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Grading Policy

Ref. No. Executive sponsor Policy steward Approval authority First approved Last reviewed Effective date Next review
23.11 Vice President, Academic Director, Enrolment & Registrar Executive Council May 21, 2019 Jan. 4, 2021 Jan. 4, 2021 Jan. 2026
  1. Purpose
    1. NSCC’s Grading Policy reflects and represents the College’s access and learning-centered approach to education. It is designed to ensure that students can expect evaluation and grading practices that are valid and accurate, transparent and timely, and reflect the College’s academic standards.
    2. NSCC recognizes that grading is an integral aspect of the academic process. An equitable and consistent grading system supports a quality student experience and upholds academic performance and the demonstration of learning outcomes as the measure of the significant and essential learning required to pass a course or program.
    3. Stewardship and implementation of the Grading Policy is the responsibility of the Director, Enrolment and Registrar, in partnership with Academic Schools, Campus Management, and Student Services teams, and other senior leadership.
    4. Grades are formalized through the Registrar’s Office and articulated on the student’s official academic record through the transcript.
  1. Scope
    1. This policy applies to all courses offered by NSCC that appear on the student’s official transcript. This includes credit courses, milestones and academic notations.
    2. This policy details the grades, statuses and notations recorded on the student’s official transcript.
    3. This policy does not apply to the Adult Learning Program (ALP); the Nova Scotia High School Diploma program.
  1. Definitions
Term Definition
Aegrotat standing Granting credit for a course a student was unable to complete, due to exceptional circumstances. A student requesting Aegrotat Standing must have completed a substantial portion of the course, with passing grades, and must be in good financial standing with the College. Request for aegrotat standing must be made in writing to the Academic Chair and is approved jointly by the Dean and the Director of Enrolment & Registrar.
Audit Occurs when a student participates in a course without being evaluated. Students auditing courses will not receive credit.
Faculty A person or persons appointed by the College to deliver a course and evaluate students in accordance with the learning outcomes and the course outline.
Grade NSCC’s numeric or alpha notation granted a student at the completion of a course and posted to their official transcript. A final grade represents a student’s achievement in a course. A grade is not official until released by the Registrar’s office and is available to students through the College information system.
Honours The recognition of academic excellence earned by students who meet a defined academic benchmark in their program of study. Honours recognition is notated on the parchment/credential and the student’s official transcript/academic record.
Incomplete A temporary “I” notation on a transcript, indicating the student did not complete all learning outcomes and course requirements by the end date of the course. ’Incomplete’ is granted when a faculty approves an extension, usually 30 days, to complete all course requirements and receive a final grade. Incomplete notations will only be granted to students who are passing the course for work submitted to that point.
Learning Outcomes Formal statements of what a learner is expected to know, understand and/or demonstrate in order to receive a pass mark in a course.
Milestones Non-course program requirements represented on a transcript.
Pass mark The minimum numeric or alpha notation on a transcript that signifies successful completion of a course. A pass in each credit course is 60% unless otherwise stated. For courses where the pass mark is more than 60%, or where the grade is depicted with an alpha notation, the course outline will specify the requirements.
Residency requirement The percentage of total units in a program of study that must be completed by a student through NSCC to be granted an NSCC credential. NSCC’s residency requirement is 25%.
Student Services A team of professionals available to students to support and assist them in their learning at NSCC.
Supplemental evaluation An additional assessment/evaluation opportunity granted to a student who has been unsuccessful in a course.
Transfer credit The granting of an NSCC credit for learning that was successfully completed at another institution. Transfer credit is granted on the basis that learning outcomes met through another institution are deemed equivalent to NSCC’s course learning outcomes.
Transcript

The document that records credit courses taken and grades achieved by a student. It reflects an accurate and complete history of a student’s academic activity and achievement.

