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USC Grading Standards and Guidelines

USC Grading System and Common Notations

The University of South Carolina grades on a standard 4.0 grading system. A, B, C, D represent passing grades in order from highest to lowest. B+, C+, D+ may also be recorded. F represents failing performance.

Quality Point





Very Good






Above Average






Below Average








 Other Common Notations

  • S (Satisfactory) and U (Unsatisfactory) indicate, respectively, passing (S) and failing (U) performance in courses carried under the Pass-Fail option or in courses where regular academic grades are not used. Usage of the S/U (Pass-Fail) grading option is indicated in a course’s bulletin description. These courses do not affect a student’s grade point average.
  • FN (Failure-Non Attendance) and UN (Unsatisfactory-Non Attendance) grades are assigned to students who never attended or have stopped attending class but have not officially dropped or withdrawn. Faculty are required to provide a last date of attendance when assigning this grade in order to determine the recalculation of awarded funds for financial aid recipients and the university. FN and UN grades are displayed and calculated as F and U grades on the official transcript.
  • WF is assigned for student withdrawal from a course after the penalty deadline listed in academic and refund calendars on the registrar’s Web site. The grade of WF is treated as an F in the evaluation of grade point average computation.
  • W is assigned for student withdrawal from a course after the late registration period but before the WF penalty date. Courses dropped during the late registration period (as published in academic and refund calendars) will not be recorded on a student’s permanent record. A grade of W will not enter into grade point average computation but will be recorded on a student’s permanent record.
  • I, Incomplete, is assigned at the discretion of the instructor when, in the instructor’s judgment, a student is unable to complete some portion of the assigned work in a course because of an unanticipated illness, accident, work-related responsibility, family hardship, or verified learning disability. The grade of I is not intended to give students additional time to complete course assignments unless there is some indication that the specified condition or event prevented the student from completing course assignments on time. By arrangement with the instructor, the student will have up to 12 months in which to complete the work before a permanent grade is recorded. Re-enrolling in the course will not make up an Incomplete. An Assignment of Incomplete Grade form (AS-5) must be completed by the instructor and submitted to the Office of the University Registrar explaining the reason for the I and conditions for make-up. A grade of I is not computed in calculating a student’s grade point average. After 12 months, an I that has not been made up is changed to a grade of F or to the back-up grade indicated by the faculty member on the Assignment of Incomplete Grade form.
  • NR, No Record, is assigned in the event that the grade is not available at the time final grades are submitted. It is a temporary mark on the transcript and must be replaced by a grade. If replacement does not occur before the last week of the spring or fall semester following the term for which the grade was recorded, a grade of F will be assigned. The NR is ignored in computing the GPA.

Grade Change Policy

Grade changes based on transcription or computation errors should be reported directly to the Office of the University Registrar using the appropriate unit’s grade change form. Requests for a grade change must be submitted by the instructor no later than one calendar year from the date on which the grade was reported. Beyond this period, grade changes will be considered only in exceptional circumstances via petition procedure of the student’s college. Any other grade change request resulting from enrollment discrepancies, medical withdrawals, or perceived administrative errors must be submitted on the appropriate forms documentation to the dean of the student’s college for review through the petition procedure. This does not apply to the routine makeup and extension of an I (incomplete) and posting of a permanent grade to replace the recorded NR mark. Special makeup work or examinations to change grades already recorded are not permitted.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.