The end of the semester is upon us. I hope your Thanksgiving holiday gave you a chance to find out how your student’s first semester at Drake has been going. Did he/she find changes in friends at home, in your house, in how he/she relates to you? The time between Thanksgiving break and winter break tends to be a hectic and stressful time for students. Many feel apprehensive about taking final exams at the same time they’re feeling sad at missing out on family rituals surrounding the holidays. Did your family always bake cookies together on a special date? Was holiday decorating part of your family traditions? Did your town or school have a holiday celebration which your student will be missing? Is there a way you can incorporate students in your family’s happenings long-distance?
As the semester draws to a close I thought I’d give you some sense of things that happen here at Drake while your student is not on campus. The entire university is closed from 4:30 December 20 until 8 am on January 5. Faculty will be calculating final grades and entering them into the student records system electronically with a due date of January 5, 2009. So while some of your student’s grades may be viewable now, others may not be available until after the due date of January 5.
At the end of each fall and spring semester the University reviews students’ grades for satisfactory academic progress. Based on end of semester grades your student may fall into one of these categories:
Academic Suspension – see this web site for full probation/suspension policy
-first-semester students with a cumulative GPA of less than 1.0 will be suspended from the university for a period of 1 year. The suspension letter, which is sent by the office of each individual college (A&S, Business, Journalism, etc,) will designate if an appeal of the suspension is allowed and how that is to happen. These letters will be going out prior to January 10, 2009.
-students with a cumulative GPA of less than 2.0 will be placed on academic probation. A student is allowed two consecutive semesters on probation; after the second semester if the cumulative GPA is still not greater than 2.0 the student faces suspension.
-students who achieve a term GPA of 3.5 or higher in a minimum of 12 credits (excluding credit/no credit grades and incomplete grades) will be placed on the Dean’s List and notified by letter by the college office.
-students who achieve straight ‘A’ grades (a 4.0 term GPA) in a minimum of 12 credits (excluding credit/no credit grades and incomplete grades) will be placed on the President’s List and notified by the President’s Office of this status.
For your information, here is an easy guide on how to calculate a GPA:
Here’s a helpful chart showing how the term GPA changes when each individual grade is raised by one letter grade.
Enjoy your students over break. They’ve worked hard. Don’t be surprised if they want to sleep in (and, since they’re probably adjusted to going to bed at 1 or 2 am, don’t let that surprise you either.)
Margie M. Davidson
Director, Student Records & Academic Information
PS: Hope you have found these posts helpful and enjoyable.