Grades and Grading

Evaluation of a student’s performance in a RISD course is done by letter grade. A letter grade is awarded to indicate the level of performance. It becomes a part of the student’s permanent academic record. In studio classes, these letter grades may be supplemented by written comments from the instructor describing and analyzing each student’s performance in the class. Written comments do not become a part of the student’s permanent academic record.

The following grading scale is used for letter grades:

Grades included in the GPA:

A = 4.000
C = 2.000
A- = 3.700
C- = 1.700
B+ = 3.300
D+= 1.300
B = 3.000
D = 1.000
B- = 2.700
F = 0.000 (Failure)
C+ = 2.300
I = 0.00 (Incomplete)

UW = 0.00 (Unofficial withdrawal)

*The grade of UW is used when an instructor indicates a student stopped attending or never attended class or the instructor has not submitted a grade.

As of Fall 2015, if a course is failed and then repeated, all course attempts and grades are recorded on the student’s transcript; however, in the calculation of the grade point average, only the grade from the most recent attempt is used.

Internships taken for credit, along with select designated one-credit workshops, are the only RISD courses graded using a pass/fail system (P/F). The grading system for one-credit courses can be designated as letter grade or pass/fail at the discretion of the instructor and the approval of the department head. The grading system may not be changed once registration has begun. A student does not decide on a P/F option. The entire course is either pass/fail or it is letter graded.

Grades not included in the GPA:

P = (Pass)

NC = no credit (used only for courses taken but not passed at Brown or to indicate a missing grade on a RISD class)

S and U (Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory) are used only as midterm grades.

W = course withdrawal

A permanent grade of “W” is assigned when the student withdraws from a course during the Course Withdrawal Period (see the Academic Calendar for the Withdrawal deadline).

Class Rank

RISD does not compute and does not report a student’s rank in class.

Assigning Incompletes (the “I” grade)

The description of the incomplete grade, its appropriate use, and the deadlines for making up the work were all changed by a vote of the faculty in Spring 2012. The description and deadline date details are found on the Grade of Incomplete page.

Viewing Grades

Students are not able to see the grades submitted by faculty on WebAdvisor until the Registrar’s Office updates them to student transcripts. This update to transcripts is done at least once a day, generally starting on the day grades are due. Once this process takes place, students can view grades and faculty can no longer modify them online (instructors must submit a paper Change of Grade Form).