Chancellor’s Update: Updates on Interim Grading Policy, Refunds and Building Access

Dear Students,

The disruptive impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be part of our daily lives and, as students, you are particularly affected as we shift today to alternative course delivery. There are a few updates I’d like to share with you about our new interim student grading policy, clarification on refunds, student assistance and access to campus buildings.

Emergency Grading Accommodation – Interim policy
Many students have asked whether we will have a credit/no credit grading policy this semester. The short answer is yes. All undergraduate students will receive a letter grade in each of their Spring 2020 courses by the grade deadline of May 21. Students will have until July 3 to exercise their option to designate each eligible Spring 2020 course to be graded on a credit/no credit basis or to keep the grade they received. Students who earn a C- or better in a course may opt for the credit/no credit option for that course. The current limitations on the number of courses/credits for the credit/no credit option are being suspended for the spring semester. By April 14, each school/college will designate a limited number of courses as ineligible for the credit/no credit grading option due to licensing/certification/accreditation requirements. Students will have until July 3 to designate classes as credit/no credit by downloading a form and submitting it to their academic advisor as an email attachment from their UWM email account.

For details, please see the new interim policy on emergency grading accommodation for undergraduate studentsStudents should consult with their academic advisor with questions about this policy and procedures. A similar policy for graduate students is being finalized, and we will share details tomorrow.

I encourage you to put forth the full effort in each of your classes to successfully complete your coursework while we have this grading accommodation interim policy in place.

Housing & Segregated Fees and Tuition
Last week, we announced that we will provide prorated refunds for housing, dining and parking permit fees for the remainder of the spring semester for students who have vacated their respective campuses.

To clarify that announcement, while we are making those refunds, there will be no pro-rated refunds for tuition and segregated fees. We continue to provide instruction through alternative means to safeguard the health and safety of our students, your families, our employees and our communities. In addition, UW System has determined that segregated fees at UW campuses will not be refunded. These fees provide support for critical services to students, including health care, student organizations, and fixed costs such as building construction. Please see our FAQ here.

Student Assistance
We continue to work on support for students during the pandemic. This includes:

  • Financial assistance from the Student Emergency Grant Fund, administered by the Dean of Students Office, to help with expenses for distance learning, food, housing or moving expenses and emergency travel
  • Groceries from the UWM Food Center and Pantry
  • Short-term, interest-free personal loans from the UW Credit Union

The campus programs listed above have been in high demand, and, thus, availability of funding is subject to change. We will continue our efforts to raise funds for these programs. To learn more about these resources, please see here.

Reminder on Access to UWM Buildings
In response to the State of Wisconsin’s Safer at Home order and to safeguard you, friends and loved ones, we have closed access to academic and administrative buildings. For the remainder of the semester, facilities will be accessible only to individuals with keys or other access to unlock the building. Students who need to get into academic buildings to retrieve personal items should contact their instructors, who will work with the deans of the schools and colleges to arrange access.

Please visit our COVID-19 website often. New information and helpful FAQs are added every day. We care about you and sympathize with the unprecedented changes you are facing during this COVID-19 crisis.

Best regards,

Mark A. Mone, PhD
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee