of the “RP” for up to one additional year. The program coordinator may grant the request for an extension of the “RP” grade, depending on the degree of completion of the project. The extension will be granted only if there has been substantial progress.

NC No-Credit. In courses as approved the the appropriate Curriculum Committee, including WLD 101 and WLD 201, students who make a good faith effort in the course but fail to earn a grade of C or higher may be assigned a grade of NC. The NC does not affect the GPA. The NC may be assigned only once per course; should a student re-take the course and still not achieve a grade of C or higher, they will receive an F.

Grading System

To determine a student’s grade point average (GPA) the College uses this scale:

 A+ = 4.000
 A = 4.000
 A- = 3.700
 B+ = 3.300
 B = 3.000
 B- = 2.700
 C+ = 2.300
 C = 2.000
 C- = 1.700
 D+ = 1.300
 D = 1.000
 D- = 0.700
 F = 0.000

Note: I, NC, P, and W grades are not calculated in grade point average.

Calculating Grade Point Average (GPA)


A student with one “A-,” two “Bs,” one “C+,” and one “D+” would have the following grade point average:

A-   3 credit course x 3.700 quality points = 11.100  
B   3 credit course x 3.000 quality points = 9.000  
B   4 credit course x 3.000 quality points = 12.000  
C+   3 credit course x 2.300 quality points = 6.900  
D+   3 credit course x 1.300 quality points =   3.900  
  =16 total credits   42.900  
GPA=   Total Quality Points   =  42.900  = 2.680  
  Total Graded Credits   16.0    

Five courses for 16 credits with a GPA of 2.680


The pass/fail (P/F) option should encourage students to select courses offered by departments outside their major area and requirements. The policies governing the use of the P/F option apply only to those courses that can be elected P/F. Courses offered only on a P/F basis are excluded from the limitations. Faculty do not know who elects a course P/F. They will record a letter grade. The Registrar then assigns the appropriate grade. Grades above “F” are considered passing.

  1. Students completing 120 credits at Sage may elect four courses P/F; transfer students may elect 1 pass/fail option for every 24 credits taken at RSC toward their baccalaureate degree.
  2. These courses may not be major or minor requirements, including required support courses in a major program. In addition, HUM 112, ITK 101, ITK 301, WLD 101, WLD 201, WLD 401, WRT 101, and WRT 201 cannot be taken using P/F.
  3. Election must be made at the time of registration, up to and including the last day to withdraw from a course.
  4. When a student withdraws from a course elected P/F within the normal period for such withdrawal, it will not count toward the P/F maximum.
  5. When requesting for a P/F course, students may choose to have a letter grade recorded under certain specified conditions by filling out the appropriate section of the P/F form. The student must complete this section at the time of registration. Courses taken for a letter grade under this option still count as courses taken P/F.
  6. To be considered for Dean’s List in a given regular term, a student must take a minimum of twelve credit hours on a letter graded basis during that term.
  7. Since course instructors do not know who elects a course P/F they submit a letter grade to the Registrar’s office, who records the appropriate grade. Grades above F are considered passing. The Registrar’s Office updates the record to list P grade (D- or higher) or F grade (student failed course).
  8. Students may use the P/F option to repeat a course that is approved for Pass/Fail.
  9. If students use a P/F option for a course that is later listed as a requirement in a major program they change to, the P/F grade will be cancelled and the original grade will be used.


Auditors receive no credit. They are not required to submit credentials if they intend only to audit. The status is on a space-available basis, limited to not more than 10 percent of a class enrollment, and to be declared at registration, or no later than the end of the first week of classes. Auditors pay all fees and a reduced tuition.

Repeat Course Policy

Students are permitted to re-take any course. Credits and grade points for the first grade will be deleted from the cumulative record, while the original letter grade will remain on the transcript and the repeat noted. The course information will be listed in the usual manner the second time it appears on the transcript. Generally, the course should be repeated in the first semester that it is subsequently offered. However, it may be repeated any time prior to graduation. No matter which grade is higher, the most recent grade counts in figuring the cumulative grade point average.

In situations where a student has repeated a course previously taken for a letter grade at Russell Sage College, the grade replacement may not be used to remove term probation from the semester in which the course was previously taken.

Students may repeat no more than three previously passed courses while enrolled in a program leading to a Bachelor’s degree. There is no specific limit on the number of courses a student may repeat for a course in which they received an F or W.

A student who has failed a course using the P/F option may elect to retake the course for either a grade or a P/F option. The retaken P/F course counts as an additional use of the P/F option. Students may use the P/F option to repeat a course that is approved for Pass/Fail.

All course repeats must be taken at Sage. In the event that a student’s program of study is jeopardized due to the lack of course offerings at Sage, students may seek approval of the Program Coordinator/Department Chair to take the course elsewhere. The sequence of certain programs may not allow multiple retakes. Consult your Program Coordinator/Department Chair for further details. Students should seek approval of their advisor prior to pre-registration, as the sequence of their program may be affected by the need to re-take a course. Students should note that 30 of their last 45 credits must be in residence and, therefore, they are not eligible to take courses outside of Sage without the permission of the Dean. Only credits transfer - not grades.

Repetition of coursework for which credit has been granted may jeopardize financial aid eligibility. It is the student’s responsibility to understand the consequences of repeating courses on their own financial aid situation. Students with questions regarding the impact of course repeats on student financial aid should consult the Office of Student Services.

Appeals of Academic Issues

In the event that a student has a complaint involving a faculty member or wishes to question a grade, the student should follow the procedures listed below:

  • Meet or speak with the instructor involved. In the best interests of both parties, resolution ideally should be reached at this stage.
  • Meet or speak with the instructor’s department chairperson or program director if resolution is not reached between the student and instructor.
  • Meet or speak with the Dean of the College only in the event that the student feels procedures were not followed.

The Provost is the final decision-making authority.