Chapter 3: Academic Record

Beginning in Fall 2004, graduate credit at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is measured using semester hours, and the numbering of graduate level courses changed from 300- and 400- level courses to 400- and 500-level courses.  Some 600 and 700 level courses are also approved for graduate credit.

A. Grading System

Details of the grading system in use by the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign are found in the Student Code. See article 3-102, article 3-103, and article 3-104 of the Student Code for more information on course grades.

  1. Courses Grades
  2. Minimum Grades and Credit for Repeated Courses

  1. Course Grades:
    Grades and the points used in the computation of grade point averages are as follows:
     
    A+ 4.00      D+ 1.33
    A 4.00   D 1.00
    A- 3.67   D- 0.67
    B+ 3.33   F 0.00
    B 3.00   F by rule 0.00
    B- 2.67   ABS 0.00
    C+ 2.33      
    C 2.00      
    C- 1.67      

    A grade of F may be assigned to courses dropped for academic irregularities. Since Fall 2004, a grade of F is assigned when an I grade or DFR in a non-thesis course grade is not replaced with a permanent grade by the deadline. See DFR and I below for more information.

    F-by-rule. Prior to Fall 2004, a grade of “FR” was automatically assigned when a grade of Incomplete or DFR in a non-thesis course had not been replaced by a letter grade by the deadline. See DFR and I below for more information.

    The grade of ABS may be assigned when the student is absent from the final examination without an acceptable excuse. A grade of ABS counts as a failure and is not acceptable for degree credit.

    In addition to assigned grades that are included in the computation of Grade Point Average (GPA), the following notations may be used, but are not included in computation of GPA:

    AU No Points
    CR-NC No Points
    DFR No Points
    I No Points
    NR No Points
    NV No Points
    S/U No Points
    W No Points

    AU – Audit. A permanent notation that indicates attendance as a visitor only. Information about auditing a course is located in chapter 2.B.6.

    CR-NC – Credit earned-No Credit earned (see chapter 2.B.7.).

    DFR – Grade deferred. To be used only in those thesis, research, and special problems courses extending over more than one semester that are taken by graduate students as preparation for the thesis, and in other approved courses that extend over more than one semester. The symbol DFR in courses other than thesis (499/599) must be converted to a permanent grade no later than 5:00 p.m. on Reading Day of the next semester in which the student is registered. If no grade change is submitted within that period, the DFR will be converted as follows: for graded courses to an F, for S/U courses to a U, and for C/NC courses to an NC. The DFR symbol for thesis courses (499/599) stands indefinitely until a Supplemental Grade Report Form is submitted by the adviser at the completion (successful or unsuccessful) of the thesis. See chapter 4.A.6. for more information on thesis research credit.

    I – Incomplete. Approved extension of time to complete the final examination or other requirements of the course. (Entitles the student to an examination later without fee, or to additional time to complete other requirements of the course. The final grade must be reported on the Supplemental Grade Report Form.) The instructor may authorize such extension of time for a graduate student regardless of the level of the course. A grade of Incomplete must be replaced by a letter grade no later than 5:00 p.m. of Reading Day of the next semester in which the student is registered or it automatically becomes an F grade. If the student does not enroll the following semester in a graded course, the incomplete grade becomes an F-by-rule after one year. Incomplete grades earned in the spring semester will not be converted to F-by-rule until the end of the following fall semester, whether or not the student registers for the summer term. A student will not be certified for a degree with an Incomplete grade in the academic record.

    NR – Not reported. This temporary notation is automatically entered if an instructor does not report a grade by the deadline. A student will not be certified for a degree with an NR notation in the academic record.

    NV – Not valid. This temporary notation is used when an instructor reports a grade in a mode that has not been approved for use with that course.

    S/U – Satisfactory-Unsatisfactory. A permanent notation used as a final grade only in courses (generally thesis research or seminar courses) approved for this grade mode.

    W – Withdraw. A permanent notation signifying an approved withdraw without credit, (see chapter 7.C for more information)
     

  2. Minimum Grades and Credit for Repeated Courses:
    The Graduate College has no minimum grade policy, but a department or program may set a minimum grade to be earned in order for a course to count as credit toward the degree.  Students are responsible for knowing their departmental requirements. The program determines whether hours for repeated courses count toward the degree. When a graduate student repeats a course, all hours and grades count toward the cumulative graduate GPA.

