Grade Point Average (GPA)

Grade point averages are computed on the following grades: "A," "B," "C," "D," "F" or "I" and any pluses or minuses that appear on the record. In computing a grade point average, an "I" counts as an "F" until replaced by the earned grade. Grades of "P," "W," "NA" or "NC" are not used when computing the GPA.

Overall and Institutional GPA

A student's overall grade point average (GPA) is comprised of all work completed at the collegiate level, including work completed at The University of Alabama as well as work completed at other post secondary institutions and accepted for credit at The University of Alabama in accordance with the Transfer Credit Policy. A student's institutional GPA is comprised solely of work completed at The University of Alabama. Both the overall and institutional GPA calculations take into account all attempted work that comprise each individual GPA. All failed, repeated or otherwise insufficient coursework is used to make the calculations. 

Sample Overall/Institutional GPA Calculation

A student's overall or institutional GPA is calculated by dividing the total number of quality points earned by the total number of GPA hours. (To calculate the total number of quality points earned, refer to the chart in the Grade and Grade Points section of this catalog.) Then, take the point value (4.33, 4.0, etc) of each grade earned and multiply by the number of credit hours each course is worth. The sum total of those calculations will result in the total quality points. The sum of all credit hours used in the GPA calculation will result in the total number of GPA hours. Please note that grades of "P," W," "NA" and "NC" are not included in the GPA calculation. A cumulative grade point average of 4.0 is the highest GPA an undergraduate can receive. See below for a sample calculation:

GPA Hours Grade Quality Points
3 A 12
4 B- 10.68
3 F 0
3 C 6
3 D+ 3.99

Total Quality Points/Total GPA Hours = GPA
Example: 32.67/16 = 2.04 GPA

Major and Minor GPA

In order to graduate with a particular major or minor, a student must earn at least a 2.0 GPA in the courses required for the major or minor. However, a major or minor GPA is calculated differently than an overall or institutional GPA. The same formula of total quality points divide by total GPA hours is used, but certain instances of classes that are included in overall and institutional GPA calculation are excluded when calculating a major or minor GPA. 

A student's major GPA is calculated in the following manner:

  • Only classes currently completing major or minor requirements up to the total number of hours required for that particular major or minor.
  • Failed, repeated or otherwise insufficient attempts of classes are not used in the calculation.
  • Successfully completed classes in excess of what is required to complete the major or minor are not used in the calculation.
  • When multiple classes can be used to complete a particular requirement, the class with the best grade will be used in the calculation.
  • Both UA institutional coursework and transfer work will be used in the calculation.

Other considerations when calculating major and minor GPAs include the following:

  • Certain majors or minors may require a GPA higher than a 2.0. Always consult with your academic adviser for requirements specific to your program of study.
  • Certain programs of study calculate GPAs for specific groups of courses that do not follow the calculation method outlined above. Always consult with your academic adviser for requirements specific to your program of study.
  • Major and minor GPAs are not officially recorded on a student's transcript nor are the calculations stored in the student information system.

Sample Major/Minor GPA Calculation

The requirements for the English minor are as follows:

Requirement # Courses Hours
1 EN 205 or EN 215 3
2 EN 206, EN 207, EN 208, EN 209, EN 210, or EN 249 (or honors equivalent) 9
3 EN electives 300 or 400 level 9
Total 21

A sample of a student's coursework that could apply to the English minor:

Course Grade/Credits Applied to GPA? Reason
EN 205 A/3 Yes Applies to Requirement #1
EN 206 B/3 Yes Applies to requirement #2
EN 207 A/3 Yes Applies to requirement #2
EN 208 B/3 Yes Applies to requirement #2
EN 208 F/3 No Class was failed
EN 330 A/3 Yes Applies to requirement #3
EN 348 B/3 Yes Applies to requirement #3
EN 422 C/3 Yes Applies to requirement #3
EN 466 C-/3 No In excess of credits required in requirement #3 and lowest grade of classes that could apply

The actual calculation of the sample English minor GPA:

