Faculty Resources FAQs

Classroom and Instruction
Grading Related


Classroom and Instruction


If a student is being disruptive, am I allowed to ask them to leave the class?

Absolutely! This is addressed under Lifestyle Expectation #2 in the catalog: Actions that interfere with the educational process or the administration of the University, including those that obstruct or disrupt the use of University premises, buildings, rooms, or passages, or which incite a disturbance are grounds for disciplinary action.


Can I post charts, maps, or other resources on classroom walls?

No. To be sensitive to other classes meeting in the room after you, please erase the white boards and remove anything that was displayed (on the walls, or elsewhere in the room) before your class session ends. 


Am I allowed to cancel a class offering?

No, only your department chair may cancel courses. 


What if a student doesn’t show up for class? When should I contact Student Academic Services?

If you, as instructor or advisor, receive notification that a student will not be attending, contact Student Academic Services and request that the student be administratively withdrawn from the course.


Additionally, if a student does not attend class within the first two days of the quarter, you may ask Student Academic Services to administratively withdraw that student from the class. (If a student knows that he or she will miss the first class, it is best to notify the instructor to avoid being withdrawn from the class.) SAS sends a reminder email to all faculty to take attendance and notify SAS by the 10th day of each quarter about any students who have not attended the course. SAS will follow up with the student and withdraw them if appropriate.


Do all classes meet on holidays?

Classes are not held on Labor Day, Thanksgiving, over the Christmas holidays and Memorial Day. Check the University Calendar for the most up-to-date information.


Evening classes (meeting after 4 p.m.) WILL typically meet on certain holidays such as Veterans Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and Presidents Day to meet the required class hours. If you have questions, contact the Office of Academic Affairs or Student Academic Services.


What if there is a threat of inclement weather or other emergency?

Call the SPU School Closure Hotline at 206-281-2800 for up-to-date news about closures.


Back to top




Grading Related


Am I required to grant a student’s request for an incomplete?

The “I” (incomplete) grade indicates a student did not complete the work assigned for a course because of absence from school during the quarter due to illness or an acceptable emergency.

  • Your student must initiate the request for the “I” grade prior to the final examination or last class session. Unless the student is incapacitated, this request should be made in writing. Here is a link to the Agreement for Incomplete Grade form that the instructor may keep for his or her records. 
  • You may require documentation verifying the illness or acceptable emergency (e.g., a note from a medical doctor).
  • You are under no obligation to grant the request for an “I” grade. However, if you choose to issue an “I” grade, you will formulate a plan for the student’s completion of the course requirements, which must be approved by the department chair or the dean.  
  • Determine a timeline for course completion. But remember the student must submit final coursework within one calendar year or the “I” becomes an “E” (failing) grade.
  • Student Academic Services recommends that the student follow up with you to make sure that the “I” grade has been removed once the completion plan is fulfilled.


Note: The student may not attend a future class in which she or he is not registered as a means of working toward completion of an “I” grade.


Am I required to give a final exam in all my classes?

The final exam period is considered an instructional period; classes are expected to meet during the scheduled time whether or not a final exam is given. Final exams are scheduled by SAS for any class that is 3 credits or higher. A final exam is not required in every class ― some professors choose to require a term paper or other means of assessment. Because of potential room conflicts, faculty should confirm the scheduled time for final examinations by checking their schedule on the web.


What if I don’t see a final exam period scheduled for my class?

If you have a 1- or 2-credit course, and want a class time scheduled during finals week, contact Student Academic Services at sasinfo@spu.edu. A two-hour final exam meeting is scheduled during the last three days of every quarter.


What if a student asks to reschedule his or her final exam?

If a student has more than two exams on any day, he or she may reschedule one of the exams with the instructor at a mutually convenient time.


