Class Rank

Students may obtain their class rank by making a request to the Office of Registration & Enrollment during normal business hours, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.  Student Request forms are available on the shelves outside Suite 280 and http://www.law.umaryland.edu/students/registration/ forms/class_rank_req.pdf. Email requests are not acceptable—the request must have a signature.  You may fax the request to (410) 706-2103 or drop it off in person. When requesting rank, each student must include his/her social security number or student identification number, printed name and signature.  Students must also indicate the method by which s/he wishes to receive the rank (mail, fax, email).  Please note that class rank is not available to first year students until the end of the academic year. 

Class rank is only calculated at the end of the fall and spring semesters.  Students who take summer school classes are not issued a new class rank in August, they must wait until December to receive a new rank which factors in their summer grades. Students changing divisions, for example from day to evening, will be ranked with that new division at the end of the next semester.  Grades processed after the availability of class rank (e.g., due to completion of work under a grade of Incomplete) will be included in the determination of class rank only in the next semester.

Class rank for graduates is determined in May of each year. It includes day, evening and part time day graduates from May of that year as well as the graduates from the preceding December and July graduation dates. 

The chart below has been developed in response to student and employer requests for information about the School of Law’s grading scale.  It will be updated and posted after each semester's grading is complete.  Please recognize that the numbers will change from semester to semester, and that students switching from one division to another will be ranked in their new division at the end of that semester.  Class rank of the graduating class combines all Day Division, Evening Division, and Part-time Day Division students graduating in July, December and May.

GRADING CHART - June 2018

 

Top 1/2

Top 1/3

Top 1/4

Top 1/10

Class of 2020 Day*

3.16

3.36

3.44

3.70

Class of 2019 Day*

3.32

3.46

3.54

3.70

Class of 2021 Evening*

2.98

3.20

3.27

3.55

Class of 2020 Evening*

3.25

3.37

3.48

3.78

Class of 2019 Evening*

3.32

3.44

3.52

3.76

* Class ranks for students who have not yet graduated are considered unofficial. GPAs for currently enrolled students are calculated to the hundredths column (two decimal places).

Class of 2018 Graduates**

3.3430

3.48

3.56

3.80

Class of 2017 Graduates**

3.28

3.48

3.5511

3.75

Class of 2016 Graduates**

3.33

3.4892

3.5631

3.7308

** Calculation of class rank for graduating classes combines all Day Division and Evening Division students graduating in July, December and May. GPAs for graduating students are calculated to the 4th decimal column (four decimal places) to avoid ties in class rank among graduating students when necessary (otherwise two decimal places). This was implemented beginning with the Class of 2014 graduates.

Confidentiality & Disclosure of Student Records

It is the policy of the University of Maryland to adhere to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (Buckley Amendment).  As such, it is the policy of the university (1) to permit students to inspect their education records; (2) to limit disclosure to others of personally identifiable information from education records without students’ prior written consent; and (3) to provide students the opportunity to seek correction of their education records where appropriate.  For a complete description of the campus policy, students should check the Policies section of the Student Answer Book which is available on line. 

Grade Grievance Procedure

  1. A. In the grading of coursework by their instructors, the students of the School of Law are entitled to a good faith evaluation of their actual course performance founded on an articulated standard. Grading, however, fundamentally falls within the professional judgment of the individual instructors for courses at the School of Law. As a result, the grade an instructor assigns to a student’s work is normally final. A grade may be changed only (a) by the instructor if a computational or recording error has been made, or (b) pursuant to this Grievance Procedure when it is determined that the grade was arbitrary or capricious.
  2. B. If a student believes that a grade is arbitrary or capricious, he or she may challenge the grade only by initiating a grade grievance pursuant to the following procedure.

