Q policy will help UH students
Things become less stressful for students if UH President Arthur K.
Smith rubber stamps a proposal to allow students to quit a class before
the last drop date without the result negatively affecting their grade
On Wednesday the Student Government Association senate showed its unanimous
support for a policy proposed by the Undergraduate Council that will give
more power to the individual student to decide to complete a course.
The Undergraduate Council, a think tank composed of faculty members
and students calls it the Q Grade Proposal, and it is a step toward student
friendliness while maintaining current UH academic standards.
Essentially, a grade of Q could replace a student's GPA-damaging withdrawal
while failing (WF) grade that can currently be given by a critical professor
to a student who hasn't had much luck in making the grade in the course.
Under the current policy, during the semester a student has two distinct
deadlines to drop a class: The first is a month after classes start and
allows the student to drop without a grade, but the second drop date, around
a month and a half after classes start, mandates that a professor gives
the student a WP or a WF grade.
If the new proposal goes into effect, the student can bypass the professor
and quit the class before the final with a Q grade.
I told a fellow UH student about this possible change. She said, "Hey,
I'm for anything that lowers the standards at UH."
I hope she was joking, but I don't really see this proposal as lowering
the standards at UH. In fact, it goes a long way toward bringing UH eye-to-eye
with our maroon rivals, except you can still walk on the grass.
At Texas A&M University, students also have two distinct course
drop deadlines. The first, a mere three days after the first day of class,
is when students can drop without receiving a grade. The second A&M
drop date is two and a half months later and allows students to drop with
a Q grade.
If passed, the proposal will not encourage a student to quit classes
with no care in the world about how long it takes to get a degree, since
it calls for a maximum of five Q grades per student.
Also, there's not much to stop professors from giving incomplete or
withdrawal grades to students after the drop deadline under the current
policy. Unfortunately, it has been my experience that some professors are
either oblivious to the discretion allotted to them as faculty members,
or claim that they can't do anything to help you, then quickly change the
subject to scold you for not having a higher appreciation for the sciences.
With the Q grade, students are empowered to choose their own destinies
(with a five-strikes-you're-out policy) without having to succumb to the
occasional tyrant professor who doesn't care that you work a 40-hour a
week job and go to school, and that other personal forces can also determine
your success in any given semester.