University of California, San Diego


August 10, 2000


SUBJECT:  Changes in Policies and Procedures Relative to
                     Petitioning of Retroactive Incompletes and
                     Petitions Owing to "University Responsibility"

The Committee on Educational Policy (CEP) has revised procedures relative to the petitioning of retroactive Incompletes and student petitions generated owing to "university responsibility." Effective Fall quarter 2000, all student petitions for retroactive Incomplete grades must be submitted directly to CEP. A retroactive Incomplete is defined as a request for an Incomplete (I) grade after finals weeks. All necessary forms and documentation must be included. Additionally, CEP eliminated "university responsibility" as a student petition exception criterion. CEP concluded that errors made by the University should not be included in the student petition process. Rather, the university representative responsible for the error should submit a memorandum describing the circumstance, along with the appropriate supporting documentation.

For this process to be effective, it is imperative that all instructional faculty understand the approved CEP policy regarding Incompletes (emphasis added):

500(B) The I Grade

1. The grade I may be assigned to a student's work when the work is of non-failing quality, but is incomplete for good cause (illness, for example). The deadline for filing a request for an Incomplete shall be no later than the first working day after final examination week. An instructor may not grant a request for an Incomplete for other than such good cause. [Am 5/25/93; Am 4/23/96]

2. The instructor shall make arrangements with the student for completion of the work required at the earliest possible date, but no later than the last day of the finals week in the following quarter. If not replaced by this date, the I grade will lapse into an F grade. The instructor may neither agree no require that the student wait until the next time the course is offered in order to make up incomplete work, but must make individual a retroactive Incomplete is, therefore, defined by the policy as a request for the grade I after finals week. Furthermore, CEP has determined "good cause" to be documented cause beyond the student's control, such as a disabling illness or accident, or a family crisis or trauma that strikes the student or the immediate family. Approval of Incompletes or retroactive Incompletes for unacceptable reasons (demands of a time-consuming job; desire to leave town for a vacation; an athletic contest; lack of sufficient time to produce a "really good" paper, etc.) gives these students an unfair advantage over those students in the class who may have encountered equal or greater difficulties but who were expected to, and did, complete their work by the end of the quarter.

                                                Gabriele Wienhausen, Chair
                                                Committee on Educational Policy