Grades and Course Units

Graduate Medical Sciences Policy

Grade Explanation
A to B– Pass with units
C+ or below Considered failure (graduate units not granted)
P Pass with units
F Fail
I Incomplete, with additional work required
X Unresolved status
J Registration in a following term necessary to complete requirements
AU Audit
N No units granted toward a graduate degree
W Withdrawal after five weeks
MG Missing grade

Courses with Pass/Fail Grade Assignment

If a student earns a grade of “Fail” in courses with Pass/Fail grade assignments, the course manager has the option to use the range of grades from a C+ to an F for final grade assignment.

Grade Changes

Grades, including incompletes, may not be changed after a period of one (1) year from the time the original grade is recorded. Grade changes are intended to correct inaccuracies arising from miscalculations and grading errors, as well as for makeup exams completed after grades have been submitted due to extenuating circumstances. A student’s grade cannot be changed after a student has officially graduated from Boston University.

Units from GMS Online Courses

Units earned from GMS online courses can be counted toward the degree, if preapproved by the program.

Incomplete Coursework and Failing Grades

Incomplete Grades

An incomplete grade (I) is granted when a student cannot complete course requirements on time due to extenuating circumstances. A student may be required to provide proof of the circumstances.

An incomplete grade may be granted with the condition that the student will complete the coursework on their own and within a specific and mutually agreed-upon time frame. In no case can that time frame exceed more than one (1) year (twelve months) from the time the incomplete grade is assigned.

Course managers may not grant an incomplete grade as an alternative to submitting a poor or failing grade. In the event that a student does not complete coursework or make a timely request for an incomplete grade, the course manager must assign a grade.

If the incomplete coursework is not completed by the required completion date, a final grade of “F” will be entered by the GMS registrar. Receipt of an “F” grade is preventable only if the student successfully presents evidence to the Associate Provost for GMS that further time is warranted. The evidence must be presented at least one (1) month prior to the required course completion date.

Missing Grades

The designation of “MG” indicates an unresolved registration status. “MG” is assigned by faculty to students who never attended the course or who stopped attending the course before the last day to drop a standard class without a “W” grade (see the Office of the Registrar’s website for date). “MG” should be used rarely.

Faculty members entering an “MG” must include in the “Comments” the reason for the grade and give the last known date the student attended the course. Note: For students who stopped attending a course after the last day to drop a standard class without a “W,” faculty must submit a letter grade or an “I.” An “I” grade can only be used if the faculty member and student have discussed a plan for completing course requirements and filled out and submitted an “Incomplete Form.” Refer to the policy on “Incomplete” grades.

Students will not be permitted to graduate with an MG in a non-PDP (Physical Development Program) course. Undergraduate students, working with their school/college student service or advising office, and graduate students, working with their respective graduate directors or associate deans, must resolve MGs in all non-PDP courses before the last day of classes of the following term (spring for fall courses, fall for spring and summer courses) or before graduation, whichever is earlier. An unresolved MG in a non-PDP course will convert to an “F” after that deadline. Students are permitted to graduate with an MG in a PDP course on their transcripts; however, an “MG” in a PDP course being used to fulfill the requirements of a degree program (e.g., the Dance minor) must be resolved as above. Students should be aware that MGs on the transcript are not desirable.

Dispute Resolution Process

A concern or complaint from a GMS student should be directed to the persons whose actions or inactions have given rise to the concern or complaint. Whenever possible, every effort should be made to resolve the problem promptly at the level at which it occurred. If a student feels they have been unfairly treated by a GMS course manager or teaching assistant, the student should contact the chair or director of the department or program in which the course is housed. If the department chair or program director is the course manager, the student should seek assistance from the Associate Provost for GMS. Should the student need additional assistance, they may also see staff in the Boston University Office of the Ombuds.

Conditions and Consequences of Repeating a Course

Grades for every course in which a student registers, including repeated courses, will appear on the student’s transcript. The units from courses in which the student fails to achieve the minimum grade of B– are not counted toward the unit requirement for graduation, but the grade is factored into the student’s overall grade point average.

Students repeating courses are strongly encouraged to contact the Student Financial Services office to verify their financial aid eligibility prior to the start of the term.

Failing Grades

Grades of C+ or lower are failing grades. A student receiving such grades in total of eight (8) unit hours will be automatically dismissed from GMS. Additionally, units for any class in which a student earns a grade of C+ or lower will not be counted toward total earned units.