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Academic Information

Academic Definitions

The following are definitions of academic terms commonly used at Lansing Community College.
Associate Degree: The associate degree consists of a minimum of 60 semester credits in designated courses. It is earned with a minimum of a 2.0 cumulative GPA, successful completion of the LCC General Education requirements, and is recorded on the official academic record. At least 20 semester credits must be earned in attendance at Lansing Community College.
Certificate of Achievement: The certificate of achievement consists of a minimum of 30 specifically designated semester credits. It is earned with a minimum of a 2.0 cumulative GPA and is recorded on the official academic record. At least 10 semester credits must be earned in attendance at Lansing Community College.
Certificate of Completion: The certificate of completion consists of fewer than 30 specifically designated semester credits. It is earned with a minimum of a 2.0 cumulative GPA and is recorded on the official academic record. At least one-third of the credits required for this certificate must be earned in attendance at Lansing Community College.
Credit Hour: A credit hour is an instructional unit carried out for the expressed purpose of eliciting some measure of educational change in a learner or group of learners. A credit can be awarded on a student's academic transcript when he or she successfully completes a unit of instruction of not fewer than 800 instructional minutes.
Corequisite Course: A corequisite course is a course that must be taken concurrently with another course.
Course: A course is a sequence of planned learning experiences leading to a set of expected learning outcomes. Course activities are normally scheduled over an academic semester. A student's successful completion of a course earns academic credit based on contact hours in class or in laboratories. The student also earns an academic grade which evaluates the student's success in achieving the expected outcomes. A course routinely includes tests, quizzes, a final examination, and regular out-of-class assignments. At Lansing Community College, a standard college-wide course syllabus has been created for each course. A seminar, workshop, or fee-for-service learning/training unit is not a course.
Curriculum: A curriculum is a structured program of study. Each curriculum is assigned a number and is valid for a predetermined timeframe.
Major: A major is the predominant subject area within a curriculum.
Module: A module is a component of a course offered as a separate educational package, which includes learning objectives, learning activities, and assessment procedures designed to guide learners through a specific unit of instruction.
Prerequisite: A prerequisite is a course or other requirement that must be successfully fulfilled prior to participation in a subsequent course or activity. It may also be a skill or behavior that is judged essential to learning a subsequent, more complex skill or behavior.
Program: A program is the organizational structure of the College which provides or delivers instruction and/or services.

Revised 10/9/12

Grading System

The following numerical system is used at Lansing Community College to evaluate academic work:

College Standard Narrative Equivalent Recommended Guideline for Performance
Achievement of Objectives*
4.0 Excellent 91% to 100%
3.5 Good  86% to 90%
3.0   81% to 85%
2.5   76% to 80%
2.0 Satisfactory 71% to 75%
1.5   66% to 70%
1.0 Poor 60% to 65%
0.0 Failure 0% to 59%


Instead of a numerical grade, students may receive an alphabetical letter for their course work if they have audited a course (X), withdrawn from a course (W), or did not complete course work (I). Specific regulations regarding these alphabetical letters are as follows:

1. An "I" (incomplete) will not be counted toward the establishment of an earned grade point average (GPA) or toward graduation from Lansing Community College. All requests for incompletes are initiated by the student. An instructor may assign an "I" grade at the student's request when the following conditions are met: the student is unable to complete a course for some good and serious reason (for example, incapacitating illness, legal involvement that cannot be rescheduled, or changing work obligation); the student has demonstrated successful progress in class; and the student has completed approximately 80 percent of the course work. (Note: The 80 percent figure is a benchmark, since weighting of exams and other work varies among programs and courses. The intent is that only a small portion of the work remains.) When issuing an "I" grade, the instructor will also indicate what grade will be assigned if no further work is completed. All incompletes must be made up by the end of the next regular semester (Summer session is excluded) or earlier if an earlier date is established by the instructor or department. An extension may be granted if requested in writing by the student and approved by the instructor and department by the last day of the deadline; otherwise the "I" will be converted to the grade specified if no further work is completed.

2. An "X" (audit) grade is given when a student chooses to audit a course. No credit is granted, but enrollment is reflected on the student's academic record.

3. A "W" (withdrawal) indicates a withdrawal from a course. If a request for withdrawal from a semester-length class is received by the Registrar's Office prior to the end of the second week of the semester (or other equivalent dates as specified for variable length courses), no grade will be recorded on the student's academic record. For withdrawals after the second week and before the end of the eighth week of the semester (or other equivalent dates as specified for variable length courses), the student will receive a W as the record of the course. For withdrawals after the eighth week of the semester (or other equivalent dates as specified for variable length courses), a W is given only if the student has done passing work (1.0 or higher). If the student has not done passing work, he or she will receive a 0.0. A student may request to withdraw from a class with instructor's approval until the end of the fourteenth week of the semester (or other equivalent dates as specified for variable length courses).

