Grades and Grading Policy


The overall policy of the University is that students are responsible for attending all class meetings for courses for which they are registered. Each instructor determines the specific attendance policy for the course and makes it known to students through the course syllabus and in class during the first week of classes. Instructors may assign a lower letter grade for failure to adhere to the attendance policy.Students sometimes miss classes because of ill health, family emergency, or other reason beyond their control. It is the student’s responsibility to notify instructors of the reasons for missing class and to make arrangements for making up missed work. If absences are extensive, even for legitimate reasons, it may be impossible to meet the objectives of the course. In such instances the instructor may assign a grade of Incomplete.

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University Authorized Absences

Students occasionally miss a class because of participation in an authorized, off-campus official function of the university (e.g., varsity athletics, band, drama, etc.). Instructors should allow students the opportunity to make up work missed as a result of authorized absences. Students must notify instructors in advance of such absences, and should provide them authorized-absence slips signed by the appropriate director or academic dean.

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Final Examinations

The final examination should count no more than one-third of the course grade, although exceptions may be made by the instructor on consultation with the chairperson of the department in which the course is offered. Instructors are requested to announce to their respective classes at or near the last recitation period the time and place of each final examination. Students who are scheduled for more than three final examinations in one day may have an examination rescheduled. No examinations of any kind may be scheduled during the last week of classes, except by permission of the appropriate Associate Dean or Director. A final examination may be scheduled only during final exam week. If a final is not planned, and the instructor wishes to schedule a prelim covering the last weeks of the course, this prelim must be given during final exam week.

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Athletic Events during Final Examination Period

The University of Maine will not schedule athletic events during final examination periods in December and May. The President, in consultation with the Executive Vice President and Provost, determines whether or not athletic teams will participate in postseason tournaments during final examination week.

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Grading System

The University of Maine uses a letter-grade system ranging from A to F. Faculty members have the option of adding + (no A+) and – grades to the basic letter grades, but such fine distinctions may be inappropriate for many courses. There is no University-wide equivalence between percentage grades and letter grades. Each instructor makes these determinations according to the grading system described in the course syllabus.

 I, for “Incomplete.”

This grade means that, in consultation with the student, the instructor has postponed the assignment of a final grade to allow the student to complete specific work not turned in before the end of the semester. Instructors assign the “I” grade only when they are persuaded that events beyond the student’s control prevented the completion of assigned work on time and when the student has participated in more than 50% of the class. If the incomplete work is not submitted within the time allotted by the faculty member, the grade will automatically be changed to an “F” grade. Students receiving an “I” grade are not allowed to re-register for the same course until the incomplete has been made up or converted to an “F” grade. A student receiving an “I” grade may not make up missed work by sitting-in on the course the next time it is taught.

Upon selecting the “I” grade during the grade input process, the instructor will be prompted to provide information related to the incomplete grade including:

1. A description of the assignment(s) needed to complete the course requirements and have the “I” replaced by a regular grade.

2. Grade reflecting quality of the work submitted to date.

3. The date by which work is to be completed. The maximum time allowed is 140 days from the end of the semester in which the class was held. The “end of the semester” is defined as the final day that grades may be submitted. [Exceptions to this rule are rare and allowed only with the formal approval of the faculty member, the faculty member’s department chairperson or school director, and the associate dean of the faculty member’s college. The formal process for requesting extensions requires the completion of the Extension for Incomplete form. The extension is not to exceed one year from the original end of the semester in which the course was taken.]

Once the grade is posted the details of the Incomplete Contract are available to the student in MaineStreet.

 L, Failure for lack of participation.

This grade indicates that a student participated in less than 50% of the class, but did not formally withdraw from the course. This grade counts the same as an F.

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