Calendar for Fall 2020 and Continuation of Grading Options from Spring 2020

June 19, 2020

Faculty Guidance for Fall 2020: Communication 3
Calendar for Fall 2020 and Continuation of Grading Options from Spring 2020
Division of Academic Affairs

 

The message from the President of the University of Illinois System and the Chancellors that you received yesterday (June 18) provides important information about Fall Semester Plans. This email provides broad guidance in the areas of Instruction, Housing/Dining, Campus Life, Research, Employees, Testing and Notification, and General Safety. UIS will be providing a follow-up communication designed for a broad audience (students, faculty, staff, prospective students and their families, the public at large) on or about July 1 that provides more detailed information about these topics that are unique to our campus. Following the UIS Fall Planning communication, the Provost will be providing an even more detailed version of the Fall Plan for UIS to faculty and staff. I offer this as a general timeline for the work and planning that will lead to a successful launch of the Fall semester at UIS.

This communication is intended to inform you of some additional decisions that have been recommended during the course of planning for Fall. The Senate Executive Committee has met and endorsed the following recommendations received from the Academic Planning Team.

Calendar for Fall 2020

The Academic Planning Team recommends that the beginning and ending dates for the Fall 2020 semester remain unchanged. However, the Team does recommend that the last two weeks of the semester following Thanksgiving be offered remotely. There are several reasons for this recommendation. First, there are concerns that there will be a second wave of the pandemic in late Fall. Second, if there is a second wave at this time it will overlap significantly with the regular flu season. Third, the travel of students, faculty, and staff normally associated with the Thanksgiving break introduces additional risk for the campus community during their return from the long weekend. Finally, making this decision now allows faculty more time to think and prepare proactively for the end of the semester. Accordingly, faculty are encouraged to prepare for the last week of instruction and for the following week of finals to be delivered remotely.

Students will be encouraged to complete the semester remotely if they travel from campus for Thanksgiving. Residence halls, the University Union, and all other residence life facilities will remain open throughout the totality of the semester unless conditions require that they be closed for reasons of health and safety.

Grading Options for Fall 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unprecedented circumstances for University of Illinois Springfield’s students, faculty, and staff. In recognition of these challenges, UIS leadership (again, in consultation with the Campus Senate Executive Committee) has decided to extend grading options for students by allowing credit/no credit grading for all courses approved in the Spring semester to extend into Fall 2020 semester.

An email will be sent to advisors and faculty, and to students by the Registrar explaining the process to select credit/no credit grading, along with some important points they should consider before converting to credit/no credit.

Advisors and Faculty Email:

This communication is being sent with specific information for faculty and advising staff.

  • Credit/No Credit Grading Explanation (as taken from the current UIS catalog): Credit is awarded under this option to undergraduate work that represents a grade of C or better (grades of C- will not be accepted) or to graduate work that represents a grade of B or better (grades of B- will not be accepted). For lesser work, a grade of NC is recorded on the transcript. Courses taken for credit/no credit are not included in calculating the cumulative grade point average.
  • Grading: The process faculty will follow when submitting their grades will not change due to the expansion of credit/no credit grading. Faculty will submit the letter grade a student has earned and (if the student has selected credit/no credit grading) that grade will be converted based upon the policy above to either a grade of CR or NC.
  • Grading Deadline: The deadline by which all full-term and last-half grades must be submitted to the Office of Records and Registration will remain Noon on Wednesday, December 16.

The deadline for students to withdraw or change grading option for one or more full-term or last-half courses is Friday, November 20 and no changes will be allowed after that date. Please direct any questions to the Office of Records and Registration by email (registrar@uis.edu) or phone (217/206-6174).

Student Email:

Those who are considering taking advantage of credit/no credit grading should note the following:

  1. Students should consult with their academic advisor(s) if they have any concerns about how this change might impact them academically. Although there are no UIS policies against the use of credit/no credit grading, individual programs can limit the number of hours earned under the credit/no credit option.
  2. Students are not required to alter their current grading mode. Those who choose to select credit/no credit grading should first log into Student Self-Service to review the grading mode in place for each of their courses. An email must then be sent to the Office of Records and Registration (registrar@uis.edu) that includes the five-digit course reference number (CRN) and course prefix/number associated with each course for which a change is to be made.

Please also be aware of the following pertaining to credit/no credit grading:

  • Credit is awarded under this option to undergraduate work that represents a grade of C or better (grades of C- will not be accepted) or to graduate work that represents a grade of B or better (grades of B- will not be accepted). For lesser work, a grade of NC is recorded on the transcript. Courses taken for credit/no credit are not included in calculating the cumulative grade point average (GPA).
  • Changing to credit/no credit grading will not impact a student’s financial aid so long as all courses continue to count toward the student’s degree completion requirements. Normal financial aid satisfactory academic progress rules will continue to apply.
  • Students should be aware of the potential ramifications of selecting credit/no credit grading. These include (but are not limited to) the following:
    • Undergraduate Dean’s List: Students must complete at least eight graded semester hours (this does not include hours graded as credit/no credit) and have no incomplete grades awarded to be considered for the Dean’s List.
    • Academic Standing: Students currently on academic probation who select credit/no credit grading for all courses will remain on probation, as courses taken for credit/no credit do not impact GPA.
    • Course Transferability: Students planning to transfer to or earn advanced degrees from other colleges/universities should check with those institutions to verify that credit/no credit grading will be accepted.

The deadline to withdraw or change grading option for one or more full-term or last-half courses is Friday, April 24 and no changes will be allowed after that date. Please direct any questions to the Office of Records and Registration by email (registrar@uis.edu) or phone (217/206-6174).