Undergraduate Catalog

Grading Policies

Credits, Honor Points, and Grade Point Average

Academic credit is expressed in semester hours. Honor points are assigned to the following letter grades and are used to determine the academic standing of the student:

  • Each credit hour of A: 4.00 honor points
  • Each credit hour of A-: 3.67 honor points
  • Each credit hour of B+: 3.33 honor points
  • Each credit hour of B: 3.00 honor points
  • Each credit hour of B-: 2.67 honor points
  • Each credit hour of C+: 2.33 honor points
  • Each credit hour of C: 2.00 honor points
  • Each credit hour of C-: 1.67 honor points
  • Each credit hour of D+: 1.33 honor points
  • Each credit hour of D: 1.00 honor point
  • Each credit hour of D-: 0.67 honor points
  • Each credit hour of F, FN, or FW: 0.00 honor points

The symbols I, W, X, UX, P, S, N, and U do not carry honor point values.

The grade point average is the total of all honor points divided by the total of all credit hours attempted and graded using honor point bearing letter grades. An audited course may not be repeated later for credit.

Dean’s List (Semester and Summer Session Honors)

To be eligible for semester honors, a student must be in good standing, earn a minimum of 12 hours of credit in courses graded using honor point bearing letter grades, and earn a 3.60 average for the semester.

To be eligible for Summer session honors, a student must be in good standing, earn a minimum of six hours of credit in courses graded using honor point bearing letter grades, and earn a 3.60 average for the Summer session.

Grade Change

When an error has been made in computing or reporting a student’s course grade, the reported grade may be changed. The request for a change should be reported to the Registrar within three weeks after the next term begins.

The student initiates the procedure for the change by contacting the course instructor. The instructor submits a Grade Change Request. The Request must be approved by the department chair.

Upon receipt of a valid Grade Change Request, the Registrar will change the student’s permanent record. Notification of the change will be emailed to the student and the student’s academic advisor.


A temporary symbol of I (Incomplete) for a course may be given only when students, due to circumstances beyond their control, have been unable to complete the course requirements within the official limits of the term. The extenuating circumstances must be documented to the faculty member’s satisfaction. Students and faculty members are encouraged to use the optional Request for an Incomplete form to document expectations for successful completion of remaining course requirements. The Incomplete must be replaced with a grade by the end of the ninth week of the next semester in which the student is enrolled. If the student is not enrolled during the next two semesters, the Incomplete must be replaced with a permanent grade no later than one calendar year of the Incomplete being assigned. If the Incomplete is not replaced by these deadlines, it will automatically become an F. For S/U graded courses, the Incomplete will become a U.

The permanent grade which replaces the Incomplete will be used to determine the student’s academic status and progress toward the degree. Any change in the student’s academic status resulting from the assignment of the permanent grade becomes effective at the time of the change from the Incomplete to the permanent grade. Western Illinois University’s full Incomplete Grade Policy is available at wiu.edu/policies/incomplete.php.

Pass/Fail System

The Pass/Fail grading option is open to all undergraduate students in good academic standing. Undergraduate courses open to the Pass/Fail option carry the following limitations:

  1. Only courses that will be used as general electives may be taken Pass/Fail. (No General Education, major, or minor requirements can be fulfilled with a P/F course.)
  2. Students wishing to register for a course on a Pass/Fail basis must indicate this option when registering.
  3. A student may change from Pass/Fail to regular grading or from regular grading to Pass/Fail up until the end of the scheduled program change period.
  4. Students withdrawing from a course taken on a Pass/Fail basis follow the usual withdrawal procedures.
  5. Final letter grades of D- or above are recorded as pass (P) by the Registrar, and the student receives the credit hours for the course. However, this will not affect the student’s grade point average. A “P” becomes the official designation for the course and may not be changed. Students wishing to transfer to another college or university are cautioned to determine the transfer school’s policies regarding the transferability of P grades. An F in a course taken for Pass/Fail is recorded as such and affects the grade point average accordingly.
  6. A student may earn a maximum of 12 semester hours of credit in Pass/Fail to be applied toward general electives within the graduation requirement.
  7. Instructors will not be informed as to which students have elected Pass/Fail in their courses, but will evaluate all students by the regular University grading system.

Permanent Grades

There are 14 permanent grades which indicate the quality of a student’s work in a course. Eleven of these indicate successful completion of the course: A (highest), A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, and D- (lowest). The remaining three permanent grades (F, FN, and FW) indicate failure to complete the course successfully: F indicates failure to meet the academic requirements of the course, FN indicates failure because the student never attended/accessed/participated, and FW indicates failure because the student stopped attending class or completing coursework.

Several other symbols may appear on student transcripts. The symbol P indicates that the student has passed a course taken under the Pass/Fail option. The symbols S (Satisfactory) and U (Unsatisfactory) are assigned in courses in which a student receives credit for hours earned but does not receive honor (grade) points. The symbol W is entered on the transcript when the student withdraws from a course or is withdrawn from a course as the result of action by the Council on Admission, Graduation, and Academic Standards (CAGAS). The symbol N (never attended) is entered on the transcript when CAGAS grants a withdrawal from a course because the student never attended and did not complete any coursework.

The symbol X denotes that a course has been audited; the symbol UX denotes an unsatisfactory audit, given when the student has not attended a sufficient number of classes. An audited course may not be taken for credit at a later date.


All new matriculating students pay a $15 non-refundable transcript fee which entitles the student to unlimited hard-copy transcripts. Upon written request of the student, the Office of the Registrar issues a transcript of a student’s record. Transcripts are not issued for persons under financial and administrative obligation to Western Illinois University. Western Illinois University follows the condition set forth in the General Education Provisions Act of 1974 (as amended in 1976).

Withdrawal from Courses or from the University

The symbol W on a student transcript indicates official withdrawal from a course after the published last day to delete. A student may withdraw from a course or totally withdraw from the University during the first ten weeks of a semester. After the first ten weeks, a student may not drop individual courses or withdraw from the University. For academic courses of an irregular length, the withdrawal date shall be 0.6 of the length of the course. If the student has been found guilty of academic dishonesty and the penalty of F (Fail) is assigned, a W cannot be granted.