Registrar processes grade changes

By Madalyn Velisaris, Staff Writer

Thousands of grade changes have been processed by the Office of the Registrar from just this past fall semester alone.

To be more precise, there have been about 2,700 processed grade change requests from Jan. 2-4, said Lori Fuller, assistant registrar, and Rod Hoewing, associate registrar at the office, in a joint email.

The number of grade change requests is nothing abnormal for the office; they have not noticed much of an increase or decrease in grade corrections compared with other semesters.

There is no hard deadline for an instructor or department to submit a grade correction for a specific semester. The general practice is to follow the timeline from the Procedures for Review of Alleged Capricious Grading found in the Student Code, where the time frame to submit an appeal for review concerning a grade that might need to be changed is 30 business days after the start of the semester after the course with the issue was taken, Fuller and Hoewing said.

“There is a fairly standard volume of grade corrections processed relatively soon after grade entry deadline for each semester,” Fuller and Hoewing said.

“Those grade changes are processed rather quickly, as everyone involved in the grade change process realizes the importance of having accurate grades on student records in time to determine probation and drop status and/or academic recognition of Dean’s List.”

To have the grade correction process run as smoothly as possible, they recommend quick communication between the student and instructor as soon as the discrepancy appears on the academic record.

If the instructor has told the student they submitted a grade change request and the student does not see the grade change on their academic record between three to four business days, then the student can contact Academic Records & Graduation in the Office of the Registrar.

“The sooner the student contacts the instructor, the sooner the instructor can investigate the source of any variance and submit a corrected grade through the grade change system,” Fuller and Hoewing said.

Wade Fagen-Ulmschneider, teaching assistant professor in the College of Engineering, said he changed the way he grades to decrease the amount of grade corrections he submits.

In a follow-up email, Fagen-Ulmschneider said he started his new grading method in fall 2017 and has been using it ever since. With his method, he can submit the correct grade into enterprise before grades are due.

“At the end of the semester I always give students the ability to submit a course grade review, so if they feel that their grade is wrong after I post it on Compass, they can fill out an excel sheet that says what they think their grade should be in the course and then submit it to me,” he said.

Fagen-Ulmschneider has had a positive experience whenever he has had to submit a grade correction in the past and has experienced no problems or delays. He thinks it is a quality process.

He decided to change his grading method due to the grade correction process being time-consuming and the potential negative effect on students if there is a grading error on their academic record.

“There’s multiple different people who all have to approve that grade change before it takes effect, and because of that, you don’t know if it is going to take two days or two weeks,” he said.

To make sure his grades for each student are correct, he releases final grades about a week before they are due, creating a lot of time to do corrections before the due date if need be, Fagen-Ulmschneider said.

With his new grading method, Fagen-Ulmschneider does not submit as many grade corrections as he previously did, but still understands the importance of the grade correction process.

“Because they are so important and because they matter so much … it’s important that we do it right,” he said. “Sometimes it is frustrating to see a process that takes a week, but to know that that process impacts your GPA means that it is important that we do it right.”

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