Course Grade Credits Quality Points
EN 205 A 3 12
EN 206 B 3 9
EN 207 A 3 12
EN 208 B 3 9
EN 330 A 3 12
EN 348 B 3 9
EN 422 C 3 6

Total Quality Points/Total Credits = Minor GPA
Example: 69/21 = 3.28     

Grades and Grade Points

Grades are awarded for University of Alabama undergraduate courses according to the following table of letter grades and values:

A+ 4.33
A 4.0
A- 3.67
B+ 3.33
B 3.0
B- 2.67
C+ 2.33
C 2.0
C- 1.67
D+ 1.33
D 1.0
D- 0.67
F 0
I Incomplete
N No Grade Reported
NC No Credit
IP In Progression
P Pass
W Withdrawn
DO Dropped Out
NA Never Attended

Policy on Grading

In undergraduate courses at The University of Alabama, passing grades are A+, A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D and D-. The F and I grades cannot be modified with a + or -. Four grade points are given for each hour of A, three grade points for each hour of B, two grade points for each hour of C and one grade point for each hour of D. The plus sign added to a grade raises the points awarded by 0.33 points per hour. A minus sign lowers the points awarded by 0.33 points. For example, each hour of C+ earns 2.33 grade points. Please refer to the grade points table for a complete listing of grades and their corresponding point values. Where departmental or other regulations require a minimum grade in a course or courses (for instance, the requirement to complete all prerequisites with grades of at least C) a minus sign shall be appended to the minimum grade. That is, a C indicates "any kind of C." The syllabus for each individual University of Alabama undergraduate course specifies the criteria upon which work in the course will be graded. NOTE: A cumulative grade point average of 4.0 is the highest GPA an undergraduate can receive.

In all freshman composition and introductory math courses, the following grades may be reported: A+, A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C- and NC (No Credit). The NC grade is not included in the computation of the student's grade point average. A grade of C- or higher is required in all freshman composition and introductory math courses and is a prerequisite for advancement to all higher level English and math courses at The University of Alabama.

Specific freshman composition and introductory math courses where a grade of NC may be reported are:

Hours
EN 101English Composition3
EN 102English Composition3
EN 103Advanced English Composition3
EN 104English Composition BUI3
EN 120English Comp I Non-Native Spkr3
EN 121English Comp II Non-Native Spk3
MATH 100Intermediate Algebra3
MATH 110Finite Mathematics3
MATH 112Precalculus Algebra3
MATH 113Precalculus Trigonometry3
MATH 115Precalc Algebra & Trig3

In computing the number of credit hours attempted, each enrollment in a course is counted (any required course in which an F is earned must be repeated and passed; hours in freshman composition and introductory math courses for which NC was reported are not included in GPA computations). In some academic divisions, a student who has obtained the dean's permission may repeat a course for which he or she has already earned credit. Each enrollment is counted in the number of credit hours attempted and in the computation of the grade point average. However, only the final enrollment may be applied to the requirements for the degree.

Incompletes and Failures

If a grade of F is earned in a required course, the student must repeat the course and earn a passing grade in order to receive credit that will be applied to the requirements for the degree. Grades of I must be removed within 12 months of the end of the term in which they were awarded but prior to the student's graduation or the grade of I will be changed to F. The I may not be used as a means to re-enroll in a course during a subsequent semester. A grade of I may not be used to satisfy a prerequisite requirement.

Pass/Fail Option

A student who is in good academic standing may request permission to receive a grade of P or F for a course, instead of the conventional A+, A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, D- or F. A grade of P does not affect the grade point average. However, a grade of F received in a course that the student has chosen to take under the pass/fail option is computed in the grade point average. Use of the pass/fail option is subject to the following regulations:

  • The student must be a sophomore, junior or senior with a grade point average of 2.0 or higher in order to use the pass/fail option1.
  • Only elective courses may be taken pass/fail.
  • A maximum of four courses or 12 credit hours (whichever comes first) may be taken pass/fail while a student is earning an undergraduate degree.
  • Only one course each fall semester, spring semester and summer term may be taken pass/fail.
  • Once the deadline to add a course has passed, a student may not rescind the decision to take a course with the pass/fail option.