Computing Grade Point Average

A student's grade point average is determined on the following basis:
Numerical Grade     GPA Points
4.0                             4.0
3.5                             3.5
3.0                             3.0
2.5                             2.5
2.0                             2.0
1.5                             1.5
1.0                             1.0
0.0                             0.0

"W', 'X", and "I" grades are not included in calculating grade point averages. For example, a student who receives five credit hours of 4.0, five credit hours of 3.0 and five credit hours of 2.0 would have a total of 45 GPA points. To compute the grade point average (GPA), the number of GPA points is divided by GPA hours (credits) taken during the semester. The student in this example would have a 3.0 GPA (45 GPA points/15 credits).

Pass/Fail Grading (P-Z)

The pass (P) / fail (Z) grading system has been established as a departmental option. This system is reserved for special course offerings where a pass/fail grading system is most appropriate for the goals and objectives of the course.
1. Course prerequisites and other criteria for enrolling in courses offered on the P-Z grading system shall be determined by the department offering the course.
2. Courses using the P-Z grading system will be published as being graded on the P-Z grading system, and the course syllabus shall be explicit regarding this fact.
3. Courses graded on the P-Z system may be counted toward an associate degree or certificate based on approval of the appropriate dean. A maximum of 10 percent of the total credits required for a degree or certificate may be acquired on the P-Z system. With departmental approval, the limitation on the use of P-Z course credits for an LCC degree or certificate may be waived when incoming P-Z credits are directly related to the degree or certificate in a course of study.

Grading procedure of the pass/fail system is as follows:
1. Grades on the P-Z system are not included in computing the semester or cumulative grade average.
2. The grades granted on the P-Z system are determined with definitions of "P" and "Z" as follows:
a. P (pass) represents a level of performance equivalent to a regular number grade of 2.0 or above on a 4.0 system; credit is granted.
b. Z (fail) represents a level of performance less than a 2.0 on a 4.0 system; no credit is granted.

All courses attempted on the P-Z grading system will appear on the student's academic record. Policies pertaining to the issuing of "W" and "I" grades also apply to courses graded on the P-Z system (see Grading System above).

Repeating a Course

Repeated courses are defined as courses that the student enrolls in and attempts more than once. When a student repeats a course for a higher grade, the student's academic record and transcript will reflect every grade received for the course. However, only the highest grade is used in computing the LCC cumulative GPA and credits earned.

When a student receives a grade of less than 2.0, "W", or "Z" for a course reported on the transcript and remains academically eligible to continue taking classes, the student may not enroll in the same course again without a permission form signed by an academic success coordinator.  This intervention will help identify barriers to the student's academic success at the college. If the student receives a grade of less than a 2.0, "W", or "Z" after her/his subsequent attempt(s) at taking the course, the student may not enroll again without another permission form signed by an academic success coordinator.

For Students Receiving Financial Aid:

Federal regulations limit the number of times a student may repeat a course while receiving financial aid for that course. This limit applies even if the student did not receive financial aid for earlier enrollments in the course.

  • A student may receive financial aid to repeat a previously passed course (1.0 or higher) one additional time.

  • A student may receive financial aid when repeating a previously failed course (0.0 or Z), regardless of the number of times the course was attempted and failed.

  • A student who is taking a course that requires the student to enroll in for multiple times to meet degree requirements may receive financial aid for these courses. (repeatable course list)

If a student chooses to retake a course that does not meet the above criteria, the credits for the course will not count when determining federal financial aid eligibility (such as the Federal Pell Grant and Federal Student Loans); therefore, financial aid will be recalculated to exclude these credits.  Also, financial aid must count every repeated course when determining credits attempted and earned.

Students in Selective Admissions Programs should contact the program for repeat policies specific to each program.   For more information about Selective Admissions Programs, visit

Revised August, 2015

Extra Credit Policy

Extra credit is defined as any opportunity for a student to raise a course grade that is not included in the percentages stated in the Methods of Evaluating Student Achievement/Progress in the section syllabus. Each department will determine for each of their courses and state in the course's Official College Syllabus whether or not extra credit may be offered.

In courses where extra credit may be offered:

  • Individual instructors will determine whether or not there will be extra credit opportunities in their sections.
  • Instructors' extra credit policies will be stated in their section syllabuses.

In sections where there are extra credit opportunities:

  • They must involve student work that is directly related to the Student Learning Outcomes of the course.
  • They may be used to raise a student's final grade a maximum of 0.5 on LCC's 4.0 scale.
  • All students in a section must have the possibility of earning extra credit; however, instructors may set eligibility criteria such as completion of all homework assignments or tests. These eligibility criteria may not be connected to a student's cumulative course grade and must be provided to students far enough in advance for all students to have the opportunity to satisfy the criteria.
  • Detailed information, including any eligibility criteria, must be distributed in advance of each opportunity.

