General Catalog

University Grading System

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Undergraduate grading system

UW Bothell uses a numerical grading system. Instructors may report grades from 4.0 to 0.7 in 0.1 increments and the grade 0.0. The number 0.0 is assigned for failing work or unofficial withdrawal. Grades in the range 0.6 to 0.1 may not be assigned. Grades reported in this range are converted by the Office of the Registrar to 0.0.

Numerical grades may be considered equivalent to letter grades as follows:

Undergraduate grading scale

Letter Grade Numerical Grade
A 4.0 - 3.9
A- 3.8 - 3.5
B+ 3.4 - 3.2
B 3.1 - 2.9
B- 2.8 - 2.5
C+ 2.4 - 2.2
C 2.1 - 1.9
C- 1.8-1.5
D+ 1.4 - 1.2
D 1.1 - 0.9
D- 0.8 - 0.7 (Lowest passing grade)
E 0.0 (Failure or unofficial withdrawal; no credit earned)

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Graduate grading system

In reporting grades for graduate students, units that offer graduate degrees use the system described herein. Grades are entered as numbers, the possible values beginning at 4.0 and decreasing by one-tenth increments until 1.7 is reached. Grades below 1.7 are recorded as 0.0 by the Registrar and do not count toward residency, total credit count, or grade and credit requirements. A minimum grade of 2.7 is required in each course that is counted toward a graduate degree. A minimum GPA of 3.00 is required for graduation.

Correspondence between number grades and letter grades is as follows:

Graduate Grading Scale

Letter Grade Numerical Grade
A 4.0 - 3.9
A- 3.8 - 3.5
B+ 3.4 - 3.1
B 3.0 - 2.9
B- 2.8 - 2.5
C+ 2.4 - 2.1
C 2.0 - 1.7
E 1.6 - 0.0

Note on numerical grades

Of the minimum number of credits required for a graduate degree, a graduate student must show numerical grades in at least 18 quarter hours of course work taken at the UW. These numerical grades may be earned in approved 400-level and 500-level courses.


The student may petition the Dean of the Graduate School to modify the procedures described above. The petition should be accompanied by comments and recommendations from the graduate program coordinator or supervisory committee chairperson.

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Continuation or termination of students in the Graduate School

Admission to the Graduate School allows students to continue graduate study and research at the University of Washington only as long as they maintain satisfactory performance and progress toward completion of their graduate degree program. The definition of satisfactory performance and progress toward completion of the degree program may differ among degree offering units; therefore, it is imperative that each graduate unit have these requirements in writing and distribute them to each graduate student. The following information should be included:

  • General expectations for graduate student performance within the academic unit, including, but not limited to, required coursework and length of time allowed for completion of various phases of the program.
  • The identification of persons in departments, colleges, schools, and groups who are responsible for both the evaluation of graduate student progress and for informing students about the fulfillment of these requirements, and when such evaluations are to be made.
  • Criteria by which performance and progress are to be evaluated, including areas which may or may not be negotiated.
  • Under what circumstances the graduate unit will recommend to the Dean of the Graduate School the alteration of a student's standing--i.e., conditions that warrant probation and final probation (see Recommended Guidelines), and length of time the academic unit will tolerate unsatisfactory performance and progress.
  • Procedures for appealing evaluations recommended to the Graduate School by the graduate program.

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Other letter grades

Definitions for the following letter grades that may also be used:

Letter Grade Description
CR: Credit Awarded Credit in a course offered on a credit/no-credit (C/NC) basis only or in courses numbered 600, 601, 700, 750 and 800. The minimum performance level required for a CR grade is determined, and the grade is awarded directly by the instructor. CR is not computed in GPA calculations.
NC: Credit Not Awarded Credit not awarded in a course offered on a credit/no-credit (C/NC) basis only or in courses numbered 600, 601, 700, 750 and 800. The grade is awarded directly by the instructor and is not included in GPA calculations.
S: Satisfactory

