The coronavirus pandemic exacerbated academic and financial hardships for students of all ages.
College and grade school students failed more classes in the first semester of 2020 than any other year prior. At Salt Lake Community College, options exist to help students who may have received their first failing grade.
“Before the semester ends, [students] can contact the instructor for assistance. Also, if students are eligible, they can work with their instructor and create a plan for an ‘Incomplete Grade’ agreement,” said MaryEtta Chase from the Office of the Registrar and Academic Records.
Chase also mentioned that students have the option to retake the class for a better grade.
“Under the repeated class policy, a student that is repeating classes taken after 2002 can repeat a class and have the higher grade calculated into their cumulative GPA instead of the failed course without any further action,” said Ashley Sokia, director of Academic Advising at SLCC.
Sokia said there are some limitations to the repeated class policy.
“Some classes have a limit on how many times a student can repeat the class under the repeated class policy. If a student is repeating a class they took before 2002, they will need to submit the ‘Repeated Class Notification’ form on the Office of the Registrar’s website,” Sokia said.
Sokia said it is normal for an “E” to remain on a student’s transcript after repeating a class, but “it will not be calculated into the cumulative GPA which is used for graduation and financial aid.”
For students who are depending on financial aid, Sokia warned, “your financial aid can be affected if you retake courses. Financial aid advisors can counsel you through your options to remain eligible for funding.”
Sokia said students with extenuating circumstances have the option of filing a registration appeal.
“Registration appeals are very specific for students who had an extenuating circumstance that left them unable to successfully complete a semester such as job loss, divorce, family death, etc. The appeal is not necessarily applicable to most failed classes,” Sokia said.
Sokia recommended that a student speak with an academic advisor about their circumstance. An academic advisor may review the requirements, “but you [the student] will be responsible for providing supporting documentation and a written statement detailing your reasons for the appeal.”
Despite the retake process, the simplest answer, if possible, seems to be early intervention. Sokia encouraged students to contact their instructors first if there’s any worry over failing a class.
“SLCC professors would also like to see you succeed and they would like to know how they can best help,” Sokia said.