March 30, 2020
Over the past several weeks, the faculty and administration have heard from many of you asking for more flexibility regarding grading for this semester. In these extraordinary circumstances in which we find ourselves, other than the safety and well-being of the entire HWS community, maintaining academic continuity has been our primary goal. We want to make sure that you stay on track to achieve your academic objectives.
After consultation with faculty leadership and President Jacobsen, I have authorized the Registrar to make the following changes to grading for the Spring 2020 semester only:
- Each faculty member will grade students with the grading system that each student currently has in place for the course, and submit those via PeopleSoft at the end of the Spring 2020 semester.
- The Classes of 2021, 2022 and 2023 (i.e., current juniors, sophomores and first year students) will have until the end of the second week of Fall 2020 (September 4, 2020) to change posted letter grades to CR/DCR/NCR grades.
- In order to allow for the processing of degrees, the Classes of 2020 (current seniors) will have until 5 p.m. on May 18, 2020 to change the grading system for their courses from letter grades to CR/DCR/NCR, with the approval of their academic advisor. Note that the record date for graduation will remain May 17, 2020.
- There will be no maximum limit on how many Spring 2020 class grades any one student can change to CR/DCR/NCR.
- Grades from the Spring 2020 semester that are changed to CR/DCR/NCR will not count toward the maximum number of CR/DCR/NCR grades a student can have during their time at HWS.
- For this semester only, students who are more than two credits behind in their progress to graduation can withdraw from a course with the approval of their Dean.
- For this semester only, the Colleges will allow students who are repeating a course to opt for a CR/DCR/NCR grade.
Details about the temporary grading system can be found on the COVID-19 webpage.
Declaring CR/DCR/NCR or withdrawing from a class is a personal decision and should only be done after careful consideration. Please consult with the faculty member teaching the course, your academic adviser, your dean, or all three to determine the best course of action that takes into account your academic trajectory and your career and graduate school goals. It is my hope that this one-time change in the grading policy will help all students better navigate this situation.
As we move into the second week of learning after Spring Break, let me also commend you for your extraordinary adoption of remote learning. I’ve been incredibly impressed by the ways in which students have adapted, despite the physical, emotional and spiritual toll this pandemic is having on us all. If you have any questions about remote learning not covered in the Student Resource Guide or if you have any concerns at all, please reach out to your dean, your academic adviser, the Center for Teaching and Learning, or to me at any time. I can be reached through the Office of Academic and Faculty Affairs at OAFA@hws.edu or by calling (315) 781-3304.
We may not be physically together, but we are here for you. Reach out to us and let us know what we can do to help.
Provost and Dean of Faculty