No more retakes after "C" grade
September 19, 2008 4:30 PM
Certain students who don’t like their grade are stuck with it after SF State’s academic senate tightened the criteria for those wanting to retake a course.
On Sept. 8, the California State University’s Office of the Chancellor issued an executive order stating that all “undergraduate students may repeat courses only if they earned grades lower than a C.” Before, students needed to have a grade lower than a B to retake a class at SF State. In addition, previous changes had been made to the class retake policy last spring, including a 24 unit limit to repeated units and the ability to only repeat a class once, the latter which Helen Goldsmith, associate dean of undergraduate studies, called "the most important change in the policy."
"We're so crowded these days, so we're trying to make access [to classes] as equitable as possible ... It's good for students ... you want be making progress forward," she said.
The only time the rules don't apply is when a course is listed in the current bulletin as "repeatable for credit," said the proposed revision. But for many classes, the rules apply and students will need to be more cautious about taking courses in order instead of taking whatever is available and finding themselves overwhelmed and dropping the course.
"That will reduce the currently understandable tendency to enroll in whatever required class
is available, instead of taking classes in the appropriate sequential order," said Ray Trautman via email. Trautman is the Academic Senate secretary and professor of chemistry and biochemistry.
The revisions are not 100 percent finalized yet. "The Academic Senate is currently working on a slight revision to the Policy in order to bring it in-line with a new CSU-system-wide course-repeat policy," wrote Wei Ming Dariotis in an email. Dariotis is an assistant professor of Asian American Studies and chair of the Academic Policies Committee.
Another facet to the rules is that “as students enroll in fewer courses per semester, it becomes easier for everyone to get into desired classes,” said Trautman. Trautman said he believes that students will have higher GPAs because they will create more thoughtful academic plans knowing the new rules.
Because graduate students must maintain a 3.0 GPA, the "C clause" doesn’t apply to them, but for the approximately 25,000 undergrads, this can be a pain or a blessing, depending how one looks at it. However, Goldsmith said she never encountered a student who received a C or above who wanted to repeat a course for a better grade.
"Students who repeat courses will trigger a message to see their academic advisers," wrote Dariotis. Like Trautman, she emphasized that "the main purpose of the policy is to increase advising for students who are repeating courses."
"In the old days I could take [a class] 100 times and no one would stop me," said Goldsmith.
The new policy can be viewed at http://www.sfsu.edu/~senate/documents/attachments/09.09.08/Repeat-Courses.html
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