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ACADEMICS AND CLASSES
Emergency CR/NC (Credit/No Credit) Grading for Spring 2020 Semester
In response to the additional challenges that the COVID-19 health crisis has placed on many students, on Friday, March 20, the UA Little Rock Faculty Senate passed emergency legislation that temporarily amends the UA Little Rock Grading Policy (404.13) to allow instructors to issue grades of Credit/No Credit (CR/NC) in lieu of A-F grades for the remaining terms of the Spring 2020 semester.
The Faculty Senate Executive Committee is refining the exact language of the motion. Details about the expanded policy, including an FAQ for faculty and students, will be distributed on Monday, March 30th. If you have any questions in the meantime, please contact Associate Vice Chancellor Erin Finzer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Initial Student FAQ
- What does this announcement mean?
Our regular grading policy states that, in lieu of giving final grades of A-F, instructors can give a student a grade of CR (Credit) or NC (No Credit) for one course a semester in certain courses. Under this policy, a student and instructor have to agree to CR/NC at the beginning of the term.
This emergency extension of our regular grading policy will mean that students and instructors will potentially be able to use the CR/NC grade for more than just one class, and students will also be able to request CR/NC final grading later into the semester.
A potential advantage to a final grade of CR/NC is that CR/NC does not factor into a student’s GPA calculation. This will provide more flexibility for students who are worried about maintaining their GPAs during this challenging semester. Details about this emergency policy extension will be announced on Monday, March 30.
- Why is this needed?
Many colleges and universities across the country are adopting similar policies this semester due to the extraordinary circumstances that are disadvantaging some students (e.g., having to vacate dorms, transitioning to online from face-to-face, increased caretaking, illness, income loss, increased anxieties due to all of the above. Additionally, we know from the preliminary results of a student needs survey sent out last week that many of our students have limited access to the internet and computers now that our campus is restricted. Faculty members in the Faculty Senate approved this emergency expansion to our current grading policy to support students during these challenging times.
- Does this mean the semester is over?
No, each term currently in session [Spring 2020 full term, the second 9-week term (920), the second 7-week term (720), and the second and third 5-week terms (520, 530)] will continue until its regular completion date. Students will continue to participate in their classes and submit assigned work in order to complete their courses.
- Does this mean that the grade we have right now in the class will be our final grade?
No, all classes will continue to have graded assignments and tests, which will continue to be graded as normal. This expansion to our grading policy only applies to final grades.
- Is this optional? I do not want CR/NC because I have worked hard to earn an A.
CR/NC will be entirely optional. No student will be required to change the grading scheme. Keep in mind also that not all instructors will offer CR/NC final grades for various reasons, and some programs that lead to licensure (e.g., nursing) will also not be able to offer this option.
- How will this impact my GPA?
The grade “CR” (credit) and the grade “NC” (no credit) do not factor into a student’s term GPA or a student’s cumulative GPA. CR/NC grades will neither help nor harm the GPA, which is why it may be preferential for some students to request during this challenging semester.
- Does this apply to students who were already in all online coursework before the health emergency?
Yes, this will be available to students enrolled in any class in Spring 2020 full term, the second 9-week term (920), the second 7-week term (720), and the second and third 5-week terms (520, 530). Certain courses in certain programs (e.g., nursing) cannot be taken for a CR/NC grade and must remain on the standard A-F grading scale. Your instructor and advisor will be able to provide more information to you about these specific courses.
- Will this affect my ability to graduate this semester?
No, it will have no impact on students’ ability to graduate this semester or in the future.
- What about this summer?
At this time, the emergency policy expansion is only for the Spring 2020 semester.
- I am a nursing/pre-nursing student. Does this mean I can get CR/NC in my nursing and pre-requisite nursing coursework?
No, courses in nursing (including pre-requisite courses for nursing), as well as some other programs with strict licensure or accreditation guidelines, will not be eligible for the CR/NC final grading option.
The Staff Senate’s anonymous Issues and Concerns portal is still active and advocating on behalf of staff members at this time. For those of you who have submitted anonymous issues, we have heard you. If you need us, we are here for you.
On-Site Staffing Status of Offices March 23 forward until further notice:
Finance & Administration Suite – Open Daily
Facilities Management – Open Daily
Information Technology Services – Open Daily
Budget Office – Open Daily
Financial Services – Open Daily
Mail Services – Open Daily
Printing Services – Open Daily
Bursar’s Office – Cashier’s Office Open Daily (Student Accounts will work remotely)
Procurement – Open Monday, then remotely
Campus Police – Open Daily
“Open” means there will be on-site staff
The Ottenheimer Library will provide virtual services during spring break. The library building will be closed, March 24 – March 30. All library e-resources will be available 24/7 at the library website via NetID and password. Research assistance (via phone, email, text, and chat) will be available at Ask Ottenheimer Library.
Beginning Monday, March 23, physical access to the Ottenheimer Library and Bowen School of Law Library will be limited to current UA Little Rock students, faculty, and staff until further notice. Virtual library assistance will be available to all users via the library websites.
The Office of Communications and Marketing must approve all UA Little Rock messaging regarding COVID-19. This includes announcements to employees, students, or the community. If you have an announcement to be included in the COVID-19 daily digest, the announcement should have vice chancellor approval and should be sent to Jeff Harmon at email@example.com by 1 p.m. each day. If you have questions about what constitutes an appropriate announcement, please work with a member of the communications team.
At this time, please refrain from posting event modifications or office closings to university listservs without the appropriate vice chancellor approval.
COVID-19 NEWS FROM THE REGION
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