  1. Official transcript is an original printing of a student’s academic record. It bears the signature of the Director of Enrolment and Registrar, and the College’s official seal.
  2. Unofficial transcript is a copy of a student’s academic record that does not bear the signature of the Director of Enrolment and Registrar and/or the College’s official seal.
Transcript notation The abbreviation used on a transcript to represent a status, grade or outcome for a course. Notations on transcripts include those currently and historically used by the College.
Withdrawal Occurs when a student officially removes themselves from enrolment and participation in a course or program.
  1. Policy
    1. Transcripts
      1. Student academic records are recorded and demonstrated through a transcript.
      2. Student academic records are confidential and official transcripts are issued only upon written consent of the student, through a document request form.
      3. A student must be in good financial standing with the College to be issued an official transcript.
      4. There is no charge for official NSCC transcript(s).
    2. Transcript Notations
      Notation Grade
      AU audit - no credit granted
      CE credit earned
      CON continuing in course next semester
      CR transfer credit granted
      F fail
      I incomplete
      M curriculum modifications
      P pass / recognition of prior learning
      W Withdrawal
    3. Grading System
      1. Grades are the result of faculty’s evaluation of the academic performance of the student in a course and are based on meeting the learning outcomes of the course.
      2. Faculty is/are responsible to enter the course grades in the College’s database by the published deadlines outlined by the Registrar’s office in the Academic Calendar.
      3. Faculty can release unofficial grades to students, with the understanding that official grades are approved and posted by the Registrar’s office.
      4. Grades are recorded in the College’s database and reflected on the student’s transcript. Most course grades are reflected as a numeric percentage, but some are assigned a notation as outlined in clause 4.2, Transcript Notations
      5. Grades are not official until recorded and released to students through the College’s database, with approval of the Director, Enrolment and Registrar.
      6. The College’s general pass mark is 60% on a credit course. In cases where the pass mark is different, information will be provided to students in the course outline.
      7. Some course pass marks may reflect regulations or requirements of industry accrediting bodies. In such cases, information will be provided to students in the course outline. Changes to a final, official grade are permitted up to 30 calendar days following the end of the term in which the final grade is assigned.
      8. All faculty requests to change a final grade must be submitted in writing and approved by the Academic Chair and shared with the Director of Enrolment and Registrar.
      9. All faculty requests to change a final grade after 30 calendar days beyond the end of the term must be approved by the Dean and the Director of Enrolment and Registrar.
    4. Course Withdrawal
      1. A student who wishes to withdraw from a course must complete the Course Revision form and submit it to Student Services. Official course withdrawals are dated the day the completed form is received in Student Services.
      2. To withdraw from a course without reference on the official transcript, a student must officially withdraw by the deadline date outlined in the Academic Calendar.
      3. To withdraw from a course and receive a ‘W’ notation (withdrawn), a student must officially withdraw by the deadline date outlined in the Academic Calendar.
      4. A grade of ‘F’ will be assigned to a course where a student has not officially withdrawn by the deadline date to withdraw outlined in the Academic Calendar.
      5. Non-attendance of classes does not constitute an official course withdrawal and may result in a grade of ‘F’ on the student’s academic record.
    5. Program Withdrawal
      1. A student who wishes to withdraw from a program must complete the Program Withdrawal form and submit it to Student Services. Official program withdrawals are dated the day the completed form is received in Student Services.
      2. Non-attendance of classes does not constitute an official program withdrawal and may result in a grade of ‘F’ on the student’s academic record for all courses in the term.
      3. A student who withdraws may be required to reapply to the program through the admissions process.
    6. Aegrotat Standing
      1. A student requesting Aegrotat Standing must have completed a substantial portion of the course, with passing grades, and must be in good financial standing with the College.
      2. Application for aegrotat standing must be made in writing to the Academic Chair. Decisions on Aegrotat Standing will be made by the Dean and the Director of Enrolment and Registrar.
      3. Documentation supporting the reason(s) for aegrotat standing must be submitted.
      4. Requests for aegrotat standing must be made before the last scheduled day of classes.
      5. Courses granted aegrotat standing will not count in the computation of honours.
      6. Not all courses are eligible for aegrotat standing.
      7. Aegrotat standing is notated with a ‘P’ (pass) on the student’s official transcript.
    7. Incomplete (I)
      1. An Incomplete (I) may be assigned to a student who has not completed all required elements of a course.
      2. An incomplete grade should not be assigned to students who completed a course with a failing grade.
      3. Faculty is responsible to determine whether a student’s standing in a course meets the criteria to be granted an Incomplete, based on the course outline and learning outcomes for the course.
      4. Faculty can approve the opportunity for a student to receive an ‘I’ (incomplete) in a course to complete course work within thirty (30) days and receive a final grade in accordance with the assessment/evaluation criteria aligned to the learning outcomes in that course.
      5. An Incomplete will change to an ‘F’ on the student record and transcript if the required work is not completed within 30 calendar days.
      6. A student given an Incomplete is permitted to proceed to the next course for which the incomplete course is a prerequisite. If an Incomplete is changed to an ‘F’, the student will be removed from the next level course.
    8. Supplemental Evaluation
      1. Not all courses are eligible for a supplemental evaluation. Courses exempt from supplemental evaluation include courses with a pass/fail final grade and Work Integrated Learning courses.
      2. Approval to exempt a course from eligibility for supplemental evaluation must be granted by the School dean and the Director of Enrolment and Registrar.
      3. Where a course supplemental evaluation is permitted, a student is eligible to complete one supplemental evaluation per term if their final course grade is within 10 percentage points of the pass mark.
      4. The student must submit a request in writing to faculty within five business days of the posting of the final grade for the term, as outlined in the Academic Calendar.
      5. Changes to grades based on the results of a supplemental evaluation must be submitted to Student Services as outlined in the Academic Calendar.
      6. Upon successful completion of a supplemental evaluation, the minimum passing grade will be granted for the course.
      7. A CE grade (credit earned) cannot be assigned to a course passed through a supplemental evaluation.
      8. Unsuccessful completion of a supplemental evaluation will assign the original course grade as the final mark.
      9. The result of a supplemental evaluation is eligible for student appeal.
    9. Honours
      1. A student achieves Honours standing when the following criteria has been met:
        1. A cumulative average of 85% in all courses, with no mark less than 80% in any courses required to graduate.
        2. A final grade of CE, Credit Earned, will not be included in the calculation of Honours.
        3. A minimum 25% of courses obtained must be numerical grades and completed with NSCC.
        4. The College’s residency requirement has been met and the student has taken a minimum of 25% of their program with NSCC.
      2. Courses taken in another NSCC program that are a program requirement in the student’s current program will be included in evaluating the achievement of Honours.
      3. The achievement of Honours is noted on the official transcript and the official credential.
    10. Exceptions
      1. Exceptions to this policy require the approval of the appropriate school dean, in consultation with the Director of Enrolment & Registrar. Decisions on exceptions are final and not subject to student appeal.
  1. Policy Supports

Related Policies & Procedures:

23.01 Graduation and Program Progression Policy
32.01 Student Appeals Policy
32.02 Student Appeals Procedure

Related Forms:

Document Request Form
Course Revision Form
Program Withdrawal Form

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