Satisfactory grade for courses taken on a satisfactory/not-satisfactory (S/NS) basis. An S grade is automatically converted from a numerical grade of 2.0 or above for undergraduate classes and 2.7 or above for graduate classes. The grade S may not be assigned directly by the instructor, but is a grade conversion by the Office of the Registrar. Typically, undergraduate students may elect this option only for free electives and cannot be used to satisfy a university, college or department course requirement unless the quarter is deemed as one of extraordinary circumstances where courses will count towards prerequisites, major and degree if the student earns an S grades. With the approval of their program advisor, graduate students may elect to be graded S/NS in any numerically graded course for which they are eligible. A maximum of 25 credits of S/NS grades may be applied to an undergraduate degree. S is not computed in GPA calculations. For graduate students, see an academic advisor.

Read about late grading options during Extraordinary Circumstances Quarters.

NS: Not Satisfactory

Not Satisfactory grade for courses taken on a satisfactory/not-satisfactory (S/NS) basis. A grade less than 2.0 for undergraduate classes and 2.7 for graduate classes is converted to NS. NS is not included in GPA calculations. No credit is awarded for courses in which an NS grade is received.

Read about late grading options during Extraordinary Circumstances Quarters.

X: No Grade An instructor may submit a grade of "X" for a student if the student's grade is not available when grades for the classes are submitted. The student does not receive credit for the course until a passing grade is turned in. In addition, if an instructor has not turned in any grade by the time grade reports are printed or at any time after, an "X" will be recorded until the grade is submitted. The GPA is not affected and no credit is granted.
I: Incomplete

"Incomplete" given at the discretion of the faculty only when a student has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work until within two weeks of the end of the quarter and has furnished proof satisfactory to the instructor that the work cannot be completed because of illness or other circumstances beyond the student’s control. To obtain credit for the course, an undergraduate student must convert an Incomplete into a passing grade no later than the last day of the next quarter. The student should never re-register for the course as a means of removing the Incomplete.

For undergraduate students, an Incomplete not made up by the end of the next quarter is converted to a grade of 0.0. However, an instructor can assign a grade other than 0.0 even if the student does not complete the assigned course work. The Incomplete is not removed from the permanent record and appears on the transcript with the completed grade. An instructor may approve an extension of the Incomplete removal deadline by contacting the Office of the Registrar no later than the last day of the quarter following the quarter in which the Incomplete grade was assigned. Extensions, which may be granted for up to three additional quarters, must be received before the Incomplete has been converted into a failing grade. In no case can an Incomplete received by an undergraduate be converted to a passing grade after the lapse of one year.

For graduate students, an Incomplete grade does not automatically convert to 0.0 but remains a permanent part of the student’s record. To obtain credit for the course, a student must successfully complete the work and the instructor must submit a grade. In no case can an Incomplete received by a graduate student be converted to a passing grade after a lapse of two years or more.

W: Official Withdrawal Official Withdrawal or drop from a course from the third through the seventh week of the quarter for undergraduates. A number designating the week of the quarter is recorded with the “W” when a course is dropped. It is not computed in GPA calculations.
RD: Registrar Drop "RD" is assigned when a student is allowed to withdraw from a course(s) after the 14th calendar day of the quarter (click here to learn more about Current Quarter Drop and Former Quarter Drop policies). It does not impact cumulative GPA or academic standing.
N: Hyphenated Course N: Indicates that the student is making satisfactory progress and a final grade will be given at the end of the quarter the work is completed. Used only for hyphenated courses (courses not completed in one quarter) and courses numbered 600, 601, 700, 750 or 800. An N grade carries with it no credit or grade until a regular grade is assigned.

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Grade-point average

The cumulative grade-point average is based solely on courses taken in residence at the University of Washington. 

Computation of grade-point average

The grade-point average for graduation is computed by dividing the total cumulative grade points by the total credits attempted for courses taken in residence at the University.  Grade points are calculated by multiplying the number of credits by the numeric value of the grade for each course.  The sum of the grade points is then divided by the total credits attempted.  Courses elected on an S/NS basis are counted as follows: Satisfactory grades are printed on the permanent record as an S and do not count in the quarterly or cumulative grade-point average, but they do count as credits earned toward graduation.  Not-satisfactory grades, NS, do not count in the quarterly and cumulative grade-point averages and do not count as credits earned toward graduation.

