Bad grade? How about a do-over?
Students at the University of Colorado at Boulder have that option, but not for long, officials there announced yesterday. A memo to the administration said that the Boulder Faculty Assembly had voted in March to eliminate the university’s Course Repetition Program next summer.
The program allows students to retake a course in which they have performed poorly — D+ or lower for undergraduates, C+ or lower for graduate students — and replace the first grade with the second. Undergraduates are eligible to retake 10 credit hours, or two-and-a-half full courses, and graduate students may retake one course. There is no tuition credit, and if the new grade is worse than the old, it goes on the transcript anyway.
Thousands of students, mostly retaking introductory mathematics and science classes, have participated in the program since it began, in 2001, according to an article in the Daily Camera, a newspaper in Boulder.
Come the fall of 2010, students will still be able to retake courses, but both initial and final grades will count toward grade-point averages. That approach sits better with professors who think the current program dilutes academic standards, the Daily Camera reported.
Ryan Biehle, one of three student-body presidents, feels differently. “Course forgiveness doesn’t contribute to grade inflation or the lack of academic rigor,” he told the Daily Camera. “It gives a student a second chance who maybe had a bad semester.” —Sara Lipka