 

B. Academic Standing

Graduate students must maintain a minimum grade point average (GPA) and make satisfactory progress in all other aspects of their degree programs in order to continue as students. Academic Standing reflects the student’s level of accomplishment with regard to these aspects. The Graduate College monitors cumulative graduate GPA, and the graduate programs monitor all other aspects of academic progress. There are three categories of Academic Standing: Good Standing, Probation and Dismissal.

  1. Minimum GPA
  2. Grade Point Average (GPA) Computation
  3. Academic Standing
  4. Minimum Program GPAs

  1. Minimum GPA:
    Campus policy requires a student to maintain a minimum cumulative graduate GPA of 2.75 in order to continue in an advanced degree program, and to have a cumulative graduate GPA of at least 2.75 to graduate. Many departments, however, require a minimum of 3.0 or higher. For departments with higher minima, the Graduate College enforces the department’s minimum based on the calculated graduate cumulative GPA. Students enrolled in joint degree programs must meet the minimum GPA requirements of both degree programs in order to maintain satisfactory academic progress and to graduate.
    1. Minimum GPA Requirements by Program. All graduate students must meet the minimum degree GPA specified by the degree program in order to have the degree certified and to graduate. Students admitted in an earlier term may have a different requirement. See the Academic Catalog for the term of entry to determine minimum required GPA.
       
  2. Grade Point Average (GPA) Computation:
    The graduate GPA includes all hours and grades for all courses taken while enrolled as a graduate student. See chapter 3.A.2. for information about repeated courses. The GPA component of academic status is calculated at the end of each semester. At the point of calculation, graduate students must have a cumulative graduate GPA at or above their department’s minimum to be in good standing. See chapter 3.A.1. for more information about grade points used in computations.
     
  3. Academic Standing:
    All graduate students must meet the minimum program grade point average (GPA) specified by the program in order to have the degree certified and to graduate. The Graduate College monitors minimum program cumulative GPA, and failure to meet this requirement in any term can result in the student being placed on probation or dismissed from the Graduate College. Other factors that determine satisfactory academic progress are monitored by the student's program, and failure to meet these requirements can result in the program recommending to the Graduate College that the student be placed on probation or dismissed from the Graduate College.
    1. Good Standing:
      Good academic standing requires more than an acceptable cumulative GPA. Graduate students must make satisfactory progress in all aspects of their program in order to continue as students and to graduate. Additional factors that a program may use to assess academic progress include, but are not limited to, performance in course work, satisfactory and timely completion of all milestones as determined by the program, satisfactory progress in research, overall graduate and/or program GPA, and performance on qualifying, preliminary, and other examinations. Failure to meet these requirements can result in the program recommending to the Graduate College that the student be placed on probation or dismissed from the Graduate College. Good standing can also be referred to as Full Graduate Standing, which is the normal status of graduate students with no holds (chapter 3.B.3.) or limited status (chapter 2.A.1) or probation status at the University.
       
    2. Probation:
      Students placed on probation have one semester to improve their standing to Full Standing, or will be dismissed from the Graduate College. A student who has a cumulative graduate GPA below the degree program's minimum at the end of any semester of enrollment will be placed on Graduate College probation. Once a student has been placed on probation, the student must raise the cumulative GPA to his/her program's minimum by the end of the next term of enrollment, or face dismissal from the Graduate College. 
       
    3. Admission on Limited Status Due to Low GPA or No Comparable Bachelor’s Degree:
      Students who are admitted to the Graduate College on limited status because of no comparable bachelor’s degree or low GPA are admitted on probation (see chapter 2.A.1 for more information). If these students do not meet the minimum GPA for their program in the first semester of graduate work, they will receive a notice of dismissal from the Graduate College (see chapter 3.B).
       
    4. Dismissal:
      A graduate student placed on probation who fails to improve the GPA to the required level by the end of the next term of enrollment will receive a notice of dismissal from the Graduate College. This action prohibits the student from registering and drops any courses for which the student has pre-registered. If a student is dismissed from the Graduate College because of a low cumulative graduate GPA, the graduate student petition process may be used to request reinstatement. The Graduate College will consider petitions containing strong program support and strong justification based on other factors pertinent to the program's determination of satisfactory academic progress.
       
    5. Minimum Program GPAs:
      All graduate students must meet the minimum degree GPA specified by the degree program in order to have the degree certified and to graduate. Below are the current GPA requirements by program. Students admitted in an earlier term may have a different requirement. See the Academic Catalog for your term of entry.   

       

      Program or Major Minimum GPA
      Accountancy 3.0
      Advertising 2.75
      Aerospace Engineering 3.0
      African Studies 3.25
      Agricultural and Applied Economics 3.0
      Agricultural and Biological Engineering 3.0
      Agricultural and Consumer Economics 3.0
      Agricultural Education 2.75
      Agricultural Engineering 3.0
      Agricultural Production 2.75
      Animal Biology (see Biology)  
      Animal Sciences 3.0
      Anthropology 3.0
      Architecture (all programs) 2.75
      Art and Design (all programs) 2.75
      Art Education 2.75
      Art History 2.75
      Asian Studies 2.75
      Astronomy 3.0
      Atmospheric Sciences 3.0
      Audiology 3.0
      Biochemistry 3.0
      Bioprocessing & Bioenergy 2.75
      Bioengineering 3.0
      Bioinformatics (Animal Sciences, Bioengineering, Computer Sciences, Crop Sciences, Library and Information Science) 3.0
      Bioinformatics (Chemical and Biological Engineering) 2.75
      Biology (all programs) 3.0
      Biophysics and Computational Biology 3.0
      Business Administration 2.75
      Business Administration MBA 2.75
      Business Administration Executive MBA 2.75
      Cell and Developmental Biology M.S. 2.75
      Cell and Developmental Biology Ph.D. 3.0
      Chemical Engineering 2.75
      Civil and Environmental Engineering (all programs) 2.75
      Chemistry (all programs) 3.0
      Classics (all programs) 2.75
      Communication (LAS) 2.75
      Communications (ICR) 3.0
      Communications & Media 3.0
      Community Health 3.0
      Comparative Biosciences 3.0
      Comparative Literature 3.25
      Computer Science 3.0
      Curriculum and Instruction (all programs) 3.0
      Creative Writing 3.0
      Crop Sciences 3.0
      Dance 2.75
      East Asian Languages and Cultures 2.75
      East Asian Studies 2.75
      Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Biology 3.0
      Economics 3.0
      Educational Organization and Leadership 3.0
      Educational Policy Studies 3.0
      Education Policy, Organization and Leadership 3.0
      Educational Psychology 3.0
      Electrical and Computer Engineering 3.0
      Engineering 3.0
      English 3.0
      English as a Second Language, Teaching of 3.0
      Entomology 3.0
      European Union Studies 2.75
      Finance 3.0
      Financial Engineering 2.75
      Food Science and Human Nutrition 3.0
      French 2.75
      General Engineering 2.75
      Geography 3.0
      Geology (all programs) 3.0
      Germanic Languages and Literatures 3.0
      Health Communication 2.75
      History (all programs) 2.75
      Human and Community Development 2.75
      Human Resource Education 3.0
      Human Resources and Industrial Relations 3.0
      Industrial Engineering 3.0
      Informatics 2.75
      Information Management 2.75
      Journalism 3.0
      Kinesiology 3.0
      Landscape Architecture 3.0
      Latin American and Caribbean Studies 3.25
      Law (all programs) 2.75
      Library and Information Science, M.S. 2.75
      Library and Information Science, C.A.S. and Ph.D. 3.25
      Linguistics 3.0
      Management 2.75
      Materials Engineering 3.0
      Materials Science and Engineering 3.0
      Mathematics (all master's programs) 3.0
      Mathematics, Ph.D. 3.25
      Mechanical Engineering 3.0
      Microbiology 3.0
      Molecular and Cellular Biology 2.75
      Molecular and Integrative Physiology 2.75
      Music (all programs) 3.0
      Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences 3.0
      Neuroscience 3.0
      Nuclear, Plasma, and Radiological Engineering (all programs) 2.75
      Nutritional Sciences 3.0
      Pathobiology 3.0
      Philosophy 3.25
      Physics (all programs) 2.75
      Plant Biology 3.0
      Plant Biotechnology 3.0
      Political Science 3.0
      Psychology 2.75
      Psychological Sciences 2.75
      Public Health 3.0
      Recreation, Sport and Tourism 3.0
      Regional Planning 3.0
      Rehabilitation 3.0
      Religion 2.75
      Russian and East European Studies 3.25
      Slavic Languages and Literature 2.75
      Social Work 3.0
      Sociology 3.25
      South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies 3.25
      Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese (all programs) 3.0
      Special Education 3.0
      Speech and Hearing Science (all programs) 3.0
      Speech Communication 2.75
      Statistics (Applied and Economic) 3.0
      Statistics (Analytical, MS and PhD) 2.75
      Strategic Brand Communication 2.75
      Systems and Entrepreneurial Engineering 3.25
      Taxation 3.0
      Teaching of Earth Science 3.0
      Technical Systems Management 2.75
      Technology Management 2.75
      Theatre 3.0
      Theoretical and Applied Mechanics 3.0
      Translation and Interpreting 2.75
      Urban Planning 3.0
      Veterinary Biosciences 3.0
      Veterinary Clinical Medicine 3.0