Using a Course More Than Once for Credit Toward a Degree or Certificate

In order to ensure that graduates from Lansing Community College are academically well rounded, students will not be allowed to use the same course more than once for credit toward a degree or certificate unless specifically required or permitted to do so by the curriculum they are following. Under no circumstances will a student be allowed to use the same course more than once for credit toward the General Associate Degree.


Grades are available on the web to students approximately five business days after the close of each semester. Students who have an overdue indebtedness to the College will not have access to their grades.

Grade Changes

Students may petition an instructor for a grade change of a final grade in a course. The line of formal appeal for grade change petitions can be found in the College's Due Process statement. A student's final grade in a course may be changed by the course instructor. Grade changes by instructors are initiated by submitting signed Official Change of Grade Forms to the departmental office for review and approval by the departmental chair or lead faculty member. The completed Official Change of Grade Form is then forwarded to the Registrar's Office for posting on the student's permanent academic record. Completed Official Change of Grade Forms are not to be carried by the petitioning student to the Registrar's Office. The form will not be processed if received from the student. See the Student General Rules and Guidelines for the appeal process for grades at

Revised 10/9/12

Academic Standing Policy

Students must maintain at least a 2.0 cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) at Lansing Community College to remain in Good Standing, which indicates satisfactory academic progress. Students whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.0 will be placed on either "Warning" or "Probationary" standing, which indicate unsatisfactory academic progress. While on Warning or Probationary standing, the student may have limits on registration for classes. In addition, students on Warning or Probationary standing may be required to meet with a counselor and sign a Success Contract prior to registering. Students can return to Good Standing by earning a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher. Continuing to earn a GPA below 2.0 may result in being academically recessed from LCC.

Note: Only course work completed at LCC is considered for determination of academic standing. The academic standing is determined at the end of each semester (Fall, Spring, Summer).

Summary of Academic Standing Policy

  • Good Standing: Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) 2.0 or above
  • Warning: Cumulative GPA below 2.0; suggested that the student meet with a counselor.
  • Probation: Continued cumulative GPA below 2.0; registration limited to 12 or fewer credits for Fall and Spring Semesters and six or fewer for Summer Session, and student is required to meet with a counselor.
  • Academic Recess: Continued cumulative GPA below 2.0; student not eligible to register and must sit out one semester or Summer Session. Upon return following the semester of recess, a student must meet with a counselor to plan his or her academic success and sign a Success Contract. Satisfactory completion of this plan as well as semester-by-semester subsequent plans will allow further enrollment until a satisfactory cumulative GPA places the student in good standing.

Students receiving financial aid or veterans benefits are required to satisfy specific additional academic standards to continue receiving financial assistance. See the Financial Aid webpage.

Students in certain selective admission programs may have different standards for academic standing.

Students in Good Standing are eligible for the Dean's List and President's List each semester.  The criteria for the lists are as follows:

President's List: GPA of 3.81 or above and completion of at least 6 credits for the calculated term.

  • Students with "I" (Incomplete) or "W" (Withdrawal) grades for the calculated term are not eligible for this list.
  • Calculations are based on LCC courses only (no transfer credits).

Dean's List:  GPA of 3.50 to 3.80 and completion of at least 6 credits for the calculated term.

  • Students with "I" (Incomplete) or "W" (Withdrawal) grades for the calculated term are not eligible for this list.
  • Calculations are based on LCC classes only (no transfer credits).

Revised 10/9/12

Academic Amnesty

Lansing Community College recognizes that students are unsuccessful academically for a variety of reasons. Those students may return years later to find their low GPA is a barrier to fields they might otherwise be ready to enter. LCC has an Academic Amnesty Policy in order to allow such students a second chance. Qualified students may receive academic amnesty for a maximum of eighteen semester hours (or the quarter/term equivalent) of grades of 0.0. They will no longer be calculated into the student's GPA, and the "forgiven" grades will remain on the transcript along with a special notation explaining the Academic Amnesty Policy at LCC. The student must apply to the Registrar for academic amnesty, and an academic advisor or counselor must sign the application. In order for a student to qualify for academic amnesty, the following conditions must be met:
1. Five or more years must have elapsed since the last grade for which amnesty is requested.
2. The student must have earned twelve semester credit hours in courses numbered 100 or above at LCC and have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 since the last grade for which amnesty is requested.
3. Academic amnesty may be granted only once to any student and is irrevocable.
4. The Petition/Application for Academic Amnesty must be received by the Registrar's Office by the 10th week of the semester for consideration and action by the end of the semester.

Academic amnesty, when granted, applies only to LCC courses and not to any courses at other institutions. Further, there is no guarantee, expressed or implied, that any other college, university, or employer will recognize academic amnesty.


Catalog Information at Lansing Community College

Student Affairs Division
Gannon Building - StarZone
Phone: 517-483-1162
Additional contact information »

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