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UHD Undergraduate Policies - Grading System and Standards

Academic Honesty

The Academic Honesty Code is embraced by all members of the University of Houston-Downtown academic community and is an essential element of the institution’s academic credibility. The Honesty Code states "We will be honest in all our academic activities and will not tolerate dishonesty." The purpose of the Academic Honesty Policy is to deal with alleged violations of the Honesty Code in a fair and consistent manner. The policy is administered jointly by students and faculty. It is each student's responsibility to read and understand the Academic Honesty Policy. It may be found in the Student Handbook (


Grading System

The following grades are included in the calculation of grade point averages:

Grade Grad Points
A Superior 4.0
B Above Average 3.0
C Average 2.0
D Below Average 1.0
F Failure 0.0

The following grades are not included in the calculation of grade point averages:

A* Non-credit grade
B* Non-credit grade
C* Non-credit grade
I Incomplete
IP In Progress
Aud Audit
S Satisfactory (passing)
U Unsatisfactory (not passing)
W Withdraw


I (Incomplete)
An incomplete grade is given only when an unforeseen emer­gency prevents a student from completing the course work and only with the instructor’s approval. A grade of I will be changed to a passing grade if the missing work is completed satisfactori­ly by the deadline set by the instructor but no later than the end of the long semester immediately following the term in which the grade was received. An incomplete grade that is not removed by this deadline becomes an F. Repetition of a course for which an incomplete grade was received does not affect resolution of the original grade. An incomplete grade earned in a student’s graduating semester is computed as an F in determining grade point average.

IP (In Progress)
The grade of IP may be given in some developmental courses.  In the calculation of grade point average, a grade of IP is treated as a W. To receive credit for a course in which an IP was assigned, a student must register for the course again and earn a passing grade.

S (Satisfactory)
The grade of S may be earned in field experience courses and cer­tain other courses. Credit received with a grade of S is not part of the grade point average calculation.


W (Withdrawal from Courses)
Students will not receive a grade for a course if they drop   the course by the Official Day of Record (see Academic Calendar).

Students automatically receive a grade of W for any course they  drop after the Official Day of Record up to the drop/withdrawal deadline as listed in the online Academic Calendar. 


Official Day of Record and drop/withdrawal deadlines are published in the University Calendar online at and may be found in the Registration & Information Bulletin.


Class days are defined as days on which the university normally has one or more classes scheduled; not the days for which an individual student is scheduled for his/her particular classes. For purposes of determining academic calendar dates, class days during the Fall, Spring, May and Winter terms are Monday through Friday while class days during a summer term are Monday through Thursday.


Additional grading system information  applicable to graduate students  is pub­lished in the specific master’s degree handbook-.


Grade Point Average (GPA)

The grade point average is a measure of a student’s academic achievement. Grade point averages are computed by multiply­ing the grade point value by the number of credit hours in each course, and then dividing the sum of all grade points obtained by the total number of hours attempted. The following formula represents the method of computing grade point average:

Total Number of Grade Points    Total Number of Semester Hours

=  Grade Point Average


The number of grade points earned for each course equals the hour credit value of the course multiplied by the points awarded for grades received. Grades of I, S, U, IP and grades marked with an asterisk (*) in the table above are not counted in the cal­culation of the grade point average, except for graduation. Grades of I will be calculated as F grades in determining grade point average for graduation.


In calculating the Grade Point Average (GPA) to determine honors for students who have earned all their credits at UHD, the UHD GPA, as it appears in the student record system, is used. For students who have completed some portion of their college work at other institutions, the UHD GPA is combined proportionately with the GPAs earned at those other institutions to determine eligibility for honors.

Undergraduate students must meet a graduation requirement of a minimum 2.0 grade point average calculated on all grades earned at UHD. Some departments may specify more stringent requirements, such as a 2.5 grade point average in the major or a 2.5 grade point average in all upper-level courses.


Graduate students must meet a graduation requirement of a minimum 3.0 grade point average.