    The student shall first contact the instructor for the course to consult about the instructor’s reasons for the assigned grade and to ensure that no computational or recording error has occurred. If an acceptable solution is not reached by this means, and the student wishes to pursue a grade grievance, the student must file a written or electronic complaint with the Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development of the School of Law within 45 days from the date the disputed grade is posted by the University Office of Student Records to the student’s online academic record (SURFS). If the instructor is not available for consultation within this deadline, the Associate Dean may extend the period for filing the grade grievance for an additional reasonable period or may waive the required consultation. The student must expressly request such an extension or waiver from the Associate Dean in writing or by electronic communication before the 45-day deadline expires to be granted an extension.
  3. C. The complaint shall:
    1. 1. demonstrate that the student has complied with, or the Associate Dean has waived, the consultation requirement;
    2. 2. state facts that, if found to be true, would justify a finding that the grade was arbitrary or capricious; and
    3. 3. propose a remedy that the student believes is appropriate for the claimed injury.
  4. D. If the grade grievance satisfies the requirements of Part C above and is timely filed as provided in Part B above, the Associate Dean shall undertake an investigation to determine whether probable cause exists to believe that the grade was arbitrary or capricious. The Associate Dean shall inform the instructor of the grade grievance and provide a copy of the complaint to the instructor. The instructor may respond if he or she desires. Upon completion of the investigation, the Associate Dean shall prepare a report that includes the reasons for the determination on the issue of probable cause. The determination of the Associate Dean on the issue of probable cause is final. If, therefore, the Associate Dean determines that no such probable cause exists, there shall be no further proceedings on the grade grievance.
  5. E. If the Associate Dean determines that probable cause exists to believe that the grade was arbitrary or capricious, the Associate Dean shall appoint a three-person ad hoc Committee of members of the Faculty Council to decide the matter. The Committee shall investigate the complaint and is empowered to establish the rules of procedure under which it will make its findings and determination of remedy. If the Committee finds by a preponderance of the evidence that the disputed grade was arbitrary or capricious, the Committee shall have the power to substitute a pass for the grade or take any other action it deems appropriate to remedy the injury to the student, including adjusting the grade for the course. The Committee’s decision on the complaint shall be in writing and shall include supporting reasons for its finding and the action taken. The decision of the Committee is final, subject to the right of appeal set forth in Part F below. The Committee shall complete its investigation and render its decision within 60 calendar days from the date on which the complaint was assigned to the Committee by the Associate Dean. At the request of the Committee, the Associate Dean may, for good reason, extend the time within which the Committee must report its decision. The Associate Dean shall promptly forward a copy of the Committee’s report to the student and the Dean of the School of Law.
  6. F. Appeals
    The student or the involved instructor may appeal a decision by the Committee as provided in Part E above to the Dean of the School of Law in writing within ten working days of receipt of the decision by the Committee. The only basis for such an appeal shall be clear and convincing evidence of an error of substance or procedure by the Committee. The Dean shall render a binding, final decision on the grade grievance appeal, including as appropriate any remedy he or she deems justified, within twenty working days of receipt of the appeal.
  7. G. Exclusivity of Procedure
    These rules state the only grounds and procedures for challenging a grade received in a course at the University of Maryland School of Law. These rules implement and are consistent with University System of Maryland and University of Maryland Baltimore policies concerning grade appeals.

Approved, May 10, 2012

Grade Reports

Students may obtain an unofficial grade report from the Office of Registration and Enrollment by completing, signing and submitting the Student Request Form (the form is available on the forms shelf outside Suite 280, Law School, or online at  http://www.law.umaryland.edu/students/registration/forms/.  The form may be submitted in person, by fax (410-706-2103) or by scan attached to an email message to

reg_enroll @ law.umaryland.edu
.  Every request requires the student’s signature; thus, email requests can be accepted only if accompanied by a scanned, signed form.

