Academic Information

Credit and Grade Information

Unit Credit (Credit Hours)

Credit is earned at Ithaca College in credit hours as measured by the Carnegie unit. The Carnegie unit is defined as one hour of classroom instruction and two hours of assignments outside the classroom, for a period of 15 weeks for each unit (credit).

Class Determination

Students are classified as freshmen, sophomores, and so on, on the following basis (earned credits from all sources):








90 or more


Incompletes are given only when a student is doing satisfactory work but cannot complete the course for a reason not related to academic performance (i.e., medical, family emergency). The incomplete must be requested by the student together with a presentation of the legitimate reasons that justify the request. Terms for the completion of the course are to be determined by the faculty member and will include the following: specific assignments with criteria for assessment and the due date (no later than the end of the following semester). If no complete grade is received by the due date, a grade of F is recorded on the transcript. Undergraduate students may not graduate from Ithaca College with an incomplete recorded on the academic transcript.

For "incomplete" deadlines for seniors, see the relevant section under "Graduation and Program Regulations."
Graduation and Program Regulations

Repeating a Course

A student who passes a course with a D+ or less may repeat the course only once, unless the student is in a degree program that requires that the course be passed with a grade of C- or better. All grades are counted when the GPA is calculated, but credit toward graduation requirements is granted only once. Failed courses may be repeated as often as necessary to meet a graduation requirement, but all attempts are counted in the cumulative GPA. Physical activity, leisure, and safety (PALS) courses may be repeated on a space-available basis, but not for credit. Students who receive a C- in major courses that require a C grade or better are allowed to repeat the course as departmental graduation requirements dictate.

Grading System

The acceptable grades and corresponding points for GPA calculations are as follows. All grades except P, I, S, W, NG,S and DG are used in calculating GPAs.



4.00 (excellent)






3.00 (good)






2.00 (satisfactory)












Not calculated


Not calculated


Not calculated


Not calculated


Not calculated

DG Not calculated

Satisfactory/D/Fail (S/D/F) Option

The intent of the satisfactory/D/fail (S/D/F) option is to encourage exploration and experimentation in curricular areas in which the student may have had little or no previous experience. Students may rescind the S/D/F election and opt for a regular letter grade until the end of the 10th week of classes.

  • Each undergraduate may elect S/D/F grading in no more than four courses in his/her bachelor's degree program.

  • A student may elect only one S/D/F course per semester.

  • Any course for the major or minor must be taken for a letter grade unless the course is offered only on a pass/fail basis. In this context, required courses are those that are specified as such by number and title, or are selected to fulfill a specified number of department credits. Departments may set additional limits but cannot grant exceptions to the above stipulations.

  • To exercise the S/D/F option, a student must complete an S/D/F option form. This form must be submitted to the registrar by the end of the third week of classes in the semester in which the S/D/F credit is being taken.

  • A student may rescind the S/D/F election and opt for a regular letter grade in a course until the end of the 10th week of classes (the same deadline for withdrawing from a course).

  • Any S/D/F election that is rescinded before the end of the 10th week of classes does not count toward the total of four courses.

  • Students who are registered for S/D/F and earn a grade below C- will have that grade (D+, D, D-, or F) calculated into their GPA. Grades of S are not calculated into their cumulative GPA.

  • Students planning to transfer to another school or department, or to enter a graduate or professional school, are reminded that their admission may be affected by S/D/F coursework.

  • The S/D/F option does not apply to pass/fail courses.

Grade Changes

Grades as filed with the Office of the Registrar are final except where an error of judgment has occurred or an error has been made in computation or transcription. Shortly after the close of each semester, currently enrolled students can access their final grade report using the student information system website. Any changes to the report must be arranged no later than two weeks from the date when classes begin in the succeeding semester; hence, each student is advised to review each term report carefully and promptly. Before the registrar can amend any record, the change must have been approved by the faculty member and the dean of the school in which the course is offered.

Policy on Grade Disputes

Grade disputes should be resolved directly between the individual faculty member and the student. If that is not possible, the department chair and/or dean may intervene for purposes of mediation. Failing resolution of the matter at the school level, the student may petition the provost as described under "Students' Right to Petition." The final resolution of the dispute will be made by the provost. As a general principle, the authority to change a grade rests with the individual faculty member. Exceptions made by the provost occur only for the most compelling reasons.
Students' Right to Petition

Credit from External Sources

Transfer from another institution -- A student who transfers to Ithaca College from another accredited college or university may be granted credit for all courses satisfactorily completed with a grade of C- or better, except that transfer students must in all cases meet the same requirements as Ithaca College students in a given program. For example, if a particular course in the major area of study must be passed with a grade of C or better, transfer students will be required to meet that standard. It is the transfer student's responsibility to request that a transcript be sent to the Ithaca College director of admission directly from the institution. Credits accepted toward an academic program are determined by the student's academic dean. Credits are transferable; grades are not. All credits are converted into semester credit hours if they are not already so designated.

Occasional study at another institution (semester or summer) -- Credit for occasional courses taken at another institution is accepted by Ithaca College under the following conditions:

  1. The student has successfully petitioned for preliminary approval of the credit prior to taking the courses.
  2. The other institution has regional and/or appropriate professional accreditation (confirmation is needed from the Ithaca College registrar on this point).
  3. The courses in question are not among those that must be taken at Ithaca College to fulfill major requirements (refer to specific program listings and consult with adviser for information on this).
  4. An appropriate final course grade is earned as set out under "Transfer from Another Institution" above.

The petition for preliminary approval requires the consent of the student's adviser, the chair(s) of the department(s) to which the credit for a required course relates, and the dean. On completion of the courses, the student must have the official transcript sent to the registrar's office.

This credit is counted toward graduation requirements, but grades are not counted for the student's GPA at Ithaca College.

Seniors are reminded that their last 30 credits must be taken at Ithaca College. Thus, students who wish to take at another institution courses that would fall within the last 30 credit hours must petition for a waiver of that requirement and petition for approval of the courses. See the "Senior Credit Requirement" section.
Senior Credit Requirement

Credit by examination -- Ithaca College, at the discretion of the student's dean or program director, accepts credit from other established sources, such as Advanced Placement (AP), College Level Examination Program (CLEP), General and Subject Examinations, New York ACT, and educational experiences in the armed services. Test results should be sent to the Office of the Registrar. All credits are converted to semester credit hours, if they are not already so designated.