You may refuse a student’s request to reschedule a final examination, but instructors may schedule an early final exam for a student under the following conditions:

  • The student has mitigating circumstances that, in your judgment, warrant rescheduling the final exam.
  • The student’s request to reschedule a final exam is made at least two weeks before the regularly scheduled final-exam period.
  • The rescheduled final exam is given no earlier than four working days prior to the last day of the final examination period.


What if a student stops attending class but shows up for the final exam?

If you have a student who’s not attending class, notify SAS within the first week of the quarter (or by the end of the second week, at the latest). If there is no follow-up during the quarter, the risk of having the student appear at the end of the quarter demanding special consideration becomes greater. Once again, Student Academic Services will follow up with the student. If the student is still registered for the course, then the student is still eligible to take the final exam, even if no other work was submitted during the term.


Is there a standard grading breakdown used on campus?

Yes, as published in the university catalog. A student’s grade point average (GPA) is determined by dividing the total number of grade points earned during a given period by the number of credits for which the student was enrolled and received a regular grade during the same period. For example, if a student earns 45 grade points during a quarter in which he or she is enrolled for 15 credits, the GPA for the quarter is 3.0.


What if I miss the grading deadline?

It is the instructor’s responsibility to meet all grade deadlines. Meeting deadlines is essential for providing students with timely grade reports and official transcripts. Late grade submittals can have serious ramifications for students.


If, due to a medical or family emergency, your grades will be late, contact your department chair or dean and Student Academic Services. Also send an email to your students. Please provide a proposed deadline for when your grades will be submitted.


School deans are notified quarterly of instructors who have not submitted grades by the quarterly grading deadline. The University Calendar lists the quarterly grading deadlines. Grades may be submitted to SAS or entered via Banner.


What if I made an error in grading?

If an error affects multiple students in a class, contact Kelli Knapp (kknapp@spu.edu) in Student Academic Services. Grade changes due to clerical error must be corrected no later than one quarter following the quarter the original grade was assigned. You must submit, in writing, the grade correction and an explanation to Student Academic Services. Change of Grade forms are available from Student Academic Services or from departments’ administrative assistants. A signature by your department chair or school dean is required. Note: Instructors may not allow students to complete extra work in order to boost their original grade.


What if I catch a student cheating on a test or involved in plagiarism?

Expectations regarding academic integrity are outlined here, and in the Undergraduate Catalog. Additional expectations may be defined in the class syllabus and/or department policy handbooks. Both students and the professor in each class have the obligation to report and prevent cheating, plagiarism, or other academic misconduct.


In the event that you suspect academic misconduct, or that such conduct is reported to you, adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Prior to a formal meeting, gather information from the student or others to determine any issues in question.
  • You must notify your department chair or dean for the purpose of information and guidance.
  • If you verify that an act of academic dishonesty has occurred, you must make a reasonable attempt to hold a conference with the student to discuss the misconduct. At that time, explain the procedures for adjudicating the case.
    • If the student fails to respond in a timely manner to your request for a conference, you may turn over to the chair or dean for action. (See Lifestyle Expectations #2, 5, and 10.)
  • If, following the conference, you (or the chair or dean in the case of 2.1 above) are convinced that the student violated the academic integrity policy, the department chair or school dean will take appropriate action. The penalty imposed will be commensurate with the seriousness of the offense, ranging from loss of credit for the work in question to loss of credit for the entire course.
  • This decision(s) will be reported in writing to the student and the chair/dean. A copy of the decision(s) will be sent to the AVPAA. The AVPAA and the school dean will decide whether documentation of the incident and decision will be included in the student judicial record in the Office of Student Life.
  • If the student appeals any decision, the appeal will move through the process as outlined in Academic Appeals. A copy of all decisions, including appeals, will be sent to the office of the AVPAA and/or the Office of Student Life as determined by the AVPAA and dean.


How long do I need to keep my grading records?

It is up to each individual faculty member to determine his/her retention policy unless individual departments/schools have established a policy.

Back to top


SAS Faculty Resources home