Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola

The Maroon

    Minus sign may appear in fall 2009

    On Dec. 2, Loyola’s Standing Committee for Academic Planning set a plan to adopt a plus/minus grading scale fall of 2009.

    Edward Kvet, provost and vice president of academic affairs, said Loyola’s current grading system gives pluses but no minuses with a .5 quality point grading scale.

    “This is, from what we can determine, the only school in the nation that does this, and it’s a very awkward system,” Kvet said.

    According to Kvet, other universities either use the plus/minus grading scale or they do not use a plus scale at all.

    Kvet said the idea for the plus/minus grading scale had been discussed by many in the University community for the past eight to 10 years, and Hurricane Katrina was the catalyst for the idea to be brought to the forefront again.

    “Right after Katrina we had a number of students who attended other universities that possibly had the plus/minus system, and it caused a lot of confusion in how their grades would be treated once they transferred back to Loyola,” Kvet said.

    Kvet said the one point he wants to make clear is that grades received before the fall 2009 semester will not be affected by the proposed grading scale.

    “I understand the student concern with, ‘Gee, is that going to lower my GPA?’ No,” Kvet said.

    Kvet also understands the new grading scale may take some getting used to by faculty members.

    “I believe, in my opinion, some faculty members may find it easier to have a more uniform grading system,” Kvet said.

    Since the idea to change the current grading scale has moved closer to a reality, there have been many debates between Student Government Association members.

    Brian Parks, College of Social Sciences senator said in an e-mail to The Maroon that although the motion has been passed by the committee, SGA still needs to make a formal recommendation to be added to the proposal.

    Parks, political science senior, said the main concern he heard from fellow SGA members is the worry that their grade point average would fall as a result of the grading policy.

    “All in all, I feel like the consensus from Senate is a positive one for the change as long as it is properly explained to the student body,” Parks said.

    Alex Fournet, College of Business senator, said the main reason why he is against the change in the grading policy is because there is no uniformity in the grading scale.

    “It’s a plus or minus system, with no A+ or no D-,” said Fournet, international business sophomore. “Our grading scale is already unique, it makes us to appear to be more well-rounded students will our current grading scale.”

    According to the Standing Committee for Academic Planning’s “Motion to Adopt a Plus-Minus Grade Grading System,” admissions, financial aid and scholarships based on a student’s grade point average will not be affected.

    Jaune Jackson can be reached at [email protected].

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