 

Students also are able to produce their own informal grade reports from SURFS (Student UseR Friendly System). This system is maintained through the campus Office of the Registrar. http://www.umaryland.edu/surfs/

Students may also reach SURFS through the Law School’s main page: click on “Student Resources,” then click on “Campus Resources,” and then click on “Student UseR Friendly System (SURFS).”  To login, students must provide their Student Identification Number (the nine-digit number assigned to you by the campus Office of the Registrar).  The initial value of PIN is your Date of Birth in the mmddyy format.  The choices once you log in the Personal Information Section include:

  • Change PIN
  • Change Security Question
  • View Addresses and Phone Numbers
  • View E-mail Address(es)
  • Update E-mail Address(es)
  • View Emergency Contacts
  • Update Emergency Contacts
  • Update Marital Status
  • Request for Name Change
  • Social Security Number Change Information
  • Request for Address Change
  • Request for Telephone Number Change

Grading System

  • Letter Grade Scale

    A letter grading system is used, in which each letter grade is awarded points on a four-point scale for purposes of computing grade point averages:

    4.17 - 4.33 A+
    3.84 - 4.16 A
    3.50 - 3.83 A-
    3.17 - 3.49 B+
    2.84 - 3.16 B
    2.50 - 2.83 B-
    2.17 - 2.49 C+
    1.84 - 2.16 C
    1.50 - 1.83 C-
    1.17 - 1.49 D+
    0.84 - 1.16 D
    0.50 - 0.83 D-
    Below 0.50 F
  • Grade Point Calculation

    Grade point averages (GPA) are computed by multiplying the point equivalent for the letter grade for each course by its weight in semester hours, adding the products for each course, and dividing the sum by the number of semester hours taken. Grades are rounded to two decimal points.  Students should not report self-calculated GPA's; use the GPA found on SURFS. When a course is repeated, the new grade, whether higher or lower, and credits replace the old grade and credits in the student's grade point average; however, both grades remain on the student's transcript, with the notation ' R' (the course was repeated) next to the first grade.

    See also Reporting Grade Point Average policies below.

  • Grading in Year-long Courses

    Grading in year-long courses, such as Clinics, and Trial Planning & Advocacy, is as follows: at the end of the fall semester, the student will receive a grade of NM indicating that no grade is available; at the end of the spring semester the student will receive a letter grade for all work done in the clinic/course.  On the student’s transcript, this letter grade will be listed for each semester according to the number of credits attributed to each semester and it will replace the NM originally listed at the end of the fall semester.  A student who is permitted to withdraw from the School of Law after completing one semester may receive a grade for the work done during the semester.

  • Incomplete Grades
    The grade I (incomplete) is given only to students who have a proper excuse for failure to present themselves for examinations or to complete any other work that may be required by the instructor in time for the instructor to complete grading by the grading due date.  It is not used to signify work of inferior quality.  A grade of incomplete may not be carried for more than one semester without the approval of the Director of Registration & Enrollment.  An incomplete grade given at the end of the spring semester or summer session must be converted to a letter grade by the end of the subsequent fall semester, and an incomplete grade given at the end of the fall semester must be converted to a letter grade at the end of the subsequent spring semester.  An incomplete grade not converted to a letter grade within these time limits, and for which the Director of Registration & Enrollment has not granted an extension, shall be converted to an F (0.00).  The grade I (incomplete) will remain on the transcript even after the work has been completed.

     

    If a student withdraws or is excluded from the law school, these periods of limitation regarding an incomplete shall be suspended while the student is absent from the school.  Any grade of incomplete remaining at the time a student is certified for graduation shall be change to an F (0.00).  The Director of Registration & Enrollment will approve the extension of an incomplete only in extraordinary circumstances.

  • Withdrawal from Courses
    “W” reflects a student’s withdrawal from a course, either voluntary or required after the add/drop period. “WA” reflects a student having been withdrawn administratively and “WD” indicates a student’s withdrawal from school. 

Latin Honors & Order of the Coif

Summa cum laude is awarded to the top five students in the graduating class.

Magna cum laude is awarded to the students in the top 10% of the graduating class.

Cum laude is awarded to the students in the top 1/3 of the graduating class.

