Teaching

Reminder: Please make sure you update your syllabi to reflect course changes (i.e. your new online formatting) and nicolelizette [at] email [dot] arizona [dot] edu (subject: Updated%20Course%20Syllabi) (email to Nicole)

Teaching Resources

Syllabi, Exams & Grading Systems

Update as of 3/23/2020:
 
From Provost Folks re Grading Policies:

Pass/Fail Grading
During the Spring 2020 term only, and at the discretion of the individual student, any course may be graded on a pass/fail basis, and these courses will count toward program requirements and satisfy future prerequisite requirements if a passing grade is earned. A student wishing to move to the pass/fail grading option must notify the registrar by the last day of class for the Spring 2020 term.

II.   Course Withdrawal
The last date for a student-initiated withdrawal from a full-term class in the current term will be moved to April 14, 2020, and the units associated with withdrawn courses will NOT count toward the 18-unit lifetime maximum allowed for undergraduate students.
For non-full-term sessions, the registrar will provide similar dates. The deadline for complete withdrawal will remain the last day of class.
Note: The new deadline for individual class withdrawal occurs after students have been allowed to experience the new online modality for three weeks.

III.   Grade Replacement Opportunity and Repeating a Course
In a future term, students may repeat any course taken during the Spring 2020 term without having this subsequent attempt count towards grade replacement opportunity (GRO) or repeat option limits.
Current University of Arizona policies stipulate that students may attempt a course no more than twice. For the purpose of GRO, a student may only attempt to repeat a total of three courses, not to exceed 10 units, and only those students who have earned fewer than 60 units may utilize GRO.
Note: This policy change will not undo any previously utilized course repeat or GRO attempts, nor will it allow any student who is no longer eligible for grade replacement to become eligible.

IV.   Undergraduate Academic Eligibility
Academic eligibility is the ability to enroll in courses at the University of Arizona; it is automatically calculated at the end of each fall and spring semester. The five undergraduate academic statuses are: eligible, academic review, academic warning, academic probation, ineligible.
The academic eligibility status of an undergraduate student at the end of the Spring 2020 term will be determined by the student’s most recent status, unless a student earns a cumulative 2.0 GPA or greater, in which case their status will become "eligible." This will allow students to move out of the bottom four statuses if they had a "good" Spring 2020 semester, or remain in their current status if the Spring 2020 semester is not helpful to their academic standing. That is, with this revised policy, a student could not move from warning to probation, nor from probation to ineligible statuses.

V.  Incomplete Grades
University of Arizona policy states that "the grade of I may be awarded only at the end of the term, when all but a minor portion of the course work has been satisfactorily completed. The grade of I is not to be awarded in place of a failing grade or when the student is expected to repeat the course."
This policy and process is not being revised and we hope this grading option will be used very sparingly. However, if you feel this is the appropriate grading option, we encourage you to consult with individual students prior to assigning an I grade (in order to clearly specify the work to be completed, as well as the timeline for completion). The I grade should NOT be given to an entire class.

Update as of 3/19/2020:
 
Grading Policies: Here is some additional information on grading for your courses. FYI, the document talks a lot about using “I” grades – incompletes. Please DON’T use incompletes unless there is a very super-outstanding-unusual-totally unexpected reason. AND, only if the student has a clear and limited timeline for completing the small amount of work they need to finish – please don’t leave it to just “you’ll need to do it within a year” because those students will undoubtedly fail to hand in the work, and they will fail the course. If you’re going to provide an “I” grade to a student, please talk to me first. You should be flexible when unexpected circumstances arise, and this semester there will likely be lots of opportunities to work on your flexibility quotient.
  • Per Rebecca, “Instructors do have wide latitude in how they revise their syllabi but Lisa in OIA suggests that we stay as close as possible to the original assessment schemes. She suggests providing more low-stakes assessment opportunities, much in line with the discussion with our faculty who recognized that it would be more problematic to raise the stakes on assignments as compared to lowering the stakes.”
  • From Lisa: “We have broad latitude to make changes to syllabi to accommodate these changes. However, I suspect it might be easier for students to remain as close as possible to the general assessment scheme. So for example, if 50% of the class comes from midterm and final “exams,” perhaps that percentage can be maintained, but the assessments can be more frequent and lower-stakes each, rather than one single high-stakes event.  Another item that’s been discussed in our assessment webinars is that we may be re-focusing our work on the learning objectives that can most easily be addressed online. So, the online activities will also be changed to address those objectives, and the assessments will therefore also need to be changed.” 
  • Lisa also suggests that you might need to revise your syllabus further over the next week or so as you figure out what works and what doesn’t. You might also consider polling your students to get their input into how the changes are going.  Whatever your changes, please document them within your syllabus, stamp it with the update date, and send it to Nicole so that we have a record of what you’re doing.  If you need to revise it multiple times, that’s fine with us.