Grading Policies

At the beginning of each College course, the instructor will inform students of the criteria to be used in determining the final grade. Students who enter the course late should be sure that they know these criteria. For academic credit courses, the instructor's assessment of each student's achievement will be in accordance with the grading system.

Grading Definitions

Grading DefinitionsGradeQuality Points per academic credit hour*
High AchievementA4.0
Good AchievementB+3.3
Satisfactory AchievementC2.0
Below Satisfactory AchievementC-1.7
Other Grade Notations
Withdrawal PassingWP------
Withdrawal FailingWF0.0
IncompleteI or •------
In ProgressIP------
Administrative WithdrawalAW------
SUNY GenEdSUNY------
Transfer CreditTR------
Immunization WithdrawnMW------
* GPA credits are assessed for college-level courses with course numbers of 100 or higher for which students have been assigned letter grades excluding P (Pass), AW (Administrative Withdrawal), MW (Immunization Withdrawal), W (Withdrawal), and WP (Withdrawal Passing), SUNY (SUNY GenEd), and TR (Transfer Credit).

Grade Notations

W - Withdrawal:

The W will be given to students who have officially withdrawn from a class after the third week and up to the end of the thirteenth week of classes.

X - Audit:

Students must declare their preference for audit at the time of registration.

I or • - Incomplete:

An incomplete may be issued upon the student’s request at the discretion of the instructor in situations in which a student has not completed the course requirements for medical or personal reasons documented to the instructor’s satisfaction. The student and the instructor must jointly notify academic records of the request and approval via the incomplete request form available from the academic records office. If the student fails to complete the requirements before the end of the fourth week of the semester following the semester in which the Incomplete was assigned, the grade will be changed automatically to an F. For self-paced courses, students must re-register for the course if requirements are not completed by the end of the fourth week of the semester following the semester in which the incomplete grade was assigned.

IP - In Progress:

The IP grade is designed to allow a student to reregister for a course in the next sequential semester or session, if the student has made significant progress in the course in the previous semester, but not progress sufficient to demonstrate mastery of the subject matter. Rather than have the student repeat the entire course, the student who receives the IP grade can pick up those learning objectives necessary to complete the course in the next sequential semester or session. Only courses with an approved continuance procedure can utilize the IP grade. Such a procedure spells out the process by which students continue their progress in the next semester or session. The procedure must be approved by the academic standards committee and the dean of instruction. No instructor will be required to accept IP students whose IP grades were assigned by another instructor. An IP grade will change to an F if a student has not re-registered for and achieved success in the course during the next sequential full semester.

F - Failing:

This grade will be given to students who have failed to complete course requirements. F is a failing grade and factors into the GPA.

MW - Immunization Withdrawal:

Students who do not submit their immunization records will be withdrawn from their courses. The MW grade is not calculated into the student’s GPA.


Students may apply up to six credit hours of coursework toward a degree program on a pass/fail basis. A pass grade will be assigned only if the student earns a minimum grade of C in the course. A written request to take a course pass/fail must be approved by the instructor and the program coordinator, and filed with the academic records office by the end of the drop period. Credits earned with a grade of P for courses taken on a pass/fail basis are not used in calculating the grade point average.


This grade is given for coursework accepted by Tompkins Cortland that meets the SUNY General Education (Gen. Ed.) requirements where the grade is a passing grade below a C (2.0). This coursework does not factor in a students GPA or count toward degree requirements.

TR - Transfer Credit:

This grade is given to coursework accepted by Tompkins Cortland from another college and does not factor into the GPA.

Grade Challenge

To start the process of challenging a course grade, submit a Grade Challenge Request.  

Early Student Progress Reports

Early Student Progress Reports are posted by the instructor in each 15-week course to provide the student an approximate assessment of early course achievement. The performance indicators are posted in the grades section of myTC3/myINFO by the end of the fourth full week of classes. This information does not appear on a student’s transcript and is not calculated into a student’s GPA. Students who receive S- or U grades are encouraged to consult with their instructors and advisors as soon as possible. The instructor’s approximate assessment of each student’s achievement will be in accordance with the following grade notations:

Performance IndicatorsGrades
Satisfactory Performance & Achievement  S
Less than Satisfactory Performance & Achievement  S-
Unsatisfactory Performance & Achievement and/or Failing
(This includes performance below a C level in classes where a C or higher is required – e.g., ENGL100, MATH090)

Repeating Courses

A course may be repeated, but credit will be granted only for the most recent grade. The most current grade will be used to compute the grade point average (GPA). All grades earned in repeated courses will be included on the student’s permanent record.

Withdrawal from the College

To withdraw from the College, a student must contact the Enrollment Services Center. Filling out the withdrawal form means your intention is to withdraw from every course for that semester. The regulation for assigning grades of W (withdrawal), WP (withdrawal passing), or WF (withdrawal/failing) are noted under Grade Notations, previous page.

Grade Point Average

The grade point average (GPA) is computed by:

  1. Multiplying the quality points for the letter grade earned by the number of GPA credits for the course.
  2. Adding the quality points earned in all courses taken.
  3. Dividing the sum of quality points by the total number of GPA credits.

Grades for equivalent credit courses and the grade notations of AW, W, WP, I, IP, P, SUNY, TR, MW, NC, and X are not used to calculate the GPA.

In computing grade point averages only credit courses taken at Tompkins Cortland are included.

Sample Grade Point Average Calculation

Example of GPA (Grade Point Average) calculation, with a failing grade (F) and a pass (P) included to demonstrate how they are calculated:

Course Credits Total GPA Credits Grade Quality Points Total Quality Points
ACCT 101 4 4 A 4.0 16.0
BIOL 104 4 4 C- 1.7 6.8
SOCI 101 3 3 B+ 3.3 9.9
MATH 102 3 3 F 0.0 0.0
FITN 108 1 -- P -- --
PSYC 101 3 3 C+ 2.3 6.9
Totals   17     39.6

Total Quality Points/Total GPA Credits = GPA

39.6/17 = 2.329 GPA