Order of the Coif is awarded to students who are in the top 10% of the graduating class and who have completed at least seventy-five percent of their requirements at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law.

A graduating class combines all Day Division and Evening Division students graduating in July, December, and May.

Low Academic Performance

ABA Standard 309 requires that law schools “provide academic support designed to afford students a reasonable opportunity to complete the program of legal education, graduate, and become members of the legal profession.”

Students who perform at a low academic level will receive academic support consistent with this ABA policy.  These students will have the opportunity to focus on the development of skills necessary for success in the academic program through recommended or required participation in the Academic Achievement Program, as follows:

  1. After the fall semester of the first year, students performing in the lowest twenty percent of the class – based on fall semester grade point averages – will be strongly encouraged to take the spring elective Legal Profession/Reasoning & Rhetoric or its equivalent.
  2. After the fall semester of the first year, students who earned below a 2.0 grade point average will be required to take the spring elective Legal Profession/Reasoning & Rhetoric or its equivalent.
  3. After the fall semester of the first year, students who earned below a 1.5 grade point average will be placed on academic probation and will be required to meet with the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Communications for academic and other counseling immediately upon receiving first semester grades.
  4. At the end of the spring semester of the first year, students performing in the lowest twenty percent – based on cumulative grade point averages – will be strongly encouraged to take Commercial Law/Reasoning & Rhetoric II or its equivalent.  In addition, a student will be required to take Commercial Law/Reasoning & Rhetoric II or its equivalent if the student: (i) was ranked in the lowest twenty percent of the class at the conclusion of the fall semester of the first year, (ii) did not take Legal Profession/Reasoning & Rhetoric or its equivalent during the spring semester of the first year, and (iii) is ranked in the lowest ten percent of the class at the conclusion of the spring semester of the first year.

Official Transcripts

Students may obtain an official transcript by clicking on “SURFS” (http://www.umaryland.edu/surfs/) and then selecting the “Request for Official Transcript” option.

Probation & Exclusion

After the fall semester of the first year, students who earned below a 1.5 grade point average will be placed on academic probation and will be required to meet with the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Communications for academic and other counseling immediately upon receiving first semester grades.

At the end of each academic year, any student with a cumulative grade point average below 2.0 will be permanently excluded from the school.

At the end of each academic year, a student with a grade point average below 2.0 for that academic year will be permanently excluded from the school. For the purpose of determining grade point average for the academic year, summer session grades apply to the average of the subsequent academic year.

Students permanently excluded from the school may petition the Administrative Committee for readmission.

Readmission

A student who has been excluded may be readmitted only by action of the Administrative Committee, upon petition in writing setting forth reasons for seeking readmission.  The Administrative Committee cannot consider the petition for readmission of any student who, at the time of making the petition, is in default (1) with respect to tuition or fees, or (2) with respect to any financial obligations of the student to the University of Maryland other than for tuition and fees that in aggregate exceed $25.00, until the default has been cured. (See also Financial Responsibility.)

Readmission will be granted after academic exclusion only when the Committee is satisfied that there is good reason to believe the student will be able to do satisfactory work in the future. A student who is excluded for academic reasons will not be readmitted unless the Administrative Committee, by at least one vote more than needed to have a majority vote of the Committee, determines that the student has satisfied the readmission standards. The Committee’s decision on readmission will be final. A student who is readmitted to the school after having been academically excluded is in good standing and is not on academic probation. Readmitted students are subject to academic exclusion again if cumulative or academic year grade point averages fall below the required standard.

Reporting Grade Point Average

A student may report his or her grade point average as a letter grade in accord with the following chart:

If, on the four-point scale, a student’s cumulative G.P.A. is from

The student may report on his or her resume a letter grade of

4.17–4.33

A+

3.84–4.16

A

3.50–3.83

A-

3.17–3.49

B+

2.84–3.16

B

2.50–2.83

B-

2.17–2.49

C+

1.84–2.16

C

1.50–1.83

C-

1.17–1.49

D+

0.84–1.16

D

0.50–0.83

D-

Below 0.50

F

On your résumé, you can represent your GPA numerically or as a letter grade, or both. (GPA: 3.84 or GPA: A) If you represent your GPA numerically, you must use the exact information reflected on your official transcript, carried out to the one-hundredths place (see the example above).

