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Grading System

Student achievement is evaluated in relation to the attainment of the specific objectives of a course. At the beginning of a course, the instructor will explain these objectives and the basis upon which grades will be determined.

Grade definitions are as follows:

A: Excellent attainment of course objectives

B: Good attainment of course objectives

C: Satisfactory attainment of course objectives

D: Passing, less than satisfactory attainment of course objectives

F: Failing

I: Incomplete. Satisfactory but incomplete work for unforeseeable, emergency and justifiable reasons

W: Withdrawal. This grade may be assigned upon student petition or may be assigned by the instructor.

P: Pass, at least satisfactory (C or better)

NP: No-pass, less than satisfactory or failing

RD: Report Delayed. Assigned only by the director, admissions and records

Grade Point and Grade Point Average

Allan Hancock College uses the same system of grade points which the four-year colleges and universities use to give an overall appraisal of a student’s level of achievement.

A - 4 grade points per unit earned

B - 3 grade points per unit earned

C - 2 grade points per unit earned

D - 1 grade point per unit earned

F - 0 grade points per unit earned

P, NP, W and I—not included in computing GPA

The Grade Point Average (GPA) is determined by multiplying  the grade points for each unit times the number of units and then dividing the total units attempted into the total grade points received. (P, I, W, NP are not included in the GPA computation). See example.

4 units of B x 3 points  = 12 grade points
2 units of A x 4 points  = 8 grade points
2 units of C x 2 points  = 4 grade points
3 units of D x 1 point  = 3 grade points
1 unit of F x 0 points  = 0 grade points
12 units  = 27 grade points


Now divide the total grade points (27) by the total attempted units (12). 27 divided by 12 = 2.25 GPA.

Allan Hancock College annotates two grade point averages on a student’s academic transcript. The Allan Hancock College cumulative GPA is based on all units attempted and units earned in all AHC credit courses. The degree applicable total is based on the total number of units attempted and units earned in Allan Hancock College degree applicable credit courses.

Students are expected to monitor their own grade point averages to ensure that their scholarship meets individual program, financial aid or transfer requirements. Veterans should refer to the Veterans’ Bulletin.

Pass/No-Pass Grading Policy

No later than the first 30 percent of the semester, students may elect whether the basis of evaluation is to be pass/no-pass or a letter grade. Pass/no-pass courses are so designated in the Announcement of Courses section of this catalog.

A student may elect the pass/no-pass option during online registration or by completing a pass/no-pass option form and submitting it to the Admissions and Records office in Santa Maria or the administrative office of the Lompoc Valley, Santa Ynez Valley or Vandenberg AFB center by the deadline listed  in the academic calendar, which is published in this catalog and in the schedule of classes and is online. A student who has declared an option may not later rescind that choice.

It is the student’s responsibility to check the college catalog or with a counselor to verify that the course is offered with the pass/no-pass option. The grades assigned to students electing the option will be P (pass) for those who have attained course objectives to the satisfaction of the instructor, NP (no-pass) for those who have not attained the course objectives, or I (incomplete). The mechanics of pass/no-pass grading are as follows:

  1. Students who perform at a level equivalent to A, B, or C will receive the grade. Students will be awarded units for the course but their grade point averages will not be affected.
  2. Students who perform at a level equivalent to D or F will receive NP as a grade. No units will be granted and no grade points will be awarded.
  3. For classes starting after the beginning of the semester or term, the option must be declared at the time of enrollment.

Limitations on Pass/No-Pass Grades

Students transferring to four-year schools should not elect more than one class per semester for pass/no-pass. No more than 16 units of P graded courses may be applied toward an AA/AS degree.

Incomplete (I)

The grade of I may be given for satisfactory but incomplete work for unforeseeable, emergency, and justifiable reasons at the end of the semester or term. The instructor will indicate the condition of the removal of the I and the grade assigned in lieu of its removal, will give one copy to the student and will file a copy with the Admissions and Records office. A final grade will be assigned when the work stipulated has been completed and evaluated, or when the time limit for completing the work has passed. The I may be made up no later than 180 calendar days following the end of the semester or term in which it was assigned. An I grade does not constitute successful completion for prerequisite purposes. In addition, students may not reenroll in a course in which they have a grade of I. 

Withdrawal (W)

This grade may be assigned upon student petition or may be assigned by the instructor. Students may drop online via the myHancock student portal any time prior to the last day of the 12th week of a semester class or 75 percent of shorter term classes. An instructor may drop a student for nonattendance and assign a W within the same time limits. A grade of W may not be given after the times indicated above. Once a student enrolls in a course, it is the student’s responsibility to withdraw should they stop attending.

A student who officially withdraws from a class during the first 10 percent of the term or before will receive no grade of record.

Military Withdrawal (MW)

A student who is an active or reserve member of the U.S. military may be assigned a withdrawal symbol at any time after the period established by the governing board for withdrawal from class. The W symbol may be assigned upon verification of military orders. The student must submit a written request to withdraw and attach military orders. Contact the Admissions and Records office for further information.

Remedial Course Limit

Allan Hancock College offers courses which are defined as remedial. Remedial courses are those credit courses in reading, writing, math, English, learning skills, study skills and English as a Second Language which have been designated as non-degree applicable courses designed to assist the underprepared student to develop the academic skills necessary for college-level work.

No student shall receive more than 30 semester units of credit for remedial course work. Exceptions to this 30-unit limit are students enrolled in one or more courses of English as a Second Language and students identified by the district as having a verified learning disability. Students who reach the 30-unit limit and do not elect to advance to the college level program will be referred to the college’s noncredit basic education program. Students wishing to continue in the credit remedial program may petition for a waiver of the limitations of this policy.

Petition forms are available in the Counseling department. Petition forms should be completed and filed with the Remedial Appeals Committee.

Petitions will be evaluated on the basis of the student’s measurable progress toward the development of skills appropriate to enrollment in college level classes.

Documentation of measurable progress may be reflected in instructor/counselor evaluations, pre- and post-tests or progress as stated in the individual’s Student Educational Plan (SEP). If a waiver is granted, it should not exceed one academic year.