       

C. Transfer of Credit

There are two types of credit that a graduate student may wish to transfer. Graduate students may wish to transfer credit completed outside the Graduate College, or graduate students may wish to transfer credit from one graduate degree program to another graduate degree program within the Graduate College at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Different rules apply for each type of transfer of credit.

  1. Transferring Credit from Outside the Graduate College
  2. Transferring Credit between Programs within the Graduate College

  1. Transferring Credit from Outside the Graduate College:
    Graduate students may request transfer of credit from outside of the Graduate College at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to be counted toward a graduate degree, but it is generally limited to a maximum of 12 semester hours.

    Types of credit allowed to transfer. Course work completed outside the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Graduate College that can be transferred includes these types:

    • graduate level work taken as an undergraduate at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

    • graduate level work taken at another accredited institution

    • graduate level work completed while enrolled as a non-degree student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

 

For credit types allowed to transfer, only credit from outside the Graduate College that meets the conditions below will be considered for transfer:

  • that has not previously been applied toward a degree or other transcripted credential,

  • that is graded graduate level course work from an accredited institution, and

  • for which the student has achieved a grade of B or better.

When supporting requests for transfer credit, it is the program's responsibility to determine whether old course work is still relevant to the current degree.​

 

Applying transfer credit. Students utilizing transfer credit to count toward their degree need to be aware of residency requirements and how those limits effect the total number of hours applied toward doctoral or master’s level degrees.

Credit from outside the Graduate College may not be transferred to count toward Stage II or Stage III of a doctoral program (see chapter 6.A).
 
To request transfer of credit from outside the Graduate College, a student should submit the appropriate form, accompanied by official transcripts, and validation by specialists in the area of the course work in the student’s department that the course work is both applicable and of an appropriate level of difficulty.
 
Most transfer credit will be reflected on the transcript without course titles and grades. The exceptions are:

Students who have earned up to 12 hours of graduate credit while enrolled as a non-degree student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign may request those hours and up to 12 hours of graduate credit taken at another institution. These requests may be submitted after the student receives notice of admission.

  • graduate credit transferred from the University of Illinois at Chicago or from the University of Illinois at Springfield,

  • graduate credit earned through the BTAA  Traveling Scholar Program.

Transferring Credit between Programs within the Graduate College:
Graduate students may request transfer of credit within the Graduate College at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to be counted toward a graduate degree. For these requests, there is no limit on the number of hours that a student may request be transferred. 

Between graduate programs. Graduate students may request transfer of credit from one graduate program at this University to another graduate program at this University as long as:

  • ​it was not applied toward another degree, and

  • The Graduate College requires that both departments involved approve the transfer of work from one program to the other.

The Graduate College requires that both departments involved approve the transfer of work from one program to the other.

To request a transfer of credit from one program to another within the Graduate College, a student should submit the appropriate form clearly specifying the above requirements have been met.

Into graduate programs. Graduate students may request transfer of credit earned within the Graduate College into one of its graduate programs. Examples include: 

  • The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is a member of the Big Ten Academic Alliance, and credits earned through its Traveling Scholar Program are earned within the Graduate College.

  • Graduate level work completed while enrolled as a non-degree student admitted by the Graduate College are earned within the Graduate College.

The Graduate College requires that the transfer of such work into a graduate program be approved by the program’s department or governing unit.