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California State University, Long Beach

What is an "Incomplete" grade?

If the student cannot complete all the assigned work for a class in time for grading and there is still a possibility for earning credit, the student may be allowed to take an "Incomplete" to extend the time to finish the assignments and receive a grade. To receive an Incomplete, the student must:

  • Have "unforeseen, but fully justified" reasons for not completing the class work (Policy Statement 02-12).

  • Bring all relevant information to the class instructor and agree with the instructor's terms for how and when the student will satisfy the remaining class requirements.

  • On notification of approval, the Instructor will file an incomplete contract including the terms of the Incomplete.

  • Complete the work within one year of the end of the semester in which the class was taken or within a shorter period as specified on the form. The student may receive an extension of the one-year completion period only for compelling reasons such as serious illness or military service, and only with the prior permission of the class instructor, department chairperson, and the college dean.

After the student submitted the completed class work to the instructor, the instructor will assign the final grade for the class. If no additional work is submitted, the student will receive the grade indicated by the instructor. If the instructor did not indicate a grade on the incomplete contract, the student will receive an "F" in the class.

The student will not be allowed to re-enroll in a class for which the student has an unresolved ‘Incomplete’ grade.

What is the difference between a 'W', 'WU' and a 'WE' ?

If a student enrolls in a course but wishes to officially withdraw from that course after the 2nd week of instruction, the student must complete and submit the Petition to Withdraw from a Class(es) form no later than the established deadline for that term. If the petition is approved, a grade of “W” will be assigned for that course. Although the “W” is not a punitive mark and carries no connotation of amount or quality of work completed, it is subject to CSULB’s Undergraduate Withdrawal Limit. Refer to the Dropping and Withdrawing from Classes for more information regarding course withdrawal procedures and deadlines to avoid receiving a "WU" grade.

The grading symbol "WU" indicates an Unauthorized Withdrawal, signifying that a student enrolled in a course but failed to attend or to withdraw from the course in a timely manner. When a student does not officially withdraw from a course and fails to complete the course requirements, the instructor assigns the "WU" grade.

If a student is granted a Medical Withdrawal, the administrative grade of "WE" is assigned to all classes. If the basis for the student withdrawal request cannot be substantiated by medical documentation and the withdrawal request is due to the serious nature of the circumstances beyond the student’s control, i.e. a documented death of an immediate (not extended) family member; a call from reserve to active military service, the student may petition for Withdrawal Due to Extenuating Circumstances. If granted, the administrative grade of "WE" is assigned to all classes and is not subject to CSULB’s Undergraduate Withdrawal Limit. Refer to Dropping and Withdrawing from Classes for additional information regarding course withdrawals.

How can a grade be changed?

If the student believes a grade was given in error, the student should notify the instructor. Changes to final grades can be made only on the authority of the instructor and only in the following cases:

  • error.
  • evaulation of additional assignments or examinations to satisfy an "Incomplete" grade.
  • As the result of a successful grade appeal - refer to grade appeals in the current University catalog

All requests for grade changes must be initiated within one term after which the student received the initial grade.