A transfer student must have completed at least 15 credit hours at The University of Alabama with a grade point average of 2.0 or higher in order to use the pass/fail option.

1

These regulations apply only to courses for which the student elects the pass/fail option; courses that are offered only on a pass/fail basis are exempted.

Repeat Course Policy

The grade and credit of the last (most recent) attempt of a course taken more than once will count in the student’s GPA and earned hours. All previous attempts will only count in the calculation of the GPA but not in earned hours. This also applies to courses taken at other institutions and transferred in to UA as an equivalent course.

Requests for exceptions to this policy shall be submitted in writing (or email) by the college to the vice provost for academic affairs.

Federal Regulations limit the number of times a student may repeat a course and receive financial aid for that course. Questions about these regulations should be emailed to the Student Financial Aid Office through their webpage financialaid.ua.edu

Auditing Courses

Auditing a course allows a student to take a class without the benefit of a grade or credit for a course.  A student who audits a course does so for the purposes of refreshing one’s knowledge, self-enrichment and academic exploration.

The student must gain prior approval from the department offering the course in order to audit the course. The department will then work with the college’s student services office which will submit a request to the Office of the University Registrar to add the course to the student’s schedule as an audit. The deadline for gaining permission/registering as a course auditor coincides with the deadline for adding courses at the beginning of each semester.

Auditors receive no credit toward a degree, and an “AU” grade appears on the transcript. The credit received when auditing a course does not count toward your verification of full, half or less than half time enrollment status. This credit is not reported to the National Student Clearinghouse for enrollment verifications. 

The requirements that auditors are expected to meet in an audited course are left to the discretion of the instructor.  An auditor is typically considered a passive learner and may not recite in class or take examinations, but is expected to attend classes with reasonable regularity and do some assigned work. Please check with the instructor regarding his or her expectations.  Auditors pay standard tuition/fees for the course[s].

Non-Attendance Grading

Federal regulations require that institutions have a system for identifying students that registered for, but failed to begin attendance in any or all classes. Institutions are responsible for any aid disbursed to these students.  For students that cease attending classes, institutions are required to determine the date of last attendance for calculating the correct percentage of aid awarded based on the payment period completed prior to the last attendance date. Further, if there is no grading system that differentiates between an earned "F" and an "F" assigned for non-attendance, then the student is considered to have never attended or withdrawn for auditing purposes. 

When inputting midterm and final grades, instructors are required to select one of the following reasons when a grade of "F" (or "NC") is assigned:

  • Earned: Based on the evaluation of the student's work throughout the semester, the instructor has determined that the student failed to meet the stated objectives of the course.
  • Never Attended: The student did not attend a single class meeting or, in the event of online/distance learning courses, the student never participated in or contributed to the class.
  • Stopped Attending: The student stopped attending class during the semester and failed to return or resume participation. A "Last Attend Date" is required and should reflect the last documented class attendance or participation. Examples of documented attendance may include presence in class or during exams, completion of assignments, and/or participation in computer-assisted instruction.

Following the last day to drop a class with a grade of “W” for a given term, all grades of "F" (or "NC") submitted during midterm grading  will be reflected on the student’s transcript as final grades.  Any subsequent grades of “F” or “NC” submitted during the remainder of the term through final grading will also be reflected on the student’s transcript as final grades.  Midterm grades of "F" (or "NC") assigned with a reason of "Earned" will not be reflected on the transcript. The student will be able to continue on in the class and attempt to improve the grade.

Student registration will not be adjusted based on the assignment of failing grades with a reason of Stopped Attending or Never Attended. No tuition adjustments will be made for students who receive a failing grade for reasons of Stopped Attending or Never Attended unless they have properly withdrawn from that course within the established refund dates as published. All grades of "F", regardless of the reason for which they are assigned, will be punitive in regards to GPA. Grades of "NC" will continue to be non-punitive.