Example One
Course Credits Grade Grade Points
BIS 498 3 0.0 0.0
  BIS 300   5 2.9 14.5
   BIS 343    5 3.2 16.0
  • Total credits earned toward graduation is 10
  • Total graded credits attempted is 13
  • Grade-point average (GPA): 30.5 / 13 = 2.35
  • The total graded credits attempted, not the credits earned toward graduation, are used in computing the grade-point average.
Example 2
Course Credits Grade Grade points
BIS 325 5 2.3 11.5
BIS 463 5 2.9 14.5
BIS 313 5 I 0.0
  • Total credits earned toward graduation is 10
  • Total graded credits attempted is 15
  • Grade-point average(GPA): 26.0 / 10 = 2.60
  • The student attempted 15 credits, but only 10 are graded, because the I (Incomplete) is not computed in the grade-point average. If the work in BIS 313 is not made up by the end of the quarter, the "I" will convert to a numeric grade of 0.0, and the grade-point average will be recomputed. When the grade of 0.0 is received, it is computed in the grade-point average, but no credit is awarded toward graduation.

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Repeating courses

With the approval of the academic department offering the course, an undergraduate may repeat a course once. Both the original grade and the second grade are computed in the GPA but credit is allowed only once. Veterans receiving benefits must receive approval from the Office of Special Services before a course is repeated.

Courses considered to have been taken once include any with a numerical grade or those with grades of I, CR/NC, or S/NS. Withdrawn or dropped courses and courses with X or no grade reported will not count as the first taking of a course. If you are currently enrolled in a course, registration for the same course in the following quarter will be counted as a repeat registration.

Departments may restrict undergraduates from repeat registration into courses. Restrictions may include:

  • Only allowing registration after Period I
  • Only allowing registration after the quarter has begun, or
  • Requiring an Entry Code for a repeat registration

A second repeat (taking a class for a third time [or more]) cannot be done using MyUW. A second repeat requires the department to register you into the course. Grades in the third or subsequent takings will not be included in the grade-point average (GPA).

Graduate students may repeat any course. Both the first and second grades will be included in the cumulative GPA. Subsequent grades will not be included, but will appear on the permanent record. The number of credits earned in the course will apply toward degree requirements only once.

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Grading procedures


Change of grade

Except in case of error, no instructor may change a grade that he or she has turned in to the Registrar. A student who finds administrative omissions or errors in a grade report must make application to the Registrar for a review, not later that the last day of the student's next quarter in residence, but in no case after a lapse of two years. Grades used to meet graduation requirements cannot be changed after the degree has been granted. Time spent in military service is not counted as part of the two-year limitation. Students are not automatically notified of grade changes posted after the first of the quarter.

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Grade appeal procedure

A student who believes he or she has been improperly graded first discusses the matter with the instructor.  If the student is not satisfied with the instructor's explanation, the student may submit a written appeal to the dean or director of the student's academic program (or their designee) with a copy of the appeal also to the instructor.  The dean or director consults with the instructor to ensure that the evaluation of the student's performance has not been arbitrary or capricious.  Should the director believe the instructor's conduct to be arbitrary or capricious, and the instructor declines to revise the grade, the dean or director, with the approval of the voting members of his or her faculty, shall appoint an appropriate member, or members, of the faculty of that department, to evaluate the performance of the student and assign a grade.  The Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs should be informed of this action.

Once a student submits a written appeal, this document, and all subsequent actions on this appeal are recorded in written form for deposit in a department or college file.

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Grade reports

Grades are available through MyUW at the end of each quarter.

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University policy on student education records

A copy of the University's policy on a student's right to inspect his or her education records and the University's responsibility to maintain the confidentiality of such records are available at reference stations on campus (e.g., Office of the Chancellor and the Library). 

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