FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFTA) — A new University of Arkansas policy will give second chances to students who received a few bad grades. “Grade exclusion” could save some students’ grade point average and help students switching majors, a faculty member said.
Starting next semester, students can drop nine hours of courses in which they earned a “D” or “F”. They won’t have to retake the course or take a hit to their GPA. The new policy is an expansion of the grade forgiveness policy that currently allows students to retake those courses.
“It can save students money, and by getting it out of their GPA, we can maybe prevent them from going on probation or academic suspension for GPA purposes,” said Prof. Julie Trivitt, who is the chairwoman for the committee that put together the policy.
Students changing majors will particularly benefit from this change, Trivitt said, as they won’t have bad grades hanging over them from coursework they no longer pursue.
“Engineering and pre-med are two [majors] where I think we see the largest number of people switch out of those before they graduate,” Trivitt.
Mary-Morgan Ellis is a student at the UofA, and she said she’s seen fellow students feel the weight of one bad class.
“Three hours can dictate if you’re gonna stay at the school or not,” Ellis said.
Blake Hinds, a former student, said he might’ve considered taking advantage of this when he was in classes.
“There’s definitely maybe two or three I wish I could go back and redo,” Hinds said. “For the most part, I didn’t have too much of an issue with that.”
The university may be coddling students by continuing to build on the current grade forgiveness system, Hinds said.
“To give them almost nine hours of credit? I don’t know,” Hinds said. “I think that’s a little far-fetched.”
Ellis said she thinks it could be helpful if implemented correctly.
“Giving students that opportunity to start again, reset, try again maybe next semester is a super cool chance for them,” Ellis said.