Incomplete Grade Policy & Procedure

University Policy on Incomplete Grades

An incomplete grade may be given only when the student was approved to make up a single key requirement of a course such as a paper, exam, or major report. The student and instructor must complete/sign an Incomplete Grade Contract before the end of the course.

What is the student’s responsibility?

The student is responsible for contacting the instructor to request an incomplete. An incomplete may be given only when a student needs to make up a single key requirement of a course such as a paper, exam, or major report. If a student does not request an incomplete, the instructor must assign a grade at the time final grades are due.

 What is the instructor’s responsibility?

 The instructor has the discretion to give an incomplete when a student has not completed the requirements of a course. The instructor must establish a deadline to make up an incomplete grade.

If an incomplete is an appropriate option, the instructor must submit an Incomplete Grade Contract to her/his Program Manager immediately upon approving the incomplete grade.   If the request is not approved, the instructor will submit the grade earned by the student with an assumption of a grade of F or zero points for the missed assignment/project/exam.

 Note: In some degree programs, the academic dean/director may have guidelines regarding how an incomplete is given. Please consult with your academic dean/director.

What is the deadline to make up an incomplete?

The University has a one-year limit policy to make up incomplete grades; however, the instructor should establish an appropriate deadline to make up an incomplete. Instructors reserve the right to establish a deadline before the one-year limit and change the incomplete grade after such deadline passes.

Instructors are strongly encouraged to consult with their academic dean/director if they are unsure of an appropriate deadline to complete the work.

Note: In some academic programs, the academic dean/director may have expectations about setting deadlines for incomplete grades.

When should an instructor advise a student to withdraw from a course or request a leave of absence?

If a student does not complete two or more assignments, exams or major projects that represent a significant percentage of the final grade, the instructor should advise the student to contact his/her advisor in the Office of Academic Advising to discuss a plan of action.

If a student is not able to complete coursework because of a medical issue or death in the family, a leave of absence may be a more appropriate option. The instructor should refer the student to speak with an advisor in the Office of Academic Advising. The instructor should inform OAA and the academic dean/program director of the situation via email within 24 hours.

Note: Instructors should not advise a student to drop a course to avoid getting a failing grade or to avoid an alleged violation of the academic integrity policy.

What is the incomplete grade contract and how do I get the form?

The student and instructor must submit an Incomplete Grade Contract whenever an incomplete grade is given. Incomplete Grade Contracts should be submitted to the Program Manager no later than one week after the last day of the academic term.  The Contract can be found in the forms section of this website.

The expectations of the incomplete and the deadline to make up the work must be clearly stated in the Incomplete Grade Contract.

If a student does not complete the expectations of the Incomplete Grade Contract by the established deadline, the instructor must submit a final grade with an assumption of a grade of F or zero points for the missed assignment/project/exam.

 What if I am not sure if an incomplete is appropriate?

When in doubt, instructors should consult with their academic dean/program director before giving an incomplete grade.