Appeal of Grades
Any grade which a student believes to be in error should be appealed, first to the instructor, then to the appropriate depart­ment chair, and finally to the appropriate dean. If an appeal is not made within one calendar year after the close of the semes­ter in which the grade was received, the grade will be consid­ered final and no appeal is allowed.


Dean’s List

The Dean’s List recognizes students who have achieved superior academic performance during the fall or spring semester. To be included on the Dean’s List for a specific semester, a student must, during that semester, complete at least nine semester hours of college-level work, earn at least a 3.5 grade point average, and receive no grade of I or F. The Dean’s List is published by each college at the end of each fall and spring semester.


Grades for Repeated Courses
Effective Spring 1994, when a course is repeated, only the most recent grade, even if it is lower than the original grade, will be used in computing the grade point average. This excludes courses repeated prior to Spring 1994.


Graduation with Honors

Students who complete bachelor’s degree requirements with exceptionally high grade point averages receive degrees with honors.

  • a cumulative grade point average of 3.75-4.00 graduate summa cum laude,
  • a cumulative grade point average of 3.50-3.74 is required for magna cum laude.
  • a grade point average of 3.25-3.49 is needed to graduate cum laude.


In the computation of this average, all courses attempted at UHD are counted, including courses repeated, failed and passed, but excluding courses with grades of S, W or IP.


For candidates who complete some portion of their college work at other institutions, the cumulative grade point average of all work attempted at UHD and the grade point average of all college work is computed; the lower of the two averages is used as the basis for determining honors.


Students not eligible for cum laude, magna cum laude or summa cum laude honors may be eligible for College Honors. Students who have earned a GPA of 3.50 or greater in their last 60 hours attempted at UHD, including at least 30 upper-level hours, are eligible to receive the designation, “College Honors.”


Academic Probation and Suspension

Transfer students who were placed on Academic Suspension at the most recent institution attended, prior to applying to UHD, will not be offered Admissions.


Academic probation is a warning to the student that his or her aca­demic record has been unsatisfactory. A student who is not making satisfactory progress toward meeting graduation requirements may be placed on academic suspension if this record does not improve. A student is placed on academic probation at the end of any term in which his or her cumulative GPA falls below the specified mini­mum cumulative GPA shown below. The cumulative GPA for aca­demic probation and suspension is computed on all grades earned at UHD. Grades of I, IP, S or W are not counted.


Semester hours

Minimum Required Cumulative GPA





60 or more, or upon
declaration of a major



Suspension means that a student is ineligible to register or remain in classes. Students on academic probation will be suspended at the end of any term in which their cumulative GPA falls below the specified mini­mum cumulative GPA unless they earn a minimum GPA of 2.0 in that term.


A student’s first academic suspension will become effective at the beginning of the next term and will remain in effect for that term only. The student may be granted earlier readmission at the discretion of the student’s academic dean or the dean’s des­ignated representative.


The second time a student is placed on academic suspension, the length of the suspension will be indefinite. The student may be con­sidered for readmission after one term and only upon appeal to the students’ academic dean or the dean’s designated representative.


The third time a student is placed on academic suspension, the suspension will be permanent. Any appeals for readmission fol­lowing a permanent suspension must be initiated at the aca­demic dean’s office. The final decision rests with the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost.


Academic Amnesty

After a four-year absence, a student returning to UHD may petition his or her academic dean for academic amnesty. To be eligible, the student must not have attended any institution of higher education for the four-year period immediately preceding readmission to UHD. In addition, the student also must complete 24 semester credit hours with a minimum grade point average of 2.5 following readmission. The amnesty provision applies only to the application of credit toward a degree and computation of the student’s grade point average. No grades on the student’s permanent record are altered or deleted.


If academic amnesty is granted, all courses with grades of F or D earned prior to readmission are ignored in applying credit toward fulfillment of degree requirements and in future computations of the student’s grade point average. A student granted academic amnesty relinquishes all rights to graduation with honors and any other academic recognition based on grade point average.






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Last updated or reviewed on 8/28/13

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