You are not required to indicate the 4.33 grading scale with your numeric GPA but if you do choose to report the grading scale, you must use the 4.33 scale reflected on your transcript. (GPA: 3.84/4.33) It is extremely important that you represent your GPA accurately on your résumé and other documents you may submit to employers. Any error in reporting your grades will be perceived negatively by employers. Moreover, any inaccuracy regarding your grades may be construed as a misrepresentation of your credentials, which may result in an Honor Code violation.

Student Honor Code

  1. Preamble The basic presumption of the Honor Code is that all law students should adhere to the ideals of professional responsibility in honorably conducting themselves while pursuing a legal education. The purpose of the Honor Code is to enumerate specific guidelines to govern student conduct with respect to any academic matter and certain non-academic matters. Nevertheless, the enumeration of these specific guidelines should not be construed as a denial of the existence of other duties and responsibilities equally imperative, though not explicitly mentioned.
  2. Definitions For purposes of interpreting this Honor Code, the terms below are defined as follows: 

    “Class Day” means any day falling during the Law School’s fall semester, spring semester, or summer session that is a weekday other than a federal holiday, excluding winter and spring break. 

    “Electronic Signature” means any writing transmitted by computer bearing the author’s name. 

    “Law School” means the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law.

III. Prohibited Conduct

IV. Composition and Terms of Office of the Honor Board

V. Procedures

VI. Sanctions

VII. Miscellaneous

Academic Freedom

The University of Maryland School of Law regards academic freedom as essential to our mission and core values. Our commitment to academic freedom extends to all members of the law school community. We recognize the need for academic freedom for students and teachers, in their, at times overlapping, roles as scholars, educators, clinicians, administrators and librarians. Freedom in research is fundamental to the advancement of truth. Academic freedom in the classroom is fundamental for the protection of the rights of the teacher in teaching and of the student to freedom of learning. We also endorse the "Statement of the Association of American Law Schools in Support of Academic Freedom for Clinical Faculty," which affirms that "academic freedom is critical to achieving the objectives of clinical legal education and that the principle of academic freedom applies equally to clinical law faculty." We also believe that academic freedom is central to our core commitment to the pursuit of diversity as a source of richness within our faculty, student body and the legal profession as a whole. Finally, we endorse the 1995 declaration of the American Association for University Professors, which declares, "Academic freedom is indispensable to librarians, because they are trustees of knowledge with the responsibility of ensuring the availability of information and ideas, no matter how controversial, so that teachers may freely teach and students may freely learn."

Repeating Courses

A student who fails a required course must repeat the course. A student who fails an elective course may, but need not, repeat the course. Moreover, except as hereinafter provided, a student may repeat a course the student has not failed if the course is offered again prior to the student’s graduation, but only for one course on one occasion during the student's law school career. However, a student who has not failed the course may not repeat any Advanced Legal Research, Cardin, Clinic, Introduction to Legal Research, Legal Analysis and Writing, Legal Theory and Practice, or Written and Oral Advocacy course without the express permission of the Office of Registration & Enrollment.

A student who is required to repeat a course pursuant to the previous paragraph must do so no later than the next time the course is offered in the division in which the student is registered. However, if the course is next offered during the summer session, it need not be repeated at that time.

A student may receive credit for a course only once, the last time the course was taken. The student must pay tuition and fees for the repeated course as if not repeated. When a course is repeated, the new grade, whether higher or lower, replaces the old grade in the student's grade point average. In order for the new grade to replace the old grade, the repeated course must be the same course that was taken originally. However, both grades remain on the student's transcript, with a notation that the course was repeated.